Hello and welcome to my Substack patch - I’m Gena McLean…

a seeker who loves to ponder and wonder and feel and read and listen and write her way through life’s challenges and changes.

I have for many years believed that we humans are here to grow in consciousness and compassion: that our life is one tremendous passage of spills and thrills that will encourage us to open, learn, let go, heal and ultimately become the most wise and kind person we could possibly be…if we let them.

My initiation into this sacred journey occurred when I was 17. A little understood diagnosis of IBS followed with the words ‘there’s nothing you can do about it’ triggered something in me.

I felt an uprising, a revolt - how could there be nothing? Didn’t I have some power, some input, some say over my own wellness and wellbeing?

Even at the tender awkward age of 17 something in me knew there had to be more.

And off I went in search of whatever that could be.

My first teacher was the revered mind/body/spirit champion Louise Hay and there have been hundreds more. Over the last 35 years I have read devoured thousands of books, articles, blog posts and more recently podcasts from leading new-thought leaders, old-school and contemporary philosophers, holistic scientists, psychologists and healers, and those brave humans that bare all in their memoirs and online journals.

I have collected wisdom and used it to transform my suffering and my struggle with chronic pain and the debilitating symptoms that still plague me.

And I have written - thousands and thousands of journal pages exploring and processing the human condition as I experience it.

Twice I’ve turned the wisdom I have learned into book form.

One was published in 2009 as a card set and booklet by Innovative Resources here in Central Victoria, called Note To Self.

The other, a book I self-published in 2021 called Find Your Way. Its tagline: grow through challenge and change to live a more meaningful life summarising my personal philosophy of what’s possible as we face and live this precious gift called life.

Of all the quotes that have moved me none have shaped me or driven me as much as this from renowned psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross whose groundbreaking work changed our relationship to death and grief:

You will not grow if you sit in a beautiful flower garden, but you will grow if you are sick, if you are in pain, if you experience losses, and if you do not put your head in the sand, but take the pain as a gift to you with a very, very specific purpose.

It’s a quote I have turned to in my most despairing moments - times when I couldn’t bear another day of pain, be it physical, emotional or spiritual.

Its message, a much-needed balm easing my hopelessness and inspiring me to keep going on this journey - to keep looking for meaning and sharing what I find.

The pain and losses continue for me - as they will for you. And not only from illness, but from life and its nature to change, changing our responses and our roles, our careers and our lifestyles, and the relationships and people we share life with.

This journey and our becoming - the evolutionary path that we are each on - is what I am called and committed to exploring and sharing, and my hope is that I may contribute in some small way to the growing of wisdom and kindness that we are each here to do.

It’s so great to have you here…thanks for reading : )

And please consider subscribing — it’s free! And I am in the process of consolidating my e-newsletters and Substack will be the primary way I will share. Subscribing means you won’t miss out — every new edition of my newsletter will go directly to your Inbox.

Plus I’m working on plans to build my community here — a place we can grow wiser and kinder together (that is safe from algorithms!) and through my favourite practice: journaling.

PS. my website and publishing name is SEEKER & SAGE and is home to my book Find Your Way and several other free eBooks that will help you start or re-start your journaling practice.

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A persistent seeker and writer sharing learnings that have healed, nurtured and grown me.


Seeker, Writer, Reader...sharing learnings from the journey.