Author Archives: Margi Brown Ash

About Margi Brown Ash

Name: Margi Brown Ash Location: Australia Margi works as a theatre maker/director/performer/coach. Her company, 4change coaching, hosts workshops that appeal to artists and those who wish to use the arts to enrich their personal as well as professional lives. Margi also works with groups of creatives and teams to develop presentations, performances and performance art pieces. She works in both the creative and business sector to enhance working partnerships and develop strong group dynamics within the organization. Margi has recently formed Force of Circumstance (FOC) Theatre Company, the first intentional, professional intergenerational theatre company in Australia.

This photo was taken at State Library’s “Year of Belonging” festivities last year

February 3 2018 will see an energetic and enthusastic group of people gather in Pullenvale Brisbane Australia for our yearly creative arts workshop. We will begin with a bridging-in exercise, followed by sharing our emerging dreams and possible goals for the new year. We will engage in artmaking, movement, storytelling and lots of laughter as we move towards a clarity of purpose and intention.

I love hosting reflective workshops at the beginning of each year, where we gather, make new friends and make still-to-be-created dreams come to the fore as well as plan and re-story what it is we want to add to our lives to make it richer, more vibrant.

We begin with ritual, one of the strongest healing processes we can engage in. We create our own personal rituals that we will engage with throughout the year.

For me, this holiday season has been one of reflection, connecting with family and friends and deciding on a few new challenges: yoga teacher training for one, improving my cooking skills another. Whatever it is we want to engage with, we can, we just need to make it clear to ourselves and others what we are wanting and where we are wanting to go. We may be engaged in a project that began several years ago: is this the year of completion? We may have finished a long term project and want to begin another…

How do we formulate work that is fulfilling and worthwhile to both self and others? How do we engage in activities that heal and stimulate? I feel the best way of accessing ‘what we may not know we know’ is through creative conversation, engaging with friends and colleagues over a cup of tea and taking turns in talking about one’s life and how we are either satisfied with the status quo (lucky you) or how we want to adjust one or two things in order to move forward with a little more zest. It is through conversation, creative conversations, that change occurs. We cannot do it in a vacuum…

So, this year, reach out! Request a cup of tea from friends and colleagues. Sit down and share your thoughts, in exchange for them sharing theirs. Everyone loves a rich conversation!

Bill, my partner and I have decided that this year is “Our Year of Belonging”, the expression taken from our workshop that is coming up at 4change on February 3, which goes by the same name. We began on January 1, ended up in hot water a couple of times as we drove from Sydney to Brisbane, but managed very quickly to recognise the patterns that were clashing…in our case, we realised that cultural stories relating to gender, and one’sexpectation of these gendered roles were the main culprits (so far!). We are trying, as a couple, to live in learning…and to keep strongly in mind that it is not what happens to us, but how we handle it. We are both excited about this committment, or declaration, to each other, and a little nervous…change is always challenging and we have committed to living a year of total awareness (if it is even possible), something that we have only assumed we were doing in the past.

And that reminds me of the difference between habit and ritual. Sometimes in coaching sessions I ask my client what rituals they have in place, and the response is more likely to be a list of habits rather than rituals. Much has been written about ritual, but briefly, to suit our purposes, rituals require intentional action, rather than habitual action. Rituals heal us: rather than just sitting down to eat, if we turn our meal time into a ritual we very deliberately set the table with awareness, we light candles with awareness…whatever we need to do in order to say “We are now eating together, sharing a meal, talking, listening, hearing each other”.

Here’s to a year full of ritual, deliberate awareness of our actions in order to create a rich and vibrant moment, hour, day, week and year.

I usually post on my blog, at www.margibrownash.com but I’m browsing 4change website and thought I’d leave a note.

I bet there are many of us running fast, as the year heads to a close…well not quite but almost.
I love the ending of years, a time to look through the months that have passed.

I am presently reading Allan Pease and Barbara Pease’s book “The Answer” and I’m enjoying it. Allan Pease is going to be presenting at the WorkSmart Conference that I am MC’ing later in the week on the Gold Coast, so I am spending several days reading his books. www.peaseinternational.com

The one-liners are really worth remembering, like “A deadline is to your goals what the trigger is on a gun” followed by “A dream is just a dream until you put a deadline on it”. That really had me thinking. I don’t like deadlines, but it is true, as I look back over the year, that it was the deadline that moved me to closure. Not the passion (that was there), nor the conditions (they weren’t bad either) but the deadline…that date that stopped me doing anything except what was required. No dinners out, no theatre dates, no phone calls. And I even delighted in the simplicity of these days. I didn’t have to think about anything but the task at hand.
Another one-liner that I really liked, and learned it by heart. Pease & Pease wrote: “Life begins at the end of your Comfort Zone”. Now this one, this one is worth writing up on our walls, our computer screens, on post-it notes…and everywhere we feel comfortable. Life begins at the end of our comfort zones. That made me feel uncomfortable as I sat in my comfortable chair with my comfortable view and my comfortable dog at my feet. So things are changing. The only thing we can be sure of. is. change.

photo by Barb Lowing

So a new year is about to begin…saying goodbye and hello to 2016-2017

In 2017 we will be conducting a February workshop in Pullenvale where we will focus on our own becoming: how do we move forward and create change in a world that seemingly is heading towards (for many of those in the arts) an uncomfortable fit?
Dates are coming when I work them out.

Margi’s active blog, chats she posts weekly, can be found on www.margibrownash.com

4change coaching will be closed until February 2017: Margi will be in Sydney performing in Prize Fighter at Belvoir Street for the Sydney Festival. Here is a link: http://belvoir.com.au/productions/prize-fighter/

In 2017 Margi will continue to supervise, coach, mentor and counsel those in the arts are wanting more creativity in their private and working life.

Margi’s active blog, chats she posts weekly, can be found on www.margibrownash.com
Some of these posts are posted here in Recent Posts.Margi’s most up to date blog