The Great Awakening

The Great Awakening

The Great Awakening

If you’ve been into spirituality for any amount of time, you are aware of the terms “awakening” and “ascension.”

By and large, most people define awakening as becoming aware of what is happening in the world around you–the “real” reasons why governments do what they do, social injustices, the horrible state of the world. Being “woke,” as the younger generation would say.

A lot of people believe that a mass awakening means that the sheeple of the world will suddenly become aware of all of these things, unify, and demand change. Except what that change looks like differs starkly depending on which side of the political aisle you fall on, and for as long as we have a division of values, we will never have unity.

This is not what being awake means, and this is not what the great awakening is. Not by a long shot.

How we see the world–how likely we are to empathize with the plight of others, which side of the political spectrum we fall on, and our natural (or nurtured) personality inclinations—is very connected, and to some degree, how that plays out in our daily lives is what collectively creates the conflict in the world around us.

“Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space there is a power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. – Viktor Frankl

Becoming self aware enough to recognize our own traumas, habits, and patterns, and how those triggers cause us to make certain decisions is what it means to awaken. Becoming aware of how those engrained patterns and beliefs created by outside influences shape the way we think and the choices we make and being able to separate ourselves from them is what it means to truly free thinker.

Our great awakening is when we awaken to ourselves, because the world around us is simply a reflection of that.

What Price Freedom?

What Price Freedom?

What Price Freedom?

I‘m re-sharing this post that I initially published on January 22nd, 2017, because it seems like a particularly relevant topic right now. Let me know what you think.

I had an interesting dream last night. I dreamed that Donald Trump wanted to buy me. Literally, buy me…like a pet or some sort of material object.

The thing was, I had to agree to allow myself to be bought. The trade off was that I would be completely taken care of, live in material luxury, and never, ever have to worry about my physical safety or being provided for – but I had to live in his mansion and I could never leave. It was represented to me as a gold and glass terrarium, of sorts – literally, a gilded cage, like a human aquarium.

The entire dream, I was walking around with him and one of his assistants to various places where he would comment on things and attempt to convince me to allow him to buy me.

In the end, I decided that no amount of security or safety represented in the form of material wealth was worth trading in my freedom.

As I thought about the dream and what it represented for me personally, as well as on a more national scale, I had some illuminating thoughts.

On a national scale, if we are to take Mr. Trump’s appearance in my dream at face value, it’s an interesting metaphorical representation of Trump’s isolationist outlook and certain political sentiments that have been expressed by a number of people over the last decade (and long before that, I’m sure) in reference to things like national security and the NSA. People who say that they are perfectly okay with trading in certain personal freedoms for the promise that someone else will keep them safe, provide for them, people who are ok with sacrificing their privacy in the name of security, etc.

It’s also a very apt metaphor about the illusion of security that is provided by a capitalist society–that money and things are what make us feel provided for and safe. The aspirations of success and luxury are really just a cage that keeps us trapped in an economic system that benefits some more than others, and is, at the end of the day, unsustainable.

With the rise of terrorism in the U.S., people seem to be adhering to fear in insane ways. Is this what so many people want? Is a prison still a prison if it has golden bars instead of iron? It’s incredible what fear will make people do.

On a more on a personal level, the dream represents sacrificing what would bring you true happiness for the sake of being financially provided for. So many people live in the mindset that they can’t pursue what they truly want because of money or some other material reason based in fear and a scarcity mentality.

When we make these kinds of sacrifices out of fear, we are giving away our freedom to create a life we truly love in exchange for a life that simply meets our material needs. We are sacrificing enjoying our lives to just be alive. Ask yourself this question – which is better? A few short years of pure, unadulterated freedom and joy, unencumbered by the illusion of material comforts, or a long life lived safely but mundanely? Is total freedom worth the risk involved? And how much freedom are you willing to trade in the name of financial safety and security?

Four Ways to Stay Sane Over the Next Two Months

Four Ways to Stay Sane Over the Next Two Months

Four Ways to Stay Sane Over the Next Two Months

I‘m trying to write more, but I am fortunate enough to still be working full-time from home, so a lot of my time is still dedicated to business as usual.

I know things have been intense these last two weeks, especially here in the greater New York City area, and they are only going to get more intense in the next few weeks as cases continue to rise. Earlier this week, the notifications about confirmed cases from people at work started rolling in. Many of them began exhibiting symptoms just 1-3 days after we were sent to work from home (March 10th).  Of course, none of them were able to confirm what they had until two weeks later due to the unavailability of tests. At the time we closed, there were only four confirmed cases in New Jersey (where my office is located) and none in Hoboken where I work. Our offices closed at least five full days sooner than many in Manhattan. As you can see (and as was made clear by many health officials), COVID-19 was already spreading, and this delayed action and lack of proper testing is a major reason why New York City is in the state that it is in right now.

Luckily I work for a university who, like many other universities across the country, closed campus out of an abundance of precaution–and they got us out just in time. Many in the media criticized this action, however, it may very well have saved our student population AND ME.

Like most people, I’ve been experiencing waves of fear and anxiety about current circumstances. Just because I’m here helping you all doesn’t mean that I’m immune to the emotion surrounding what’s happening in the world, and I won’t pretend to be.

I want to tell you that it’s okay to be afraid.

You don’t have to pretend to be strong. You don’t have to bury the fear and pretend everything is going to be ok when you don’t know if it is.
We use coping tactics like denial (it’s just a cold), dismissiveness (I’m not worried!), humor, or even positivity as ways to mask our fears. It’s ok to admit to yourself and others that you are afraid.

You can’t help what you feel. Uncertainty is a BITCH and we are facing a lot of it right now.

But I do know that this is the moment we’ve all been waiting for. This is the moment so many people have been predicting. The world will never be the same after this. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing. We have the opportunity to collectively create something better when this is over. Life will change. And we will be better for it.

So for now, we must all be here, together, with each other and for each other, as we move through this. Let yourself cry, and then let go of control, and surrender to change.

As of right now, my tentative return to work date is May 18th, which means I’ve got another month and a half of hanging out at home, and I imagine many of you do as well. Here’s four things that can help you survive the next few weeks:

#1: Limit Your Media Consumption

Stay informed, but moderate your consumption. Stop watching the news and stay out of your Facebook feeds. Stay informed, but remember that once you stop learning useful information that is relevant to your immediate safety, it becomes fear porn. Media speculation is only going to feed your fears, but it’s just that: speculation. Headlines are particularly loaded, divisive, and misleading right now because we are in an election year. The same way that you feed your body, you also feed your mind. Don’t fill it with fear.

You can still be social, just stick with groups that uplift you (like mine! Join here) or on platforms where there’s less fearmongering, like Instagram.

#2: Stay In The Present Moment

The more you focus on uncertainty of the future, the more fearful and anxious you become. Stay rooted in the right now, right in front of you. Your family. Your home. Your work. Yourself. Take it one hour at a time. The sun will still rise in the morning. You are going to be okay. Take a break. Take a breath. Let your mind be with things that bring you joy.

Some of my magical friends and I are offering lots of free or low-cost spiritual resources, classes and events right now including spiritual reading material, free long-distance group reiki sessions, donation-based one-on-one reiki sessions and personal readings, daily online yoga classes and so much more. Join my Facebook group for more details.

#3: Emotional Stability Comes From Within

The notion that it comes from certainty of outside things (like jobs, routines, and otherwise) is an illusion. When you relax into trusting the universe–that you are going to be okay, no matter what, you can release your need for control. This gives us the ability to be resilient, to change and adapt as we need to to whatever comes. It’s easier said than done, but if there were ever a moment to place your faith in something bigger than you, it’s now.

#4: Release The Need For Control

The only thing any of us truly has control over is ourselves. Mind your business, stay in your lane, take care of yourself and the ones who matter to you most, and detach from everything else. The only exception to this is if you feel called to help. Just remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup, and you must take care of your mental health and emotional well-being first and foremost.

It’s crazy out there, guys. Remember, you cannot control what goes on around you, but you can control what goes on within you and that is the greatest power any human being possesses.

Xo, 

 

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I Quit

I Quit

I Quit

I had 17 people follow me in a single day on Instagram earlier this week. Of the 17, nearly every one of them was some type of intuitive personal development coach or mentor.

Within three days, most of them will disappear, because that’s what people do on Instagram to try to gain followers.

When I see people behaving this way, I question their motives for doing what they do.

I wrote in a post on Instagram not long ago that I take serious issue with the commercialization of spirituality. Once the desire for success overtakes the desire for service to the greater good, you cross the border into service of your own ego, and the work loses its integrity.

Spiritual work is sacred work. People are trusting you with their deepest level of vulnerability. You have a responsibility to honor that within your interactions. You have a responsibility to model integrity, not just in how you do business, but in how you live your entire fucking life.

It’s easy to tell people the fundamentals of how to create change in their lives. It’s a wholly other thing to show them in the way we carry ourselves day-to-day. It calls us to elevate ourselves, our actions, and the entirety of our lives to a higher level of integrity. To live fully within our purpose in every moment and be a beacon of hope for the masses.

This is the highest calling, the greatest purpose – to BE that which you present yourself as.

The longer I’ve been on social media, Instagram in particular, the more disillusioned I’ve become with people who claim to be something they aren’t, the people who follow them, and the people who help create them.

“Anyone can become a coach! I’ll teach you how. Just take my online course for $5,000.”

They throw out words that they don’t understand the meaning of, like intuition, spirit and purpose, teaching others to teach others when they haven’t done the work, and neither have the people they’re “coaching.”

The fact is, you can only teach others from the same depth at which you’ve done your own work and the thing you start to learn the more you work is that the work is never finished.

One of the people who started following me was a 22-year-old “intuitive transformation coach.”

“It’s taken me 22 years to find myself!” she glowed in one of her perfectly curated Instagram photos, ending with a call to action to join her training program.

I’m almost 36 and I still haven’t found myself and honestly don’t expect I will until I’m at least 50, if truly “finding yourself” is something that’s even possible in the grand scheme of being an ever-evolving, multi-dimensional being. The one thing I do know for damn sure is that 22 is the age where you barely fucking know who you are and, more than likely, are the epitome of lost in your own self-loathing, completely unaware of yourself, your true values, or your true identity. 

Sure. Anyone can present the illusion of being a “coach.” Even someone who was a teenage adolescent as little as three years ago.

You can teach people. You can coach them, even, without completely “knowing” yourself. The key is to be transparent as fuck about the fact that you don’t know and that you, too, are a student of life. But that goes against the principles of a good sale, doesn’t it?

Business coaches will tell you that you need to present yourself as an authority. Talk about what you KNOW, not what you don’t know. Admitting that you’re not the best and ultimately, you’re just here feeling it out like everyone else doesn’t make you stand out from the crowd and it certainly doesn’t make needy people want to buy your product.

The thing is, especially in the realm of personal development and spirituality, “best” doesn’t exist. There is no spiritual authority. That is both the beauty and the madness of it.

I see these people – people who feel energetically out of alignment, some of which I know empirically and factually to be living a lifestyle that is out of alignment with the spiritual values they preach on a daily basis – presenting it on social media to thousands of people, and in some cases, hundreds of thousands of people, as though it’s some kind of evolved thing they should all aspire to, and it is utterly appalling. They even preach authenticity while simultaneously having no real understanding what that even is.

I unfollowed the maker of my favorite oracle deck because I discovered she was following one such person. My immediate thought was, “How do you, as so-called intuitive, not see this person for what they are?” I’m sure it’s only because there’s a blue checkmark next to their name, but that now brings her spiritual integrity into question. How can I, in good conscience, support the work of a person who either A) claims to be intuitive and supports someone who is energetically disgusting, or B) support the work of a person who will follow and engage with people who are energetically disgusting simply because they can gain more exposure for themselves?

The answer is that I can’t, in either instance. It makes me want to throw up, and I don’t mean metaphorically. I mean the energy behind it is an actual assault on my solar plexus – it tightens and constricts and I feel repulsed.

Maybe it’s because I’ve spent 16 years immersed in marketing, branding and advertising and I can smell a sales pitch from 100 yards away. Maybe it’s that my intuition really is that on point. In the one instance where one of these kinds of people offered me exposure on their platform, I refused because I didn’t want to be associated with that kind of energetic garbage.

If this is what mainstream spirituality has become, if this is where we are…turning our healing process into a business model and using sacred terminology to make sales pitches, I can’t be a part of it anymore. I. WON’T. DO. IT.

My platform is authenticity and it’s been built on a foundation of integrity. And I can’t, with good conscience, continue to align myself with this parade of false idols.

And so, it’s with that, I bow out. The day I thought would never come has arrived. This the end of In My Sacred Space.

Maybe it’s time. Maybe it’s been long overdue. I did discover  over the weekend that on the last day of Mercury Retrograde, my entire website had mysteriously been deleted from my hosting server. It was recovered, obviously, but it seemed like that was the final and ultimate sign from the Universe that my time here has gotten stale, and to move on.

I suppose my first sign should have been when a semi-well-known bra company that, if you’re female, you’ve no doubt seen heavily advertised on Instagram and Facebook reached out to me to be a part of their influencer program. What did they think I was going to do? Post pictures of my tits in their bras and talk about self love like everyone else on Instagram? My body is not your billboard, and my words are not for sale. Seriously. Fuck off.

I didn’t respond to any of the multiple emails they sent me. I happen to own three of their bras already and frankly, they’re no better than any other bra I’ve ever owned. Here’s your glowing endorsement: mediocre at best.

For some of you this may admission may seem sudden, but it’s been building for well over a year. Probably since I first set foot into ABC Carpet and Home and discovered their culturally appropriated home decor collaboration with Deepak Chopra. It was very beautiful, very over-priced…and it made me uncomfortable as all hell. But I guess if that $1,000 iridescent-glazed statue of Ganesha makes one rich white person feel a little more enlightened and a tad closer to God, so be it.

No space is sacred anymore, not even your living room. Capitalism has recognized an opportunity to merge with “spirituality” and the money machine is in full effect, permeating every aspect of your life.

I feel like I’m in the Wizard of Oz, screaming at everyone to look at the man behind the curtain, and their attention remains transfixed on the glittery image being projected in front of them.

I’m sure I’m not completely done with spirituality. It’s probably more so a time for me to evolve into something else, and this form of it has simply come to an end. My takeaway from the whole of this experience, all of my years in marketing and advertising and all of my experience with “influencing” and “coaching” is that the U wants me to learn from it, to see it, and to do it differently. This is Uranus in Taurus energy, for all you astro nerds out there.

I have no idea what it is or what it looks like. I just know that there has to be a way to make a living for yourself while successfully helping other people, without selling yourself out, without compromising your integrity, without creating a fraudulent public image or using your body as ad space, and without servicing your own ego and that of others before the greater good. If you want the game to end, you have to stop playing.

But before I go, in my last parting words to all of you, I challenge you to do one thing and one thing only: give very careful scrutiny to those “spiritual” people you put your faith in. The ones with their professional photos who look like they’re “living their best life” on Instagram and Facebook, who talk about their dark times in vague generalities in a formulaic caption that always ends with something to sell you (or “Tag a friend and share with someone who needs to see this!”). The ones who say, “Look at me. Look at what I’ve done. Look at how much I’ve achieved. I can help you do the same…” for a price.

If the main message of their narrative is to learn from their success and not from their struggle, they’re not authentic. If the main message of their narrative is learn from their “struggle,” but they never present that struggle in true, vulnerable terms, they’re not authentic.

Look at them as a whole and ask yourself, “What is the overall feeling that this person leaves me with?” If the answer is a feeling of need, of lack, of envy, if you feel less successful by comparison, or pressure to be like them – they’re out of alignment with you.

Someone who is IN alignment with you will leave you feeling hopeful. Seen. Heard. Understood. You will identify with them. They will make you feel like you can do what they’ve done, not because they’re successful and they can teach you how, but because you identify with their struggle and it is evident in their words, actions, and demeanor that they do, in fact, continuously conquer it with grace and humility.

They’re covered in scars, not glitter. Those scars have given them the gift of depth. Of presence. Of Truth that radiates from the core of their being. It is felt. They don’t have to speak it.

That being said, I think this is my last post for a while. Maybe ever, or at least, under In My Sacred Space. I invite you to share it, far and wide, and not so that more people will follow me or so that I can get more potential customers, because I’m obviously not selling anything at this point. Share it because people need to wake the fuck up to who they’re looking up to and see beyond the illusion.

I plan to leave the site up, as there’s still a great deal of helpful content and many people who are still discovering it.

I don’t know where I go from here, but I’m sure there’s something waiting around the corner. It was fun while it lasted. I grew a hell of a lot. So much so, I’m not who I was when I started. I guess that means I get to start over, somewhere else, as someone new.

Maybe I’ll meet you there one day.

The Day I Threw My Career In The Trash

The Day I Threw My Career In The Trash

The Day I Threw My Career In The Trash

Let me tell you about the day I threw my career in the trash.

But first…let’s talk about how I got there.

After seven years of working full time in disgustingly toxic work environments doing anything and everything related to marketing, branding, and advertising (and I do mean EVERYTHING, from acting and voiceover work, to writing scripts, to account management, to SEO and online content, to graphic design, I have done it all), I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Every time I left a toxic environment out of desperation, I landed in one that was even worse. The pinnacle of this progression came when I was working for an ecommerce startup owned by a crack addict, coming home every day to drink an entire bottle of wine just to deal with the stress of being there.

It was at this point that my husband at the time pointed out, “You’re not yourself. You need to get a new job.”

At his urging and encouragement, I started my own business. Over the next four years, I grew that business to a level of success I’d never experienced while working for anyone else. At that point, toxic bosses became toxic clients.

A concept I’m very fond of is the bullshit-to-pay ratio. Are you being paid enough money to justify dealing with the existing level of bullshit? If the answer is no, there’s an issue. If the answer is yes, the situation is tolerable.

With the power shift of being a consultant and the added bonus of being paid decently, dealing with undesirable personalities was tolerable.

Incidentally, I began In My Sacred Space six months after starting my business. The two grew side-by-side over the course of the next four years.

One day, when I was sitting in a meeting with one of my clients and 3 employees, he looked at me and asked, “Do you want to run this business?”

I felt a wave of internal resistance. Not because I was afraid or thought I was incapable.

My ego said, “Yes! Do it! You’ll be the CEO of a fashion tech startup at 34.”

But my soul said, “This will suck every ounce of life out of you. And for what? You don’t even give a single fuck about fashion.”

That was when I realized my true passion was not for helping other people grow their businesses. It was for helping other people grow. Period.

My longterm goal at the end of 2016 was to put myself on a trajectory to be involved in personal development and spirituality full-time, slowly phasing out consulting as I continued to grow my passion project.

Then life, as it often does, happened. My single startup client that had grown to encompass my full business went AWOL on the same day that my marriage imploded. Four and a half months later, I packed up my shit, moved to New York City and started fresh with no friends, no job, and no plan.

Initially I thought I’d attempt to rebuild my business in a new place, which was certainly ripe with opportunities for someone with my skillset and I busily set about laying a foundation to do so in my first three months here.

One fateful day in September, I went to a meeting with a potential client – a fintech startup with four employees and $13M in funding. There was never a more perfect potential client. As I sat there, learning about their business, a gnawing dissatisfaction began to accumulate within me, not unlike the feeling I had the day it was suggested that I should run the fashion tech business I was working on. By the time the elevator had reached the lobby, I’d fully realized that I had absolutely no desire left in me to continue consulting.

I emailed them the next day and told them that I didn’t think we were a good fit to work together, shuttered my business, and went about seeking a full time job that required little mental and emotional energy but still allowed me to pay my bills while I focused on myself and the thing I actually cared about: personal development.

It’s been 18 months since I trashed my career, and I haven’t once regretted it.

The time out has provided me with the opportunity for necessary healing and personal growth. I haven’t yet gotten a full handle on what it is that I intend to evolve into when it comes to spirituality, but I do know that I’m pivoting away from a lot of things that I used to talk about in terms of metaphysics in favor of work that involves healing and personal development.

Thank you all for being on this ride with me, and I hope you’ll continue to stick around and see where this thing goes.

Confessions of Avoidant Attachment Personality

Confessions of Avoidant Attachment Personality

Confessions of Avoidant Attachment Personality

I’ve been more comfortable being alone for most of my life.

With the exception of a five-year marriage and the two years we dated prior to that, my longest relationship was six months. I had three of those, all before the age of 20, and then I was steadfastly single until I met my ex-husband at age 26.

Looking back, I can see how I mostly only allowed myself to be attached to people that it wouldn’t hurt to lose. The longest I can remember being upset about a breakup was two days when I was 17.

I was always the one who ended the relationships, and typically it was only after I’d let my unhappiness fester for so long that I couldn’t even stand for the other person to touch me anymore. I felt like I had to have a reason—the fact that I just wasn’t into the relationship anymore wasn’t good enough.

When I was 19 and had been with my boyfriend at the time for about six months, he asked me, point blank: “Where do you see our relationship in two years?”

Me, being the complete commitment phobe that I was, replied, “I have no idea. I don’t plan that far ahead. Where do you see our relationship in two years?”

He told me he hoped we’d be engaged. I broke up with him a week later, and never dated anyone longer than three weeks for the next six years.

At 28, I came into my marriage (with a once-divorced man who was 12 years older than me) having no real relationship experience. In retrospect, the fact that either of us thought this was going to work is somewhat absurd, but I suppose we were both still living in the fairytale fantasy that you meet someone who is perfectly compatible with you and live happily ever after—and we were highly compatible people, but compatibility is not synonymous with intimacy.

Up to that point, my M.O. was to avoid conflict for as long as possible, withhold my feelings, and ignore my needs. The truth is, I didn’t even know what my needs were, much less what I wanted in a relationship. Much like anyone in their twenties, I didn’t even know who the fuck I was.

In addition to having no real depth of understanding of myself, I never learned conflict resolution skills. I assumed my unhappiness was due to some fatal personality conflict, and ending the relationship and starting over with someone else seemed easier.

This, of course, led to a cyclical repetition of the same relationship scenario over and over, always with the same person wearing a different face, because I never took the time to stop reflect on myself or why it kept happening.

I would enter into a safe relationship with someone who accommodated my fear of intimacy and attachment, then I’d become dissatisfied with the lack of intimacy and attachment, then wait for an excuse—any excuse—to end said relationship. Lather, rinse, repeat.

 

 

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It wasn’t until I was 33 that I began to recognize my need for connection and intimacy, or how my own fear of it had led me to choose partners who couldn’t give it to me. This was also the same timeframe in which I began to see that I had no idea who I really was, culminating in the realization that the life I was living felt like it didn’t belong to me.

The last two years have been spent deconstructing anything about myself that didn’t feel authentic and patiently seeking that which was. You can’t possibly have a successful relationship with another person until you have achieved a successful relationship with yourself.

That’s what real personal development looks like: digging below the surface level interactions between you and your partner and uncovering the underlying subconscious motivations that drive your behavior—then working to heal it at the core, instead of continuing to apply bandaids.

Your twenties are for fucking up your life and your thirties are for seeing how fucked up your life is and committing to changing it—if, that is, you’re willing to do the hard work instead of continuing to repeat the cycle.


Note: This post originally appeared on my Instagram. I’ve been writing a lot over there and I’ll be sharing some of those posts here in the coming weeks. If you’re on Instagram, I’d love it if you’d pop over and hang out with me >>>click here<<< or on the embedded photo up there.

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