Feel resilient, inspired, purposeful & connected in turbulent times

Wish Tree exists because of our commitment to wholeness. Whole humans, whole communities, whole organisations, whole ecosystems. A whole world.

Wish Tree is a social enterprise that nurtures changemakers everywhere to strengthen their self-leadership capacity so that they can create conditions for thriving, even when the going gets tough.

We believe in self-leadership as an ongoing, collective process that has the power and potential to move us into a more resilient, connected, inspired and purposeful way of holding, activating, making, creating change on the planet in these turbulent and extraordinary times.

We gather changemakers from all walks of life to heal deeply, learn soulfully and grow collaboratively in immersions, courses, circles, 1-2-1 coaching, partnerships and free resources.

Our 4-pillar self-leadership model is based on the concept of wholeness and underpins everything we offer.

Wish Tree was founded by Emily Johnsson in 2011.

Back then we were leading edge transformers in the Arts & Cultural Sector in the U.K & across Scandinavia, on a mission to make the sector more equitable, relevant and participatory in decision making, leadership and design. From deep listening to and with marginalised community groups, children, young people and educators, to advisory roles, delivering keynotes, broad-scale immersive training opportunities, reports and publications, we sought to implement many aspects of what we today know as regenerative consciousness, including working with root causes and the notion of a paradigm shift in how organisations operate and release potential.

In 2016 the Wish Tree Academy opened its doors to space-holders, wellbeing start-ups, creative solopreneurs & changemaker entrepreneurs.

The smash-hit online programme The Workshop Blueprint (2016-2019) supported coaches, healers and consultants to create, launch and deliver signature transformational in-person workshops, was followed by Get Trued Up (2018-2020) – an immersive self-leadership journey focusing on uncovering and aligning the deeper aspects of ‘why, who, what and how’ of purpose-driven, heart-led businesses, and embracing a greater sense of wholeness in the process. The self-study course I Receive (2019-2021) sought to encourage changemakers to say yes to receiving life’s abundance more deeply, and the creative communication, storytelling & marketing course I see you, I share me (2020-2021) provided perspectives and tools to learn how to share vulnerably from the heart, and create emotional intimacy in their community weaving. A yearlong conscious entrepreneurship journey for space-holders and facilitators including 3 annual in-person retreats, was offered as part of the Wish Tree Academy Mastermind (2018-2021).

Between 2017-2021, Wish Tree facilitated the global online changemaker community Time to Shine, which offered an abundance of live-streamed sessions, ongoing nurturing & caring peer support - all with the intention of nourishing a sense of belonging.

Sessions were centered around embracing our authentic self-leadership, including cultivating the courage to share our unique gifts and medicine with the world. Topics included everything from core aspects of conscious entrepreneurship, healing co-dependency, creating signature offerings, embodying mature masculine and feminine qualities, setting healthy boundaries, wounded changemaker archetypes, working in right relation, racial justice, spiritual bypassing, reclaiming resilience and much more. 

The Roots 4 Change journey was born in 2021 and invites changemakers to nurture a healthy and strong inner root system for the times we live in.

Working with the wisdom and folklore of 6 powerful trees, and that of key changemakers from across the world, Roots 4 Change invites us to embody who and how we want to show up and how we want to contribute here now, for us all and planet.

Every year, Wish Tree holds space for the Becoming a Good Ancestor Wholeness Immersion, based on Layla F Saad’s transformational work ‘Me & White Supremacy’. This is deep, necessary, and confronting work specifically designed for anyone who holds white privilege and is serious about the statement ‘change begins with me’, their de-colonial journey and showing up in right relation in our human family. Learn more here.

We collaborate and work in partnership with changemaker organisations and businesses on projects that seek to create meaningful, impactful shifts in the world.

Since November 2022 Wish Tree is working closely with regenerative pioneer and global changemaker Laura Storm and Regenerators Academy, where Emily is the Community Nurturer and support- facilitator of the annual year-long Regenerative Leadership Journey, welcoming around 300 participants from across the globe every year. Emily was a participant on the Leadership Journey in 2022. Emily also works behind the scenes to nourish the carrying capacity of the Regenerators Academy ecosystem and wider community building processes. Check out the 2024 Leadership journey here.

Meet Emily, Wish Tree's Founder.

Emily is a creative thinker, deep feeler and nurturer of changemakers. In her work, she combines intuition and logic – head and heart – and synthesises perspectives from many strands of knowing. She draws upon her background in the history of ideas, learning research, psychosocial work, Arts & Culture, organisational development, transformational coaching, Nature-based spirituality, activism, authentic leadership and conscious entrepreneurship, weaving these threads with regenerative wisdom.

Emily believes in an equitable world where everyone thrives. She believes that courage, care for the whole and compassion are integral aspects of self-leadership with which to infuse every project, interaction and new pathway forward. 

Emily is an experienced space-holder who creates boundaried and brave spaces where visioning, accountability, refection, healing and embodiment is possible. Her heritage is Celtic and Scandinavian and she currently lives in the countryside of southern Sweden. She listens deeply to the wisdom of Nature and often plays with the symbolism and folklore of trees in her writings and offerings.

Emily holds a BSc in Science & Technology Studies from UCL, a MRes in Education & Social Sciences Research from King’s College London, a PGCERT in Leadership Coaching & Mentoring from the Institute of Education, London, and is trained in the Co-Active Coach Model with the Coaches Training Institute. She has also studied the History of Ideas at the University of Lund, Sweden, and is currently completing a Diploma in Global Leadership with The University for Peace, Costa Rica.

Wish Trees have existed for thousands of years across many cultures and traditions.

They are symbols of hope and peace – even life itself – and are places where we come to reflect, re-connect and honour what matters to us.

Wish Trees can feel like sanctuaries as they invite us to step out from the busyness of our everyday lives and into a space where we intentionally tune into to our inner knowing. It is here that we can begin to remember our innate wholeness and be guided on our journey of leading ourselves well.

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About Emily & White Supremacy

Emily is a space holder and self-leadership coach to changemakers. She has over 20 years experience in the field of human development, learning and growth, and leads the coaching and consultancy company Wish Tree since 2011. Her work centres around wholeness – whole humans, whole communities, whole organisations, whole ecosystems. A whole world. Her changemakership is therefore dedicated to clearing distortions and fragmentations that relate to our perceptions of separation.

Emily has been exposed to and ‘sat with’ systemic issues around race, racism, privilege and injustice her whole life. She was born in Camden, London, in the late 1970s to a Swedish immigrant single mum and spent her first formative years in a highly culturally and ethnically diverse setting. As a baby, Emily and her mum lived in a bedsit in a shared house with a Black British family. Her first memory of Father Christmas was of him as a Bangladeshi man. Emily’s mum worked with refugee families and in Children’s Homes in inner city London, and since she had no access to child care opportunities, Emily joined her at work. For a while, Emily had an older Black British foster sister called Debbie. She was very often the only white child in the community of children of which she was a part.

Emily moved to Sweden with her mum as a child and as a teenager became involved with, and led, antiracism youth work in her local town through her school and council-initiated networks in the 1990s.

Her mum, who was active in the peace-and- environmental movement and who had been involved as an ally in the civil rights movement in the US on her travels there, introduced her to Black feminist and activist writers such as Alice Walker, Toni Morrison and Audre Lord, and actively taught her about white privilege, white supremacy and the truth of colonialism. She was also taught about the importance of learning from Indigenous wisdom keepers in order to heal and evolve as humanity, and to (in those days) stop climate change.

In contrast, on her father’s side, Emily is of British Colonial descent. Emily’s grandmother was born in Zimbabwe to Scottish sheep-farmers. Her grandfather came from a poor English background but won a scholarship to Cambridge University to study law. As many young British men of his time who sought “adventure, a good job and travel”, Emily’s grandfather joined the colonial service in the final days of the British Empire, and served in several African countries as a high-ranking colonial officer. He spoke Zulu and Emily’s father spoke Swazi and Swahili before being sent to Britain as a child to attend boarding school, thousands of miles away from his parents.

Although Emily did not grow up with her father or his family, she eventually came to know them and have a relationship with them, which involved taking responsibility for understanding and healing her own familial and ancestral relationship to colonialism and white supremacy.

In this process, she came to see, feel and understand first hand and close up, the deeper psychological workings of the system of white supremacy, the colonial mind and its intimate links with narcissism, perfectionism, patriarchy and extractive economies and behaviours.

Between 2003-2015, Emily worked as a learning researcher and Access, Diversity and Inclusion enabler in the Arts & Cultural Sector, deeply rooted in the Convention of the Rights of the Child and the Human Rights Convention. She worked across the U.K and Scandinavia contributing to a number of large scale change projects, self-evaluation initiatives, conferences and trainings such as “Access for All”, “Inspiring Learning for All”, “Belonging – the Voices of London’s Refugees”, “The West Indian Front Room”, “Kultur och Fritid för Alla”, “Vidgat Deltagande”, “In this curriculum I don’t exist”, “In between two worlds – London teenagers’ ideas about Black History, Belonging and being British” to name a few. She worked with a wide range of marginalised communities as well as with leaders and directors holding white privilege, facilitating necessary and brave conversations challenging the status quo.

Emily has worked across many cultures and languages around the world from Sri Lanka to South Africa, Costa Rica and India to Romania and Denmark, continuously reflecting on and challenging white saviour tendencies. In this process has come to observe how white supremacy and racism works differently in different countries depending on context and history.

In 2020, in the wake of the murder of George Floyd, Emily became a loud voice in the Wellness industry by calling in leaders bypassing white supremacy through ‘love and light’ rhetoric, exceptionalism, colourblindness and virtue signalling. She closed down several online coaching circles because white participants were unwilling to dive deeper into their own internalised white supremacy, and rendered the spaces not only additionally unsafe, but traumatising for BIPOC clients. Her platform and large facebook community for coaches and wellbeing facilitators centred BIWOC-led anti-racism conversations as a response.

Emily is a skilled and fiercely loving coach and space-holder with many years experience of creating safe spaces for accountability, healing, integration and growth to take place.

She is dedicated to her own ongoing learning, healing and unlearning of covert white supremacy. Examples of this are continuous learning from a wide range of anti-racism educators, authors and activists from around the world.

This bio has not been written with the intention of centring Emily in the context of Me & White Supremacy, but to transparently share about her background, values, skills and experience in order for you to make a conscious decision to choose her as a space-holder, or not.

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