"A year ago I met Sue for our first coaching session. Through her probing and listening we pinpointed areas that, with specific attention to my thinking and choices, help me:

  • be personally more effective
  • move towards a more balanced life

My spouse and employees have noticed a positive change, as have I."

Sales Manager
Fortune 500 Company





Workshop and Training Topics

Looking for a workshop or training session presenter for your organization or company? Check out these possible topics:

  • Effective Communication: Listening, Learning and Leadership
  • Stress and Time Management
  • Fostering Job Satisfaction: Coaching and Mentoring Staff
  • What Matters Most? Develop your company or personal vision that aligns with your values
  • Board Engagement: Tools for Invigorating Your Board of Directors
  • Choices: How do I make a decision when I have so many choices?
  • Giving Helpful and Effective Performance Feedback
  • Mindfulness
  • Enhancing Creativity
  • Finding Balance in Life and Work

Designing Your Encore

A workshop for adults 50+ years old who are ready to design the next life chapter. Would you like to rethink your work? Perhaps you are planning for retirement or already retired and wonder how you will make this time of your life meaningful. How would you like to live your encore?

We will dive into fun and engaging thought exercises, discussion, and discovery to help you design your encore.

Tuesdays, 1:30 - 3:30pm
September 12, 19, 26, October 3, 10, 17, 2017

Six-week workshop series, 2 hours per session, $150 for series
Lafayette, LA. Address will be provided after sign up.

Designing Your Encore creates space and time for enhancing your life in the context of community. Thank you for a wonderfully creative workshop. It was so thoughtfully organized and carried out, a treasure.” N. McDaniel, participant Jan/Feb 2017

Some of the questions we will answer in the workshop include:

  • What's next for me in my work/life?
  • What action might I take to kick my life up a notch?
  • How may I make a larger contribution in my community?
  • How do I meet people who might be interested in my ideas or from whom I may learn?

In a small group, we’ll explore these questions and more. We will have fun. We will be inspired and challenged. We will be curious together. The experience just might change your life.

This workshop is partially based on the book, Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived Joyful Life by Bill Burnett & Dave Evans.

For more information and to register, contact Sue 337.534-0954 or sue at oak-communications dot com. If you are interested in this workshop and the dates/time do not work for you, contact Sue as she will be starting other groups soon.

Designing Your Next Chapter

A workshop for adults who are ready to design the next life chapter. Would you like to rethink your work? Have you considered volunteering or adding a new activity to your life but are not sure what or how? This workshop will help you envision your next steps.

We will explore many of the questions described above.

Six-week workshop series, 2 hours per session, $150 for series. Dates TBA. Contact Sue to express interest.

"I really enjoyed this workshop. It's opened up for me a new way of thinking and researching things I'm interested in. It has gotten me excited about my next chapter." Participant March/April 2017

For more information and to register, contact Sue 337.534-0954 or sue at oak-communications dot com. As a group forms, we will decide on the dates and times that match group member schedules.

Designing Your Next Chapter Webinar

This workshop is similar in design except that it is a webinar-based version.

Six-week workshop series, 2 hours per session, $120 for series.

For more information and to register, contact Sue 337.534-0954 or sue at oak-communications dot com. As a group forms, we will decide on the dates and times that match group member schedules.

Writing and Mindfulness Workshop

Contact Sue to express interest. Next date TBA.

The process of writing is a way of making sense of the world. Through writing, especially in a safe and supportive environment, it is possible to “break through inertia and become awake,” as Natalie Goldberg writes.

Using mindfulness practices, writing prompts, and dialogue we will have fun, meet new people, and discover a bit more about ourselves.

No writing experience is necessary. Bring a favorite pen and journal or notebook.

Contact Sue Schleifer to learn more and to express interest in attending the workshop the next time it is offered: 337.534-0954 or sue at oak-communications dot com.

Writing Down Dementia: A Writing Workshop

The process of writing is a way of making sense of the world.  When a family member or friend has dementia, we want nothing more than to make sense of something that is incomprehensible and weighted in loss.  Through the writing experience, especially over time in a safe, supportive environment, we work through our confusion and grief to discover understanding and joy in ways we had not imagined.

Joyce Carol Oates, in a story entitled, “Why We Write About Grief” in the New York Times (February 26, 2011) writes, “Profound losses leave us paralyzed and mute, unable really to comprehend them, still less to speak coherently about them. Yet, eventually, we do speak – we breathe, we sleep, we eat, we go for walks in the sun, we find ourselves laughing with our friends … as we lose the white-hot flame of the most intransigent grief, and pass into another, less desperate sort of being.”

Writing Down Dementia is a writing workshop for people who have or have had a loved one with dementia. It is also designed for caregivers and professionals working in the field of aging services. The workshop offers participants a rich experience of creative expression and emotional support.

“Your gently guided free writing exercises combined with reading what I wrote aloud and discussion was a powerful way to get some clarity on my daily dilemma arising from my caregiver activities. It was also great to be reminded that I am not alone.” Jean

"I felt camaraderie with the other people in the workshop. I found humor in what was going on. It gave me a perspective that I found invaluable. And, I realized that I had the ability to write." Bernice

Group members:

  • discover new ways of relating to a family member still living with dementia
  • access long-forgotten family stories that they now may view through wiser eyes
  • let go of guilt and shame about not being the perfect caregiver
  • learn who they are separate from their caregiver role
  • emerge and grow stronger from the pain of the loss of a loved one

Writing prompts are carefully selected to evoke reflection and inspire writing. Prompts are simple phrases that may be the beginning of a sentence or perhaps a line from a poem.  Sometimes we use musical prompts, as songs can be powerful vehicles for memory and emotion.

Group members then free write for five to ten minutes. Participants are encouraged to write whatever comes to their pen and not censor their thoughts. They do not need to be concerned about writing complete sentences or using punctuation.

Writing and coach-facilitated conversation create an atmosphere where complete strangers quickly feel safe in sharing their stories, laughter, tears and healing.

No writing experience is necessary.

Oakland, CA and via conference call - We are accepting new members for this group either in person or via conference call. Contact if interested.

Sue and Kim presented a Writing Down Dementia workshop at the American Society on Aging 2011 conference, Aging in America, in San Francisco.


Mindfulness Workshop
Mindfulness is defined by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Wherever You Go There You Are: Mindfulness Meditation in Everyday Life, as "paying attention on purpose, in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally."
Mindfulness is a simple technique that helps you to reduce stress and promotes well-being. Mindfulness practice helps you to develop awareness of thoughts, emotions, and the body. This awareness allows you to identify sources of stress before they intensify.
In the workshop, I share basic methods for practicing mindfulness in daily life. We discuss some of the recent research on the benefits of mindfulness including contributing to a healthy brain and greater happiness.  
Together we practice a few mindfulness exercises that you can use at home or at work.
I have been practicing mindfulness for more than ten years. I have written two books which relate to mindfulness: The Key to the Castle: Zen and Travel Stories of Trust and Cultivating a Mindful Life.


To schedule a workshop, training session or brown bag talk at your company or organization, please call.

For more information, call or email. See contact information below.