The Fear of Public Speaking and What It Really Boiled Down To

Self-love and self-approval instead of self-judgment. (Follow the link to find tools to get you there!)- www.theorganicsister.comI realized recently that I don’t get scared speaking anymore. Not when I’m interviewing someone big or important, nor when I’m teaching my essential oil workshops.

I used to get out of my mind scared: butterflies, tightness, heart racing, the constant urge to pee my pants (no joke), and crazy thoughts of all kind of madness that could ensue, which usually involved images of people with pitchforks.

But without all those emotions and thoughts getting in the way I’ve found I actually have a strength and passion for teaching, presenting, and speaking. (If you had asked me that five years ago I would swallowed my tongue just thinking about it.)

I’ve spoken to some pretty amazing people in my life, people I admire or had a mild crush on – Steven Tyler (!!), Ricki Lake, Dr. Peter Gray – all with various amounts of nerves and confidence leading up to the moment. Interestingly enough, in all those situations I was never nervous IN the situation, always before when I was still in my own head about it (or after when I climbed back in there).

Part of this shift just came down to doing the work to no longer see myself as “not good enough” and holding others as “better than me”. It doesn’t matter who I’m talking to, I feel at ease because I know I’m talking to a reflection of myself, another beautiful soul, a manifestation of something wonderful. The same as me, each person.

I assume good intent now, where before I assumed judgment preluding rejection. I now assume I’m talking to a friend, because truly, beneath it all, I am.

I wrote this on Facebook the other day:

It’s a big fucking Aha moment to realize that whether people love and approve of you actually comes down to a) whether they love and approve of themselves, and b) whether YOU love and approve of YOURSELF.

If you haven’t experienced that shift in perspective, try it on for size. Start loving yourself, start approving of what you do (and/or doing what you actually approve of), start telling the BS fear-mongering stories in your mind that you are, indeed, quite good enough and quite deserving. Start paying more attention to your thoughts than what you perceive to be someone else’s.

Watch how all your relationships change, starting with the one you have with yourself.

And I think that pretty much sums it up. When I chose to love and approve of myself, my relationship with myself and what I loved and did obviously changed. But it also gave way to so much more ease and fun to be discovered in my relationships with others.

Try it on for size:

Take a pause from caring about what the drama is saying (whether it’s the drama in our minds or the drama in our lives). Start focusing more on how well you’re loving and accepting yourself in each (easy or challenging) moment. Watch how it gradually changes every relationship you have.

My tools to do this consisted of the same ones I’m always harping on ;), the ones I love and share freely:

  • Essential oils that impact emotions, triggers and stress: Namely for me, it was bergamot for self-love and wild orange to release patterns of scarcity (fear of not enough-ness).
  • Digging Deep and the tools talked about within to overcome core beliefs, resistance, and fears. (This one can actually help you find the oils that will support you too by showing you those underlying needs/triggers.)

It boils down to this: Find your triggers. Find your tools. Use them consistently. Constantly. Watch your life evolve.

10 Songs I Can’t Get Enough Of

I’m not all serious and deep, you know. Actually lately, I’ve been mostly irreverent and marauding. Right now I’ve got this tiny little love affair happening with something called a “flow wand”. I’ll let you Google it. It’s magical. Literally. Almost.

Anytime I’m “flow wandering” I simply must have music going. Without music you have no flow. Kinda like life. I’ve been asked by several people lately what I’ve been listening to and where I find new music, so I thought, “Hey, I’m way behind in blogging. I could totally do a blog post on this.” Thus here we are. 🙂

FYI, I tend to find songs I love on Pandora. (If you’re not familiar with it, you can type in a song you’ve heard somewhere – I catch some of the lyrics and Google them to find the name – to create a “station” that plays similar songs. It’s fascinating.) My favorite stations are usually based on bands; here’s what I listen to most:

  • Edwards Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes
  • Florence + the Machine
  • Avicii
  • Skrillex (yes, I’m over 21 – I just can’t help it, it makes for good “wandering”!)
  • OneRepublic

Here’s what I’m loving most….

OneRepublic – Counting Stars

Avicii – Wake Me Up

Avicci – Hey Brother

Avicii – Levels

Are you noticing any trends? 😉

Ellie Goulding – Burn

Bastille – Pompeii

Katy Perry – Roar

Yes, total crush on her and this song, especially.

Feist – Lonely Lonely

For when I’m winding down. 😉

Mountain Man – Play It Right

Lumineers – Stubborn Love

And just about anything else that comes from their mouths.

I hope you’re finding your flow these days too. ♥

21 Secrets Art Journaling Starts Tomorrow!

This is just a quick little note to let you know that the 21 Secrets Art Journaling workshop, facilitated by the lovely Connie Hozvicka of Dirty Footprints Studio is starting tomorrow, April 1st.

21 gorgeous art journalers (me included!) offering 21 different workshops.

I’ve seen the finished product and I can only say one thing: Yes please. 🙂

This is the 5th year of this workshop, which should tell you something of its awesomeness.

I’m still pretty flustered and honored and overwhelmed to be a part of this. And I’m looking forward to playing in it over the next several months.

Seriously just click this link and check it out.

(*Totally affiliate links! Thanks for the support!)

21 Secrets is Starting Soon!

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I have a habit of saying Yes before I have the opportunity to say No…I don’t mean this in a bad way, like saying yes to things I authentically don’t want to do. (I don’t do that shit.) I mean I say “Yes” to big things that I would otherwise talk myself out of if I “think about it” first.

Quite frankly, I had about a million reasons to say no to Connie when she asked me to be her Wild Card in this spring’s 21 Secrets crew. But I listened to my inner guidance that said “Hurry up and commit” and I went for it.

And it was a challenge. I played for months with exactly what I wanted to say and how I wanted to say it, especially since the whole topic was how to use art journaling when you’re in that place of processing and inner growth where words don’t come to you (even though you want them to). I got a little frustrated and I got a little overwhelmed. Then my iMovie decided to be a beyotch and mess up my first attempts and I spent a good day tempted to wallow in it all.

But then I decided that wasn’t helpful, chose to let those thoughts go (yes just like that; practice makes proficient), and instead reminded myself that I’m not meant to be or do or share anything other than what comes through when I sit down to play my part. So I sat down, rolled just the right reminders around my tongue a few times, and let it all pour out.

And it did, as it always does. The second attempt was better than the first, the words flowed easily, and I poured my heart and my own journaling process out in one take. I released all censorship and all self-judgment, and I shared what this gift has meant to me and exactly how I use it in conjunction with Digging Deep and my own spiritual evolution.

21 Secrets Art Journaling WorkshopBut the most beautiful part? How it fits in with the 20 other beautiful artists sharing their techniques, their passions, their secrets. I’m not an expert on How To’s and I can’t give guidance on techniques. But I know inner work like whoa and it felt good to let that compliment the beauty and skill the others are bringing to this paint-splattered table. And I do mean skill; I’ve gotten sneak peeks (from mandalas to self-portraits to symbolism!) and I have to say, I’m so looking forward to delving into this workshop with each of them. ♥

Interested in playing along? I’d love to invite you join us.
 
 
 

Introducing: The Library, A Conscious Living E-Bundle

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what if you had a magic bag for personal growth?

I’m talking about something you could reach your hand into and pull out just the right message and reminder that would guide you through the end of a bad week…

That would align your spirit with the Truth you carry in your heart…

That could serve as a quiet space to slip into with a cup o’ warmth and a blanket of self-love…

welcome to the library, my friend.

This is what I’ve found most helpful in my life. Having a stockpile of notes tucked into my pocket in the form of my favorite voices, resonating words, and helpful practices. I stick my well-loved audios on my iPhone and listen as I drive or clean. I delve into meaningful prompts before I start my day. I use them as my touchstone to keep me aligned with what I know is true but tend to forget when Life starts throwing ping pong balls at my face.

I created this e-bundle as a way to open up my digital vault and pour it all into one giant bag of mindful, conscious, heart-centered growth.

My intention is not to offer you a lot of information you’ll never fully tap into. My intention is to offer you nuggets o’ wisdom that you can pop on your smartphone, and listen to as you walk the dog or make breakfast or sit in traffic.

Reminders.

Of what you already know but have a tendency to need to hear again. Things you can use at a moments notice to help you navigate a bad mood, a curveball, a new phase.

New tools.

Of what you want to practice, want to do with your one wild and precious life, but in a way that first aligns you with your Center, then with your inner wisdom, and then with the clarity to move forward.

Does this sound like what you’re looking for?

50 pieces of support and wisdom, a $675 value…

Ebooks, audios, videos, workbooks….

Unlimited access, no expiration…

Download it all at once or piece-by-piece…

Click here to find out what’s within this bundle…

Heeding the Siren and Letting Everything Go (big changes for 2014)

We are not enlightened by what we speak, but rather what speaks to us. Yet we pass Truth around, instead of letting it pass through us. - Tara Wagner, www.theorganicsister.com

We are not enlightened by what we speak, but rather what speaks to us.
Yet we pass truth around, instead of letting it pass through us.

These were the words I wrote over a year ago, words that went ringing in my ears, setting into motion a train that’s only now pulling into station, that last sentence like the line of cars being pulled along, showing itself to me again and again.

I want to try – possibly unsuccessfully – to explain how it’s changed me and what that means for this space. Be patient, please…and be gentle…

——

We watch as wisdom flashes across our screen – a quote, a message, a reminder, a graphic – some ancient knowledge speaking to us, jolting us awake from our day-to-day shuffle, but we fail to let it permeate us, to sink in through muscle and bone, to the marrow of our soul, the space between our cells where transformation and Truth spring forward.

Instead we Share it, Like it, Pin it, and then move on without it. It doesn’t matter how deeply it moved us, doesn’t matter the goosebumps it brought us, or the lurch it spurred in us. The earth can move the seat beneath us, then be forgotten in three instants later as we continue to scroll down the page. I can even come across the same exact words, the same exact graphic, and not remember it had already spoken to me, rattled me, tried to awaken me. (I know this because of that handy little feature on Pinterest that says “Pssst! Looks like you already pinned this.” or when I recognize that what I’m looking at was actually shared from me in the first place.)

This is my sad reminder of a shallow distraction, when the scripture being written on my heart is so easily dropped into the file of no return.

Every day I’m so bombarded with so many of Just the Right Words that all they become are empty words, a passing thought, a glimpse of Truth, a mop passed ’round and around the puddle of Light, pointed out and handed off to one another to show our own enlightenment, but not truly lapped up by our own hands.

We are not enlightened by what we speak.

And so Life is not letting me do that anymore.

It’s not letting me skim across the pixels on a screen, trying to turn intangible into tangible, quickly distracted by the next dinging bell or onslaught of information. It’s not letting me pass around enlightenment without absorption. It’s not letting me speak too quickly, often times leaving me not speaking at all. (I’ve sat quietly in more situations in the past year than I have in a lifetime before.) I’m absorbing, absorbing, absorbing, opening every pore on my body in hopes that more will pervade.

I can hear the siren call. It’s saying to drop out, turn off, tune in. It’s saying things can’t go on the same, and can’t go back without facing certain death.

It’s saying spiritual suicide is committed when we don’t give ourselves completely to the lover gripping us at the waist.

I feel it when I sit down at my computer, like the hands of God being placed on my back, pushing me out of my chair the moment I lose myself to distraction, to the things that strip me of time, rather than strip me of my own Ego. I feel the pressure to go, move, get up, shut it off, step away, be done with, and I can’t ignore it. It’s become that train, first only echoing in the distance, but now rumbling so loudly in my chest that it can’t be disregarded, talked over, brushed aside. Instead it is stampeding through me, rattling my ribcage, demanding I take heed before it barrels me over.

This is what Life is saying to me…

Get up, get offline, get out.

The virtual handshake is no longer satisfying the need for a physical embrace. It’s not enough to see one another in avatars and condensed pixels and 140 character blurbs that have been repeatedly edited to portray just the right image. It’s not enough to know what you had for breakfast but not know the voice that’s sharing it.

I need touch, I need voice, I need face. I need to know what spills out of your mouth before you can backspace and try again. I need to see the flashing in your eyes that tells the rest of the story. I need to hold your hands and see us both get real with one another (and ourselves).

I don’t want to just listen to a woman on the phone; I want to take them in, seeing what Spirit shows and what they show, when we are face-to-face. I don’t want to only talk about essential oils; I want to drip them into hands, rub them into necks, anointing feet and Soul.

I don’t want to just work, lose myself in the paying of bills, or the marketing of products and services, and forget that none of this matters, that my only real job is to realize my own Self, to awaken to my own Consciousness, to see and experience Life with those I love and with that wide-awake presence I can’t find when I’m constantly distracted by the tiny computer in my pocket.

So, I’m taking the jump. I’m plunging off the high dive. Delving into the deepest of deep ends. Marrying my own Self-Realization, prioritizing my own spiritual practice, and allowing it to show me what gets to fall away.

And I can see glimpses of it already.

I’m already leaving my phone in the other room, on silent, at home.
I’m making the shift to a planner that feeds me, not just organizes me.

And now I see my mentoring hitting the pause button.
And I know the Organic Sisterhood is being retired.

I know that my time is being reallocated to make space for meditation every morning, and satsang 3 days out of every week, maybe four. For less Facebook, more dancing. Less marketing, more personal creativity. Less planning, more movement.

And I know that what is left after all this shakes out will be driven by something other than my Ego, other than my business plans and marketing goals, other than my own mind. (I’ve talked so long about “getting out of our head and into our hearts”; it’s only now that I’m seeing the ways in which I resisted doing that.)

Because I can’t anymore. I can’t ignore my own Dharma, the role Life wants me to play, the flow it’s asking me to relax back into, give into, allow. I can’t ignore that inner guidance saying it’s time to do more than pass Truth around, time to truly allow it to pass through me, to embody it, to spend more time living it, than teaching it.

And I don’t want to. (Ignore it, that is.)

Last year I learned how to surrender. Through fear, through trepidation, I gave in reluctantly, hesitantly. I trusted the process, but only through a lot of deep breaths and self-pep talks.

This year I’m not surrendering. I’m devouring. I have a hunger, a gnawing growl in my belly that is ready to rip through me with desire, that’s ready to consume and be consumed, whether it be professional suicide or not.

I know I’ll lose friends, lose some of you lovely readers, make some family uncomfortable, and maybe piss a few people off.

I’m sorry. I love you. And please understand me. There comes a point when you have no choice, when you’re willing to look crazy and disregard reason because you know, you know, you KNOW the Truth that sits at your side, holds your hand, and tells you it’s time. You know it like you know the face looking back from the mirror, because it’s your face, and it’s been looking at you all this time.

And it is time. Time for me to change what I do, or maybe just how I do it.

Dharma (my guiding word for 2014) is said to be a divine order, a natural flow to life, that gives us a role and a path, a job or a duty. I resisted those words, the connotation of force, of unwillingness, of obligation they seemed to smack of. I didn’t want a duty; I wanted only freedom. But that was a lens of fear and misunderstanding I was seeing through, and that lens is being shattered. Now I’m finding freedom in that flow, in the giving in to the path laid before me, into the blessing of it, the way it fits me so perfectly, comes together so easily, feels so right. (How could it not? I helped create it.)

This Dharma thing is speaking to me…

About making a community…
A home here in Florida…
About rooting down…
Spending my free time with my guys…
Helping Zeb prepare for the possibility of high school…
Helping him step out of his box and confront his fears…
About writing on paper – real paper – what’s written on my heart…
It’s speaking of a role, a duty I have to my Self first, and my guys next…
It’s telling me there is a time for everything, and that this time is for the here and now…
For real life friends, and bonfires on the beach, and paint under my fingernails…

I’m trying, I’m really trying to articulate this, but I promise you, no matter how much you think it’s making sense, my words aren’t conveying the deep and powerful message Life is laying down before me about where I need to be and why it’s all part of a perfect plan.

If there is one thing Life has given me this year, it was my own heart, wide open. It laid it’s strong and heavy hand against the marble I had built around me, and it slowly, gently wore it down, until what I thought was impenetrable became porous, became sandstone, became twigs and brush, became a mist of smoke, and it didn’t take a huff or a puff to blow my house of self-preservation to the ground.

With one soft and sweet and sexy breath upon my neck, my walls scattered and my heart was exposed.

I’ve experienced more joy, more laughter, more silliness, more delight, more hilarity, more dancing than I thought my boxed-in soul was capable of. Here I was thinking that “who I am” was embodied only in depth, the kind that manifests as reverence and seriousness, never recognizing that my true Self, once unlocked, extended into the depths of gratitude, magic, perfection, and bliss as well – that I had the capacity to see and enjoy both the revered and the ridiculousness of the Absolute. I’m overcome by emotion at the beauty of life, overwhelmed by the brilliance of the human condition. I’m moved to tears and laughter at this stage performance we all keep losing ourselves in. It’s so much more than I imagined.

(I know I’m not explaining this well. Profound Moves lose much in translation.)

Simply put, I’ve been transformed.

My own son hardly recognizes me anymore, and in the best of ways.

I feel my heart pounding its wild fists against my chest, stomping its wild feet in tune to its own wild dance, a declaration of its existence, a finding of freedom and trumpeting the song written across it, like a tiny Footloose playing out amongst my ribs. It manifests itself as silliness and joy and utter stupidity. And people I’ve known all along, including myself, are marveling at the woman they are only just now meeting.

I’ve sat with this story for months, just trying to hear it. Then more months, listening and relistening, interpreting, absorbing, and making sense of it. A year now of being spoken to of astronaut wisdom and forgetting cell phones

And then my Granny’s hands…her life, her love like the bushel that broke the camel’s back, shattering my illusions of what matters, what’s real, and what we’re here to do.

Life has been talking to me about Life, about living it, about wringing the juices out of it in real and tangible ways, about celebrating with our movements and our hands, about things we can touch, Truth we can’t skim and scroll past.

I thought I had done this as we’ve traveled for the past four years, but in Truth, as we explored the country our lives became less tangible, more online, and lacking in a quality that it needed. A depth and connection that goes missing when you drive by so quickly.

There no doubt in my mind that this year has changed my life. Took me places I never thought I wanted to go, exploding ideas into splinters of inconsequential particles that landed softly and dissolved before I even realized they were gone, and there I was…exposed.

The ship is going by a mighty engine, and you are busy rowing. - Mooji

I’ve thought long and hard about this choice to stop rowing, to let the mighty engine do what I can’t really stop anyway, until thinking no longer made sense and all that was left was the doing, the getting out of one’s own way, the admitting, the owning of not only what this girl’s gotta do, but who this girl has gotta be.

Yes, I could feel scared. I have bills to pay and there is still a habit of mind that asks how the hell it will come together, work out, fall into place. But that’s not a game I want to play with my mind anymore, not a place I have the desire to go any longer, and so I’m not. Just like that, I’m just not. Because I know that when I step into the flow, stop fighting the rapids, and allow Life to rush over me, it may not ever look the same, but it will never drown me, can’t drown me.

How can the ocean drown in itself?

So I don’t feel scared (okay, maybe a wee bit). Mostly, I feel excited. Ready. I feel as though I’m hitting a permission button on my heart, a process that has taken me 10,000 steps over 10 years (or lifetimes), something I thought I had done again and again already (and realize I might end up doing again and again later too).

Before, my heart, my spirituality came only after my practicality. But a wide awake heart has no patience for that. Not when it’s hungry to know itself. To know Life. To realize more and more of what’s beyond the makeup of the mind.

So this is my coming out…

I’m wildly in love with that place beyond. Head-over-heels for the mystical divinity within. I’m putting the “oooooo” in Woo-Woo, people. And I’m owning my joy, not just because it’s bubbling up and making itself impossible to hide anymore; I’m owning it because it’s just that freaking good.

It’s not going to change me; it already has. I’m just finally ready to admit it to all of you. I don’t want to just be “The Organic Sister” anymore, locked into something I feel I must maintain for good looks or sensible business strategies, for competitive edge or God knows what. I’d rather wipe the slate clean with my own admission, paint into it a new image (or no image at all), one guided by Buddhi, that inner wisdom that tells me how to align myself with Dharma, the right path; how to let go, let flow, and watch the magic taking place.

Is all of this making sense? Let me try to say it in simpler terms:

My heart has woken up, my spirit is the captain of this ship, my Ego is below deck, learning to take orders. This boat is heading in a new direction. Some things around here are disappearing, left at the horizon; some are just changing. Some things might just be getting my whole attention, and some may come back later, but some most certainly are not.

I’m closing the Organic Sisterhood, taking a break from mentoring, and allowing the rest to happen naturally.

You may not be a good fit anymore for the direction of this voyage, and I honor that, but not by dishonoring my Self.

I still love what I do, still love my oils and want to talk about them, still love my work and want to practice it, still believe in what I’ve created and want to share it.

But the How has become my Optimus Prime, reconstructing itself into something bigger and more imposing on my soul. It’s accepting no excuses, no distractions, no second chairs. It’s transpiring only as a result of inner guidance from now on. If it doesn’t come from the Universe, from my own heart center, if it doesn’t place my own spiritual practice front and center in my life, it’s just not happening.

I feel vulnerable putting this out there. I know the voices that can crop up, the criticism, the snide remarks, the fear, the judgment, the worry, the frustration. (I know it because I got to move through all of it myself to get to this place of peace.)

Please know I’m not totally abandoning this space. Please know I’m here to answer questions.

Please know I love you.

Please, if this change might affect you in any way, please sit with your questions and emotions for a moment, a day, a week, and then reach out to me with patience and an open heart. I’m here to talk with you.

And please, if you feel the draw, hang around. I don’t know what 2014 will look like around here but I’m excited to find out. ♥

 

Win a Copy of Digging Into 2014!

Digging Into 2014: Discvoering Your Guiding WordDo you know what’s not so awesome about Facebook? They have this fun little algorithm that makes it difficult for certain things to get SEEN. Case in point? My giveaway on Facebook has gone out to nearly 10,000 but has less traction than a photo of a Yoga snowflake. So thanks for that Facebook. 😉

Because of it, I extended the entry deadline, so more people who want a chance to win, can have it. #yay 🙂

What is Digging Into 2014?

  • It’s a process of tuning in to Spirit
  • Of NOT playing games with the Ego
  • To understand the past year, what it was for, what it was trying to teach you, so you can stop experiencing it again and again
  • And to create your world from your heart, not your head (cuz we all know how THAT turns out)

You can read all about it here.

And you can enter the drawing for a free copy here. (Ends Monday, Dec 16th!)

Let’s stop living the same year over and over, yes?

We’ve all had those years…

…the ones that seem to play on repeat…
…the ones that whoosh by before we’ve even had the opportunity to say “Happy New Year”…
…the ones that leave us dizzy, maybe disillusioned, almost always exhausted and disappointed…

Let’s break that cycle, shall we?

It’s not as hard as you think. In fact, Life tends to do most of the hard work. Your part of the deal?

listen in. create with intention. realign yourself. and then get out of your own way.

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Today I’m setting loose into the world a brand new e-guide: Digging Into 2014: Discovering Your Guiding Word.

The process is one of both closure for the path behind you, and guidance for the path ahead. It’s NOT like other ego-based processes out there where it’s all about “what you want to get out of life” and “let’s kick life’s butt to make it happen”. Those can be fun, but it’s not what I practice.

Digging Into 2014 is about helping you tap into what Life is wanting to offer you and helping you to work with it to co-create your world with trust and excitement.

It’s NOT about creating your life from your head, but recreating it from your heart, from your center, and a sense of Trust for the process of Life.

Piqued your interest? Click here to read more about it. 🙂

P.S. From now until Thursday you can enter to WIN a copy of Digging Into 2014! Click here for deets!
 
 

The only blog post in which I can talk about Rocky Horror Picture Show and the Ego in one breath (okay, maybe two)

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This little piece of fringe culture has been on my Bucket List for like, 87 years. Literally.

Or it was on my Bucket List. Because we went recently and it was beyond epic. We sat out in the cold. We threw rice. We yelled profanities. And Justin even did the Time Warp (happily he has no rhythm, which made it that much better).

This weekend I’m getting my nose re-pierced. Something I’ve been wanting to do for nearly a flipping decade since I took my last one out.

Next spring I’m doing something so beyond epic that it makes me giddy and terror-stricken 4 months in advance. (I’m going to fly a glider plane. Yes, Mom. A GLIDER plane!)

These are just a few of the 31 things I wanted to do in the past 49.5 weeks.

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 (The whole – mostly unfinished lol – list is here.)

Last year I would’ve felt pretty lame and frustrated that so few things have happened, and not at all in my timeline. But so much has changed within me this year, that it just makes sense that it’s all coming to fruition these past few months.

Looking back, I can see quite clearly that Life took my requests and said in reply, “Okay, here’s what we get to do to make these things happen.” And then it set this giant mousetrap contraption into motion that catalyzed a string of events that has lead us all to this place, this time, this state of being. And now it’s all starting to come to fruition. (And who knows, maybe it’ll even be finished by next year.)

I knew I was going to learn how to Surrender when that Guiding Word chose me last year.

I had no idea it would turn out this good. 

I had no idea it would feel this easy. (You know, 9 months later. Cuz it wasn’t easy last January.)

I had no idea Life would bring us to a new home. Bring me to a new community. Bring me a library card. 😉 Show me how to let those last shreds of fear go so that I could so completely love and accept myself, with all the weird and crazy things I want to do. Then introduce me to the people who would help me make them a reality. (Including a flight instructor, yo!)

I was talking over coffee with my local yogis about desires and the things we want, how sometimes our journey is to learn to let those things go, to practice non-attachment and release them in meditation. But how sometimes it’s just easier (and more fun!) to say “hell with it” and make them happen.

I’m doing a lot of that “making them happen” right now. But it’s different than ever before.

My goals and intentions and Guiding Words aren’t one big Ego trip now.

There’s no attachment to the outcome.

There’s no story of what they mean when they happen the way I plan or turn out radically different than I imagined.

They’re just things I’m having fun with. And if they go another way, I’m having fun in that direction too.

Looking back, I can see the practice it took to get to this point (while I remind myself I’m in no way “done”, nor should I resist moving past this point). It wasn’t like I could just have jumped into this (oh, I tried – talk about an Ego trip, just try “positively thinking” your way to enlightenment…no actually, don’t). I had to spend a lot of years in deconstruction mode.

But what I’m finding after all this deconstructing I’ve done in my own thoughts and beliefs is that the next step for me is NOT reconstruction…at least not from my mind. This feels a lot more like things are just doing their thing, building up around me, while I just watch and play. Nice for a change. 🙂

Self-Discovery Beyond Words: Art Journaling with the Pros

I really thought Connie might be crazy when she contacted me to join the 21 Secrets art journaling crew for 2014*. I mean, I’m not exactly well-versed or professional. I don’t know techniques, and I have no artistic tips to share. I’m not even consistent in my own practice.

And thankfully she wasn’t looking for that. 😉

Instead she invited me to be the “wild card”, to share my process, how I use art journaling as part of my Digging Deep, my spiritual inner work, and my processing of Life in general. And I said yes before I could say no, before the intimidation factor of working beside these beautiful women told me to crawl into a creative hole and die.

It was a beautiful step for me, owning that I am in fact an artist; that I do love to express our inner work through color and texture and images. And that is an artist: someone who looks to express [themselves, their perspective, others, the world] through art. Even if it’s only just for themselves.

So yeah, next year, 2014. An Art Journaling workshop. Me and 20 other gifted, talented, and amazing artists, including some of my most inspiring favorites.

21 Secrets Art Journaling Workshop

On Sale Now Collage

With me will be these amazing women:

  • Ardith Goodwin (The Illuminated Mushroom!)
  • DeAnne Olguin Williamson (Soulidarity)
  • Effy Wild (Effy’s Sweet Trash Art Journal)
  • Erin Faith Allen (Art Journaling The High Priestess)
  • Galia Alena (Claiming Our Mythos)
  • Jane Cunningham (Succor: Haven For Your Inner Child)
  • Jeanette House (Outside, Inside)
  • Jes Belkov Gordon (Color It Joyful!)
  • Juliana Coles (Setting the Stage: Internal Monologues With Extreme Visual Journaling)
  • Julie Gibbons (Psyche’s Tattoo Parlour)
  • Katie Kendrick (Signs and Symbols)
  • Lisa Cheney (The Savage Mirror)
  • Lisa Hofmann (Mandala Meditation and Play)
  • Lisa Sonora Beam (A New Chapter: Fearless Writing In Your Journal)
  • Liz Lamoreux (I Am…)
  • Natasha White (Fly Baby Fly!)
  • Petrea Hansen-Adamidis (Inner Art Expedition)
  • Rachel Ellen Andrews (Glorious Goddess)
  • Roxanne Evans Stout (There is a Place)
  • Tara Leaver (A Way With Words)
  • And little ol’ moi

Tara W Collage
I’ll be sharing a workshop called “Self-Discovery Beyond Words”:

“This is what I’ve learned: There comes a time when words fail. When what needs to be sought, discovered, and expressed in your soul is deeper than the mind can comprehend and well beyond the limitations of language. When there is so much needing to be let out but your mouth can’t form a single sentence, let alone the stories that need to be heard (by you as much as anyone else). As a writer and an inner poet, art journaling gave me the tools to continue my own self-discovery an Digging Deep when I ran out of words. Through color, and texture, and images I began to find, process, and understand the deeper experiences my heart needed to express. And as I began to get my hands messy, I began to find growth, healing, and transformation in new and powerful ways. Join me in a process of using art journaling for self-discovery and spiritual revolution, and learn how giving yourself permission to get messy can recreate your world.”

I can’t describe how excited I am to share this process that’s been percolating for months. I can’t explain how perfectly timed this opportunity was. I can’t fathom how incredible this workshop will be.

Please, please, please, go and read the descriptions and see the beautiful work of these incredible women. They are an a serious powerhouse of talent and inspiration. Not only am I honored to be among them, I’m excited to learn from them myself. ♥

*Totes an affiliate for this amazing workshop!