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Catching the Whispers

Four weeks of exploration to open your life to the poetic

Registration opens 20 October

Starts: 8 November 2019

Fee: from £160

Are you longing for more creative joy in your busy life?

Do you want to rediscover the power to dream, to imagine, to experience deep joy and delight?

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I’ve been in that lost place - creeping out of dry-as-dust conferences to the nearest art gallery, doodling my way through endless meetings, getting sick from taking on too much at work.

I’ve designed Catching the Whispers so that you can reacquaint yourself with those poetic and creative passions that you’re missing. An online course based around four Explorations, with thoughtful readings, beautiful images, intriguing activities for you to do, and videos to watch, Catching the Whispers offers you ~

  • a revived sense of the poetic in your world, through new ways of noticing

  • the beginnings of a poetic practice that will continue to nourish your inner self

  • a clearer understanding of your personal values, of what matters most to you at this point in your life, to guide your choices

  • an understanding of how you currently use your time, and of other choices that might free your potential for a more choice-ful and poetic life

  • creation of your own personalised Poetic Life Notebook, sparkling with insights, possibilities, and ideas for action

  • a joyful list of potential poetic life projects to take forwards.

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If you have a suspicion, an inkling, a hint, that a more poetic life is lying in wait for you, it is time to set off in search of it. This course will support you in your first steps into the territory of your longings, and act as a guide as you venture into the wilderness of life beyond the given.

This course is for you if you’ve noticed whispers of intuition drawing you more strongly towards art, poetry, writing, music. Asking for more beauty, more delight. In the busyness of our daily lives, these whispers sometimes slip past us and we miss their message. Sometimes we resist hearing what they have to tell us in case it is uncomfortable to hear. Now it is time to listen!

More about me

I’m offering this poetic life work because I want us to look more deeply at this amazing world and ourselves in it. I want to support people, especially women, to come back to what they once loved but may have set aside, to become more fully themselves, and to strengthen their voices as they speak out more loudly on behalf of beauty, truth, and peace.

I have experienced a deep and radical shift in my life over the last decade, moving from academia to become a contemporary painter, exhibiting in London and Berlin. Now I split my time between living and painting on a small Scottish island and being with family in New Zealand and London. I also bring to this course my long experience as a teacher, from voluntary service in a secondary school in east Africa, to teaching English in the UK to newly arrived migrant children and their parents, training teachers for schools in UK, Norway, Malta, Oman, Malaysia, Ethiopia, and finally as a full professor in UK universities.

In Catching the Whispers, I want you to feel the strength and support that comes from knowing I have gone this route before you. I’ve tried the path, and found it leads to enchanting places. I want you to feel that I’ve got your back as you put one foot in front of the other, exploring possibilities that you already, at some level, know are waiting for you.

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 More about the course

The course is built around four ‘Explorations’, each designed to take you through a week of activities that practice catching the whispers of your intuition and contemplating the messages they carry for you.

In week 1, we begin the creation of beautiful notebooks to record your adventures – to log your triumphs and discoveries, and to record maps that lead to the treasure you want to uncover in your life so that you can return by yourself. And we’ll grow a habit of writing each day to log your experiences on the journey. These notebooks will become sources of inspiration for future explorations long after the course has finished.

Where the course leads will be different for each of us, because we’re each guided by our own compass of core values. Uncovering and claiming these values is at the heart of the work in Week 2. We then consider how we choose to fill our lives in the light of our values, and begin to see how we might shift things and find time for the whispered suggestions of more poetic projects.

To the clarity of our personal values, Week 3 turns a spotlight on our embodied experience of daily time. We identify those hours in the day when our mind is diamond bright so that we can choose to use them in the service of our longings for a poetic life. A sparkling collection of tasks adds more pages to your notebooks, full of openings and possibilities.

In Week 4 we create the physical place and space that will work as your base for creating your poetic life, your shelter, and your welcoming bothy. Comfortably installed in this refuge, you take time to reflect on how far you have travelled and to plan future expeditions.

The Explorations will come to you each Friday for four weeks through this website. In addition to the beautifully illustrated webpages with their rich readings, activities, and videos you will also have the opportunity to meet me and other participants through a private Facebook Group where experiences and ideas can be shared. I’ll be active in the Facebook group during the course. In Week 3, you are invited to a special online Poetic Life Salon to discuss your discoveries and pose questions to me and the group.

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I signed up for the online course because I lacked motivation with my artwork but this course helps you to look at all aspects of your life. I have completed the Catching the Whispers course but this is just the beginning of my ‘Poetic Life’ incorporating what I have learnt.
— Suzanne
Catching the Whispers was such a precious, and powerful, opportunity for me: to dwell in stillness; to notice; to be curious; to listen to what is ‘calling‘ and to discern what supports I need right now. The beautifully crafted reflective activities have afforded glimpses of possibility that have enabled me to take the next step on my contemplative, poetic life-journey. Thank-you.
— Karen
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Your choice

There are three ways to participate in Catching the Whispers ~ personally guided, with group support, self-guided

1  Self-guided

This mode is for you if:

  • you enjoy working on your own, going deep into activities to explore what your intuition is whispering to you

Your personally guided package includes:

  • access to all the course materials online. That’s four Explorations with their thoughtful readings, intriguing activities, illuminating videos, and beautiful images

  • membership of the closed Catching the Whispers Facebook Group, where you can meet other participants and share discoveries as the course progresses. I’ll be actively present in the group during the course.

  • an invitation to an online Poetic Life Salon, led by me, where you can share your discoveries with other participants and commit to your next steps.


2  With group support

This mode is for you if:

  • you enjoy getting to know other people in a small group setting, as well as working on your own, going deep into activities to explore what your intuition is whispering to you

  • you want the extra input and energy generated by weekly group conversations online, where you’ll join me and other course participants to share your discoveries, ask questions, and receive sparkling new ideas

Your group support package includes:

  • weekly small group conversations online, led by me, in which you’ll join 2 or 3 other participants to talk about the tasks you’ve done and what you’ve discovered about yourself and your poetic life

  • access to all the course materials online. That’s four Explorations with their thoughtful readings, intriguing tasks, illuminating videos, and beautiful images.

  • membership of the closed Catching the Whispers Facebook Group, where you can meet other participants and share discoveries as the course progresses. I’ll be actively present in the group during the course.

  • an invitation to an online Poetic Life Salon, led by me, where you can share your discoveries with other participants and commit to your next steps

 

3  Personally guided

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This mode could be for you if:

  • you already know that you want a deeply poetic life, and have some idea of the shape it could take

  • you are committed to the time and work it takes to make it happen

  • you want to add personal mentoring in order to use the course to make changes and move towards the poetic life you long for

Your package includes:

  • a free 15 minute call before you sign up for the course to explore how we can work together

  • each week - an hour of online mentoring conversation with me. That’s four hours of personal support for your commitment to catching the whispers and shifting your life towards the poetic

  • access to all the course materials online. That’s four Explorations with their thoughtful readings, intriguing activities, illuminating videos, and beautiful images.

  • membership of the closed Catching the Whispers Facebook Group, where you can meet other participants and share discoveries as the course progresses. I’ll be actively present in the group during the course.

  • an invitation to the closing online Poetic Life Salon, led by me, where you can share your discoveries with other participants and commit to your next steps

In the mentoring conversations, half way through each week, we’ll talk through your discoveries and questions from the activities so far. I’ll use my empathic listening skills to ask questions to encourage you dig more deeply and to mirror back to you your achievements and potential. We’ll agree a set of energising goals for the rest of your week

 Only a small number of personally guided packages are available. Please contact me directly via the form at the bottom of the page to book the free 15 minute exploratory call.

Course fees

Catching the Whispers, the online course, self-guided: £160

Catching the Whispers, the online course plus group support: £450

Catching the Whispers, the online course, personally guided: £920 (limited slots available - please contact me directly before purchasing)

Registration closes 6 November, midnight UK time.

Terms and conditions:

Prices include all the materials, access to the Facebook group and Online Salon. They do not include the two notebooks and writing and colouring materials that you will need - it’s absolutely fine to use notebooks you already have.

Self-guided and group support modes only: You can change your mind until 5 November, and we will refund the course fee. After that, no money can be refunded.

to purchase the course …

Catching the Whispers - personally guided £920   Please contact me directly to enquire about this option (form at the end of this page)

Catching the Whispers - personally guided £920

Please contact me directly to enquire about this option (form at the end of this page)

More testimonials from people who’ve worked with me

Lynne, Thank you so much for all you’ve enabled; for all the ideas, processes and projects you initiated, gave advice and encouraged; for being this inspiring, brave and open-minded woman and friend that you are.

Christina Schmitt ~ researcher, Berlin


There was so much that was started by your inviting me to do a workshop at your art show in 2014. If I can point to a place where I feel like I started from - started making dreams more real - it would be that moment of asking and the day itself. 

I admire you so much for your dedication, fierceness, and allegiance to curiosity and creativity. 

Melissa Fu ~ writer, UK


From you, Lynne, I not only learned how to improve my painting, but also to feel confident and strong while doing it. With your voice in the back of my head, I did not hesitate. I painted with a sure hand, trusting that my eyes, senses and body would work together and do the right steps..

.. getting to know you and learning from you on so many levels was wonderful. You definitely left traces and footsteps to follow.

Ina ~ researcher, Berlin

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Frequently asked questions

How much time will I need to spend on the course?

The weekly Explorations are designed to take about 3 hours a week. In addition, we’ll begin a practice of writing that will need 20 – 30 minutes early in the day – I’m expecting that you will get so much out of this practice that you’ll love starting your day a little earlier… In the final week, there will be a 60 minute online Poetic Life Salon that you are invited to participate in.

If you purchase the personally guided or group support packages, you will have a further 60 minute online call for each of the four weeks.

 

 Do I need to show up at the same time each week?

You work at your own pace through the materials, and you can choose when you do the activities. Each Exploration has three or four Activities, and the maximum time you’ll need for an Activity is around 45 minutes. If you want to, you can set aside a half day to spend on the week’s Exploration. Or you can do it in shorter bits of time across several days.

If you purchase the personally guided or group support packages, you can do the Activities at your own speed and come online at the agreed times for our meetings.

What technology do I need? Is it complicated? Do I need a fast computer/Wi-Fi/broadband?

We’ve made it straightforward. Everything is online, so you’ll need an internet connection. Otherwise, nothing special. When you register, you’ll be sent joining instructions for the Facebook Group and for the online Salon, which will use the platform Zoom

I don’t like Facebook. Do I have to join the group?

 I don’t much like it either but as of October 2019, I don’t know of an alternative to the closed Facebook Groups, which let us share photos and thoughts in writing, and keep them there to refer back to. Because it’s a closed group, no one outside the group can see what you post. You need a Facebook account to join but you don’t need to post anything on your main timeline if you don’t want to.

 

What do I get for my money?

Apart from shifting your life back on track, waking up excited, feeling your smile return more often, taking yourself more seriously ….?

With the basic package, you get 4 weeks of Explorations, each on its own webpage – with thoughtful readings, intriguing activities, illuminating videos, and beautiful images. Doing the activities will gradually fill your personal Poetic Life Notebook, leaving you with a record of your excavated dreams, of what matters most to you, and of possible future projects.  You get to share your experiences with others in the Facebook Group, during the course month and afterwards. You get an invitation to our exclusive Poetic Life Online Salon. You get back in touch with your forgotten dreams and lost loves. You get strategies to organize your life. You get new energy to keep going when the course finishes.

Is it worth paying extra for the other modes?

If you want a skilled personal guide / mentor to accompany you, there are just three slots available. Please contact me directly to discuss before purchasing.

If you enjoy talking with a small group of like-minded people, the Group Support package may suit you.

Can I keep the materials? How long do I have access to the course?

Once you register for the course, you can join subsequent runs of Catching the Whispers totally free. You can download the materials for your personal use, but please note that the copyright remains with me as writer. The materials will remain online for at least 6 months after the course finishes. At that time, they may be updated. The Facebook group will remain active – I retain the right to close it or change it, and you retain the right to leave it, at any point.

 

 Can I get my money back if I don’t like it?

I recommend that you have a good read of the blog and try the freebie “5 Openings” to get a feel for how I write and a taster of the kinds of activities we’ll be doing. Then you’ll know what you are investing in.

You can change your mind about taking the course up until 5 November, and we will refund your course fee. After that, no money can be refunded.

Why is there a focus on notebooks and writing in the course? Can’t I just use my laptop or phone?

Good question! It’s a deliberate focus because I believe so strongly in the benefits of working on the horizontal surface of the paper with a pen in your hand, moving at the speed of handwriting or drawing. When we’re doing this, our eyes, hands, and thinking processes are combined in a particular way that makes for a deep embodied and emotional experience that connects with the full physical, mental, and emotional, human person.

And it’s only for four weeks – so if you’re not persuaded by the end, you can go back to hitting keys!

 

Do I need to be artistic to do the tasks?

Not at all. The whole idea is to enjoy working with your hands because I believe that embodied practice is the most enjoyable and most meaningful. The activities suggest easy ways to get started if you’re out of practice with crafty ways of using your hands - like cutting and sticking, doodling, drawing lines.

I’m an introvert. Will there be any uncomfortable group work or talking in public?

Me too! Catching the Whispers is all about becoming your full self, about encountering your dreams. Doing the Explorations is a joyfully private experience. After that, it’s up to you how much you want to share in the Facebook Group or in the Online Salon. You don’t have to speak in the Salon – you can just hover at the back – or you can type in your comments. My aim is that everyone will feel safe and supported enough to contribute in ways that feel comfortable to them.

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To purchase the course…

Catching the Whispers - personally guided £920   Please contact me directly to enquire about this option (form below)

Catching the Whispers - personally guided £920

Please contact me directly to enquire about this option (form below)

To enquire about the personally guided package, or for other queries please use this form:

Name *
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