Nov 03 2022
Trigger Warning: grief, miscarriage
This blog explores how ritual, nature and creativity can support grief. It offers three grief rituals for you to try wherever you are.Read more >
Who Wants Me To Tell My Stories?
Oct 15 2022
In my last blog, Who Am I Without My Stories? I wrote about conducting an experiment here at the Devonshire meditation retreat where I now live and work. In 'The Non-Self Experiment', I tried to go a whole week without telling any of my stories to the retreatants.
This blog charts my experiences through my second week of trying not to tell any of my stories. Come with me as I explore how I did it, what I learned and hold up a Brain Trumpet to listen to the parts of me who really want me to tell my stories, with added bonus inspiration from my friend Goetz, who is several hundred steps ahead of me in the exploration.
Who am I without my stories?
Sep 20 2022
It’s been nine weeks since Holly moved to The Barn retreat centre in Devon and this week she is doing a social experiment; this week, Holly has decided to not talk about her background AT ALL.
For one week only she is not Holly Stoppit the clown teacher / dramatherapist, she’s not the one who grew up in the circus, she’s not from Wales, Bristol or Milton Keynes, she’s not the 5th of 6 children, she’s not from Northern English and mysterious Jewish heritage, she’s not vegetarian, nor fond of cheese, dancing, wild swimming or walking up windy hills, she’s not a dyslexic writer, a newly qualified supervisor, a fool or a clown and she’s certainly not someone who is grieving lost babies.
She is just one of the coordinators, holly with a small h.Read more >
Dancing With A Bull On My Deathaversary
Aug 02 2022
Today is the one year deathaversary of mine and Joe’s relationship. This time last year, I was sobbing on the carpet amongst the dust and debris that he left behind in our terraced house in Bristol.Read more >
Bye bye Bristol, hello Devon!
Jul 14 2022
Gosh darn - people aren’t lying when they go on about moving house being one of the most stressful things you can do (my tripadvisor review of moving house: “I’ve had more relaxing times at other times in my life.”)Read more >
Apr 11 2022
This announcement first appeared in the Holly Stoppit Workshops Newsletter, April 2022.Read more >
Public Shedding: Do it, don’t do it!
Mar 20 2022
Hello. I am Holly and I am a Public Shedder. “Shedding” is a term I got from Amy Turn Sharp (I've posted her writing below), for me Shedding means letting go of a reality that used to define me, it can be a painful process, full of grief and vulnerability. Usually considered a highly private activity, I have shed in public, on purpose, many times as a performer, public speaker and writer. I have also helped other artists to shed in my capacity as a facilitator of self-exploratory workshops and a director of comic autobiographical theatre.
This blog charts my Public Shedding journey, from novice, impulsive, not-very-aware-of-why-I-was-doing-it Shedder to professional Shedder and holder of fellow Sheddies. There are guest spots from writers Amy Turn Sharp and Jeff Foster and a couple of cameos from a friend on facebook and my Clinical Supervisor. Plus two useful lists (who doesn’t love a list?): Why Have I Been Shedding In Public? and Questions To Ask Yourself Before you Shed In Public. Enjoy!Read more >
Don’t Resist Grief, She Has Much To Teach You
Mar 13 2022
Dear Me From July 2021,
It’s Me From March 2022! I’ve come to sit with you in this den made of sticks, in these snowdrop carpeted woods on the undulating Sharpham estate in Devon. Spring hope is bursting through the decaying remnants of your summer’s leaves. There are perfect new buds on the trees, quivering with the potential for another vibrant summer.
I come baring two huge hot-pink flowers that I found on the ground. One of them is for you.Read more >
Start Close In - Artist Retreat at Hawkwood
Jan 28 2022
In the first week of January 2022, Hawkwood Centre for Future Thinking in Stroud opened its loving arms to me and two collaborators, Dominique and Chez. We spent four days in and around a grand old Victorian stone built house, diving into my continuing exploration of body-based and nature-inspired approaches to writing, which formed the backbone of my Arts Council funded ‘Developing Your Creative Practice’ project in 2021.
For our Hawkwood retreat, we added our shared practice of “Fooling” into the mix....The following blog offers a peek into our process.Read more >
Letting Go, Letting Be
Jan 15 2022
To mark the turning of the years, I started 2022 on my meditation cushion in the company of over a hundred people, scattered across the globe. I’d signed up for an online meditation retreat, led by one of my favourite teachers, Martin Aylward and assisted by Milla Gregory. For four days, we gathered on Zoom to explore presence, letting go and opening up, through guided meditations, dharma talks, breakout discussions and invitations for solo investigations.
I had a number of lightbulb moments about how to let go which I’d like to share with you, as well as some meditations for you to try. But first I’d like to give you a little context to help you accompany me on my journey towards understanding more about the power of surrender.Read more >