Referral Friday: Jen & Charlie’s Work Party

Referral Friday is an ongoing series inspired by John Jantsch’s Make-a-Referral Week. For more about that, and loads more referrals for everything from cobblers to coaches to gee-tar teachers, start here. Pass it on, baby!


Getting organized is hard. So is hewing to the right stuff and letting go of stuff-stuff. I know; I’m doing it, for the eleventy-billionth time.

And while I’ve read a lot of helpful books and blogs and even plain, old-fashioned articles on Actual Paper, the most effective kickstart I’ve had (outside of the crumbling of some relationship, which is always so delightfully galvanizing for me) has been the good, old-fashioned purging I did at a good, old-fashioned Work Party.

You did who in the what now?

Jen Hoffman has a little business called the Inspired Home Office, where she helps people create and maintain the spaces they need to get done what they need to. Charlie Gilkey is a self-described “systems guy” who helps people wrap their brains around what’s getting in the way (literally and from a process standpoint) of them getting their Real Work done. You can see how this might work, but really, you have to experience it. Because honestly, I had my suspicions going into it that two and a half hours on a conference call was going to be weird at best and ungodly annoying at worst.

What happened in that two and a half (!!!) hours was a gentle moving towards clear, if that makes sense. We did a little talking, explaining where we were stuck and what we hoped to get out of the experience. They did a lot of listening, and a little reframing*. And then we played little games with our stuff. Right there and then, we did brief exercises that actually helped excavate our desks and floors and what-have-you from the piles of crapola that they’d been buried in, poor dears.

Because it was gentle and slow and fun, it was not scary and hateful and resistance-provoking. It’s just a game, so you play! Only at the end of the game, you haven’t just had fun, you’ve cleared your shit out and are all fired up about commencin’ to work on their Real Purpose.

And in case you forget, that Real Purpose thing? That’s why we’re here at The Big Party, period…


Details for Jen & Charlie’s Work Party:

  • Date: Monday, October 26, 2009
  • Time: ET: 2pm-4:30pm / CT: 1pm-3:30pm / MT: 12pm-2:30pm / PT: 11pm-1:30pm
  • Available space: Limited to 12 people
  • Last day to sign up: Wednesday, October 21, 2009
  • The price: $57

Photo by Mat Honan via Flickr, used under a Creative Commons license. Pretty inspirational note on that photo at the Flickr page, worth a look!

*That’s what most good coaches and consultants are, by the way, good reframers, who get you to see things differently and in a way that helps you move yourself toward action. Freebie, on the house. I love you, too.


  1. You are a dear, Colleen. Wait a second, I’ve already told you that…

    Okay, so you’re a deary peach. Sorry, I couldn’t drop the dear.

    We appreciate the referral, and, just as importantly, we’re glad that we were able to help you get the decks clear so you can keep making the awesomesauce that you mix up offer here (and elsewhere).

    You’re always welcome to join the fun again. Just sayin.’ :p

  2. Coming to you from Washington State (aka Paradise):

    Hiya, Colleen ~ #1. I’m a *HUGE* fan of the Communicatrix blog. You’re unequivocally da bomb among the blogs I read every day! It’s like a double-shot Starbucks for me — I reverberate to your energy and constant quest to ‘sort it all out’.

    #2. I am a default Right-Brainer (Artist ….sigh) who’s made tenuous and intermittent peace with life in a Left Brained world (CFO…go figure.) Meaning I fairly easily switch from R to L, the creative R side has been my ace-in-the-hole to succeed in the L world, but the resulting cluttery mess was/is a constant battle.

    #3. I have been retired for one week (YAY me!) Meaning I am exiting the L world (mostly) to follow my bliss into the R world that I’ve so coveted for 40+ years.

    #4. Knowing what a pig-sty I am likely to create (peppered with periodic episodes of frenzied cleaning up, during which my Muse gets gagged and bound and stuffed into a box, after which She punishes me by going into a brief pouting silence) if left to my default setting, I *so* need what Jen & Charlie have to teach me.

    #5. I am unclear re the logistics — how one ‘attends’ a workshop in the ether? Is it a podcast? Or a conference call? Or a little of both? Can you e.mail me a few lines about the logistics? After which I will likely run-not-walk to their website and sign up.

    Thank you ever so much! 8- )

  3. Good to read the way you put it, I always like to get the consumer’s review of something I want to refer others to, and hearing it from someone I can ID with is all the better.
    AND your link to their Work Party page is the only one working right now (I told Charlie.)
    And yes, I had forgotten that “Real Purpose” thing — thanks for that key reminder…

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