A year of Wandering in the Wilderness

Jun 16 2024

It’s been two years since I packed up my Bristol home, jigsaw puzzled all my belongings into a storage unit and moved to Devon to volunteer as a meditation retreat centre coordinator at The Barn. I am astonished to realise it’s now been a whole year since I left The Barn!

This is the story of the last year of my life.

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Playing With Parts

Mar 31 2024

We’re a group of IFS trained clowns and fools who have been meeting online for the last couple of years, exploring the space where Internal Family Systems (IFS) meets clowning and fooling through experiential play and discussion.

In this blog I will be outlining our experiments and describing some of what happened for me during our first ever in-person play day. Read on for tales of grief, gratitude, identity, connection and home.

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Internal Family Systems and Me

Feb 27 2024

IFS is a therapeutic system which is based on the theory that we are all made up of many parts (ie feelings, sensations, thoughts, memories, dreams, fantasies, etc…). You may already have a sense of this in yourself; in conversation we often say, “Part of me thinks this and part of me thinks that.“ Our parts don’t necessarily all get along, they can have very different wants, needs, values and desires...

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Have Workshops, Will Travel!

Jan 26 2024

Would you like me to hold space for you and a group of your peers / friends / colleagues to play, connect, learn and grow together? This blog explains how we could make that happen.

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2023 Review

Dec 28 2023

Welcome to my 2023 review, as I look back on a year of transition, exploration, not knowing and discovering. This was a year where I welcomed joy, learned to make less effort, completed my year of volunteering at The Barn, found my way back to facilitation, sweatily hatched plans in my dad’s attic in France, exploded out into a French street theatre festival, drifted around England and Wales looking for home, did an awful lot of experiential learning and training (including gaining my IFS level 1 certificate!), applied for several jobs (and didn’t get an interview!), birthed a new workshop, opened the doors for 20 fantastic online one-to-one clients, parachuted into a few places for some lovely guest teaching gigs, returned to Fooling and found a new home (for now)...

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How To Stay In The Unknown Part 2

Oct 17 2023

It’s now four months since I left the Barn Retreat Centre in Devon. After a year of being immersed in meditation retreat land, I had no idea where I wanted to live or what I wanted to do when I left, so I made a commitment to stay with the not knowing until it became clear.

This blog charts the last four months of my adventures into the unknown, exploring what I’ve been doing and why I’ve been doing it, examining the responses I’ve been receiving from other people, through the lens of The Fool and investigating the responses of my inner parts, using techniques gained from my recent Internal Family Systems (IFS) training. I’ve included an IFS exercise to help you quieten your inner parts if that feels helpful to you.

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How to Stay In The Unknown

Jul 11 2023

As a clowning, fooling and improvisation teacher, my work is helping people to get comfortable with hanging out in the unknown. But learning to rest in the unknown as a lifestyle choice is Next Level Stuff! This blog charts my journey with the unknown, through the past year, from terror to excitement. It’s really a guide for me as I continue to move out into the world without A Plan, but hopefully it’s useful for you too, dear reader. 

In this blog we’ll be exploring:

  • How do you behave when you enter into the unknown?
  • If you listen to the voice behind your behaviour, what does it say?
  • What emotions do you feel when you enter the unknown? 
  • How can you sit with those feelings?
  • How do thoughts block access to the unknown?
  • How can you work with those thoughts?
  • How might setting an intention be a guide into the unknown?
  • How do you set an intention?

It’s peppered with advice from wise teachers and exercises that you can do if you want to play with embracing the unknown too. 

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Holly Has Left The Barn

Jun 17 2023

After 11 months of being planted in the idyllic, vibrant Devonshire countryside, nestled within a team of devoted and dedicated big-hearted Buddhists, running back-to-back meditation retreats, whilst learning to live with grief, I find myself spat out into the Big Wide World again.

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The Power Of Not Giving A Shit

Apr 25 2023

This blog is an unexpected meander through the themes of effortless creativity and the power of not giving a shit. It starts with me exploring what is blocking my writing and goes off on a quest to seek wisdom from author Martin Shaw and artist Frida Kahlo. Between them, they manage to clear the block and make way for two stories about humans and animals falling in love. To end, we have a guest appearance from a bunch of unfurling baby ferns. Enjoy! Or don’t! I don’t give a shit! (I do, but I'm learning not to.)

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How To Make Less Effort

Apr 03 2023

This one goes out to all of us who try too hard, hold on too tight and stretch ourselves too thin. 

In this blog, I’ll be exploring how over-efforting causes suffering and pondering on why so many of us fall into this pattern. I’ll be exploring how over-efforting creates tension in the body, heart and mind and how that can influence our behaviour. I’ll shine a light on the tension that has been taking over my meditation practice and share some tasty theory and exercises for you to try, from a range of practitioners who have been teaching me how to effort less this year.

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