Mindfulness in the Messy Middle: Holding Space to Explore the Place Between Grief and Joy

[Online Live, Real Time Workshop]

Where are you in your pandemic journey?

  • Are you feeling exhausted, stuck, or anxious?
  • Are you hard on yourself because you feel you “should” have done more by now?
  • Are you struggling with disappointment, loss, or trauma from the year?
  • Are you inspired and thriving, but feel like you can’t share your excitement openly because people seem to be in a different headspace?

No matter where you find yourself, in a valley or on a mountain top:

You are not alone.

You have endured and experienced so much this year — you are worth it to pause and recognize all of it.

If you want to make space to cultivate the seeds and sh-tty fertilizer from this season, but:

  • You don’t know where to begin…
  • You don’t know how to do it without toxic positivity bypassing…
  • You don’t know where you can process and share safely, because no one seems to want to talk right now.

We are making room to be present in the messy middle, to create meaningful connections — to ground yourself, to connect with others, and consider your place in our emerging world.  

Gather in real-time for this highly interactive, guided journey to compassionately and creatively explore both the joys and griefs of your pandemic journey as the big-hearted person that you are.

Express yourself in a supportive, non judgmental, brave space, as we offer the gift of presence to one another. You will be invited to:

  • Personal reflection through expressive lettering, journaling, and visualization
  • Share (if you feel compelled to) and be held in community
  • Listen compassionately and actively in solidarity with others who share

By sharing in heart-centred conversations and creative art expression, you’ll have opportunity to make meaningful connections with what’s going on in your heart and life, and with others in community.

All of you is welcome here, whether you’re feeling stirred to be still or to speak, whether you’re dressed and in your office, or taking zoom calls from bed in your messy bun with the camera off. Beginners and all levels of art making / mindfulness welcome (no prior experience necessary).

Focusing on creative exploration (and less on precise technical how-to’s), this workshop will empower you with expressive lettering as a tool for self-care and self-discovery. 

Come with an open heart, ready to be present and to engage. Bring with you:

  • Something to write with (pens/crayons/markers and journal/paper)
  • A roll of toilet paper
  • Anything that makes you feel cozy — a candle, blanket, or glass of wine

You’re invited to experience:

Creative Self Care

Show up for yourself, slow down, refresh your heart, and turn on your creative spark in a supportive, collaborative space. Manage stress, increase compassion, self awareness, and alignment in your life.

Guided creative reflection

Practice mindfulness tools that will support you to walk through any season of challenge or transition. Engage in an intentional space of reflection through guided prompts, visualization, journalling, and creative exercises.

collaborative community

Create meaningful connections and share honest conversations with others in community to counter disconnection and isolation. Deepen insight and inspiration by connecting with like minded compassionate souls.


What’s Included

Mindset for Confident Creative Expression
Expert Facilitation of Creative Reflection + Conversation
Prompts for Compassionate Creative Expression
Collaborative Community of Creatives

Who this is for

stressed out, Seeking Rest

• You’re exhausted, but you struggle to slow down, deep down. Mindfulness, meditation or journaling feels like a struggle.

• You don’t remember the last time you’ve had some “me time” or creative time.

Renaissance or Closet Creative

• You miss being creative and want to resurrect the calligraphy or crafty things you did in your younger days.

• You’re multi-passionate searching for a new outlet. Or, you’re a seasoned calligrapher or bullet journaler seeking to grow in self discovery.


Curious Explorer

• You have zero lettering experience (bad handwriting welcome here!) but are curious to try your hand at it.

• You may not identify as creative, but you love stretching your comfort zone, trying new things, and developing yourself.


real time learner

• You believe in the power of being seen and heard, live, in a supportive community.

• You know that showing up in real time better supports your growth. You have too many untouched webinar replays. You know that inspirational affirmations are empty unless they are integrated holistically.

Satisfied Students

Justine’s approach was very engaging, and I found myself really pulled in and actively participating immediately. Every step of her process was unique. Her leadership through the exercises was clear and approachable, kind and full of grace. Never in my life have 2 hours flown by so quickly! Still, days later, I am thinking about some of the things we worked on, and I will be building in some time to my schedule each week to look through the notes and build on them, while working on some of the questions that came up for me during the session. Thank you Justine! It was a life-changing session for me!


Justine always does a great job in providing a safe and intimate space (even online) that makes people feel comfortable to share their deep feelings. I loved the raw emotions people showed. I felt heard and supported by others, and I was able to do the same for others. The energy felt so genuine. And the journaling questions were really good prompts that helped me reflect and get in touch with my feelings and emotions.


This Mindfulness in the Messy Middle workshop, using a variety of creative and mindfulness practices, was really helpful as I ponder this past year of living in a time of the pandemic. In the past, I would’ve tried to put my experiences into a neat and tidy package. However, life is complicated and through the creative practices during the workshop, I was able to begin to understand that in such a difficult time, there are a lot of struggles – and there also can be a lot of joy. And, this is all okay.

I really enjoyed this workshop. Despite the feeling of being distracted, I was able to calm myself and come into the welcoming virtual space that Justine created so graciously. The music was super calming and chill, and the vibe was very respectful. People shared and listened, and it was lovely to meet like minded people who are working on their personal growth and creativity. It really helped me find clarity on how the past year has impacted me, and what I am looking forward to in the coming year.


You’ve got questions? We have answers!

What can I expect?

You can expect a guided journey through:

  • creative reflection/expressive exercises
  • mindfulness/visualization exercises
  • facilitated journalling
  • conscious curated conversation prompts

There will be ample time to reflect on your own, but also to connect with and glean from the group’s collective experience and wisdom. You will have opportunity to share with others, but it isn’t mandatory if you’re in more of a contemplative listening mood.

Do I have to share verbally? Will I be called on to speak?

No, sharing is never mandatory. It’s important to me that you participate in a way that is supportive to you.

There will be multiple ways that you will be invited to choose how you can engage your participation. This means you share at a level that you decide, when you feel ready or feel compelled to speak, with or without the camera on.

I do not support “peer pressure vulnerability”. Sharing is always optional and you reserve the right and have full permission to pass.

Come as you are, your full self. And if that means you’re in a more contemplative listening mood, that is totally okay.

If something comes up for you that you prefer not to share with the whole group or in your small group, but you would still like to have a 1:1 conversation about it, you can always reach out for a conversation in a private chat, or at the end of the session where there will be extra space to connect informally.


Do I have to have the camera on?

You’re welcome to show up just as you are, whether you’re dressed and in your office, or taking zoom calls from bed in your messy bun with the camera off. 

That being said, you will be invited to consider keeping your camera on if you are feeling up for it, as studies have been shown that can have an effect on the sense of engagement, connection, and community in the virtual space, both on your end and on ours as we facilitate. 

If it’s because you have pets, partners, or kids running around, know that we don’t view those as unwelcome distractions. Just keep your microphone on mute.

What if I don't identify as artistic or creative?

Not to worry. All workshops are designed to be accessible to beginners.

All technical ‘how to letter’ workshops are suitable for beginners.  

For Mindfulness Workshops, we will engage in reflective practices equipping you with tools you can walk away with for self awareness, self discovery, and empowerment. These include options such as writing, drawing, speaking, meditating, visualizing… Multiple options and levels will always be provided, and you get to decide what is the most supportive way for you to engage. No prior experience is necessary by any means.

Deep down, I believe every human being is creative. So my teaching approach is grounded in giving you on a strong foundation cultivating the mindset needed to fully and freely engage in the creative process holistically, from knowledge and skill, to mind and heart.

  • This means, you’ll be focusing on your experiences and meditating on the meaning, themes, and connections.
  • It’s more about the journey of creativity and not about the end output. 
  • This means perfectionism is not allowed here, and we will create a safe space for practicing and processing and getting messy.
Who is facilitating this session? What are your credentials to handle this topic?

JUSTINE HWANG is a mental health advocate, certified facilitator, workshop coach, social impact calligrapher, with a Bachelor in Communication.

Rooted in her life experience as an Asian Canadian woman and multiple burnout survivor, Justine leads and shares honestly about the power of self awareness, community, and creativity in the healing journey.

With 20 years of experience in leadership and spiritual development, adult education, and communications, Justine crafts talks and facilitates workshop experiences that are supportive, engaging, and encouraging.

Her passion and skill is to create transformative experiences that empower people with practical tools on topics including mental health, burnout, soul care/self advocacy, values and purpose, racism from the inside out, and community building.

Does the cost of your workshops include supplies?

For online mindfulness and creative expression workshops, you will be given a list of suggested supplies to bring. Many will already exist in your house, without the need to make additional purchases (unless you want the excuse to, of course ;) )

For online technical workshops, you have two options:

  1. Provide your own supplies: You will receive a PDF of the course workbook and practice sheets to print out for the class. You will also receive a supply list to shop for your own supplies (or use your own existing supplies).
  2. Purchase a kit that will be mailed to you: The kit includes everything you need, including the course workbook, and pens.

For in person workshops, all supplies are provided.

Will there be a replay available?


  • Technical workshops will have a replay available.
  • Reflective and Expressive Lettering workshops will not be recorded in order to provide full safety and confidentiality for participants to share freely in the live experience. The main magic of these sessions is the connections that form with live interaction in community. So I encourage you to block of the time, make a date with yourself, add it to your calendar.
  • I may or may not decide to record for my own internal purposes of capturing the teaching segments. I will check in with the group at the beginning. Either way, there will not be a replay available. None of the participant dialogue will ever be shared in any way publicly or privately. I take confidentiality very seriously.
I really want to come but can't make the date. How often do you run your workshops?

Frequency: We typically run workshops every 2-3 months, but may consider doing them more frequently based on interest/demand. So the best thing to do is to pop us a quick message DM on Instagram or from my site here to let me know what topics you’re most interested in. Then join my email community for the latest workshop release dates.

Do you teach in person classes or online only? Where are you geographically located?

I teach online live, real time workshops. I currently do not offer on-demand pre-recorded videos, although that is in the works for the future. Let me know if you are interested in this option!

I’m based in beautiful Vancouver, BC, Canada, where I teach in person workshops but have been known to travel to do workshops in other cities, such as Toronto. Obviously this is currently on pause until further notice due to COVID-19 restrictions.

What's your Refund Policy?

For online workshops, refunds are available up to 10 days before the class date. You may also choose to defer your ticket to a future date, or transfer your ticket to a friend. Email your request and reason for refund to justine @ itjustflows.com or you may use the contact form on this site. 

For in person workshops, refunds are not available due to the nature of venue rentals and limited seats, however you may defer your ticket to a future workshop, or you may transfer your ticket to a friend. Email your request and reason for refund to justine @ itjustflows.com or you may use the contact form on this site.

For ALL workshops, if the workshop is cancelled by It Just Flows for any reason, including not reaching the minimum number of participants required to run it, you will have a choice of deferring your ticket to a future workshop, or receiving a full refund. 

Do you teach private workshops or lessons?

Yes, I love working with existing communities (staff team, bridal parties, group of friends for a holiday party, etc.) to create a workshop experience tailored to your group. Find out more on my private art party page here. >>