[2015]

wants upon a time…


i took this picture four years ago⁣
to the day⁣
january 3rd, 2015⁣


i remember this moment⁣
i wanted to capture it⁣


i was sad and pissed⁣
in a good way⁣
fired up⁣
about my own self⁣


i’d been working with a coach…
involved in personal development…
attending live events…
doing all of this for just over a year⁣…
and in this moment…
standing in the kitchen in my condo⁣…

i was done
pretending⁣
faking it⁣
acting like i was happy when i wasn’t⁣
i was done
with the bullsh*t
with MY bullsh*t


annndddd⁣
allow me to be ⁣
REALLY
REALLY
CLEAR⁣


standing there⁣
i didn’t have the answers⁣
i was struggling financially⁣
i was unfulfilled ⁣
i was working in a career i no longer wanted to be in⁣
i was uncertain of my purpose ⁣
i was unsure of my next moves⁣
i had no clarity on the how or the what or any of the specifics ⁣

AND⁣

the first step ⁣
the one i think folks frequently forget about ⁣
the FIRST step⁣
is the one where you get tired of your own bullsh*t

you get tired of hitting the wall you keep hitting⁣
you get tired of the sexy stories (lies)
the lies you’re telling
about how you’re fine
it’s fine
you’re happy
it’s okay
you’re okay⁣
you get tired
of being sick
you get tired⁣
of being so tired

because it’s from THAT point ⁣
that point where you’re done ⁣
that point when you’re really ready to put down the struggle ⁣
it’s from that point⁣
things can change⁣
and by things⁣
i mean ⁣


E  V  E  R  Y  T  H  I N  G⁣


i didn’t know…

four months after i took this pic i’d invest in a coaching certification⁣

i didn’t know…

one year after that i’d be a certified neruotransformational coach

and my friend
i didn’t have the capacity
i lacked the vision
to see that four years after i took this picture i’d be…⁣

happier than i ever imagined was possible⁣
fulfilled at a level i thought someone like me could never reach⁣
so on fire ⁣
fiercely passionate⁣
crazy wild ⁣
courageous⁣
in love with me⁣
in love with life⁣
in love with humanity ⁣
on purpose⁣
deep in my trust and knowingness that i’ve got me⁣


i knew people lived this way⁣
i’d heard of ’em⁣
i’d seen one or two ⁣
but i did not
SHE did not know it was possible for her⁣

she had no clue what was coming for her⁣
and friend, neither do you⁣

my invitation is to get in the work on yourself⁣
invest in your healing ⁣
THAT is what’s necessary⁣
that’s the answer to your struggle ⁣
it may not be the answer you’re looking for ⁣
it may not be the answer you want to hear⁣
but it is the answer⁣
the REAL answer ⁣
there are no shortcuts ⁣
no quick fixes⁣
no one-size-fits-all approach to your UNIQUE self⁣

you’re not broken⁣
you can heal ⁣
you can learn to love and trust yourself⁣
it is possible for someone like you⁣
i promise⁣
but i don’t know any of us⁣
who do it alone⁣

if you want to talk about what that would or could look like, ask⁣

if i’m not the one, find you someone⁣

your future self will thank you⁣


xo


who are you?

 

my friend…

i wrote this long post on instagram earlier and i’ve spent many moments today questioning.  wondering if maybe the post would’ve been better received had i put it here in the blog. i hear myself silently judging…

maybe it’s too long for the gram.  who is reading all this anyway?  no one cares.  this probably isn’t what they want to see… is it?

jeez.  when i tell myself THAT bullshit, disempowering story there’s only one thing i want to do.

HIDE.

i hear my old inner voice yelling, “retreat!  abort mission!”

the truth is, i am human and as a human, it’s super easy for my old stories to pop up.

i keep reminding myself of this truth while my brain contemplates taking the post down.

but i don’t.

why not?

because i’m experimenting.  i am playing with length, with language, with where and when and how i show up.  and there is no room for judgment in experiments.  just noticing.  then tweaking. then trying again.

plus, my gosh.  who can tell who sees what on social media anymore?!  there is so much out there that if you’re not intentional with deliberately searching for someone and their posts, well– you probably won’t see them.

so here’s what i shared earlier today:

{who am i}
I don’t know ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
You tell me ⁣⁣
I’ll be ⁣⁣
What you need ⁣⁣
Me to be ⁣⁣
To be ⁣⁣
Loved ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
I am ⁣⁣
Who I ⁣⁣
Pretend to be ⁣⁣
Scared to be ⁣⁣
The real me ⁣⁣
Safe ⁣
Under the mask ⁣⁣
I spent my whole life constructing ⁣⁣
⁣⁣
Getting to know ⁣⁣
The woman under ⁣⁣
Cover of protection ⁣⁣
Has been ⁣⁣
Messy⁣⁣
Has felt ⁣
Scary ⁣
I’ve felt ⁣
Angry ⁣
It’s been ⁣
Exquisite ⁣
⁣⁣
You’re in there ⁣⁣
You see ⁣
You’re just ⁣
Buried ⁣⁣
Beneath ⁣
Programmed  ⁣⁣
For protection ⁣⁣
Heart crying⁣⁣
For imperfection ⁣⁣
Soul dying ⁣⁣
For connection ⁣⁣

It is possible to unbecome ⁣⁣
Everything you’re not ⁣⁣
You can let⁣
The layers crumble ⁣
You can take ⁣
The mask off ⁣
You can allow ⁣
Everything you are ⁣⁣
To show ⁣⁣
To shine ⁣⁣
To glow ⁣⁣

Noooo⁣!!!!!!!!!!
They can’t know ⁣
They can’t see ⁣
Me exposed ⁣

⁣Please know⁣⁣
While this may feel scary ⁣⁣
The fear is only temporary ⁣⁣
The pain of pretending ⁣⁣
The weight of the mask ⁣⁣
The effort of the act ⁣⁣
Is slowly killing you ⁣⁣
Crushing your spirit ⁣⁣
Choking off your soul’s song ⁣
⁣⁣
You deserve ⁣
Life unleashed ⁣⁣
Freedom ⁣⁣
Happiness ⁣⁣
Love  ⁣⁣
Real love ⁣
Wild ⁣
Crazy ⁣
Unapologetic ⁣
Authentic ⁣
Deep love ⁣
From the inside out ⁣
⁣⁣
⁣My friend ⁣
You are love ⁣

⁣She is waiting ⁣
For you ⁣
Begging you ⁣
Please ⁣
Come home ⁣⁣

⁣Reunite⁣
With yourself ⁣⁣
By yourself ⁣⁣
Fall⁣
Into yourself ⁣⁣
Surrender ⁣
Trust ⁣
You’ve got you ⁣

for me?

the journey home has been truly magical, beautiful, and an incredible adventure– one i am still traveling.

writing my story has reminded me of so much pain i numbed out and avoided for so many years.

writing my story has also reconnected me to how much i’ve shed and unbecome over the past five years.

my deepest desire is to affirm hope.  wherever you are, whatever you’re going through– when you’re ready, you can heal.

 

you don’t have to pretend.  i promise.  and yet i know.

 

i remember how very alluring and seductive the mask can be and how positively scary the exposure can feel.  i know how terrifying visibility can feel and i know for many of us, our protection is rooted deep and has been for many, many, many years.

 

i don’t expect you to simply read this, rip the mask off, and show up as the real you all the time in every situation.  maybe that’ll be what happens, but if you’re like most of us, it’ll be a process.

 

your unbecoming will be a journey.

 

no matter how long it takes, you’re worth it.

no matter the effort required, you’re worthy.

 

and i’ll tell you what– it’ll probably take a lot less effort and energy and time than you think.

 

if there is anything at all i can do to help support you in the shedding of your layers i hope you’ll reach out.

 

you my sweet friend, you are not alone.

 

 

xo

 

It’s fine. I’m fine.

 

 

When you move to make a change in your life, your unconscious mind will resist.

“Nope.  We are not doing THAT.

She may lash out or rage.

She will dig her heels in.

She will scream.

“This doesn’t feel good!!!! I don’t like this at all!”

She does not, I repeat, does not want to change.

 

This feeling of massive resistance is natural.

It is totally normal.

It is all part of the process of change.

Resistance is embedded in the pavement leading to your dreams. The ONLY way to avoid the resistance is to step off the pavement.

 

Please don’t do that.

Please don’t quit on your dreams.

Most of us, upon feeling the resistance, will judge it as bad.

We’ll say that it’s wrong and assess that it shouldn’t be happening.

 

 

We’ll ask, “How do I stop this and how do I stop it right now????!!!!!!!”

So, we slam on the brakes.

We come to a screeching halt.

We allow our brain to convince us we are “fine”.

We allow our intellect talk us out of our dreams.

My coach implores, “Don’t let your mind convince your heart it’s happy when it’s not.” 

Here’s my invitation:  

Stay.

If you’re committed to doing the work to transform your life and live your dreams, there are going to be times where you feel uncomfortable.

Stay.

You will want to run away.

Stay. 

You might hear, “Psst.  Hide.  Bury it.”

Stay.  

You will feel the temptation to cover up.  You may want to mask with the pretty, polished perfection of “fine” and “good”.

Stay. 

Feel it. Feel all of it.  Feel the temptations.  Feel the resistance.

Sit in your uncomfortableness.  Let it wash over you.  Rub it on your skin.  Let it dry and cake so it may crumble away.

Feel it and stay in it.

Lean in.

And know that sometimes it will feel hard to lean.  I get it.  I’m not saying it’ll be easy.

I am saying, sometimes it will feel hard and I want you to choose to lean in anyway.  Stay anyway.

Change requires we do something new.  Getting out of our comfort zone calls for us to leave our comfort zone; this will require we get uncomfortable.

The uncomfortable feeling?  It’s normal.

You’re doing it right.

Don’t allow your brain to convince you to settle.

Don’t succumb to her lies.

For YEARS I said, “It’s okay. Whatever. It’s fine. I’m fine.” 

 

My growth required me to lift up the mask of perfection and ask myself the tough question:  Are you REALLY “fine”?

And the truth?  I wasn’t f–ing fine.

I’d just gotten used to things.  And that isn’t the same as “fine”.

 

Wanting to smack down the mirror as it’s being held up for you to look in is totally normal.

Want to smack it down and then stay.

It’s not going to be as hard as your brain is trying to convince you it will be.

It’s not going to be as painful as your mind will tell you it will be.

If your unconscious mind is anything like mine, she is a drama queen and a master catastrophizer.

Friends, consider this…

What if your freedom is right there…

So close you could practically touch it…

What if the heat you’re feeling means you’re near…

What if the yelling is loud because you’re so close to your freedom…

What if your doubts are the sign that you’re going in the RIGHT direction…

And you walk away?

 

 

Please don’t give up on yourself and your dreams as you cling to your lie about being fine.

 

 

 

It is absolutely okay to be okay.

But please don’t lie.

You cannot and will not heal what you refuse to look at.

Please let me know how I can best be of support.

You’re worthy.

She’s worth it.

 

xo,

michelle

 

When you don’t feel “merry” or “bright”…

 

 

I wasn’t in the mood for Christmas.  I simply was not feeling “merry” or “bright” this season.

 

I spent the morning of Christmas Eve sitting in my car with tears streaming down my face, feeling a sadness and a loss and a heaviness on my heart.  It felt different than I’ve felt before and I was worried about myself.  Was I depressed?  I’d been kind of down for the couple days prior and it seemed to be getting worse.

 

To be fully transparent, there were a few external factors that could have contributed to my mood:

  1. We didn’t decorate.
  2. We didn’t buy presents.
  3. We weren’t with family.

However, all of those were deliberate and intentional choices.

We closed on our first home just 3 days after Christmas and we had a lot happening this year.

SO…

  1.  Frankly, the thought of decorating was unappealing.
  2. Our monies were on lock-down due to the closing and any presents we were giving and getting were going to be after we closed and for our new home.
  3. Traveling to Ohio or Michigan or Maryland to be with family didn’t feel like the best choice this year and it wasn’t financially intelligent.

BUT…

With the exception of closing on the house, none of that stuff was “new” for us.

  1.  There have been years past where I wasn’t in the mood to decorate.
  2. There have been a few times over the years where we’ve been down and out financially and were unable to afford gifts.
  3. With family so spread out and jobs in the restaurant industry, there have been many, many years where we’ve not been with family during the holiday.

HOWEVER…

Despite all of the hiccups in the past, we’ve always had our traditions.  We bake cookies and make hot cocoa and drive around looking at neighborhood Christmas lights.  I make cinnamon rolls for breakfast and we talk to family.  We cook dinner, we have drinks, play games, and watch Christmas movies all day.

But this year I didn’t want to do any of it.

Not a single thing.

I just wanted to stay in bed, snuggled under the covers with my pups.

I felt super lonely and simultaneously wanted to be left alone.

 

I felt this emotional sadness until December 26th.  By late afternoon that day I felt better.  I could tell because there was a tangible shift in my energy.

So, while I know we’re now past Christmas and into the new year, I want to share what I did over those few days.

You see, life will deliver you many opportunities to feel overwhelmed and to feel pressured with expectations on how you’re “supposed to” feel.  There will probably be times where you’ll experience sadness, be in “a mood”, feel anxious, or simply find yourself in an unexplainable funk, and if you do, I want you to know there’s hope.

 

1.  I let a couple of people see the “real me”.

 

I allowed myself to been seen in my sadness by a few people I trusted and I knew would hold the space for me to just be.  I texted a friend and told her what was really going on with me.  I told another friend what I felt sad about and allowed myself to be vulnerable and honest with her when she came by work to wish me a Merry Christmas.

When you’re feeling down, it’s important that you don’t hide.  This part of you isn’t “bad”.  It doesn’t deserve to be shunned and punished.  It needs to be loved on and nurtured.

Start by giving that to yourself.  Give yourself permission to feel how you feel.  Tell yourself it’s okay, look in the mirror and say “I love you”, and take your right arm to your left shoulder and your left arm to your right shoulder and squeeze.

Next, find a safe space where you can be seen in your perfectly imperfect, messy, snot-nosed glory.  This might be with your Mom or Dad, a friend, a coach, a mentor, or an accountability partner.  You’re simply looking for a place or a moment in time where you can be who you really are and feel what you’re really feeling.  Oftentimes, you don’t need a discussion.  You simply need someone to know what’s really going on with you.  Another soul with whom you can share your authentic truth.

I am learning that part of emotional intelligence is recognizing that certain situations (my job) do call for me to “pull it together” because my emotional meltdown isn’t their problem, but that doesn’t mean I can’t tell a friend that I’m sad.

 

2.  I didn’t pretend to be happy.  

 

I didn’t put on a “happy face”.  I didn’t “fake it ’til I made it”.  When you’re in this space, I invite you to try and get neutral instead of trying to be happy.  Maybe you’re currently over in Funk-Town.  Please do not try to get to I’m-Super-Cheery-Ville.  In my opinion, it’s waaaaaay too far to travel.  When people ask how you are, you don’t have to say, “I’m awesome!” You can say, “I’m okay.”

There’s a balance between wallowing and complaining (something I do NOT recommend) and just being present with what is.  Oftentimes when we hide what’s real for us it comes from a place of feeling shame, guilt, or embarrassment.  We tell ourselves that we shouldn’t feel this way, that other people have their own problems, and that they don’t need to be “bothered” by us and our feelings.

Who you are and what you’re feeling is no bother.

Who you are and what you’re feeling is exquisite.

 

3.  I cried.

 

You’ve got to express yourself.  Cry, hit a pillow, throw a kicking and screaming tantrum, go to an arcade and throw or shoot something, journal, go for a run, take a kickboxing class, or do whatever else feels honoring to your soul.

Emotions are meant to be felt so they can be released.  No holding back here.  Personally, I cried.  Then I cried again.  Then again.  That’s what felt right to me.  There’s no right or wrong answer here.  You simply want to get the emotions moving.  Trust me, they don’t want to be lodged in your body anymore than you want them there.

 

4.  I rested.

 

When all else fails, take a nap.  Sometimes the only thing to do is close your eyes and catch some zzz’s.  It can often act as a pattern interrupt for the funk.  I’ve found that feeling sad is exhausting and sometimes the tired amplifies my sadness which leads to overwhelm and … {cue vicious cycle}.

You’re allowed to take a nap.

You’re allowed to get a full night of sleep.

You’re allowed to take care of you.

 

 

 

This wasn’t my first funk.  It won’t be my last.  What’s important is that we remember, “Feelings are just visitors, let them come and go.” We don’t have to attach a story about what they mean or what they’re saying about who we are.  We can just sit with them as they move through us.

 

What are the things that YOU do when you find yourself in one of these funks?  I’d love to hear from you!  Please share any questions or comments below.

Wishing you presence in this new year.

xo,

Michelle