Retirement and later life can be the start of a personal, inner revolution. A goring number of people are committed to changing the fear of growing older & death into meaningful connection & life purpose.
The death of my mother in 2016 was the birth of Life-Stage.
At the time I was involved in providing young offenders with a rites-of-passage experience in the woods. But at the age of 67, I was finding it increasingly difficult to keep up with the physical demands of this mentoring work.
Traveling back from my mother’s memorial service, I wondered about how to come to terms with such enormous events as retirement and the death of my parent. Surely I could find the support and expertise I was looking for? There were relevant courses in America, but I could find nothing in the UK.
With my background in training and 40 years of Buddhist study, I was able to devise and facilitate 'conscious ageing' workshops with Felice Rhiannon, and in 2021, I wrote The Power of Ageing.
Today, Life-Stage has a strong core group who support regular events such as the monthly Forum, on-line courses and workshops. More information
Felice has been a yoga therapist specialising in teaching yoga in all its aspects to people living with cancer, heart disease and muscular-skeletal challenges. Upon leaving that work, Felice was ordained as a OneSpirit interfaith minister, serving elders and the LGBT community. Felice most recently trained as a workshop leader with Sage-ing International and presents workshops in the UK and world-wide, as well as one-to-one sessions in conscious ageing/spiritual eldering.
Cathy (MBACP (Accred) MSc) is trained in psychosynthesis, an approach which works from the perspective of the whole person - mind, body, feelings, and spirit or purpose. She brings in approaches drawn from other disciplines including NLP coaching, cognitive behavioural therapy, art therapy and mindfulness meditation. She has more than 20 years experience of working with people in conflict and has an interest in the creative use of conflict for developing ourselves.
Spencer has a background in palliative nursing and is a founder member of End of Life Doulas, UK. He has created some extraordinary DIY funerals and has enabled people to care for friends and relatives at the end of life. Spencer has also set up and hosted one of the first Death Cafes in the Brighton area. He aims to communicate a sense of honesty, lightness and love to his professional work and to the Life-Stage team.
Ben is 62 and has spent his life in the film industry specialising in documentary which has taken him around the world many times. He is well known for the double Grammy nominated project 1 Giant Leap, where they interviewed many about the challenges of ageing. He is a mentor and leader within the award winning charity, A Band Of Brothers. Ben is a skilled facilitator and holds space for the many and diverse opinions in the Life-Stage Forum every month
Adam trained in Drama and Education at Goldsmiths before writing scripts for the BBC and many other organisations. He ran a media company for twenty years and designed training programmes for large organisations such as Amnesty International. He has completed A Band Of Brothers ten day Leadership Course as well as the Foundation Level on LWDW Death Doula Training Course. In 2019 he became certified by The Institute of Noetics as a Workshop Facilitator before writing The Power of Ageing.
Simon’s background was in the Corporate Pension World; previous employers include JPMorgan where he was head of UK Defined Contribution and Legal & General Asset Management where he focused on delivering sustainable investment solutions for pension clients. His work over the last thirty years has led him to explore the evolving world of retirement, how people prepare for life beyond work and how Corporate attitudes to employing older workforces are changing.
He is also an artist, poet and an apprentice elder in communities that use rites of passage as means of transformation.
My personal interest has always been to identify how our emotions, mind and instincts combine to create our personality
I have enjoyed helping many people over the years to understand themselves and those around them better but now in my late 50s and having looked after both my parents before they died, it has made me acutely aware of my own mortality and has made me question what do I want to do now with the precious time I have left. With Life-Stage I have found great comfort from being in the company of people exploring these same issues.