I am known by the name of Skellie Stan. As above so below! We are all made of the same matter! Do not be deceived! I am not just an inanimate object. I have a strong connection with the Muse. I have dipped my hands in the rich loam and known the power of Lorca’s Duende. Work with me! I offer new ways of seeing.
1 What does Stan cover in a “Writing for Wellness” session?
Sessions are designed to break down any residue mythology that one can only call themselves ‘a writer’ if they have authored and published a book. Participants will be introduced to more modern concepts of journal writing that have little to do with daily diaries operating on a calendar basis. At no stage will anyone be told the ‘right way’ to write but rather they will be encouraged to use writing as a way to clarify goals, visualize the future and perhaps go on to create meaningful memoirs and portraits of people who have been influential. And, if participants desire to be ‘read’, to have their voices heard, they will be offered imaginative ways to publish and extend their reach.
2 Who are sessions suited to?
This workshop caters for a multitude of needs. The truth is that everyone, no matter their age, has a story to tell, thoughts to capture, unfinished business to resolve, goals to achieve. When participants release preconceived ideas, own their power and trust the process the rewards are incalculable.
3 How important do you think it is that people work proactively to improve or maintain their wellbeing?
There can be no doubt that the pandemic and natural disasters have taken a toll on everyone’s sense of well being. The good news is that, in the spirit of being a detective, we can identify proactive steps that we might take to protect our bodies from the stress which can lead to disease. We can explore ways to ‘fill the tank’, feel more life force energy, control any signs of depression and increase our sense of self worth. Marion Milner is one role model. In the early 20th Century she penned a book called ‘A Life of One’s Own’ which provides insights into how, through keeping a simple diary, she strove to observe and identify what would make her happy and what she really wanted from life. Milner observed that she was astounded by her power to access the unconscious and enhance her sense of well being.
4 What do you hope people will be able to take away from engaging?
According to Socrates, true wisdom is knowing what you do not know. So an essential part of knowing yourself must be recognizing the limits of your own wisdom and understanding—knowing what you do genuinely know and knowing what you have yet to learn. I hope participants leave these sessions knowing more about themselves and perhaps most importantly, leave with a thirst to gain more insight into what they have yet to learn. Ideally they will take up the challenge to learn more.
5 What inspires you to engage in this kind of work?
In the premiere episode of Star Trek: Picard (CBS, 2020), “Remembrance,” former captain and admiral Jean-Luc Picard is asked, “Have you ever been a stranger to yourself?” to which Picard replies, “Many, many times.” I have had this experience of being a stranger to myself many, many times as well, times in which the current version of myself (my actions, my sense or perceptions of myself, and so on) seems at odds with how I presently view myself, how I envision my ideal self, or how I have viewed myself in the past. I am inspired to engage in this work because participants come away being less of a stranger to themselves and knowing more about themselves and their innate creative ability.