"FUIMUS - We Have Been"

"FUIMUS - We Have Been!" motto of Clan Bruce


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Friday, 13 July 2018

ONCE UPON A DREAM; I Just Qualified!!!


I have always believed that Friday the 13th is a lucky day for witches. This theory has been reinforced today when the results of finals landed in my inbox.  After five years of tedious essay writing and clinical hours, I am pleased to report that I have passed all sections of my diploma.

This means that I officially qualified as a psychotherapy counsellor today and I am now Marie Bruce Dip. T.C.

I already knew I was on track to pass, but having the official confirmation feels like such a surreal moment.  It means that I will definitely be graduating in cap and gown this autumn with the rest of my classmates; those of us who have passed. Sadly some dropped out along the way, but you get that in any course.  I'm really glad I stuck with it, as five years later I am now a qualified psychotherapist, with letters after my name, and the right to set up a private practice of my own if I want to do so, at some stage in the future.

I feel elated, shaky and a little bit stunned, to be honest.  There were times when I thought I'd never get through it, times when I too wanted to drop out, leave the dreadful tutor behind and forget the whole thing.  But winners never quit and quitters never win, so I stuck it out and now it has all come to a very happy ending. 

Most of all, I feel a huge sense of relief.  Relief that I never, ever have to write a tedious counselling essay again! Relief that all the placement report, clinical hours and paperwork has been approved by the examining board. Relief that the five years of training is actually over - it's finally over! No more essays, reports, classes, workshops, research projects, clinical hours, or admin to do.  That's it now, I've done it all and I have achieved my goal and passed. Now I have a lovely graduation ceremony to look forward to in November, just before my birthday!

It feels weird too, because this has been one of the biggest 'writing projects' I have ever undertaken - five years of essay writing - and yet there is no published book at the end of it all.  That feels a bit strange. But unlike many new counsellors, I won't try to fob-off my compiled essays as a 'book' and expect a commercial publisher to be grateful for it!  Any new books I write, will be written from scratch, to commission, under contract, as usual. 

Also, I do have my new psychotherapy column to start writing, and exactly ten years to the month after sitting down to write my first ever column for Spirit&Destiny, this weekend I will be sitting down to write my first ever psychotherapy column, which launches on August 7th 2018!  So I've come full circle, with a brand new writing topic up my sleeve and the professional credibility to back it, with 20 years of publishing experience and 10 published books under my belt.   I'm hoping to do lots more psychotherapy writing as well, for various publishers, as it is now my new genre of expertise. 

So things are going quite well for me. Slowly, my reinvention of self is taking shape and my writing life is starting to reflect that.  I am free to concentrate on building up this new profession and make the most of my recent training and qualifications in my writing career.  And there will need to be a shopping trip for the perfect graduation outfit too! Meantime, today is definitely a day for me to celebrate...😻
xxx

Saturday, 23 June 2018

MUSICAL DOLL; Queens Don't Hate

"Every jewel on my crown you better believe I earned it
Won't keep people around that don't believe I deserve it...
A Queen's gonna rule just the way she was made
I ain't about to let nobody come and take me off this throne..."
Living well is the best revenge
xxx

Friday, 22 June 2018

WRITER'S DREAM; My New Psychotherapy Column!



I am delighted to announce that I am now hosting my first regular psychotherapy column, and joining a new editorial team!  Launching a psychotherapy column was one of my goals for this year, and it has come about after five years of counsellor training, and the successful publication of several counselling based features, in various magazines. 

It is almost two years since I left behind my witchcraft column with Spirit&Destiny magazine, which you can read about here.   At the time, I knew that I wanted to do more self-help writing, but I wasn't sure if I'd be able to build a whole new reputation with publishers, in this new genre.  It was a stressful time, when I couldn't really see my way ahead - which is unusual for me as I generally know exactly where I'm heading! I just had to keep going and trust that it would all work out for me, and it has. Blind faith works!  

Now I will be writing a new psychotherapy column and providing editorial content each month, launching this summer!  This is a fantastic opportunity, and a firm foot in the door of a different genre.  It is exactly what I hoped for, as I get to write columns on all sorts of issues, both mental and emotional, and offer solutions to my readers, by way of the real techniques of the therapy room.  I see the column as bringing my therapy room practice onto the published page, where my readers can access this knowledge whenever they want to, without them having to pay the hefty price tag of private practice, or wait over six months for the inevitable fob-off of the farcical IAPS system.  Because seriously, who needs that?!

This column brings together everything that I have worked towards for years - all my 20 years of publishing experience, plus my 5 years training and experience in therapeutic practice.  It is the amalgamation I dreamed of bringing into being, right from the start of my training and my very first night class.  This was always my target. 

It is also the beginning of a strong publishing platform in this new area of expertise.  As a writer, this is how you get your name known for a specific topic and build up your brand, by having regular work published with a recognised publisher.  Although I have contributed to this editorial in the past, it was always with Wiccan based features, as that was what I was known for at the time.  So it's fantastic that they want to bring me on board as their resident qualified counsellor, writing a psychotherapy column each month.  I couldn't be more thrilled by it. 

My editors there seem very enthusiastic about my work and ideas, and I know it will be great fun to work with people who are so dialled in to the mental health movement and want to get involved.  Writers need editors who are willing to support their ideas and concepts, even if it is something outside their usual range - we need editors who are prepared to allow us to grow and expand as artists. 


For me, I see this new column as the beginning of a new branch of my writing career.  It is the fresh start I needed in my writing life; a blank slate that I am free to fill as I choose, exploring issues and values and general well-being, helping my readers to help themselves, as I have always done.  I'm really excited to throw myself into it and already my head is brimming with column ideas! 

I feel like my wings are finally un-clipped from the standard witchcraft work I was expected to produce - now I am free to let my words fly in a new direction, with my new counselling profession as a baseline and framework.  I'll post again when I have a date for the actual launch of my column, and I hope that you will check it out and continue to support my work. 

I  do feel incredibly fortunate and so grateful.  Hosting a Wiccan column with S&D for so many years was amazing - now I have been offered a second psychotherapy column with a completely different publisher and I feel so lucky to have achieved this break-through into regular psychotherapy writing. I worked hard for it and it certainly didn't come overnight! I know that my regular readers who have followed my work for years will be just as thrilled as I am by this news.  As for any enemies I might have who may read this - well, they're just going to have to suck it up. Living well is the best revenge. 

In addition, I had a meeting at college yesterday and I now know that I am on track to graduate fully as a counsellor and I will be graduating in cap and gown at the formal graduation ceremony this autumn!  So my Wheel of Fortune seems to be on the rise once more and even though I am quite used to getting what I want, sometimes the generosity of the universe still takes me by surprise. A new era beckons as I begin to write a new kind of column, from a new professional stand-point.  It's a new dream come true! 
π…‘πŸŽœShe always gets what she wants, in the end...🎜
xxx



Wednesday, 20 June 2018

MUSICAL DOLL; Babe

Ever since watching Nine Live of Christmas last December I am obsessed with Brandon Routh. 
He's super hot and I can't stop watching him in this music video...
That Superman tilt of the hat...those dimples...he's so my type.
Be still my beatingπŸ’“!
Enjoy! xxx

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Monday, 18 June 2018

MUSICAL DOLL; Carry You

Is anybody out there?
I've been here the whole time, singing you a song
I will carry you...
xxx

Saturday, 16 June 2018

ONCE UPON A DREAM; Summer Studies



Let us now be up and doing
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing
Learn to labour and to wait.

By Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Back in December 2017 as I was making my goal list for this year I decided that I wanted to do a course in Life-Coaching.  It made sense to me, because this is something I already do in my writing, but I had nothing to prove I could do it, save for ten published books.   So earlier this year I signed up for a course which I have now completed and passed this week. This means that I now have a CPD certificate in Life-Coaching & Mentoring on the way.   It was an interesting course and I am glad that I did it.  I'm sure it will come in handy with my counselling, because the two strategies are  complimentary and go hand in hand.  I already know that life-coaching is a useful aspect of being a writer, as it has played a role in all my books, features and columns up to now and I don't see that changing. 

So that was one of my goals achieved and ticked off my list, but as always, it led on to me setting a new goal - and that was to do a course in Administration, alongside the Life-Coaching.  I thought this would be good to have, to sit in tandem with the Business Etiquette course I passed last year, and also it is useful for me, being self-employed, as I do all my own admin.  So in addition to the new Life-Coaching & Mentoring qualification, I also have a CPD certificate in Business Administration on the way too, as I passed that last week!  

So now I think I'm going to take a couple of months off from studying.  I have all the qualifications in place that I wanted, for the time being anyway, and they all compliment and support each other.  I do think it is important to have something to prove that you can do a task.  Because I'm my own boss I am responsible for my own training and it is something that I enjoy, as I like to learn new skills and feel that I am growing and developing as a person.

I really don't understand people who refuse extra training opportunities, especially if it is the boss or the company you work for who is paying for it.  If you have no qualifications beyond school exams and your employer offers to put you through an NVQ in say Administration, only a fool would refuse and turn their nose up at such an opportunity!   Yes it means doing a couple of extra hours each week for a few months, but unless you are considering leaving the company, I'd say do it!  Because you are there anyway, so you might as well get something beyond a pay cheque out of them - something you can take away with you and which will add to your overall prospects of future employment in an uncertain world. 

There is no point waiting until they start to cut back on staff and then whinging that you have nothing to prove you can do the job, especially if you refused the training  they offered.  The boss will just refer back to your refusal.  And you will look like a complete numpty!  Far better to take on board any training they offer you and start to build up a portfolio of qualifications and certificates, because education is expensive - so if they offer, take it!

I'm really glad that I have spent the last five years in training.  It has given me a great sense of achievement, which in turn has boosted my overall confidence in my own capabilities.  I know now that I am academic, even though I don't enjoy all the hoop jumping tasks involved in academia - I'm still capable of succeeding academically without too much effort.  My counselling tutor even commented on the fact that I was just "coasting along and breezing through the diploma" - and I was!  But as the course wasn't graded, it was simply Pass or Fail, I didn't see the point in spending 12 hours on a task that I could do in 2 hours - that's just bad time-management.  Yet that's exactly what some students were doing and getting increasingly stressed out by it too.

So I would say, do continue to study and learn, but assess how much effort is really needed to pass a course and don't burn yourself out.   

In the last five years I've achieved 9 new academic qualifications and certificates.  I might need to do another course, just to round it up to 10 for my own satisfaction, but overall, I'm very happy with the progress I've made academically.  Now it is time to start thinking of how best to put it all into practice - I can feel a brain-storming session coming on!