Embrace It.

IMG_2881.JPGI have had a hard time sleeping for the past couple of weeks and for anyone who knows me, or reads this blog,  that could sound like old news. But, it is actually new news! Instead of lying in bed full of what ifs and how is this going to work and the like,  it feels like an army of fireflies has invaded my body and is having a dance party while holding lit sparklers. I can feel the energy of possibility, adventure, change, and magic coursing through my veins and pulsing from brain to heart to gut. For the first time in a long time, I can see how A led to B and then to C and a new sense of clarity and purpose is taking hold.

While in the Advanced Course at MITT (mittraining.com), I committed to creating an integrated life. I came to realize how compartmentalized much of my thinking had become and how self limiting and sabotaging that was.  Instead of placing creativity  in one box, making a living in another, sense of community in that one over there, and love somewhere next to it, I want one big, full, integrated life which encompasses them all.

What do I do that brings me gratification and joy? What do I do when no one is paying me to do it, just because I want to? What do I love about my life right now and what do I want to change about it? Where do I see myself in one, five, or twenty years?

It is very easy for me to belittle the answers to these questions with a quick “well, doesn’t everyone do or want that?” or  “but, that’s just me messing around,” rather than realizing that not everyone loves taking photos and playing around with photo apps on their phone for hours, arranging beautiful spaces, writing about their experiences, thinking about what it means to be a human/spiritual being, sharing recipes, and trying to create beauty in the world on a daily basis. At times I think, “oh, but that’s all too random and I should focus on just one thing. What do photos, home decor, spirituality, food, and beauty have to do with each other?” Well, in my experience, everything! They make me happy to be alive. And, I know I am not alone.

For the first time, I feel clear that there is a reason I have the interests and passions I do and that they are not to be taken for granted, belittled, or ignored, but rather embraced, as yours are. They can and will benefit both myself and the world if I just let go of the need for it all to look a certain way and trust that by being my authentic self, I will create the integration, impact, and joy I desire. It is already happening.

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Just F***ing Own It!

IMG_2120.JPGOur deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others. -Marianne Williamson

I have always loved this quote and over the years I would read it, tape it to various bathroom mirrors, and re-read it.  But, it wasn’t until this past week, during the Advanced Course at MITT (mittraining.com), that I realized just how many years I have spent shrinking and hiding from my brilliance, creativity, beauty, courage, power, height, and worth, in some bizarre attempt to keep others from feeling insecure, but really because it scared the crap out of me. “Who am I to be so much?” I whispered.

I built a persona based not on shining authentically, but on being nice, responsible, not rocking the boat, and basically taking up as little space as possible, believing in some way that would benefit myself and others the most. The ironic part is that in trying so hard not to appear selfish and ego driven, I was exactly that, believing deep down that my loved ones, and the world,  were so little they wouldn’t be able to handle my biggest self. I didn’t think of it in those words but, same difference.  “I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable, ever, including myself, so we can all just survive, get through, wait, wish, and see what comes our way. It’ll be fine.”

But, I am done with fine.  I’m done with anything less than risky, courageous, vulnerable, joyful, fun, authentic, gigantic living. I, and everyone I know, happened to win the lottery in this go around at life and to then turn our backs on those gifts seems like a big, old slap in the Universe’s face.  What do you want to do? What makes you happy? Why aren’t you doing it? When did you stop doing it? What did you want to do when you were a child? It is possible to get back to when the answers felt clear and there was no hesitation when asked.

Yesterday, as I was driving home from LA, I heard the news that Prince had passed away.  Another authentic, creative, beautiful soul taken too early and all I could think was Thank You. Thank You for rocking us to our cores and for showing us how gigantic and fearless we are capable of being, before heading back to party in the stars.

Prince’s sudden passing was just one more reminder that life is short and oh, so precious.  I am committed to speaking up, showing up, playing big, and just f***ing owning my beauty, power, and worth as a leader. And, lucky you! You get to do the same, starting now.

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