Archive for February, 2013

Soon my Breaking Through Concrete Workbook will be published. The purpose of the book is to support people in uncovering the origins of present behaviors and beliefs. Sometimes it helps to know the origins, if you see any need to change either painful beliefs or behaviors.

This book is one filled with self-examination questions that can be used alone or in a small group. The questions are related to time segments of your youth. They include: Preschool Years, Elementary School Years and Teen Years. These segments lead you through your earliest memories all the way to the doorstep of your early adulthood.

To give you a sample, here is one question from Preschool Years.

Which parent nurtured you in a way you responded to the most? What is one memory about being nurtured by that parent? What difference, if any, did that memory have on your life?

Here is an example of exploring and using these two questions.

My answer is that my father was more nurturing than my mother, which was no contest, given how harsh my mother was. Though my father was distant and aloof, I was sure that he cared about me.

My earliest memory was the time he found me sleeping on the couch one night when I was about five. As he picked me up, I awoke to my father carrying me through the hall and tenderly putting me in my bed. Pretending I was still sleeping for fear he would stop carrying me, I did not want to blow my cover that I had awakened. I’ll never forget how pleased I was to realize I was important to him in that moment. It buoyed me up and it was my secret memory that got me through tough times. Though I did not have verbal encouragement about my value, I knew he loved me. There was more evidence I collected later about my father’s kindness. He did not have to say he loved me and I had learned not to expect it.

So how was it for you?  How would you answer these questions?  Leave me your answer and how you are affected today by a loving or nurturing parent.

Playshop Series

My, as yet, unpublished Breaking Through Concrete Workbook is the basis of a four-part course that I call the Playshop Series.  My friend Brenda, who attended my first Book Signing, suggested that I do a series of workshops based on my published book.  When I told Brenda that I had written a Workbook, she said that was more proof I could go ahead with a course.  Promising to be a participant, she  requested I create something immediately.

Already, the Breaking Through Concrete Workbook included the human experience, not merely mine. By leading a four part course, I would test out my workbook.

This course is called a Playshop to evoke some lightness, playfulness and creativity. Self-expression is needed to balance with the often heavily laden memories. Creative play takes the form of journaling, drawing, collaging, montaging, singing and dancing. In the sessions, creative expression takes the form of writing, drawing and sharing to capture what personal answers emerged for the participants from the questions in my workbook. Participants are encouraged to continue other modalities of creativity, expanding on what came up from the Playshop.

One participant wrote this to me:

“For me, your workshop hit the spot … so much that I could use more time and work in this direction. I’m just thrilled you did THIS Playshop the way you did. Your visualizations and group sharing/support were MUCH more effective for me than conventional therapy.” ~ Marilyn

Since last Saturday turned out to be a snow day, the Playshop will continue next Saturday. This extra week in between gives participants time to create more connections with their creative self.

This is the information I sent out to a group of people before it started:

Breaking Through to the Inner Child PLAYSHOP Series

What is the one thing in your life that is not as satisfactory as you’d like? Is it in the area of Relationships? Finances? Health? Self-Expression? Recreation? Career? Environment? Why has it eluded you? Could it be due to something unsettled from your past? Come to a Playshop Series in a group setting with nurturing, creativity and lightness all around you to get a new perspective.

This Playshop grew out of my book Breaking Through Concrete: The Gift of Having Mentally Ill Parents. It is not necessary to read the book to take this course.

Playshop Purpose

To notice how you have broken through the concrete in your life.

To see yourself as the star protagonist in your life using fresh ways of looking.

To forgive your past.

To embrace the best in yourself.

To own your gifts, no matter how they came about.

To identify the Monkey Mind Monsters and take your power back.

To shift your point of reference to life. (Mine was: “Life is a struggle”).


Who: Powerful Players. Those who want to uncover hidden, denied, or wounded,

parts of self. And those who want to reclaim, own and express your gifts.

What: 4 Playshop Sessions

When: Saturdays: January 12, 19, 26 and February 2

Why: Expanded JOY, Greater FREEDOM.

Where: At a Cincinnati location. Possibly in the future, I may offer this as a Teleclass.  People from around the country have expressed a desire for this course.