Thrivecraft ™ inspirational training, mentoring and business alchemy for coaches and meditation teachers

Nick Williams

Spirituality in Business with Nick Williams

In the course of researching my existing material for my forthcoming book, I came across some interesting video chats with the very lovely and fascinating, Nick Williams.  So, I thought I would share some…

Nick is a much loved author (his first book is called The Work We Are Born to Do), Coach and broadcaster, sharing fantastic inspiration, particularly to entrepreneurs and within the business sector.

Nick’s website – inspired-entrepreneur.com

I was amazed to realise that we filmed these videos almost five years ago – just at the beginning of my adventure connecting with some great people via social media and making films of our chats.

In fact, it was Nick who told me about the nifty Flip camera which I subsequently got for myself and have filmed dozens of films on since.  (Note, we hadn’t quite mastered the sound at this stage, so it is not the best sound quality).

In this pair of videos, I am asking Nick how he integrates his spiritual life into his practical, business life.

 


Putting Thrivecraft into Action!

Putting Thrivecraft into Action!

with Maggie Kay

shaman woman

Thrivecraft Weekend Workshop

At the Totnes Natural Health Centre

Near the Royal Seven Stars Hotel,

Totnes, Devon, UK

Sat 15 / Sun 16 March 2014

In this culminating workshop of the Thrivecraft programme,

we combine spiritual intelligence with practical know-how

to activate a rewarding shift in your life and/or business.

Guided by Maggie & harnessing the visionary input of the group,

you will develop a clear sense of your next steps

towards greater creative expression, prosperity and fulfilment.

Gain a stronger sense of who you are, your true purpose,

and the unique gifts you have to offer the world.

And learn the magical art of how to magnetise

your ideal clients, customers, investors and collaborators.

   Claim your true self and do what you love.

Create prosperity with authenticity and grace.

Attract opportunities, synchronicity and flow.

………………………………………………………….

Thrivecraft – Practical and Magical

……………………………………………..

  For more info and to book

click here

Eventbrite - The Art of Telepathic Marketing

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Caroline travels from Switzerland to attend workshops

and explains why it is well worth the trip


How do you form and launch a new business idea?

Its funny how one thing leads to another…  And it means I have lots of links to share with you today…

I was just scrolling through my Facebook page when an article by Happiness author and coach, Robert Holden, caught my eye.

www.robertholden.org

Robert’s work has always intrigued me and I’ve heard great things about him from colleagues and friends.  Reading his article, I remembered that Robert is a good friend of Nick Williams – another warm and inspiring UK coach who I connected with a couple of years ago.

www.inspired-entrepreneur.com

And so, that led me onto reviewing the video chats Nick and I had recorded together.  Up popped this one – Nick asking me what steps I advise people to take if they are starting out with a new business idea.

It’s called Tips for Inspired Entrepreneurs and I give three or four really good practical steps that are helpful if you are formulating or wanting to develop a new business – however big or small.

One of the points we discuss is how PERSONAL it is running your own business and how business success goes hand in hand with our own development as a person.

After all, our business is our creation and an expression of who we are. So to make the best of our business, we need to understand and manage how our personal strengths and weaknesses play out in our work .

And it works the other way too – running a business is one of the most character building endeavours we may ever find ourselves involved in.  It can be enormously challenging and by the same token, enormously growthful.

So how does it all begin?  How do you formulate and launch a new business idea?  Have a look…

As it happens, starting new business is a topical for me as I’m planning to attend the Business Start Up Show in London next month.

www.bstartup.com

My friend and colleague Rachel Elnaugh (former dragon from BBC TV Dragons’ Den) will be there to speak on ‘Metaphysical Marketing’ and ‘The Future is Feminine’ – two topics that are close to both our hearts.

www.RachelElnaugh.com

Rachel will also be there ‘womaning’ her stall in support of her exciting new TV channel – Imago People TV.  If you want to know more about it, have a look at Imago’s new website:-

www.imagopeople.tv

But to give you a taste, here are Rachel and I having a video chat about telepathic marketing.

And you are welcome to track down our other videos including our discussion on the emerging Feminine Wisdom in business on my You Tube channel, Thrivecraft.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Thrivecraft?feature=mhee

So, I hope some of these links are of interest to you and I wish you all the best with your new business idea!


Finding our Inner Wisdom – talking with Nick Williams

I made this video with Nick Williams a few years ago when we first met.  We are talking about inner wisdom and intuition – how to find it and how to trust it – and how it makes life so much easier!

Nick is a lovely guy and we found we had very resonant interests and approaches to spirituality, work and inner life.  He is author of several books including his signature work – Discover the Work You Were Born to Do and runs www.inspired-entrepreneur.com – a vibrant community of heart and soul centered entrepreneurs.

You can download Nick’s free guide to discovering the work you were born to do on his website and find out about all the activities and resources on offer.

Here is our video chat where Nick is asking me about inner wisdom and how I use it in my coaching work to shortcut to the real ‘gold’ within us.  (Note that Nick introduces me as Srimati, as I was named in those days!)


Raw and Real in the Wild Field Episode 6: Just a Little Tenderness

Well, my lovelies, it seems I’ve had a bit of blog writer’s block! I have continued to write a daily journal and have recorded a few videos for future consumption, but it’s been hard to know what to share with you for this episode of Raw and Real.  I’m guessing that this is because I’ve been deep within an inner process that’s hard to write about whilst inside it. It’s still in happening, but it’s now two weeks since my last post, so I thought I’d at least let you know what’s been going on.

I’m writing this from the wild cliffs of Cornwall instead of the wild field in Devon. Pat and I have been here at our caravan on the atlantic coast for a few days – suddenly hungry to be here after a four month block in Devon. We were partly influenced by the change in the weather – beautifully sunny and fine again after an intense spell of rain. It is incredibly beautiful here. The views over the ocean are just awesome and the psychic quietness of the atmosphere totally liberating. It feels like there’s space for your inner world to expand out and fly-dance in the sky.

About three weeks ago I embarked on a 40 day spiritual programme. It’s a simple thing really – daily reading, reflecting and writing on the themes – but the effects have been profound. I’m no stranger to this sort of thing (I spent my twenties engaged in full time study, meditation, right livelihood practice and retreats on the lead up to becoming an ordained Buddhist) but its been a while since I’ve taken up a such a purposeful, purely spiritual, exercise.

Recently, things have been very settled at the wild field. We’ve been there for a couple of months and all the pandemonium is over. Pat’s bad neck is much better, Jamie has been enjoying a renewed social life after his relationship break up and I’ve re-established my coaching, meditation and writing practice. I’ve been waking up every day, looking out over the peaceful meadows, feeling my wonderful family close by and counting my blessings. What a fantastic, beautiful, quiet, retreat-like haven of a life-style!  Almost without realising it, I’ve been dropping deeper and deeper into the richness of my inner world.

And so its not surprising that the spiritual programme is biting.  I recognise the pattern.  At first there’s excitement and inspiration at the juicy wisdom being studied.  Then times of uncomfortableness and resistance because an unenlightened part of me feels threatened (usually hanging on to some ingrained and unconscious way of being that’s really not necessary or useful any more).

After feeling tense and unhappy for a while (can be hours or days) it becomes clearer what’s being challenged and what needs to let go.  It helps to allow myself to feel my upset emotions (have a rant or a cry or whatever) and talk to someone who understands the process or write it all down in a journal without judgement. Eventually the realisations come and I end up feeling cleansed, renewed and aligned with a more peaceful, happy way of living than ever before.

I’m now 25 days into the programme and having my third wave of uncomfortableness. (I’ve been really happy and carefree in between, honest!) I’m reminded that at times like this the best thing we can do is simply accept ourselves just as we are – and without the need to analyse why we are feeling out of sorts. A great exercise when you feel like this is to write a long list of “I love me when….(and finish the sentence)”. Write about loving yourself – good or bad – until you have a feeling of accepting every last part of yourself unconditionally. For example “I love me when I’m inspired”, “I love me when I’m depressed”, “I love me when I know what I’m doing and why”, “I love me when I’m lost and confused”.

Unconditional acceptance of oneself is always the beginning of the end of unhappiness. It’s so simple. Even when you are feeling utterly wretched it is possible to step outside and look back upon yourself compassionately (just as you would look upon a crying child who has broken a beloved toy). The trick is to remember to do so! Once, when I was upset about something and unable to feel compassion for myself, Pat fetched a mirror and tenderly held it up in front of me. Looking at the poor crying face in there made me feel rather sorry for the girl and my heart melted.

I think Eckhart Tolle’s masterful book, The Power of Now, captures the simplicity of this acceptance process beautifully. I always say that the Power of Now is one of my ‘desert island books’. I have read scores and scores of spiritual and personal development books over the years, but this one captures an essence of them all. If I was stuck on a desert island with only a few books, I’d want this to be one of them. I thoroughly recommend it. Here’s his website:

www.eckharttolle.com

There’s also a brilliant loving kindness meditation that I learned many years ago and still practice and teach with relish. It’s a Buddhist meditation called the Metta Bhavana, or cultivation of loving kindness. (Not surprisingly, it seems to me that most spiritual traditions have similar contemplations or prayers.) The meditation begins by fostering love for oneself, then a friend, then a stranger, then an enemy, then the whole world. In my experience it is deeply transformational as well as gently nourishing, no matter what state you are in when you begin.  You can find a led Metta Bhavana meditation on CD and MP3 on the amazing Buddhist meditation and resource website, Wildmind. (One day I’ll record one myself, but I haven’t so far).

www.wildmind.org

Wildmind was founded by a lovely colleague of mine, Bodhipaksa, a fellow Scot who I first met at the Glasgow Buddhist Centre 25 years ago when we were both rookies.  He now lives in the USA with his young family and writes and teaches in addition to running Wildmind.  His latest book – Living As A River – is being launched next month.  Recently I’ve been guest blogging for Wildmind (so you’ll find a few of my videos and articles on the blog page) and Bodhipaksa has been so kind and helpful in supporting my move towards publishing my books and CDs.

I have written about love (one way or another) a lot. I suppose really understanding what love is all about is the core of my practice and inspiration.  Afterall, I have it on good authority that love is a pretty important thing.  Once, when Jamie was sitting in his highchair as a baby, I said to him jokingly, “Oh Jamie, what is the meaning of life?”  Hardly able to talk at that age, he answered clearly and emphatically, “Love.”  – A baby Buddha!

One of my first articles ever published was for the Buddhist magazine, Dharma Life. It’s my story and thoughts on maternal love – having not long become a mother to said baby Buddha.  I’d noticed how spiritually minded people were mixed up about what non-attachment means (still one of my favourite topics) and I was extolling us to embrace our love even if it means we also experience loss. Wildmind still carries this article on their blog page, so here’s the link.

http://www.wildmind.org/blogs/on-practice/all-embracing-urge-motherhood-and-practice

And here’s me talking to Nick Williams of www.inspired-entrepreneur.com again (see last week’s blog).  This time, he is asking me about the principle of non-attachment and I explain what I think it really means.  I quote William Blake’s poem. For me it captures the spirit of non-attachment and unconditional love:  “He who binds himself to a joy doth the winged life destroy; But he who kisses the joy as it flies, lives in eternity’s sunrise.”

Well, writing about all this compassionate and love stuff has cheered me up no end! I guess “I love me when I’m deep in challenging process”, “I love me when I have writer’s block” and “I love me when I’m writing inspiring stuff about love”  Just a little tenderness does the trick…


Raw and Real from the Wild Field Episode 5: To Reveal or Not to Reveal?

That is the question!  At least, it’s the question that was asked of me this week:  Should I be revealing so much personal experience in my Raw and Real blog?  Is it okay for someone in my position – a self-development professional  – to display vulnerability?  My answer: You betcha!

That’s what I believe anyway.  I recognise that it’s not everyone’s approach to coaching and teaching, however, it is totally and absolutely mine.  Sharing myself with you like this feels like the ‘signature dish’ of my delightful vocation.  I’m just not the aloof, out of reach, theorist type.  I’m interested in the applied stuff – the real stuff that makes a difference, that moves us to the core, the stuff that I know from the inside out.  As far as I can make out, sharing my own trials and tribulations and the wisdom that I learn from them, helps and inspires you far more than mere academic ideas.

Just the other day, a coaching client said to me “I find it so helpful to know that you struggle too.  It gives me hope.  If it seemed you were all sorted and I wasn’t, I’d just feel like I was a lost cause.  Knowing that you go through it too – and come out the other end – shows me that I can do it too.”  And I’m delighted to say that I’ve had such a surge of appreciative and supportive comments and clicks onto my website that I just know that my ‘brave, honest accounts’ are hitting the mark.

I’ve always looked up to others in my field who tell their revealing true stories.  Their vulnerability and authenticity inspires me.  I can relate to them, to the challenges they face, to how they feel.  I can follow in their footsteps as they traverse the wilderness, climb up and down mountains and run for joy through meadows.  Their story is not just a dry, dusty road map.  The colour and texture of their account becomes a 3D virtual reality experience that I can breathe and pant and sigh within.  More importantly, in the process I become equipped to go on in my own life’s journey.

One of my inspirations is Oriah Mountain Dreamer who wrote The Invitation.  This little poem, published in 1995,  rocked the world with its piercing depth and quickly developed into a best-selling book.  You can read the poem and find out about Oriah’s amazing work at www.oriah.org , however the poem begins…

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.  I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.  I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon.  I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shrivelled and closed from fear of further pain.  I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it…

Reading the book had a profound effect on me back in 2001.   I’d just moved to Devon from London and it gave me some crucial inspiration that led to meeting my (now) husband, Pat.  I wrote about this incredible experience in an article called Meeting My Match. (Here’s the link: http://wp.me/ps0N4-9U )   Recently, Oriah herself thanked me for sharing this article on her Facebook page.  I was thrilled to be personally acknowledged by such an awesome role model!

Ironically, I’ve actually been holding myself back from splurging all to you this week.  It’s been very quiet and settled here in the wild field, and I’ve been absolutely loving the retreat-like lifestyle.  For the last 10 days or so, I’ve been working on a personal spiritual development programme.  However, this programme requires me to “haud ma wheesht”, which is old Scots (“hold my quiet”) for keeping my mouth shut!  Now, I have to admit that this is a bit challenging for my personality.  When I’m excited about something, I find it hard to contain.  But contain it I must as it is vital for the process to work properly.

It’s a case of practising what I preach.  As I often advise clients, there are times when we must keep things to ourselves in order to thoroughly internalise a change and contain the energy of our endeavours.  Should we share our stories too soon, we risk dissipating our focus, or worse still, invite the shaking heads and wagging fingers of the nay sayers.  There’s nothing worse than a negative Nelly to undermine our tender new attempts at positive change.

Anyway, to satisfy the part of me that wants to document my inspiration and teach it to others, I’ve been quietly journaling and filming my progress with this exciting new programme.  (I’m also already getting juicy ideas for presenting fabulous future workshops with this material, but I know I need to be patient!)  One day, all will be revealed in the ‘Raw and Real’, but not until the time is right!

So, to reveal or not to reveal?  Well, with the exception noted above, I say reveal.   It is my experience that I am being spiritually guided to be personally revealing in the way I write and speak in order to fulfil my vocation.  And I’m not the only one.  I am so enjoying meeting and collaborating with a growing network of like-minded authentic colleagues worldwide.  One of the kings of authenticity, in my opinion, is the lovely Nick Williams, author of Discover of the Work You Were Born to Do, collaborator in The International Association of Conscious and Creative Writers www.iaccw.com  and founder of www.inspired-entrepreneur.com

So, I will leave you with some inspiration – a couple of short videos of Nick and I talking about the role of authenticity in our coaching work. 

Part 1

Part 2