On Choosing Worthiness


Hello Warrior,

A few months ago, I almost closed the doors on my business for good.

I had the paperwork ready, was looking at opportunities in other industries, and found myself crying on the phone with my mom more times than I care to admit.

I had reached the rare point where the pain to continue as I had been operating felt greater than the pain to persevere. 

It wasn't one thing that led me to this place. In fact it wasn't even 5 or 10 things that led me to the mythical point of possible no return. No one to blame, no circumstance that caused it, no wound I could trace back to heal to turn things around. And it was beyond frustrating to have nothing but me, myself and I to figure it out. 

There was one thing though that kept me from closing the doors for good: My incredible, amazing clients and this community here.

A bigger why, a bigger message was tearing at the seams to come forward, and a slow realization that my messaging was changing began to emerge.... and everything that wanted to stay safe within me was revolting against the change.

Revolutions happen just this way:

A slow creep of discontent. A trickle of mini-deaths that slowly eat away at the soul. An ember that turns into a blaze that sparks a wildfire deep in the recesses of the heart.

Until eventually that fire becomes so painful we either need to be consumed by it, or learn to dance with it's flames.

On the night in question when I was ready to shut it all down, I had received an email- a client was going to be late on her payment, and I needed it to pay a large bill the next day. My big shiny new program that was supposed to be my winning ticket didn't do as well as I'd projected.

After a string of so-so performance on launches, my metaphorical well felt dry, and my spirit was questioning just how much faith was perhaps too much faith?

{Answer: too much faith is not even possible. If we feel like maybe it's too much, that's normally an indication we need even more}.

I had followed all the strategies- this time with every t crossed and i dotted. And it worked- just enough to keep me hooked into the system I had somehow found myself in.

But the Truth is, it wasn't a system I had chosen, but somehow had found myself in without even realizing it was happening. In fact, 9 years ago when I left my corporate finance job, I made three promises to myself:

1. I would never work Mondays again {because: freedom}

2. My mission is simple: To help others feel more ALIVE.

3. To always stay true to me, follow my own intuition, and to never follow 'the way things should be done'- above all other things.

And for the most part, this is exactly what I've done. Some Monday's I've worked because- well- sometimes we just need to. And my mission has remained more or less the same all these years, no matter the shiny brand it's attached to at the time.

But the staying true to my own intuition when evidence points to do things another way- that's been the hardest of them all. 

See when we start out on any adventure, we're all wide-eyed and ready for anything that comes our way. We take the risks, we make the leaps, we follow the whispers that take us exactly where we need to go, exactly when we need to be there.

And it's brilliant, and scary, and a wild fucking ride.

It's exactly how my business started out. I had no vision of being a coach or running an online lifestyle brand. I didn't even know they existed at the time!

Instead, I just knew that I wanted to help others feel better and live a life beyond what they thought was possible, and I was willing to do what it took to serve in that way. So I listened to the messages. I followed the signs. Signs that took me from yoga teacher trainings in San Francisco to retreats at Esalen, to more teacher trainings in LA and onwards to Bali- where my heart was blown wide open again and again and again. 

A four week trip turned into 7 months traveling across Southeast Asia, creating a real-life opportunity to follow my intuition with literally every single step I took {one of the first days there I didn't listen, and fell- HARD- splitting my hand open. That woke me up quick to the lesson at hand.} 

The only person I COULD trust on that trip was myself- and I was given a grand initiation into exactly that every single day.

When I returned to the United States, I was a changed woman. I knew myself. I knew what I wanted. I knew that I had a mission in the world and was willing to do whatever it took to make that happen. 

But what it took often felt like Herculean tasks. Living in a garage 'apartment'. Working 4 jobs while starting my business. Declaring bankruptcy. Starting at the bottom of the totem pole at studios, charging $30 for a massage, and more. Each step coming from a whisper, a deep knowing of:

Next this, now that, then on to this. 

But I did it, because... I had nothing to lose. And everything to gain.

I remember the night where I told friends in a study group that I knew I needed a larger apartment to up the ante on my private massage practice. I was clear. Within 12 hours, my landlord emailed me to say he was selling the house, and I had 30 days to move out.

I had no idea how I was going to pay for another place, had a brand new bankruptcy on my record, and didn't even have enough saved for a down-payment. All odds were NOT in my favor.

But deep down inside, I knew what I needed to do.

And I knew I was worthy enough to make it real.

And of course, I found exactly what I needed, had more than enough money to make it happen, and met an 88 year old landlord that became not only my saving grace, but a dear friend the 3 years I rented from her. 

Over the years this story repeats itself countless times. A clear knowing. A sign from the universe to move forward. A I-have-no-idea-how-I will-pay-for-this-and-pull-it-off moment. A leap of faith. A falling deeper into trust. A Rebirth. Expansion.

Rinse. Repeat.

But a funny thing started to happen. Imperceptible really.

As my business grew, as my mission expanded, as the bills got larger, as more of my dreams came true, THE STAKES GOT HIGHER.

The pressure was more intense. The risks became greater. No longer did they impact just me, but my family as well- my husband, my friends, the animals under my care, my clients, my brand.

Suddenly with so much more at stake- and ironically even more visible in the real world to prove it- the embodiment of my worth started to slip slowly downward.

It started with my wedding, strangely enough. The day where I felt more me, more powerful, more loved than any other time I could ever remember. At the ceremony I felt on top of the world {and we even played that song as we walked down the aisle}. At the reception I felt love emanating from everywhere in my being.

I was whole. I was loved. I was worthy.

But in the days that followed, I learned of things that had happened behind my back that day. I was confronted with triggered friends who made the day about them. I was faced with places where I had let my boundaries become weak that had consequences. I had to face the parts of me that still didn't believe I could 'Have it all."

And in the midst of this, I went from running a successful business based on faithfully following the whispers of my soul and knowings of my heart with nothing to lose, to all of a sudden having EVERYTHING to lose- and a deep fear around that becoming so.

It was so sneaky, so stealth, that I had no idea it was happening until the fateful night when I was 'this close' to shutting down the website and throwing it all away. And even that night, these words- this knowing- were not present. 

It was sneaky because, somewhere in the middle of 'Dreams Coming True' and 'Fear of Losing it All', I gave my power away to strategies, blueprints, and game plans. I had done it before over the years and course corrected quickly enough.

But the fear of losing everything became so great this time, the pace of the predator stalking behind me that could take it all away increased, and the tiny voice questioning if I was worthy of having it all became louder.

Worthy to have a successful business that also fulfilled me.

Worthy of being married to a wonderful man.

Worthy of my dream of owning a horse coming true.

Worthy of amazing friends who show up.

Worthy of living in my dream home in my dream town.

Worthy of an incredible family who supports me.

And so much more.

In the past I was great at letting those doubts remain quiet, but in the aftermath of a Rite of Passage that took me into the depths of Initiation, the voices became louder and louder. Until it became clear that not only was I succumbing to the almighty "I'm not Worthy" syndrome, but was operating my business out of alignment by listening to what 'the experts' I hired thought was best for me, instead of what I knew in my heart to be true.

So in some ways, I had to take a hard stop. I unfollowed all of the industry superstars. I left a group program for the first time in my career. I did not offer renewals to a few clients as their programs ended. I hid behind The Unbridled Life brand name to take the pressure off me.

I cried. And wept. And raged.

A lot.

I laughed when I received emails from peers that said 'It looks like you are thriving and SO busy lately' because well- it was the furthest thing from the truth. I had depleted my savings making my dreams come true the year before, and the coffers that were normally overflowing had not filled back up.

The irony: San Diego was in the midst of pouring rain for what felt like months on end, ending the drought that had plagued us for a decade- and here I was watching that endless rain feeling like my drought was just beginning.

And so the tears flowed like the rain. I heard of not one, not two, but at least FIVE women in the self-help/ coaching industry who committed suicide within a month. And I felt all of their grief and pain as I processed my own unraveling.  

Every month I prayed that all would be taken care of, and every month it was. Miraculously. Sometimes when the bills were due I had no idea how the payments cleared- almost as if angels had inserted just enough to make sure we were ok when we weren't looking. 

The guilt and shame became unbearable. Guilt at having it all. Shame that something obviously wasn't working all of a sudden after years of living so fully in the flow. Guilt to put my husband through this. Shame to even tell my friends- or oh my goodness the internet!- where I was.  

This afternoon I read an interview of Lucinda Chambers who has recently been fired by Vogue. In it she says,

"You’re not allowed to fail in fashion – especially in this age of social media, when everything is about leading a successful, amazing life. Nobody today is allowed to fail, instead the prospect causes anxiety and terror. But why can’t we celebrate failure? After all, it helps us grow and develop. I’m not ashamed of what happened to me."

Deep. Truth. To. The. Heart.

The crazy thing is- I hadn't actually failed. But somehow something in me felt like a failure, almost calling it in because how could it be possible to have all of my dreams come true? 

Finally I had to celebrate that part of me that felt so, and a boudoir photo shoot last week- part of the wedding package I took months to redeem- provided the venue for the party.

There was something about stripping down naked in front of a camera that helped me feel my full strength and power again. See my vulnerability as a strength. Stripdown all that I had to see once again that truly, there is never anything to lose.

And realize that even if we do fail at something, we still have our body to remind us that we are whole, we are free, we are Worthy.  

But as we know even when we feel free, failure {or even feelings of} can be like a bonfire that burns away all that no longer serves. And from the ashes rises the Phoenix who ushers in a new way of being, a new stage, a new light to shine.

From those ashes arose for me a realization that it's been time to tell this story, and introduce what has been birthed from the fires of my own rebirth.

And the truth is- during the few months I was in the thick of this, the only thing that kept me going was my clients- the sessions that brought me right back to myself. The intensives that reminded me that my mission is strong, and that I am changing lives daily. The words I wrote that if they rang true for even one person, kept me coming back day-after-day. 

It was my clients who kept me from giving up- and for those of you who are reading this, I am eternally, ever grateful for being teachers to me when I needed it most, even if you didn't know that's what you were doing. Thank you thank you thank you- More than you could ever possibly know.

Because it was this continuing to show up- when every metric of 'success' was telling me otherwise- that began to repair the leak in my soul that was draining my internal sense of worthiness faster than I could keep up myself.

Sometimes we need help.

Sometimes we need a lot of help.

And sometimes we need a motherfucking Revolution to get the job done.

And what it took was an absolute revolution- A Worthiness Revolution if you will- to turn this sinking ship around.

I won't get into the nitty-gritty in this post, but essentially this revolution was spearheaded by the Fierce Feminine within me.

The Fierce Feminine who introduced me to my power again in a whole new way.

The Fierce Feminine who showed me that motherhood shows up in a million different ways.  

The Fierce Feminine who gave me a channel to feel my rage.

The Fierce Feminine who taught me that unconditional love is just that- UNCONDITIONAL- and the softer we allow it, the more fierce the love can show up for us.

And the Fierce Feminine who forced me to take a hard look at an area where I WASN'T showing up, a dream I wasn't taking steps to fulfill, and held me down until I screamed mercy by committing to bring it to life. 

And that dream? The vision I've had for over 2 years now of running a high-level business mastermind about the way to do business from a place of embodiment, true power and flow.

So why was I holding back? Why did I feel so utterly Un-Worthy of bringing this dream to life?

Because my business story has not been a Cinderella story of meeting the right people, overnight success, massive launches or business besties.

My journey has been one of magic without a doubt. With that magic has come the alchemy of failure, of mistakes, of major triumphs, of visions coming true in miraculous ways- and so much more. And in that process, I've made close to a million dollars in revenue since starting at $25 a class teaching yoga. 

I know how to navigate both wild success AND massive failure- and I'm not afraid to keep putting one foot in front of the other day in and day out. I know that there will be peaks and valleys, and one successful launch does not a successful business make. 

But I know- one determined business owner can literally move mountains. And the more in her power she is- the more worthiness she embodies- the more unstoppable she becomes.

I've guided hundreds of entrepreneurs over the past 9 years in a private capacity to navigate their own journey with this, and now I'm ready to bring together a group of women who wish to navigate it all together.

It wasn't until I was ready to give it all up that I knew it was actually a time to go even deeper and finally pursue the dream that's been here for so long.