Uncovering Your Purpose
I went off my regular schedule this summer by choice. No workshops, no program planning, no saying “yes” to extras. After 2 years of working to what I thought was my full potential, I needed time to rest, recharge, and reflect. Let me tell you, it wasn’t easy. Facing the shouting rumble of the gremlins, “why aren’t you doing anything right now?” and, “you could be being more productive!” is no fun. Yet, something in me was clear, I had to slow down in order to ultimately make larger strides.
There was a conscious decision to pull back in order to check the inventory of where I was allocating my time, energy, and passion. Refining is part of my life strategy. I am constantly editing. When things get too busy or life becomes too noisy, I have a harder time hearing my soul, a practice that is necessary to harmonize and grow the highly expressed, fully engaged, deeply felt, greatly connected, service-based big life of my dreams.
When I was finally able to get quiet, a quote from Glennon Doyle kept circling in my mind: “Find the things that break your heart and put your energy there.” Sometimes figuring out what breaks our hearts means slowing down, because connecting with our truth is a daily practice of listening in, not a muscle that we build overnight.
So, what strikes you?
I want to encourage you to pause and reflect on it. Give yourself time to register your heartbreak moments, to feel them as they happen, and to start a list. I also want to share my list with you. I hope it inspires you to write your own, so that you can streamline your energy, time, heart, and resources. Those parts of us that are too valuable to waste away.
My top three heartbreak moments right now, and what I’m actively doing about them:
Last month, Jamel Myles, a nine-year-old boy, took his life after being tormented by his classmates for being gay. (You can read more about his story here.) How is this happening in 2018, when a young boy summons the courage to share his truth? I strive to live in a world where we recognize what it takes to be ourselves, and where we don’t lose children – or adults – to xenophobia.
One element that breaks my heart about this is when people becoming small from shame. We all experience that in different ways. At times, I have been so worried about “fitting in” that I prioritized that over living closer to my heart.
I want to fight back against cruelty by starting a revolution of inclusion where we can experience the strength, courage, and value of being ourselves because that is really what the world needs.
Action Plan: I’m offering more workshops over the coming months to decode shame, to foster belonging, and build supportive communities so that we all may live our most brave and emboldened lives with an awesome cheering section. Participants will learn how to recognize these experiences and learn practical steps to empower themselves beyond fear. The greatest measure of impact is modelling it.
My feelings about this are best summed up by this video of a woman trying to get into Spanx!
Body love is a topic that many of us rumble with and can be immensely personal and painful to talk about. We're bombarded with messages telling us that we need to augment, purchase, and shrink into some standard of what is deemed “desirable” to feel as though we're “enough.” Over time we can adopt these messages as our own, ultimately hiding, judging and rejecting ourselves to cope. I am so sick of women (and some men) dismembering parts of themselves that they deem “acceptable” and “reject-able.” We have got to stop this!
Body love shows up in my own life in different ways. Coming back to the dating scene after years away, I was hyper aware of how my body had changed. So I did what I usually do, I set an intention to barrel right through these “limitations” and started exercising to get a six-pack. I increased the frequency of my workouts and mostly ate real food. Two years later, still no sign of that shredded stomach… but I’ve gained something more important to me: strength, endurance, and the awareness that body love has almost nothing to do with size and shape.
Action Plan: I’m partnering with Jodi Larry to run Daring Way™ workshops about healthy nutrition and body love. These workshops are about feeding our body with kindness, nutrition, and whole-hearted acceptance. There are only three spots left! Check it out here to register.
Also, I’m also going to keep wearing a bikini with my tummy pooch and cellulite that I’ve come to think of as charming.
Single Use Plastics
This one hits me daily. Straws, lids, takeout containers, they’re everywhere! I’ve been struck by the images of plastics in our oceans and waterways, like in this video, and how they’re killing off our ecosystems and tangling creatures that are simply trying to live in their own habitat. I want to do something about it, and that means changing my own habits.
Action Plan: Plastic awareness! Yesterday, for example, I ordered a delicious takeout salad from one of my favourite local places. But I don’t like that they serve it with a plastic lid, so I ordered it with a paper bag instead of the lid. A man behind me asked why I did that, and I responded with “plastic”. His eyes widened as his head nodded - his validation that we were speaking the same language. This is just one example of a shift in habit, but small shifts add up to big ones. All future workshops will now be held using entirely sustainable products.
My list will continue evolving and please feel free to share your own. Let's come together to make powerful shifts in our daily lives, in the service of our truth, our love, and our highest capacities.
In great light, connection, and health.
Yours truly, Sandra