HeartSong to My Granddaughter

The warmth of her tiny body echoes on my chest

Sleeping as only a babe will do,

Her tiny heart beating its special rhythm in concert with mine –

Oh, my precious, newborn Granddaughter, has ever love been so captivating and so real?


Your presence in this world has already touched me in subtle, profound, indescribable ways.

The melodious toning of Legacy resounds gently and purely in your Being.

All the women before me rejoice in your arrival;

All the women to come cherish your imprint in this time.


Sacred language communicates from my heartmind to yours,

Thoughts only another enraptured grandmother may understand,

Not to be mistaken by the unknowing, precious, rare and fragile between us.


You are my blood and my best.

Your beloved mother, flesh of my flesh, beat of my heart,

Sculpted by her own experience, she now finds her own beautiful way through.


You are my blood and my best,

my firstborn grandchild, sublime Granddaughter.

All the Angels of the Earth sing your name in harmonious joy.

Their song resounds to the Heavens that surround us everywhere,

all the layers of Mother Earth, all the Winds and Stars and Sky

Filling the space of my inner consciousness with your Perfection.


May God keep you and protect you.

May your every Dream come true.

May you Love as truly and deeply as your precious parents love each other and you.

May you know the abiding, immeasurable Wonder and Love I feel for you.


I love you, my precious Granddaughter.

Let nothing ever interfere with you knowing that with all your Soul.

You are the Everything of Everything in a way I didn’t know was possible.

Thank you for being you.



                                                                                                            With love,

                                                                                                            Your Mimi

                                                                                                            May 23, 2014


Managing the Holidays – with a Smile!

The holidays are upon us! Maybe that is a happy time , with lovely gatherings, meals, parties and joy. But maybe it means tension, anxiety, depression, even dread. Holidays often mean family gatherings, traditions you may or may not like, encounters with relatives you’re not interested in seeing, expensive travel, a sense of obligation to buy gifts, spend money you’d rather not, maybe even enduring events that feel atrocious.

How do you manage all of this – and still have a smile? Here are some keys you can use right away: 

One – be honest with yourself and don’t blame or shame yourself for any of your feelings. Whatever you are feeling is grounded in some experience from your history that is causing the negative or positive reaction. Many families experience friction and fragmentation as children grow into adults, older adults grow less adaptable or tolerant, or people change and grow apart. It can feel very sad to experience a transition from what you remember in your youth to what presents itself as your family in your adulthood. Be compassionate and loving with yourself. Accept your feelings as your authentic experience. Your feelings do not have to make sense to anyone but you. 

Two – Be like an investigative reporter before you commit to something. Find out who is coming to the gathering, where, when and how it is happening. Assess for your own happiness how much exposure you can handle at a time. It is perfectly all right for you to have limits for how much you can handle or want to try to. 

Three– Say Yes when you mean it, and No when you need to.  Don’t agree to stay at an event for hours if you know you will only be able to be pleasant for and hour or two – even half and hour! Make it a drop-by for a brief appearance if you know you can’t handle more. For whatever the reasons are that you will not feel happy or comfortable, you do not have to endure encounters that make you miserable. 

Fourth – Set reasonable limits for yourself on how much you do, how much you spend, how much you eat, with whom you spend time. This is your life, your time, your happiness. Only you can know what are the ingredients that will add up to a more pleasant, even happier, memorable holiday season.

Five – Make your own “family.” If you don’t have the family you wish you had to spend holidays with, seek out others who are also on their own. Plan your own holiday celebration with your favorite foods, decorations, activities, and invite others whose company you enjoy. You are absolutely not the only one who isn’t going to be with a picture perfect family for the holidays.

Six – Give of yourself to others in need. The best way out of your own troubles or sorrow is to be of service to others. Give of yourself to others. Find local churches, shelters and community organizations that feed the hungry, clothe the homeless, gift children. It is remarkable to feel how meaningful your attention and energy can be to someone who has far less. 

Seven – Practice gratitude. Find anything and everything in your life you have to be grateful for: health, friends, work, hobbies, finances, location, significant other, the Sun and the Moon, your own determination. Start your day with a list “Today I am grateful for” and find five things – no matter how big or small.  What you see becomes more of what you see. When you find things to feel grateful for, more things will come into your life for which you will feel truly grateful!




Reflections on Receiving

Giving And Receiving
How new it feels to learn to receive
After a lifetime of giving,
And in giving believe.

Being celebrated and acknowledged feels foreign indeed
And it’s sad to realize:
I don’t quite know how to receive.

It is so easy to give!
It feels so natural, so real.
It feels like my very nature to give,
Not to receive.

Is it even all right to in turn receive?
I find my head asking my heart
Is it not my part just to give,
And not look to receive?

The Wisdom teaches me I am here to both give and receive.
After all, I cannot only breathe out, I must breathe in.
This is by its very act the beginning of how to receive.
I do it all day and night long without a thought, I believe.

Yet when another tries to love me, perhaps I push it away.
It seems there is a wall I have erected to keep pain out;
When I give I am in control , but to receive I must allow myself to let you in…
That has been frightening, it seems, to the mind that has been in me.

Now I see – and I want to be courageous enough to receive.
I want to be courageous enough to believe that I can let you in
without it costing me more in grief than I can relieve.

Love waits for me, perhaps, until I am more ready to receive?

A woman recently, not knowing me well,
heard me speak very personally of wanting to welcome Love.
“It sounds like it’s all about you,” she said, “about what you want to receive.
What about what you are going to give? First you must give before you can receive.
Flip it around, think of what you can give, and then, I feel sure, you will receive.”

‘Though her words stung me, there was a truth in them to me.
Old wounds and pain hardened my heart, I see.
Perhaps I have, in this case, been very much looking to receive.
Having given so much, and been turned away three times for three,
I have been sad, angry and confused. I think I have felt it is my turn to receive.

Yet on this Mothers Day, surrounded by love from my children,
to whom it is so natural for me to give and not necessarily receive,
I noticed I felt quite awkward just to receive.
With the showers of love, affection and flowers
I actually felt out of place, unaccustomed to receive.

I make you this vow.
I wish to know You more deeply, more personally than ever before.
I wish to open my heart and let You in to the depths of my being.
I want to allow myself to be vulnerable to You.
I want to give and to receive.
So I vow to give You, Love, all I’ve got:
My heart, my soul, my love, my trust.
I vow to give, and give some more.
For, to me, to give is to Be.
I vow to be more and more myself for You.
And so I give , and give some more.
And in the giving, let me learn again to live.
To live with an open heart, so there is even more to give.

Oh, let me live again, Love.
There is so much more to give.
And in the giving so shall I learn to receive.
Breathe in, breathe out,
I must give and I must receive.
I am ready for You, Love.
I shall give. I shall receive.

©Kathryn Tull May 12, 2013

“Our task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within ourselves that We have built against it.” ~ Rumi


The Light at the End of the Tunnel


The Light at the End of the Tunnel.

When you see the light at the end of the tunnel, it is not beneficial to go out and build more tunnel.

-Neale Donald Walsh

You know that feeling. “ The light at the end of the tunnel” feeling.

Something in your life unfolded that felt daunting, so big,  it felt even insurmountable.  Even so, you kept going, you persevered, you kept pushing forward, unwilling to give up, unwilling to go backward . You may have felt at times like you weren’t moving forward. But you kept going , in some way, in any way.

Then it happened: you saw the light at the end of the tunnel.

This is a universal kind of experience.  It may even be necessary as a part of the training ground that Life provides us.  Experience unfolds and you have another opportunity to grow in personal capacity for strength, courage, resourcefulness, and willingness.

When you finally see the light at the end of the tunnel you may get really excited. You may think. “ Oh, it is possible! I can make it! I can recover! I can feel better, find a better job, find another relationship, find a healthier relationship, make more money etc.”

What often happens under the surface, though, is that you get scared. You’ve been in that tunnel. It was dark. It felt long. At some point, feeling the struggle came to feel familiar. You became accustomed to  seeing what is wrong. You were in a state of seeing the problems rather than the solution.

So when you actually see the light at the end of the tunnel, when it seems possible that things may actually work out, you unconsciously start building more tunnel. You find more problem. You find more of what’s not working so you can stay in that state. Internally, your familiar state is extremely powerful and doesn’t want to change. It tells you “ Change is SCARY.” You end up building more tunnel.

This all makes perfect sense. You may have been taught to be a tunnel builder all your life.  It certainly feels familiar to me.  That is how I heard my parents thinking. “There is not enough.” “There may not be enough.” “ That is not a good decision because…” No, you cant’ do that because …” More tunnel that always kept the dream far away was pattern. It was a constant.

What gets repeated the most is what becomes familiar. What feels familiar is what gets internally perceived as safe. What feels familiar feels safe even when, from an outside perspective, one can see that it is not good for you. If seeing problem is the repeated pattern, that becomes the familiar way of being. It becomes the habituated way of being. Without realizing it, you think in terms of problem rather than in terms of solution. That keeps building more tunnel.

Habit is only habit.  It is not law. Any thought can become a habit if repeated enough. Any behavior can become a habit if repeated enough. Any habit, no matter how detrimental to you, can come to feel familiar, and therefore safe. When building more tunnel has become your habit, that is what feels safe. That is how you internally, unconsciously, keep yourself “safe.”

A habit, any habit, has been learned. It is a learned behavior and learned behavior can be changed.

I do not believe that your behavior is “who you are.” Behavior is simply behavior. It has been learned in response to the environment and can be changed. Behavior and consciousness are not the same thing.

 Do you want to reach the end of the tunnel? Do you want to come out into the light to see what new world lies there for you? Do you want to see the fruit of your positive intention? That requires consciousness. That requires character. That is who you are.

You must allow yourself to fight against the familiar and push outside of your comfort zone. You must stretch. You must push hard against the pattern, against the familiar, stretch hard to push through the forcefield of “safety” to break free into the new.

In Star Trek they would go to Warp speed to break out of the hold of normal time and space, get out of the reach of the enemy of the zone of destruction. Figuratively, you can do the same thing. It may even feel just as difficult at first. But when you take that giant push to propel yourself through the hold of the familiar, you land in new territory and new possibility.

Love yourself on the journey. Be compassionate with yourself and applaud your efforts! Be willing and keep moving forward. There is light at the end of the tunnel and you will approach it with more ease and more grace with every effort. You can do this and you will. I believe in you. 

Kathryn Tull, M.A., MFT

Compassionate Conversation with Kathryn Tull is coming To UBN Radio!!!
Wednesday, April 10 at 11am



Love. That potent word, loaded with promise. For some, it is loaded with pain. And now it’s already February, the month our commercial society especially focuses on to celebrate Love. For some of us, love is a loaded topic. That makes February potentially a super-charged month, full of memories, associations, dreams, maybe heartbreak or disappointments.

I had a new revelation this morning about love inspired by a quote ” I came into this world to love, and I am loving.” (Ernest Holmes)
That resonates for me on the deepest level. I absolutely know this to be true: I came into this world to love and I am loving.

Love is what gets me out of bed in the morning and motivates me out into my day and do my work. Each act I undertake gives me the opportunity to be loving, whether it is taking my dog for a walk, or loving my environment by cleaning it up, or loving myself by cleaning me up or exercising, or doing my work to help others love and heal themselves and their relationships. It’s all loving.

Each client I work with gives me the opportunity to be loving and to give love through my work. I give every day in this way to those who choose and allow themselves to receive this love. My clients, my lovely office building mates, my friends, my beloved family, my pets, my community, and my spiritual community. And every time I give love and it is received, a place inside of me rejoices! A place inside of me is healed. And I cannot receive love from any other unless I recognize all the love within myself. This gives to me in immeasurable ways.

I am so grateful for this eternal flow: Love eternally fills me. It is not dependent on some other person to be created for me. Love eternally fills me. I came into this world to love, and I am loving! That is the all of it. Love eternally fills me ,is me, blesses me, flows to me and from me as I give of myself. The beautiful, perpetual, eternal filling by Love, of Love, to give Love, to be Love.

With each breath I receive life and love from Life. No matter how many heartbreaks I have had, no matter how many rejections I have experienced, each moment I get a re-start. When despair visits, I hold on tight, I ride it until it has spent its wrath, then I go on, choosing again to be Love.

It is my Choice to keep on loving! Maya Angelou reminds and strengthens me each day,”have enough courage to trust Love one more time. And always one more time.”

Today, I choose to trust Love. I choose to be Love. I choose to be loving. I choose to be this courageous. Choosing to be Love, I feel peace. I trust Love, again. And again. Breath to breath, I choose Love.


Holiday Hopes

Dear Friends,

My wish for you this holiday season is the gift of hope: that no matter what has happened in this last year for you, that the coming year will surpass your expectations for happiness, supply, abundance, joy and peace.

2011 has been a challenging year for so many. Yet many of us are witnessing and experiencing a new movement of consciousness in which more and more people are waking up to the fact that the old ways of greed, avarice, materialism at all costs, disrespect and violence are not working. For this I am deeply grateful and hopeful.

I hope this year has brought you many gifts , both internal and external. I hope you found the joy in the simple moments, relished the quiet or the noise, saw the beauty in the sun or the rain, felt the presence of hope and possibility.

Each year brings with it new and different challenges, we all know that. I’m just like you, some challenges feel like obstacles I don’t see a solution for. Yet now near the end of another year, I have to say that each seeming obstacle has been an opportunity for me to learn something new about myself, or see something again that I am still learning.

People talk with me all the time about their “mistakes.” Like a person who stayed in a relationship in which they didn’t feel respected or appreciated, long after their instinct told them to go; or another, facing large financial hurdles and feeling so very alone in it all.  I certainly have had my share of them, too, the “mistakes” I have made. Like the choice to leave the rented home I cherished several years ago because I was in the throws of an emotional storm with the owner ( a parent, no less.) Or investing in some business or personal venture that didn’t bring forth the outcome intended. Or choices I made in relationships and parenting, before I learned all that I have come to learn.

But I have to tell you, and maybe it will resonate with you, even just a little bit: as much as choices led me to really different chapters in life than I had ever anticipated, I have grown so incredibly much through each and every experience.

It is easy to look back at a choice and say, “ I wish I had done that differently.” (That’s why we all understand the saying, “ hind sight is 20/20.” )After the fact, when you see all the consequences and ramifications of what happened, it is easy to play armchair strategist and consider what you could have done differently.

But the truth is, you have absolutely no idea what would have happened if you had done anything differently. And, if you had known to do it differently at the time, you would have. You couldn’t do what you didn’t know to do.  I know I couldn’t.

Any thought I have about  “ what it would be like now” is nothing more than a fantasy I am making up about it. Because at the end of the day, I am here now, this is the way it is now, I am better, stronger, wiser, more informed, much smarter, and much more confident.

Certainly I am less innocent. Certainly I assess things differently now. That is a very positive outcome of learning , and of learning the hard way. I don’t know too many people who learn really big life lessons the easy way. Do you? And there is no question in my mind that I am better, stronger, wiser, more informed, smarter, and much more confident as a result of having not just survived but internally thrived in spite of  it all.

This is the greatest gift we can give ourselves this holiday: the gift of believing that no matter how hard it was, how much we have cried, how much things changed and that was uncomfortable, we have not just survived, we have internally thrived. Things may not look in the outside quite like we ultimately want them to yet, but we are on my way. And that is a good place to be.

Two of my favorite inspirational sources, Neale Donald Walsh and Esther & Jerry Hicks and Abraham, sent these to their folks this week.  ( By the way, Jerry Hicks made his transition to the other side of the Veil recently. Esther is handling this with exquisite grace. I know millions of us hold both of them in our hearts and prayers.)  These messages resonated so much with me that I wanted to share them with you.

..that all change is change for the better.

There is no such thing as “change for the worse.”Change is the process of Life Itself, and that process could be called by the name “evolution.” And evolution moves in only one direction: forward, and toward improvement. Therefore, when change visits your life, you can be sure things are turning for the better. It may not look that way in the very moment change arrives, but if you will wait a while and have faith in the process, you will see that this is true.

                                                                                                                Neale Donald Walsh

We are really advocates of just getting as happy as you can be—which takes care of everything. Even if you don’t have reason to be happy—make it up. Fantasize it. Make a decision that you’re going to be happy one way or another—no matter what. “No matter what, I’m going to be happy! If I have to ignore everybody; if I have to never watch television again; if I have to never pick up a newspaper again, I’m going to be happy. If I never have to see that person’s face again, I’m going to be happy. If I have to see that person’s face, I’m going to find something to see in that person’s face that makes me happy. I’m going to be happy. I’m going to be happy. I’m going to be happy.”

— Abraham  (Excerpted from the workshop of Esther and Jerry Hicks, in Sacramento, CA on Saturday, March 15th, 2003 # 292)

I want to offer you a gift from my heart to yours this holiday season: If you have not taken up my previous limited offer for the free download of   I Will Do What It Takes, my e- mini book,  please write to me within the next week at kathryn@nextboldstep.com and I will joyfully send you your free download.

I also  thought you might like to listen in to an interesting interview  I had last week with Richard Spaskoff, world known psychic medium.  https://rcpt.yousendit.com/1320204626/762bcf52c0c30b68bdaba07bf92af5cb

Or a very special conversation on CBS Radio “ The Business of Wisdom” with Dr. Alvin Jones

www.dralvinjones.com/content/01 Kathryn Tull.wma

May your days be merry and bright, even if shadows pull at your heart strings. Choose to find a ray of sunshine or something that brings you warmth and happiness to see, to focus on, to think about. Although it seems simplistic, it works. What you choose to think about will affect the direction of your emotions profoundly. I know that pain and the memories created by pain can overshadow or distort any potentially happy or positive situation. I have been there so many times myself. I tell myself whenever that tries to happen – which is still can – “ Just breathe this moment. I can choose for just this moment to think about something else, something better.” I purposely redirect my thoughts, and keep doing it, over and over again.

It works. The more you do it, the better you will get at doing it. Over time, the effect  will last a little longer, then a little longer.

Give yourself the gift of self-love this year. Let yourself see the growth you have experienced, do something good for yourself, no matter how seemingly small. A piece of chocolate, a hot bath, a walk in the brisk air, a nap. Or something bigger if you can: a whole day off, a weekend away, a vacation. Something to tangibly say to yourself, “ I love you. You matter. No matter what any one else says or thinks, you matter to me!”

And you matter to me. May your holidays be blessed and peaceful. Ring in the new year with hope and expectation for a bright tomorrow. You deserve it!

To your Next Bold Step with my love and Holiday Hopes,


Author, Speaker, Psychotherapist, Communications Coach

Real solutions for your relationships and families



Internal Combustion Part I

“Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken. “ Oscar Wilde


Have you ever felt like you are combusting inside? You know, like the pieces are breaking apart and tumbling? Or even breaking up into splinters and shards and beginning to fly around? And you can’t tell what is actually going on, other than you can tell that it all feels topsy-turvy inside?

I do. I have. And I am feeling that way right now.

In the last month, since the beginning of September, so many big things have occurred in my life that my head has been spinning. I’m surprised it’s still attached to my neck.  I’ll tell you about it all, later. Right now I just want to let you know a little of the inside story.

By the way, I really do a number on myself about admitting this.  After all, I’m a psychotherapist, and a truly good one, too. I help people sort out their problems and their issues every day. I listen to worries, doubts, fears, and pain. I listen to all the things that haven’t worked right, the broken hearts, the broken dreams, the family rejection, the personal abandonment, the lost opportunities , lost relationships, and loss of dignity.  I am the door to unburden the self-shaming, the shame imposed by others, the needs and wants and desires that feel so unmet. I listen with my mind, my heart, my soul, my talent, and my expertise. I accept unconditionally and love with my consciousness until they can begin to love themselves and see how it does all actually make sense. I’m truly good at doing what I do. And it works.

So what about when my own life feels like it doesn’t make any sense? What do I do when my own thoughts are spinning and turning so fast I can’t keep up with them?

I started using all my tools, the ones I know work so well, the ones I coach people with all the time. I took one piece at a time, and was careful not to think about everything at once, which can lead to overwhelm. I made sure to eat a little, and get as much sleep as my schedule would allow. I drank plenty of water. I caught myself not breathing thoroughly, and made sure to breathe deep, cleansing, stabilizing breaths. I put on soothing music when time would allow. I reached out to a caring friend for a little carefree chitchat, to normalize again. I reached within to my Higher Power for peace and calm and a deeper knowing.

And I did what many of us mere mortal humans do: I held on tight and tried to keep my routine going, not  willing or able ( in my perception) to take the time I needed to process all that was going on and how it felt.

Then my body took over this week and said, STOP!  I came home from work Monday evening with a stuffy nose, absolutely exhausted, and fell into bed by 10:30pm, which is early for me. I expected to get up again the next morning for a full day of clients. Hah!

My body and soul said STOP! I woke up so ill I could hardly get myself out of  the bed.  My mind started racing about all the commitments I had that day, and the next day, and the next.  My head ached so badly I couldn’t sit up. I couldn’t breathe from my nose and my chest tightened with concern for my clients. My thoughts started spinning until I finally realized that I was going to have to admit my human-ness and cancel due to illness. And all the next day, and the class I teach at the university, and all the next day, too. Horrors!

I succumbed to the truth that my body was not going to allow me to move one inch from my bed . I have texted or called all my clients  day by day.  They have each been gracious and understanding. Even my dog has gracefully been mellow, not looking  too longingly at the door for a walk, as he often does when I am home. But then the really hard part started: my thoughts. Now that I had time to actually think about some of what has been transpiring, I became aware of just how unsettled I had become by manifesting  a lot in a short period of time.

Some very old pain, fear, personal shaming and abandonment stuff has been stirred up within my personality construct, forcing me to take a look at some things I didn’t even know were there. And I am realizing that dealing with a lot of pleasure can be overwhelming, just like dealing with a lot of pain. Interestingly, both pain and pleasure are processed very close in proximity in the brain. So I guess this doesn’t surprise me; l just hadn’t thought about it that way before.

Oh – One last tool to mention: ( I had to wait til I felt better) : I made homemade chicken soup. Yes, it’s true. I make a great homemade chicken soup, too. I’ve had lots of practice, being a mother for thirty+years. For me, there really is nothing like it when you feel lousy, don’t have much appetite and need some comforting sustenance.

At any rate, that’s the skinny on why I have been off the blogging radar. Yes, the Professionals do experience setbacks – it just may not get admitted. And I recognize that I am not the best at keeping a rigorous online schedule ( because I keep a rigorous schedule working with my clients!)  So, I decided to share some of my own process with you ( which I do in the book quite a bit, too.)  If I’m not willing to do it, how can I encourage you to experience your process? What’s more, how could you know if you can trust me to understand and empathize from a place of deep knowledge?

I hope this finds you fully engaged in this process of life. Remember, it is just one breath at a time. That is how we get prepared to take the Next Bold Step. Stay tuned for more. With my love,


I invite you to pick up a personalized copy of The Next Bold Step and free bonus at http://www.nextboldstep.com.

On Facebook and Twitter too! See you there soon!