Pouring Your Heart Out, Finding Your Ikigai

I just want to share a little about this past week and how I have been feeling.

I am not usually one to open up about how I am "feeling", I give space to others to share their feelings, and I may share the occasional thing I am struggling with, like my health, but I don't typically share my feelings.

I don't know if it is because I am feeling bone-weary tired (low iron again), if it is because I am speaking to Spirit on a regular basis, or if it is because I feel more comfortable in what I do. Or maybe it is a combination of all of that, and more. But, I do know I am feeling the need to share how I am feeling. 

This past week we released Transcendence: Art & Spirituality Summit, I could feel all the passion of this summit. I was so excited about it. It turned out amazing. Now, don't get me wrong, I have loved all my summits for different reasons, but this one really felt like 'home' to me.

Ikigai is a Japanese concept that means your 'reason for being.' 'Iki' in Japanese means 'life,' and 'gai' describes 'value' or 'worth'. Your ikigai is your life purpose or your bliss. It's what brings you joy and inspires you to get up every day.

Like I was in my spot of ikigai. Something had been previously missing and I knew that but I wasn't certain what it was. No, that's not true, I wasn't willing to face what it was. My Spiritual essence had previously gotten a bit out of control for me and when things went wrong, I walked away, I turned my back on Spirit. I now realize my part in that, but I believed at the time that Spirit had turned its back on me.  My spouse had just died unexpectedly, I had gone through a couple of traumatic spiritual events, and I was questioning everything about who I was in relation to others, partners, parents, children, and just life in general. 

And then I crashed hard. As some of you may know, I have shared this story many times, I went through a deep and dark depression that almost cost me my life. And, in a way it did take my life, because who I was never returned, I became a new me. At my core, I was the same person, I had the same memories, the same skills, and the same relatives, but I came out of that depression a stronger, healthier, and more authentic version of me, my true me. 

I came out of that depression no longer willing to be treated poorly, I came out willing to stand up to toxic family members, I came out... of the closet. I was no longer willing to be fake, or pretend, or put up with things that I had previously put up with and swept under the rug, even when it cost me dearly, I was not willing to let others be more important than I was. 

And don't get me wrong, that was not a wake-up one morning and all is well. No, it was a long hard road. One that I worked on constantly, once I made the decision to live. I started journaling, I started painting, I needed to create. I left a "good" union job with a pension to work for a non-profit, I left relationships with family and friends. I did whatever it took to make my life what I wanted (and needed) it to be.

And after a few years, I started Creative U, first off the side of my desk, and then when I got laid off (Spirit looking after me) I took the leap to full-time. My goal was to bring healing and creativity together because I knew how much it had saved my life to create, to write, to paint, to express. And I reflected on everything I created, what was it trying to tell me, what was I truly trying to get out, and express. I have loved the journey I have taken with Creative U (don't worry I'm not going anywhere). It has evolved here and there over the years. The one consistency has been the summits, I love the summits. I love the collaboration with like-minded people, I love how the sessions help people. I have loved watching clients and students grow and become their most authentic selves as they do the work of healing through creativity.

The past couple of months putting the Transcendence summit together really solidified for me the need to add the Spiritual component to what I do, it is who I am, it was the missing piece. But, with it comes vulnerability, not something I (or most people) are truly comfortable with. So, it physically, emotionally, and mentally took its toll on me when we had tech issues and I saw people leaving in record numbers, and I saw the comments from frustrated people trying to access sessions. When I knew that people were turning away and there was nothing I could do.

Yes, I worked with my platform to fix the issues, and I know that everyone is on their own journey and if they are supposed to be here they will be, if it is right for them it will work out. I 'know' all of that. I know I did what I could to provide important healing work, and I continue to do so. But, I also sat down and cried with the sheer frustration of not being able to help more, not being able to provide that safe place for everyone who comes here.

Friday night when the sessions were down for about 5 hours, I cried, I yelled (not at anyone), and I begged, as I was so upset about not being able to provide the best experience for those who were attending the summit. And when we got it up and running again, I literally felt like I had been run over by a bus. Every muscle in my body ached, I had a headache, and my teeth were clenched in pain. I don't tell you this to garner sympathy, I only share this so you can have an inkling of my passion for what I do and how I present it to you.

This work is my passion, my ikigai, my purpose, and yes it will still evolve and change as needed but it is my offering to the world. When I put together programs that are literally fed to me by Spirit, and then I see so many other creators out there doing similar things because we all got the same messages. I revel in my ability to share and help, and experience with others. But, I also grieve for those who are not ready to take the next step, who are not ready to save themselves. Who are still willing to be treated poorly or wait for someone or something to save them. 

We all turn away for different reasons until we make a choice to choose life, our life.

I try really hard every day to come from a place of love, for myself, for those who follow me via our email, or social media, and also for those I interact with each day online or in person. I don't always say the right thing, I don't always do the right thing, but I do always apologize where needed, and let's face it, I'm Canadian, I probably over apologize (sorry), and I always try my best. 

We keep striving each and every day to do our best for you. I switched to 'we' because Alice works hard to help me help you, and she is completely invested in providing a great experience for you as well.

I want to thank all of you who come, enjoy, experience, learn, create, and do the work for your own selves, and I am so grateful to be a part of your journey.

With love,



50% Complete

Two Step

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.