IACP Nominated for Nobel Peace Prize 2023

November 4, 2022

The International Academy of Collaborative Professionals (IACP), has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize 2023, for international efforts to transform the way families resolve conflict.
It is the pinnacle of our local, state and national organizations for Collaborative professionals.  The announcement was made last weekend at the annual Forum where Collaborative professionals, mostly in family law, come from ...   read more

How Does Peacemaking Work?

September 17, 2020

Addressing the Fear and Finding Your Higher Self  
In every moment you can find a place of peace.  These are the steps:
        Find a peaceful place inside yourself and stay there for a while, a few moments or longer.
        Then, ask yourself what is the next best thing to do or say?
      ...   read more

Money and Divorce - Working with a Financial Neutral

February 21, 2020

What is a Financial Neutral?  A financial neutral is a member of a collaborative divorce team or a mediator who helps couples find, organize and understand their financial information and facilitates a process of educating, visioning and creating a plan for settlement.  They often have the designation “Certified Divorce Financial Analyst” (or CDFA).
What are the Benefits? 
Under ...   read more

Tuning In and Divorce

February 6, 2020

We tune out for a lot of reasons.  Boredom, stress, lack of time, anger, sadness, disappointment, fear - all make us tend to tune out.
But what we really want to do is tune in - tune in to the heart, our core, our peace and calm and courage.  We want to tune in to the frequency and resonance at the core of our being.
It’s our birthright.  We all have that calm, loving ...   read more

Grief and Divorce

January 28, 2020

No one wants to get divorced.  As with other difficult life events, there is a process of grieving.  It begins with denial, then  proceeds through stages of anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.  The sooner we can get to the stage of authentic acceptance, the sooner we can begin to heal.
Healing requires compassion for ourselves and others, ...   read more

How Does Resilience Change the Divorce Experience?

January 13, 2020

Resilience is the capacity to prepare for, recover from and adapt in the face of stress, challenge and adversity.  
These are certainly present in divorce.
Stress is present in daily life to an ever increasing extent, from technology and the speed at which we expect ourselves to perform.  Stress inhibits our brain function and affects everyone around us.  It saps our energy ...   read more

What is Preventive Law and Legal Health?

December 17, 2019

In the medical field we hear a lot about preventive medicine. Have you heard of preventive law? The term was first coined by Louis Brown in the 40’s and 50’s. The idea is that through teaching and conditioning, legal problems may be averted and health in that area maintained.
Bridges Collaborative Divorce Solutions is my practice group.  We have been working together for over 10 years.  We, ...   read more

The Energy of Money and Divorce

November 25, 2019

Many people are paralyzed by fear when contemplating a divorce. Most often the fear is about money. It’s either a fight, flight or freeze response.
But there is another possibility, and that’s empowerment. That’s the power created by two autonomous people with a shared vision for the future. I’m calling it the Third Power (1+1=3) and it’s possible to achieve in a facilitated process. ...   read more

How to Prepare for Divorce - Getting to the Heart of the Matter

September 17, 2019

Finding and Working from our Higher Selves
That’s the part of ourselves which is more relaxed and less fearful. It’s where we make our best decisions, creating outcomes that are highest and best for ourselves and the whole.  
We find that part of ourselves by getting quiet, through prayer and meditation, exercise, being in nature, doing something we love.  Even thinking about ...   read more

Why Do You Need A Prenup?

June 22, 2019

It’s wedding season and there are many preparations for the joyous day.  Have you thought about a prenup?  It’s becoming more and more relevant for reasons you probably haven’t thought of.
Here are some:
Prenups Strengthen Relationships:
A prenup is an agreement about things that will come up in the relationship that are ...   read more

What is the Power of Peace?

March 28, 2018

The Power of Peace is authentic power.  
It comes from our Higher Self.
We know our Higher Self when we are in our hearts and living in our heart qualities.  
That is a place of true power.
We assess our level of power by internal measure.
It’s an inside job.
Inauthentic power is when we come from a place of competition and comparison. 
We judge ourselves by external measures ...   read more

Skill for Peacemaking - Coaching

March 24, 2018

Dispute resolution is the path to freedom.
The road from conflict to peace.
Recovery from conflict.
The path begins with a vision, goals plus the expectation of setbacks, doubts and other obstacles.
It helps to have a coach who knows the path and can normalize the obstacles with positive encouragement ...   read more

Skill for Peacemaking - Creativity

March 23, 2018

Creativity is important for teamwork, visioning and thinking about options for settlement. Opening to both sides of the brain is a trip for many of us.
Creativity comes from listening to the wisdom of the heart and following intuition.  It can also be cultivated by accessing unfamiliar parts of the brain through movement, art and other pleasurable activities.  For ...   read more

Skill for Peacemaking - Visioning

March 22, 2018

Visioning the future, not looking back.
Focus on the vision.   See it in detail.
Feel like it’s already here.  
Reverse engineer.  What do you need to do to get there?
Visioning sets intention.
It has power, will and determination.
      Beliefs create our reality.
Believe in your vision.  
Whatever ...   read more

Skill for Peacemaking - Neutrality

March 21, 2018

Neutrality is a most helpful tool for what is ahead.
What do I mean by neutrality?
Dropping into the heart and finding neutral.  
Resting, ease, no impulse one way or the other.
When we’re in neutral, we have a choice in how we respond.  
That’s real freedom, not be ...   read more

Skills for Peacemaking - Teamwork and Trust

March 20, 2018

Teamwork and Trust 
There is teamwork between family members in resolving a divorce. There is also teamwork among the professionals helping the families.  There are recurrent themes in teamwork that are important building blocks to success.
Families have intimate histories and times of closeness and trust.  But very often there is lack ...   read more

In Peacemaking - The Skill of Advocacy

March 19, 2018

Advocacy in Peacemaking is Empowerment
Advocacy to me means helping people find what’s important to them, help them to identify and celebrate their strengths.
It means inspiring confidence and supporting a vision.
Advocacy means linking individuals and families with resources to build and use their strengths and to improve upon their weaknesses.  
It ...   read more

In Peacemaking - The Skill of Negotiation

March 18, 2018

Setting High End Goals
We start with goals for the process and for yourselves.  What matters most to you? Take some time. Do this in a quiet setting with a quiet mind if at all possible.  To come back to your heart will be an important skill for this exercise.
Why did you pick a peacemaking process?  What are your goals for the process?
What is it you want for your future ...   read more

Skills for Peacemaking - Finding and Working from our Highest Selves

March 17, 2018

For the professional and the clients it’s important to drop into the heart space and operate from heart qualities in order to have a good experience and outcome in divorce or any type of dispute resolution.
It’s from the strength of the heart that peaceful resolution is possible.
These skills need to be developed for families in distress.  You can provide ...   read more

Tools of the Peacemaker 2 - Interest Based Negotiation

March 14, 2018

Interest based negotiation is unique to the peacemaking practices.
Information Gathering - Not “Discovery”
Neutral, co-operative collection of information and documents.   General questionnaire, statements for assets and liabilities, budgets, complete information given freely and completely with voluntary disclosure.
Interests ...   read more

Tools of the Peacemaker 1- Multiple Perspectives

March 13, 2018

We know it’s important to see things from the perspective of another.  In conflict, this is a critical step.
But in divorce there are additional perspectives to consider - not only the legal but the emotional, financial and long term relationships.
Equal attention is given to all of these. The result is a matrix that will support the family in the best way possible.
T...   read more

Lawyers Are Caregivers - Who Knew?

March 12, 2018

Lawyers are caregivers.  We coach, teach, listen and guide.
Who knew?
My heart breaks and opens with the tone, the grief, the stories, the pain.
All I want to do is give hope for a better future.
To bring them together to grow apart and be autonomous again.
We shepherd through the pain to begin to rebuild lives.
They don’t teach this in ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 8- The Promise of Peacemaking

March 11, 2018

Let’s Talk About Spirit and the Law
I have been where you are.
Like you, I came to the place where I knew I had to change.
I had identified the next step as “being” rather than “doing.”
I had sought transformation and been exposed to techniques that brought me to that view.
But then I was blocked by the fear of using words to express ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 7- The Essence of the Hero’s Journey

March 10, 2018

The Mentor
The path is pointed out by a mentor, whether it’s Woody Mosten or Obi-Wan Kenobi. Following the path is encountering expected obstacles and having tools to process them.  We derail and get back on the path, always keeping our purpose in view as our North Star.
Dragon Slayers
Those obstacles are a lifetime of coping mechanisms we thought ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 6 - What is the Hero's Journey?

March 9, 2018

The Path
The path of the Hero's Journey is to find our life purpose, leave old routines and enter into new territory where challenges come to our attention.
Those challenges, like habits, behaviors and circumstances, derail us.  We meet those challenges so we can move on towards our life purpose, which is always out there in front of us.
Meeting and clearing those challenges results in new and ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 5 - Harnessing the Energy of Our Heart and Its Qualities

March 8, 2018

What Do We Do With This Connection to our Heart and Heart Qualities?
My mentor, Woody Mosten, says we harness the energies of our core purpose and our strengths and decide how we are going to serve.
Then we express it.  He calls this creating our Peacemaking Signature.
Peacemaking Signature
A Peacemaking Signature is everything about how we want to be in the world.
The work we do, how we do ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 4 - Heart Qualities

March 6, 2018

When we go to our hearts we are reminded of who we are.
We are the qualities we find in our hearts.  We experience them when we quiet our minds and are present with what is.
We all know what it feels like when we have that moment of open space.  
The practices to get there are simple.
They ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 3 - Energy, Focus, Purpose and Inspiration from Heart Connection

March 5, 2018

Answering the call to the heart and continually returning to it creates an energy that feels like it comes from an infinite source.
It still feeds me. It gives me drive and purpose.  It produces unstoppable inspiration to find ways to bring people to peace and promote peacemaking.
Inspiration is so important for ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker -Part 2 - A Mantra From My Heart

March 3, 2018

My Hero’s Journey began with a question.
That question was "What is your core value"?
It went straight to the core of my being and answered “Peacemaker”.
 In that moment I knew myself for the first time.  It confirmed what I had expected.    
It was a calling.  My heart was calling.  ...   read more

Lawyer to Peacemaker Part 1 - A Hero's Journey To The Heart

February 25, 2018

Many lawyers in the world are making a difference for peace. They took the Hero's Journey.  
The Hero’s Journey begins with an idea, a need, a yearning and following that like a beam of light.
 It takes you to your heart.
 It’s a calling.
 You answer.
 You go to it.
It feels good.
 Comfortab...   read more

What Does It Mean To Be A Peacemaker?

June 5, 2017

My heart tells me I’m a Peacemaker. It’s a calling. I am part of a group of Peacemaking Practice Trainers. But what does it mean to be a Peacemaker? This is how I see it.
Peacemaking is processing differences in a way that results in continual resolution. It’s not the absence of conflict. It’s an appreciation of conflict as an opportunity to rise to a higher level of function and satisfaction.
Conflict ...   read more

Collaborative Process Described By Its' Founder

September 3, 2015

This is a beautiful explanation of collaborative process by the founder of the movement, Stu Webb, a humble and beautiful lawyer who with another willing colleague experimented with settling divorce using attorneys and without going to court. That was 25 years ago. It is now an established practice that protects families in transition and gives them hope. I am so thankful to be part if this movement and for the teachers, ...   read more

Peacemaking, Part 3

June 5, 2015

How Can Peacemaking Be Applied to Other Family Matters:
Marital Mediation (Mediation to Stay Married)
Marriage requires constant peacemaking - that is, “processing differences in a way that results in continual resolution.” Some of my favorite books are by Willard Harley on Marriage Builders and another by Larry Stallman entitled The Marital Arts.  Both describe a very essential ...   read more

Peacemaking, Part 2

June 4, 2015

How Does Divorce Become Peacemaking?
Interest based negotiation
Divorce can become peacemaking by choosing the right process. Mediation and collaborative practices use a method of negotiation called “interest based” problem solving. It is very different from the traditional concept of negotiation which more often involves puffing, threatening and bullying.
      ...   read more

What is Peacemaking? Part 1

June 3, 2015

What is Peacemaking?
Peacemaking is processing differences in a way that results in continual resolution.
It’s not the absence of conflict.
It’s an appreciation of conflict as an opportunity to rise to a higher level of function and satisfaction. 
Conflict arises naturally within ourselves and in relationship to others.
It’s ...   read more

Closing Ceremony for Divorce?

April 7, 2015

            We are taught in collaborative divorce to offer clients a closing ceremony. Most of us are uncomfortable with that.
“Clients don’t want it.”
“Too touchy-feely. Not everyone wants some kind of kumbaya.”
“Uncomfortable, personal and painful.”
“These particular clients aren’t ready for it ...   read more

Can A Lawyer Be A Peacemaker?

March 10, 2015

Below are quotes from mentors who inspire me every day about what it means to be a Peacemaker.
“A peacemaker is ‘one who makes peace, especially by reconciling parties in conflict.’ Reconciliation is defined as restoring or creating harmony in the family.
Peacemaking is not a process but a set of values, personal attributes, goals and behaviors that guide our work.  Peacemakers ...   read more


February 17, 2015

Negotiation requires listening to different perspectives that often conflict with how we see ourselves and our world.  This is feedback.  It’s hard to give and hard to take.
It's hard because of our insecurities.
It's necessary in order to make positive changes in how we behave and to be able to grow.
What can we do to overcome the pain of feedback?  ...   read more

An Amicable Divorce?

January 14, 2015

An "amicable" divorce is not an easy path.  It requires each person to be self-interested, but not self-centered.  Self interest and mutuality are related.  Neither party can maximize interests unless the needs of both are met.  A maximized outcome requires cooperation, coordination and collaboration.
It helps to know what your goals are.
Would it be a goal of yours to –
Resolve ...   read more

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