This is a page from my Creative Oasis Journal. I use this type of journal with my coaching clients and for myself as a place to combine inspirational words and images in collage form. The above is my most recent entry and one I’m very excited about because it holds clues to a big event coming up in my life – the release of my CD.
Pink Heels Services: Business Coaching & Consulting
What inspired you to start your woman-owned business?
A few years ago I was feeling stuck, frustrated, unfulfilled and overwhelmed. Working one-on-one with a creativity coach changed my life within weeks! I returned to my love of music, began singing, writing songs and even performing again. I rediscovered the authentic me and life became a joy again. My amazing creativity coach, Jill Badonsky, thought I would make a good coach too. I loved the idea of helping other women create the positive mid-life experience that I was enjoying, so I went through an extensive training course and earned by certification as a certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach. I founded Creative Oasis Coaching and now love my new mid-life career as a creative lifestyle coach!
What were your primary goals when you started working with Pink Heels?
To learn how to create a greater presence on the Internet, share my message of hope with a greater audience, and formalize my business with things like a marketing plan and branding.
What goal are you most proud of that you accomplished while working with Pink Heels?
I’m very happy that I’ve clarified my mission statement and created a strong foundation from which to continue to grow my coaching practice.
What have you learned about yourself during the journey with Pink Heels?
I’ve learned that although one-on-one coaching sessions, writing articles and blog posts and facilitating workshops, retreats and teleclasses are my favorite aspects of Creative Oasis Coaching, I am also able to handle the necessary business and marketing aspects of my practice. (with the wonderful guidance and encouragement of Pink Heels!)
What is the name of your new small business that is ‘Up & Running?’
Creative Oasis Coaching
Web Site: www.creativeoasiscoaching.com
Do you have any final thoughts that you would like to share with the world; especially any potential women entrepreneurs?
Listen to your intuition. If you have an idea that energizes you and brings you joy whenever you think about it, talk about it or write about it – you’re on the right track. Then, reach out for the support you need to make your dreams come true – whether it be working with a coach or finding a support group or taking a class. And for those women in and around the mid-life years, I truly believe that you deserve to create a Mid-Life Oasis™ – because it doesn’t have to be a crisis. I’m living proof of that!
I’m anxious, excited, and a little impatient to finish this thing, yet, on the other hand, not quite sure that I’m ready for what comes next – much like I remember feeling just before Riley Anna was born. I’d kind of gotten used to being pregnant after nine plus months, but was not so sure about the whole how-to-be-a-mom thing.
As much as I was looking forward to leaving the studio each day with a few more songs completed, we kept coming up with tasty ideas to try here and there and ended up recording more tracks rather than just mixing. We were all enjoying the process too much to really worry about the fact that we’d gotten a bit off track. (Talk about an oasis – the studio time may be my ultimate Mid-Life Oasis!) I know in my heart that the end result will be much richer, fully realized songs.
I realized this was a perfect example of the non-linearity of the creative process. There’s no scientific formula for creating the ideal song. You have a feeling first, and then an idea and then maybe a memory pops up and says “hey would it be weird or wonderful to put sleigh bells on this part?” – so you try playing some sleight bells and see how that sounds. (BTW – it sounded wonderful)
Being open to the non-linear process has been a blessing. Some songs have changed formation, direction and intonation and songs that we thought were ready to stick a fork in (‘cuz those suckers were done!) – have benefited greatly from – “what if” – what if we add a lower harmony here or change the sound of the bass or add a concertina? Winding down the creative path with this music has been the trip of a lifetime for me and a real-life reinforcement of two powerful creative coaching techniques – being open to the non-linear and asking “what if”.
Just as with my own baby girl (now 10!!!!), I’m sure these songs will be more beautiful, meaningful and exceptional to me than anyone else – and that’s okay, because I also believe that like my amazingly intuitive, empathetic, and loving daughter – these songs will (hopefully) touch people in a positive and profound way, like she does every day.
It’s been such a treat to have my husband, Doug, in the studio co-producing with us. And, although Riley Anna remains our greatest creative collaboration to date, she’s still a work in progress, where as, very soon now I will step out of Pleasantry Lane Studios for the final time and the CD will be complete – 13 songs – fully formed and ready to make their way out into the world. I guess that’s why I’m beginning to play the “what if” game with the next phase – the CD release celebration! Great things are brewing and you’ll be the first to know what they are so stay tuned…
All the best from my creative oasis to yours,
My daughter, Riley Anna, recently turned ten years old. “TEN YEARS OLD!! DOUBLE DIGITS! I’m a TWEEN! Only three years ‘til I’m a TEENAGER!” (The all caps and exclamation points are hers, not mine, I can assure you.) My response to her overzealous excitement at turning ten was more along the lines of a quiet– “Woo-hoo. That’s great.” – followed by a tearful spell locked in the bathroom – every mom’s one sure “alone” place in the house. Of course, I’m thrilled to watch my daughter as she grows into such a loving, empathetic, fun, entertaining, caring person. But this milestone birthday brought home the fact that a decade is a good chunk of time, and this last chunk whizzed by at a rate that makes my head spin. Given traditional wisdom, the next will fly by with even faster. So what does this mean? Since I gave birth to Riley Anna at age 34 (I just barely missed “advanced maternal age” – isn’t that a charming medical phrase?) – you do the math. I’m coming up on a milestone birthday of my own and making great strides into this time of life we call “mid”. It seems like a good time to step back and take stock of my life, so I have. And you know what? I wouldn’t go back a decade for all the Botox in Hollywood! Since turning 40 I’ve experienced some of the best times of my life. I’ve been writing, performing and recording my original music again after years away from it. I’ve made time for meditation almost every morning of the past four years. I’ve been trained and certified as a creativity coach and now have the distinct privilege and pleasure of helping other people create and live their best lives. I’ve taken up running and am loving it, and I’m even training for a half-marathon – something I never would have done as a 20 or 30 year old! All this to say – if you’re ready for a change – if you’re hoping there’s something more – if you’re experiencing a little trepidation about the prospect of your next birthday – take a page from my daughter’s book. Own your age! LOVE IT! Be thrilled by the possibility of it all! Each new year brings new opportunities to do what we’ve never done, go where we’ve never gone, try what we’ve never tried. Now’s the time to go for it! As I like to say, “I’m having a Mid-Life Oasis – because it’s to much nicer than a crisis!” Join me, won’t you?
Join me for a fun teleclass, “Creating Your Oasis 101” this Wednesday, September, 9, 2009 @ 1pm central/11am pacific time. This inspirational and motivational call will be a great introduction (or refresher course) in how to make the time and space in your life for creative fulfillment.
My, my, my…music and movement are on my mind this morning! (alliteration too, apparently) Last night I experienced an amazing evening of music by the über-talented Elvis Costello and his latest band of merry men – The Sugarcanes. (Nashville legends Jerry Douglas and Jim Lauderdale and more!) Playing songs from their new CD, Secret, Profane & Sugarcane, as well as some Costello classics with new arrangements perfectly suited to the bluegrass sound of his band.
We were literally sitting right beneath Elvis, and it felt like the band was playing in our living room. They’re all stellar musicians and the sound was uplifting, and yet…something was missing. What was it? My husband, Doug, and I discussed this on our drive home and concluded the missing element…there was no drummer on this tour. There was a stand up bass player and the music had rhythm, but there was nothing driving the beat the way a drummer does. No drummer equaled no dancing. You wanted to tap your foot and clap along in time, but getting up out of your seat and dancing was just not in the picture. Not the norm for an Elvis show. As a Dallas Observer review said, “…the songs lacked a bit of propulsion.” Isn’t it cool how certain music can really propel you? This summer, my daughter, Riley Anna, and I began compiling a list of songs that absolutely make you dance every time you hear them. (You know – like the happy, Snoopy dance!) The idea began when we watched “Madagascar 2” – and the silly, yet infectious, song “Move It, Move It” had us both dancing around the room as if we had the proverbial ants you know where. “Wouldn’t it be great to have an entire compilation of these kind of songs?” I thought. “Songs guaranteed to lift your spirits and get you dancing and smiling when you need a little pick-me-up.” Songs deliver Instant Oasis Moments – five to ten minute bite-size bonbons of joy! Which songs have the power to levitate you from your chair and get you moving – even on the worst of days? What song always makes you dance? (whether you want to or not!) I’d love to hear your favorites and check them out. Here’s my short, but growing, list of songs that absolutely make you dance every time you hear them: Move It Move It by will.i.am It’s Your Thing – James Brown Pump It Up – Elvis Costello Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now) – C&C Music Factory Love Shack – B52s You Drop the Bomb on Me – The Gap Band A,B,C – The Jackson 5Most any Putayamo Worldbeat CD I don’t listen to music as often as I’d like during the day, because my brain will not allow me to read and write and talk on the phone with my coaching clients while listening. I have to sing along, even if only in my head. But, music can be a great motivator in other ways. For example, I “get to” listen to an entire CD as a special treat while I do something like clear my desk or spend time organizing and filing. In fact, I was able to reorganize my mailing list this morning while listening to music and the time flew by! Listening to good music almost always inspires me to start making some music of my own. So, I’m off to the keyboards right now! Why not treat yourself to an Instant Oasis Moment right now and listen to a song that absolutely makes you dance every time you hear it!