One of the things I loved the most about the children I worked with in Nicaragua as a Peace Corps Volunteer was their incredible knowledge of the natural world. You could ask them the name of any plant or creature on their volcano and they knew it. (Well, I’m sure there must be something they don’t know… but I asked countless times and they were never stumped.)

If anything they almost had this attitude like “of course that is a Jocote tree” almost like “this is my Aunt Ruby, haven’t you met her before?”

They knew their bio region. They are from some particular place.

This weekend I taught a retreat on the Brazos river, not far from where I used to visit my granny. (This is why I couldn’t quite get it together to share my normal email on Friday.)

When my kids were little we had a Montessori teacher who taught us to always claim our natural resources. To help the children connect to this particular land. She said whenever we crossed over the Trinity to downtown Dallas we should say “there is our river!”

I love this. Now the Brazos river is not technically my river, but it might have been my grandmothers river and I’m claiming the lineage. At this retreat center the Brazos literally flowed in our backyard.

And the first night after it was dark I snuck out there… all my senses awake for the rustle of a snake. I sat on a swing and looked out over it, not even able to see it really but only feel into the dark coolness in front of me. The moon and stars arresting me with their intensity as I made my way back inside.

The morning we were to leave I took the remnants from our

Mind in the Jar meditation and dumped it on a tree to compost it. The last few beans and lentils left in the jar I swished in the river. Literally washing our worries away.

I’m not sure the coaching lesson in this post (does their need to be one each time?). Sometimes it is good to simply notice what wakes you up to all your senses. And to taste the gratitude for the Grandmothers and the bio region that reared you.

Warmly, Courtney

PS I am offering a special coaching program which starts tomorrow to share this whole new body of work called the FLOURISH formula! (a way to beta test these ideas before they go to print later this year.) This coaching program will include both virtual and in person components as well as group and one on one coaching. Everything will be recorded if you ever have to miss a call. Plus the program includes 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 email to let me know and I’ll share the details! xxo Courtney


We are almost sold out but I have opened up one additional spot for my Flourish Retreat in San Miguel de Allende this May! If you want to join Jeni and an amazing group of women and enjoy the heated pool, yoga, group coaching, farm to table meals and more I don’t want you to miss it! Read all the details and reserve your spot here

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 busy women who want to unlock their greatest gifts and flourish in their personal 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 about options for working with Courtney here and reach her directly at