I want to share a metaphor that helped me move from overwhelm to having a generative vision for the world that I wish to live in. At the bottom of this week's letter, I've included a visualization to help you experience the old-growth forest. My hope is that it supports you in moving from overwhelm to saying yes to what is yours to do.
To create something new, we need hope and a vision. While reading articles and literature written by Black American luminaries for one of my master’s courses, a theme emerged – racism is a problem for white people to solve. This came through over and over again, prompting me to consider what I might contribute to equity in the world.
It was in contemplation that I realized I did not have a vision for what an equitable, sustainable society would even look like. My life (like most everyone in western countries) is dependent on, and benefits from, the very structures that perpetuate (and...
What I hear a lot when it comes to addressing these larger catastrophes is, "I am one person and I can't do anything to change it." This often devolves into lots of news scrolling, overwhelm, hopelessness, and rumination. On the other hand, it can lead to willfully ignoring what is happening in the world because it's so painful.
I get it. I have been that woman.
However, today I want to offer a shift in perspective that I hope will lead to not only peace but putting your truth into action.
Are you ready? Here it is.
Scope is defined as the opportunity or possibility to do or deal with something.
In this instance, scope is knowing your limits, understanding your capabilities, and discerning what is yours to do.
The importance of scope was highlighted for me during the first research design project I undertook in grad school. One of the key principles of good project design is having a clearly defined scope....
Do you remember when you were a kid and you were missing a tooth and you just couldn't keep your tongue out of the space where the tooth once was, no matter how hard you tried to just leave it be?
Well, I have been prodded and nudged relentlessly by ideas and issues in that same way throughout my life -- my thoughts straying back over and over again to an idea that just would not leave me alone. Like the proverbial tongue probing the gum.
The ideas that nudge me endlessly are usually things that scare the living shit out of me: getting sober back in my 20's, having a child, training to become a coach, starting a coaching business, living in Africa, pursuing a master's degree in my 40's FFS... the list goes on. I've been resistant and argumentative with most of the big decisions I've made in my life but in the end, I've never been sorry when I've said yes to those persistent nudges.
I believe most, if not all of...
Merriam-webster tells me that the word abundance is in the top 1% of words that are searched. The official definition of abundance that Merriam-Webster gives us follows:
This word, this idea is the cornerstone of what the women I work with say they truly want.
An abundance of clients.
An abundance of clarity.
An abundance of love.
An abundance of experiences.
An abundance of money.
An abundance of safety.
An abundance of beauty.
In fact, take a moment right now (I'll wait, I promise) to write down what you want to experience in abundance.
Take a moment with your list - some of the items on your...
Scarcity is a profound and painful experience of lack. There are people everywhere who experience the desperation of real scarcity - a lack of food, water, safety, infrastructure, money, health care, education, support, encouragement - you name it, it is possible to experience scarcity in almost any way. Having lived in Zambia and traveled throughout Africa, scarcity of material resources is evident everywhere you look. Though there are (too many) people who experience real scarcity in the United States, far more people have ample resources who still feel the painful clutch of scarcity. How can that be?
The scarcity wound refers to an inner experience of scarcity in the present moment that is based primarily on past personal, familial, and societal experiences and/or narratives. In other words, the scarcity wound leads to suffering in the present moment that isn't based on the current reality. Make no mistake, this fear...
At the same time, the general insistence (especially in the spiritual, healing, and personal development realm) that personal challenge = being stuck in a story is frankly, complete bullshit. It draws the attention away from what is truly being offered to you via your experience and instead, adds insult to injury via the subtle judgment that you are “stuck in a story”.
Seriously, though — isn’t it interesting that we never consider ourselves to be “stuck in a story” if it makes us feel good? If it bolsters our sense of confidence? If it brings us a sense of clarity about who we are and how the world works?
You can try and gloss over, ignore, or positive affirmation your way past the very real conditions of life that create confusion, uncertainty, and hurts of the present and the past all day long but stories: our individual and collective stories (and the sorrow, grief, anger, fear, shame, and guilt that...
I care about the human experience of trauma. Having been diagnosed with PTS (post-traumatic stress) in my late 20's, I am deeply aware that true healing is about recovering our innate wholeness and reclaiming a sense of joy, aliveness, and connecting to self and others in meaningful ways. I am committed to this work because trauma is a human experience that we will be in relation to for the rest of our lives -- life is filled with challenges, difficulties, and stresses. Just as it is filled with beauty, joy, and delight. To understand trauma is to embrace the fullness of our human experience: both the fragility of our body psyche and the incredible resilience.
We are taught that trauma is an event or a circumstance that is disturbing and overwhelming (see dictionary). This is a gross simplification of the truth of what trauma is, and how it impacts the body and therefore, the way we live. Not only is this a simplification, but it might incline you to dismiss...
I worked in a bank in my early 20's. Believe me, when you count bills all day and your fingers turn black from the counting, stacking and wrapping of different denominations of money, that is the experience of money. Dirty paper.
But if it were just dirty paper, it wouldn't take so much of our time and attention.
Money IS dirty paper. And it's also so much more.
Money is a construct, a tool - something that we collectively created and continue to agree to use. It is a testament to human ingenuity and creativity. Money is symbolic. But of what? What does money symbolize?
Money is an expression of nature. A symbol that we created (out of nature herself, I might add) to serve growing economies and populations - for ease of transportation, trade, and use. Collectively, we've mostly forgotten what money represents.
Take a $50.00 dollar bill. This $50.00 bill can transform...
However, early on, we are indoctrinated into ideas about worthiness that lead us to believe that worth is to be found outside of ourselves -- in how we are perceived and received by those around us: another’s assessment or gaze or our monetary value or the work we do or our beauty.
Consider gender bias, not to mention racial and sexual bias — consider all the ways society narrowly defines who and what is worthy or most often, unworthy. Then there are the insidious ideas and lived experiences of needing to “earn” your keep, needing to perform, being expected to be pleasing (or not), or to be quiet, having your ideas dismissed, diminished, or worse, stolen. And the hits keep rolling, don't they?
Let's not forget the ever-present societal focus on beauty: body shape, size, and image, looks, and fashion that keep many women from the very real work of...
Here's the kind of stuff I heard growing up (and stuff a lot of my clients heard, too)... Either you are successful or you are a failure. You are either rich or you are poor. You do it right or you do it wrong. Either you have enough or you don't. You are happy or you are sad. You are worthy or you are not.
Scarcity is a choice-less, contracted state. In scarcity, you cling to whatever perceived goodness is available, desperately hoping it won't change or go away. In scarcity, you desperately fight against what feels challenging - paralyzed by the fear that you may never have what you want.
Scarcity is rigid and brittle. Feeling like a victim yet trying desperately to control the outcome. You can be sure that if you are using words like either/or, black and white, all or nothing, I can't, or I have to - you are in the grip of scarcity mentally, emotionally, and energetically.
Let's shake that off.
I am dedicated to supporting you as you come into right relationship with money, heal the scarcity wound, and claim peace, power, and freedom. I can't wait to see what you do, sister!
Your time is now. Let's do this.