Employed By The Universe

Wolf Creek, Grass Valley, CA, Photo by Jane Sheppard



  • Open heart willing to give and receive love without restraint
  • Abundant and available compassion for self and other living beings
  • Willing to fall on one’s face and fail in order to learn and grow
  • Ever present sense of humor with a tendency to laugh frequently with others and at ones self
  • Takes breaks often to experience pleasure and deepening of relationships
  • Intimately connected with the natural world and is guided by the wild within and without
  • Sees through the lens of possibility, trusting the unfolding of life
  • Considered an “artist of life” and a “creator of connection”
  • Uses all senses to the fullest every single day
  • Walks in the rain and steps in puddles
  • Is spontaneous and sometimes seen breaking out in dance steps in public
  • Easily engages with small children and is willing to enter their magical perception of life
  • Dwells in awe and wonder often, in and out of the presence of children
  • Is kind to animals, people, nature and even inanimate objects
  • Actively and frequently practices random acts of kindness
  • Is easily able to dwell in silence and reflection without distraction
  • Actively engages in life with curiosity and courage
  • Loves to grow things and delights in their presence, nurturing their specific needs and desires
  • Has a working knowledge of organic and regenerative farming practices
  • Has the ability to play with abandon and delight
  • Is passionate about learning and trying on new ways of being in the world
  • Does not judge or make assumptions, but does take time to explore the depth/breadth of any given situation or living being
  • Dazzled by color, light, textures, shapes, forms and the beauty found everywhere
  • Honors and respects all elements – earth, water, fire, air and ether – as part of the whole
  • Willingness to experience all emotions and deepen emotional intelligence
  • Is transparent with ones self and others as much as possible in any given moment
  • Willingness to try on new ventures, skills and pathways
  • Does not postpone joy
  • Finds beauty and potential everywhere
  • Accepts death and the natural transitions of an embodied lifetime
  • Isn’t afraid to make noises and sounds in “inappropriate” times and places
  • Celebrates embodied life with gratitude every single day
  • Ability to listen mindfully and be a witness to others pains, struggles and concerns with empathic awareness and compassion
  • Acceptance of the mystery of life and ability to comfortably dwell in not knowing
  • Sees every fear, challenge and failure as an opportunity for collaboration and connection
  • Refuses to “behave appropriately” from time to time
  • Believes in magic and synchronicity
  • Connects and sustains relationship with nature as part of ones self, never separate
  • Lives simply from “enough”
  • Is familiar and comfortable with a “gift economy”
  • Wears funny hats and clothes from time to time
  • Must have knowledge and awareness of earths operating system and possess “Universal band width”
  • Embraces the stars, planets and galaxies as living systems
  • Willingness to live life with free form improvisation
  • Perceives all life as sacred….and interconnected


There are many of us, like myself, who choose to continue working in some capacity for regenerative economic flow and to contribute their unique artistry, abilities and wisdom. As I have been exploring what conscious livelihood is for me at this stage of life the above came through “from the Universe”.

Most of these “qualifications” came through as foundations for the shift humans are making at this time in order to support thriving for all living beings, as well as our living breathing planet earth and beyond.

It is my deepest desire to partner with others who see all life as sacred and are collaborating, innovating and creating on behalf of well being and sustainability for all. Feel free to connect with me. I am available for Universal Livelihood!

The above was re=posted from the Wildly Free Elder website: If you don’t want to miss future Wildly Free Elder posts simply sign up for the blog here:


You can find ALL of the 31-Days of Joy & Laughter Project posts in the archives here: http://wildlyfreeelder.com/2021/12/

Gaye Abbott, Natural Passages Consulting, 1/9/22. Please feel free to share this post and link to WildlyFreeElder

Considering a move? Finding Home: Conscious Relocation Services by Gaye Abbott

Love Much, Think Less

Re-posted from Wildly Free Elder, 8/14/21

“The important thing is not to think much, but to love much; and so do that which best stirs you to love.”

St Teresa of Avila

For the past 4 months I have been loving Saturday mornings for the local Farmers Market taking place in my new home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of N. Carolina. Today I was moved by a woman standing next to me at my favorite organic farm stall at the University of N. Carolina tailgate market. She had a bunch of sunflowers in her hand and several bunches of dahlias in her carry basket. I exclaimed “those flowers always make me smile!”

Her response back also made me smile as she said “Life is too precious not to have flowers in it . I consider it my therapy and have fresh flowers in my house all the time.” I loved her spontaneous response to me, a stranger whom she shared her love of beauty with. Our connection was one of sharing our love for not only flowers and the sensual pleasure they bring, but also to enjoy the moment of contact and to open that energetic space of love.

Imagining the unseen energies – presence – that surround each flower bringing it from seed to germination to leaf to bloom. Rather like our lives.

At times we are faced with challenges where the energies of love and gratitude seem a million miles away. Thinking takes over contracting us within a cage of our own creation. Yet, I am aware more and more that love is always right here surrounding every living being and every conscious action – even the act of breathing in and out which is intricately interwoven with all life.

What if we saw within each and every challenge, or simply each moment of everyday life, an opportunity to release contracted thinking energy and be present to take actions that “best stir us to love”.

Since relocating across country away from friends, family, sons and grandkids there have been multiple opportunities to shift challenges and release contracted thinking. One of the most powerful ones wiithin the first 4 months being here happened when I “failed” the vision test to obtain a N. Carolina drivers license.

Having scheduled my appointment right before my California drivers license expired on my birthday my thinking mind made it not only mandatory to obtain my new license, but actually had me paralyzed with fear that I might lose my freedom of independence if not able to obtain a drivers license.

I was immersed in this “worry cage” for a few days, but at the same time took conscious actions to shift this thinking that had taken such a strangle hold upon me. First of all putting everything into perspective, knowing that this was not about survival or control but about releasing into “loving much”.

Within 4 days I had an appointment with an ophthalmologist, was corrected to 20/20 vision and heard my cataracts were not at all ready for surgery; obtained corrective glasses the same day from a wonderful caring optician team of people a short distance away; rescheduled my DMV appointment for N. Carolina drivers license for 3 weeks away; learned that having an expired drivers license is not the big deal I thought it was; studied for the written test which I was certain I was going to have to take; drove to a small little town one and a half hours away for the completion of the DMV process; was in and out in 15 minutes without having to take the written test (better N. Carolina driver because of the intense study!) and walked away with license, new ID card and was registered to vote.

All of this to say that for most of us we always have choice as to how we meet each moment of our lives whether in patterns of assumptions/contracted thinking/fear or with the openness of possibility, living in the spaciousness of love and gratitude.

Like an artist trusting the creative energy that emerges from within we dip our brush in the colors of life and do that which best stirs us to love.

Elemental Musings” offers postings by a nature lover and elder in transition in the Blue Ridge Mountain area of North Western N. Carolina, in addition to postings by the Wildly Free Elder community.

Post by Gaye Abbott, 8/14/21, Natural Passages Consulting.

We ask that you reference Wildly Free Elder if you wish to pass this on…and thank you for doing so!

Finding “Home”

French Broad River at Stackhouse Bend, N. Carolina

“I would love to live like a river flows, carried by the surprise of its own unfolding.”

~ John O’Donohue

Have you ever found yourself wondering what “home” means to you personally? The mystics say it resides inside and I agree with this. Yet, there is much more to this journey to reflect upon, let go into and be present to. Perhaps this is a quest we are on our entire lives.

I love the term “wild divinity” in the excerpt below – “resting in the house of our own heart”. As we age this somehow becomes easier to do as the striving and outward focused actions fall away and the inner “home guidance system” takes precedence.

Each one of us is alone in the world. It takes great courage to meet the full force of your aloneness. Most of the activity in society is subconsciously designed to quell the voice crying in the wilderness within you.

The mystic Thomas a Kempis said that when you go out into the world, you return having lost some of yourself. Until you learn to inhabit your aloneness, the lonely distraction and noise of society will seduce you into false belonging, with which you will only become empty and weary.

When you face your aloneness, something begins to happen. Gradually, the sense of bleakness changes into a sense of true belonging. This is a slow and open-ended transition but it is utterly vital in order to come into rhythm with your own individuality.

In a sense this is the endless task of finding your true home within your life. It is not narcissistic, for as soon as you rest in the house of your own heart, doors and windows begin to open outwards to the world. No longer on the run from your aloneness, your connections with others become real and creative. You no longer need to covertly scrape affirmation from others or from projects outside yourself.

This is slow work; it takes years to bring your mind home.

John O’Donohue, Irish poet and philosopher


Your vision is your home and your home should have many mansions to shelter your wild divinity.”

~John O’Donohue

Crossing the threshold into this wild divinity of our own heart brings a “belonging” that never goes away. This is foundation – the bricks, mortar and rooted earth – that brings with it the freedom to surrender into the next relationship, artistry, move, endeavor, location….life moment.

Having just completed a 7th relocation two weeks ago to Asheville, N. Carolina area I am forced to re-calibrate and go deeper into unknown territory, using challenges as stepping stones for this next chapter of life, while at the same time trusting inner guidance even as ever present uncertainty attempts to take an upper hand. The ever constant details of it all – the “right” and “wrong” – threaten to take away inner knowing and trust and often serve as immense distractions.

On the outside it may look like I have been searching for a home and never quite getting there. This last time leaping from wildfires, air pollution, rolling blackouts and high daily living expense in California to a more elemental earth and water home sanctuary aligns with the “home” inside. Yet the loss of being close in distance to sons, grandchildren and friends is part of the letting go journey as well.

I find the wild beauty and grounding of the natural world always there, serving as guidance whispered into heart and soul as a reminder of building inner resilience, acceptance and trust. When “home” resides in the wild divinity of the heart each place you find yourself – whether staying in a community where you were born and have established community or exploring other cultures and landscapes – will serve as an awakening to life……

Great Smoky Mountains, N. Carolina

Conscious Embodied Relocation: I was not consciously aware of the principles involved in this type of embodied leave taking when I took that first leap over 30 years ago now, but over the last three decades the fine tuning became more apparent.

If you are thinking of finding a “home landscape” that supports your aliveness during this transformational elder time of life here are some keys for doing these leaps that I found integral to trusting the unfolding possibilities:

  • Explicitly trusting the unfolding of life – get out of your own way
  • Taking effective action on the possibilities that show up from that depth of surrender
  • Willingness to reinvent yourself (which is actually a great deal of creative fun!)
  • A sense of adventure (being willing to get out of your “comfort zones”)
  • Listening deeply to intuition and Source messages
  • Connecting transparently with others along the way.
  • Willingness to change your inner & outer conversations

Conscious Embodied Relocation

It’s not realistic to expect to always be thriving.  Life can be messy and we can’t separate the highs and lows or have one without the other.  But we can learn to accept the process, to understand that it’s part of the journey, and to build our own inner resilience.  It’s about  bouncing forward and using adversity as a catalyst to get better and become stronger.  

And we also need to remember that we are part of a community – that when we are vulnerable, we can lean on each other and lift each other up.  And together, we are so much more resilient than we know. ” ~ Green Renaissance 

“This work is not for yourselves – kill that spirit of ‘self’. If you can rise, bring someone with you” – Charlotte Maxeke.  

Filmed in Cape Town, South Africa.  

Featuring Mpumelelo Ncwadi.

Copyright by Gaye Abbott, Natural Passages Consulting, 4/2021 and Re-Posted from WildlyFreeElder

Become a Spotlight in our global community and join us for the NEXT WILDLY FREE ELDER GLOBAL ZOOM CALL: May 7, 2021 – Focus: “WILD WRITING” with Laurie Wagner
If you are interested in joining this 90 minute call please contact us from this link: https://wildlyfreeelder.com/conscious-aging-conversations/



“If grief can be a doorway to love, then let us all weep for the world we are breaking apart so we can love it back to wholeness again”

~Robin Wall Kimmerer

First of all let me apologize to any Dorothy’s out there for targeting you.  You were not meant to be singled out!

One of my very favorite movies of all time is The Wizard of Oz.  For whatever reason whenever I hear the word “surrender” I see the Wicked Witch of the West riding her broom in the sky with the words “Surrender Dorothy” miraculously spelled out of the cloud formations.

Little did this very naughty witch realize that “surrender” allows and precipitates all kinds of possibilities to come into our lives, as opportunities and allies that would never have emerged if we did not simply let go and find the hidden power in our own vulnerability.

These days the global pandemic affecting millions of people and economies, as well as planetary shifts, essentially demands that we surrender and acknowledge there is, at the deepest level, no control or certainty. For most this is a vulnerable place where our deepest primal fear of death resides.

We all have woven a tapestry of identity that is familiar, and for the most part comfortable for us.  During challenging times part of the tapestry comes apart and normally we simply “repair” it and go on with our lives.

However, at this time you may have felt that someone pulled hard on one of the threads of your tapestry identity and it all came undone at once.

Perhaps we could call this time on our planet “The Great Unraveling”.

Dorothy in the Oz story ended up being empowered by surrendering to her own innate wisdom, intuition, resiliency and power, and that of her loyal companions.  But it didn’t come without great disorientation and fear.

After all her entire identity and home space shifted all at once! She was forced to see her life from a different perspective and to join with other companions whom she grew to trust.

I see this happening now with so many doing acts of kindness, compassion and donating time and skills to others in need and to our planets health.  A global community becoming more consciously connected and innovative.

The power to transform is embedded in challenges such as we are currently experiencing. Even within the ordinary daily ups and downs on the roller coaster of “normal” life.  Where something seems to be taken away there is always a new possibility or opportunity for change that emerges  in right timing.

Opportunities to surrender and let go seem to be so numerous these days it is easy to be overwhelmed.  We are so intimately connected that a lot of what you may be experiencing is the global fear, grief and at times panic that is affecting us all at some time or another.

In other words, others emotions and energy.  It is important to know this and release what is not yours, as well as face your own simply by acknowledging and then letting go, instead of “something to be worked on”.   Allow this opening and release to transform your inner world and perspective.

Re-weave your tapestry to reflect your innate sense of  belonging and the embodied artistry you are here to express.

Three weeks ago within a 2-day period I experienced a lay off from my job, a necessary move during sheltering at home, and a dear friend hearing her cancer had progressed.

In those moments I realized clearly that I had choice.  Just a breath away was the potential for an active surrender – a dissolution of patterned boundaries and an emptying out.

This conscious decision, amidst all the inner voices directing to mobilize and attempt some control of the situations, allowed the unfolding of circumstances that could not have been planned for, or even seen the possibility of, if staying contracted in fear, doubt, worry, anxiety and re-action.

How does it feel to surrender control and certainty…..and trust the unfolding?

Spaciousness, freedom and release where alternate possibilities emerge with a shift in perspective….

and strength, knowing and resiliency reside.

A return to trusting the unfolding of life.

I now live on 20 wooded acres near to the South Yuba River in Nevada City, California, have been accepted for unemployment benefits, and my friend has heard more hopeful news since the day we talked about having a more intimate relationship with dying,

Yes, these are challenging times. Yes, they take all of who we are, and are becoming, to meet and navigate.  Yet our world is ripe for a consciousness shift on so many levels and in so many domains.  All within cooperative connection with others, and communing with the natural world through our senses.

With surrender comes opportunity partnered with vulnerability.  This has the potential to transparently unlock possibilities for change and increased well being.

With letting go comes a new found strength and resiliency that has been there all along.

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry


Are you ready to surrender?

Free Audio Surrender Guidance:  It is advised that you find a very comfortable space and position to listen to this guidance on surrender.  Either lying down with support for head/neck and low back or sitting in a comfortable reclining chair that feels safe and puts you at ease, or a sacred space in nature. If you have an eye mask or a soft piece of cloth you can place over your eyes to relax them and block out distraction, then do so.   Give yourself this gift of time devoted on behalf of your own well being, and that of others whose life you touch.


Copyright by Gaye Abbott, Natural Passages Consulting, 4/22/20


fudFU5HITISbHxdruQsnEg copyGAYE ABBOTT lives and thrives in Northern California in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains where she communes with hummingbirds, flowers, plants and wild things.  Communing with nature is her favored activity along with ecstatic dance, Wisdom Healing Qigong at sunrise and sunset, volunteering in her community, laughing out loud and enjoying her family and friends with great appreciation and gratitude!

She is available for guidance/energy sessions via phone, Zoom or Skype.  Contact via the “Contact” tab on this site. Two hands at my heart…..


Nature Does Not Hurry


“Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” Lao Tzu

Is there ever a reason for hurrying through our life moments? Only to get to the end of our embodied time here having forgotten we are the artist immersed in our own creation.

In a recent painting class the teacher taught us to step away from the canvas, walk around the room for a bit, then come back and see with a new perspective.

The everyday pace of nature unfolds slowly and with purpose, though sometimes it seems to humans there are sudden storms, hurricanes, earthquakes,, fires, trees dying or species disappearing.

What we don’t perceive is the conditions for these changes have been slowly building and changing hidden from us as we focused our awareness away from natural cycles and rhythms.

Aging brings us the wisdom of slowing down, sometimes because our physicality demands it  – but more often we notice the vast richness, depth and beauty of life is missed when our minds are caught in the web of a goal.

Natural unfolding – and the trust of it – reveals far more than goal orientation and hurry.

When a woman is in the first stages of giving birth, or a flower is still in bud, the natural unyielding laws of nature prevail.

Any attempt at hurrying those natural processes can destroy a life, or lives, waiting at the threshold to emerge.

If we merged with nature, as many indigenous humans have, and accepted her rhythms – instead of attempting to control, change or dominate – the natural cycles would carry us into the womb of life unfolding and the mystery and wisdom we seek.

Gaining trust never involves hurry.  Relationships take time to evolve and unfold.  They take attending to like an infant newly born or a tree just planted.

At some point as we rush through our life experiences focused on what is next we are faced with our own mortality.

Rushing something sooner than it is ready to be birthed means not listening to, or aware of, the innate impulses giving birth.  Instead we exert our will and accept meeting others perceived expectations or our own – loosing ourselves and the precious moments of our life.

Life artistry never hurries.  It always waits in the spaciousness of the moment….

before making it’s presence known.  Be surprised!

Gaye Abbott, 7/14/19