navigating your story

self-care, self-discovery, self-expression

Mug, books, and journal

Your stories, your self.

What is the story you tell yourself when you look in the mirror?

When you reflect on the day?

When you think about your past, your present, your future?

Those stories shape how you see yourself and the world around you, and how you respond to situations and stressors. Some of these stories are positive, hopeful, wholehearted. But others are full of fear, shame, and internalized stereotypes and negative stories.

Self-care coaching can help you thrive by helping you develop sustainable and effective habits and strategies, regardless of the ongoing challenges in your life.

Narrative coaching can help you see clearly what stories you’ve internalized, and then intentionally keep the helpful ones and transform the helpful into something more whole, more true, more you.

And these two focuses work together holistically to give you immediately applicable coping strategies and support as you examine and transform your inner narratives. You already are the protagonist and the narrator of your own story – nobody can give you that power, and nobody can take it away. But often we lose connection to our deep self-storying abilities, and self-care and narrative coaching can help us get back in touch with that knowledge.

I can also help you write a new story through my “Transformative Year” package.

Coaching

Coaching

We can work together one-on-one, or with a group. My coaching style is collaborative and holistic – we will co-create a plan that will help you navigate, understand, and transform your life story in a way that feels sustainable, stable, and wholehearted.

Self-Care Resources

Are you looking for immediate and accessible help? You’ll find resources here. This category will be growing over the next year as I complete projects. These free resources are made possible by my patrons on Patreon and I appreciate it so much.

Writing in the Margins Workshops

From writing intensives, retreats, and groups to the monthly Smutty Story Circle, Writing in the Margins has offered accessible, sex-positive, queer- and trans-friendly, intersectional feminist writing spaces for the last seven years. We focus on creative non-fiction, fiction, and poetry.

Editing

Have you written something amazing? I can edit your fiction, creative non-fiction, academic paper, dissertation, or book. I bring a gentle and insightful editing voice, and a keen eye for detail. I read for grammar and style, of course, but what I’m best at is reading for intersectionality, accessibility, and queer and feminist politics.

Sostar Self Care on Facebook

Sostar Self Care on Facebook

Tiffany Sostar added a new photo.

It's Monday! That means it's #magpiemonday. Each Magpie Monday is an invitation to you, to approach your day with a magpie's sharp eye - look for the treasures that are hiding, pull them into your nest. Watch for unexpected beauty, for trash that can be reclaimed (what a rich metaphor that is!), and for those hidden moments and mementos that you can scoop up from the gutters and from under the dead leaves.... Find the thing that gleams in the gloom, and grab onto it.

This week I was reminded of another magpie lesson - it is okay (more than okay!) to bring things into your living and working space that bring you joy.

Whatever makes your heart happy - the kitten calendar, the treasured gems and rocks, the stuffed animals, the high school trophy, the pictures and tea collections and Lego and other knick knacks and mementors - there's nothing wrong with that.

This is particularly important for poor and otherwise marginalized folks to know, because the glorification of minimalism is directly but often invisibly tied to class, and there can be a lot of internalized shame when it comes to collecting and enjoying small physical items.

Give yourself permission today to add or remove something from your physical space in order to make it feel safer, more comforting, and more you.

What items in your physical space help you feel grounded and joyful?

There's no shame in allowing yourself to enjoy the things that you enjoy.

Image description: A magpie is standing in a field of yellow tall grass. The bird is in profile, and leaning forward. Photo credit to the fabulous Richelle Schindler. If you'd like your magpie picture featured, let me know!
... See MoreSee Less

Its Monday! That means its #magpiemonday. Each Magpie Monday is an invitation to you, to approach your day with a magpies sharp eye - look for the treasures that are hiding, pull them into your nest. Watch for unexpected beauty, for trash that can be reclaimed (what a rich metaphor that is!), and for those hidden moments and mementos that you can scoop up from the gutters and from under the dead leaves.... Find the thing that gleams in the gloom, and grab onto it.

This week I was reminded of another magpie lesson - it is okay (more than okay!) to bring things into your living and working space that bring you joy. 

Whatever makes your heart happy - the kitten calendar, the treasured gems and rocks, the stuffed animals, the high school trophy, the pictures and tea collections and Lego and other knick knacks and mementors - theres nothing wrong with that.

This is particularly important for poor and otherwise marginalized folks to know, because the glorification of minimalism is directly but often invisibly tied to class, and there can be a lot of internalized shame when it comes to collecting and enjoying small physical items. 

Give yourself permission today to add or remove something from your physical space in order to make it feel safer, more comforting, and more you. 

What items in your physical space help you feel grounded and joyful?

Theres no shame in allowing yourself to enjoy the things that you enjoy.

Image description: A magpie is standing in a field of yellow tall grass. The bird is in profile, and leaning forward. Photo credit to the fabulous Richelle Schindler. If youd like your magpie picture featured, let me know!

Margaret Anderson likes this

Tiffany SostarThis article goes into the class politics of decluttering, and I appreciate the analysis. www.nytimes.com/2016/07/18/opinion/the-class-politics-of-decluttering.html?_r=0

Opinion | The Class Politics of Decluttering26 minutes ago
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I just sent out the content for Week One in the Feeling Towards Wholeness course. Today is your last day to sign up!

"Healing is not linear.

Recovery is a long, winding, meandering, circular, frankly just really effing annoying process.

In this course, we’re going to figure out which direction to start moving in, so that we can take back a bit of control. Heartbreak, trauma, and burn-out are often states of incapacity – we don’t know what to do or how to do it, where to go or how to get there.

This week we will be thinking about what we need and what resources we have available, so that we can start to chart our course through the gloom.

We’re map-making in the land of “here there be dragons” but we’re not alone. We will get through this."

The course is a six-week, online, interactive course focusing on emotional self-care for heartbreak, trauma, and burnout. We'll be talking about vicarious and secondary trauma, too, so if you're working in a helping profession (or you're just experiencing a lot of pain resulting from seeing the pain in the world and in your communities), this course is designed for you, too.

The cost is $125 ($60 for Patreon supporters), with sliding scale and pay-by-trade available. Send me a message if you want to sign up!
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I just sent out the content for Week One in the Feeling Towards Wholeness course. Today is your last day to sign up!

Healing is not linear. 

Recovery is a long, winding, meandering, circular, frankly just really effing annoying process.

In this course, we’re going to figure out which direction to start moving in, so that we can take back a bit of control. Heartbreak, trauma, and burn-out are often states of incapacity – we don’t know what to do or how to do it, where to go or how to get there. 

This week we will be thinking about what we need and what resources we have available, so that we can start to chart our course through the gloom. 

We’re map-making in the land of “here there be dragons” but we’re not alone. We will get through this.

The course is a six-week, online, interactive course focusing on emotional self-care for heartbreak, trauma, and burnout. Well be talking about vicarious and secondary trauma, too, so if youre working in a helping profession (or youre just experiencing a lot of pain resulting from seeing the pain in the world and in your communities), this course is designed for you, too.

The cost is $125 ($60 for Patreon supporters), with sliding scale and pay-by-trade available. Send me a message if you want to sign up!

Tiffany Sostar added a new photo.

Today's #stickfiguresunday is all about self-care for surviving to-do lists of doom. (To-do lists of doom are to-do lists that feel overwhelming. Not all of them are long, and some long ones aren't doom - if it feels like a doom list to you, then it is!)

The suggestions are:
- Set a timer. Give yourself 15 minutes to an hour to work on a task, and then work until the timer goes off or the task is done. Having a set amount of time to focus on each task can take away the pressure to do every task at once.

- Pause and breathe. It seems counter-intuitive to pause, but making sure that you're bringing your breath as far into your lungs as possible and giving yourself some space to think can really help calm the panic and get you centred and grounded.

- Choose three. Pick three tasks to focus on for the day. It can help to choose one urgent task (something that has to be done asap), one important task (something that will help you get to your goals), and one easy task (something that you know you'll be able to succeed at).

- Ask for help. This one is so hard! But it makes a difference, and builds your social resilience. If all of your tasks are solo tasks, ask for help choosing three, or for help staying encouraged.

- Nourish yourself - water, tea, coffee, food. Feed your body and keep yourself hydrated so that you can keep working (and also, more importantly, because you are worth caring for, regardless of your productive output!)

- Go outside for 10 minutes. Another counterintuitive break suggestion, but being outside (or near your houseplants, or looking out a window) can make a big difference in helping you get calm, centered, and grounded. You will have an easier time managing the Doom List if you feel grounded and connected. And time in nature, or near nature, or thinking about nature, can help put those Doom Lists in perspective.

- Be a cheerleader. For yourself OR for someone else. Track your small wins - every fifteen minutes of work, a gold star! Every small step completed, gold star! Every decision made, gold star! Every self-care action taken, gold star! This helps whether you're doing it for yourself or for a friend, because helping other people can be a great boost for our sense of strength and value. And helping ourselves does the same!

You've got this, friends!

Image description: A stick figure has a huge to-do list. For each suggestion, there is a small illustration (a clock for "set a timer", a meditating stick figure for "pause and breathe", two stick figures for "ask for help", a mug, cup, and plate with a salad and sandwich on it for "nourish yourself", a person and a tree for "get outside for ten minutes", and a stick figure saying Yes!! Success!! for "be a cheerleader."
... See MoreSee Less

Todays #stickfiguresunday is all about self-care for surviving to-do lists of doom. (To-do lists of doom are to-do lists that feel overwhelming. Not all of them are long, and some long ones arent doom - if it feels like a doom list to you, then it is!)

The suggestions are:
 - Set a timer. Give yourself 15 minutes to an hour to work on a task, and then work until the timer goes off or the task is done. Having a set amount of time to focus on each task can take away the pressure to do every task at once.

 - Pause and breathe. It seems counter-intuitive to pause, but making sure that youre bringing your breath as far into your lungs as possible and giving yourself some space to think can really help calm the panic and get you centred and grounded.

 - Choose three. Pick three tasks to focus on for the day. It can help to choose one urgent task (something that has to be done asap), one important task (something that will help you get to your goals), and one easy task (something that you know youll be able to succeed at).

 - Ask for help. This one is so hard! But it makes a difference, and builds your social resilience. If all of your tasks are solo tasks, ask for help choosing three, or for help staying encouraged.

 - Nourish yourself - water, tea, coffee, food. Feed your body and keep yourself hydrated so that you can keep working (and also, more importantly, because you are worth caring for, regardless of your productive output!)

 - Go outside for 10 minutes. Another counterintuitive break suggestion, but being outside (or near your houseplants, or looking out a window) can make a big difference in helping you get calm, centered, and grounded. You will have an easier time managing the Doom List if you feel grounded and connected. And time in nature, or near nature, or thinking about nature, can help put those Doom Lists in perspective.

 - Be a cheerleader. For yourself OR for someone else. Track your small wins - every fifteen minutes of work, a gold star! Every small step completed, gold star! Every decision made, gold star! Every self-care action taken, gold star! This helps whether youre doing it for yourself or for a friend, because helping other people can be a great boost for our sense of strength and value. And helping ourselves does the same!

Youve got this, friends! 

Image description: A stick figure has a huge to-do list. For each suggestion, there is a small illustration (a clock for set a timer, a meditating stick figure for pause and breathe, two stick figures for ask for help, a mug, cup, and plate with a salad and sandwich on it for nourish yourself, a person and a tree for get outside for ten minutes, and a stick figure saying Yes!! Success!! for be a cheerleader.

Kelly Sullivan, Joseph Goethals and 3 others like this

Vincci Tsui-LowLove these tips!

1 day ago

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Know your stories, know yourself.

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