Friends and Mentors excerpt

Friends and Mentors

(Excerpt from the book, “The Heart’s Mind: How Unconscious Responses in Life and Work Naturally Improve Our Lives While We Make Other Plans.”

With open hearts and enduring patience many friends let me find words to express what I saw with my heart’s eye. They allowed me to see my thoughts from their perspective and to conceive of publishing a book. In Oregon, Joy Denison has been a constant support in the development of published materials about my work. We have explored The Cycle of Unconscious ResponseTM from opposite natures and a common faith, comparing application and results since 2011. Joy’s encouragement helped me produce a small book for Kindle in 2012, “Time and Life Cycles: The spirit’s journey through time.” [A new 2018 edition is now available: “Time and Life Cycles.”]

Honest commentary by those who reviewed the book drafts was critical to developing fullness of thought and greater satisfaction in writing. My writer son Evan Martin could speak to the craft of effective writing. Ever practical, my daughter Carrie Erickson challenged me about the direct relevance of the abstract ideas. Colleague and friend David H. Lee saved me from publishing a work that was too safe to be effective. And artist/editor/friend Maria Battista added a nice polish on the book’s structure. Others gave their input and reactions that helped the book evolve to reach my audience more effectively.

Two insightful professional counselors, Valerie Montgomery, LPC, Beyond Beautiful, and Sandra “Jean” Parcher, LPC collaborated with me to publicly air my ideas in a yearlong project called “Unconsciously Good” from November 2014 to October 2015. Purely amateur broadcasting, we simply recorded and shared with subscribers unscripted conversations about The Cycle of Unconscious ResponseTM.

There were a few who actually explored their own process of unconscious response with me: Uyen Tran Adams (now an experienced RN), my visionary sister Susan DeHerrera, and with the greatest attention, Joy Denison. With endless patience and goodness an old friend David A. Smith helped me find the first words out of my deep searching. There are friends whose feedback about The Cycle helped more than they know: Renee Sokoloff, Linda Friend, Wendy Carter, Rosemary DeHerrera, Darleen Daniels, Susanne Pyle, Summer Weisel, and Susan Edwards. In the entrepreneurs’ gallery: Web site building leader Ben Wehde with UnleashU, videographer Anthony R. W. Lopez, and start-up strategist Jim Wittenburg.

The metamorphosis during the years at Colorado Mesa University (formerly Mesa State College) was under the guidance and freedom-giving encouragement of my instructors: In art and design, Carolyn Quinn-Hensley; drawing and painting, Joshua Butler; art advisor Deborah K. Snider; Dr. Steven Bradley in his passion for art history; the exacting English professor and writing guide, Dr. William Wright. The presence is missed of two excellent instructors who have passed away: Dr. Gordon Gilbert, who brought his love of physics to art and insisted I come to his mind-bending class, and professor of anthropology Dr. Barry Michrina who knew that, if done correctly, my study of artists as a culture would change me—and it did.

As a journalist and ethnographer I was compelled to capture instinctive words of wisdom spoken by artists and entrepreneurs. I found my own artist heart through interviews with such artists as John Anglim, Aimee Bourget, Malcolm Childers, Tish Collins, Cindy Holst, Jim Miller, Jan Roberts, and Mark Sonmor in Grand Junction, Colorado, whose works and spirit were the subject of my capstone thesis project in 2008. In Colorado Springs: Ellen Brown, Juel Grant, Liz Lata, and Douglas and Mallori Rouse are subjects of an in-process documentary about local artists.

The wisdom of Juel Grant, Maria Battista, Nora Hardin, Wendy Carter, Kris and Liese Chavez, Tracy Miller, Cass Mullane, and Chris Tatrn helped me acclimate to the Colorado Springs art community. In my travels for the beautiful Colorado Journeys magazine, published by the intrepid Kat Rhein of Western Colorado, I enjoyed the gracious attention of artists Frances Dodd and Allan McConnell, Dan Masimer, James Vilona, John Wilbar, and numerous artists from Denver to Trinidad.

Over the years health and mindfulness practitioners stepped in to sharpen me in body, mind, and soul, each one amazing and unique in their respective practices: chiropractor Bruce Davis for cranial specific therapy, Barbara Leach for intuitive Rolfing, Yolanda Del Hierro for craniosacral and brain integration therapies, and Susan Blue for somatic therapy.

Some of the toughest critics and staunchest supporters are my family. Their love and concern have been lifelong and constant, with all the ups and downs that form the undergrowth and nurturing of life: My daughter Carrie Martin Erickson and son Evan Martin; my grandchildren Keegan, Blake, Kendra, and Ryder and his family; my sisters, my sister-in-law and my brother, with all their families, and the special mentorship and encouragement of my kindred-spirit aunt, Marylouise Tate.

Each person made an indelible impression on my heart from an inimitable being and unique perspective. I am thankful for every positive and negative experience that connected me to the whole of humanity.