Hi, I’m Pat McHenry Sullivan, owner of Visionary Resources: practical tools for seeing and achieving what matters. I’m here to pass on tips and resources about creativity, spirit, practical planning, work and money you can use right now. Hopefully, I’ll always do it in the spirit of my mother’s daily chats over coffee and cake with her best friend: lots of laughter, sometimes tears, no shyness about saying “Try this!” without pushing.
I’d love to help you:
- focus a brilliant vision for your work and life;
- create inspired strategy for your vision;
- fill all your work with integrity, purpose, and joy;
- obtain funding for a business or nonprofit venture;
- have plenty of time and energy to enjoy life.
Hopefully you’ll share my passion for creating a world that matters in a way that matters, as defined by you.
Everything here builds on what I’ve learned in my mother’s sewing and design room; my dad’s shop and his classes on blueprinting and industrial arts; and my parents’ basic teachings: Creativity is a gift from God and a call from God. Use it for fun, for justice-making, for helping solve problems. If you want to know what God is like, get out in the world, open up your eyes, and let it teach you. Love nature, learn from it, and let it be.
I’ve been blessed with amazing teachers, particularly Albert Schweitzer and people who worked with him, who inspired the concept of everyday visioning. I’ve been blessed to be in the thick of many transformative movements in my 68 years: civil rights, women’s rights, human potential, ecumenical spirituality, holistic health, environment, spirituality and work, and conscious capitalism.
My best training has come from life itself.
When I face challenges creatively or simply open to inspiration from many sources, life opens a myriad of treasures. Much of my empathy for people who are lost vocationally comes from years of being lost after my mother died in 1956, when I was only 13.
During a class with cosmologist Brian Swimme as part of a graduate program through the Institute of Culture and Creation Spirituality at Holy Names University, I discovered the call to study how and why many people like me are overwhelmed with visionary possibilities, while others are bereft of them, and how we either block or distort visions as opposed to build them with integrity. That became the focus of my master’s project under the guidance of Matthew Fox.
None of my original visions about how I would build a business around my visionary calling manifested.
Instead, my husband and I went through some very hard years when he was out of work, and his father, brother-in-law (the heart of the family) and my beloved stepmother were all dying on the opposite side of the country. Our cat came down with fatal kidney illness.
To pay the bills and the cost of numerous cross-country flights, I took a full-time legal secretarial job, which required me to stay very focused and do a lot of overtime in a period when the firm went through 3 downsizings. The only way I could get through this period was to bring my spirit and creativity to a job I initially hated.
Years of pain at work lead to a new career in spirituality and work
In about 1995, John got a job as research director on the first major directory of resources for spirituality and work. Immediately I recognized, “Home!” and was connected to leaders in the field, particularly Judi Neal. That led to a new work in the field of spirit and work with some focus on spirituality and law — including teaching stress release and spiritual practices to lawyers. And because it took me many years to learn how to market and sell my work, I’m now helping others market and sell what matters in a way that matters.
Over the years I’ve conducted hundreds of interviews about meaningful work and money relationships, starting with columns in the San Francisco Chronicle‘s career section for several years. That led to the book Work with Meaning, Work with Joy (Sheed & Ward), plus an interview with World religions scholar Huston Smith on the wisdom of all faiths for work, plus articles in the Law Practice Management Newsletter, Workforce Management magazine, and other professional or business journals about spirit and work. I’m even featured in the American Bar Association’s best-selling book, Lawyers as Peacemakers, by J. Kim Wright!
Several years ago John and I co-founded the Spirit and Work Resource Center, because we were overloaded with great information we wanted to share. At one of our meetings in late 2008, we meditated on a dollar bill, which launched a whirlwind of new insights about money, including the early post in my blog, spiritworkandmoney.com, Dollar Bill Wisdom. More and more, the two of us are working together on spirituality and work, bringing in more of his wisdom from his earlier years as a priest in the Discalced Carmelite monastic order.
My current theme songs come from the 60′s: “The Times They Are a-Changing” and “I’ve Got a Lotta Livin’ To Do.”
These songs have much richer meaning now that I’m in my 60′s and growing older. Fortunately, I’m of a generation where many of us are just getting warmed at ages that once would have relegated us to our rocking chairs.
Please enjoy here connections to the growing body of wisdom about visionary development, spirituality and work, conscious capitalism, and other wonderful things that typically get short shrift in the mainstream media. Especially enjoy the many stories of role models. And as Mama and her best friend did, be sure to add your own tips and inspiration!
Many blessings, Pat McHenry Sullivan