Hello! I love the quote by Irish poet and mystic John O'Donoghue, 'when you beautify your mind, you beautify your world'. We each have a desire to live beautiful lives and what this looks like is different from person to person. A passion for me is supporting women to access what is beautiful for them, a talent or curiousity and the courage to explore it and be their truest and most authentic selves. When we are being ourselves we are our most powerful and as a result we attract new opportunities and people into our lives. Of course, this is a continuous process and as our life circumstances change so to will the challenges we face. So, I decided to design a programme that would bring small groups of women together to support each other, wherever they are on their life journey, and develop empowering friendships and community.
The Inspiring Women Programme was designed by reflecting on my own journey and unwrapping the philosophies, tools, and processes that have helped me to become more authentic, creative and empowered. I don't claim to have all the answers, this is very much a work in progress and like you, I have spent many years on a path leading me back into my own heart. A path that is oftened referred to as 'the heroine's journey' because it is so challenging and it takes huge courage to travel along it. Inevitably the path is strewn with obstacles, surprises, U-turns and dead ends, but it is never dull!
As well as teaching and designing women's empowerment programmes I am a research fellow in the Institute for International Conflict Resolution & Reconstruction in DCU. My own story has included a corporate career in London, an MA in International Relations, a PhD on gender and international peacekeeping, volunteering in Kathmandu and Calais, co-ordinating a north-south feminist peace project, facilitating consultations for the National Women's Council to inform national policy on women's peace and security, writing and directing plays on women's rights issues, and lecturing in UCD. So, it's been full of detours and surprises!
Typically, we do not always give ourselves credit for our achievements and the contributions we have already made. The Inspiring Women Programme encourages you to acknowledge and fully own your talents, speak out about the issues you feel strongly about, and create a powerful vision for your future. This is important to build confidence and create a strong foundation from which you can flourish. This programme is for you if you are ready to shake things up in your life and take on new challenges and opportunities. Whether you are interested in science/technology, health/wellbeing, the arts, politics, business or social & cultural issues, you are ready to make a difference not only in your own life but also in the lives of others.
Previous participants in the Inspiring Women Programme have created huge changes in their lives including launching new businesses, going back to university, changing career direction, recording their music and launching a CD, re-igniting their artistic talents, and pursuing opportunities to have a higher-profile in areas of expertise by putting themselves forward to speak at conferences, on radio and TV.
Because of these huge leaps forward women make, the programme is an absolute joy to facilitate. To be notified of dates as soon as they become available join my mailing list by emailing me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Inspiring Woman - Niamh Cahill
"I attended Shirley's course last year and it was honestly one of the best things I've done for so many reasons. Shirley's presence and guidance is second to none. Shirley creates such a safe and welcoming atmosphere for the course which allows for such progression and growth throughout. Meeting up with like-minded women once a month quickly became my favourite part of the month. It's fantastic to be around people who want to discuss, explore and live courageously.
I personally believe we don't get enough time to reflect and nourish ourselves daily and Shirley's course is the perfect remedy for that. The course really is a gift to yourself!!
Since doing the course, I've seen my life progress and move forward in ways I couldn't imagine before and I'm so thankful to Shirley and all the girls on the course.
If you have the chance to do the course, please do!! Utterly fantastic!!" - Niamh Cahill