Tuesday, September 30, 2014


Serotonin, the brain's feel-good chemical, interacts with receptors to spread happiness, satisfaction and relaxation. When we wrestle with shades of experience, we have the ability to move from intense moments then glide into realms of ease. At other times we just struggle, stuck in the middle of funk. The complexity of the human endocrine system toys with our balance.

All the advances in medicine and technology cannot provide a life of satisfaction. Individually, we access the center of wisdom in the brain and do what needs doing. We must engage with our highs, lows and middles by discovering ways to dislodge discomfort and energize the interactions in the brain for positive results.

With writing we have the ability to alter our moods or, at least, write about and through them.


Get several sheets of paper and a pen that flows across the page. Find a location where you can write undisturbed for an hour. Write your current mood across the top of the page. Begin writing and do not cross out or feel concern about the words. Get into a flow. Let one word drop, then another.

See where your mind takes you until the end of the page. Has your mood changed? Write the replacement mood across the top of the next page and begin again. Follow your moods for an hour.

Try writing with a variety of colors. To dislodge crankiness, use green. If tired, write with red or magenta. If restless, try blue for its tranquil qualities.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Dip into Secrets

"There are secrets on playgrounds where swings move back and forth without children or wind." -  Faith Shearin

Take a chance. Look back at a moment or scene that arrived too fast the first time. Return to it and develop the details.

Explore images.  
Ask questions that have no answers.  
Let the textures reveal mysteries. 
Daisies hold secrets in their petals.  
Search in the dark, hidden places to reveal moods. 
Densities and daring belong to the curious.

Think in abstractions. Dig for the details in words.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Write About Transitions

Autumn arrives in stealth.
A click crisps the morning air.
Trees replace green with reds, oranges, yellows.
Sparkled by moonlight, harvest time begins.

Does seasonal change signal a need to make your own adaptations? What needs to change color in your life? 

Let the hidden emerge.

Write about transitions.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

A Lesson in Detachment

We are able to laugh when we achieve detachment, if only for a moment. ~May Sarton

When I walked along the road in the valley at Yosemite Park, a car zoomed by me. I showed a "slow down" signal with my hand and yelled, "Slow."  

The car pulled over. I thought maybe the driver needed directions. When I reached the vehicle, the driver yelled at me, "Shut your mouth. I'm going 25." 

I began to speak but could see by the look on his wife's face that his anger had started before his reaction to me. Nothing would have caused him to re-arrange his mood.

I turned and walked into the silence of trees. 

The experience made me realize the importance of awareness and observation of others' reactions beyond my own "fix it" mentality. It took time for me to stop thinking of solutions as I breathed in the refreshment of nature and eased into myself.  

This time I had paid attention to the proverb, "Not my circus. Not my monkeys."

Friday, September 26, 2014

What to Carry

Men have pockets for a wallet, cell phone and maybe a comb. Women add more to their purses. Everyone finds essentials to carry.

I keep moving toward a smaller purse. For now, I am minimal. Comb, wallet, business card pouch, a pen, dental floss, and lip balm fill the inside. My cell phone bulks the bag's side pocket.

What else helps us get through the day? What can we discard?

Add awareness. Remove worry. Notice what a round box of patience adds. Slip in gratitude and grace. Kindness has its place. Let fun sink in with a slither of laughter. Always make room for mental floss.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Bridges, Football and Kisses

"Every morning I awaken torn between the desire to save the earth and the inclination to savor it." - E.B. White                                                                                         
Bridges intrigue me. I linger during the crossing of a bridge and stop in the middle to feel the sway. Looking at the water where it meets the sky, my senses search for connections in words. Spiders taught us how to span locations. Many bridges reveal similar lines.

Often with writing projects we want the finished product right now when deadlines loom or frustration nips at our fingers. Our emotions and impatience get in the way of the experience. We do not want to take the time to travel the bridge span from idea to result. Fun slithers into the darkness leaving us alone with a blank screen or page.

Consider football and kisses. With our favorite team, are we satisfied to learn about the win and final score without watching the game? If we receive a kiss without a hug or any build up, does it provide the same thrill? Does an unwrapped gift have the same meaning without the fun we have ripping at ribbon and paper as it crackles in our hands? All invite the bridge experience.

Writing requires fingers on the keys or the clutch of a pen to pursue the ink flow. How many times have we started a story or poem and the ending did not come out as planned? We discovered it came out better if we gave it space.

Our synapses make fresh connections. For this reason, we need to dwell on the bridge and notice each moment before we reach the other side.

Take time to discover and delve into a bridge experience. Then write about it.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Color an Alternative Reality

- Rene Magritte

Inject enchantment, fun and wonder in writing by incorporating elements that mix illusion with everyday experience. Let unlikely images collide. Weave dreams with logic. Imaginative motors rev by reading science fiction or fantasy and observing the elements in surreal painting.

Andre Breton felt dreams can open us to a “superior reality.” His ideas created a definition of surreal. Or what he termed, “psychic automation.” He encouraged free writing to discover the connections.

Rene Magritte created a variety of subjects this way. He painted a rock suspended over the sea, fish people on a rock, a locomotive coming out of the chimney under a clock. How did he make these ideas work to test our curiosity? View his website and write to his paintings.


Leap into ponds of possibility by trying out new muscles in your writing. Search for untouched areas you have never explored.  Move beyond the regular, expected and known imagery.  Shift your probabilities. Color an alternative reality.

The Color Blue

What if
midmorning sky
sneaks into café tableware
tricked by the color blue.
Clouds dance on plates
grazing the toast and jelly
like newborn lovers
whose toes never
touch the earth.
What if no one
vacuums the crumbs
or sends clouds back
to where
they are supposed
to belong?
                 - Penny Wilkes

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

First Day of Fall - Sept 23

That time of year thou may'st in me behold, 
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang 
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold, 
Bare ruin'd choirs, where late the sweet birds sang. 
William Shakespeare 

The autumnal equinox begins today.  Equinox comes from Latin meaning "equal night." The fall and spring equinoxes are the only days of the year where the sun crosses the celestial equator. 

Temperatures begin to drop and the hours of daylight decline. Days get shorter than the nights.

The Mayans built the pyramid of Kuklukan in Chichen Itza to honor the autumnal equinox. During the equinox, light creates an illusion of the serpent God Kuklukan slithering down the pyramid.

With shorter days, and longer, cooler nights, biochemical processes in the leaves paint the landscape a variety of colors.

Watch the ways colors change in leaves and flowers that remain.

Observe changes in the sky and movement of clouds. 

Describe your memories of transitions.

Think of seeds scattering to bring new growth after winter.  

Which seeds will you scatter to prepare for blooms in spring?

Monday, September 22, 2014

Use Your Personality for Story Ideas

Have you ever taken time to inventory your personal characteristics?  Writing to probe your personality can assist with ideas to use for stories and poems. It also may lead to a deeper understanding of yourself.

Write to these questions:

How would you describe yourself?  Include physical, intellectual and emotional strengths.

How would a friend or family member describe you?

How would a person who has had a disagreement with you describe you?

How have you built your personality over the years?  Did you pick and choose role models to emulate?

Describe characteristics you wanted to add to your personality. How did you do it?

Reveal how a parent, sibling or close friend provided assistance with your intellectual and emotional development.

What are your greatest strengths?  How have they evolved over the years?

Describe three peak experiences that have stretched you.

Have you set attainable goals?  Did you reach others you did not anticipate?

Describe a trait that burdens you.

Which areas of your personality need the most work?

How has negative thinking or a bad attitude limited you in the past?   How did you discipline your thinking?

In a situation where you felt lost or ill-prepared, how did you manage your emotions?

When you need encouragement, what do you do?  

How do you select the people who surround you?

Have you had to let go of a relationship because it did not feel reciprocal?  Did you return to it?

How do you encourage others?

How do you hold yourself accountable?

After you have completed your responses, create a persona and respond with traits not similar to yours. When you're done, write a dialogue between you and the persona to see where it takes you.

Set the scene with a misunderstanding. Show how the personalities respond.

Let a story or poem evolve.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Pursuit of Contentment

"No man is free who is not master of himself." ~Epictetus

What does it mean to live from the inside out and pursue contentment? Self-mastery goes beyond discipline. It takes a search for balance of mind, body and spirit in creative and risking ways.

Living and learning through each mood that arrives promotes growth and self-worth. Happiness does not have to prevail at all times. Developing strategies to benefit from life's moments adds richness to life.

Mindfulness of how to teeter, push to the edges of possibility, make errors, and return to tranquility takes a lifetime of attempts and miscues for progress to occur. Discovering peace within the mind's disarray promotes freedom.

Everyone has the power to make changes.

Begin a list of what works in your life as a reminder. What gives you satisfaction? Go deep into the details and sensory imagery concerning your potential.

Consider one action you can do as soon as your eyes spring open each morning that pushes you beyond inertia.

Focus on breathing techniques to calm you during stressful times. Take a yoga class.

Exercise the mind and body each day.  Walk instead of drive.

Schedule play activities for a part of each day.

What can you do for the environment or a loved one to express your responsibility and respect?

Each day expand your list with creative solutions whenever you confront or learn of a difficulty or problem.

Make friends with unwelcome moods.

Attract and invent ideas for possible ways to balance negativity.

Let humor alter tough situations. 

You can outlast any challenge.

Write your way to freedom from frustrations.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Who Designs Signs?

As a word-driven person, I wonder who designs signage. Does anyone test the reaction time to signs along roadways? By the time the driver has figured out the sign's meaning, an accident could have occurred.

The above street sign concerns me about angry traffic that won’t stop. If it isn't angry, what does the "cross" mean? I laugh at the signs along the highway like "Rocks." How would an international traveler respond? Who rocks? What rocks? Wow, shall we?

A Dead End sign make no sense to me. The street just stops, right? Who is dead there . . . a frightening thought. If street is too long a word to fit the sign, then END works for me.

Soft shoulder always twirls my mind. Does the highway have an anatomy? Turn at the next leg? Stop at the foot? Slow at short toes.

I will never get used to signs with graphics. The variety of symbols, people and slashes confuse.When signs like Snow Heaves appear, I shake my head. Does it have the flu?

Signage assists when it provides detailed information. Neighborhoods on the east coast reveal: Handicapped Child and Deaf Person. I haven't seen Mentally Impaired.  

Our highways and byways definitely need writers and editors to create signage that gets to the point. Until then, I will find ways to calm the angry traffic.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Storytelling: The Three Cs

"We must create and find our own stories, our own myths with symbols that will bind us to the world as we see it today."  - Terry Tempest Williams

A personal narrative includes a desire, struggle and realization. More than an accounting of events, it includes emotional, moral and psychological tones which give meaning to the events.

Story shape:

A desire starts the story.
You struggle to gain it through an action or actions.
Challenges with interrelated events occur that you make happen or happen to you.

Because of what happens, you become a different person.  You realize something as a result of the struggle.  You may see things differently with resulting wisdom. Or, you do not gain insight.

You have a realization or a series of realizations and a shift in values or perception. Possibly you learn nothing from the life lesson and continue to make similar choices that end in negative results.

Write about the three Cs: You take a chance, make a choice, notice a change. Tell your story by describing a desire and challenges to reach a result.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Football and the Unpredictable

During football season I notice connections between the game and life. Regardless of how well one prepares in both situations, unpredictable events occur. Some amaze. Others amuse.  We often shake our heads in muddle or marvel.

A football game plan changes in a second. An odd sequence of moments unfolds when a fumble forward results in either a first down or a turn over. A flying player can risk injury to find a way to score. Problem solving must exceed exact plans and choices in the moments.

Years ago, my husband, Michael tripped out of his car parked on the curb next to our home. His keys flew in the air. No interception. No recovery. Not even a jingle gave us a clue to know if they made contact with the sidewalk or tree branches. We borrowed a metal detector and tried for hours to locate them. They just vanished.

Recently at the airport, when thinking about plays during a football game, I mentioned the weirdness of football situations and how their peculiar instances parallel life events.

After I went through security I received a text from Michael -  Can't find my license. I raced back through the monitors and learned he had taken the license out with the ticket. When he arrived at check in, no license. Had gravity caused the fumble?

Fortunately, he retraced his steps and found the license received by a metal plate on the floor.  Thankfully, this time, weird did not win. No interception. No penalties. Just an advance of the down.

I went back though security and metal detectors. This time the TSA inspectors took a special interest in my purse.  I laughed at the amazement and amusement of the unpredictable. I shrugged; no personal foul.

Life's magic brings on adventure and experiences in unpredictable ways. Humor and football metaphors help me win the day.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Write Your Track Record

Imagine a day when gravity pulls extra hard. 

If you find yourself in a experiencing a challenging situation, stop for a breath or four. Slow down and become observant.

When caught up in a tense or negative situation, diffuse the energy with a hearty laugh.  In the middle of the chaos, just start laughing. It will energize the brain, provide relief to you and others near you.

If frustrated, count your Gratitudes.

Accentuate the Positive. Think of all of the good times you have enjoyed. Let the sadness offer a different perspective to write about.

Avoid Judgment. Your thoughts plus your choices affect your life.  If you have overreacted, try not to place blame elsewhere. 

Keep a strong awareness about how you feel in situations.  Allow yourself to control how you react through self-realization. Stop and walk outside yourself for a view.

Choose what you want for an outcome, not what happened to you. 

When confronted with what does not work, look at what works. Bolster self-esteem by remembering how far you have come to get to the situation.

Check your track record and write about it. You've sailed through adversity before.  Find your buoyancy!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Childhood Geography

We are most nearly ourselves when we achieve the seriousness of the child at play. ~Heraclitus

Return to childhood to recapture an adventure, an emotion and an innocence. Define yourself by those incidents. How did you play?

Writer, Jack Gilbert says, "The only geography we have is the storybook of our childhood." What does this mean for you?

Ask questions:

As a child did you feel unquenchable?

Which moods did you express?

Do you recall a loss of innocence?

Write to delve into your storybook of childhood. 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Identity of Place

"A sense of place is the sixth sense, an internal compass and map made by memory and spatial perception together." 
- Rebecca Solnit

Identity or a sense of place does not occur on a map or a street. It circulates in memory filled with sensory imagery.

A whiff of fragrance.
           A taste of familiar.
                     A fondness for family.
                             A relationship of some kind.

All float through the mind.
    Symbols abound to etch ideas.

A grounding occurs.
                 A starting point.
                        A memory triggers a perception.

An observation of the landscape shapes feelings.

        A place tugs and begs a return again and again.

An intertwine of temperament and terrain.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Find Five Ways

Frustrated with the state of America, we often avoid deep reflection and thinking in our daily lives. Our culture has created an avoidance behavior since the media continues to irritate us with the doom and gloom in reporting the status of our country.

Individual Awareness becomes the first step to alter apathy. It has to start with each individual taking responsibility and then extending it. That's the reason to get effective communication out there with positive people who are making a difference headlined.

It's not about sign waving, it's about reorganizing thought patterns to consider, "What can I do? What are five ways today and then tomorrow? Start with family and friends first. Our media needs to show us how we have succeeded in the past in order to motivate us for the future.

If it's easier to continue to point out what's wrong with the politicians or "shoulds" then we'll never see positive change.

We need more life coaches and less critics. If one person can reach one, it makes a difference. So, alter your kaleidoscope and put thought into five ways Americans have achieved greatness. Share them with your family and friends and urge them to pass it forward. Stop the bashing and stay Positive to bridge the communication gap.

Each morning begin breathing with gratitude and awareness. Think of five ways to make each moment count. How will you make your presence felt in the world today?  Write about it.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Finding Out Why

"The two most important days of your life are the day you are born, and the day you find out why." -Mark Twain

Do a freewrite today about your first memory of life.  
Discover additional details as you write.  

How are you doing in the "finding out why" area?

Write about the thrill of life!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Make the Pen Mightier

In the fourth century, Euripides a Greek playwright, promoted word power with, ”The tongue is mightier than the blade.” In Hamlet Act 2, scene II, Shakespeare wrote, “many wearing rapiers are afraid of goosequills.” 
Edward Bulwer-Lytton etched eternal, “The pen is mightier than the sword,” in his play Richelieu; Or the Conspiracy. When he played The Joker in Batman, Jack Nicholson threw a poison quill into someone’s neck. The powerful pen concept has seen constant use in communicating the force of language.

All writers face beasts that sap word power. We find them disguised in a variety of costumes. Often we have to discover how to conquer them in ways beyond disciplining ourselves to write.

Beginning as well as experienced writers can discipline all day to sit in the seat and write. Yet, they might not have the insights and writing security or understanding of how to push the texts beyond what exists in their own points of view.

How do we develop techniques to gain fresh perspections (perception plus perspective)? The F words - fear, failure, frustration - will always loom and attack like Ninjas. The E words - ego, excuses, and energy level - lurk in shadows and dreams. 
We need to stoke writing energy by using the positive E’s: eyes, ears and enthusiasm to reach beyond Ego’s involvement in the story. This requires more than revision or re-vision. It involves another R word – Risk.

We can create our own warriors-with-a-pen and write past the Ninja swords.

Coloring your text will assist during the revision process. Use green to highlight active nouns and verbs. Highlight with red for “be” verb repetitions: is, am, was, were. Take blue for the action in the story or poem. Color adjectives and adverbs orange.
Use yellow to reveal areas where you tell the reader too much or use abstractions like love, death, fear, or rage.

Keep your pen moving beyond the battles. Take the risks needed to make your pen the conqueror.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Creative Ideas Instead of War

Thirteen years ago today at the time I'm writing this Blog entry, I watched the second tower fall on television. I had awakened that morning with thoughts of my father who had passed away many years before. I felt his presence in an odd way. An energy surrounded me for several days.
No matter where you learned the news, the exact scene still haunts.

Remember your feelings and memories of September 11, 2001. At a time when we face more conflicts, use creative thinking to ponder, "Instead of war, in what other ways could our country resolve issues?"

Write until you have exhausted every notion possible. Then keep writing. You might spark an idea our government officials have not discovered.  

Send a letter!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Peel the Orange

How often do you react to a situation you perceive as conflict rather than consider it a two-sided conversation?  No one likes to compromise because it feels like a defeat when each person involved must relinguish something. Consider a flow of the three C’s – Conflict. Calm. Conversation. Creativity. Collaboration.

In order to achieve collaboration, a calm must precede conversation and negotiation. Consider a simple scenario. With one orange and two individuals, one wants a drink, the other wants to make orange cake. If they split the orange in half, they will not have a desired result.

Moving to the next level of thinking – creativity and compromise, they need to take time to consider what each person actually needs from the orange. One person needs the juice, the other needs the pulp and rind. If they compromise in this way, both will have something not considered before; not half of what’s needed.

The next time you find yourself in a conflict situation, consider the other C’s.

l. Move away from the heat and emotion of the conflict. Discuss a subject far removed; even the weather.

2. In calm conversation, discuss what each person needs. Take notes, do not talk, just listen to the other person’s viewpoint.

3. Take time away and write what you heard. Make two columns.  In the first write what you heard.   In the second, respond with your needs and views.

4. Consider how a third situation will move beyond compromise and into collaboration.

5. Return to conversation. Develop a metaphor to represent the idea of collaboration. How can you peel the orange?

This technique requires creativity, patience, time and thought.  You will benefit from the results and wisdom gained. 

Write about peeling the orange.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Gift of Now

Take time to revel in the gift of now. Do what needs to be done.

Each day give yourself the present.

Don't plan it.  Don't wait for it.  Let it happen.

Write now!

Intensify your commitment to self-care.

Deepen your devotion to making yourself feel the best.

Increase your artistry each moment.

Stay present. Write about it.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Try a Ten Word Autobiography

An interviewer asked musician David Byrne to come up with a seven word autobiography.  Byrne produced ten: unfinished, unprocessed, uncertain, unknown, unadorned, underarms, underpants, unfrozen, unsettled, unfussy.

Try it. Express an essential truth about yourself in ten words.

Alternate the playful with the serious. Define yourself as a work-in-progress with positivity and possibility. Understand what you need and focus on becoming.

Dive into the center of yourself and spread out.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Corrugate Reality

Regrets are sacred to me.  They inform my character.  They ear witness to my evolution  
- Richard Power

Glimpses of past choices reveal possibilities. View them suspended in time like insects trapped in resin. Regrets can provide insights.

A typo would turn them into re-greats.  Make past choices work for you. Play with the lettering until it responds and releases from the past's bog.

Turn defeats in to de-feets and stroll into new territory.

Everything in life's progression of experience creates potential. Passages through chaos and challenge reveals paths into understanding. Thinking and reaction change.

In any endeavor, the first mistake provides a message. Another made in similar fashion becomes a choice.

Then what happens?

Write about adventure into re-greats after the first flash of regret passes.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Imagination explorations

A rare word in English, trouvaille, means a lucky find or an unexpected windfall.  In French, trouvaille refers to the same thing and more. It refers to an interesting or exceptional discovery. This involves a moment of fun or enlightenment generated through efforts of the imagination.

Let your imagination explore.

Leap into an enlightenment.

Discover a scent of mystery.

Listen for the wind's messages.

Breathe into curiosities.

Believe in laughter.

Color past obstacles.

Play with abandon.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Menagerie Stories

The earliest artists used animals as their subjects.  Images of beasts dominate cave walls of Lascaux and Altamira.  They tell stories of the prehistoric world.
Teaching stories and fables arrived later. Through the actions of animals, they showed children how to behave and the consequences of bad choices. Native American stories of coyote and raven abound.
Which menagerie could you create to tell a story of collaboration?

Consider two animals.

An elephant waded into the pond at a Wild Animal Park. With the sound of a trumpet, it tossed water from its trunk onto its back. Ripples from its skin sent droplets over its frame. A bluebird happened by and noticed this refreshment in the heat of the day.

“Hello,” the bird sang as it flew above the trunk.”How do you do that?”

“Ah, it's easy, “ the elephant responded. “ Would you like a spray?”

“Yes, I have flown for days from the north and would like a drink and bath.”  The bird flapped in motion just above the gray trunk. Soon the water sparkled from its feathers.

“You’re fortunate also to have wings,” smiled the elephant.

“I’ve always admired birds in the sky and how they can travel.

“It looks like we have ways to share our experiences,” said the bird, drying one feather at a time with its beak.

“So many animals here have talents to learn about,” said the elephant.

“Aren’t you frightened by the fierce ones?”

“Each has his or her own specialty,” the elephant moved deeper into the water. “Ah, this feels good.”

Thursday, September 4, 2014

A Write Ramble on Wildlife Day

“I only went out for a walk and finally concluded to stay out till sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in.” - John Muir

Henry David Thoreau's 1862 essay, "Walking," promotes his philosophy, "all good things are wild and free." He remarks about the connections of human beings and nature and criticizes individuals for their lack of a relationship with nature. During Thoreau's experiences of walking into the forest near his home, he compares nature's divinity and the spirit of walking with Christianity and mythology. 

Thoreau urges readers to marvel at the mythological wonders of sunset.

Charles Baudelaire
writes about the perfect stroller (the flâneur) in character, Monsieur Constantin Guys. 

In his essay, "The Painter of Modern Life" (1863),
he reveals Guys as a gentleman motivated by curiosity, joy 
and delight 
in new experiences. Guys observes the crowd in urban spaces as a "passionate spectator."

He saunters and inspiration leads him to become an artist, a man of the world and, "spiritual citizen of the universe."

“The external world is reborn upon his paper,” Baudelaire writes, “natural and more than natural . . . strange and endowed with an impulsive life like the soul of its creator.”

Celebrate Wildlife Day! Ramble, wander and wonder. Make notes about what crosses your path. Focus on interactions and individuals you meet in urban and natural settings. Become a "passionate spectator."

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Learning to Learn

Natural inquisitiveness is being eager to learn and eager to explore. It is not learning in the sense of collecting information; rather, it is absorbing what is happening around us, constantly relating to it. In this kind of learning, we do not learn things so that we can use them at some point to defend ourselves. In this case, we learn things because they are pleasurable to learn, fantastic to learn. 
- from Crazy Wisdom by Chögyam Trungpa

How do you unfurl with inquisitiveness to permit your curiosity to lead into explorations?

Consider the times you have learned from an experience. 

Write about the difficult lessons and where they led.  

Scribble the pleasures and enjoyment that flowed from an event.

Move from a tight bud into the unfolding petals of a rose in your writing. 

Develop additional metaphors to expand the possibilities of ways you learned to learn.

Move into full bloom.