And As We Wind it Down…

December 27, 2015

It’s finally quiet. Wrapping paper and tissue has been sorted, saved and recycled, there are cookies left to indulge in when the nibbles strike, and there are naps to be had. I love this time of year. I enjoy the feeling of winding down another year. (And it’s almost the only time of year I get to actually read novels and lie around in my jammies for good parts of the day!)

It’s also a good time to reflect on the ending of one year and the dawning of the next. Much has happened this year, and because of all that has gone on, my podcast has been stalled at episode 99 for quite a number of months…but I have great plans to begin 2015 with episode 100, so stay tuned!
imageMy book that came out in May, “What They See: How to Stand Out and Shine in Your New Job”, is doing well and is still on the Amazon bestseller list in both Canada and the U.S.  I’ll be doing some speaking gigs and workshops in 2016 on topics related to the book, and continue to hope it finds its way into a curriculum or two in the near future. I’m learning a lot about book marketing, and learning that there is always ever more to learn!

In an upsetting turn of events, the college I have worked for for the past 8 years downsized half of the department I was teaching in, and so our advanced layoff notices arrived (in classic fashion) ten days before Christmas. As anyone who has ever had this happen knows, it’s a nasty feeling to be no longer needed at work. The upside of this is that because it became such a difficult and unhappy atmosphere in the months leading up to this layoff, it was somewhat of a relief to be done with it… and as things happen, new opportunities mysteriously appeared as soon as those doors closed. What I will miss the most, of course, are the students.

New adventures, however, await! My half-time church work is most life-giving, and I continue to enjoy exploring this journey of faith with those I serve. Scott and I will soon be traveling with a group of other ministers to visit the Holy Land…a dream come true. While there is much that will be difficult and challenging about such a visit (from the political, humanitarian and justice perspectives), actually being able to stand by the Sea of Galillee, and to walk through Bethlehem and visit other biblical sites will be utterly incredible. I feel very grateful to be taking part in what feels like an epic adventure.

I’ve also been doing a fair bit of freelance writing lately. I’ve got an article published in the Every Dog magazine this winter (Continental Kennel Club) and another article in their upcoming Spring issue. I’ve got several articles published on the website, and more to come there too. Writing is something I very much enjoy and can work around my busy family…(all of whom are performers and are on various stages around town at all times of the year, keeping us very busy as parental units!) I look forward to more of these freelance opportunities this next year.

And so I wanted to say a quick hello, and to let you know I am still very much committed to bringing you helpful and useful content here at Communication Diva…and that your listening of podcasts, reading of posts and interacting on the various social media sites means a lot to me. I am grateful for all the shares and likes, for the emails and reviews, for the support and the love you have shared over the years. I read every comment, and I check to see what people are interested in and responding to, even when I am racing about trying to do too much, which is fairly often for sure.

With God’s grace and a little luck, I plan to be much more active on this site in 2016, and I look forward to hearing from more of you about what you want to talk about or learn more about, or what is going on in your life as far as soft skills and communication topics go. Please reach out and connect, I’m always delighted to hear from you!

All the best of what’s left of 2015 to each of you, and I wish you many blessings for 2016.

In peace and light,



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Kelvin Nikkel December 28, 2015 at 5:46 am

A belated Merry Christmas Jennifer and may 2016 bring you nothing but joy and may all your surprises be pleasant ones. Hoping to connect with you in 2016 as my wife and I will be moving back to that area mid to late 2016. Take care and best wishes always


JennSwanson December 28, 2015 at 10:28 am

Thank you Kelvin and same to you! I look forward to connecting when you’re back. Happy New Year!


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