Mini update: free Rainbow Zen Habits wallpaper

zenhabitsdesktop

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

Because so many people loved the free Zen Habits poster that my website crashed and because I’m over the moon wild excited to have new lovely souls visiting GoddessGuidebook lands and because I’ve drunk too many chai lattes today and because someone sweetly asked…

I’ve made a desktop wallpaper of the poster inspired by the Zen muse Leo Babauta.

Download your own rainbow zen habits wallpaper bling here.

Now let’s go out & have a completely scrumptious day!

Big heart you,

___



Video Goddess: Career Guidance for Young Goddesses

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

Today’s post is a Video Ask Goddess Leonie! Wahoo!

I was recently asked by a creative & soulful young goddess for career guidance. She wanted to know what I did as a job after I left school or college, and how I got to be doing the things I am doing now.

Here’s my video response… below is also some of my notes on the subject for anyone who wants more goss 🙂

Leonie’s Way Long Career Guidance Notes

{Eat and Pray}

When I left school, I was a bit frazzled after boarding school and exams and study. I needed some time to reintegrate, so I went and lived in Malaysia for a couple of months on my own as an exchange student. It was a completely wonderful experience to get out of my head and comfort zone and find myself again (whilst alone in a foreign, non-English speaking country). I ate a lot of durian and mangosteens and went to the movies and read a lot. I went to a lot of mosques and temples, stayed in tiny villages and big cities, and got really into Buddhism. It was really precious.

{Then, Love}

I moved back to my hometown afterwards to rest and connect back with my family and get back to myself again. I’d been at boarding school for two years and I just needed to be home on the farm with my horses and dog again, to eat biscuits and cheese at sunset under the tree everyday. I planned on moving back to the big city after a year to go to university, but life happened to me and it changed all my plans.

I fell in love with an older man at my workplace. He was the most beautiful man I’d ever laid eyes on. And he just happened to be Chris. And we were so enamoured with each other we moved in together after a month. My life plans got changed, because there wasn’t just a Me anymore. There was a Me & My Most Beautiful Man In The World.

{The town named after a town is bound to be stupid}

A year later, we moved to a city called Townsville that was near my home town and I went to university for six months. We really didn’t like it there. Any town that is named TownTown is going to be stupid. That’s the best piece of wisdom I can ever share. hee hee hee!

{Sacred note: I’m sure Town-Town is just fine for other people. But it made it really clear to me that I wasn’t meant to be there. Places have a funny way of doing that.}

{Home again, home again jiggity jig}

We ended up packing back up and moving home to save some money.

So I worked as a receptionist and legal secretary and did university part time by distance education while we were saving money. We stayed in a tiny flat and I was bored but we had this crazy idea to move across the country to a city neither of us had been to before.

The only two things I can remember from that time is this:

1. University studies kept me sane in an otherwise boring job. I studied Australian Aboriginal studies and Journalism part time and they made me dream dream dream of my passions. You always have to feel like you are moving towards your big beautiful dream, I think 🙂

2. Our flat was at the end, and our patio and tiny patch of grass was secluded. A big mango tree stood at the end. One night, there was a wild lightning storm, and I jumped out of the shower and ran outside to dance beneath the soaking, gloaming, crashing sky. It was magnificent.

{Taking a giant leap}

We barely had the money to move, but my brother lent us money. I quit my job, we packed up our car Georgia with all our possessions and drove across the country for four days.

It was one crazy giant leap to take.

Somehow, it worked so beautifully.

In three days, I was a receptionist in a government agency. And then I fell into a website editing role. And it was so lovely there I never left.

And Chris found his own thing, and we found a cottage to rent. And it was so lovely we never left there either, we ended up buying it.

{But what was Leonie really doing?}

I had a job. And a house. And an amazing partner.

And I was still working out what I wanted to do.

I kept studying at university part time for a couple of years while I was working. I was so passionate and LOVED sooooo many things that in the end I ended up taking 12 different topics at three different universities.

I studied:

journalism

art history

Australian Aboriginal studies

Philosophy

economic history

social science

psychology

and lots of other things.

And in the meantime, I kept on playing around with things I was interested in – I loved spirituality and books. I painted and created for fun. I started going to women’s circles, which totally changed my life. I spent a month writing a little journal book I called “Today I grew like a wildflower.” I shared what I was creating with other people through blogs and forums and I started getting commissions and it was really fun. It was just my fun side project that I did when I wasn’t working or studying or being totally in love.

And then one day, I was walking back to work after an art history lecture, and I thought:

This is close to what I love, but it isn’t what I love. Why am I studying what art other people make when I just want to make my own art and do my thing?

{Micro leaping towards my dreams}

So I stopped going to university. At first it was just for six months, but then a year rolled by. And I just didn’t miss it.

I kept on creating and working out what I wanted to do and sharing it, and eventually I had enough creativity business that I asked at work if I could only work four days a week. And then two years later, I got so busy again that I asked if I could only work three days a week. I just keep working less hours there when I have enough abundance and business ju-ju to work for myself.

{The Path of Getting Here}

When I was in high school, there was nothing in the job books about what I’m doing now. It’s not like I was thinking “When I grow up, I want to be a sacred goddess guide!” I wanted to do something creative. I knew it would be different. I knew I wanted to help people change and grow.

So my path has been finding a way that I can share that, and that other gorgeous souls can benefit from that. It’s a path of evolving and changing and tweaking and growing. It’s the hugest job I’ve ever had – learning how to Be Leonie and share my wisdom and gifts with the world. I think it’s the job that we all have.

Leonie’s Tips for Creating Your Beautiful Career

1. You don’t have to know everything right now. It will come to you. And you’ll continue tweaking and shifting and learning as you go. There are some creative and sacred things I loved doing a year ago that I don’t at the moment, and I want to try out other things.

2. Treat your occupation as being the best you you can be. Try out all your interests and passions. See what really calls to you. Know that there are so many ways for you to start building a business around that.

3. Cubicle jobs don’t have to be doomsday. They can be an amazing help in giving you some income while you play and try things out without freaking out about making all the money you need from playing. Have fun with it, and make your cubicle job as fun as you can. Enjoy yourself and enjoy the people you are around.

4. There are so so so many opportunities now to make a living being you. It takes time. It takes education. It takes courage and discipline. It also is a whole lot of fun. For many years all I read was creativity books and spiritual books. Then I realised I needed to build my business muscle as it would help me build a vehicle to share my work with the world. So I’ve been doing that, and it’s been an amazing experience. It’s really, really helped.

5. It’s okay to not be a full-time-income-earning Goddess of You-occupation right now. That  will come in time. The most important thing is to enjoy the journey, trust the process, keep growing, keep exploring who you are, and your gifts and how you want to share them with the world.

6. It’s okay for people not to understand your career and life choices. My parents haven’t always been happy about my decisions, but they’ve worked out perfectly for me. They’ve been just what I needed at the time.

7. When you are working in a cubicle job, have time every week to play with your passions. It makes a HUGGGGE difference! Yayyyyyy!

It’s a beautiful, beautiful world out there and everything is possible. Trust your beautiful self and your instinct, and walk your journey with grace, joy, peace and paint on your fingers and ink on your palms. Do what you want to do, and create a really happy space for you to do it from.

You are so very loved,

Free poster: Key Zen Habits

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

I’ve sprouted on and on before here and here about how much I adore Leo Babauta‘s work. Last night I was clearing through my piles of stuff and found a lined piece of paper that I refer to everyday – with his zen habits scrawled on them. And because everything is better when it’s rainbow & visuals, I made a poster of it. Then I made another copy of it for my work desk… and then thought… why not just share it with the world too?

So here it is, beyoootiful souls ~ Goddess Leonie’s take on the 12 Key Zen Habits poster.

I’ve also created desktop wallpaper version of it for you to download too. Rainbow zen-ness both online and  offline 🙂

Download your own printable PDF poster here.

zenhabitsdesktop

Download your 1024 x 768 desktop wallpaper here.


{Please note: Leo has an uncopyright on his work & is happy for it to be shared around.}

EnJOY ~ I so hope it helps & inspires you as much as Zen Habits has me.

Have a gorgeous, joyful day dearhearts!

___

Want early-goddess discounts?

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

Me & God Chris are warming ourselves with chai & flannellette pj’s after hiking in the rain with one of our dear friends to our favourite mossy rock. It’s only Autumn here, but snow was dancing on the top of the mountain we were playing beneath. It was cold. And rainy. And utterly beautiful. The things we do for mossy rocks!

After a couple of months of re-energising & cave-time after the completely amazing Creative Goddess ecourse, there’s some beautiful new things brewing in Goddess Leonie-land that I’ll be sharing v soon. If you’re on my mailing list, you’ll be getting an early-goddess discount on said gorgeous-new-things.

If you’re not on the list, get on now (you can also sign up below) 🙂 Mailing list goddesses get the goodies!

Wahoooosicles!

Have a pumpkin-soupliscious day 🙂
You=remarkable.

Ask Goddess Leonie: How to create your own website for your big dream

Hola gorgeous Goddesses!

Today’s blog post is an Ask Goddess Leonie post!

A gorgeous goddess asked: I want to set up a website for my (insert great big dream)… can you please recommend what to use???

I surely can! I’ve been blogging & website-ing for five-ish years now, and managed to use four systems during that time.

So you’ve got a great big wonderful dream. What’s the best way of sharing it with the world via a website?

My webstory

I started my blog in 2004 using a free blog hosted on Blogger. It sat at turquoisejourney.blogspot.com. Four months later, I decided I wanted a website & blog that sat at my own domain, so I bought website hosting and a domain name, and used Blogger to push onto my website (so my blog sat at www.leonielife.com/journal.html) and FrontPage to create my website. FrontPage was then made defunct (boo!), so about eighteen months ago, I needed to streamline, so I created a website & blog using Weebly. Weebly was great for a basic website but I got frustrated by its limitations and found it didn’t perform brilliantly on search engines. Now I use a free platform – WordPress – to blog & design my website.

So yes, I’ve played with them all, and am so happy to give my thoughts & advice on how to create your own website that reflects magical, magical you.

My 2 second recommendation

To get started, you can always go for a free blog through Blogger.
To make it even bigger, go Weebly.
If you want a rocking website and greater flexibility, WordPress is the way to go.

To blogger or not to blogger?

Here’s all the yay! & boo! points of Blogger to decide for yourself:

Some of its yay! points are:

  • easy to set up
  • free

Some its boo! points are:

  • it only has blog functionality – you can’t design a webpage around it
  • it’s ding dang obvious that its a blogger format
  • not as customisable as WordPress
  • doesn’t have as much functionality & widgety goodness as WordPress
  • it doesn’t look as professional as WordPress.

To Weebly or not to Weebly?

Here’s all the yay! & boo! points of Weebly to decide for yourself:

Some of its yay! points are:

  • easy to set up
  • basic account is free, pro account is pretty nicely priced
  • you can have a blog and website in one
  • comes with pre-installed designs so you just click and play.

Some its boo! points are:

  • the biggest boo point you will find straight away is this: you have pre-installed designs. And you can’t change them. At least, not unless you are a coding superwiz like Sone (or you hire one).
  • your website will look like other Weebly websites
  • won’t look as spectacularly YOU-ish as WordPress can.

If you want to start with something that’s really, really easy, use Blogger or Weebly. Then when you’re ready for mega-deliciousness with your energy splashed all over it, go WordPress. You deserve something that’s as big and powerful as your dreams are.

WordPress challenged me at first, but now I’m converted.

Don’t get me wrong. WordPress is not as easy-peasy as Blogger. In fact, when I first made the switch, I thought WTF? What have I gotten myself into?

And then I persevered and read up on stuff, and found cool things to make the transition easier… and am so happy to share them with you!

What’s the boos! about WordPress?

  • You’ll have to buy your own domain name & hosting, whereas Weebly & Blogger is free {unless you go for a Pro account at Weebly}. This *is* actually a good thing in the long run!
  • It’s much more technical than the other two. There are fun ways around this though, and it can be fun to learn.

What are the yays! about WordPress?

  • It’s a powerful blogging & website designing framework. And it’s free. Yay! It’s a website maker & blogging machine all in one. You don’t need to buy website designer software.
  • You can settle in and really make it your own.
  • There are hundreds of free plugins you can use with it that make WordPress uber powerful.
  • Nearly all of the larger blogs use WordPress. Because it’s that good.
  • If you’ve been blogging using other major blogging platforms, you can import all your old posts into WordPress with a click of the button. Thus why this website has 4 years of archives from my Blogger days! Weee 🙂

What you need to know to make WordPress easier

Disclosure: I’m really *not* a website guru – the contents of this post is pretty much all my website knowledge, designed to help you get more information about creating your great-big dream website. If you need extra specific advice, Google is your friend. Or a lovely website designer. 🙂

Getting started with WordPress

To get started with WordPress, you need your own domain name & website hosting.

To explain these are simply as possible if you’re confused by their difference: Your domain name is the thing that looks like www.yourmagnificentwork.com, and the hosting is the space where your website sits and gets accessed by all your adoring fans. The domain name is your street address, the website hosting is the land your house sits on.

Now, how to gets the street address and land for your great big dream website?

You can usually get a domain name included or ultra-cheap when you buy hosting.

Also – to get your head wrapped around WordPress, I can totally recommend the Digging into WordPress e-book.

There is also the wonderful course: Website in a Weekend.

Website hosting – where to go

I spent a lot of time deciding on website hosting, so I’m totally happy to help you choose yours.

After wandering around with a couple of other hosting companies, I’ve turned and moved in with Blue Host (affiliate link).

And I fell in love, when I totally wasn’t expecting to. They’ve got unlimited space and stuff.

But most of all, they’ve been nice. And it’s fairly easy to navigate.

And they have one-press WordPress install.

Designly goodness

If you want to design your own blog, woo hoo! I’ve done that many times, and it can be really fun to learn. It does however take a little bit of time and software (i.e. Photoshop). I decided late last year that I needed to spend less time working out design stuff, and more time doing the stuff I really love, so I did a butt load of research into designers when it came to finding mine. I’m sure there are loads of great designers out there – but even though I did my research I still managed to pick one that didn’t give me a design when promised (or then promised. or then promised). Consequently I’m very pro-using someone you can be recommended to.

I can highly recommend Scooter Girl Designs. Sone is the coding queen of Goddess Guidebook, and an awesome design goddess. She also happens to be one of my besties, our roomie at the moment and she’s a Taurean – so she’s practical AND creative. Her specialty is helping creative & soulful entrepreneurs translate their big ideas into amazing websites to share with the world.

Some other ways for you to get a design that shrieks LUSCIOUS you-ness:

Websites for women : Two amazing women run Your Website Coach – and Websites for women courses to help you step-by-step be empowered & tech savvy to create & maintain your own website. So very, very cool.

Plugins : These are free tools that you can download and insert into your WordPress to make it even more powerful. It’s like blog bling. Functional blog bling. Stuff that can make it easier for you.

You can also buy or find ready made themes for your WordPress website. Themes are the design style of your website and there are as many themes out there available as there are stars in the sky.

Here’s some places you can start:

Themes Forest : You can buy ready made themes at Themes Forest to pop straight onto your website. Love love love!

DIY Themes : Thesis makes it much much easier to do-it-yourself. Funny that. I wonder why they call it DIY? 🙂

You can also search & find free WordPress themes really easily. Here’s two places to start.

Now what?

Are you feeling about a thousand percent overwhelmed by all that stuff?
That’s totally, totally cool sweetie. You’re not supposed to be able to *get* and *implement* all of this stuff all at once.

You don’t need to treat this as a main course of information. Just pick and choose and nibble like it’s an entree. Choose what is easy and right for you right now to do. Don’t let the Big Overwhelm Of Everything stop you from starting right now. You can always shift, change and fix later on.

I hope this info helps you in creating your website for your great big, glorious dream. You are magic. You deserve it.

Group hugs, goddesses!

_____

If you’re feeling called to retreat, a reminder that the gorgeous Goddess of Comfort Jennifer Louden is running her Virtual Retreat Refresher on finding peace during uncertain times tomorrow (April 25).