Almost Wordless + Retreat Updates!

Hello lovely.  I’m just back from my massage, high on endorphins and low on words. This was my treat to myself post completing my book manuscript.  That 200 page baby is in.  Wowsa.  Someday soon I’ll tell you about my final freakout and the encouragement of soul friends which got me through it, but for now I’m kind of sick of words.  So for this week I just want to share a few of my recent favorite pics: bowls of fruit that make me feel abundant,  my little one showcasing her art skillz at a city wide show and if you can’t read my gilded temporary tattoo message it says “Keep Writing Forward.” If we aren’t already I’d love to connect with you on Instagram and Facebook, where these were first shared. I’m wondering where do you find #everydaybeauty?

Also as I mentioned last week my developmental editor suggested that I do a beta test of my book ideas before publishing later this year which I think is such a fun idea.  So I am going to be offering a special coaching program in April to share this whole new body of work!  It will include both virtual and in person components as well as group and one on one coaching.  Plus the opportunity to be an early reader for excerpts of my new book!  I’m soooo excited to share my eight step formula for how to unlock your greatest professional and creative contributions and flourish in your personal life.  It is going to be a very limited offering so if you are interested reply to this post to let me know and I’ll share the details!

xoxo Courtney

 



Just one spot remains at my Flourish retreat! – Will you be joining Jeni and other amazing women in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico?  If you’ve been flirting with the idea I’d encourage you to go ahead and sign up now!  It is shaping up to be a magical group of women and I would so love for you to be a part of it. Plus I’ll be teaching this 8 step Flourish content live for the first time!  Let’s run away to Mexico together!

xxo Courtney

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching.  She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School,  is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives.  She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

Dissolve The Box

When I was a teenager I used to really resent those Cosmo quizzes which would tell you your innate style.  The questions always felt so formulaic and I struggled to answer them accurately.  This weekend would I rather A) head out into nature in cutoffs, hair tousled and no makeup or B) get dressed up and go out with the ladies?

Um – both please!?

As a girl I had a love of fancy and sparkly things.  Then as I hit my Women’s Studies phase at 18 I cut off all my hair and dyed it red.

The night of my wedding in Nicaragua I had to send friends out to get more razors so I could finish shaving my legs and don my handmade wedding dress.  After two years in the Peace Corps living on a volcano I had gone pretty natural.

The point of all of this oversharing?  Those boxes –- nature girl, fancy girl — they don’t give me the space to live my right life, which includes both.

Only now as I land in my forties I feel the integration of these pieces.  My love of a stylish pair of boots and a good haircut can coexist with my appreciation of the outdoors.  Red nail polish can go with an afternoon gardening.  I don’t have to choose.

The spiritual masters call this frame of mind “non-dual seeing.”  It is about learning to see behind and around that very human impulse to put things in either/or boxes.  It is not so much blowing the boxes up as dissolving them into a greater force field.  Or realizing they were never really there.

I’ve been alert to this dissolving of dualism over the past few weeks as I have been in my creativity cave writing a book.  (Only two chapters remain, can you believe it?!!)  Next week I go to a special retreat with fellow authors hosted by my book coach where together we will celebrate our completed manuscripts and learn next steps!

Writing this book I’ve felt an integration within myself which I haven’t before experienced, at least not to this degree.  I’ve always struggled with feeling a certain heat and ambition internally, a desire to make a mark, to make the world better in some concrete and demonstrable way.  Yet the rub comes from the fact that my nervous system is pretty sensitive.  I have the opposite of what you would call thick skin.  Plus I’m a serious introvert.  An INFP on the Myers Briggs Scale.  A dreamer.

So how to create the impact I crave?  Clearly networking events are out of the question as they make me want to throw up.  It turns out that writing a book is a wonderful way for me to live into my own desire for impact and to be of service and do it from the comfort of my very own home!  I don’t have to pretend to be any different than I am.  I can be both ambitious and introverted.  Leader and gentle.  Doer and dreamer.

I wonder… what boxes do you have yourself in?  Is there a way to dissolve them so you can be your more spacious self?

Also I want to let you know that my developmental editor suggested that I do a beta test of my book ideas before publishing later this year.  Which is an idea I love!

So I am going to be offering a coaching program in April to share this whole new body of work!  It will include both virtual and in person components as well as group and one on one coaching.  Plus the opportunity to be an early reader for excerpts of my new book!  I’m soooo excited to share my eight step formula for how to unlock your greatest professional and creative contributions and flourish in your personal life.  It is going to be a very limited offering so I’m giving a shout out today to tell you about it. It is only for women who want to learn the formula for how to slow down and up your impact (you don’t have to choose!)  If you are interested email support@courtneypinkerton.com and I’ll give you the inside scoop!

Love and all the good,

Courtney

The Early Bird price for my Flourish Retreat expires next Friday March 17th at midnight and we only have four spaces remaining.  My retreats tend to sell out so if you have been flirting with the idea I’d encourage you to go ahead and take advantage of this $200 savings and reserve your spot today.  It is shaping up to be a magical group of women and I would so love for you to be a part of it.  Plus I’ll be teaching this 8 step Flourish content live for the first time!  Let’s run away to Mexico together!

xxo Courtney

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living.  Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives.  She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

Vintage Bird: What to Do When the Wheels Come Off

Before we get to the vintage pic of me from the Peace Corps just a quick note to say hello from deep in my creativity cave. I’m half way through my first book! Six chapters submitted — each of them medicine for busy women who want to slow down while upping their impact and capacity to make a difference. Yay. Yay. YAY. I’m so excited to share and teach more about these keys which have changed my life and way of working.

Also I want to let you know I am going to be opening some special slots later in March for a new online coaching program for women where I will be rolling out this fresh content on how to slow down in a way that sticks and simultaneously share your most valuable gifts with the world. Space for this offering will be limited. It is a beta test recommended by my book coach and your feedback and experiences (with your permission of course) might even make it in the book!

Also I want to update you on the Early Bird price for theFlourish Retreat — a savings of $200. It will expire Friday March 17th. I’ve kept it active for a few extra weeks to give us all some breathing room — I feel like the mom of twins with this book project and international retreat all taking shape at the same time! If you have any questions or would like help determining if this retreat is a good fit for you, let’s hop on the phone to talk more. Here is the link to schedule your complementary conversation.

Love and all the good!

Courtney

There are moments when life is really intense: when you are integrating a lot of new lessons all at the same time. The above pic with a Peace Corps friend from my first few months in Nicaragua would definitely qualify as such a time in my life. I look back at that picture now and see a woman so tender around the edges. So much to learn!

Often these intense seasons come as part of a transition—when something has come to an end: a relationship, job, educational program or when something new has started: maybe you just had a baby, launched your own biz, or got a hit of clarity about your creative future and decided to jump into a new project.

The wheels come off the bus, so to speak, and you just have to walk up the mountain.

Maybe you feel ill-prepared for the hike you are on.

Or find that your load is too heavy to carry all by yourself.

Working with a new coaching client this week I was searching for a way to describe the benefits of the Enneagram. As any teacher who loves a personal growth tool will tell you… we risk spending too much time describing the tool rather than explaining how it serves people where they are really living. Where they (and we) need insight into those tight places. Like, today.

So here is my attempt to connect the dots.

When you are in the middle of climbing a mountain and feel the strain of the task at hand -– it helps to pause and rest, to take off the backpack, get some bandaids out for your blisters, a long drink of water, and eat a granola bar. And most importantly, take the time to put the pack back on in a way that it doesn’t rub you raw on the assent.

That is a metaphor for what I would describe as the first phase of Enneagram exploration: identifying and recognizing your personality pattern, discovering how to “hold” your personality type in a new way and some immediate, practical resources. This helps you shake off some of those old habits of reacting to life out of fear, shame or anger and almost immediately begins to make the journey less painful.

So if you are climbing a mountain right now… consider how you can resource yourself.

In addition to observing your Enneagram type you might also want to focus on going to bed early, eating lunch outside or in a quiet place, sipping your tea in the morning listening to the birds or attending your favorite yoga class. I know these practices can seem so minor, but exquisite self-care, when you are in the middle of big hike, can make such a huge difference.

Then there are other times in life when you have time and space (or make time and space) to really take off the pack, open it up, spread out all the contents, and identify what you want to keep carrying, what is serving you, and what you need to let go of or replace.

You discern what is truly life-giving to carry and what is extra weight.

This is a process. I have discovered in guiding dozens of women through their transformational journey that six weeks is the minimum amount of time needed to really gracefully open all that up and ultimately put the pack back together in a lighter way.

It takes patience and encouragement plus fresh tools and the perspectives of others outside of your own head to edit all that down.

But seriously, who doesn’t want to be traveling lighter?

My particular mojo in this area is to help people fastrack the process — and to move as efficiently as possible through the “in-between phase.” Because it can feel kind of vulnerable to have your pack opened up and all the contents spread around. Especially if you are already a self-aware woman who has some change to make in the world but are simply going through a growth spurt.

The Enneagram was a lifeline for me as I transitioned five years ago from a salaried job with a lot of stress to starting my own business so that I could have the quality of life I knew I wanted — especially as a mother to three young kids.

My gratitude for the way the Enneagram lead me through that time of transition and left me lighter and cleaner is really the heartbeat of my motivation now as a holistic coach, writer and teacher. It is absolutely the encouragement I hope to offer to you.

Are you climbing up a mountain right now? What makes the pack lighter?

I’d love to hear more about your experiences. Reply here or schedule your conversation to talk more about the Flourish Retreat (where we will be doing a deep Enneagram dive) to see if it could be a fit for you. xo Courtney

You are invited to gather with other women in a home with a gorgeous interior courtyard enjoying a consciously curated experience where alone time is balanced with meaningful conversations and lively small group coaching sessions, where you have time to sit by (or in) a heated pool and journal, to listen to yourself and to be deeply heard, practice yoga (or not), enjoy the daily siesta with an actual nap (because we hear ourselves better when well rested) or by exploring the city on a solo adventure or with new or old friends — drinking up its ancient beauty and marketplaces.

Your experience will also include meal offerings of delicious, fresh local food, (breakfast, lunch and a snack, because you need good nourishment) and teaching sessions on incisive tools for self-awareness including the Enneagram and my 8 Steps to Creating Your Flourish Formula (fresh content from my book!) Evenings are free to explore, to rest, to enjoy local dining, to share, to listen, to read, to write, to get a pedicure or manicure, to buy a fabulous scarf. To drink hot chocolate and crumbly Mexican pastries. To enjoy.

Because beyond all of the beauty around you also hear the invitation to step deeper inside your own interior landscape….. I’m so excited to be sharing this new body of work with you for the first time live in this retreat. You will also be among the first to receive a copy of my new book! Space is limited. Reserve Your Spot Today!

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

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Vintage Bird: On Courage

I’m sharing some favorite vintage blog posts this month while I spend time working on my new book. This is one on courage I need to read again and again. xo Courtney

Lurching forward like a toddler learning to walk—this is how I experience life transitions. It doesn’t feel graceful or balanced and I’m acutely aware of my vulnerability as I lean into each next step. I lurch my way through big things like having a baby or deciding where to plant our family after grad school as well as more quotidian things like offering a new service through Bird in Hand, contending with a neighborhood conflict, or managing my own fatigue in the face of a long to do list and a short night’s sleep.

This weekend I left our three little ones and Richie and headed to a gorgeous retreat center on Bainbridge Island off the coast of Seattle hosted by Courage and Renewal. I was deeply restored by the company of wise guides (including Parker Palmer, a favorite author and wisdom teacher) as well as thoughtful peers.

Parker and Courtney

We read poetry, we walked and talked in the woods, we ate ridiculously good food from the onsite garden (and everything was gluten free!) and we talked about the deep stuff of life: how to find the courage to rise up within ourselves and inhabit our own most beautiful and authentic life. Together we explored how to serve and to love in the multiple roles represented — as educators, ministers, social entrepreneurs, community organizers, foundation directors, writers and artists– and how to continually nourish ourselves as we stand in the “tragic gap” between the present moment and the world as we yearn for it to be.

I left the island with a full heart and a new metaphor from Mark Nepo to describe the art of facing change (which is really the art of living– given that change is a constant):

Salmon have much to teach us about the art of facing things. In swimming up waterfalls, these remarkable creatures seem to defy gravity. It is an amazing thing to behold. A closer look reveals a wisdom for all beings who want to thrive.

What the salmon somehow know is how to turn their underside—from center to tail – into the powerful current coming at them, which hits them squarely and the impact then launches them out and further up the waterfall; to which their reaction is, again, to turn their underside back into the powerful current that, of course, again hits them squarely; and this successive impact launches them further out and up the waterfall. Their leaning into what they face bounces them further and further along their unlikely journey. (From The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have (2000))

Now my people are not fish people. I was reared in a city which rises like cotton stalks from blackland prairie– the historic land of the longhorns– and a climate often dry and hot. Maybe that is why this description struck me with its freshness.

Honestly it is a bit of a revelation to even claim some of my choices as courageous. I tend to look at myself through a pretty critical pair of glasses (which has to do with my Enneagram type but critical self-gazing is a practice many of us share regardless of personality type). When wearing these specs I see myself take a step in a new direction and I’m too busy wishing it had looked like a ballet leap to commend myself for the lurch.

But upon further examination I can see the courage flowing under the surface in such moments. Below the static of anxious thoughts in my head, a squeeze in my heart or tightness in the gut—which seems to be how my body holds the tension of change—I do sense a deeper energy propelling me forward when I honor my core desires and soul truth about the work and life which is called out of me.

I’m no ichthyologist but I imagine it wouldn’t really work if the salmon faced the current with their scaly back– the part of their anatomy more suited to deal with the harshness of a wider world. Somehow it’s the collision between the power inherent in the stream and tender fish belly which propels them onward.

So too in my life I observe this paradox: when I am willing to be vulnerable to the beauty and suffering embedded in the moments of my days and to do the work of positioning myself well a midst these tensions I experience a holy encounter with the unfiltered power of life. This feels simultaneously like a smack to the core and a leap toward home. And then I regain my senses, hone in again on the direction I am called, and position myself for another blow.

Sounds fun, doesn’t it?

If not fun this salmon metaphor strikes me as true. And while it can be hard to see the courage within our own lives I definitely see courage flowing through the lives of the women I work with.  I see it as a coaching client names a dream for a new career which more fully matches her deeper self and take concrete steps in that direction. And when a different client strives to cultivate her children’s sense of mystery and wonder — reaching for an honest answer to their profound questions even as she herself doesn’t have it all figured out.  Women bravely living their own creative tensions.

As Nepo explains: “In order not to be swept away by what the days bring, we, too, must find a way to lean into the forces that hit us so squarely. The salmon offer us a way to face truth without shutting down. They show us how leaning into our experiences, though we don’t like the hit, moves us on.”

Now its not all lounging around and waiting for life to smack you. Salmon tap into a deep inner wisdom and as I understand it work pretty hard to swim the wrong way up the stream to their hatching waters. But when the going gets really rough, when the ascent is impossible to the naked eye, that’s when they rely on the energy of the current rather than their own volition.

What experiences are you leaning into in the stream of your life?

Are you able to identify and align yourself with this deeper energy of courage? 

You know I would love to hear about it.

Warmly,

Courtney

PS. Early Bird pricing for my upcoming Flourish retreat in Mexico expires soon so I’ve set aside some special slots for phone chats next Wednesday, March 1. If you have any questions or would like help discerning if the retreat is a good fit for you, schedule one today. xo Courtney

You are invited to gather with other women in a home with a gorgeous interior courtyard enjoying a consciously curated experience where alone time is balanced with meaningful conversations and lively small group coaching sessions, where you have time to sit by (or in) a heated pool and journal, to listen to yourself and to be deeply heard, practice yoga (or not), enjoy the daily siesta with an actual nap (because we hear ourselves better when well rested) or by exploring the city on a solo adventure or with new or old friends — drinking up its ancient beauty and marketplaces.

Your experience will also include meal offerings of delicious, fresh local food, (breakfast, lunch and a snack, because you need good nourishment) and teaching sessions on incisive tools for self-awareness including the Enneagram and meditation. Evenings are free to explore, to rest, to enjoy local dining, to share, to listen, to read, to write, to get a pedicure or manicure, to buy a fabulous scarf. To drink hot chocolate and crumbly Mexican pastries. To enjoy. Because beyond all of the beauty around you also hear the invitation to step deeper inside your own interior landscape….. I’m so excited to be sharing this new body of work with you for the first time live in this retreat. You will also be among the first to receive a copy of my new book! Space is limited. Reserve Your Spot Today!

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives.  She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

What Cues You to Slow Down? How Good Are You at Ignoring it?


How do you know it is time to slow down?  Do you?

This is one of the themes which has come up interviewing busy women for my book i.e. “Help! I want to slow down but I don’t know how!” Does this resonate for you?

I thought as one first step we might all do a bit of an experiment this week. You don’t have to change anything about your life, but simply notice the cues your body sends up, like red flares in the night, suggesting that you should adjust your pace.  For me the two strongest signs are my right hand getting cold (a classic stress response for me) and shallow breathing which makes me feel all fuzzy.  If I ignore those and press on at warp speed for days or longer, I often end up hurting one of my toes. Catching it or stubbing it on my way around a corner too fast. This whole pattern I have come to recognize… And I have a couple of choices. I can press on, which I have plenty of experience doing.  Or I can notice when the cue is more subtle and take a 5-15 minute break.

Maybe I’m also naturally hungry. Or just need to feel the sun on my face. (Eating lunch outside is one of my favorite “conscious living hacks.” OK I hate the word hacks but you know what i mean: a quick tip which does multiple good things at once.)

Vitamin D, check! Vitamin N (nature) as I watch those lovely swirling swallows, check! Unitasking i.e. eating my lunch without doing anything else, check!

My other current favorite is Five Two Seven breathing. Inhale for a count of five. Hold for two. Exhale for a count of seven. Long slow exhales are calming to the nervous system. It is a great reset. What body signals tell you that your pace is unsustainable? What helps with the reset? I would love to hear, just reply here and let me know. Who knows you might make it into the book!

Also I want to let you know that I’m going to be taking some weeks off blogging while I care for my book baby. During this time I will be sharing some of my favorite Vintage Bird Posts. I hope you enjoy them! And while I’m not currently taking new clients I will be opening my coaching calendar again once the manuscript is done mid march.

xxo Courtney

(Photo Credit – Eileen West)

P.S.  Did you hear about my referral bonus for the retreat in Mexico?

Step one: Share with your lovelies + invite them to Flourish on my behalf since you know them and you know me and that is the best kind of connection.

Step two: If one of them decides to attend I reach out to you to offer a bonus coaching session and taste of the content from my book/retreat which is my new Flourish Formula. (8 steps which enable you to make your greatest creative/professional contribution and have a thriving personal life.) I love growing relationally so I’d be honored if you would forward this email on to a friend.  (All the details about the retreat are below.)

You are invited to gather with other women in a home with a gorgeous interior courtyard enjoying a consciously curated experience where alone time is balanced with meaningful conversations and lively small group coaching sessions, where you have time to sit by (or in) a heated pool and journal, to listen to yourself and to be deeply heard, practice yoga (or not), enjoy the daily siesta with an actual nap (because we hear ourselves better when well rested) or by exploring the city on a solo adventure or with new or old friends — drinking up its ancient beauty and marketplaces.

Your experience will also include meal offerings of delicious, fresh local food, (breakfast, lunch and a snack, because you need good nourishment) and teaching sessions on incisive tools for self-awareness including the Enneagram and meditation. Evenings are free to explore, to rest, to enjoy local dining, to share, to listen, to read, to write, to get a pedicure or manicure, to buy a fabulous scarf. To drink hot chocolate and crumbly Mexican pastries. To enjoy. Because beyond all of the beauty around you also hear the invitation to step deeper inside your own interior landscape….. I’m so excited to be sharing this new body of work with you for the first time live in this retreat. You will also be among the first to receive a copy of my new book! Space is limited. Reserve Your Spot Today!

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives.  She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

My Book Freak Out + How You Can Help. Early Bird Retreat Discount Extended!

“Are you sure you should be doing that?” My husband inquires peering into my home studio. “Telling everyone on social media that you don’t know who your book is for…. is that really a good idea?”

This after a grueling 36 hour period in which I wrote and rewrote a draft of my ideal reader — basically a meditation on the one woman my book is a love letter to — and wouldn’t stop talking about this exercise from my book coach. The idea is that you go deep. You make it personal, like Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet. And in the process you integrate your head knowing into your heart. You build trust with your reader. You meet them in the pain they currently are experiencing and you go from there and explain the way forward.

However, what was happening for me was a big freak out. I’d been told “you are already too big — already crafting the movement! We need to laser in and find those 12 women who will tell 12 women so it can grow from there.” Guilty! In addition to being a recovering overachiever  I’m a recovering Change the Worlder. Not that there is anything wrong with wanting to change the world. In fact I think we may need more of it. But like all good things it can also be hijacked by our egos and end up more a weight around our necks then the path to liberation we (supposedly) are leading others toward.

This ironically is what my book is about.

And where you come in. As those of you who connect with me on social media know… I need some help. And that is exactly what I told my husband. “I know what I am doing now.” i.e. “You may have been watching me spin for 36 hours but this is what freedom tastes like. Letting people in. Not pretending to have it all figured out. Offering my piece of the puzzle out to my friends and tribe of beautiful birders (that is you btw) and inviting in the feedback.” It is as true for you as it is for me — though our crazy obsessed-with-looking-good-and keeping-it-together-culture will have you believe otherwise.

So below I’ve repasted my question from Facebook. If you have a free moment and this book topic resonates for you I would so welcome a word, a phrase, a paragraph, some reflections. I have already been moved to chills and tears by some of what has come back to me. Clearly we are not alone in this struggle. So if we could all work together to help me laser in on how to talk about it in natural way to someone new to the conversation, that would be a huge gift.

Also the Early Bird special for Flourish, my retreat in San Miguel is extended.  I heard back from many who just needed some breathing room to fit the pieces together. And I needed some breathing room to followup and share on social media the way I desired before Early Bird expires.  So that price is there for you through February.  At this point the retreat is almost half-filled. So if you want to come I so hope you will go ahead and reserve one of the remaining 7 spots.  Also I want to let you know I’ve been having some techy problems with my email (if that weird formatting overlay is happening for you today I’m so sorry. I’m on to Mailchimp about it). Once I get that sorted I’ll be sharing the fun video from my Zoom Q & A call plus other followup emails about the retreat + details about a referral bonus (for those of you who can’t make it but invite a friend.)

Love + All the Good,

Courtney

PS  Read on for how you can help + reply here with your thoughts! Who knows you might even make it into my book!

Here is what we know:

I am writing a book for recovering overachievers.

Not just any overachievers — do-gooder women who to change the world but discover unhappily in the process of attempting to do so that if they are not careful their passion to make a difference will eat up their whole lives.

So I know that my book is a guide for how to sync up the inner resources to be able to make your greatest contribution (creatively, in your work etc) And have a beautiful, fulfilling personal life. A whole life. Which btw I think is a really important “feminine” value we could use more of right about now… Not compartmentalizing. But owning all of you (mom, messy human, secret soap-maker, the works!) even in your public or real world “zone of genius.”

So…. here is what I don’t know. How would my ideal reader describe her problem in her own words?

What would she (or you) look to a book to help with?

The best I can come up with so far is she feels squeezed and probably has a vague, guilty sense she should be meditating or doing something “centering” to help all the pieces of her life hang together better.

But I need to be waaaay more specific. (Remember stern talking to from Book Coach?!)

If this resonates with you (and you would even like to read such a book) could you tell me what you would be searching for to help you in your situation?

Or how you would wrap words around what feels out of whack in your life when in “overachiever” mode?

And where you look or have looked in the past for help.

Any comments, ideas, phrases, fragments welcome– the more informal the better. How you would talk to a girlfriend about your struggle.

Just imagine you could sit down right next to me in one of my new favorite places, the botanical gardens in San Miguel de Allende and tell me all about it. Seriously I would love to hear.

And before you write a single word thank you! Thanks for reading. Thanks for encouraging. Thanks for your ideas. We can’t do this kind of work alone. Of this I am certain.

xxxo Courtney

You are invited to gather with other women in a home with a gorgeous interior courtyard enjoying a consciously curated experience where alone time is balanced with meaningful conversations and lively small group coaching sessions, where you have time to sit by (or in) a heated pool and journal, to listen to yourself and to be deeply heard, practice yoga (or not), enjoy the daily siesta with an actual nap (because we hear ourselves better when well rested) or by exploring the city on a solo adventure or with new or old friends — drinking up its ancient beauty and marketplaces.

Your experience will also include meal offerings of delicious, fresh local food, (breakfast, lunch and a snack, because you need good nourishment) and teaching sessions on incisive tools for self-awareness including the Enneagram and dream analysis. Evenings are free to explore, to rest, to enjoy local dining, to share, to listen, to read, to write, to get a pedicure or manicure, to buy a fabulous scarf. To drink hot chocolate and crumbly Mexican pastries. To enjoy.

Because beyond all of the beauty around you also hear the invitation to step deeper inside your own interior landscape….. I’m so excited to be sharing this new body of work with you for the first time live in this retreat. You will also be among the first to receive a copy of my new book! Space is limited. Reserve Your Spot Today! 

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com

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You are Invited to Flourish A Retreat for Women in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico this May

Have you ever peeked inside some fabulous gate or stone hallway to an interior courtyard and wondered what is going on in there?

Thought – “I wish I could go inside” or “What if I lived there?”

This is your opportunity to come into such a space.

Literally to put yourself in San Miguel de Allende, a town replete with hidden courtyards and lime trees blooming year round and fountains and bougainvillea blossoms raining down from every side.

To gather with other women in such a home enjoying a consciously curated experience where alone time is balanced with meaningful conversations and lively small group coaching sessions, where you have time to sit by (or in) a heated pool and journal, to listen to yourself and to be deeply heard, practice yoga (or not), enjoy the daily siesta with an actual nap (because we hear ourselves better when well rested) or by exploring the city on a solo adventure or with new friends — drinking up its ancient beauty and marketplaces.

Your experience will also include meal offerings of delicious, fresh local food sourced from a nearby organic farm, (breakfast, lunch and a snack, because you need good nourishment) and teaching sessions on incisive tools for self-awareness including the Enneagram, meditation and dream analysis. Evenings are free to explore, to rest, to enjoy San Miguel dining, to share, to listen, to read, to write, to get a pedicure or manicure, to buy a fabulous scarf. To drink hot chocolate and crumbly Mexican pastries. To enjoy.

Because beyond all of the beauty around you also hear the invitation to step deeper inside your own interior landscape.

Like the plain stone facades of homes which belie their luscious interior, as women we also sometimes feel like we are wearing stone: one part protection from other’s judgments (or our perceptions of their critique) another part a slow thickening of the skin which comes with ignoring our own body and soul needs in little and big ways in our service of others.

There is another way…

One which doubles down on your feminine knowing. Where you can be authentic with yourself and others and design your own custom formula for the life you desire from the inside out. And (here is the surprising bit) discover that in so doing you are more of service than ever before.

I want to issue a personal invitation to my upcoming event Flourish — A Retreat for Women May 4-7 in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. 

Click on the video above to learn more.

I am also hosting a Zoom call at 12 Noon CST Tuesday February 7 to answer any questions + talk further. (Call-in details below)

Space is limited for this boutique gathering: our VIP spots have already filled as have two additional retreat spots so we have space for 8 more women. If you are feeling like one of those spots is for you I encourage you to check out all the details below and register. My retreat at Ghost Ranch last year sold out, so I hope you take advantage of your Early Bird status (which saves you $200) and grab your space in this unique gathering today!

Keep reading for all the juicy details and photos (the best part) plus your link to register.

All the good,

Courtney

PS I also offer a friend’s referral bonus of $100 and a convenient payment plan which allows you to secure your spot today and space out payments. xo
I’m so excited to be sharing a new body of work for the first time at this retreat which is all about how to generate our most dynamic contributions via the (counter-intuitive) choice of creating space for stillness, renewal, and soul in everyday life. You will also be the first to receive a copy of my new book (which this content is drawn from)!

In addition to the teaching + coaching sessions, guided meditations, siesta time and other free time to lounge by the pool, yoga and delicious local food a percentage of your registration fee includes a donation to support the work of Via Organica, a local organic farm which teaches sustainable agriculture.  

The ambiance created by the sounds of chirping birds, church bells ringing, and the beautiful bougainvillea-lined street enhance this home which has been newly expanded and remodeled by a master architect.

Located just three blocks from the Jardin (the main plaza) in downtown San Miguel de Allende (SMA) Casa Suspiro del Pueblito is a gem. This beautiful home is laid out across two courtyards, in true San Miguel Colonial style. The first vibrant courtyard is centered around an old stone fountain and boasts brightly flowered vines. The second, larger courtyard, is serene with towering stone walls, a beautiful heated pool, relaxing waterfall, and fragrant flowers throughout. All of this is overlooked from the spacious indoor/outdoor room with large fireplace — the perfect place to relax and enjoy.

With sparkling blue skies, rooftop terraces, and authentic Mexican hospitality San Miguel is a UNESCO World-Heritage site. An art and cultural gem, during your exploration of its cobblestone streets you can enjoy colonial architecture, contemporary art galleries, and traditional craft markets. During your free time (or better yet stay an extra day!) visit a nearby hotsprings, a botanical garden or enjoy a massage or other treatment at a local spa. (We have recommendations, inquire for details!)

Photo credit Eileen West. www.westofwhimsy.com


Our retreat starts at 5:00PM on Thursday May 4 with an informal gathering, meditation and opportunity to meet the other participants over bites and drinks. We conclude Sunday May 7 with a special morning session and meditation ending at 10AM so you can travel or better yet stay for another day of explorations.

The retreat includes breakfast, lunch and snacks as well as my new book and a folder full of juicy resources + other treats.

Airfare is not included. The best airport to fly into usually is Leon’s Del Bajio International Airport (BJX). There is a shuttle service BajioGo from there to San Miguel (a 90 minute drive.) You can make reservations online for the shuttle for around $40.

For accommodations during the retreat you have two options:

Your Early Bird rate covers your full retreat experience with breakfast and lunch together, group coaching + teaching sessions on the Enneagram, Dream Analysis and more, lounging or swimming at the house during the day, a copy of my book, written materials and other treats plus the option of purchasing two additional coaching sessions.

This choice gives you flexibility in your accommodations. You select and book your room from one of three boutique hotels/bed and breakfasts within a matter of blocks from the home with high recommendations and a range of pricing options:

Hotel Options (These all come recommended by San Miguel natives)

Casa Carly (Most Affordable Option. Eight “Casitas” of varying sizes on property. About a ten minute walk from the retreat house.)

Casa Calderoni (Cute, Mid-Range Option. Next door to the retreat house.)

Casa Clandestino (Boutique Hotel with a more contemporary style + luxury and a range of suites available. About a twelve minute walk to the retreat house.)

Or you can always book via AirBnB, there are many fun options in the city available.

The VIP Offer includes staying in the retreat house with your own private bedroom and bath. It also includes two additional coaching sessions (one before, one after the retreat via phone) plus the option of staying an extra night on Wednesday May 3rd. This is a great option for someone wanting more relaxation time or to to create their own writing retreat. (Katie, a gifted life-coach and my assistant for this gathering and I will be in the house with you the night before but we won’t bother you other than to inquire if you need more coffee, tea or chocolate!) It is also a great value as it includes a four night stay in a luxury home plus two coaching sessions ($425 value.) Also a fun option for friends who want to stay in the house together. I only have two VIP spaces so please register as soon as possible if this is the option for you! Price is $1997. The VIP Slots are filled for this year.

Space is limited to 12 women and 4 of those spots have already filled.  My last retreat at Ghost Ranch sold out, so I encourage you to secure your spot today by clicking the “I’m in!” button below. The Early Bird Offer expires on Friday February 10 2017.

Here is what some participants at previous retreats or live teaching events have had to say:

“ALL I COULD WANT IS MORE.”

I’ve been to many trainings and I can say I have never felt so loved and cared for… All of the time and intention you put into the retreat were noticed and appreciated. All I could want is MORE.

Aimee, Marketing Coach + Speaker, www.authenticarticulations.com

“COURTNEY BRINGS EXPERTISE WHILE BEING APPROACHABLE.”

You have such a beautiful teaching presence. I find it absolutely amazing at how you manage to bring full expertise and skill, all the while being approachable and invitational and empowering. You are a true teacher. Also, I loved hearing you speaking Spanish!

Skyler McGee, Visual Artist

“ONE OF THE BEST GIFTS I HAVE EVER GIVEN MYSELF.”

Karen Cameron, Quilter + Non-Profit Leader

“TOP FIVE OF BEST PROGRAMS WE HAVE EVER DONE.”

I’m at a loss for just the right words to tell you how exactly right your message was. I have heard so many positive comments and knew we got it “right”. To me, this was in the top 5 of the best programs we have ever done. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Jerri, Generations Director at Methodist Health System

*A percentage of your registration fee goes to support a non profit local organic farm in San Miguel promoting sustainable growing practices.

Have More Questions? This Section is For You!

Join me for a Zoom call — which you can join via phone or video — on Tuesday February 7th at 1PM Eastern / 12PM Central / 11AM Mountain /10AM Pacific.

You can join from your computer, Iphone or tablet if you would like to see my face and share yours via video. Or you can just call in via the telephone, whichever you prefer! Link and number provided below:

Join from your computer here

Or iPhone one-tap (US Toll)

Or Telephone:
Dial: +1 408 638 0968 (US Toll) or +1 646 558 8656 (US Toll)
Meeting ID: 381 121 106
International numbers available here:

Read on for some common questions answered:

Q: Where do I fly to?

A. The best airport to fly into is Leon’s Del Bajio International Airport (BJX). There are numerous direct flights to Leon from major cities in the U.S. including Dallas, Houston and Los Angeles and the airport is serviced by American Airlines, Volaris, Aeromexico, Interjet and more. If you are able to stay a little longer, like Wednesday to Monday (and if you can, you totally should!) the price is often discounted.

We will be in Mexico for Cinco de Mayo! Totally fun! But also a good reminder to go ahead and book your flight once you register since it is a holiday weekend.

Q: How do I get from the airport to the retreat house or my hotel?

A. There is a shuttle service BajioGo from the airport to San Miguel (a 90 minute drive.) You can make reservations online for the shuttle for around $40. You do not have to speak Spanish. They hold up a sign for you and the airport is quite small. They will then take you directly to either our retreat house or your boutique hotel. (The retreat begins at 5pm Thursday May 4 with bites and drinks + our opening session.) When you reserve the shuttle you put in your destination address and they deliver you to your door!

Depending what day/time you arrive there will likely be other women attending the retreat on your shuttle as well as other interesting folks. San Miguel attracts a fun and diverse crowd in my experience. I’ve met other coaches, artists and more on the shuttle.

Q: Are VIP Slots still available?

A. The VIP slots are filled.

Q: Do I book my hotel myself?

A. Yes. Your Early Bird rate covers your full retreat experience with breakfast and lunch together, group coaching + teaching sessions on the Enneagram, Dream Analysis and more, lounging or swimming at the house during the day, a copy of my book, written materials and other treats plus one bonus coaching session via phone either before or after our gathering.

This option gives you flexibility in your accommodation choice. Also I don’t normally offer one coaching session at a time (clients usually invest in six or ten session bundles) so this is a great way to get a taste of coaching and to reinforce and integrate the lessons from the retreat once you are back at home. Early Bird price is $997 (a discount of $200 from the regular registration rate.) There is also a payment plan of four monthly payments of $250.

Hotel Options (These all come recommended by San Miguel natives)

Casa Carly (Most Affordable Option. Eight “Casitas” of varying sizes on property. About a ten minute walk from the retreat house.)

Casa Calderoni (Cute, Mid-Range Option. Next door to the retreat house.)

Casa Clandestino (Boutique Hotel with a more contemporary style and a range of suites available. About a twelve minute walk to the retreat house.)

Or you can always book via AirBnB, there are many fun options in the city available.

Q. What is the plan for the food?

A. The plan for the food is delicious, local and organic from Via Organica, a local cafe connected to a local nonprofit organic farm that supports sustainable agriculture. (A percentage of your registration fee also goes in a donation to support their work.) I’m very into good food and attending to folks with diet preferences, so there will be gluten free, vegetarian and other options. Just let me know what you need! (I’ll send a brief survey after registration to get more details.)

Q. I am coming by myself. Will there be groups of people getting together for dinner and other outings? 

A. Absolutely! Most participants come by themselves and many make lasting friendships. There is a friend duo coming this year who met last year at Ghost Ranch and have stayed in touch throughout the year and decided to register together for this year’s event. It is a great space to meet other women. Katie (who is on my team for this event and also a life coach) is what I call a “hospitality goddess.” So she is extra good at making sure everyone knows about outing options and has a buddy or group to join if they are looking for companionship. You can also feel totally comfortable enjoying some alone time. Often women go back to their room and nap, especially on the first day it is just what their body needs!

Q: Can I bring a friend?

A. Yes! In fact I have a friend referral bonus so if you do bring a friend let me know and I’ll send you $100 as a thank you for introducing her to our retreat.

Q: Does this offer expire?

A. Yes the insider offer has been extended and expires Friday February 3 when I open registration to my full list. This offer went out only to my “insiders” those who have been to a live event before, coaching clients, those who joined one of my eCourses or classes and others who reached out to me about this event. I am offering it to you so that you have the first opportunity to join (my last retreat at Ghost Ranch did sell out) and with some extras including the bonus coaching session for the Early Bird offer, which I won’t be offering after tonight.

Q. Can you swim in the pool?

A. Absolutely! I hope you do. It is heated.

Q. What kind of things should I bring?

A. Bring a journal and a good pen, a camera, a dream journal if you have one dedicated to that purpose (or want to pick one up.) If you are an artist you may want to bring art supplies as well. The light in San Miguel is magic! I’ll be providing you with a folder with lots of juicy materials and the copy of my book either in electronic or print form so you will have lots to reflect on. But I always think it is best to integrate written material into your real life (not the “training folder” on your shelf that you never pick up again.) So if you have a journal or notebook you keep your life notes or inspiration in I’d certainly encourage you to bring that.

Also bring those TLC items which make you feel really well-cared for when you travel. For me this is a mini diffuser and some favorite essential oils, my Neti pot (too much information?!) and some favorite tea. I’ll be providing you with great coffee and tea and meals and snacks but if you have any specific other things, a favorite scarf which makes you feel cozy, you get the idea, definitely bring those.

I’ll be sending out more details about what to pack and wear to participants as well. San Miguel is in the mountains so layers are good.

Q. I am an artist and I want to bring paints. Should I pack those or can I pick them up in San Miguel?

A. San Miguel is an art town! I would definitely encourage you to bring whatever supplies you would enjoy. I would check with your particular airlines around any restrictions on paints or anything flammable. There is an art supply store in San Miguel as well if you need to pick anything up.

El Pato
http://www.directoriosanmiguel.com/ad/13/artist-materials-and-tools/el-pato

Q. I’m totally into it but not sure I am not sure I have the time or can afford it…

A. First of all I totally trust your sense of right timing and if this is the right investment for you. That said, here are a couple of strategies for making it more affordable:

Opt for the Early Bird payment plan. This lets you space out the payments over four months at $250/month.
One of the 3 hotel options is cute and more affordable. It includes little “casitas” on the property which start at $85/night. http://www.casacarlysanmiguel.com and Lastly bring a friend! I’m offering a friend referral bonus of $100 so that would bring your price down to $897 for the event and meals.(Which again you could space out.) You would still have dinners on your own but a whole range of options there, including some which are super cheap and yummy. Plus you can share a room!

Also I want to mention that it is definitely a mindset shift sometimes to invest in ourselves to this degree. My coaching journey began with someone paying for me to go on a retreat or I’m sure I wouldn’t have even gotten started.

Since then I have invested in many coaches at many price points. It is always a totally personal decision but I find that with this kind of inner reflection it is so wonderful when we as women are able to invest in an experience like San Miguel because we show up really fully for ourselves inside of it. So then the learning and “ahas” are all the more powerful.

Q. I am interested in visiting the hot springs. Where can I get more information about that:

yes and yes and yes!! Definitely recommend it.

La Gruta Open Wed -Sun 7AM -5PM.

Watch this fun video.

and Escondido Place Closed Tuesdays. 8AM-5:30PM

So there you go! All you wanted to know and more.
Please email cp@courtneypinkerton.com with any additional questions. My intention is to for you feel totally resourced and informed and fully invited to join us in Mexico! Ready to Go? Secure your spot and register here.

xxo Courtney

Photo Credits from Eileen West of westofwhimsy.com, www.homeaway.com, and Richard Amory.

Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.
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My Favorite Question + Photo Reveal for Retreat in Mexico

My favorite question when meeting someone new has long been “What have you been loving lately?”* I think it gets around two big roadblocks: our over-emphasis on work i.e. “What do you do?” and the superficial exchange i.e. “How are you?” which tends to elicit a “fine” regardless of the deeper reality.

But lately I’m flirting with a new question – “What have you been creating lately?” Because after a week in which I hosted my Soulpreneur Virtual Retreat (with women birthing new writing, business dreams and more) and spent most of the rest of the time crafting the invitation to my upcoming retreat in Mexico I feel like I am on very intimate terms with the creative process. It is all I want to talk about.

Not the whole arc of it, which as you know can take months or years. But the acute, most intense phase. Where you are literally bringing something through the veil from the world of ideas, dreams, intentions to the material plane aka “the real world” where other people can interact with it. (This doorway from San Miguel reminds me of such a liminal zone.)

One thing which confused me for years about the creative process is its relationship with our own stress response.

With coaching clients and in my own life I work with the body compass. Essentially the language of the body is expansion when pointed in a direction which aligns for you or contraction when you are making a decision which doesn’t jive with your essential self.

We all have many layers. Your essential self is that deepest, most truthful part of you whereas your social self is the part which wants to play by the rules and be seen as successful or fitting in. Maybe the easiest explanation of the difference is to simply remember a time when your head was talking you into something because you “should” do it and your gut was protesting fiercely.

But decoding the body compass is not always that simple. Because we don’t usually have a lot of practice listening to it. In fact we are taught in school and many families to override the body nudges and to hold in or push down the somatic or emotional feelings that get in the way of moving ahead.

But, and this I think is the really interesting part, there is another way our body compass read gets muddy.

When we are actually stretching into a really juicy, brave, interesting decision and in so doing trip our own stress response.

So on the deepest level your body/soul voice may be saying hell yes! And your poor amygdala which is always on the lookout for threats interprets all that extra energy coursing through your body and the natural dose of fear of the unknown as if it were a tiger about to pounce. Hello fight or flight response!

As my favorite Ennea teacher reminds me, the body “boots us out of presence” on both ends of the continuum: when something really threatening is happening and when something completely amazing is happening that is more than we let ourselves imagine for our lives aka when we are scarecited!

So….the next time you are ready to sit down and write something brave or invest some significant cash securing a fabulous home in Mexico based on your heart/gut sense that women do in fact want to travel internationally to retreat with you, or otherwise create in a way which stretches your comfort –- remember this conversation. And see if you can attend to the extra support you might need to move the energy of your fight/flight/freeze response through your tissues.

How to Move Your Stress Energy While Creating? 

This whole process of pulling together details for the international retreat has gone slower than my social self would have liked. Communicating with the international host and getting the contract signed, working with my VA to confirm availability and details about the boutique hotels near the retreat venue (for those not staying in the house), making a video to invite you into the retreat.

But it was being born in its own time. And as I shared this week on social media I required frequent breaks to bring this retreat vision through to the other side. I even started running again (normally I’m a walker) just out of the sheer need to discharge some of my excitement! Talking with friends and getting coaching was also vital. As was making out with my husband. And acupuncture and Chinese herbs. Eating warm lunches.

All of these help move the extra energy of creation through my tissues and send the message to my body and nervous system that “Hey, we got this!”

I’m working on so many fun details regarding my retreat including a payment plan for those of you who would like to space out your investment in monthly chunks. Here are some photos to whet the appetite:



See?!! I literally fall asleep sometimes just feeling like I’m already in this house with those of you who likewise know that it is just what you need: to stretch yourself, to reawaken your senses, to nourish yourself on the deepest level.

Maybe that sounds weird but I think that is part of the process of conscious creation. Becoming the person who wrote the book, who hosted the international retreat or who created a life that she loved. And taking small actions today from that place, while taking care of your nervous system along the way.

So friends, next week. Next week.

Warmly, Courtney
PS I do have a special offer for those who can handle my “rough cut” and who expressed an interest in this retreat either via social media or attending a previous one. If this is you but you didn’t yet fill out my survey or otherwise indicate your interest contact me at cp@courtneypinkerton.com and I’ll send you the pre-offer pronto. xo
*Credit to my friend the gifted writer and teacher Sarah Moore for this great question. Photo Credit my fabulous VA and gifted photographer Eileen West.

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Could You Use a Do-Over? New Year Virtual Retreat Details + Big News

Let’s meet in the greenhouse to squeeze some fruit, shall we? This is my vision for the upcoming Soulpreneur virtual retreat this Thursday Jan 26th. A time to check in on what has been growing in your life. Take a bite. See what is ready to be planted in your work, creativity, home and rest. If you feel like the New Year got away from you… this is for you!

I am opening the Soulpreneur Mastermind for 2017 to new members for one week only, so if you are interested I hope you will register today! I have also created a new option where you can get one on one support alongside our regular monthly group call (which in January includes the virtual retreat.)

I also want to let you know that I have some big news coming next week about my Spring Retreat. It is happening in San Miguel de Allende at the most gorgeous house you could imagine. Heated pool, interior courtyard, fabulosity.

It has been a boisterous week as I figured out if all the pieces were going to come together. Oh yes and starting my 9 week “idea to done” book program. I’ve had to use my own soulpreneur skillz (and wise coach friends) to stay connected and hopeful. But now I literally can’t wait to tell you _all_ about it. For now get your passport ready and put the dates May 4-7 on your calendar. And thank you to everyone who completed my online quiz + responded on Facebook with your preferences, that was a huge gift to me in discerning next steps.

xxo Courtney “Feel the Stretch and Do it Anyway” Pinkerton

Who needs a Soulpreneur Mastermind?

If you are a creative woman who wants to feel more intentional about your busy schedule

You want to write more

To invest in a new biz or side biz

Or to deepen inside existing work + roles so that they better match your unique gifts and contributions

You can gain a community of fellow dreamers and doers, my favorite resources for breaking big goals into “turtle steps,” plus encouragement for taking that dream from “out there” to “right here and totally possible.”

Read on for all the details of this month’s theme + reply back to me with any questions.

Next week for the virtual retreat we meet at 9am. Zoom call if you want to see my face and share yours or just call in, whichever you prefer.

Then I’ll lead us in a guided meditation together.

We will spend a few minutes warming up our brains and covering any questions about resources I have shared with the Mastermind.

Then I’ll review the highlights from my audio lesson on how to design your own custom retreat. Then it is intention time. I used to be annoyed by setting intensions. But now I think I better understand, it is a humble posture. A way of claiming how you want to offer yourself to a certain time or practice even as you remain open.

So we will each name how will use the morning. It is a great time to couple some intensional self-care +meditation with mapping out your upcoming 6 months or year and identifying the core themes. (I’ll be sharing my super simple yet strangely effective sticky note practice.)

Then we will set about our unique work and reconvene at 1pm CST to share what we accomplished.

If you can’t spend the whole time retreating that is fine too! You can just join the call 1-2:15PM or join us in the morning too but not dedicate your whole day to the retreat. Totally up to you to custom create what you need. I will be present in the accompanying Facebook group if any questions pop up. And of course the whole thing will be recorded so you could easily use it as a guide for a retreat on a weekend or other day.

Also wanted to mention what I’ll be covering in the audio call to help you prep for retreat:

3 tips for clearing space in your mind and consciousness for your custom retreat

What not to do in a retreat

My favorite resources to draw from to guide your time in the retreat

What to have on hand

Suggestions on when and how to retreat even in a busy schedule.

So if this sounds fun to you I’d love to have you! You can register here!
The audio lesson and written guide is now available in your private members page — instructions following once you join.

Reply here with any questions and hope to “see” you soon!

Warmly,

Courtney

I’ve included the details about our Jan, Feb, and March Soulpreneur topics below.

Here is what you can expect in 2017:

Our first call will be a super fun optional half day virtual retreat.

We will still have our regular audio lesson and written guide for January released ahead of our call on how to design your own custom soulpreneur retreat. We will then have our regular live group call (and chance for coaching around the content and goals) on the 26th from 1-2:15PM. For those who are interested in the virtual retreat, we will a bonus rendezvous on Zoom so we can see each others faces — or you can simply call in if you don’t like Zoom — at 9am that morning to set intentions for the day and do some opening activities. Then we will break and each work on our own goals and reconvene with the group call at 1pm.

Sound fun?

Also I’ve opened up a combo package where Mastermind members can get a one on one coaching session with me each month. So you will see that option including the coaching plus other payment options for the Mastermind available on the registration link.

Then my sense is we need a chance to exhale. So February will be our self love/integration month with no new content but a bonus live Q and A call so you will have our regular group coaching session plus another call. This will free up lots of time for your questions to be answered about any of the content we have covered so far and also your own Soulpreneur goals. *New members will also have access to a library of previous lessons in this month on the Change Cycle, Creating Your Freedom Calendar, and Discovering Your Super Powers. So lot’s of content to enjoy! Dates for Feb calls are Thursday Feb 2 and Thursday Feb 16 1-2:15PM). All calls will be recorded.

Lastly March we will be talking about celebration. If you think this is lame, fluffy stuff — o contraire! It is a super important tool for Soulpreneurs and change agents of any stripe. So we will be talking about how (and why) to celebrate the wins in your life and honoring your accomplishments in this group — big or small! March Mastermind live call is Thursday 23rd 1-2:15PM.

I only have 2 spots remaining for Mastermind members who would like the option for one on one coaching support. (In the private call we will be focusing on you and your specific goals– so that you can get super clear on next steps and have the support and accountability to follow through.) So if you know you are ready to invest in your own momentum with some targeted one on one support I hope you will reserve your spot today. Here is your registration link.
Here is a reminder of what we have covered so far and where we are headed with this Soulpreneur Mastermind:

Thursday October 20 Where are You in the Change Cycle?

Thursday November 10 Craft Your Freedom Schedule

Thursday December 15 What are Your Super-Powers?

Thursday January 26 Soulpreneur Virtual Biz Retreat (Mapping Your Year)

Thursday February 2 & 16 Integration Month: This is your chance to catch your breath, show yourself some love, and ask any questions which have come up so far as well as get coached on your unique challenges in the bonus Q & A call.

Thursday March 23 Celebration!
Courtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram (a personality map), meditation, and mindbody practices to reduce stress as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.
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Want to Run Away to Mexico with Me? (Real Question… Quiz Inside)

Are you feeling behind already? Let’s not — OK?

Let’s do less, live more in 2017.

I’m in a process of learning how to set priorities like I’ve never done before. Rather than run around with that wack-a-mole energy I’m making the choice, day by day and moment by moment to concentrate my energy around my deepest desires.

Which for the next three months is writing my first book under the guidance of a book coach.

I’ve been so inspired by the community of fellow authors. People who have written books while homeless. (I’m not kidding). While they had cancer. I mean come on.

These authors faced extreme circumstances but I don’t mean to minimize the struggles we all have to integrate care of self, care of beloveds, care of finances, care of home, and care of work priorities.

My writing program starts next week and my kids just went back to school yesterday. (Well technically it was Tuesday but Rosetta didn’t get my memo titled “Please G*d Go Back to School” and instead woke us all up in the dawn hours throwing up.)

So in this day of blissful silence as I prepare for the next season of my life I am attuned to a fierce wind blowing. I only have bandwidth for the most true things within me. Not the partial truths or the “have-to’s.”

This is where you come in.

As I’ve hinted I have been doing some research with my lovely virtual assistant on retreat locations for the May. This gathering will be similar to my Ghost Ranch offering last year but this time I’m going out on my own.

While Austin in all ways makes much more sense (people can drive there and it is fun and fabulous) my heart was hijacked by my recent trip to San Miguel de Allende, a UNESCO World heritage site and cultural gem in the highlands of central Mexico. And my soul is whispering go for it.

It is where I want to take you for transformational work.

It meets my requirements for being nature-drenched. (Enjoy a trip to the botanical gardens with an experiential herb labyrinth garden. Swoon. Or come a day early or late to immerse yourself in the hotsprings.)

But actually what it does most of all is match my desire for taking you somewhere beauty-drenched.

I wish I could share the pics of the place I’m considering renting but I’m awaiting a digital copy from the owner. But take my word for it: heated pool, courtyard, churchbells and bird calls. It delights the senses.

As women I think we need to honor drinking in beauty as a spiritual practice– a way to invite all of ourselves into our metamorphasis process, not just the more heady or pushy aspects of our personality.

(Have you noticed that barking at yourself around those New Year’s resolutions isn’t effective?)

The select group of women who join will be guided through group coaching sessions centered around themes in my upcoming book. Things like how to live with more ease and less struggle. And how to let go of external expectations to design a life which fits you from the inside out. (And ironically, frees you to contribute your most potent content in your professional and creative life.) Plus my favorite tools and processes for gaining clarity and breaking large goals into turtle steps. They will also be among the first to receive a copy of my book.

So — and this is an open and honest question. Are you into it?

Tentative Dates are Thurs May 4 -Sun May 7.

I know there are many more questions to answer, details on pricing, what is included (here is a hint, I’ll be bringing my husband who has years of catering experience and is an amazing chef to provide us with delicious, healthy fare), accommodation options and more.

But for now its just my heart talking to yours — I’ve put together a brief quiz for you and can’t wait to hear your preferences!

Warmly,

Courtney

Photo Nov 12, 6 14 05 PMCourtney Pinkerton, M.Div & M.PP, is a holistic life coach and the founder of Bird in Hand Coaching. She holds dual masters degrees from Harvard Divinity School and Harvard Kennedy School, is the host of the Summer of Meditation Challenge and publishes a popular blog on soulful living. Courtney teaches regularly on the Enneagram, meditation, and MindBody practices as well as supporting other “soulpreneurs,” aka women who want to lead with heart in their work + lives. She lives in Oak Cliff, Texas with her husband Richard Amory where they try to keep up with their three children and remember to water their garden boxes. You can read more about her coaching options here or Courtney can be reached directly at cp@courtneypinkerton.com.

Want to get the latest from Courtney?



Coaching for Soulful Women