What passionate, audacious ideas and creations are you cooking up as we enter the year of the Fire Monkey?
I’ve gone back and re-immersed myself in every aspect of my business, my offers, my brand, and my marketing language. I’m kicking open the doors that have been stuck shut for years, the ones that lead to a deeper and truer and more honest presentation of the depth of my experience and skills; the doors behind which some aspects of my sovereign kickass self have been hiding. The year of the Fire Monkey a powerful invitation, let’s accept it together!
I’m deep in the process of a complete upleveling and rebranding of Magnolias West — a process that I flirted with for over a year and then (finally!) began in earnest about six weeks ago. I admitted to myself how I had prettified and softened up my branding because I was scared, and how that prettifying and softening weakened my brand. This has happened before; fear has gotten in the way of my clear message, of trusting my gut and my instincts. It happened when I was raising my kid. I didn’t trust my intuition, so I told her and taught her what I thought she needed to hear and learn instead of telling her the truth and sharing what I learned and how I learned it. Yup. Trying to act and talk like some ’60s TV housewife worked just as well as it sounds like it would. As in not very well at all.
I did the same again with my business. When I finally agreed with the wisdom of marketing to a niche (back in the Magnolias West 1.0 days), I got really clear on who my ideal client is, what she looks like, what she craves, and what she needs. And then I backed off, made my descriptions softer and more general, and left some of the gritty truths, transformations, and teachings I have learned and that I know I’m supposed to impart behind closed doors.
No more, yo. While my brand will still be pretty (prettier than ever!) Magnolias West 3.0 will convey a clearer message than ever before, and speak to the hearts of exactly the women I’m meant to serve. My tribe will get smaller, and that’s fine. How many people do I need or want to help?
Here are a couple of questions to help you dance into your own mischief, your own Monkey Business. Take some time to discern. Light a candle if that’s useful for you. Grab your journal, or some paper and a pen. Ask yourself:
Drop the momentum-killing idea that conditions have to be “just right” in order to take a risk. Take the risk. Dance with the monkey. Share your beautiful, audacious, provocative Monkey Business with the people who are gonna be so happy to see it!
What Monkey Business are you getting up to? What are you ready to start? I’d love to know. Let’s talk in the comments.
Especially if you’re starting out, or building (or re-building) your business, you may often find yourself taking on roles that are challenging, unfamiliar, and sometimes downright scary!
This is certainly true in my case.
For me, with my business in a rebranding and rebuilding phase, I am doing much of the work on my own. I’ve cut down on paid help for now. Which means I get to do just about everything for Magnolias West.
Lucky for me I love learning new things.
In the process I got to learn some new and way cool stuff. You might want to file these resources for you and your team; they can come in very handy. I love sharing what I’ve learned!
But since I am wearing that particular hat right now, I’m saved by the fact that I love learning, and love troubleshooting (as long as the trouble doesn’t last too long!). Now that I’m back to wearing almost all of the hats, I’m enjoying learning, successfully implementing what I’ve learned, and sharing the info with you.
What are your favorite resources? What would you like to share? Let’s talk in the comments.
For now, I will be changing my blogging and newsletter schedule to something like every other week (instead of weekly). I promise to keep delivering consistently true, slightly audacious, and always juicy content. I will use the freed-up time to move my business development and rebrand along quickly and beautifully.
It’s time, it’s past time, but upleveling is happening, despite the fact that I often move like a glacier.
My commitment now is to embrace upleveling and transform everything for the better.
There are some things that are working really really well. List growth, social media follows and connections, deep and deeper interactions with the people I’m meant to work with. But revenue is in a shambles, and it’s time to transform everything to a new way of being.
I read these words on Eleanor Beaton’s blog today:
You’re not just born once. Throughout your life you are continuously re-born. And each time you uplevel, you move through a dark and mysterious path to reach a new level of you. Darkness, confusion, uncertainty: this is the starting point for major growth and transformation.
What do I do first? What do I do second? What changes to make?
Am I too old? Too health-challenged? Is it too late?
Murky, more like. I’m crystal clear on this: It’s time for me to manifest the changes and awarenesses that have taken root inside me about my work and how and whom I’m meant to serve.
I’m completely in the dark about how this manifestation will happen.
My new Mastermind group begins this week, and this is what I keep hearing in my head:
Commencing countdown, engines on
Check ignition and may God’s love be with you
(Thank you, thank you, David Bowie.)
I’d love to know; please let’s talk in the comments.
In fact I have learned to love these periods, and celebrate them as times to rethink, recalibrate, recharge, renew, revise…. You see the theme, right? Mercury retrograde invites you to quiet down the outer activity and do some of the inner work (think words that start with “re-“) that will make the next actions you choose to take manifest with more ease, be more productive, and lead to more abundant rewards.
But not today.
I got up early to go get my car smog-checked. My car registration is due this week. I left an hour before a client appointment to get this done. This happened:
I was on time (barely!) for everything. I had yummy grilled sweet potatoes to eat. I got everything done and will get my registration payment to Motor Vehicles on time.
I was on time because I leave more room than I need in my schedule for everything, and I do that all the time, not just when Mercury retrograde is in da house. In case I ever begin to think I’m leaving too much of a “shoulder” between events in my calendar, I will remember today, and keep doing what I do. This practice saved my ass today, has saved my ass many times in the past, and is a keeper.
Take that, Mercury retrograde!
How do you ensure that snafus (Mercury retrograde–related or not) don’t mess you up? What practices allow for your ease when shit happens? I’d love to know. Please share with me in the comments.
I’m inspired by Melanie Bates’s article, and especially by this line describing the crap year she had had: “You know how it goes. Everyone is always awesome in an obituary!”
Like Melanie, this one goes out to anyone who had a rough 2015, whether or not you overcame or are still in the dance.
A shift away from seeing the past year as another failure. A failure to earn enough — again. A failure to recover from a chronic illness — again. A failure to find the love of my life, at least one who thinks the same about me at the same time — again.
Here are the lights, high and low. They’re all noteworthy, and I list them in order of — I guess in the order of the impact made on my tender heart and seeking spirit:
Thank you for everything you have taught me. As you hand me off now to young 2016, I go with an undaunted heart, a strong body, curiosity, passion, and the strongest sense of mission I’ve ever had.
What have you seen? Learned? Released? What are you keeping with you and what’s gotta go? Let’s talk in the comments.
These are the big-ass visions and dreams that came up for me when I participated in Quest 2016.
I mean, look at this question! —
How would you do business as unusual in 2016 if you knew — no matter what you chose — you would not fail?
Sit with this question for a minute. Stop reading the article, look at the question again, and suck it into your heart, your gut, every cell. Ask yourself the question.
Huge, huh? Huge! If you’re buzzing already with juicy, crazy ideas, go ahead and capture them — write them down, sing them into your phone and record them, type them into a note. It’s okay; come back and read more later. Don’t let these messages from the Divine get away!
Okay, you’re back, good!
When I sat with that question up there, I realized that one of the first things I would do is share my wild almost-too-big-to-contemplate goals and ask for your help and support. Asking for support is a miraculous thing and so critical for changemakers and wisdompreneurs tio remember: We don’t have to do the work we do alone. I get to share my stuff with you, even the scary bits and ask for your recognition, empathy, comments, love, and support. And I get to support you in your journey. We are a circle and the more we connect, support, and love each other, the more we grow and thrive. #WillNotFail
And maybe I can help you achieve yours too. (More about that, and the Conscious Collaboration community later.)
Oh it feels good to be so daring and to share my heart with you!
Of course you can leave a comment, I love comments! But…If you want to get even more support, I’m inviting you to my Conscious Collaboration Facebook Group. That’s where we can really get in conversation with each other. Check Conscious Collaboration out; it’s free and fabulous!
One of the things that holds us back from sharing our goals out loud is the fear that we will fail, or that things won’t turn out the way we hoped or planned. But the downside of not sharing them? You miss out on all the support and opportunity that sharing your goals in community can bring.
So, if you’re feeling uncertain about sharing, perhaps this will help — to know this truth that I’m still unwrapping: I feel my visions and goals — as they have revealed themselves to me at this point — very strongly, but I also feel that this is just a beginning, and that, like everything else in my life, they may grow and or change over time.
It’s okay if your goals change too. But don’t let that stop you from claiming them now. Try these four steps:
Last chance to grab the workbook here.
Start from how you want to feel, start from that place that you #WillNotFail.
If you are creating goals and intentions to give you something — like more money or more security or peace or success — start by tuning into this #WillNotFail feeling directly in your heart.
And then discover your goals and share them bravely.
Power tip: If you want to affirm that you will not fail, turn the statement into one that’s in the positive present-tense. The universe pays close attention to your action words: Affirm #IEasilySucceed. Affirm #IManifestMyIntentions. Affirm your living breathing beautiful dreams, goals and intentions in the here and in the now.
Jump into the Conscious Collaboration Facebook Group and join the supportive loving conversations. Listen for what you need and give generously of your heart and your kickass smarts. There are themed threads, and of course you can always post a request for support to the wall.
Take the time to think about each goal and how we can support you. Include these in your Conscious Collaboration posts (or in a comment below) where you can. Be specific. Example? My book — I asked you to leave a comment and send me encouragement. It’s a discrete, actionable step you can do.
Sending love and huge New Year’s blessings.
I’ve done this before, and each time I did I found myself forgetting my theme / focus by the time February rolled around. So no, I wasn’t going to do this divination this year. Instead I did my Completion, Release, and Intention Workbook that I sent out to all my subscribers (still time! — you can get yours here if you haven’t already) and I settled into healing from the flu and then from laryngitis which turned into pneumonia.
But sometimes life and the Divine have other ideas.
One of the members of my healing team, a brilliant woo woo md, told me to start working on my power chakra. The context was my chronic digestive problems and the point was, I think, to stand sovereign in my own power around my health. I revisited my favorite chakras meditation, giving extra time and attention to the power chakra.
I read Catherine Buck Clarenbach’s post, in which she asked these questions, inviting her readers and me to ponder and answer any time from three days before the Solstice to the upcoming Full Moon:
Catherine’s questions lingered with me…. I didn’t come up with any answers, but the questions themselves were resonant.
I got sick again, this time with pneumonia, and a very lovely friend suggested we come up with questions around which we could each do some art. When she made her suggestion, I came up with my own version of Solstice/Full Moon questions, riffing on Catherine’s prompts I had read a few days before:
The piece of paper I pulled out had some notes written years ago when I was in deep despair having finally realized that the $22,000 I had invested with yes-too-good-to-be-true scammers was gone gone gone never to return. The bit on the bottom is a third-person suicidal poem, and I guess that face is supposed to be my imagined corpse. I was going to turn the page over to paint on a clean white sheet, but felt driven to paint right over that deep despair.
The piece turned out to be a representation of my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th chakras:
I used colors that represent those chakras to me and painted hearts and flames.
And then I realized I had come up with my theme for 2016 (bypassing my mind and plans entirely). Passion, power, and love.
Ask with art supplies. Ask with a candle. Ask with your camera. Just ask. You might be as surprised as I was to find that your theme and focus are already in your heart and ready for you to open to them.
Let me know what arises in your heart. A theme for the year? A theme for simply this turning of the wheel? I’d love to know; talk to me in the comments. Solstice blessings.