susanfog7740367907723_8285860829368854186_n

My name is Susan Michael Barrett. I’m a teacher, writer, and bird-watcher with a remarkable job. I listen as people unravel personal difficulty using open-ended questions. Here is a two-minute hello.

And, a little more.

Twenty-some years ago in a crack-of-light-seeping-through sort of way, I began to notice that my unresolved experiences negatively affected other experiences. I felt uncomfortable, sort of like sitting on a sand burr but pretending it wasn’t there. The ever-so-slight, constant prick became a deeper discomfort caused by my inability and unwillingness to sit with unpleasant feelings.

Then something happened: my son died unexpectedly.

With the help of family and friends, teachings*, therapy, workshops, books, silent retreats, and the gut-honest and spunky-real courage of others who use personal adversity as a gateway to insight, I began to look within, feel and heal.

Raw and vulnerable, I created a list of questions to face my problems. Hesitantly open and a little curious, I began a question-guided writing practice.

Writing responses to the questions changed the way I see, work with, and respond to my experiences. That writing practice is what I now call Wonder Anew.

*My work is inspired by the teachings of Pema Chodron, Viktor Frankl, Thich Nhat Hanh, Tim Olmsted, Carl Rogers, and Virginia Satir.