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Oh, Cool - The new Thinking Candidly Newsletter is Live

July Issue:

Featuring: Masters - Misfits & Mentors; The Retreat Journal News; Wabi-Sabi Living and more. . .

Thinking Candidly is a new creative conversation series that explores ideas for living life on your terms.

Each monthly newsletter aims to uncover valuable insight through stories of experiences and lessons by Masters, Misfits and Mentors . . . from their biggest wins, failures and everything in between.

Another feature, The Retreat Journal (which was a magazine before Covid) will now be a monthly feature bringing you timely retreat news, events and soirees you won't want to miss.

With our feature, Embracing your Wabi-Sabi, we share ideas for the Art of Living as an Art of Imperfection . . . because, we all need a break from This, That and That!

The Retreat Journal News:

Retreat Locations Are Reinventing Your Stay

As travelers emerge this summer they will find that retreat destinations and resorts are reinventing and redesigning almost everything they offer.

A new perspective on wellbeing is forming.

Private pool at Sycamore Springs Resort, California

Wellness that is focused and meaningful experience journey’s, mind-body fitness, healthy delicious food, better sleep, quiet solitude, Wabi-Sabi, inner power, and mental health are the future.

No longer will the one-size-fits-all packages of anything be sufficient - it will be about creative, personalized, and unique experiences that one person or a small group can share in.

It's about "travel for what?" It's now about experiences that are distinct, immersive, and difficult to attain. Traveler's needs are changing - time-off needs to be taken to a whole new level. It requires participation and emersion into self. It needs a distinctive narrative that changes lives forever.

Watch for pre-treatment experiences that are substantial and meaningful to set the stage for what's to come. No longer should a guest be ushered into sitting rooms to flip through magazines while waiting for their name to be called.

Also, look for after-treatment options that go beyond being handed a plastic bottle of water. Look for special after treatment integrations. Like the cool side of the pillow, healing treatments should refresh and catch you off guard just a little. One needs to dwell on and integrate true healing . . .

For better health, massage will become 60 - 80 minutes or longer and will be provided outdoors whenever possible.

Ride horses to your outdoor massage at Dao House in Colorado

Room comfort will be an enhanced "healthy experience" offering

Many retreat properties are enhancing room experiences to become beautifully choreographed small experiences that slowly unfold from the minute a guest enters their room.

There will be an inspiration to book wellness treatments through meaningful treatment menus brought to your room along with samples of treatment products. New and interesting health and spa products may also be available from charming amenity bars (for purchase).

Informative spa menus will share the “why” of the treatment, where the ingredients come from, and what they do. Currently, most of this information is left out. And even more special, properties will start sharing a bio of the therapist so a connection and trust is established long before the treatment starts.

In food bars within guest rooms, one may find healthy snacks that really are healthy, not just the trivial, unpalatable “not-good-for-you” inedible items found currently in many locations.

Resorts of the future will not tolerate plastic. Instead, a guest may be given a personal water-bottle to be refilled at stations throughout the property.

A special touch would be filtering systems where diamonds and precious gems completely change the water structure according to different wellness concerns.

The Retreat Journal will bring you new ideas for retreating in each issue.

Stay tuned . . .


Masters, Misfits and Mentors - - aka; Rebel Wisdom

Women who find their Inner Warrior . . .

Her name was Andrea.

She was beautiful and had a sort of special power that made others want to be around her — as if they would become more powerful just by being in her presence.

Before age 20, she traveled extensively, by herself, through South America and the Amazon regions where she met shamans and wizards.

Her passion was to learn from the masters and refine her own skills in music, painting, dance and martial arts.

For years, she saved money to buy land in a special sacred area in Northern California. By the time she was forty, she purchased thirty-three acres with a cabin in a remote area out of Garberville, California. With no running water, electricity or modern comforts, she found her utopia. Here, she lived in her own elegant way.

Living 40 miles from the closest town, you would think she was living like a hermit. But, this was not so. She had many people visit her — she was very sought out.

Each day she fixed herself up, even if no one would see her. This routine in itself gave her an interesting power as a woman.

She lived on her land for the better part of 25 years, religiously practicing and improving her skills, all the while unraveling life’s most intricate mysteries and finding answers to the most abstract questions.

After 25 years, she passed away at age 62. It’s like she had attained all that she had come to earth at this time for and then gracefully left.

She was my sister.

And I miss her so much!

She taught me the wisdom of the masters . . . especially the women she met on her travels - one of which was Maria Sabina, the Mazatec curandura, shaman and poet who opened the western world to the knowledge of psilocybin mushrooms.

All cultures have their older wise women - they are the Sages giving us the mystical teachings handed down . . . through stories, myths and legends. They are the custodians of the spirit life, the true keepers of real mastery.

The women she studied with knew how to cultivate their inner power. They knew their own soul and who they were. Their spirits had no intention or the least liking for violence. These women knew the futility of it. However, they were always meticulously prepared to defend with great skill and never left anything to chance. Their minds were always prepared, no matter what they were doing.

She admired these masters for their charismatic persona, mystical prowess and how they honed their powers, skills and wisdom which seemed to challenge the laws of normalcy. They were always exploring newer horizons and achieving higher levels of energy and awareness. They appeared to be enlightened and empowered with true knowledge about themselves, their potential and limitations - they could see things that the average person could not.

There skills emanated from cultivating their inner spirit until it was thoroughly ingrained in their personalities. They expressed power through their art of living in nature. When they danced and moved they often mimicked the graceful movements of animals. When these masters performed, there was an undeniable beauty – the unmistakable dance of the predator. They did not merely imitate the movement of animals – they became the animal.

There is much to learn from the innate sense of balance, discipline and direction of the lives of these women. Their legends make them perfect archetypes for modern women to be inspired in new ways towards their own quest.

For women to retrieve their own power and substance is the journey.

Choosing an Authentic Path

To find your own true power you first need to penetrate your personality and do battle with the in-depth inner soul. I call it going on a Vision Quest.

First, you need to surrender to the defenses of pain, threat or sadness. Go deep within your body and soul. Allow memories to come up and do not dismiss these wounds to exile back into your body. In this meditative state you will start finding your true self. You will experience your neediness. Explore your life on this personal journey and surrender without searching for anything or contemplating business or relationships.

You are not trying to get somewhere. Just look at what is. Awareness is everything.

Here you will find whether you take the path your social conditioning has given you, or your own true path. Become a voracious hunter of personal essence. You find this essence by developing deeper truths about your experiences in the moment. Do not give energy to things that leak personal essence and power. This is called presence. It is the ultimate state of personal power. Your work to gain true essence and personal power begins by taking yourself out of your comfort zone – constantly.

Do not let a little bewilderment make you change your mind. Do not let a little experience of its effect induce you to relax your work. Do not let a little material hardship divide your mind. Do not be discouraged that your strength is insufficient. Do not have false imaginations about attainment of the goal. Keep your attention on the straight forward and naturally a day will come when you will arrive.

The most important warrior skill is to be able to reinvent yourself when needed.

This is like putting out effort every step of the way when climbing a mountain, finally to reach the summit; like paying attention to every step of the way when crossing a river, finally to reach the other side. It’s about finding the Bridge to the other side.

Stay tuned for the Dragons, Tigers and Lipstick retreat forming in the Fall. This is the ultimate retreat for developing your inner warrior personal power to achieve goals you never imagined you could do . . . if you want more information now, email me at:


The Art of Wabi-Sabi Living . . .

The Idea of The Idea House

A forward thinking creative studio and well-being living space that provides the perfect environment for the way one lives, breathes, rests, works, plays, and engages.

This was my building "idea" for a lot I owned in Costa Rica at a beautiful resort in the rainforest.

That project could not be completed, but the Idea is viable for all of us looking to create well-being spaces wherever we live. . . .

For me it is the Idea of Wabi-Sabi - spaces that represent minimal and imperfect beauty -

Here are "Ideas" for Wabi-Sabi living spaces:

Harmonize your living space by Purifying, Cleansing, and De-Cluttering

The ancient art of purifying, cleansing, and harmonizing your living space is passionately thriving as people are clearing out clutter, adding spiritual spaces, and transforming architectural style and spacial decor with Wabi-Sabi imperfection that nourishes, enhances, and enriches one life.

The oppressive weight of riotous home environments that scream for attention, produce negativity and turmoil, and drain your energy are being replaced by physical environments that encourage beauty, cocooning, protection, soothing relaxation, and restful mental and spiritual peace.

The new transforming architectural style is living as if you are in your own retreat space that nourishes, enhances, and enriches your life. Look to make special spaces based on natural rhythms where you can revel in tranquil creative energy.

Serene living is in. Chaotic living is out. It's a new thought to encourage putting technology aside and retreat in a space where new creative ideas can thrive.

Comfort and proportion, placement and harmony, along with sleek minimalist decor are introduced creating a calm, balanced, and uncluttered setting against a continuously imposing world.

Home is where we can disentangle mangled living, stop the struggle, and access peace through personal discipline.

Personal treasures, natural elements, and special amulets are also selectively added to dispel negativity in the auric field and to welcome harmony, happiness, and success.

Inspiration, reflection, stillness help restore our sense of soul and lift our sense of living life to the fullest. We become keenly aware of an atmosphere that touches our deepest senses. The atmosphere of one place can be different from another, though sometimes only subtly, but those differences can profoundly influence our moods and stimulate our spirit.

Weather you want to build a new home or bring extraordinary beauty and harmony to your existing space or environment, by redesigning something new, you also renew your life and your soul. You may even find that the things you enjoy the most are not things after all. ~


Create a new side project by hosting Wabi-Sabi Art Retreats at destination resorts or in your hometown . . . my new online class is now live:

Dream new Ideas, Create something Big, New and Bold, and Reinvent your Life with a Private Vision Quest Retreat in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

That's a Wrap ! Best Wishes for your Dreams this month!

Get in touch at:

Now, I'm off to create something special!

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