Remember, Forget, Remember: Why I Self-Published a Poetry Book

PLUS: 2021 Oaxaca Retreat + Emotional Resilience Masterclasses

Hello Curious Human 👋

📚 Why I Self-Published a Poetry Book // Last week I published a short collection of poetry under the title of Remember, Forget, Remember. It feels good to have it out in the wild!

🌋 Reflections on 30 Days of Co-Living // Our month-long adventure in Guatemala has just ended. I plan to write more about this but for now—without exaggeration—I can say that it has been one of the most meaningful and impactful months of my life.

🌳 Emotional Resilience Retreat // I’m excited to announce a 2021 Resilience retreat that I will be co-hosting with Jan Chipchase—taking place in the highlands of Oaxaca, Mexico (more info below).

👋 Question for you // What is a question that you’re exploring in your life and work? I’d love to hear from you and what is alive in your world right now?

Stay Curious Out There.


p.s. greetings to you 37 new readers! If you know any humans who are also curious, please forward this on.

🌋 Photos from hiking up the volcano Acatenango where Kelly and I played handpan above the world.

📚 Why I Self-Published a Poetry Book

The idea of self-publishing a small collection of poems came last year, and yet I procrastinated for months… that was until attending a writing workshop with my friend Max and I realised why this really mattered to me.

Below is an extract from the book’s forward which I wrote during Max’s workshop.


Why Remember, Forget, Remember?

On some days when I attempt to write, it’s like there is a bad tune stuck in my head. The lyrics to this painfully catchy song go something like:

“You think this is any good? Worthy of another human’s time when they could read Rilke or Rumi? Could you be any more self-absorbed? Honestly a handful of twelve-line poems doesn’t make you worthy of being a poet?” 

I call this the mother-f*cking song of forgetting.

Yet, in other rare moments, often in the presence of mountains, oceans or perhaps someone that I love—I hear a quieter melody, almost like being aware of an ever-present choir singing in the distance.

This is more of an instrumental soundtrack that feels like a heartfelt smile—a sense of raw aliveness that knows these questions are based on a false premise that our existence needs to be justified. That we somehow need to earn our worthiness.

I call this the mother-f*cking song of remembrance.


Why Publish this At All?

Great question. Besides the glib answer of ‘why not?’ I view this human existence as an infinitely unfolding process of remembering, forgetting and remembering again.

I am blessed and cursed with the human tendency of often taking myself and my drama all too seriously, and in so doing, forget the breath-taking beauty of the world in which I am immersed.

My real answer—this book is for me.

I am sharing these words with the world, yet this book is for me. It comes in a bundle package with a hope and a prayer that in those inevitable moments when I am caught in my own capital R ‘Resistance’, when I’ve lost touch with the joy that doesn’t depend on what happens and when my umbilical cord to the realm of the poetic imagination is severed—in those moments I will remember this book.

This book is a gift and an infinitely unfolding invitation to my future self, saying:

”Look buddy, you’ve done this before. You ARE capable of channelling beauty and articulating the splendour of this human existence in a way that no-one else ever has. You are capable of surprising yourself mid-sentence and of overhearing yourself say something you didn’t realise that you already knew.”

If any of the poems contained within this book speak to you—or manage to mirror back a felt experience that you had previously been unable to articulate or felt alone in experiencing—then I am thrilled.

For I have been the recipient of many words that have seized me and pointed to a more beautiful way of seeing the world that I previously knew was possible.

Finally, I invite you to create your own artefact of remembrance. Like a golden thread that you can carry into the dark forest of your life, something to hold onto when you find yourself wandering down the path less path of your own creative journey.

Buy the Kindle Book

🏔️ Resilient Leadership Training

📆 2021 Virtual Masterclass Dates

I’m running another Emotional Resilience Online Masterclass (May 4-6) designed for leaders who require the perspective, scientific evidence, tools and mindset, to build resilience in themselves and their teams. If you or someone you know might be interested in attending please get in touch.

In the words of a past attendee:

“The emotional resilience class with Jonny included opportunities for deep personal reflection and was full of great nuggets that could be implemented right away, The experiential approach kept it engaging, while still covering a ton of content. Jonny didn’t just educate us about what works, he also backed it up with the research anddata on why it works.”

—Steve Messinetti President & CEO Habitat for Humanity Portland/Metro East

🌳 Developing an Organisational Resilience Toolkit, Resilience / Oaxaca

As part of the multi-year research into Emotional Resilience, Jan Chipchase and I will be co-hosting a November retreat in Oaxaca Mexico (to which you are invited), with the aim of exploring daily practices that cultivate a sense of grounding in a time of groundlessness.

We will also be collaborating with attendees to develop an organisational resilience toolkit for assessing wellbeing in organisations.

The retreat’s aims include:

  • To ensure a baseline understanding of how to achieve and maintain personal and team wellbeing for all attendees—from the science of well-being to tool and the optimal mindset.

  • To align on approaches, processes and tools for supporting resilience in our organisations. This is the thorny stuff that makes or breaks adoption.

  • To build a support network of resilience aware leaders, to share best practices and amplify resilience initiatives that you are looking to put in place.

Above // view of the Oaxaca highlands from Refugio, our 2021 retreat venue

The retreat format—sixteen interesting people hosted in a gorgeous refuge for three nights, with good food, drink and situated in nature is highly conducive to making meaningful connections, sharing and iterating on ideas.

We recognise that planning overseas travel remains challenging, so to make it easier we’ll be using a waitlist, and will make the decision whether to go-live in early August. Want to join? Sign-up to waitlist.

🔗 Et Cetera

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👊 Al’s ‘Suck Less’ challenge

🍌 How to monetise a banana

💰 NFTs!? explained for creators

⚖️ The myth of work/life balance

😷 Unexpected positives of Covid

🎙️ What exactly is a 'podcast voice'?

🛌 Communicating to lucid dreamers

📸 Stunning underwater photography

🎮 Hack your DSLR to play minecraft

🏆 Why you should stop keeping score

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💚 Finally, the meaning of every heart emoji

🍄 Concerning psychedelic patent land-grabs

✉️ Kids on how to make requests of busy people

🎵 Removing Society's soundtrack from your ears