I had a wonderful vacation with my family and I am happy to be back home. Interesting how both extremes are true. Going away and coming back have equal value: I no longer feel that I have to choose one or the other. Instead I choose to be curious about how I want to flow between these two poles.

I credit this way of thinking to my study of polarity mapping: a technique developed by Barry Johnson. Polarity mapping is used to navigate paradoxes or dilemmas by making “the invisible tensions visible.” Considered a wisdom organizer, a polarity map acknowledges that there are both upsides and downsides to either pole and provides strategies for moving between the upsides of both poles – the ideal situation. (If you would like a short primer on how to create a Polarity Map, then check out this link.)

Perhaps one of the most useful strategies embedded in polarity mapping is the decision to acknowledge the invisible tensions between opposites. Like many of you, I was encouraged to think in binary terms. Something was either good or bad or right or wrong. This over-simplistic way of viewing the world created a lot of unease and frequently resulted in feeling stuck. I often found myself paralyzed to make a decision for fear of being wrong, or worse, bad.

I suspect that the fear of being wrong or bad is what prevents a lot of us from taking action. I blame part of this fear on the overemphasis of right and good. Right and good are so valued that we have inadvertently encouraged people to suppress or lie about their feelings, to pretend to be something they are not, and to fear making a mistake or failing all in an effort to appear good or to be right.

While there are certainly upsides to being good or right, there are inherent problems too. One problem in particular is assuming that everyone has the same definition of “good” and “right.” Another problem is pretending that you know what will happen to someone who does not meet your definition of good and right. And a third problem is assuming that a person who does not agree with you is wrong or bad.

Acknowledging the invisible tensions that one feels about each pole not only elevates the fear of being wrong: it also supports an open discussion to explore options and to confront assumptions and biases.

This summer I am exploring ways to restructure the Shakti in the Mountains community. In particular I want to create a membership program as well as develop multi-class programs. These changes will require an in-depth look at how to balance financial solvency and accessibility. I already know that I will need to use a polarity map to help me make value-aligned decisions. I am very fortunate that there are people who are willing to help me and be thought-partners in this process.

Throughout the summer I will keep you posted about the restructuring of Shakti in the Mountains. Currently I am working on the summer schedule which will be posted by June 21. In the meantime, check out the events here and find a way to join us soon.

Wishing everyone a wonderful week!


Kim Bushore-Maki

Molly, Bethanie and Rosie

Thank you Molly, Bethanie and Rosie the dog for tending the garden last week!

Makerspace Fun!

Come to Makerspace on Fridays: we play games and do other fun things!

Sourdough Discard Class

Thank you Ellen for guiding a delicious class on cooking with sourdough discard! Can’t wait for your Jams and Jellies class on June 1!

Kim Bushore-Maki is a soul-driven entrepreneur who understands the undeniable urge to create a business and a life filled with meaning and purpose. Her vision of opening a center where people could heal and grow led her to open Shakti in the Mountains in Johnson City, Tennessee: a place where the creative, feminine energy is nurtured and valued.

Kim is a licensed professional counselor and a yoga teacher. She completed the Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapy program as well as the Shake Your Soul Yoga Dance program. Kim is very interested in somatic expressive therapy, archetypal psychology, gardening, herbalism, astrology, wisdom traditions, and regenerative economics.

Kim continues to build and to support inclusive, vibrant communities. She spends most of her time mentoring leaders, guiding healing programs, and providing mental health counseling.

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Shakti Badge Program

Shakti Badge Program

The type of fun that gives you permission to explore new ideas, to try new things, and to shift your perspective. We hope that people who participate in the program not only gain new skills but also make new friends.

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