Dare to Blossom Life Coaching with Mary Lunnen

Welcome to the Dare to Blossom Newsletter 
First, may I wish you the best possible year ahead in 2021. I am aware that many people have had the worst of times in 2020, maybe you have had Covid 19 yourself; maybe you are still unwell. Maybe family or friends are; maybe you have lost someone to this awful disease. Maybe you are a key worker and have not had a proper rest for so long, and now find yourself back in the midst of the new upsurge.

Alongside all of that, maybe there were some wonderful moments: nature in her beauty and glory; the kindness of strangers; the friendships sustained even when we could not see each other. My wish for you, for us all, is for a happy and healthy year ahead, and an appreciation of every moment.

Reflections: Weaving the New
Reader Reflections: On The Light Within
More New Artwork 

Dare to Blossom Monthly Circle on Zoom 8th January
From my archives: January titles poem
Three free Taster Circles and the new 2021 programmes

Reflections: Weaving the New

If nothing else, 2020 has shown me that no one can predict the future. And yet, I can choose how to weave the new into my life. I am so grateful to everyone who has connected with me this year. The last six week deep-dive circle was entitled 'Weavers of Shadow and Light' - and there will be another run of this programme beginning in mid-January, as well as another 'Your Powerful Voice' programme.

As you may have seen in the extra bulletin recently, I am also offering a New Year's Day gathering on Zoom (read on for full details below) where we can explore 'weaving the new' together and welcome in 2021.

As I begin reflecting for myself on this year and all that has been happening, so much has changed. Looking back, around this time last year I was writing the book 'The Powerful Voice of the Quiet Ones - Reflections on an Introvert's Life', which I published in January. For me, it feels a whole new chapter in my life has emerged since then. Such a strange year: In January I hosted the first of the six workshops scheduled at the Blue Lotus Therapy Centre, and intended to flow right through the year to November as usual. That day in January turned out to be my last in-person workshop for the foreseeable future.

In February I travelled to Glastonbury to celebrate my friend Soleira's 70th birthday along with other dear friends. In March I exhibited at the Cornwall Business Show. That was on 12th and we were already aware that we shouldn't exchange hugs or even shake hands. Big announcements were imminent from the UK government, and the show closed early.

Since then I have barely been anywhere except in the local area. I was hugely grateful when lock-down was eased a little and I was able to drive the few miles to my favourite places to walk on the cliffs.  And yet, life has continued. I am so lucky that most of my work was already online or easily transferable. Death continued also. I have not as yet lost anyone close to me to the virus, and yet the deaths that have occurred are made so much more difficult to cope with by the circumstances.  At the same time, I honour every one, every person who has left their body this year (for me personally, that is two family members and several dear friends), and celebrate the gifts they gave me . And still do in the memories and insights that arise in reflection.

Weaving the shadow and light together without judgement of which events could be seen as 'shadow' and which as 'light' has been my way to cope. One of the participants in my groups this year recently sent me this quote: “The brighter the light, the darker the shadow.” from Carl Jung. My first response, as I write now, is to think of the bright lights of those I have lost in the physical world, who are still there, even if not in body, and who I believe are simply shining in a different way. Does that mean that the shadow of my grief is 'darker'? Deep maybe, not necessarily 'dark' - although it is all an interpretation. I find it hard to separate my own assumptions and judgements - those ones so automatic that somehow represent 'light' as 'good' and 'dark' as 'bad'.

If I have learned anything, I know that is not true. One small example is that I love very dark chocolate, and don't like white chocolate at all..... Other people may feel the opposite. And that does not mean one is good and the other bad - just a matter of taste. (Maybe not the best of examples....it could be argued neither is good!)

The beautiful deep shadows in this photograph would not be there without the light...

Reflections: The Light Within
New Artwork 

Dare to Blossom Monthly Circle on Zoom 4th December
From my archives: December titles poem
Two free Taster Circles and the new 2021 programmes

Reflections: The Light Within

What a year 2020 has been.... for all of us, wherever we are in the world. If you have been directly affected by the pandemic, I send love for you and your family.
There have been so many words written about all that, I don't think I will add any more. Instead, when wondering about the theme for this month, as we approach midwinter in the northern hemisphere, midsummer in the south, those words "The Light Within" popped into my mind.

You may well have seen this painting of mine before, possibly more than once. I have various titles for it - sometimes "The Tree of Light", and at others, "The Light Within". It emerged from play with paint and meditation at a workshop with my friend, the talented artist Annie B Roberts At first I had no idea that it would become a tree. When I took the painting home and looked at it for a while, I decided to frame it. For me it signifies simply being, simply allowing the light within to shine naturally out into the world.

New offering: a 'pay as you go' monthly Zoom event, 6th November
From my archives: November titles poem
Reflections: Autumn and Rebirth

New offering: a 'pay as you go' monthly Zoom Dare to Blossom Circle

So, I am sharing this new offering at the top of the newsletter today, as the first event is at the beginning of the month: I have been asked to set up a 'light touch' circle - one where there is no commitment to a regular private group as with my in-depth circles. Of course people receive big insights from those, and - it is not always the time to do that in practical terms. Also, many people, especially those of you who subscribe to my monthly newsletter, do not wish to be involved in groups on Facebook.

This is simply a monthly Zoom gathering, an invitation to a 'pay as you go' monthly circle on Friday mornings at 11.00 am UK time. The fee is £20. As well as taking part, you will receive a photo of the cards I draw for you, and a recording of the call (only sent to those  who are present live). Full details and booking are here, Or simply contact me by replying to this email if you prefer. You can book in advance, or choose to receive an invoice after the event, I will leave that up to you, and trust that if you enjoy the experience you will be happy to offer that in exchange for the love and energy I put into creating the Circle for you.

If it is popular, I hope that a group will gather who would like to meet every month, and I will set up a subscription with a discount for 2021. I have a provisional date of Friday 4th December at 11.00 am UK time for a second meet-up.

Reflections: Weavers of Shadow and Light
From my archives 1: Reflections: the balance of dark and light (June 2016)
From my archives 2: October titles poem
New book collaboration: Love Letters from the Future
One to one Coaching: "Your Powerful Voice" Coaching Programme, special offer held open for you

Reflections: Weavers of Shadow and Light

I know, have always known, that I am a weaver - someone who creates connections for people. Someone who weaves stories in words, through photographs, in art, in energy. And it is only fairly recently that I have come to appreciate how I can use my weaver's skill to help myself, and others, particularly in these strange times we are living through. 

In various conversations and meditations over the last week or so, this phrase arose: "Weavers of Shadow and Light". It has now become the theme for the next Dare to Blossom Circle, running for six weeks from 26th October.

Here is how I began the piece on the website:

If you are here, ready to find out how to become a Weaver of Shadow and Light, know that you are truly already a powerful weaver.

Whether we do this consciously or not, each of us weaves our lives, moment by moment, day by day. Sometimes our weave is unbalanced, distorted even, by the efforts we make to hide those parts of us we feel are wrong, or shameful, or not acceptable. Too much, too little. Too loud, too quiet. Too tall, too short.

We judge ourselves all the time, as we also judge others around us. All of this is natural, and yet, when we become more aware, and consciously choose the threads we choose to weave, we can alter this.

We can welcome all parts of ourselves with love and care. We can weave those 'darker' shades in amongst the light to add depth, to add balance, to add beauty.

Personally, I am often afraid of the dark - whether that is literally the dark of night, or the emotional shadows that I hesitate to uncover.

Yet we cannot be whole without them. I know, have always known, that I am a weaver - someone who creates connections for people. Someone who weaves stories in words, through photographs, in art, in energy. And it is only fairly recently that I have come to appreciate how I can use my weaver's skill to help myself, and others, particularly in these strange times we are living through. 

Reflections: Rest
From my archives: September titles poem
Events and ways to Dare to Blossom: 7/9 new six week programme, and 12/9 a stand-alone workshop, all on Zoom

Reflections: Rest

How interesting. I intended to write about fresh starts this month, about how September feels like a time for that, a stepping into the new...and it will be for many of us. Some will be entering the new academic year, one quite unlike any other for those studying or supporting their family in doing so. September is also a time when, here in Cornwall, it feels as if everyone, everything, breathes a sigh of relief as the weight of people visiting reduces a little.

I have often thought I have heard the land, the earth herself, breathe more easily. I am not sure how it will be this year, if there will still be many more holiday makers here than usual as people choose not to go overseas.

Always, I hope to feel full of energy and enthusiasm as this time begins. The period between summer and the preparations for Christmas, when people may have time to reflect, to think about what they wish to plan for their future. Instead, I find within me (and maybe for you?) a deep exhaustion.

(I have chosen this photo, taken some years ago now in the Chalice Well Gardens in Glastonbury, as the perfect image to inspire me to rest. To imagine sitting here, gently rocking, looking out over the gardens.)

Reflections: Challenges and Changes
From my archives: August titles poem
Events and ways to Dare to Blossom
"The Powerful Voice of the Quiet Ones" signed copy or ebook

Reflections: Challenges and Changes
Some of you already know that my brother Roger died suddenly recently. There is no easy way to share news like that, even when you do not know the person. 

Many of my family subscribe to this newsletter, so I am extending my arms to you again, as we often do, in a big warm virtual hug around the world. And to everyone else who would like a hug too - so many of us have experienced losses of all sorts during this time.

Those of you who have read my recent book "The Powerful Voice of the Quiet Ones" may remember that there I describe my first memory, of being allowed to hold my baby brother in the car on the way home from the hospital. I was two and a half years old, and I loved him immediately.

Roger had a minor heart attack many years ago,I can't remember how many, just that it is more than twenty years. Since then he has been pretty well and yet he went to bed on 8th July and didn't wake up.

Many of us would probably choose that way to go if we could, with no long illness or suffering. For his wife and son, for me, and for the rest of our family, it is of course a huge shock, an immense change. Add to that all the challenges of it happening at this time, when here in the UK we are still in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, and it feels doubly difficult at times. We are lucky in that we are allowed to attend his funeral, along with up to thirty people. This will be on Friday this week.

Life is always about challenges, and about changes. Even though some of those feel impossible to deal with, to rise above, I know, for me, they can bring the biggest personal growth. Or to put it another way, the greatest insights into my personal power within.

"Green Sprite" - shared here simply because I love this painting.