Tara Sophia Mohr: Playing Big and A Book Giveaway

I have such a wonderful treat for you today (and throughout the month of January!).

As I wrote in my last essay “Setting an Intention of Excellence” : “My word this year is: excellence.  Excellence as in optimal energy on all levels.  Excellence as in integrity, honor, quality and truth…no holds barred.  Focusing my awareness on living my purpose in life and investing energy only that which is spirit enlivening and life enriching while I release all else. I am also exploring the ideas of commitment and routine and stability within my practice of unfolding.  These are all feelings from my heart space–how does excellence feel to me, where shall I let it guide me, how will it manifest within my  creative expressions?”

It is my pleasure to share with you this month a series of interviews with a few people who inspire me to “be excellent”:  play big, explore, and experiment.

Today, I am delighted– thrilled beyond words!– to share energetic space with Tara Sophia Mohr.

 

Tara is a writer, coach, and personal growth teacher. She’s the creator of the global Playing Big leadership program for women and the author of Your Other Names: Poems for Wise Living. Tara has been featured on The Today Show, Forbes Woman and numerous media outlets, and is a regular contributor to the Huffington Post. Tara lives in San Francisco, California with her husband, and enjoys poetry, modern dance,
cooking for friends, and walking by the bay.

J: I recently took a huge professional risk.  Rather than rebuild upon something that I had outgrown, I chose to close my previous site and create this new one. However, my own initial doubts were affirmed with the negative opinion from another and I came very close to giving up on the creation of this site. With your words and experiences about “playing big” running through my mind, I chose to ignore that negative opinion, instead honoring my own truth and my heart expressions.  The result is that I have been a participant in magnificent collaborations while creating a vibrant “Facets” community. As I continue to “play big” your voice magnifies my own.  Thank you.  It is an honor to share energy with you here!

The wisdom and clarity that you reflect through your work allowed me to consider options I might not have otherwise. I wonder, when you are creating and doubt surfaces, what resources do you rely upon as you continue to create? And, if I may ask, what would you consider is the source of your power?

T: Wow. Big, rich question!

I believe that we are all channels for an incredible power – power that longs to create, to connect, to build, to love. We can each do things that keep the channel clear, so that the power flows through. For me, the activities that help keep the channel clear are sleep, writing, movement, honest conversation, fresh air, processing my emotions, and having “white space” time in my calendar. Those things help the power flow through. But the power itself is that generative life force we are all granted with. If you aren’t feeling that power – that’s totally okay. We all have periods in life when we get disconnected from it. That means it’s just time to start doing some of the practices that help open it – journaling, physical movement, creating art, and giving to others are all good places to start.

J: Your “Playing Big” course offers many tools to allow women to not only access their voice, but to listen to and create from that voice.  May you share a bit about that course with us?

T: I’d love to. I believe that, in order to be brought into greater balance, greater sanity, greater sustainability, the world needs women’s voices. I believe that we are finally at a point where women in the developed world have the liberty to step forward and contribute their gifts to the world, but that most of us are playing small.

My Playing Big program is a six month journey for women who want to play bigger: greater impact, more bold action, less fear – in their work. The program shares the tools that have been most helpful in my own journey to playing bigger, and in the lives of the women I work with. All of that together enables women to start playing bigger. So far, over 100 women have participated in the program. The next session starts in late January 2012.

J: I am captivated by the fusion of your gentle manner, caring soul, and your quietly powerful voice.  In a world where “fierce” and “loud” is equated with power, you model for women that one may be gentle, yet heard; one may be kind and create in big ways.  May you share with us a little about your philosophy; how did you find your voice and how did this fusion came to be?

T: That’s a beautiful compliment, thank you.

I have a revulsion to what feels like the “yelling” that is happening everywhere, particularly in the media and in advertising. I feel saddened by the way people build themselves up by putting others down. I feel alienated by the notion of power as power over others. I’m interested in power to do good, to bring light into the world. I’m interested self-expression, in sharing my ideas with the world, but I want to do that through creations that enrich the world and that take hold not because they are scary or sensationalistic or addictive, but because they comfort and heal, and most of all, because they resonate with the truth of people’s own life experience.

As to your question about how I found my voice, I found my voice through writing. Writing everyday over these past few years, I’ve discovered what I wanted to say. I’d say to each person out there: if you have a longing to paint, paint. To write, write. To teach, teach. Start doing the practice now, and you’ll figure out as you do it what your messages really are. You don’t have to know that in advance to start. And you don’t even have to know what your message is to communicate it – quite often people’s message is who they are – and it will come through loud and clear to the world whether you can articulate it formally or not!

J: You capture this fusion so well within your newly released book: “Your Other Names”–which include 26 of your original poems and gorgeous photography from three women.  May you share a little about your vision for this book? And, in what ways do you hope it is received..in other words, how would you like us, the reader, to use what is presented through this beautiful heartfelt gift?

T: Last spring I was giving a talk about creating white space in your life – creating empty, open downtime. We talked about why white space was so important, we did some workshop-type exercises, we had some group discussion. At the end of the evening, to close the session, I read one of my poems.

I could palpably feel the energy in the room change. It was as if the conversation shifted from our heads to something deep within our bellies. I looked around the room and saw many eyes filled with tears. I realized that those final three minutes of the evening had greater impact than the ninety minutes that came before.

From that point on, I became more interested in using my poetry as a tool for personal growth work, as a way to help people remember their own sacredness.

I think that we all get lost from ourselves in the hectic whirlwind of the world. We forget the shining sacredness of life, and we forget about the peace we can find within. The poems and blessings provide a quick, practical way – a two or three minute way – to reconnect to peace. I call this the “two-inch shift” it’s the little internal shift we can make in where we are coming from, internally, that makes all the difference in how we feel and how we act.

J: Within the description for this book you mention: “We all need ways to return, to find center again, to tap into a sense of peace.”  Within your life, how do you find your center, what brings you peace?

T: I have my “variety pack” of practices that do this, and I think each person needs to discover their own. For me, it’s writing, reading spiritual literature, conversations with kindred spirits, meditation, music, beauty, and — this is a new one—dogs!

J: In your about page you mention that the article “10 Rules for Brilliant Women” was picked up by “Huffington Post”..kind of your foot in the door..(I think it is a must read, please click the title to access this powerful article). How did you conceive this article? And what was your initial reaction to the reception of this article?

T: Yes, the article as originally published at Huffington Post and got a huge reaction – tens of thousands of women sharing it. Later it ran at More Magazine.com and this fall, I spoke about the article as a guest on The Today Show. A year and a half later, every day, there are still new people tweeting the article, sharing it on Facebook, or reprinting it at their blogs – it just keeps spreading. That’s how you know something’s authentically struck a chord!

More recently, I wrote a short workbook based on the 10 Rules, which is designed to help women start living the 10 Rules in their everyday lives. People can sign up to receive it for free at my site.

At the time that I wrote the article, I was coaching a number of interesting, creative women who I saw as absolutely brilliant. These women had important ideas to share in their companies, their industries, or communities. And yet, they couldn’t see their own brilliance.

In them, I recognized myself, and so many brilliant women friends and colleagues I’d had over the years, all of us in some way holding back on really believing in and acting on our unique ideas.

I sat down to write and thought, if I could take these women and look them in the eye and say, “Honey, this is what I want you to know about yourself!” this is what I would say. That was how the ten rules were born. My unconscious must have been working on them for a while because they poured out and about twenty minutes later, the article was done.

The article was so honest and so close to my own lived experience that as I contemplated publishing it, I felt terrified. Pumping heart, sweaty palms terrified. I’ve come to know that this is the sign of a good piece: it’s unique enough to make you worry that no one will get it or that or everyone will hate it or that you’ll embarrass yourself horribly. In other words, it’s not a “safe” piece.

J: As we look forward to this new year, what projects are you currently working on/what may we expect from you in the new year?

T: Getting ready for the next session of Playing Big, which begins on January 26th.

Sharing my poetry in the world in many different ways.

Giving a keynote talk at the American Association of University Women (AAUW) conference.

I’ll also be doing more video this year, which I’m really excited about. I have a couple exciting media appearances coming up (I’ll post about them on my site when they are happening!). I really do love being on camera and I can’t wait to do more.

J: Thank you for sharing your beautiful spirit!  In closing, is there anything you would like us to know about you, your vision, your voice?

T: Well, more than that, there’s something I’d like the reader to know about themselves and their creative pursuits. This is from the Your Other Names book.

Art-Making Poem

Your gifts are shy,
and stand behind you, like a child
peeking out from mommy’s leg.

But you already know that.

You’ve seen it a thousand times
as you tucked and buried them
wondering what was wrong with you

It wasn’t you. Gifts are bashful.
Most live hidden, and
die in alleys or crumble into broken stones.

What to do?

How to entice them to open the door
and step out?

A mad love for the thing itself
is the best remedy that’s been discovered

a love so wild you are willing to step
into the middle of a circle and dance.

You won’t know if the witnesses around you
are the neighbors
or the world
or just the critics from within

but you’ll go there
for the feeling of your foot sanding the floor,
for the flight in your chest when you jump.

That’s the best prescription:
a kind of foolery, a mad love.

But what if the fear has won out, you ask?

First, sink down to the floor and kiss
your feet.

Fall like someone has just
popped the balloon of you.

Then hug yourself into stillness.
Know that, sweetie, it will be alright.

Next build a fort in your bedroom,
a soft and covered spaced.
Pitch blankets, prop pillows
bring a firefly inside for light.

Then take it out, whatever it is
your flute or your pen or your clay,
and say your prayer of thank you
for this everything: vessel for your thoughts,
ceaseless companion, adventure-bringer, peace song.

Then take the question, Is it good or not?
and send it to the river to fish.
Let it catch you dinner while you work.

You are not making to be good.
You are making because
it is the great romance of your life.

Then make something. A little thing.
Look at how it loves you
how it woke up the earth to you
and gave you the life-heart back

how, because you are doing it,
the days are growing long again, as in childhood,
as if time is being given back to you
as you learn how your soul wants to use it.

– Tara Sophia Mohr

Tara has so generously gifted this site with a copy of her newly released book of poems “Your Other Names”.  Each reader who leaves a comment with your fill in the blank answer to this statement will be entered into a drawing. The drawing will be held on Sunday, January 8, 2012 at 9pm (PST).

Imagine you are looking back at the end of 2012 on the year that just passed. What would you like to be able to say about this, “Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I….”

Thank you, Tara!  Thank you, dear reader! *Excellent* indeed:)

Much peace and abundant love,

Joy

Reminder: Experiment. Explore.  Experience.

**Thank you, dear readers, for leaving such wonderful, inspiring comments!  Thank you for “playing big ” with your vision and your service!  The winner of the random drawing is: shannon. **

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Comments on: "Tara Sophia Mohr: Playing Big and A Book Giveaway" (32)

  1. …put to practice my talents to a higher level by delving to the core of my soul using these tools: Love, Humility, Honesty, Humor, Compassion, Confidence, Appreciation, Gratitude,Tolerance, and Commitment. With the purpose to create and give enriching *Beauty* to this World.

    Thank you so very much for sharing Tara with us! And thank you Tara! My daughters definitely will receive a link!

    It is interesting that a day after I wrote your sonnet I found myself south of Flat Rock at Torrey Pines State Beach observing the beauty of three young girls (4 to about 8) with their mom joyously playing amidst the waves. This while pelicans glided the top of the incoming swells…yes makes for a poem! Some times it just takes *seeing* simple honest love.

    • So much to love about this beautiful affirmation: “put to practice my talents to a higher level by delving to the core of my soul using these tools: Love, Humility, Honesty, Humor, Compassion, Confidence, Appreciation, Gratitude,Tolerance, and Commitment. With the purpose to create and give enriching *Beauty* to this World”. Thank you for sharing. I understand the desire to delve to the core of your soul…as you process the inner work, may I reflect to you the significance of celebrating as you create–much like your poems are a wonderful reflection of the beauty that you see, your daily “work” may be a wonderful reflection of the “tools” that you are using.
      It would be lovely for you to pass this link to your daughters..they would appreciate all of the facets of her work:)

  2. Megan Bord said:

    Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I finished and published my book… A simple tool to help others, yet one that I let linger within me because it was always easier to procrastinate than to jump into that circle and dance as if I was madly in-love with the moment I was in.

    Tara, this was an invigorating, yet reassuring, interview to read. I get the sense that in your life, you have a miraculous support network, including someone very closet to you who whispers encouragement into your ear (or heart, mind, what-have-you). Make no mistake, though, for I realize that in order to manifest that on the OUTSIDE, you had to first feel that support for yourself on the inside.

    Just like Joy said, you have gentle power to you, and as a woman whose coming into her own sense of gentleness and opening more to the feminine (“being”), I appreciated all you had to share here.

    Joy, thank you for bringing Tara into my kitchen this morning. The two of you were perfect company on this snowy, cold winter morning.

    Loving you both!
    Megan

    • I celebrate the publishing of that book and I am first in line to buy it, because I absolutely “need” the message within.
      I understand your hesitation, yet, there is great joy in “jumping into that circle and dancing”. I think we (okay I) forget that when we do jump in, we are not alone, there are magnitudes of people already there waiting patiently for us to join in the celebration of love and passion. I very recently released the lovely ribbons that ‘bound me’ and found myself in that circle–and when you jump into it I shall dance with you. (My PS, I feel like you are already *in it*–kind of like allowing Tara and I into your kitchen ?)

  3. Thanks Joy for this amazing interview and to Tara for your words of wisdom. As far as creating “white space” in your life, this is something I found when living on an island in Belize for a year, was so much easier to do than in the hectice life we live today in social media and in Orange County, California. It’s difficult to find that balance, and we certainly know when we’re not “there.”

    • Thank you for sharing! Belize sounds dreamy and peace filled and one day I shall visit.
      I hear your concern about balance–Orange County in nothing like Belize. For many years, I shelved my “white space” as I was in a community where creative expression was not widely accepted (yes, mental note to self: allow for–no, bigger than that *be*–the shift within this community!). After a while, though, I noticed that “shelving my white space” was, in a sense, shelving very significant parts of me.
      I know you are incredibly busy and productive–I’m curious (because I love your projects), may you share what is in your vision for 2012?

  4. Joy,

    Thank you so much for sharing Tara and her life philosophy with us. Both you and Tara have given me a wonderful new year’s gift.

    Tara — I read with interest the interview about all the things you’ve been creating, but to be honest it was the poem that I felt in my soul. It is so affirming!!!

    As a writer, I sometimes wonder why I do what I do. I’ve written all my life — journals, poetry and now I’m working on fiction. Sometimes doubt climbs on my back and in a mean voice whispers in my ear, “What’s the purpose of these words? They’re not good enough.”

    This poem fed me the truth, especially these lines:

    “You are not making to be good.
    You are making because
    it is the great romance of your life.”

    This is so true. When I write, I am in love with life and it doesn’t matter at that moment whether or not the words ever see print…they are my babies; born from the womb of my soul. I love them all and I thank you for reminding of this:~)

    Now the challenge: Imagine you are looking back at the end of 2012 on the year that just passed. What would you like to be able to say about this, “Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I…”

    …encouraged others to play with their own creativity.
    …wrote my own words with the simple joy of letting them play together.
    …shared my creations and rejoiced in the creations of others.
    …reached out to those who are struggling to find their own gifts and helped them to step up to share these gifts.

    Thank you both for this post. It definitely brightened my new year!

    • Sara,
      I am honored to begin the New Year’s with you..thank you! Tara’s message is empowering, beautiful, and honestly quite fun to reflect upon within our “Facets community’.
      I *love* this: “When I write, I am in love with life and it doesn’t matter at that moment whether or not the words ever see print…they are my babies; born from the womb of my soul. I love them all and I thank you for reminding of this:~)” ?
      And I think it would be wonderful to Skype at the end of 2012 and celebrate all of the magic you have spun with your words and creativity (Skype anytime you want to celebrate!)
      Your presence here and your words put a smile in my heart..you continue to inspire me to create outside of my box..(thus, my Flickr photo set). Thank you for being you!

  5. Dear Joy , Thank you for directing me to your sight today . My heart and soul was moved reading this interview and the Poem . The tears that have been sitting in my heart for weeks started to shed . At this point in my life I am once again in a place of uncertainty .I realized from reading this my soul is searching again and it is a good thing .

    • Hi Joyce,
      I Feel shedding tears is so refreshing and empowering–especially tears that have been pent up; a barrier is crumbling and that is cause to celebrate:)
      I am glad that your heart and soul are moved..you are on the verge of something very new and exciting..I will be delighted to see what creative expressions manifest within your life!
      Thank you for sharing so openly..my heart is smiling at the connection ?

  6. Hi Joy,
    I like the word excellence as a focus for 2012. Excellence is so much more flexible than perfection.

    I enjoyed reading your interview with Tara. She sounds like a smart lady.

    • Hi Justin,
      I used to be a perfectionist; however, I am by nature a “jumper” and the two just did not mix, so I threw perfectionism away.
      To me excellence isn’t “perfect”; rather the feel of it is life enriching, the best possible in this very moment..caring about the foundation and the details of the foundation of all that I create, so that natural flow from that is naturally “excellent”. It is somehow commitment and the willingness to establish rootedness to allow for the opportunity to blossom fully.
      I agree, Tara shares wisdom that reflects to each of us exactly what we ‘need’ as we continue to push beyond what we know as we create :)

  7. jean sampson said:

    Hi Tara and Joy.
    For about 10 years I have been teaching/figuring out how to teach non-artists (how they describe themselves) how to draw a realistic rendering in 3 weeks. I call my class “Drawing for Chickens” and it really makes people feel safe to read the title and the description of the class—-no pushing, rushing, judging, comparing. I keep everything really simple and tell folks that the only thing between them and drawing is fear, and I am used to dealing with fear, mostly my own, so I can help them with theirs. The class is 8 weeks long and the students usually ALL learn to draw using only 2 concepts. I am a poet by nature, not an artist, and I tell them that I also had to learn to draw, so I know how it feels to have to learn and also how it feels to struggle. I also teach a painting class called “Jean’s Gutsy Abstract Oil Painting Class” and I had to figure out how to teach that as I went along. The main skill I teach, above all the color and design, is to never quit, keep on painting. Even the worst looking mess is exactly what you need to make a lovely layer on the painting that will eventually result. I teach process over product, and I continually and teaching that to myself, too.

    Thanks for an inspiring post and poem—-poems touch a whole different place in people, don’t they? Great post! :D

    • Hi Jean,
      I love poetry–the words, the feeling..opens my heart, brings the tears and the joy.
      I *love* this–a beautiful affirmation for creating in life: “Even the worst looking mess is exactly what you need to make a lovely layer on the painting that will eventually result”.
      Once my little family took an abstract painting class. My son had a canvas, I had mine, my daughter was disinterested. After my painting was complete, my daughter stepped up to it and wanted to play with the tools adding layers. I love to create with my children, so I allowed her to add whatever she wished. To my surprise, the teacher looked at my painting and loudly asked “who ruined your lovely work?”..to which I replied: we call this “transition” and it now has a lovely depth and texture that wasn’t there before.
      Kind of like life:)
      Thank you for teaching art…I Feel creative expression is vital to inner peace and joy, and I appreciate the skills that you teach.

  8. Hi Tara, I know you shouldn’t have favorite lines (perhaps) in a poem, but my favorite is this:

    “Then take the question, Is it good or not?
    and send it to the river to fish.
    Let it catch you dinner while you work.”

    Just brilliant. So nice to see your work!

    Joy, I discovered your site via JD Meier’s. I like your content. And I like the “excellence” keyword for the year. I think I would choose “focus” as my keyword. Intense focus on the things that matter, ignorance of the things that don’t.

    Happy 2012!

    • Hi Bryan,
      Thank you for stopping in! I’m glad to meet you :)
      May I say this lovingly?…you “should” have whatever favorite you wish…it delights me that you have favorite lines *and* that you wish to share…Your reflection allows me to reconsider something in a different way. Thank you for that reflection!
      “Focus” is a very powerful word..I would love to hear updates on how you are guided through this intent.

  9. Geez, this post is just packed with powerful questions and answers!!

    I really love Tara’s response to your first question–the idea of keeping our channels clear so that our power can flow through. I am finding that view really resonates with me, as I’ve felt it in action. When I am engaged in activities like hiking and backpacking, I can really feel that channel wide open, and my inner power flowing freely. I’ve found that the best practice for keeping your channel clear is yoga. After all, this is a big part of what the practice was created for. :)

    I’m so glad you brought up the third question as well, as I’ve also felt the same way as Tara–opposed to the noise and “yelling” that seems to be the mode of operation for people who claim to want to share their gifts and help others. It’s just a strange way to go about sharing one’s gifts.

    Hers advice is spot on: if you have a longing to do something, you must get out there and do it. It’s not possible to always figure things out in our head–we have to get out there any experience, experiment, and practice for things to start clicking and falling into place.

    And wow, what a beautiful poem–brought tears to my eyes! Thank you so much for sharing this. :)

    Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I have taken the steps necessary to bring my dreams into reality. I completed my yoga teacher training and began sharing the joys of yoga. I even started offering outdoor yoga classes and volunteered to offer yoga to those most in need of it. I worked at an internship to help build my skills and gain more experience in adventure-based teambuilding, so that I can begin creating meaningful shared experiences for others, experiences that will allow them to discover more about themselves, to grow, to communicate better with others, and to develop meaningful relationships. Oh and let’s not forget, I finally published my first paid ebook, and what a a success it was! ;)

    • Adrienne,
      Thank you for joining us here…it is awesome to “see” you after so long!
      Your comment is beautiful–as you take each step, you are currently *living* your dream..and that is cause for celebration!
      Yoga is both powerful and empowering. I personally learn so much about my self as I gently stretch and often challenge my self on the mat, it reaches into every area of my life off of the mat. To me, yoga is not only the physical stretching, but the energy movement, and the spiritual practice.. my way of life. I am glad to share that in common with you. And please allow me space on your first guided adventure:)
      Tara’s poem touches me each time I read it..I am glad you were able to Feel that too.

  10. What a lovely giveaway and interview. It would be an honor to win. Thank you for the opportunity. And thank you for the wonderful question to reflect on.

    I especially loved the quote:

    “I believe that we are all channels for an incredible power – power that longs to create, to connect, to build, to love.”

    I think a lot of my practice as I journey through life is to continue opening the “channels” to living more fully, boldly and creatively, and inspiring others to live their most authentic paths.

    So to answer the question:

    “Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I….slowed down and got on the floor more with my kids. I played a lot. I laughed a ton. I danced until my sides hurt. I found my inner courage to face fears daily and I inspired courageous, creative, authentic living in others. I spent more downtime with my husband. I practiced being in the present moment each day so that I could be a good listener, friend, mom, partner and teacher to all those I came in contact with. I nourished relationships, enriched my creativity, celebrated my unique brilliance and lightened up. I learned how to live more simply and express gratitude each day. And I stepped beyond myself – sharing, writing, creating, guiding, touching, connecting, communing with all those looking for ways to live more simply, express their creativity, and be brave while walking their unique VIBRANT paths.” xo

    • Shannon,
      I *love* your energy, thank you for sharing!
      Many people commented on how Tara’s poem touched them..and I agree..but it is your comment that brings tears to my eyes..joy filled tears..thank you for the gifts that you share with your self, your family, your community, your world. Thank you for all that you reflect to me: each of your “intents” is mine as well..?

  11. How beautiful is this posting!! I keep up with Tara and I love her wisdom, creativity and gentle sensitivity. You know Joy, how much trouble I have playing big! Thank you Joy and Tara for the inspiration and delight!!! Your words are etched so deeply in my heart~! love, love, love to all you beautiful souls who share so deeply from your hearts!

    • Thank you, Brenda! What I see in you is brilliance and wisdom with a writing style that is fluid and lovely and a spirit that is *huge*! It is a pleasure to share Tara’s message with you in this space..and a joy to reflect to you love to the nth degree…what you see and feel here is merely a reflection of the inner you ?

  12. Because the world needs my services, in 2012, I threw my excuses to the wind, flung my arms to the skies and said,

    “I’m ready. Use me for all that is good, creative, juicy and joy-filled. Allow me to help women near and far to love their lives, honour their bodies and live their unique sparkle in the world.

    Teach me to know my own brilliance and let that come pouring out of me for my daughter to witness and model.

    Gift me courage to author a life so juicy that even I can’t put down my auto-biography at the end of my life.”

    And with that, I put on my favourite dress, fluffed my curls, smacked my lips a rosy pink and walked out the door without a second thought.

    Behind me… Every belief that no longer fits.
    In front… every possibility I’ve dreamed of.

    Butterflies or not, it’s show time, I thought. This woman has a book, a song, a business and a family to rock!

    And with one last look to the heavens, I whispered, “We’ll figure it out as we go, ok?”

    ******************************************************************
    P.S. Thanks for an amazing interview with Tara. Her words gave me further permission to continue wriiting and allow my message to take shape as I write. It’s the act of writing or painting that pulls the artform out of us.

    Brilliant.

    Wishing you a sparkling 2012,
    Paula Onysko

    • Wow Paula, you go!!! You write it, paint it, rock it..I *love* your energy and this: “Behind me… Every belief that no longer fits.
      In front… every possibility I’ve dreamed of. Butterflies or not, it’s show time, I thought” is going to be my new affirmation as I create. Only I’m going to straighten my curls, put on my boots and walk out the door *grin*
      Thank you for the gift of your words–beautiful imagery and spunk and all that is *juicy*!

      • Thanks so much! Oh and I’m with you… some days I too am straightening my hair, putting on my boots, kicking up my heels and skippin’ out that door! I think I just might have to hip-check that door shut to make it super juicy!

        Keep sparkling Joy!
        Warmest, Paula O.

  13. Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I uncovered my true calling—digging deep through my past experiences and unearthing my buried dreams—and I took big, bold actions steps toward living it.

  14. Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I dared to embrace and step into the belief that I am whole and complete – nothing missing, nothing broken – and I carry peace. This is my 2012 ‘mantra’, as written on my bedroom mirror.

    It is a new boldness to let go of the striving and performance, and rest fully in who I am – which is leading to a new freedom to ENJOY life and all of its beautiful moments (novel idea!) and to create space for the work that is true to my passion and gifts. Shortly said, it is an authentic life, without apology – a rich life, indeed.

    Thank you, Joy. I have been following Tara’s writing for some time, and have enjoyed discovering your beautiful blog now :)

    • Melissa,
      Wow. Each line of your words resonates so deeply with me.
      “I am whole and complete…and I carry peace” is a beautiful life affirmation. May we all know and feel this way.
      And the rest is exactly where I am on my path–a creature who enjoys movement in all ways, I am learning stillness and taking the time to allow for “rooted-ness” so that I may blossom fully before taking the next step. You so eloquently share what I feel.
      Thank you!

  15. What an inspiring article. Thank you for posting the interview. I’m glad I stumbled upon your blog and will be back to visit.

  16. Because the world needs my service in 2012, I will listen to and follow the Voice of Love, Light, and Wisdom within.

    I will make and follow a schedule to complete a 365-day book of daily reflections on marriage and other long-term committed relationships.

    I will give thanks daily for the support and love that is being so abundantly bestowed upon me to help me in this happy endeavor.

    Thank you, joy. Thank you, Tara. I’ve been stuck. Because of your discussion and exquisite gifts I got unstuck yesterday. I had a joyous day and a deep sense of gratitude and “enoughness” when the day was done. I know you are abundantly blessed as you bless the world.

    Anne

  17. Thank you Joy and Tara.
    Because the world needs my service, in 2012, I connected with others through giving of my gifts without holding on to expectations.

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