Taking My Encore, Feeding My Soul

Last week, a gentle nudge from my friend that it’s been months, yes almost three, since my last post when I introduced “encore” as best frame for my “what next.”  So what am I discovering about taking my encore?

Life is full and rich, and sometimes a bit overwhelming.  Several weeks back, a friend wrote about the 3 A’s that are guiding her life this year: activation, amplification and acceleration.  I immediately felt resonance, especially that feeling of acceleration.  Like “encore,” this framing gives me clarity and grounding.  Activation of intent amplifies the field, helping us pay attention and sense more fully into all that’s emerging, aligning, and supporting us.  Amplification leads to acceleration, things happen faster: what we ask for, what we put out, and right back at us.  Instant karma.

Since Christmas, I’ve had a banquet table full of work opportunities.  Diverse and delicious like “tapas,” my favourite way of eating, a little of this and that.  A matter of “making hay while the sun shine,” knowing several invitations have been specific to time, place and person and that all this can shift tomorrow:

  • Introduced online eCourse support for a leadership-coaching program I’ve designed and delivered, while mentoring several principals in the training delivery component.
  • Hosted two concurrent sessions of my Art of Facilitation five-week eCourse and getting ready to design a new offering to launch next fall: The Power of Questions.
  • Continue to co-host our monthly circle for women leaders in education.  We celebrated our first anniversary in March and I’m heartened that our original call continues to resonate with those who came to that very first circle, and now, several new members.
  • Experimenting with three other practitioners in a Change Lab for intervening in children services and not for profit programs.  Knowing we’re each our own “change lab,” as we draw from and learn about our collective work in systems mapping, complexity and innovation, Theory U, developmental evaluation, and hosting, we’re developing capacity, frames and prototypes to cascade into the local levels.  Our “deep breakfast” meetings are delicious!
  • Hosted a February “Painting from Within” intuitive painting session – a welcome, meditative day to simply be, while guiding and delighting in watching women step, dip and dive into their creative wellsprings.P1000018
  • Taught some simple principles and hosting methods to forty-two high school students from across Alberta and Finland in Jasper.  A “dream come true” to watch them host World Cafes for their peers, teachers and principals, and then plan shopping expeditions to buy tingshas for their Finnish guests! Seeds planted to extend this work with students in other arenas down the road.
  • Co-hosting a multi-generational conversation for women leaders the end of this month.  Called Inside Outside Leadership: Women Leading from Inner Connection to Outer Action, we’ve designed for our “at capacity” gathering, a gracious, elegantly simple and spacious program that weaves circle, individual reflection and writing, with creative expression and small group conversation.  Given the wait list and still growing interest, we anticipate an annual offering.64840_4440698974900_258563557_n
  • Heading off to Whidbey Island in early May to sit in circle with Christina and Ann and others world-wide who accepted the invitation to co-design “what next” for Peerspirit and circle practice in the world.
  • Planted another “dream seed” by just this week emailing Parker Palmer to invite him to Edmonton.  Courage to Teach was foundational inspiration for my mentoring work with new and veteran educators.  The “offspring” poetry collections, Teaching with Fire and Leading from Within, are my hosting-facilitation “signatures,” and A Hidden Wholeness and Let Your Life Speak have been soul food as I transitioned into now.

P1010247And for dessert, The Scientist and I just returned from an incredible twelve-day trip to China.  Talk about activation, amplification and acceleration.  Five cities in ten days – Shanghai, Suzhou, Hangzhou, Xi’an and Beijing.  Staggering impressions…. thirty storey high apartment buildings for as far as the eye could see, corporate architecture on par with Chicago, several Unesco World Heritage sights and world wonders, meticulous artistry – jade carving, silk embroidery and carpet-weaving, cloisonné, and haze, haze and more haze, as our photos show.

Have I whetted your appetite?

PS – Thanks, Terri.

About Katharine Weinmann

attending to the inner life to live and lead with kindness, clarity and wisdom; writing to find the beauty in her wabi sabi life
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4 Responses to Taking My Encore, Feeding My Soul

  1. Terri Blair Maracle says:

    Wow, you definately have redefined the word ‘retirement’ 🙂 It is like reading a novel and I can’t wait for the next chapter……everyone needs a little nudge sometimes.

    • Thanks so much, Terri. Every now and then, especially when I’m in the recycle of that Christmas cold (the one that came on the heels of the Newtown school tragedy) or feeling overwhelmed with the deadlines and such, I wonder about my own definition. And then I remember: this is always what and how I imagined living this next chapter…fully engaged, enjoying the richness of life, choosing with whom, what and how I’d share my allocation of Life’s precious energy. Discerning – learning when to say “no” so that I can live in my committed “yes.”
      And please know, the time you invest to read and comment to me is such an affirmation, particularly as we learn to navigate these new waters for ourselves. Thank YOU.

  2. Terry Stevens says:

    You are awesome and you take my breath away with your energy and talent

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