"All your retreats have been wonderful and this [year's] was even better!"
MT, California, USA, 2023
"I enrolled in the Compassionate Spiritual Ecology course because those three words in combination held incredible promise and potency. As the world is holding nearly unbearable collective grief; searching for meaning, purpose, and (re)membering - and my own life is experiencing a significant transition - the course wildly exceeded my expectations. The content was robust, and the community of like-hearted souls was warm and compelling. Most importantly, the practices we engaged in were awe-inspiring and quite frankly life-changing. Best of all, was the guidance of Dr. Jennifer Wilhoit. Her facilitation was artful – with just the right mix of meeting everyone where they were and nudging us to expand and deepen a bit… and then just a bit more. Above all else, every aspect of her style was wrapped in generous and gentle compassion. If ever there was a time I saw the abiding face of humanity, it was in Dr. Wilhoit. A gift!"
AV, Iowa, USA, 2023
"I am so glad I chose to participate [in Compassionate Spiritual Ecology]. I am enjoying it immensely. I appreciate the resources and ideas you have added to my world. I learned more about how to run an online course that makes it feel like the teacher is really engaged with each person. And I realized how much of a commitment on your part was required to do it well."
MH, Oregon, USA, 2023
“We [at the Charter for Compassion's Education Institute] would love to have you teach Compassionate Spiritual Ecology (CSE) again. Your course has been such a moving experience for many, so rich in content, and you are spectacular at engaging people on the forums - a model for our (other) instructors. Also, as one of your students, I have deepened my ‘nature’ practices as a result of this course.”
ES (Curriculum Coordinator at CEI, and a student of the course), Israel, 2022
"This [Compassionate Spiritual Ecology course] was a transformative experience for me, and I am most grateful."
AB, North Carolina, USA, 2022
"Thank you for offering the Compassionate Spirituality Ecology course. I loved this course so much. I look forward to hearing more about [your upcoming] Spiritual Ecology Facilitator Training."
BG, Wisconsin USA, 2022
“My sessions with Jennifer have been pleasurable. I realized through her coaching how to add more detail [to my writing]. She encouraged me. Jennifer also helped me to see the bigger picture for my memoir. Thank you for your guidance, Jennifer.”
RD, California USA, 2022, Writing Mentorship
“When I met Jennifer, I had been working on a memoir for over a decade. I had many, many pages, but I didn’t know where I was going. She said to me, ‘There’s a lot of weft here, but not enough warp!’ She gave me a structure to work with, and by way of a vision quest I undertook that summer I came up with my theme. Then we began working. I can’t believe it has been three years! I have a finished first draft that I am happy with and am ready to fine-tune. The sessions with Jennifer have always been pleasurable; she engaged with me as a whole person, not just as a writer. I am actually sad not to be working with her anymore, but endlessly grateful for the superb guidance she has given me. Thank you, Jennifer!”
PH, New York USA, 2021, Writing Mentorship
“When I started working with Jennifer, it was a very dark time for me personally. I had been working on a book for over ten years, and I felt completely stuck as a result of challenges in my work life. In our weekly sessions, Jennifer gently but persistently encouraged me, reminded me of the value of the material, and kept me engaged. I learned to let go of some imagined outcome and to focus on incremental progress. Jennifer helped me to celebrate each small step forward. The journey has now landed my manuscript in the hands of my first-choice publisher. For this long labor, I could not have had a better midwife than Jennifer.”
JP, California USA, 2021, Writing Mentorship
“I closed my computer at 2 AM [one night] in November. I said, ‘It is done now.’ I could not have gotten to that conclusion without the help, insight, knowledge, and kindness of Jennifer Wilhoit. After numerous attempts to write my story, I can honestly state that without Jennifer's encouragement and consistency it would never have happened. Thank you, Jennifer.”
FK, Washington USA, 2021, Writing Mentorship
“I was at the lowest point in my life after experiencing a devastating emotional event when I met Jennifer. I had decided to write about what I was going through emotionally to help me make sense of my shattered life. Thankfully, I was introduced to Jennifer to assist with this undertaking. Over the ensuing three years as I worked through my life story, Jennifer become much more than a writing instructor or an editor, both in which she excelled. She also became a mentor, a spiritual guide, a confidante, and - most importantly - a close and trusted friend. I am positive that if I had not been blessed with Jennifer’s wisdom, kindness, and guidance, my life’s journey would not have found me on the path of healing and happiness. I will always be indebted to Jennifer.”
TC, Washington USA, 2020, Writing Mentorship
"Time with Jennifer is a time of two souls walking a path together. She helped me to find closure on a book that has haunted me for thirty years. A book of tremendous pain and recovery and hope. She helped me with her awareness, kindness, connection, and a true open ability to really hear me. 'Finish the book,' I said. 'What about closure?' she asked me. I learned that closure is a place where I can rest and finally dream another dream. Thank you, Jennifer.
KF, Washington USA, 2020, Writing Mentorship
"I feel blessed to have crossed paths with Jennifer through the online writing course she offered via the Charter for Compassion. She became my writing mentor for over a year and this really changed the way I approached my writing: allowing my own voice to emerge more strongly, and helping me in very practical ways to trust in my talents and to write no matter what. And during a very challenging time in my life, I turned to her again for help. Because she also offers life transition support, I was able to get some really solid advice on how to assist two dying siblings. In all her offerings, Jennifer is nurturing. Every communication with her feels like I am being lifted to the possibility of facing my greatest burdens with joy."
MP, Quebec Canada, 2020, Writing Mentorship and Life Transition Support
"Jennifer’s mentoring transformed my relationship to writing. Her skillful guidance and effective exercises helped me address my inner critic and build confidence in my own potential as a writer. I highly recommend Jennifer to anyone looking for a wise guide into finding your own voice."
MZ, Washington USA, 2020, Writing Mentorship
"Looking for an amazing writing coach? Look no further than Jennifer Wilhoit, coach, writer, and counselor-extraordinaire. I was blessed to find Jennifer during the most stressful time of writing my book - facing deadlines, lost in a sea of notes, lacking discipline, and drowning in self-criticism. With Jennifer's ongoing support I righted the writing ship: got focused, stepped up my self-care, developed good writing habits ... and my creativity soared. I'm proud to be publishing my second book with Penguin Random House - and grateful for the deep, restorative, and heartfelt support that Jennifer brought to me just when I needed it most. As a psychologist and coach myself, I am a big believer in getting help. We all need champions to bolster us as we follow our passions. But you need to find the right coach - and with Jennifer, I got the best."
JH, New York USA, 2019, Writing Mentorship
"I have been writing stories, plays, poetry, and prose throughout my life and have boxes of material. My more recent writing has to do with the healing power of nature. I am going through a difficult health crisis. I started writing these pieces in short prose form. But working with Jennifer led me to give the pieces more space and structure. They emerged into a more clarified and condensed form as poems. I am so happy that Jennifer had this insight and worked with me to express my deepest feelings in this genre. I am grateful for Jennifer’s guidance and encouragement. It has sparked a whole new confidence in my writing."
CJ, Australia, 2019, Writing Mentorship
We received excellent ratings for our bookbinding and nature journal writing class at Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network. In response to what was most powerful about this class, a student wrote: “Being empowered to write.” Others commented: “Much thought and preparation.” “What I learned and experienced makes me want more.” “What a rich two days. Great instructors.” “Was really inspirational!” More extensive comments included: “Jennifer was so good at prompting our writing in such a variety of ways. I really enjoyed it. She brought such a lovely energy and spirit to our class. I found this class very restoring and motivating.” And, “Jennifer’s guidance through immersion in nature and then writing about our experience using prompts really gave me a method to connect more deeply with nature and with myself. Great collaborative class!”
Students, Washington USA, 2018, Class ("Books Meet Writing in the Natural World: Coptic-Bound Nature Journal/Sketchbook)
I received a wonderful rating for the emotions and writing course I taught for Whatcom Memoir Writing Month. In response to what did you like most about the course, students said: "the writing exercises; interaction with students; pace; the idea of using a sketchbook for journaling; instruction for caring for self during [the writing of] difficult topics; the balance of comfort and instruction; the instructor’s positive energy, focus, openness; strategies for working with tough feelings; instructor’s recognition of the complexity of emotions; [instructor’s] enthusiasm; the self-care diagram and the instructor’s personal examples."
Students, Washington USA, 2018, Class ("Journeying Through Emotions in Memoir Writing")
"My writing life was hopelessly stalled. I’d taken writing classes, earned certificates from the University of Washington, and earned my MFA in Creative Writing. I left graduation with one plan—to revise my thesis novel and write full time. Instead, I took on work as a freelance editor. I reduced the number of jobs I took to make time for writing. [Then] I took on demanding volunteer position[s]. I didn’t have time to write. The fear of rejection had a lot to do with [not writing], but it had to be something more. If I didn’t figure it out, I might as well drop the pretense of being a writer. I knew I couldn’t figure it out on my own. When I met Jennifer Wilhoit and found out she mentored creative people, something clicked. I hired her to be my mentor. We met almost every week for six months. During that time, I finally finished my young adult manuscript and began my next novel. What happened during those meetings with Jennifer changed my life. I learned to value my time and myself. I don’t have to justify my desire to write. I’ve found my confidence. Most important, I learned I am enough. If Jennifer hadn’t come into my life when she did, I don’t believe I would have finished [the] novel I’d worked on for years. I don’t believe I’d be so excited about my current work in progress. Work[ing] with Jennifer changed me. I’m so glad it did."
MS, Washington USA, 2018, Writing Mentorship
In response to exceptional parts of the program, participants indicated: "identifying with nature, self, and others; the writing tasks; opportunity to practice what the speaker suggests; hands-on; the ambiance (candles and nature objects on each table); surprisingly, enjoyed the writing; sharing of experiences around the room; honesty of participants; self-care model and guidance in using it; an exceptional speaker; such a calming training experience." In response to how would you apply this information, participants responded: "new ways to use writing; new ideas for self-care; ways to engage patients with nature; additional ways to journal." Final comments included: "Handout is especially useful; appreciate new avenues to personal insight; great presentation; informative; the best I have been to in a long time."
Hospice Volunteers, Washington USA, 2018, In-Service ("Volunteers Who Thrive: Writing and Nature Practices in Hospice Service")
"I am a priest ... and this course has helped me begin to see myself and my ministry in a new light that is graceful and grace-filled. I have always believed that compassion is an essential element in life and this course helped me get in touch with it in a very real way. The relationship between gratitude and compassion was enlightening. The connection with nature is lovely. A great course."
FD, Malaysia, 2018, Compassion Course
"This was a highly valuable course. It just entered into my life as I have been living it. I see this class as a quiet, steady, enlightening experience. My greatest insights came hours later, [when] I would realize more richness than I had initially experienced. The course has exceeded my expectations, and the experiences are important as I tackle the challenging and sometimes disturbing material of [another] course [about the Holocaust] that I'm now taking." Highest rating: five stars/excellent.
JPW, Arizona USA, 2018, Compassion Course
"Excellent (five-star rating). I found the exercises useful and enlightening ... a good foundation to build upon."
MD, West Virginia USA, 2018, Compassion Course
"I held the idea of my story for more than forty years. People encouraged me. Time and again I sat down to my computer to write the story that had to be told. Paragraph after paragraph, page after page, it still wasn’t coming together. And then I met Jennifer. I told her my story, and she warmed to it. She encouraged me to share it. I stepped into a working relationship with her. Jennifer guided me in baby steps, first urging me to put pen to paper and then fingers to the keyboard. She gently held my story and my hand, as I tore open my heart and delved into the past. At the same time, I was also traversing a painful divorce. We laughed and we cried. She coached and I wrote. At last, there is a completed manuscript, soon to be a book! I could not—would not—have done it without Jennifer!"
RCH, Oregon USA, 2018, Writing Mentorship
"This [course] has been such a pleasure. I thought that building the toolbox took a long time but it was worth it. Many of the practises really had a deeper effect on me than I thought they would. Connecting with nature in this way was profound. The things we wrote about and the questions you asked allowed me to dig deep."
BDG, Iceland, 2017, Compassion Course
"Your course came just at the right time. I enjoyed reading your essays. This course introduced me to the idea of self-compassion. I loved my times in nature and finding little treasures. It was a time of self-compassion. I also learned through this course how to step away from what I think someone needs and stop to really listen to [them]. I will look out for another such class."
MK, USA, 2017, Compassion Course
"Five stars = Excellent. I am grateful to have had the time to spend on this course. It helped me to see how I am already a compassionate human being ... and how I can move forward to be even more so."
PW, Florida USA, 2017, Compassion Course
"When I began working with Jennifer I had a small handful of hard-earned polished pieces of writing I was proud of. But I had no idea how to manifest my own work without some external force and serious struggle. Through our time working together l learned many tools to jump-start and establish a writing practice, how to be okay with myself if I stopped, and how to develop a body of work. However, what may be the most important lesson is how I learned to accept and write for myself first."
DS, California USA, 2017, Writing Mentorship
"Many people have told me I should write a book … and my inner critic would laugh. But [recently] the statement came with a recommendation to contact Jennifer Wilhoit as a potential book coach. From our first meeting I knew that this endeavor would change me. The experience was also hard work. I liked how gently Jennifer held my story. She was personally invested in helping me get my truth out of my heart and onto the page. Jennifer lovingly guided me through the many high and low terrains that constantly threatened to stop me in my tracks. Jennifer’s professional service as a consultant and mentor does not do justice to the many roles she played in my life during this time. Guide, confidante, and sister, she shared my tears and my joy. Jennifer gave me the needed insights to use my pain to move forward out of the hurt and into a perfect place of healing. To say that what began as a professional relationship changed me is an understatement. What I was given is a chance to rediscover the little girl I was in the past, the woman I am now, and who I have the potential to become in the future. Throughout this process I was given the opportunity to create a work that I am proud of. Most importantly, working with Jennifer on this project gave me an opportunity to have and become a lifelong friend."
BFJ, Washington USA, 2017, Writing Mentorship
"There was nothing accidental about my good fortune in finding Jennifer. People are placed into our lives for a specific purpose. I was originally seeking some legal counsel for a very difficult harassment situation. Through the guidance of my attorney, I realized what I really needed all these years: to find my voice; he put me in touch with Jennifer. I finally felt heard. Jennifer and I met in person over a few months working on self-care before really getting the bones and flesh of my life experiences on paper. Jennifer was extremely patient during the entire process, including my periods of sabotaging myself. She never stopped encouraging me to persevere, while reminding me to gently rest in the work of the stories. I am proud to say that I have a tangible document which I have begun sharing with others. I am in a place of strength now, due to the nurturing assistance I received from Jennifer. And most importantly, I have found my voice."
PQ, British Columbia Canada, 2017, Writing Mentorship
"I reject the concept of coincidence. Instead, synchronicity connected Jennifer and me across the continent at a time when my own professional current delivered me to a new frontier. That frontier involved leaving my zone of comfort, where at that time I had resided some forty-three continuously employed years, albeit at nine different entities. Jennifer inspired and enabled my entry into a zone of courage: writing. She is a kindred soul; we both embrace the spirit and practice of applying nature's wisdom to life and vocation. She fanned the flames of my fledgling writing and inspired me to continue full bore. She transformed my words from (dare I say?) good, to much better. My first book is at the publisher; Jennifer now has the second. I am more than halfway along with the third."
SBJ, Alabama USA, 2016, Editing
"I could never have gotten to this point without your intensely intuitive, compassionate support. I can’t even believe I wrote that many words strung together to make an entire novel. The desire to do so was burning deep inside of me and there was no escaping its gnawing provocation. You guided me out of blockage down into the burning depths to tap into what bubbled up over and over until completion. Thank you from the bottom of my interstitial heart!"
LDM, Maryland USA, 2016, Writing Mentorship
"I came across TEALarbor stories after reading a piece in the local paper written by Jennifer about a memoir that had been published posthumously. Since I had my own memoir languishing after several readings and revisions, I was inspired to find out more. I was just completing a six-month regimen of chemotherapy and surgery for ovarian cancer, and decided I didn’t want my memoir to be published posthumously. I’m someone with a degree in English who is very reluctant to let anyone change anything I’ve written. However, I was immediately sold on Jennifer thanks to her sensitivity in writing and her connection to nature. After a Skype meeting, I was even more eager to have her look at my work. I had read through my book so many times I couldn’t see the forest for the trees, and vice versa. Thanks to Jennifer’s ability to focus on both, and her attention to punctuation, formatting, and sentence structure, I’m now confident that the memoir is consistent in structure and syntax, and that it flows well. Just as important, for me, was the confidence I had that Jennifer was really behind my work, that she appreciated it, and that she wanted it to be published. It has been a delight to work with Jennifer Wilhoit!"
WW, California USA, 2015, Editing
"We used the mediation team of Jennifer Wilhoit and Roger Moss to help us with a family issue. They developed stellar relationships with us by building positive, trusting [rapport] with each participant and were a pleasure to work with. We found Jennifer and Roger to be extremely professional, dedicated, and invested in the process, as well as accommodating and responsive regarding scheduling. Both possess excellent communication skills and are extraordinary with follow-through. I [believe] they have the professional expertise and skills necessary to mediate any situation. I highly recommend Jennifer and Roger."
JS, California USA, 2015, Mediation
"I love how Jennifer presented her edits. I have a 'marked' copy and a 'clean' copy [which] makes it easy to see changes. The edits worked well [with] the spirit of my novel and match[ed] my voice. Jennifer has been a joy to work with and is such a gift. I am so thankful for our connection, and for [her] review and editing of my precious work! If you are an author looking for a copyeditor, I wholeheartedly recommend Jennifer!"
AC, Massachusetts USA, 2015, Editing
"Jennifer is a wonder. I love the way her words float through me and guide me from my inner world to the amazing outer landscape of nature. Her images of this inner/outer landscape (both written and photographed) are magical. I always enjoy browsing through her website or reading the latest Monday Musings on her blog. I am privileged to know Jennifer both professionally and personally. I met her through a friend who said, 'Hey, you’re a poet. Do you know Jennifer Wilhoit?' We met for coffee and I was immediately inspired by Jennifer’s passion for writing, and for mentoring other writers. I hired her to create my blog and the result is beautiful. Since getting to know her better, I realize that I am lucky to be able to sit across the table from this caring, sensitive, compassionate human being. Jennifer’s encouragement and willingness to gift others with her expertise and her smile is worth the moon and the stars. I strongly recommend you take a leap of faith with this wonderful woman."
LKM, California USA, 2014, Writing Mentorship
"My practice continues to evolve into a delicately woven tapestry. I retreat to my spare bedroom/office for mindfulness and quiet, as I gaze out on the river. In such moments, unfettered by work and plans, I begin to hear and see. The ducks skimming the water on takeoff, the ice floes on the river, the honking of the geese, scurrying squirrels, quivering pines, and so much more. Experiences filter through my life that would otherwise be lost. Then I begin to write. And for this I am the richer. Thank you for opening this window."
Anonymous, 2014, Life Transition Support
"Jennifer walked into an unusual situation when my father hired her to help him organize and complete a book he had been working on for fifteen years; unfortunately, he passed away after only two meetings with her. [When] my sister and I decided to finish dad’s book [for him], we met with Jennifer at his funeral dinner. Knowing that we were suffering the loss of our father, she was very helpful. Since my sister and I live out of state and did not know what still needed to be done, Jennifer collected [and compiled] our dad’s manuscript, his notes to her, and photos he wanted inserted. The book is scheduled for publication after the first of the year. We are eternally grateful to Jennifer for her compassion and help in getting his book published."
DP - Bereaved Daughter, Iowa USA, 2014, Writing Mentorship
“It was [my] best practice to journey [through a life transition] with a mentor who could see beyond my own biased borders and lend new ways to measure and confirm the path leading forward with her support of balance, stillness and wholeness. I recognized and learned that all I needed was there within me. At a profound moment when changing the career of my passion, [I had] to return to the previous job to complete and organize things. [My mentor] said, 'Why linger?' That saved my life. A wise sage came through the simplicity of those words; that spirit is Jennifer Wilhoit.”
JO, California USA, 2014, Conflict Coaching
"I reached out to Jennifer when I was applying to law schools and needed an editor for my personal statement. The editing was fantastic! She has a keen eye and does impressive, flawless work. In addition to editorial help, she advised me when I needed it. She encouraged me to apply to a wide range of schools and to take chances I would not have taken otherwise. Even after submitting my apps, I have been able to contact her again to ask for advice. Jennifer is so much more than an editor; she is a friend. She gives her support and her time. Jennifer has truly been a factor in my successful admission to law school."
RK, California USA, 2014, Editing
"I went to the TEALarbor stories website and began reading it. I was impressed and intrigued. I first communicated with Jennifer [about the workshops] through an email and her words were welcoming, like she already knew me. The whole set up of her workshops is geared with compassion, kindness, and great love for the craft of writing. I was a little afraid that she would make us read and I was glad she did not. Guided by Jennifer’s soft-spoken prompts, I was in awe of how much I wrote and how much she made me think about the direction I want to take with my writing. I felt I was giving birth to a new paradigm in my writing: a fresh one that is more mature, less critical, kind and compassionate to my own ideas. I was also inspired by all the other participants [who had] so many wonderful pearls of wisdom to add to the gift of Jennifer’s workshops."
CA, California USA, 2014, Writing Workshop
"I am truly struck by the thought of this [CV] being a story. I feel particularly blessed to have had you shepherd me through this week so far ... [and] for all your support, encouragement and belief [in me]."
CK, Alaska USA, 2013, Writing Mentorship
"Jennifer was able to help me in a moment of great need as I found myself backed up against a critical writing deadline. She quickly grasped the nature and urgency of my situation and rose to the occasion in an incredible way. Even under intense time pressure, her work was thorough and highly professional. Her keen eye was an enormous gift to the success of my writing. Jennifer understood the tone and cadence of my writing almost immediately. Moreover, after a single conversation, I also felt that she understood me. She asked all the right questions needed to move the project forward quickly and effectively, and with great care in preserving my voice."
WS - M.A. Candidate, California USA, 2013, Editing
"Working with Jennifer was monumentally helpful to me. Prior to hiring her as my coach, I was struggling to balance work, life, and PhD obligations. After just a few sessions with her, I found the clarity and courage to make some changes in both my inner and outer life. I am so grateful for her insights, experience, and compassion!"
DM, Colorado USA, 2013, Writing Mentorship
"Jennifer is very understanding and knows exactly what is in your heart. She was very helpful to me by editing my writings in a way that I was not able to express on my own. I am extremely blessed to know her, and also I appreciate her help because without her I couldn't be who I am today."
TT, California USA, 2013, Multilingual Editing
"My work with you was helpful in a variety of ways. Your attention to the details of my story helped me stay on track, to stay focused when I was distracted by the demands of other parts of my life. You guided me to the ‘point of the matter.’ The writing exercises tapped into the non-linear part of my thinking and created a space for those thoughts to come out onto paper and to be looked at with gentle, non-judging eyes; this revealed so much of the deeper contents of my work. Your attention to my schedule was so supportive for me and my busy life. My east coast time and your west coast time don’t always match well, but you were willing to do what was necessary to make it work for me. Finally, it was very helpful for me that we are aligned in our worldviews; your understanding of how I move through the world helped me be seen. Thank you for that."
DGP, Maine USA, 2013, Story & Nature Guiding ©
"Jennifer's mentoring has taught me how to tap into layers of my creative self that I'd not known ... to plow old fields and plant new seeds. By guiding me back to the earth, she has helped me discover my center ... led me to the fertile ground wherefrom my best effort is nourished ... helped me lift and carry the rocks in my path. When I first engaged TEALarbor stories' services, my intent was to nudge the flow of and improve my writing. I have learned to write the flow of and improve my life experience as well."
JH, Washington USA, 2012, Writing Mentorship and Story & Nature Guiding ©
“I was lucky to meet Jennifer in a workshop. Her cheery and caring personality called my attention. She was in my mind when I needed some editing help. She did a wonderful job. I write essays, or stories based on my life; Jennifer immediately captured the sanctity and complexity of them. She is professional, concise, and timely. It was a pleasure to work with her."
NC, Washington USA, 2012, Bilingual Editing
"My time on the island with you was just what I needed. I have felt more myself than I have in a long time. My energy has returned, I find myself singing silly little songs at odd moments, and I have even written. Taking my journal to the garden, I watch a bee pollinate the beans and the hot air balloons just overhead; I write. Too many distractions, but I write. Even work is okay. For the first time in many, many, many months, I actually was excited to go to work that first day back. I am excited about something, truly excited, for the first time in a very long time. It feels good. Thanks so much for your presence and support. It was an amazing five days for me!"
KF, Washington USA, 2011, Story & Nature Guiding ©