“You are a living, breathing story. What you make of your story makes you.”
—Barbara Stahura, CJF


“Story is the mother of us all.”
—Christina Baldwin


“We live not by things, but by the meanings of things.”
—Antoine de St.-Exupery


“The story of your life is the tale that you repeatedly tell yourself about who you are, what you want, and what you can and cannot do.”
—Carol S. Pearson, PhD.


“Everything is story, including our identities, our selves, our meanings and purposes, our theories about the world.”
—Dr. Lewis Mehl-Madrona


“We do not see things as they are, we see them as we are.”
—The Talmud


“The words you speak become the house you live in.”


“Change the story and you change perceptions; change perception and you change the world.”
—Jean Houston


“Story. Story is my medicine.”
—Deena Metzger

You have often heard the term “life story” and know you have one. What if, instead of simply having a story, you ARE a living, breathing Story? And one always capable of positive change at that?

Just as an author creates her characters’ realities with the words she commits to the page, you create your own experience of reality—your Story—by what you think about it. In a very real sense, what you make of your Story makes you. The wonderful thing is, you can explore your Story at any time to discover how to empower it—and you.

It’s time to explore your Story if:

  • something in your life isn’t working as well as you would like;
  • you’re feeling a gentle, persistent nudge towards a more authentic life, however you define that for yourself;
  • you already know the change you want to make but feel stuck in place; or
  • you want to discover ways to live a life even better than the one you’re living now.

As a living, breathing Story always capable of positive change, you are willing to:

  • explore diverse ideas and approaches—even if they challenge your current worldview;
  • be curious and committed enough to do the honest introspection necessary;
  • keep a journal (If you don’t already do this, know that you need not be a “good writer” or have any previous journaling or writing experience); and
  • choose to become the activator of your Story, rather than its captive.

A Living, Breathing Story
Journaling Programs

A Living, Breathing Story: Journaling for Self-Discovery, Empowerment, Joy and Ease

Wednesdays — Sept. 6, 13, 20, Oct. 4, 11: Using proven journaling techniques, learn how you ARE a Living, Breathing Story always capable of positive change, and how your Story–who and what you believe yourself to be–determines your experience of reality. Offered through Continued Learning at the University of Evansville.


A Living, Breathing Story Fall Journaling Retreat

Oct. 20-22, 2017: Held at Kordes Retreat Center in Southwestern Indiana, this restful yet soul-energizing weekend program will allow to you experience yourself as a Living, Breathing Story always capable of positive change. You will learn how your own Story–who and what you believe yourself to be–determines your experience of reality. Using proven journaling techniques and basic neuroscience, you will learn how to become more positive and effective in your life.

Limited to six participants. For more information, get in touch here.

I’m Not There—Yet: Writing Your Way Through Transition

Fall 2017 (dates to be announced): This program is designed it for women who are either going through any kind of current transition (career, relationship, health, etc.) or who want to better learn how to manage transitions in general. Learn the steps of the transitions process, the various kinds of transitions (even the non-event transition, which stems from dreams that do not happen), and how to plan for living your New Way. And in order to strengthen and deepen your process, you will learn proven journaling techniques to be used both during the sessions and in-between that will help you manage any transition, now or later. No writing or journaling experience is necessary to successfully complete this program.


Free Journaling Booklet: Writing for Well-Being

Let’s keep in touch!  Join my email community and receive my free journaling booklet, “Writing for Well-Being: Four Simple Journaling Techniques.” You’ll also be kept up-to-date with new blog posts, programs, events, and more.





Michele G.

Barbara has a subtle yet powerful way of merging her scientific knowledge with the emotional aspects of how our word choices can literally change patterns within our minds and ultimately our life story.  From the first day of her program I caught myself implementing the changes we learned through journaling and discussion reaping the benefits of more positivity in my daily interactions with others as well as with myself.  Thank you, Barbara.

Michele G.
Anne K.

It was 6 months after the death of my daughter and granddaughter, my heart was still full of pain, confusion and sadness but the content of the class lifted me above this huge mess…Barbara really led us on a deep and beautiful journey. Being able to move from the harsh reality of the events to “what I am going to do with what happened in my life” was extremely empowering.

Each exercise was well crafted and all her responses were full of knowledge. Following one of my posts, she wrote: “Anne, when I read your posts, I am always blessed by the beauty of your writing as well as by the depth of what you express. That you have decided to ‘not walk as a victim’ is a huge victory. Brava!” Barbara has a great ability to connect to her students!

Two years later, I am still digging in the pool of resources that she left us by the end of the class.

Anne K.
Cecile M.

I have known Barbara for more than 20 years, working with her in a number of ways. As a writer, she is clear, concise, and explores her topics to provide thought-provoking reading. As a journal and retreat facilitator, Barbara prompts us to touch upon the dimensions of ourselves that reside deep within. I have learned from Barbara that there is always more to discover about oneself, and journaling with her has a way of slowly opening the petals of those inner qualities. The space she holds during her sessions allows for trust, vulnerability, and respect for the entire process.

Cecile M.
Todd P.

I started in one of Barb’s journaling groups a few years after my head injury. Before being invited to Barb’s journaling group, by my in/outpatient speech therapist, I was in an outpatient program to learn, or should I say relearn, how to read, write and perform math functions/calculations again. I recall feeling the burn of frustration inside for not having the ability to express my ideas fully. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to be invited to Barb’s journaling group. I feel it is with her journaling group and her prompts that helped improve my brain function, help realign my cross-wired neurons, improve my thought processes and improve my communication level. I still feel my inputting processing speed and outputting processing speed is delayed as compared to those whom have not had a head injury of sorts. But with Barb’s journal group and coaching I learned that that is ok, and to continue to write to push to achieve to heal.

Thank you, Barb.

Todd P.
Copyright ©2017 Barbara Stahura. All rights reserved.