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What Really Creates Marked Transformation

Five years ago, on April 11, 2013, my Mama transitioned out of this human life, and her death catalyzed a major transformation for me.

My relationship with my mother wasn’t always easy (are any Mother-Daughter relationships ever easy?), and the last few years of her life were especially difficult. With her declining health and her increasing dementia, and my role as her Medical Power of Attorney entrusted with making life-altering decisions for Mama, we completely switched roles.

All of this happened in my late forties, during a time when decades of negative patterns were coming to an explosive head. The tipping point didn’t come for another five months but it was set in motion in the weeks just before, and just after, her death.

On the morning after her funeral, I encountered my first eagle.

I was walking on my favorite trail along the river with my dog, Maverick, thinking about my grief, my anger, and the devastation of my life. We were about halfway back when I happened to look up, and there on a tree branch right next to the trail sat a huge eagle, looking out over the river. As Mav and I approached, it swiveled it’s head to look down at us briefly, then resumed it’s study of the river. Cautiously, I crept closer, until we were barely ten feet from the tree. Every so often, the eagle would swivel it’s head and look down at us again, then turn back to the river. We stood there for close to half an hour when finally, the eagle looked down at us once more, then rose into the air on a great flap of wings and soared out over the water and away.

At the time, I didn’t give the experience any special spiritual significance, yet I did make a strong emotional connection between it and my mother. Over the next few months, though, eagles showed up everywhere, especially when I was the most distraught, or when I had a major decision to make (and there were lots of them around that time).

One particularly memorable day, I was driving down a local road, crying as I listened to Carrie Underwood singing See You Again on the radio. I had left the house to escape yet another distressing conversation with my then-husband, and right that moment, I just wanted my Mama. And there they were: a pair of eagles soared over the trees and followed the roadway in front of my car for probably half a mile before they veered off and away again.

Another time, more than two years later, I had just made a difficult decision about a new relationship and I was out walking. And there they were again, soaring over the trees and following along the roadway for a while before heading off.

There are dozens of stories like these, and they continue to this day. There are other ways eagles have shown up, too: finding an eagle key chain in a purse given to me by someone else (they didn’t know it was there); having eagles prominently feature in a Reiki session and an Akashic Records reading; and often drawing the Eagle animal spirit card at decision-making times.

The eagle symbolizes Divine connection, and it symbolizes freedom, healing, and strength. For quite a while, I didn’t really get it; I just knew that when an eagle showed up, I felt comforted and reassured.

As I mentioned, the tipping point didn’t come for another five months. In between, my predominant emotion was anger. Intense, raging, furious anger. They say that anger is a common part of the grieving process, but the level I experienced went above and beyond classic grief: it was utter fury.

Some of it was directed at other people (not literally, but in my own thoughts): my father, my exes, and others. After all, when we’re able to blame others for what they did to us, we don’t have to accept responsibility for what we created.

In truth, though, most of it was directed at myself. And that was a key emotional shift for me.

I’d spent many decades seeing myself as a victim ~ as powerless and worthless.

While it’s true that some other people did some pretty awful things to me through the years, I allowed it because I didn’t believe I had any other choice. Even when I’d find the resolve to change something, I’d recreate the same pattern over and over again because I didn’t value myself, and I believed I deserved what I got.

When the tipping point came ~ after I found out my dog had terminal kidney cancer ~ I spiraled down into self-pity. I went from furiously angry to deep emptiness in a matter of days.

Up to that time, of necessity, I had been dealing with the aftermath of my mother’s death, the end of my marriage, moving, and lots of other things, so I hadn’t yet truly grieved all my losses…and I’d been too steeped in anger to get quiet enough to do it.

That emptiness felt a lot like depression, and perhaps that was a component of it. Yet, it was much more than that. It felt as if all the anger had been a months-long tantrum, discharging decades of negative energy.

Even though I had symptoms that are attributed to depression ~ I was exhausted, lethargic, had no joy in anything, didn’t do much beyond going through the motions of my day ~ I was also strangely calm.

Part of me didn’t want to do the work it would take to pull myself back up one more time; I’d done it a lot over the course of my life already. Another part of me was intrigued by the idea of what might fill that emptiness.

And, I was even more intrigued by the idea that maybe I could proactively empty out even more old stuff, that perhaps I had power over the situation.

I hadn’t yet made the leap from there to the idea that I could actively create what I wanted, but it was a short jump from one to the other soon after.

I began to purposefully look back at everything and intentionally choose to release it, simply deciding I was done with that particular pattern. I purged things in droves, both energetically and physically. The more I cleared, the more I wanted to clear.

The more I wanted to clear, the more I started to see the possibilities for what could be.

The more I could see the possibilities, the more I started to believe I had a choice.

The more I believed I had a choice, the more I began to actively set intentions.

The more I actively set intentions, the more the synchronicities happened.

By the first anniversary of my mother’s transition ~ and, ironically, the day my divorce became final ~ I was already living in a new location, planning a new business venture, and (unknown to me at the time) on the threshold of a completely different kind of relationship later in the year.

In those months, I made conscientious choices about what I wanted to carry forward into my new life and what I needed to release, literally and figuratively. Then, I intentionally cultivated what I wanted to create, physically and spiritually, and looked for the ways to harmonize the two into something new.

It’s easy when we’re suffering to want to throw everything away, yet we always have something of value to carry forward with us and carefully merge with the new to create a divine alchemy.

And that’s what it really takes to create marked transformation.

Those eagles showed up again and again to help me remember that we’re all Divine energy incarnated in human form, and that we have power over what we create. It all begins with emotional energy and beliefs.

I believe the Divine seeks to bring every one of us to our own tipping point ~ the point where we remember our divinity. I believe the circumstances that catalyze transformation can be small and large; when we miss the lesson in the small situations, they get bigger, until something finally gets our attention.

My mother’s death catalyzed things for me ~ in part because I realized what a restricted life she lived, and I want more for me, for my daughters, for my granddaughters, and for all women. At first it made me angry, for her and for myself, and then I understood that I have the opportunity to make things different, first for me, then for others.

If you’ve read this far, something has already catalyzed your own awakening to the possibility that things can be different; what’s your story?

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free.

 

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It’s Time for a New Paradigm of Women’s Wellness

There’s so much at stake for women right now.

It’s a critical time: we’ve been operating under systems that don’t serve our highest good for far too long and were suffering the effects in epidemic proportions.

It’s time for a new paradigm of women’s wellness – one that supports our total wellness; physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and financial. It’s time to step out of a masculine energy model that doesn’t support the natural ways of women, and into a feminine energy model that nourishes our whole being.

We all came here with infinite potential – a soul intention – and it got buried under layers of programming, false and limiting beliefs, traumatic experiences, unprocessed emotions, and cultural expectations.

We were born into a world that has operated under a masculine energy model for centuries. This isn’t about male versus female – this is about source energy.

Masculine energy is linear, penetrating, action-oriented, goal-aligned, competitive energy.

Feminine energy is receptive, nurturing, compassionate, creative, intuitive energy.

When women moved out into the world in a much greater way a few decades ago, of necessity, they stepped into operating under the masculine energy model: goal-focused doing and competition.

Our world is geared almost entirely toward masculine energy – competition in manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, medicine, insurance, finances, sports, media, politics, advertising, lifestyle and appearance – and it has worn women to a frazzle.

It’s lead to sexualizing, labeling, devaluing and disrespecting women, and to creating barriers between women.

We’ve been oppressed by masculine energy, we’ve repressed our trauma, emotions, and grief, and we’ve suppressed our genuine nature…

and it has embodied itself as chronic anxiety, depression, pain, illness, exhaustion and overwhelm.

It’s caused us to doubt our sanity, our worth…our very existence. It’s a paradigm that must change if women are going to get out from under the avalanche of chronic pain, chronic illness, chronic anxiety, depression, overwhelm and exhaustion that is paralyzing us.

 

I come from a generational line of women who’ve had a pattern of abusive relationships and chronic anxiety. My biological father was a very violent man, and I classically got into more than one abusive relationship myself.

Because of it, I suffered decades of chronic anxiety, depression and widespread body pain, along with a host of other dis-eases: migraines, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, irritable bowel syndrome, and endometriosis, to name a few.

I spent my teens rebelling, my 20s repressing, my 30s imploding, and my 40s healing – and that began first with Western medication and psychotherapy, and then became a personal investigative journey into wholly living that took place over the last 18 years.

It was a long and winding road – and I sabotaged myself more than once along the way. The summer I turned 50 began a whole new journey for me, a journey that’s moved from taking back my personal healing power to stepping into my calling and creating a movement of indomitable women.

In the years’ since, I’ve talked with hundreds of women – through surveys, in forums and Facebook groups, in podcast and summit interviews, in private calls; as I did, I began to see a pattern.

I discovered it wasn’t just me who had experienced trauma, anxiety, depression, loss, illness and dis-ease…

And it wasn’t just me who felt like an outsider, a misfit, like I’d made too many mistakes…

And it wasn’t just me who had come to a crossroads – to a decision point to live life differently, on my own terms.

As I’ve talked with women over the past couple of years, I’ve discovered there’s a common theme: they’ve all had a catalyzing incident that’s moved them to a tipping point. For some, it’s been a huge thing: a sudden tragedy or a cancer diagnosis. For others, it’s been a seemingly small thing: the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back – an everyday incident that caused them to say, Enough!

Whatever it was, it was the thing that made them choose a new path. And for virtually all of them, they had no idea at the outset what that path would be or where it would take them. They simply knew they couldn’t take any more of the way things were.

It begins with that first recognition of truth – the glimmer of an idea that there can be something beyond suffering, the inkling that you’re here for a larger purpose.

And that decision – that choice to allow yourself to change, to create something new, to step into your infinite potential lifts you to a positive emotional vibration right away.

And that gives you the first glimmer of power to create a new life.

The other common thread is that, somewhere along the healing journey, they’ve all discovered they’re here for a larger purpose, and that their life experiences have laid a foundation for them to help others in some way.

We’re gathering a community for this reason: to support women stepping into their personal power to heal, and to work together collectively to create a new paradigm of women’s wellness.

A paradigm that’s inclusive, collaborative, expansive, creative, intuitive, cooperative, and expressive.

A paradigm that gathers, nourishes and supports divine feminine healers.

A paradigm that breaks the bonds of the masculine energy model we’ve been chained to for way too long already.

A paradigm that deconstructs limiting beliefs and creates space for infinite possibility.

A paradigm that supports and allows individuality, uniqueness, and personal calling.

A paradigm that merges all our love, light and compassion with our strength, capability and endurance.

Can you feel the urgency to gather?

We’re out of time: we can no longer allow the old ways to continue.

It’s time for women to stand together and reclaim their feminine spiritual power.

Are you in?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

 

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Can You Heal Yourself?

Someone recently asked me this question: How did you heal?

It made me stop and think for a moment, because everything I write and teach is based on how I healed myself and my life, and I often share stories from my journey.

But I realized I’ve never put it all down in one place cohesively.

To answer the question, though, you first need to understand what I was healing from.

In my story, Finding My Voice, published in 2015 in the Kindle book, Unleash Your Inner Magnificence, I spoke of “being told to sit down and shut up from the time my biological father entered my life when I was 8” and that “for a little girl who was naturally chatty and imaginative – singing all the jingles to television commercials and creating elaborate make-believe games – it was a tough place to be.”

As it does for many women, my story begins way back in childhood. And, classically, from that starting point, I moved into relationships with emotionally unavailable, and some downright abusive, men.

Anxiety, lack of self-worth, codependency, and anger ran rampant. There was a lot of instability, uncertainty, fear, and financial distress, and often I was simply surviving.

And I was trying to raise 4 children throughout all of it, so ultimately there was the added component of guilt and sadness over what my kids went through.

I began to get sick not long after my son – my third child – was born, when I was just 24. I had a series of kidney infections and other ailments, then soon began to have the first signs of chronic pain.

Physically, I lived a pretty healthy lifestyle: I cooked from scratch using whole foods, I gardened and canned and baked my own bread, I made my own baby food and breastfed my children, I used mostly old-time (read: natural) cleaning methods.

But emotionally and energetically my life was toxic and that rapidly took its toll.

I spent my teens rebelling, my 20’s repressing, my 30’s imploding, and my 40’s healing. Now, I’m spending my 50’s sharing that healing.

In my late 20’s and early 30’s, I suffered from one syndrome after another: I had fibromyalgia, chronic depression and anxiety, migraines, endometriosis, irritable bowel syndrome, interstitial cystitis, panic attacks, PMDD, ovarian cysts, and much more.

Everyday life was a constant battle.

I reached the breaking point when I was 33, more mentally and emotionally than physically, though my body was a mess. This opened the door to a couple of years of tests, prescriptions, surgeries, specialists, and therapists. During that time, I made occasional forays into investigating alternative practices, but in the main, I went from doctor to doctor and medication to medication looking for the magic bullet.

In retrospect, the therapist was the only truly helpful part of that process, planting the seeds that ultimately taught me how to think differently about myself and my health. It wouldn’t really manifest for several more years, but the idea had been sown.

After a couple of years, I was tired of the never-ending chase for a treatment or medicine that would make things better. I set out to make radical change: I pursued alternative wellness techniques with a single-minded focus, everything from nutrition to spiritual practices, and my physical condition improved quite a bit.

I was writing a lot, sold a few articles, and was beginning to see the glimmer of an idea about helping other women heal.

Yet, something was still missing. My body was a lot better than it had been, but I was living by pretty tight parameters and restrictions in order to keep it that way.

More than that, my mental and emotional states were still pretty unhealthy – I was angry a lot of the time, still very anxious, and I felt very alone, isolated, and afraid most of the time.

In my mid-40’s, I made a decision that changed everything: I chose a relationship that was incredibly toxic and over the next couple of years my health declined rapidly. My pain returned with a vengeance and my anxiety was out of control.

When my whole life detonated in early 2013, I was 35 pounds overweight, yet was suffering terrible abdominal pain and not eating well; I was physically deconditioned, in chronic pain, and having chronic headaches; I was sleep deprived due to chronic pain and chronic worry; I was having panic attacks again; I had heart palpitations daily, and that turned into supraventricular tachycardia; I had a mass growing on my thyroid and wacky blood tests; I couldn’t concentrate, couldn’t make decisions, couldn’t think clearly, couldn’t shut off my churning monkey mind for even a minute; my skin was dry and irritated; I was jumpy and easily startled; my emotions were all over the place – from crying to angry in the blink of an eye.

I felt powerless, worthless, and anxious once again.

When I was barely coping, the relationship ended in a betrayal, and at the same time, my 82-year-old mother was hospitalized and it became necessary to make end-of-life decisions for her. All of this was happening during the last semester of my youngest child’s senior year of high school, so college planning and facing an empty nest were in the mix. And I was working 50+ hours a week at a stressful job I hated.

By that summer, I was too sick to work and too distraught to function much at all. I took a 3-month leave-of-absence from work and while I made some small efforts to improve my health, I was still largely focused on sorting out my psychosocial situation.

At the end of the leave-of-absence that fall – without much progress toward wellness – I was living alone in a small cabin with only my beloved dog, Maverick…and 18 days later, I found out he had inoperable kidney cancer.

It was the final straw – I railed at the Universe, wondering what I had done so wrong to deserve all this loss, pain and trauma. I’ve made plenty of mistakes and some bad decisions, but I’ve always had good intentions and I’m a loving and compassionate person, so it seemed very unfair…and a lot like punishment.

I spent quite a few weeks enmeshed in incredible anger and spiraling down into deeper depression and anxiety…and still worsening health.

I was grieving my mother, dealing with divorce proceedings and emotional fallout from the relationship, missing my children, dreading my dog’s impending death, and to top it off, the company I worked for was rapidly sending the work in my department offshore, so I was facing the potential loss of a job, too.

By the end of October that year, after two-plus months of distress, I had no energy left to be angry and anxious anymore.

And in that stillness, I began to hear everything my soul was trying to tell me.

The whole long, winding and arduous journey had been moving me toward healing – excruciatingly slowly – and now it was catalyzed, a straight shot into a breakthrough experience that has steadily expanded ever since.

So how did I heal?

It started by deciding I wasn’t going to look outside myself for healing, peace, and happiness anymore, and I made a commitment to trust myself.

I disconnected from everyone else’s opinions and turned inward for guidance. I began to align with my own intuitive healing messages.

I embraced the understanding that I didn’t “deserve” poor treatment nor was I being punished; instead realizing I’m here for a purpose and all of my experiences have informed that purpose and led me to the place of discovering it.

I let me grief emerge – not just the grief around the recent loss of my mother and all the other things, but the grief around ALL of my lifelong losses, starting with having to leave my Daddy just after my eighth birthday when my parents divorced; through leaving my new best friend and her family three years later when my mother built a new house in another town; through the loss of innocence, dreams, illusions, and expectations; through the loss of relationships; through the regrets (especially the desire to go back and do things differently for my children); through the deaths of family members and pets; and much, much more.

I allowed it all to come up – and I faced it all head on, processing piece by piece and recognizing what a HUGE grief burden was weighing me down.

I let my emotions emerge, too – and it wasn’t pretty for a while, but it was cathartic. If I needed to rant and rave and break stuff, I allowed myself to do it; if I needed to scream and cry, I let that happen, too.

I traced my beliefs to their origins and discovered all the family, social, and cultural programming that was operating in my life, and I cut my ties with any programming that didn’t reflect the truth of who I am.

Then, once it was all out of hiding, and I was done suppressing/repressing, I created releasing rituals to let it go, cutting my ties to all of it and releasing the bonds that had held me captive for decades.

Once I had cleared my mind and emotions – and my energy field – I had enough clarity of mind to begin to question what was next?

And I began to learn and experiment with creating and cultivating new habits – things that would fill me and my life with joy and peace.

I considered all the lessons I had learned, the talents and skills I had accumulated, and what came naturally to me. I knew clearly what I DIDN’T want in my life ever again, and that pointed directly to what I did want to bring into my life.

I began to align with my own healing power to bring that vision into reality.

I instituted excellent self-care to support my body, mind, spirit, and energy. I eliminated toxic habits, environmental toxins, and toxic people from my life. I went through all of my possessions, keeping only those that had practical use or sentimental meaning. I created an atmosphere of comfort and nurture in my personal space. I sought new connections, people, hobbies, experiences, and activities that were aligned with what I wanted to create.

I began to visualize the life I wanted, and I created and honed powerful intention-setting and manifesting rituals to bring it into existence.

I began to study and lean into my natural cycles and worked with them instead of against them, flowing with the seasons, cycles, and rhythms of my nature, and Mother Nature.

I began to break free from limiting beliefs, clearing them and replacing them with believing in my infinite potential.

I began to step through fear and into courage, “doing it afraid” when I needed to in order to make space for expansion.

I aligned my energy with the infinite potential of the universe, allowing co-creation and Divine timing to emerge.

I refused to allow anything into my life – person, possession or situation – that didn’t support my highest well-being.

I disconnected from attachment to outcomes – expectations – and began to allow acceptance to operate fully. I let go of rigidity and inflexibility in favor of taking inspired action.

I excavated my authentic self – who I came here to be – and began to pursue my calling in earnest.

I cultivated a much greater level of spiritual connection, moving past the lifelong limitations of my religious programming.

I actively sought a supportive tribe – from friends and family, to spiritual community, to business colleagues.

I embraced my uniqueness and stopped viewing myself as a misfit, and I stopped seeing everything as black and white/good or bad, and began to view everything as an opportunity: only asking the question, is this opportunity right for ME at this particular time?

I tuned in to the energy moving in my body and I began to make immediate decisions about everything based on that intuition, and I set in motion the first baby step to activate the decisions as quickly as possible.

It’s been more than 3 years now (at the time of writing this in 2016) since this huge transition began, and I’ve healed, grown, expanded, and continued to refine. I’ve come to realize healing keeps expanding as I continue the journey, reaching greater and greater levels of wellness.

I know with certainty that we have within us the power to heal (and to create a whole different life) and we can step into it at any time we chose. It’s making that first definitive decision to unequivocally trust yourself – perhaps telling yourself the truth for the very first time – that sets it all in motion.

I also know that once we do – and we invest ourselves fully in the process of healing – things begin to align, opportunities open up, expansion happens, awareness refines, and energy lifts to higher levels, raising our power exponentially.

If we can find the temerity to lift into courage and step through our fear, we can catalyze a whole new level of wellness for ourselves…and then we can support other women in catalyzing their own power to heal.

I believe women are being called together to collectively bring healing to humanity.

And it has to start with healing ourselves, and then with the willingness to share our stories to encourage other women in their healing journey.

Share your own insights about healing in the comments below!

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Do You Have Dorothy Syndrome?

As a young girl, my Mama was a movie buff. She was fascinated by the big screen and the larger-than-life actors and actresses of the 1930s and 1940s.

She attended the first screening of The Wizard of Oz at her local theater in Somerville, MA in 1939 and she told me the story many times.

Did you know that The Wizard of Oz was the first movie to introduce color? Mama vividly described what it was like to witness Dorothy stepping out of the house into Oz and having the formerly black and white world burst with color.

The memory gave her great joy to recall even into her eighties. Her eyes lit up every time she told the story, and color rose in her cheeks making her bloom with youth again for a moment.

It’s also one of the good memories from my childhood, the once-a-year showing of Oz on television and being allowed to stay up way past my bedtime, snuggled up with Mama watching the movie…and when I was old enough to understand it, seeing the joy on Mama’s face as the scene transitioned from black and white to color and she relived that happy moment of her own childhood once again.

Mama was nine when she first saw Oz, and not too long after that, she had a devastating experience that effectively ended the joy and innocence of her childhood. It altered her life forever.

Mama died when she was 82.

She had 3 daughters, 6 grandchildren, and 5 great-grandchildren. She owned her home. She had a modest amount of money saved. She was retired from a career in banking that she was very good at. Her health was excellent throughout most of her life until the final months. She carried her age well and most people thought she was a decade, or more, younger than she was. She was a trim and pretty lady. She was bright and capable – a number cruncher, a puzzle solver, an avid learner. She played piano quite well.

Hearing this, most people would say things like “she had a good life” or “she did well for herself” or “she had a long life.”

Here’s the thing, though: She never fully lived.

She was a hostage to her anxiety for more than seven decades.

And that stopped her from experiencing so many things, and from expanding into her full potential.

Mama was a depression-era child, and despite that, the first few years of her life were happy and safe and her natural sunny and inquisitive disposition shines through in early photographs. She and her mother lived alone – her father having disappeared while her mother was pregnant with her – and Mama often spoke of rocking with her mother, singing with her mother, and the safety she felt in those early years.

She attended a local parochial school where the nuns encouraged her piano skills to the point of helping her participate in local talent shows, getting her a piano of her own, and ultimately, a scholarship to the Boston Conservatory of Music.

Then, her father showed up and that altered the course of her life forever.

He was a violent alcoholic who frequently destroyed things in a rage – including her beloved piano.

And, even more heinous, one night when she was 11 years old, he assaulted her in an alley near their home and left her there broken, bruised, and bleeding.

She was hospitalized for 2 weeks while her body healed, but her mind and emotions never recovered from the trauma.

It was the beginning of a lifelong pattern of anxiety, of never feeling safe, of fearing men…and ultimately, the world.

It set the stage for compulsive behaviors and rigid habits, and the desperate need to try to control every aspect of her life.

It buried that naturally sunny and inquisitive little girl almost entirely.

Her bright mind couldn’t be buried, of course, but it was often consumed with worry and fear instead of her strengths in both intellectual pursuits and musical creativity.

She never did go to the Boston Conservatory; instead, she fled home at the age of 15 to marry a Navy seaman and escape her violent father – and still later to enter into a relationship with an abusive man.

She went on to raise three anxious daughters, and two of us raised our own anxious daughters, and one of my daughters is struggling with her daughter’s anxiety now.

Is it nature? Nurture?

I think it’s both simply because each of us in that generational line has been affected in different ways and in varying degrees, and we all play out our anxiety uniquely.

Some of us are more resilient than others, some more capable of pulling a façade around ourselves as Mama did and hiding it better, some have classically ended up in traumatic situations of their own, others have isolated themselves, and still others have managed to “keep up appearances” in a way that has limited their direct trauma a bit.

It’s also generational energy.

Women, as a gender group, carry the energetic memory of abuse toward all women, and we’re particularly affected by the energy of abuse in our own genetic line.

All of this is reinforced through social programming, media, advertising, family belief systems, and personal experiences – the sexualizing of women, the ongoing battles with gender role definitions, the images of the “perfect” ideal, everything from ongoing misogyny and male oppression to the more current mean-girl bullying among women.

And it’s raised to an exponential power at this time in the history of humanity because we live in an always-on, 24/7/365 culture, that’s plugged into a steady blast of information, with way too much private business publicly available.

Through media and technology, we are constantly exposed to unhealthy stereotypes, endless portrayals of “perfection”, and often, violence, bigotry, bias, fear-mongering, and sexism.

Women are more and more anxious all the time, and experiencing more disease and chronic pain than ever before. In many of the most common pain syndromes, women comprise three-fourths of the number who suffer…and the same goes for depression and anxiety.

All three are a vicious cycle, one leading to another and back again.

And it all begins with the anxiety we carry, formed from our generational energy, our personal experiences, and the programming and beliefs that are layered into our thinking.

Our pain is stored trauma, blocked energy, limiting beliefs, unprocessed emotions and ongoing mental chatter.

I’m not saying pain is imaginary: I’m saying our pain is the physical manifestation of a lifetime (and generations) of anxiety and trauma…another vicious cycle.

We experience something painful, and we stuff down the emotions. We don’t grieve when we need to. We tell ourselves the same negative things over and over. We follow the same worry tracks in our minds again and again. We hold onto limiting beliefs we’ve carried with us for years, sometimes lifelong.

We further complicate things by pushing ourselves too far and too hard, too often. We throw ourselves under the bus repeatedly and we skip our self-care habits. We compromise on sleep, nutrition, exercise, stress reduction, hydration, disconnection time, and tuning into ourselves.

Some of our pain stems from a physical happening – an accident, surgical complications, falling, etc.

And yet, many people experience these kinds of incidents and go on to recover fully (or almost fully) within a short period of time.

Are they just lucky?

No.

They have healthy mental and emotional habits. They practice good physical self-care. They don’t have limiting beliefs. They focus on their wellness.

I believe this is even true when the cause of someone’s pain is a physical condition that stems from neurological disease, genetic issues or trauma: while they still experience physical symptoms, they have a fulfilled life of purpose when they practice these same things.

It’s focusing on your wellness not your illness.

It’s prioritizing your well-being – your own healing – before you do anything else.

It’s looking for the internal answers and connecting to your own source of power.

It’s also having a tribe, a support system – having people in your life who understand you and contribute to your wellness.

Anxious people often isolate themselves. Some do it physically, living reclusive lives where they feel safest (though in reality, they’re still anxious). Others get out into the world, but have lots of “I can’t because” ways of excusing themselves from participation in things, and they are isolated within their minds, constantly chasing thoughts around and around, either never talking to anyone at all about them, or having a person they complain to, but nobody they can problem-solve with or get support and encouragement from.

These are the keys to healing.

And women are reaching a point of desperation and danger.

Anxiety, depression, disease and chronic pain are escalating every day among us and it’s getting out of control.

An avalanche is bearing down on our daughters and granddaughters.

We need to turn the tide…for our own healing and for future generations of women. We need to take back our power to heal.

So back to The Wizard of Oz…

Dorothy was a young woman from a loving home – although, it could be argued that there was a precipitating traumatic event in her life since she was being raised by her aunt and uncle – so that’s a lesson in itself: appearances can be deceiving, but that’s a topic for another day.

At any rate, when we first encounter Dorothy it’s clear she’s in a safe situation and she’s beloved by several people. So far, so good.

Then along comes the tornado…and Almira Gulch…and the salesman with the magic elixir – all outside forces for Dorothy to reckon with.

She’s betrayed by her aunt and uncle (or so it seems) and Mrs. Gulch takes her beloved dog. In anger and upset, she takes off from her place of safety. The tornado is already stirring. She encounters Professor Marvel and asks him for the answer to her problems. He gives her some mumbo-jumbo and sends her back to safety…

but it’s already too late for that and she ends up alone in the house, gets bonked on the head with a window and lifted into the eye of the tornado.

When she comes to, she’s very far from home and the first thing she discovers is that she’s killed the Wicked Witch of the East with her house and that the Wicked Witch of the West is none too happy about it…

and that she’s in a place  bursting with color and lush growth and interesting people.

As she’s getting her bearings, along comes Glinda, the Good Witch, who gives her the ruby slippers, some instructions, and sends her off down the Yellow Brick Road to find her way home.

Along the way, she encounters others who are having troubles of their own, and they form a team, all looking for the elusive Emerald City where they believe they will find all the answers they need and be given the item of power they all feel they lack – a brain, a heart, courage, and the way home.

After much trial and tribulation along the way – and darker powers trying to prevent their success – they arrive in Oz only to discover they can’t access the wizard, the source of power they’re seeking. More to-do and problem-solving, with a little sneakiness thrown in, and they gain access to the Wizard of Oz…

only to find he’s a showman, an illusionist, hiding behind a curtain using trickery and deceit as a false show of power…

but he’s a good-hearted man underneath it all (and he’s really just using superficial means of shoring up his own anxieties and self-esteem), so he offers Dorothy a ride back to Kansas in his hot air balloon.

Now, Dorothy is faced with a dilemma: leave her support system to go back to the safety of home (not even considering her house is actually in Oz with her – it’s the people she misses) or stay with her new support system of seekers and never go home again.

What to do, what to do…

Ultimately, as the Professor’s hot air balloon lifts off prematurely (as he begins to dump some of his own “weight” that’s holding him down), she’s forced to look within herself.

Glinda arrives and reminds her of the instructions, given way back at the beginning of the Yellow Brick Road, that all she needs to do if she wants to go home is click her heels three times and say “there’s no place like home.”

In finally doing so, she returns to herself, reclaiming her own power, and awakens in her own bed, in her home in Kansas, with everyone who loves her surrounding her.

So what does all this mean to you today?

You own the power to heal.

It’s inside of you, always with you, you just have to invoke it.

Reacting to emotions instead of responding to situations gets you into trouble, and looking outside yourself for magic elixirs or trying to access to someone else’s power is where all the complications come from.

Having a safe place to be is crucial, and having the support of others on the journey with you is super-important, but the power lies within you to effect your own healing.

Learning to seek that source first, to trust your own internal guidance system, to listen to your intuitive knowing is the first step in conquering your anxiety…

and when you can do that authentically, be willing to be vulnerable with your support system by sharing your experience and accepting their caring instead of looking to them for the answers. In doing so, you’ll be giving them a gift in return: when we share our pain and anxiety and what we learn along the way, we support collective healing because as we lift ourselves, we lift those around us.

Everyone with anxiety thinks those around them know something they don’t and have it more together: the truth is we all think nobody really understands and that we’re the only one going through whatever we’re facing, and in sharing, others gain insight and support for their own journey, so they can then look internally and begin to trust their own intuitive knowing.

It’s another kind of cycle, this one a healthy one.

Healing is tapping into your power and getting clear on what your instincts (and your body) tell you.

So I ask again: Do you have Dorothy Syndrome?

Are you going around and around in circles, pin-balling from one possible solution to another, battling through external problems ineffectively over and over, looking to others for answers, and seeking an external source of power to provide the magic answer?

If you are, I’d like to invite you to join me in an experiment: Put on your ruby slippers, tap your heels and turn your attention inward. Make the commitment to listening to your intuition and your body ONLY for the next 7 days AND do whatever it says, right away, without second-guessing, without “thinking it through,” without asking someone else what they think.

Don’t worry if you’re afraid – do it anyway. The Cowardly Lion did. So can you.

Let me know in the comments below what you discover about your internal guidance system, for it’s in sharing our collective wisdom that we all will heal. 

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Can You Turn Pain and Grief Into Healing?

Out of pain emerges passion…and passion heals.

I was participating in the My500Words Challenge a while back, and when I saw the writing prompt for day 5 I knew I had a story to tell.

It said: “Tell us about a day you will never forget.”

April 11, 2013.

The day my sister and I had the privilege of supporting our Sweet Mama as she let go of this life.

Mama’s health had been declining slowly for a couple of years, and the decline rapidly picked up its pace at the end of February that year.

We made the decision to bring her home on hospice at the end of March, so early that morning when I learned from the overnight nurse Mama had been agitated, spiked a fever, and had vital signs out of control, my sister and I were quickly at her side.

It happened rather abruptly; although she was on hospice, it was everyone’s expectation that she would linger a long time. We were both with her by 7:30, and she was gone at 9:37.

When we had been making our plans to bring her home, I advocated for a couple of things: The first was, as morbid as it sounds, we get her funeral arrangements made ahead of time. I believe it’s the wise thing to do when you can because it means you can focus on your grief, not details.

The second was that we keep Mama with us for a little while after her passing and prepare her for burial ourselves. We were blessed with a wonderful hospice team and funeral director. They honored our process in every way.

After the first shock of how fast it all happened settled a bit, we bathed her, anointed her body with Frankincense and other oils and dressed her again in her pretty bold purple satin pj’s. And, I was compelled to put her socks on because Mama ALWAYS wore her socks.

About halfway through this process, I felt my mother’s spirit moving out of her body, and clearly sensed her above me, looking down over my shoulder and watching us lovingly care for the body that birthed us.

Because our funeral home contact, Steve, is simply amazing, he allowed me to help load Mama onto the gurney for transport and let me be the one to zip the bag when I was ready.

I’ll tell you: zipping that bag over my Mama’s beloved face was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

Even though the writing prompt said a DAY I’ll never forget, it’s really about a series of days, so allow me some creative license here, please.

Our Mama was raised Catholic, and her parochial school education was a source of pride for her. Even though she wasn’t a practicing Catholic in her later adult life, we felt it was right to end her life with Catholic rites.

To that end, we decided against having a public “viewing” at the funeral home, but the wonderful Steve set up a private time for just my sister and I to spend some last quiet time with Mama after they had her readied.

Then, we had her funeral on April 16th.

My sister and I weren’t raised Catholic so navigating the liturgy was a little complicated.

We were supposed to jointly speak during the service. I ended up standing mute while my sister carried me through. It wasn’t my grief that stopped me; it was the tight parameters we were given about what we could and couldn’t say, and it all went against my truth, my experience, my reality of my mother.

The real part of the funeral experience for me was when our family followed the casket out and it was loaded into the hearse. It was a breaking point for me and my son was the one who carried me through that part.

Mama went back to the funeral home. We live in Maine so an April burial was out of the question. But I was dead set against her being embalmed, so Steve offered us options, one of which was taking her back out of her casket and storing her body until we could have a burial service.

I know a lot of people find that an awful thought. And I struggled a bit with the spiritual aspects of having funeral rites and then disturbing the casket. But for me, it was far more comforting to know her lifeblood wouldn’t be replaced by toxic chemicals, and that she would be under Steve’s watchful care during the waiting time.

That meant, of course, we had to open up the grief wounds again a month later when they were just forming their first tenuous webs.

We buried Mama on Mother’s Day weekend, on May 11th.

I DREADED the day, far and above how I had felt about the funeral.

Why? For as long as I can remember, whenever the fear of my mother dying popped into my head it was always accompanied by the image of a casket sitting over an open grave.

Now my nightmare was coming true.

I wasn’t even out of the car before my knees we buckling. It didn’t occur to me to not make a spectacle of myself: I was on my knees laying over Mama’s coffin in a heartbeat.

And my sisters and children surrounded me and just held on.

We got through the service, and again, Steve knew just what to do. He allowed me to stay until the bitter end, first letting me operate the lever that lowered the casket into the ground, then waiting while I hand shoveled the first bits of dirt in. And, he let me sit there while the cemetery workers finished the job.

I know all of this has been a graphic account of my mother’s death. And I’ll be honest and tell you I’m crying my eyes out writing it…and I know my sister is crying as she reads it…but this is the point.

In our culture, we’ve lost the wonderful traditions that allow us to grieve and heal. The lovely Jewish method of sitting Shiva is such a therapeutic process. So many other cultures handle death and grieving with much more grace.

We’ve been indoctrinated to believe we are supposed to suppress and repress our feelings, and this is so incredibly toxic to our wellness.

I love the Miranda Lambert song, Mama’s Broken Heart. It’s about a breakup, not death, but that’s grief of its own kind.

And, the satirical nature of the song, “gotta keep it together, even when you fall apart,” so aptly illustrates the foolishness of trying to suppress our grief, pain, and trauma.

I’m listening to it now as I write because it’s making me smile despite my tears.

And, because my Mama was a lady through and through, and all of the advice in Miranda’s song is EXACTLY what Mama would have said.

But, our Mama went to her grave carrying all her pain–and she had a great deal.

And, my sister was already carrying a tremendous pain burden when Mama died. That’s her story and I won’t tell it here, except to say I didn’t only advocate for doing the grieving process the way we did for my own sake: I did it for hers, too.

Her previous loss was sudden and tragic, and she didn’t get the option of doing some of these things to assist with her grief process. So, grieving Mama in a healing way began to heal many things…for both of us.

My advice?

Give yourself permission to grieve–anything and everything you need to–and let the healing begin.

It’s way past time for a cultural change: we need to grieve, we need to heal, and we need to express our emotions in a healthy way. Part of my passion and mission is advocating for deep, abiding healing for women and a redefinition of the cultural paradigm of female community support.

Getting it out into the world started when I finally let myself grieve all of my losses.

For now, what do you think about how we grieve in our culture and what needs to change? I’d love to hear your thought in the comment section below.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Ready to Release Your Self-Imposed Limitations?

April’s Stabilizing Six energy has its roots in 15 energy. Fifteen is created from the 10 and the 5 – both numbers of significant change and evolution (with the potential to get thrown backwards into old patterns). It’s the Spiritual Alchemist number that asks you to release the past and the ego.

In the Major Arcana of the Tarot, the 15 card is The Devil. This card is about recognizing self-deception and self-limiting behaviors. It’s the card that reminds us we always have a choice, even when external circumstances seem to be working against us: our choice is in our response to the situation.

Our default reactions are based in old emotional patterns and beliefs; we have the power to step out of those old habits and form new responses.

The traditional Rider-Waite card (on the right) depicts loose chains that we could easily slip out of if only we stop perceiving ourselves as powerless, limiting ourselves (and sometimes sabotaging ourselves) because we believe something has power over us.

In The Good Tarot deck, the card is called Temptation instead, and it’s all about attachment to things that don’t serve us well, yet we choose to stay bound by them.

The card that follows the 15 is The Tower – the card of epic shift in our lives. We can create the monumental change we seek through mastering the emotional shift from powerless to powerful, limited to limitless.

April’s energy gives us the chance to deeply assess our self-defeating behavior patterns, and to release longstanding limitations.

What limitations do you want to release this month? Share below!

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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How Planetary Retrogrades Help You Heal

Retrogrades get a bad rap. Especially Mercury Retrograde.

Today, we’re entering the first Mercury Retrograde of 2018 (there’s a second one at the end of July and a third in mid-November). The current retrograde lasts until April 15th.

When a planet stops its forward motion for a period of time, it’s said to be retrograde ~ moving backwards. It’s easy to see why that points our attention to past events.

Because every planet has its own energy, and it governs things related to that energy, each planetary retrograde affects us in a different way.

From a Universal perspective, Mercury is the planet that governs communication and commerce, as well as mechanical and technical things. Communication covers a lot of things: direct conversations; mail and email; texting; books, songs, movies, and television; advertising; social media; sales and marketing; sixth sense, energy, and intuition; human and Divine messages; body language and expressions; and much more.

When we’re in Mercury Retrograde, getting our point across successfully can sometimes be challenging (not to mention the troubles that often arise with computers, phones, printers, and other communication devices).

But, there’s another side to all of this, one that’ll help you heal some longstanding stuff and help you move forward, not only during the current Mercury Retrograde, but throughout the year as we move through other planetary retrogrades.

The symptoms of unease you’re experiencing right now have their energetic roots in past experiences, minor to major. The beliefs you hold today formed from those experiences, and they’ve been reinforced by thinking them for so long you’ve come to accept them as truth.

Those beliefs, along with their corresponding emotions, have created negative energy and formed blocks in the smooth flow of your energy processing system, leading to the symptoms of unease you’re experiencing in your life today.

Planetary retrogrades are an ideal time to finish old business once and for all. Energetically, they’re all about pausing, assessing what’s out of balance, and doing the necessary healing work in preparation to move forward from a healthier place.

They’re a time for shedding burdens that you’ve carried for far too long.

Beginning back on March 9th, we entered a season of multiple retrogrades that last right through into the first few days of 2019.

Because each planet governs something a little bit different, let’s take a look at each one means for you personally:

  1. Jupiter Retrograde (March 9 to July 10): Jupiter governs your personal growth and expansion, so in retrograde, it’s all about assessing and healing where you’ve been stuck in old patterns that keep you from moving forward toward creating the life you desire.
  2. Mercury Retrograde (March 22 to April 15): Mercury governs how you communicate with the world, so in retrograde, it’s all about recognizing your Truth, healing false beliefs, and gaining the confidence to communicate who you really are.
  3. Saturn Retrograde (April 17 to September 6): Saturn governs obstacles, limitations, and big life lessons, so in retrograde, it’s all about uncovering where you’re letting outside forces (people and circumstances) limit you and reclaiming your personal power to determine the scope of your life.
  4. Pluto Retrograde (April 22 to September 30): Pluto governs transformation, rebirth, and spirituality, so in retrograde, it’s all about understanding your own Big Why ~ your Purpose and soul-intention for this lifetime ~ so you can create a major shift into living the life you came to live.
  5. Neptune Retrograde (June 18 to November 24): Neptune governs dreams, deceptions, and psychism, so in retrograde, it’s all about looking under the surface to see beyond what the naked eye can see (and the logical mind can process) to better understand your illusions and self-deceptions (and the deceptions of others), allowing you to more fully tap into your spiritual gifts and expand your spiritual nature.
  6. Mars Retrograde (June 26 to August 27): Mars governs self-assertion, sexuality, and adventure, so in retrograde, it’s all about knowing what’s influencing your confidence, actions, and openness so you can do the things you want to do without stress, anxiety, or guilt.
  7. Uranus Retrograde (August 2 to January 6): Uranus governs individuality and change, so in retrograde, it’s all about knowing your true self and identifying what’s keeping you from expressing your uniqueness so you can create the change you’re seeking.
  8. Venus Retrograde (October 5 to November 16): Venus governs love, creativity, and beauty, so in retrograde, it’s all about knowing where you’re blocking your opportunities to receive love and create a nurturing environment so you can open the flow of receiving intangible abundance.

The energy of planetary retrogrades supports us in taking a final look back in order to finally put to rest the things that have prevented us from creating the change we desire, and when the planet returns to forward motion (goes direct), we’re energetically supported in doing the same.

In other words, we get unstuck…if we do the healing work we need to do during the retrograde period.

Right now, it’s a good time to consider how you’re communicating, and the best place to start is by looking at what you tell yourself. What beliefs do you hold, and what stories to you hold onto? What repetitive thoughts do you think? What do you say to yourself over and over? What do you tell others about you and your life repeatedly?

By looking closely at what you tell yourself every day, you’ll quickly begin to identify where you’re creating blocks and getting stuck. When you know, you can take steps to heal those false beliefs so you can move forward.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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How the Slow-Moving Planets are Giving You the Opportunity to Transform

Several of the planetary bodies that govern the various energies influencing our Universal cycles are quick moving. You already know that the sun changes Zodiac signs once a month, and that the moon moves through its phases about every 28 days. Some other planets – like Mars, Venus, and Mercury – move along pretty swiftly, too.

Others move much slower, some taking years to progress through a Zodiac sign, and even though the quick-moving planetary bodies affect us in swift day-to-day ways, it’s the slow-moving planetary bodies that have huge and lasting impact.

So let’s talk about what’s happening with some of the slower-moving planets right now.

Back on January 27, 2008 – right at the start of the last 9-year Universal cycle – Pluto entered Capricorn and it’ll stay there until January of 2024. When Pluto is transiting Capricorn, the energy affects foundational stuff like money, power, and independence. It’s a cycle of deep transformation on both personal and Universal levels.

Next, on March 11, 2011, Uranus entered Aries and it’ll stay there until March 7, 2019. When Uranus is transiting Aries, the energy affects how we express ourselves as individuals. It’s a cycle of radial shift in independence on both personal and Universal levels.

Then, on February 3. 2012 – in a 5 Universal year, the pivotal change year in the last 9-year Universal cycle – Neptune entered Pisces and it’ll stay there until 2026. When Neptune is transiting Pisces it’s at home – Neptune is the natural ruler of Pisces, so the energy is magnified. The energy affects major spiritual concepts like oneness, transcendence of the ego, and collective consciousness. It’s a cycle of connecting to one’s Higher Self and moving out of earth-bound limitations.

Finally, on May 9, 2017 – at the start of our new 9-year Universal cycle – the North Node (or True Node) entered Leo and it’ll stay there until early November. When the True Node is in Leo, the energy affects how we express ourselves as individuals, much like Uranus in Aries, particularly shifting us out of group-think mentality into thinking for ourselves. It’s a cycle of getting out of constant mental churning and learning to go with what your heart tells you.

With all of this going on under the surface of the faster-moving stuff, I think you can see why we’re in a time of such personal and global shift.

You’ll want to pay close attention to these four major influences as we progress through this 11 Gateway Year. They’ll be turbo-charging transformation opportunities Universally, and if any of them are particularly emphasized in your own Astro-Numerology profile, their influence will be intensified for you.

Share your insights and questions below!

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Are You Cracking Up?

Two years ago today I left the last pieces of my old life behind.

At the time, I was recently-divorced, living in a rented house on a 130-acre organic farm and recovering from the year from hell I’d had in 2013 – and working on manifesting who I wanted to become now that I had the opportunity to do it differently.

For 20 years I had worked in the medical transcription industry – all of it working from home, first as a self-employed contractor and later for a national company – and I by that time I was in Quality Control.

On September 12, 2014, my sister and I said goodbye to our Mama’s house as it was handed over to it’s new owners. (They turned out to be a lovely young family who appreciate Mama’s house so much, so I know she’s smiling down on them).

It was also the day I left my longstanding career behind to step into the role I’m here to fulfill: Bringing hope, help and healing to wounded women.

So many things catalyzed that change. At first, it was things outside my control – the death of my mother, the demise of my marriage, the emptying of my nest, the death of my dog. Then it became something I actively pursued.

But a whole lot of healing and understanding happened in between those two stages.

Earlier this summer, when I was going through another cycle of change, I went to the library to get some books. I was feeling uninspired, so I asked the librarian to recommend something: she gave me a book called The Last Time I Was Me, authored by Cathy Lamb. I’d never read her work before.

When I opened the book later that day and read the first few words, I about fell off my chair. I could easily have written the opening lines, and those lines set the stage for a story that aligns completely with what I’m doing in the world – both personally and professionally.

With Cathy’s gracious permission, I’m quoting those first words here:

“Women can look so innocent.

And a few of them might be. Innocent I mean.

Most aren’t.

Most have secrets. Pretty big ones, if I do say so myself.

They silently nurture raging passions they’ve smothered for years because life has insisted they do so. They hide who they truly are because they’re in a box and no one in their families would feel comfortable if they broke out of that box like a rose on speed. They think non-innocent thoughts like: Should I castrate my husband? Should I leave my family and pesky in-laws, head for Tahiti, and have a fling with a lifeguard while downing daiquiris?

Women can smile and be gracious and kind. And most women usually are. Gracious and kind, I mean.

But to assume that a woman, any woman, is completely innocent is to be completely naive.

For example, take my recent not-so-innocent nervous breakdown.

The breakdown happened to occur in front of eight-hundred-thirty-four advertising execs and their minions. All of whom think they are imminently cool and vitally necessary to the earth’s continual spinning around the sun.

As the creative director for a stratospherically successful advertising firm in Chicago I suppose you could say I went out in a big way.

My mother died two months before.

I had also found out that my longtime live-in boyfriend had not one current girlfriend on the side, but a small harem. This had prompted me to retaliate against him in a colorful and creative manner using, among other things, a hot-glue gun. The police were called, handcuffs were snapped, charges were filed, and now I had to be in court in a few months to fight assault charges. Plus, Jared Nunley, the boyfriend, who will heretofore be known as Slick Dick, was suing me for every nickel I had.

Me, and ex-soloist in my church choir, who sold the most cookies three years in a row in Girl Scouts, had charges filed against her for assault.

The truly bad thing about it was that my ex-husband had no lasting damage done to his body.

I had worked days and nights for a week for this particular presentation and Jessica, my insanely competitive twenty-three-year-old intern, kept implying that I was out of touch, with one of those saccharine sweet smiles you want to rip off people’s faces. I suddenly felt this insidious crack in my body breaking me open right up at the podium.”

~ from The Last Time I Was Me, by Cathy Lamb

 

It goes on to tell the story of a woman, Jeanne, ditching her entire life, heading into the unknown (in her case, literally, by getting in her car with a few possessions and driving until she decided to stop), doing some really hard healing work and finding her genuine self under all the debris of her life, and building a whole new and different kind of life where the ‘real her’ could find joy and thrive.

The events of early 2013 led to my own “not-so-innocent breakdown.” I ran away to hide in a small cabin in the woods that fall, leaving a lot of my possessions behind. I did the hard work of healing and excavating myself out from under a lifetime of pain and trauma.

When I left that cabin in April of 2014, just days before the first anniversary of my Mama’s death and the day of my final divorce hearing – and just a few days after euthanizing my dog when he began bleeding internally – I was on unsteady legs, but I was moving forward to a new life for myself and leaving what was left of the past behind.

By September, when Mama’s house sold and I left my 20-year career, I was physically, emotionally, spiritually and energetically aligned to manifest a whole new life…

and little did I know where it would take me!

Part of the process of choosing to step into expansion and create something new is allowing – the decision to let it be different. It’s creating space to make room for the new to expand and become what serves your highest good…

without trying to control how that happens.

I don’t mean sitting on your butt and passively waiting for something good to happen – taking inspired action toward your desires and goals is very important – but rather, setting your intentions around what you want to have come into your life and then getting out of the way of the divine by letting it happen in its own way, in its own time.

Allowing power to bring it into existence rather than trying to force it into existence. For a lot of us, that’s not an easy thing to do, and I had some bumps in the road when I was trying too hard to force things.

In the present, though, as it happened for Jeanne in The Last Time I Was Me, I ended up in a life that supports my well-being.

Over the course of the last couple of years, I’ve talked to hundreds of women about the adversities that women face, and I’ve discovered that Jeanne’s experience – and my own experience – isn’t uncommon. Women all over the place are cracking up – they’re breaking down, collapsing under the weight of expectations and demands, anxiety and grief, pain and illness, trauma and abuse, and trying to do it all.

And women everywhere are saying Enough! They’re committing to finding a healthier, saner, happier way of life.

On the Indomitable Women podcast, I interviewed women who’ve experienced exactly this same thing: coming to a tipping point – or a crisis point – in their lives and making a decision to do it differently, then finding creative ways to heal and thrive.

And then they’re stepping up to help other women find the way to heal, and to connect back to the natural ways of women that have been buried for so long in our masculine-energy oriented society.

The divine feminine is rising, and women are awakening and gathering. More and more women every day are done with living under a social and cultural model that doesn’t nourish women and doesn’t acknowledge the necessary balance of feminine energy we need.

In September of 2009, the Dalai Lama said: “The world will be saved by the Western woman.” When he made that statement, we were very early in the 9-year Universal Cycle that’s coming to a conclusion this year.

I believe the trend that’s happening now – women drawing the line and actively creating change, and then stepping out in their power to help other women – is the coalescence of the Dalai Lama’s prediction. It’s the rise of the divine feminine, and women are gathering together in powerful circles to bring back the natural ways of women.

And those natural ways are going to take center stage in the humanity shift that’s on the horizon.

As we close out the final days of this 9-year cycle and prepare for a new cycle to begin – a cycle that I believe is going to herald tremendous change for women – I’d like you to ask yourself a question:

Are you ready to create healing and manifest the life you’re dreaming of?

If you’ve been feeling like you’re cracking up – feeling a little bit like you’re going crazy, feeling powerless, feeling like you can’t take it another minute – you’re feeling the energy of the divine feminine rising, and you’re being called to step into your power and join the ranks of women who are awakening and gathering to help humanity heal.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about women “cracking up” in the comments below.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. – Be sure to check out Cathy Lamb’s books – I’ve read several more since and they’re all about women cracking up and finding themselves underneath. You can find her here: http://cathylamb.org/2016/07/that-mean-woman/ 

P.P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Do You Want It to Be Different?

Why do we, as women, often ignore our own best advice?

The advice we freely share with our friends, daughters, sisters, mothers, grandmothers, clients?

The advice we lovingly give because we want them to be healthy and well and happy and safe?

Because we feel guilty.

Guilty if we take time away from helping others to take care of ourselves. Guilty if we spend money on our own well-being. Guilty if we ask someone to help us. Guilty if we can’t maintain everything we’re juggling in its precarious balance. Guilty if we acknowledge we’re tired, or we’re sick.

Guilty if we can’t do it all, after all.

My Mama always said, “Listen to your body.” Yet, often, she ignored hers, to the point that for several months after my father had his first stroke she suffered with abdominal pain, loss of appetite, digestive distress and lost a significant amount of weight.

When she finally ended up in surgery for an entirely different matter – a hysterectomy following an abnormal Pap smear – they discovered her appendix was dangerously enlarged and were shocked it hadn’t ruptured, and that she’d made it so long in that condition.

Like mother, like daughter.

I’ve ignored my own distress over and over throughout my adult life. I did it in 2012 and landed myself in a heap of trouble medically in the summer of 2013.

I did a lot of hard work to heal, physically and emotionally, and for the last couple of years, I’ve been teaching women to put themselves first, to prioritize their own well-being, to listen to their bodies.

Guess what I’ve been doing?

Ignoring mine.

Shocking, right?

Not so much.

And I’ve landed myself in a whole heap of medical trouble again.

For close to three months, I hid my symptoms from my guy, my family, my friends, and just pushed along checking things off my personal and professional to-do lists.

It all came to a head a few weeks ago and I crashed down hard.

And even then I made excuses about why I didn’t need to go to the doctor, chiefly the huge expense (I have no medical insurance) followed closely by the business things I have worked hard to get lined up for August and September, things meant to up-level the work I’m doing.

And I was feeling guilty about how much headache this was going to cause for a bunch of people I care about.

When I finally went to my Naturopath, he sent me straight to the ER – do not pass go, do not collect $200, get your ass to the ER.

And when a Naturopath tells you that, it pretty much scares the hell out of you.

So I went.

As I sat there on the gurney telling the ER doc my story, he and the nurses were remarking about how stoic I am, how they couldn’t believe I’d made it this long without coming in.

I told them I get it from my Mama.

And I realized in that moment how much I pride myself on “being stoic.”

Seriously?

If I don’t cut the shit I’m going to “be stoic” right into an early grave.

After enduring weeks of debilitating abdominal pain, when the doc said, “Are you going to let me give you something for the pain?” my response was, “That would be fabulous.”

And when that morphine filtered through the IV into my bloodstream and I felt all the tension in my body just ebb away – emphasizing how much I’d been resisting the pain for ages – all I could think was, Holy fuck, what am I doing to myself?

And even then, I felt guilty.

I felt guilty for letting my daughters down because I’m going to have to push out the timeline on some business goals we’ve got.

I felt guilty for having to reschedule a podcast interview at the last minute.

I felt guilty for leaving someone I do some behind-the-scenes work for “hanging.”

I felt guilty that I wasn’t able to prepare a proposal for someone else in the timely manner I’d promised.

I felt guilty that I needed to ask for an editorial extension on an article I’d promised to submit.

I felt guilty that the house needed cleaning and the garden needed weeding because I hadn’t been able to manage much of anything for the last couple of weeks.

I felt guilty that I’d not been walking the dogs much because it was too painful.

I felt guilty because I’d allowed myself to get so sick that I was scaring the hell out of my family and friends.

Does any of this ring a bell?

I know I’m not the only woman who’s done this kind of thing.

Where are we going to draw the line?

Where am I going to draw the line?

My stated business purpose is to “bring hope, help and healing to wounded women.”

I further state, wherever I have a bio published, that “my life and my work serve the higher purpose of being a voice in the world to eliminate violence against women and to mitigate the effects of trauma in their lives.”

The tagline for Indomitable Women is Invoke the Power to Create Your Divine Life.

Is any of that what I’m doing while I’m all busy over here “being stoic” – e.g. being a hypocrite because I’m not doing myself what I’m telling every other woman to do?

I’ve spent way too much time being stoic.

I was stoic when I went to school with pain and bruises given to me by my violent father.

I was stoic when I had a raging kidney infection a few weeks after the birth of my third child, and I refused to be hospitalized because, even though they’d allow me to bring my nursing newborn, it meant I’d have to leave my 2- and 4-year-old daughters home with their alcoholic father.

I was stoic when, a few years later, I had an abnormal pregnancy during a very difficult time for my children and I ended up with emergency surgery for a ruptured ectopic pregnancy with 750mL of blood in my abdominal cavity (and I recall that doctor also expressing amazement that I’d made it as long as I had before coming to the hospital).

I was stoic some more when I had endometriosis all through my lower abdomen and I passed golf-ball sized clots when I had a period – at a time when my kids were struggling, my mother was having regular follow up for abnormal Pap smears, and there was a mountain of transcription to do and bills to pay – until my blood work was so dire I came close to needing a transfusion.

I was stoic some more when everything was falling apart around me in 2013 and I had unrelenting abdominal pain, migraines, a thyroid mass and wacky blood work – at a time when my Mama’s health was failing, my sister was struggling with tragedy, my youngest child was dealing with a whole bunch of ugliness and my then-husband was going off the deep end.

After that, and the hard, hard, hard work it took to heal once again – and deciding to make it my business to advocate for women’s wellness – I thought I was done with being stoic.

Yet, here I am again, facing this monkey on my back that I thought I’d thrown off.

So what is it? Am I addicted to stoicism?

I think I am.

I think a lot of us are.

I think it’s been imprinted in us from birth – to a greater or lesser degree – through family dynamics, social and cultural programming, generational chains, ancestry and so much more.

And I think I’m sick of it.

Something else was revealed to me during that ER visit – the something that I think is going to help me finally beat this habit.

When the registration person came in and asked the usual litany of questions about demographics and emergency contact info, she also asked this question: “Do you feel safe at home?”

And with a huge smile on my face, I unequivocally answered a resounding Yes!

You could have knocked me over with a feather right then (and not just because of the morphine!).

A few hours later, my guy and I were sitting there in a quiet moment and I told him why: I’ve answered that question – the do you feel safe at home question – many times in many doctor’s offices and hospitals and even therapists offices…

and I’ve lied through my teeth every damned time.

I’ve never felt safe at home.

And I really, truly do now.

His comment? “ I saw your face light up when she asked.”

In the weeks I’ve been taking some time off to heal, I’ve looked really deeply into all the things that are tied up in that for me, and how it relates to constantly making myself my very last priority.

And how stoicism – when you’ve been through trauma and deal with a lot of anxiety – is a natural reaction, a way of trying to control your circumstances and your fear.

It’s a mask, a facade.

And that is compounded by all the layers piled on us by social and cultural definitions – and media influence – about all the things we “should” be, “should” do, “should” look like, “should” act like.

We end up with one or more false personas – different masks – as we fulfill different roles in our lives, and relate to different people.

Eventually, we have no idea who we really are anymore.

And when we look around us and we see everyone else’s masks, we’re more confused and uncertain, because we measure ourselves against what we see, and it’s another facade, someone else’s mask.

I’m tired of maintaining my stoicism.

I’m tired of wearing a mask.

I’m tired of facades.

I’m tired of a world that promotes cookie-cutter sameness – robotic falseness – and predefined parameters about what anything or anyone “should” look or be like.

I’m tired of a business arena that constantly promotes magic bullets, quick fixes, and miracle cures – formulas and strategies that, if you just get on board with it, will suddenly make your life perfect.

I’ve always been unconventional, eccentric, different, rebellious…

and over and over again I’ve tried to fit myself into a mold, squeeze myself into a box of shoulds.

And I’m done.

It’s time to let it be different.

As this latest cycle in my life has played out – the repetition of a decades-long cycle – and I’ve looked back over the many times I’ve circled around to face the same demons again, I’ve realized how much I’m still trying to follow the “shoulds” of a lifetime, in my life and in my work.

I’ve been decorating a couple of pretty news masks – one for who I am in my current relationship, and one for who I am in my business – both things that have developed in tandem over the past couple of years.

And neither of them fully represent who I know I am, who I am when there’s nobody around but me…

because I’ve been afraid to show her.

When I was talking with a dear and trusted friend about all this recently, she reminded me that I don’t really do much of anything “by the book,” and she’s right.

So why the hell am I still trying to stuff myself into yet another box – a couple of boxes actually?

A lifetime of conditioning, of following old programming, default behaviors, and getting stuck in the ruts of the neural pathways long established in my brain.

So here’s what I’ve decided to do:

I’ve taken off the mask in my personal life, creating the resonance I need that reflects exactly who I am – and, oh, my poor guy, who’s over here kinda going, Wait! What?, but in true Tony fashion, is responding with, Whatever you need to do to be happy and healthy. (See why I could answer an unequivocal Yes! to being safe at home?)

Now I’m taking off the mask in my business life.

I had a well-organized “funnel” planned for the rest of this year, with all the “right” strategies and marketing methods built in. It included a to-do list with about 17,000 things on it that would make sure every “t” was crossed and every “i” was dotted. It was well thought out, shaping the knowledge and skills I have into an acceptable mainstream concept.

And I realized I loathe about 85% of what’s on that list and in that plan, and that it doesn’t reflect what I’m called to teach.

So, I got rid of that 85% and re-fashioned the remaining 15% to reflect my unique, quirky, rebellious, eccentric, eclectic self – and that 15% is all I’m going to teach.

I’m going to let it be different, in my life and in my work.

I’m leaving the old paradigms behind.

I’m going on an odyssey of discovery – to unmask the real me and invoke the power to be everything I came here to be.

And I’d like you to join me.

Because I know you’ve got some masks, too.

Because I know you’ve got areas of your life where you’re ready to let it be different, too.

Because, wherever you are in your own healing journey – just starting out, a long ways in, or already helping others heal – there’s always more to do as we uncover another layer.

Because women are being called to circle together and support each other, to break the culture of competition, to help each other heal.

Because you can’t manifest your power and create the transformation you so desperately desire until you clear space and allow it to be different.

Because you’re smart, and you know there’s no magic bullet…and you know, too, that there is hope, there is possibility, there is power, and you’ve begun to suspect that the power is within you.

There’s a powerful season just ahead of us, and it’s incredibly important for women to be tuned into the natural cycles happening throughout the year, so I’ve put together something to correspond with it.

And it’s going to be simple, and straightforward, no bullshit and no tactics.

It’s a place for women to explore how they can let it be different in their lives and connect with other women on the same journey.

It all starts with Truth – telling ourselves the truth and daring to take off our masks, in a safe and supportive place.

Will you join me?

I’d love to hear your thoughts about all of this in the comments below.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

 

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Is it really possible to become indomitable?

When you’ve been suffering for a while and your list of physical, mental, and emotional symptoms has grown long, it can seem overwhelming to think about all the things you’ll need to do to get beyond it…and yet, you want nothing more than to feel well again, to be happy again, to get back to being yourself again.

I’m not going to tell you that all you need to do is think positive, or that there is one simple thing you can do that will fix everything, or that there is a certain prescription that will make it all better, or that it’s all in your head and you just need to stop it.

It takes a long time to get so unwell that you chronically suffer from your pain, depression, anxiety, fatigue, and other symptoms: It stands to reason that it’ll take you some time to find your way back.

And I also know you just want to feel better now.

There was a point in my life when I dragged myself through every day: I had children to raise and a job to do, so it wasn’t optional. And in those days, I withdrew to my bed as often and as quickly as I could. I sought the comfort of prescribed painkillers and anxiety medications, and the blessed relief of sleep. When I was asleep, I didn’t have to deal with the pain, the depression, the anxiety, or the reasons for all of it.

I wasn’t living life: I was existing

I suffered, my family suffered, and on top of everything else, I felt so guilty. I wanted to get a handle on it…and every time I worked up the energy to think about what that meant, it was too exhausting and overwhelming to figure out. It was easier to just take a nap.

I was in my early 30s when I first sought medical/mental health assistance for things I had already lived with for many years. I followed that path for close to 6 years, having test after test, trying medication after medication, talking with different therapists, and pursuing treatment after treatment. Nothing really worked all that well. Sure, there were small gains sometimes, but they usually came with a price…or a side effect.

The therapist I was seeing when I was 39 was the portal to real and lasting change for me. She taught me to see myself differently, and that empowered me to start researching ways to own my healing and wellness that suited me and my lifestyle.

I gained tremendous ground over the next 5 years and I was the healthiest I’d been in decades, walking 4 to 5 miles a day, eating nutritiously and I was at a healthy body weight, doing yoga daily, working with horses 5 days a week, homeschooling my youngest child, and working on my writing.

When I was 44, I made a decision that changed all that: I entered into a toxic relationship, and over the next 4 years I lost myself and my health. The summer I turned 49 I was desperately ill, in chronic pain, depressed, anxious, and grieving.

Shortly after my birthday, my eldest daughter confronted me with the truth: She told me if I passively allowed the whole situation to continue I was going to die. She reminded me I knew what to do and I had to decide to do it if I wanted to live.

She was right.

I was so tired of all the battles that I was being passive. I didn’t think I had the strength or energy to pull myself up one more time. I was going to let things run their course and let myself fade away.

Once she had called me out on it, though, I found it harder and harder to stay passive. I did know exactly what I needed to do…but it was overwhelming as hell to think about doing it all. It required radical decisions, hard work, physical effort, mental schooling, and money…all of which were in short supply right then.

What changed?

I turned inward for a couple of weeks–not in the escaping reality way; rather, in the searching my soul way. And it was enough to get me moving and making some choices.

There were ups and downs, a lot of decisions to face, physical and emotional things to confront and solve, and grief to process, but about 4 months into the work, when the fog had cleared a bit, I finally realized all of what I’ve been through and overcome has aligned me with my purpose in life: to be a voice in the world to help eliminate violence against women and to help create a new paradigm for women’s wellness.

I said earlier I know you want to feel better now, and this story is about the time it takes to heal. Within it, though, is the key to feeling better now, before you begin to make the practical decisions and choices, and before you can create the wellness blueprint for your life.

It’s this: Changing your perception of your ability to heal, going from an I can’t to an I can attitude, and taking daily action to learn a personal wellness mindset.

It won’t solve everything all at once, but it will get you more than 50% of the way to wellness. As it’s said when someone is battling a substance abuse problem: ‘acknowledging they have a problem is half the battle.’ There’s work to do afterwards but it’s work from a place of truth and believing in the possibility of achieving wellness.

Same goes: When you believe you have the ability to heal and own your power – your personal wellness mindset – you’ve already won half the battle.

It’s the gateway to becoming an Indomitable Woman.

Who is an Indomitable Woman?

She’s the woman who has navigated the trials and traumas and stresses of life and keeps on going.

She’s the woman who has been knocked down and gotten back up…sometimes repeatedly.

She’s the woman who has been betrayed and dares to love anyway.

She’s the woman who puts it all on the line for her family.

She’s the woman who takes a step even when she’s terrified.

She’s the woman who looks for the lesson – the proverbial silver lining – in difficult circumstances.

She’s the woman who wields her strength with love and grace and compassion while standing firm in

her boundaries.

She’s the woman who practices great self-care habits to keep herself healthy and well – without

apology.

She’s the woman who knows her natural talents, capabilities and resources and uses them skillfully.

She’s the woman who supports and uplifts other women.

She’s the woman who is tapped into her intuition and flows with the cycles and seasons of life.

She’s the woman who hears the healing call and courageously steps into her healing power to answer.

So is it really possible to become indomitable?

I say it is. And I’ve met hundreds of women who exemplify being indomitable:

They’ve battled cancer and won.

They’ve left abusive relationships and thrived.

They’ve grieved loss and begun to live again.

They’ve fought social stigma and claimed their freedom.

They’ve struggled with body image and learned to love themselves.

They’ve been betrayed and gone on to love again.

They’ve contended with eating disorders and gotten healthy.

They’ve experienced every conceivable trauma that happens to women…and they’ve stepped into their healing power, healed themselves, and begun to help others heal.

I think it’s a natural outcome: don’t you? When we go through the fire, and we find our way out and create a new life for ourselves, we naturally want to pay that forward and help others.

I’d love to hear your thoughts about becoming indomitable – facing adversity, healing, thriving, and helping others heal. Let me know in the comments below!

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

 

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Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started a Virtual Business

World domination…7-figure income…50K raving followers

All of this can be yours if you follow (insert guru name here)’s easy formula!

Not quite

When I first left my 20-year career to start a virtual business, I allocated 6 months of time and financial resources to handle the steep learning curve of technology and marketing. I thought that was plenty of time…

Website? Check

Facebook Business Page? Check

Email provider? Check

Think that’s all there is to it? Think again…

  • What about landing pages and opt-ins?
  • And webinars?
  • And Google Analytics?
  • And Facebook ads?
  • And autoresponder sequences?
  • And membership management?
  • And course creation?
  • And telesummits?
  • And the list goes on…

It’s crazy-making, and little did I know (then) that the practical, tangible things aren’t the most important part anyway.

I’ve learned…

I’m very bright and I have a keen mind. I’m also highly intuitive. I write really well and I have the gift of gab. I love research, learning, solving puzzles, sorting out how pieces fit together. I’m very capable of figuring new things out.

Back in 1995, I didn’t want to leave my infant daughter to go back to my minimum-wage job as a bank teller so I bought a Stedman’s Medical Dictionary, taught myself how to do medical transcription, marketed myself to local physicians’ offices and got contracts to do their transcription – and that turned into a 20-year career.

When I made the decision to leave that career a few years ago and pursue a virtual business, I thought, ‘Oh, I’ve got this, this’ll be easy’ – and I did, at least as far as the research and learning and comprehension went – but that’s where it broke down because it’s not just about the knowledge and comprehension.

It’s about personal alignment and mindset and resilience. You have to be prepared to live in the role of entrepreneur – in whatever genuine form that takes for you – and that takes a whole different set of skills.

Especially if you have a healing message for the world.

Here’s what I’ve learned:

#1 – It’s crucial to get rid of your old programming before you begin

It’s going to trip you up, and it’s going to prevent you from succeeding…

that is, unless you master it and turn it into your powerhouse by getting crystal clear on where the trapdoors are so you can confidently recognize them and have the tools to disable them.

Perhaps someone once told you that you shouldn’t talk so much, or you shouldn’t be so emotional, or you’ll never make a living with your (insert creative endeavor here), or you’ll never amount to anything, or if you don’t go to college you can’t succeed, or you’re too irresponsible, and on and on.

Whatever you’ve been told by others – and through social and cultural inference – and via subliminal advertising messages, you’ve got stored deep in your psyche and when you begin to explore doing something new, something different, something outside the box, it rears its ugly head and reminds you of all the reasons why you can’t do it, why you won’t succeed, why you’re a fool for even trying.

And when that thing is a virtual business, with the steep learning curve and conflicting advice, along with the isolation and other challenges – and every guru on the block telling you that their method is the formula you need – getting clear on your truth is crucial.

#2 – You’ll encounter resistance and self-sabotage along the way

Just about the time you sort out all the confusion about the different technologies available, the various tactics and strategies and formulas being marketed, your own doubts and fears about your message and methods, and the time, energy and money investment to get things up and running, resistance will hit.

What if you actually succeed?

Oh shit! That’ll mean massive change…

and change is scary…

and it’s probably why you want to do this in the first place, to create change in your life…

but what if you actually do? Then what?

Change means learning a new paradigm, and doing things differently, and being out there and visible, and the whole world knowing you’re not perfect and you make mistakes, and maybe they laugh at you or think you’re a fraud…or worse, they don’t give a darn about what you have to say.

And self-sabotage shows up to slow you down so you don’t have to find out.

#3 – A commitment to excellent self-care is critical to your success

When you dream of leaving your brick and mortar world job for a virtual business you go into it imagining the freedom, the flexibility, the time you’ll have available when you’re not commuting and punching a time clock and stuck following someone else’s schedule and limited to 2 weeks’ vacation a year.

You dream of no longer being exhausted and having no time for yourself and not having to work overtime to get projects completed (then running around trying to take care of all of your personal responsibilities afterwards) – no more throwing yourself under the bus to get it all done.

When you start down the path of building a virtual business and you realize how much there is to do, you’ll decide that it’s okay to work overtime (and then some) at first; you figure once you’ve got everything going, you’ll be able to back off and have the lifestyle you’ve imagined.

But guess what?

If you sacrifice your own well-being in the beginning, you’ll set a pattern in place that’ll require you to keep doing it – and you’ll find yourself running just as ragged as you did in your 9-to-5 job.

You’ve got to set the stage from the very beginning to nourish yourself well or it’ll never happen unless you face plant somewhere along the line and decide to do it differently.

#4 – Doing it authentically is the right way to begin

In the virtual world everybody’s got a formula and they all will tell you that their formula is the way to go. It’s confusing, and discouraging…

and it’ll make you second guess yourself over and over if you let it.

It leads to Shiny Object Syndrome – every time you think you’ve got it figured out, the Next Big Thing will be all over the place on social media and you’ll feel compelled to jump on the bandwagon and incorporate it into your plan somehow.

And you’ll slow yourself down again…and you’ll be missing out on the opportunity to be exactly the person you came here to be and to reach the people you’re uniquely designed to attract – the ones who need your message, told in your voice, in the way you teach it.

It’s important to have a working knowledge of the available ways to get your message out into the virtual world – and the tools and technology available to help you do it – but the tactics and strategies and formulas and methods aren’t as important as who you are, what you have to say and how you say it.

That’s what your tribe is looking for…and they honestly don’t care which webinar platform you choose…they just need to hear your message.

#5 – Your own healing journey will accelerate exponentially

All of the things that brought you to the point of wanting to create a virtual business to share your message with the world will come back to the forefront.

As you begin to share your story, old wounds will surface, and things you thought you’d dealt with and put away long ago will come up again. You’ll see connections between things that you never saw before.

Each time you teach someone else – and hear their own stories and struggles – it’ll highlight the similarities in your own journey because, make no mistake, when you want to help others heal, the ones who are attracted to your teaching are the ones on the same healing path as you.

The teachers and the leaders are the ones who are a little way farther down the path, but the teaching and leading becomes the refining fire that burns away the final vestiges of your own pain and trauma…

and as you are willing to be real and raw and honest about your journey, whatever you still have to deal with in order to keep moving forward on your own path will emerge into the light, and as such, you’ll continue to heal and grow…

which will then enable you to continue as the teacher and the leader.

#6 – You have to be crystal clear on your why

When discouragement hits, when confusion rules, when self-doubt, resistance and self-sabotage show up you’ve got to have a singular focus to pull yourself up, dust yourself off and get going again.

And that singular focus is your why. Your why has to be stronger than your doubt and fear.

Why did you want to do this in the first place?

Your why is about the people you want to help – and how you want to help them – and it’s about what you want to bring to your own life by doing it (and perhaps to your loved ones lives, as well).

It’s your central message, the core of what you believe you are here to teach.

It’s the thing that is uniquely you – the thing that all of your experiences, talent, skills and nature combine to make you the perfect messenger for. The thing only you can say – in the way only you can say it.

It’s the thing that, if you could help just one person – and for free, at that – you’d be satisfied and grateful you had the opportunity to share it.

It’s the thing that sparks your enthusiasm and creativity every time you think about it.

#7 – You need to understand your money story and get past it

Perhaps you’ve been told ‘money doesn’t grow on trees’ or you grew up hearing your parents argue about money or tell you ‘we can’t afford that’ when you asked to get something at the store or join an extracurricular activity.

Maybe you’ve had financial difficulties – even filed bankruptcy or had liens – or you have a ton of credit card debt and you don’t pay much more than the minimum balance every month.

Possibly you’ve been taught to believe that the “rich get richer and the poor get poorer” while the middle class gets the shaft.

You’ve lived paycheck to paycheck a lot – and there’s usually more month than money – so you can’t count how many times you’ve said, “I’d love to but I don’t have the money.”

It could be that you – or your parents – had a lengthy divorce war over money and assets. Or you grew up with – or married – someone so frugal they make a penny squeak or have moths in their wallet.

Whatever your past experience with money, both as an adult and in childhood, if it’s negative in any way, it’ll hold you back from making your business lucrative…and so will believing you shouldn’t get paid for bringing your calling to the world.

#8 – Relationships are the most important thing to build first

There are as many formulas as there are business coaches, and there are tools and technology galore.

There are tactics and strategies and funnels and platforms and methods and sequences and an endless number of possibilities for doing virtual business.

And some of it is very cool, and a lot of it is helpful in streamlining your workday…

but if you’re not putting people first, just like in the brick and mortar world, then you’re not going to get anywhere.

In the Real World, good businesses have an emphasis on customer service, and they encourage team camaraderie, and management has an open-door policy, and good communication skills are valued.

It’s no different in the world of virtual business. Taking the time to connect with people – whether they’re your audience or your industry peers – is vitally important. And building those relationships comes in way ahead of deciding what tools to use or what strategies to employ.

Just as in the Real World, people want to be heard, and if you’re not putting most of your time and effort into hearing them, the technology you choose isn’t going to matter.

#9 – You need to believe in the value of your personal story

There are two ways to look at your personal story: the first way is that it is what empowers your message, the second way is that it’s what discredits you.

When you hit the resistance and self-sabotage phases of building a virtual business, you’ll want to believe the second way is correct – who am I to think I can do this? Look at the mistakes I’ve made!

And when working in your business accelerates your own healing journey, you’ll again want to believe the second way is correct – if I haven’t got it all together yet myself, who am I to teach someone else?

And when old programming flares up, you’ll still want to believe the second way is correct – *they* said it can’t be done.

Here’s the truth: your personal story is your credibility. If you’ve done the work to heal something in your own life – and have the motivation to help others heal in the same way – then the path of experience that brought you to that point, and the story you have to share about it, is the authenticity that credentials you to teach it.

It’s the honest sharing of your story that assures people you understand and that they’re not the only ones who are going through whatever it is they’re dealing with (who hasn’t thought they were alone – or even crazy – in dealing with their experiences?).

#10 – There’s an ebb and flow to creativity and you’ll have blocks

Sometimes you’ll run out of words and you’ll spend time staring at a blank screen and you’ll get stuck and you’ll feel like you’re trying to force something out of a dry well…

and sometimes you’ll just get sick of the whole damned thing.

And a little time will go by and you’ll suddenly get re-inspired and the floodgates will open and it’ll all come pouring out.

There are rhythms and cycles to creativity – larger seasonal cycles and smaller personal rhythms – and it’s inevitable that there’ll be periods of slow, or no, inspiration. It doesn’t mean you’re on the wrong track or that it’s time to quit.

It might mean you’ve been pushing too hard and need to give yourself a break, but usually it’s simply that it’s time to handle some mundane tasks – background things that don’t require a lot of creative output – and let it runs its course.

The cycles will be pretty predictable, and if you pay attention, you’ll know what they are, and that’ll eliminate the tendency to freak out when they happen.

Bonus Tip: It’s possible to launch a lucrative, sustainable virtual business…but you have to get out of your own way first

There’s a whole lot of advice available online about the best ways to launch and run a virtual business, and there are an uncountable number of tools and strategies, as well as people to teach them.

The “gurus” would have you believe that a multi-6 or even 7-figure business is as simple as following a certain formula – their formula – but it’s not as simple as that.

You can have the best method in the world, and if you get caught in old programming, in your money story, in resistance and self-sabotage, in throwing yourself under the bus, in trying to do it someone else’s way, or solely based on tactics and funnels and technology choices, you’re doomed to fail.

The health and success of your business starts with your personal wellness, and with having a strong and certain sense of who you’re meant to be in the world…

and with how you handle challenges, because it’s not all going to be unicorns and rainbows…

but it can be the most wonderful of adventures if you get out of your own way and let your unique purpose emerge and grow, and you’re willing to go against the tide and do it your own way.

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free

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Are You Grieving Well?

A lot can change in a year…and so much healing can happen.

April 11, 2014 was the first anniversary of my Mama’s death, and, in a cruel twist of irony, it was also the day of the final divorce hearing that ended an incredibly toxic relationship.  And, 16 days before, I’d had to make the choice to euthanize my beloved dog to end his suffering from kidney cancer…and 6 days after that, I’d moved, for the third time in less than two years, this time an hour away from my spiritual community.

Although I had spent most of the previous winter working on healing, physically and emotionally, to say I was shattered on that day wouldn’t be an understatement.

As I prepared to travel to the court, I was a trembling, weeping mess. I didn’t want to have to face my about-to-be-ex-husband on this of all days.  I was angry at myself for being so emotional, because I sure didn’t want to cry in front of him at the hearing (or in front of all the other people there for their own divorces), letting him see how broken I was.

When my first-born daughter checked in with me that morning, I told her how I was feeling about that and she had a very profound response: why not cry in court?  Too many people go into a divorce hearing unemotionally, as if the marriage had never mattered – and daring to be different and show emotion was a healthy choice.

That advice shaped the foundation of a new phase of healing for me.

And, ultimately, it refined the focus of my calling, my passion for helping women heal.

We’ve learned to hold our grief deeply inside.

Through cultural conditioning, we habitually ignore our pain and trauma, pushing it down and covering it up, sometimes anesthetizing it with our addiction of choice, or we substitute anger as the socially acceptable emotion.  Anger at the circumstances, at the other person, at God or fate, and at ourselves.

Both responses give the illusion of strength in adversity.

They are no such thing.

Suppressing, or anesthetizing, our grief and pain, or replacing our more sensitive emotions with anger, is a toxic process leading to physical and emotional fallout somewhere along the line, weakening us, not strengthening.

I came across a quote by the Dalai Lama on Facebook that aptly speaks to this: “We can let the circumstances of our lives harden us so that we become increasingly resentful and afraid, or we can let them soften us, and make us kinder.  You always have the choice.”

It reminded me of something I had read about 25 years ago.  It was a daily reading item in (I think) The Upper Room.  The story was about a grandfather speaking to his granddaughter about resilience.  He told her to “be a pine tree.”

I don’t remember all the details of the story, but that phrase has always stuck with me.  He was advising her to be more flexible and bend a little in the storms because, in being softer, she wasn’t as likely to break.

Not properly expressing our grief hardens us.

Life gives us many things to grieve, not just the physical death of family and friends.  There’s the death of beloved pets; the loss of a relationship; losing or leaving a home or a job; serious illnesses and accidents (our own or others); miscarriages; regrets and mistakes; difficult childhoods; abuse; traumatic relationships; financial hardships; loss or destruction of meaningful possessions; and on and on.

We barely allow ourselves time to grieve physical death in our culture, and we don’t consider all the other things something to grieve at all.

As a result, we just keep stuffing it down.

And our minds suffer.

And our bodies suffer.

And our hearts suffer.

What if we allow ourselves to grieve and it begins to heal us?

I went to court and I cried the whole time, tears steadily leaking throughout the process.

Then, I walked straight out the courthouse doors, visited with my spiritual advisor friend, and had a massage.

At the end of the day, I didn’t feel like I had anything left inside of me.  I felt like all the grief, all the anger, all the pain had leaked out with the tears, and I felt empty and alone.

I wasn’t even all that sure of who I was anymore.

But, I’m convinced letting myself begin to grieve all of my losses that day, and in the following days, is what ignited the path to who I have become.

A lot of unexpected things happened in the next 12 months: I got rid of a bunch of “stuff,” decluttering and lightening my load of possessions, keeping only that which has significant purpose or meaning to me.  I left my 20-year career to launch a business focused on helping women heal from trauma, and that has evolved in interesting ways.  I moved yet again, this time learning to embrace a far different set of circumstances than I’ve ever experienced.  I entered a new relationship, one much healthier and safer than I’ve had before, and having a level of support I’ve never had.  And we acquired a pair of dogs that bring us a lot of joy.

A thousand small things have changed along the way, too.

Each step I have made has been another step forward in the grieving/healing journey.  As I’ve made decisions about each choice, I’ve consciously allowed myself to examine and acknowledge the hurts of the past and then equally consciously chosen to let go of them and move forward into a healthier place.

When we don’t allow time for grief, our pain eventually defines us.

Pain isn’t meant to define; it’s meant to refine.  When our bodies or our psyches hurt, it’s the warning signal we need to pay attention to something important and do the work for it to heal.

If we have surgery or a significant illness, we know it takes time to get better (although in today’s culture we don’t seem to allow well for that, either).  We’ve forgotten how to allow enough time for grieving because we’ve devalued the process.

If you don’t believe that’s taking its toll, think again.

Women suffer the highest percentage of many chronic pain syndromes, as well as the highest percentage of anxiety and depression.  We survive in a state of chronic overwhelm, stress, and always feeling deficient.  The volume sold of prescription medications for pain, depression, and anxiety is astronomical.

Holding on to all the pain, trauma, betrayal, and hurt of our lives is at the root of the problem.  How we heal depends on how we process our grief, and the mindset we utilize as we rebuild after our losses.

And this includes the losses we choose ourselves: when we leave the relationship, leave the job, decide to move, choose to end contact with someone toxic, decide to euthanize a pet, let go of “stuff” that once had meaning, etc.

It’s not a fast process.

Here’s the thing: our current cultural paradigm says everything we do should be fast-forward, 24/7, quick fix, 30-days-to-better-X.

I’m not going to lie to you.  Reprogramming how we think, how we process trauma, how we redefine ourselves and rebuild our lives isn’t a quick and easy process.

But it’s worth the time and effort.

I’m also not going to tell you it’ll be all unicorns and rainbows afterwards; more things will go wrong in your life, and you’ll make other mistakes, and you’ll have more things to grieve.

But you’ll be better equipped to handle it in a healthy way once you learn to grieve properly. You’ll know how to care well for yourself, how to nurture yourself, and how to process the pain instead of storing it deep down where it will cause more havoc with your body and psyche.

As I mentioned, a lot changed in a year for me, and my daughter’s advice on that day markedly refined the focus of my calling.

I’ve always known I wanted to help women in pain, I just didn’t always understand the grief component.

As the first anniversary of losing my dog approached on March 26th, followed by the second anniversary of my Mama’s death on April 11th, I was thinking a lot about grief again.

I took a couple of weeks off, first to take a Florida vacation with my guy and then to complete some renovations and reorganization in our living space. We didn’t contrive to coincide with my personal season of grief; like so much else this last couple of years, “it just happened” that way.

And while I was away, my previous blog post about the day my Mama died, and our culture of inadequate grieving, was selected among the winners in the Boost Blog Traffic Spring 2015 contest.

Since I’m not a big believer in coincidence, it was an ah-ha! moment for me: I consider myself a healer, and I’ve come to understand my particular area of expertise is teaching women how to grieve and release their pain, trauma, and loss, helping them heal and create a the next chapter in their lives.

It proved itself in a hurry: in conversation with a new client, it quickly became apparent that talking to her about teaching her to grieve was part of the answer to her healing.  The conversation simply flowed, and she was excited to begin.

The traumas of my life and my work to heal myself were the training ground for what was coming next. In order to teach women to heal, I had to experience the pain and work through the process of my own healing.

And it really began when I stopped thinking I had done something to deserve all the pain and started allowing myself to grieve my traumas and my losses. Once I emptied myself of grief and anger, I began to find my value and worth hidden under all the debris.

But that’s a story for another day.

For now, take some time to consider what you need to allow yourself to grieve, and let me know your thoughts on grieving as part of healing below.

Love & Blessings,

Katt

P.S. One  of the ways I teach energy healing and manifesting skills is through my free Radiant Resilience Community – click below to join us and get The Secret to Emotional Resilience 4-part audio mini-course free