Becoming Enough: An Author's Journey #1

As the new year begins, I am filled with gratitude that a dream is becoming true thanks to the support and generosity of so many people in my life. Creating and bringing a book into the world takes more than just one person. Like raising a child or birthing any creative project, it takes a village.

I am blessed and grateful to have a tribe of people who support me and can help me bring this book into the world. My successfully funded Kickstarter campaign is one small example of the power of the collective. Nearly 150 people pledged over $7,500 to make this book a reality.

Starting today, I desire to update you on the writer’s journey, sharing with you what it took to get here and what it feels like to take one step at a time as this book is brought into the world. In this update, I want to share with you a very brief overview of bringing this book into existence. This book is a long time coming. It didn’t start when I launched my Kickstarter campaign in October of last year. It started long before that with an idea, an inkling, an inspiration. This is how all things start. Like a seed was planted and it took months and years of being watered and receiving sunlight to blossom into the thing it is today. And, just like nature, it takes less doing and more being on my part than one might think. It’s not that I haven't done anything—but the practice is to get out of the way more than it is to make it happen.

Here is a very quick tour through what the journey has looked like up until this point in time and all of the incredible people who played an important role.

  • Michelle James serving as my Creative Emergence Coach served as my guide during a major transition in my life where I decided to face the fear and trust all will be well as I journeyed off on my own, paving my way to where I am today.
  • Alexandra Franzen's Tiny Book Writing Workshop. This day-long workshop gave me the courage and momentum to get my first book idea on paper and, eventually, finished.
  • Support of my mentor, Jeannine Yoder, and all of my sisters from Mentor Masterclass. Without this tribe of women in my life, I would not be where I am or who I am today. Their ongoing love and support over the past two years proved paramount to bringing this book into existence.
  • Working with Amy Biondini helped me get clear on what it is that matters most to me and how I desire to show up in the world.
  • Traveling, taking trips, and listening to my soul’s desires offered me the space to learn, grow, and begin organizing my thoughts in an inspirational way.
  • Hay House Writer’s Workshop offered me a platform to be inspired by other writers and see just how important sharing my story is with the world.
  • Steven Pressfield’s “Nobody Wants to Read Your Sh*t” and “The War of Art” served as two instrumental books in how I approach this book and the structure I have chosen to write into.
  • Finding my publisher, Jane Ashley of Flower of Life Press, was Divine. Meeting her not only brought a publisher into my life, it served as evidence how things Divinely unfold when we are in alignment and getting out of our own way.
  • The support of each and every person who contributed to my Kickstarter campaign (all 150 of you plus those who supported me energetically) provided me with the financial and emotional support to bring this book into the world.
  • Having a community of people at The Bakery who support me has been paramount, along with a special shout out to the videographer and creative genius behind my Kickstarter video, Tanner Chambers. It is people like this who make the creative process possible.

I am sure someone has gone unnamed or left off this brief list, not intentionally but simply because there are so many people who have made this possible and have supported me along this journey. Please accept my heartfelt love and thanks. You know who you are.

If you want to be sure to receive future updates on the book and special discounted early-bird opportunities to receive your copy, be sure to sign up here.

Finding Grace

grace

noun 

  1. unmerited favor.
  2. knowing that I am accepted, loved, and enough just the way I am.

This year, I had the sincere privilege of defining what grace means to me and write a story to exemplify this in an inspiring way. This definition served as the foundation for me to write my story which became part of the #1 best selling book, 365 Moments of Grace, which was released earlier this week. 

This is a realization of a practice I started doing last year—declaring my "I am's" while lying in bed before going to sleep. A practice I learned from Wayne Dyer's book, Wishes Fulfilled. And the power of the "I AM's" is mighty indeed! Here I am: a published author. I couldn't be prouder! 

I hope you enjoy my story and are inspired by the simplicity of the realization that struck me while on the subway. There are plenty more like it inside the book which I invite you to check out.

Epiphany on the F Train 

After quitting my job and exploring what it was I wanted to do and create and how I wanted to serve others, I was standing on the F train in New York City when it struck me: What if it’s not about doing more or being better; what if it’s about being good with being you?

This became my mantra and, though I didn’t know it at the time, my personal and professional mission for the next 365+ days. This was not just a pivotal moment for me; it was a whole new way of looking at the world and at my life.

Ever since I was a little girl, I looked for ways to improve myself, thinking that if I shaved the hair off my arms, then I would be accepted; if I got better grades, then I would be enough; if I figured out why I am the way I am, then I could finally “fix” it and be lovable.

I have always had this knack for self-improvement. I just love to pick up a good self-help book, curl up on the couch, and mull over all the ways I have been doing it wrong. I certainly don’t believe that personal growth is a bad thing – after all, change/growth/evolution is the only constant! The thing is, though, I spent the past 30-some years forgetting a crucial part of this: grace. Unmerited favor. Knowing that I am accepted, loved, and enough just the way I am. There is nothing I can do for this to be more or less true.

It’s all too easy for me to make things bigger, better, and faster, which is why it was so important for me to consciously set that aside and practice the thing I had neglected my entire life – love and acceptance of who I am, exactly as I am. Without this, any pursuit simply reinforces the false belief that I am not already a masterpiece and am only a never-ending work-in-progress that is not quite yet deserving of love and acceptance.

This new understanding is not the end of the story for me, and I am ready for the next stage in my evolution – but this time I know that it will include a whole lot of self-acceptance, love, and grace.

If you're interested in learning more about this book and what an incredible opportunity it has been for me and the other 250+ authors, I invite you to read more on Dan Teck's blog. He and his wife, Jodi Chapman, are the inspiration behind the 365 Book Series—a brilliant way to inspire, uplift, and remind us of just how magical our world is and how connected we truly are. 

What It Means to Create

I’ve been in such a mode of creation lately—writing articles, doing interviews, recording free videos, hosting a live radio show. I suppose you could say I'm planting my seeds.

It is so clear to me just how cyclical or ever-changing things are as I observe what this feels like and reflect on other times where the exact opposite was the case. 

I share this because it can be all too easy for me (and I suspect maybe for you, too) to feel like I’m not contributing enough or creating enough or doing enough. Yes, the same theme … again. So, I start to notice when that isn’t true for myself, time and time again, developing the awareness that everything ebbs and flows, nothing lasts forever.

Ironically, amidst all of this creation, I was having a conversation with a dear friend of mine last week and noticing a belief I was having as she was sharing with me—how I’m not creating because I’m not earning money.

Since she is so in tune with her own inner wisdom, she asked me what it means to me to create.

This question hit me like a ton of bricks. 

I noticed that a part of me at that moment in time thought that in order to be a creator I have to be making money.

But once I got quiet and noticed that thought pass by, it became much clearer to me how I create in so many other ways: the content I create, the experiences I create, the connections I create, the feelings I create, the thoughts I create, the opportunities I create.

Perhaps you have a belief about what it means to create or be a creator in your life that is also keeping you stuck in thinking it has to look a certain way.

You don’t necessarily have to do anything with those beliefs other than notice them, bring awareness to them. Sometimes that is all it takes to then notice the other deeper beliefs that live within us, too.

So, as in honor of this creation that is all around me lately, I asked if I was to create yet one more thing this week for my Thoughtful Thursday, and the answer I received was, “no.” 

Instead, I want to share and celebrate with you one the other exciting things I am experimenting with and creating with the intention of being inspired (“in spirit”) and inspiring others.

My current passion project is the new iteration of my Being Inspired radio show. I have hosted a couple of episodes so far and it has been such an honor and incredible opportunity for me to serve and continue walking my talk. I am also excited for it to continue to evolve and invite other inspirational guests on the show in the coming months, so be sure to stay tuned.

If you haven’t yet had a chance, I invite you to check it out. I’m live every Tuesday at 7pm CT. Just go here to listen live or to any previous episode. Plus, you can follow me here so you can be kept up to date of all new episodes.

Plus, I desire to start using my Thoughtful Thursdays as an opportunity to answer YOUR questions—you know, those things you find yourself doubting or wondering about. So, if you have something you’d like to ask and have answered, send me an email with your question. It would be my honor to offer any insights and inspiration I have tailored specifically to you.  

The 3 “P’s” for a Happier Life

The 3 “P’s” for a Happier Life

Now that it’s been over two years since I quit my full-time job, I’ve had lots of time to learn what it means to be my own boss. Through the creation of my own business, I’ve gotten to see common themes and patterns emerge that are incredible teachers to me.

Of course, it’s not just in my business that these lessons show up. 

I’m noticing how there are three important things I am consistently being asked to practice more and more often in my business and in my relationship with my partner and with myself.

In today’s video, you’ll learn the three things to practice whether you’re starting a business, in a relationship, or simply looking to live a more expansive and happier existence.

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Embrace or Resist: An Unceasing Decision

I sometimes catch myself worrying that I keep sharing the same reminders over and over again. Perhaps the content changes slightly but the message or lesson remains the same.

But then I realized that there is a reason this happens—because this is what it means to live with our ego’s constant attempts to “figure it out” or “finally get there.”

And part of this journey is embracing all those times when we don't (and surrendering to the reality that we never will time and time again). This is my ongoing practice: can I surrender even more or will I choose to dig my heels into the ground and hold on for dear life?

In today’s video, you’ll learn the question I continuously ask myself as I continue on this journey (with no attachment to the outcome).

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Life-Altering Lessons Learned from the Sacred Valley

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Many of us are on a journey. For some of us, it is a physical journey traveling or nomad-ing around. For others, it is an inner, spiritual journey. And for some of you like me, it’s a combination of both.

As some of you may know, I am in the beautiful and sacred land of Peru where I am spending three weeks traveling and participating in an Embodying Love retreat (hosted by the incredible Cora Poage and Ginny Muir) and exploring the mystical and magical parts of this exquisite country (along with my inner world). And, what a powerful trip it has been!

Not only have I been blown away by the beauty of the land and the people of this country, but I have also been blown away by the lessons that this trip has in store for me.

In today’s blog, I share the top lessons this land has taught me during my time here on retreat as I reconnected with the Earth, my Inner Light, and experienced Divine Love on a cellular level.

If you’re anything like me and have ever found yourself wondering if you’re deserving of receiving this kind of love, I invite you to read today’s blog and be reminded of just how deserving you are and what exactly it takes (and doesn’t take).

As a lifelong member and current President of the Soulful Inquirer Club, I have gathered a lot of lessons and timeless reminders over the years. I’m always on the lookout for a new awareness or a-ha moment as I continue to reveal more and more of my True self.

It never fails to surprise me that many of the lessons we learn aren’t new lessons but rather ageless reminders that we’ve heard many, many times before. And so it was the case as I uncovered even more of my True self in the depths of the Sacred Valley in Peru. The lessons I learned here weren’t necessarily new but they resonated with me on a whole new level.

The thing I want to share most with you is that we are all deserving of Divine Love (with a capital “L”).

I was reminded on a deep, deep level that while there is a price of admission, there is one thing we do not need to buy into which totally blew my mind (and might blow yours, too).

So, what’s the cost (and what’s the belief we can give up once and for all)?

We do not need to suffer.

Yep, that’s right.

I know it might go against nearly every grain in your body—at least it did (does) mine. 

It became crystal clear to me just how undeserving I have felt of Divine Love because I haven’t suffered enough. I can recall all the times I told myself (and others) that I haven’t had enough tragedies or never “hit rock bottom” and, because of this, I developed a story that I wasn’t deserving. 

To top it off, because I hadn’t yet suffered enough (and believed I had to), I decided I needed to create more suffering in my life. I certainly couldn’t just go around as if everything was hunky-dory or enjoy life!

The lesson that hit me like a ton of bricks is the Truth that suffering is not a requirement to receiving the love, peace, and ease that each and every one of us are innately deserving.

While this may require a shift in paradigm or creating a whole new story, I invite you to really hear these words and see where in your own life you either feel undeserving or possibly even create suffering due to a belief like this.

Now that we have been reminded of what we no longer need to do to receive this Divine experience, let’s take a look at what is required of us. (We’re not off the hook completely.)

We do need to commit to radical self-responsibility.

As the youngest of four, it’s been all too easy for me to say those magic words more than once: “It wasn’t me."

My desire and ability to off-load responsibility at any opportunity has been pretty comfortable and easy for me for much of my life. However, what I’m learning more recently is that as I begin to see myself as a co-creator of my reality, taking responsibility is part of the game.

We are all deserving of love, peace, ease, and experiencing what it feels like to experience more of our True selves. The price of admission for this incredible ride includes taking full responsibility for each and every one of our choices. This may not always feel natural or comfortable, but the alternative is much less desirable. 

As we begin to take full responsibility and get out of our victim mindset (which the ego just loves!) we lighten our load and we begin to experience our own power. We acknowledge that we are responsible for how we feel, how we react, what we choose to do (or not do), and for all of the incredible love, peace, and ease we co-create in our lives.

Something I invite you to ponder is: Where are you not claiming responsibility in your life? What’s one thing you can take full responsibility for in this very moment?

The price of admission for Divine Love isn’t suffering; it’s radical self-responsibility. {Tweet that!}

One of the first things we can do is take responsibility for the suffering we have created in our lives and then, lovingly, choose a new way. 

We do not gain brownie points for being miserable and our suffering does not diminish the suffering of others—it simply keeps us from providing the love and light that is necessary in those situations.

Now that we have been invited to let go of the belief that we are not deserving unless we suffer, let’s commit to radical self-responsibility. I invite you to join me on this radical quest to notice all the ways we create our own reality and choose our own circumstances. While it may feel a little scary at first, I promise you the empowerment experienced far outweighs the fear.

After you’ve read the blog and reflected on the questions posed, share your commitment to choosing responsibility over suffering in the comments below the blog.

And, if you know someone who could benefit from being reminded of their deservingness and experience more love and peace through their own empowered choices, please share this with them.

With love & devotion.

How to Use Your Tools & Stay True to You

As a student of life, a self-help junkie, and a soulful inquirer, I’ve read a lot of books, taken a lot of courses, watched a lot of videos, and listened to a lot of podcasts. In the course of this, I’ve acquired hundreds of tools and pieces of advice—everything from meditation (in all its forms) to drinking hot lemon water to keeping a gratitude journal to reciting mantras to inquiring my thoughts to visualizations to doing yoga to many, many more.

And as an over-achieving student and dedicated disciple, I take these tools and teachings to heart and do my best to use each one and get (what a dear friend and mentor Cora Poage recently said) an A+ on my spiritual report card.

Perhaps you can relate.

It seems like everywhere we turn nowadays there is a new tool or technique or piece of advice that someone is offering us. For me, this can sometimes feel overwhelming, discouraging, or even distract me from the very thing I am trying to experience (such as relief, peace, or ease).

In today’s video, I share a fresh perspective to help bring us back to our center and experience that which we seek.

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The Only Tried and True Formula for Success

There is so much incredible information out there and thought leaders and teachers who share with us their tried and true formula for success.

As a self-help junkie and soulful inquirer, I can get into this loop that there’s only one way to do something (and if someone’s already figured it out then I’d better just do what they did—down to the letter) OR I get frustrated when I don't “get it right” or it won’t work for me.

I’m guessing I’m not the only one who has ever felt this way. 

We are bombarded by formulas and recipes and get-fill-in-the-blank-quick fixes.

Whether it’s from Kris Carr, Marie Forleo, Michael Hyatt, Brene Brown, Deepak Chopra, or a million other incredible teachers, there's a lot to learn from what has worked well for these incredibly successful individuals. And it's wonderful that people share their lessons learned in an easy to understand structure or format. 

However, there’s also a common trap that can occur.

In today’s video, I share what this trap is and how we can avoid it based on an important timeless reminder.

If you’re anything like me and have found yourself thinking there’s only ONE way to do something or other people know better than you, I invite you to watch today’s video and be reminded of another formula for success. 

The next time you find yourself thinking that there's only one way to do something or thinking someone else knows better than you, pause and see if you can instead take the various ingredients and start to experiment with what works best for you and your unique tastes.

Experimentation is the only consistently tried and true formula for success. {Tweet that!}

Now, it’s your turn! Think of a time when you experimented recently and how did it go? Share your thoughts in the comments below so we can all be reminded of just how essential and successful experimentation truly is. 

If you happen to know someone who could benefit from hearing this essential timeless reminder and move beyond limitation or frustration, please share this with them.

How to Handle Those Pesky Voices in Your Head

As a former actor, I’ve always enjoyed creating characters and learning who they are and what they have to say, and then getting to speak as if I were them.

Over the past few years, as I’ve worked with coaches, mentors, and done more self-discovery, I’ve been introduced to the different characters that play out their drama in my very own mind.

We all have these characters (or voices) that live inside our head and who try to be in constant dialogue with us (and each other). Many times these voices can really get the better of us.

Recently, I noticed that one of these voices of mine (my inner critic) started telling me that I’m not working hard enough and I’m starting to slip into an old pattern of giving up and not seeing something through to the end.

In the past, I would have either believed this voice hook, line, and sinker and gone into total panic or self-loathing, or I would have tried to stifle this voice and pretend it didn’t exist.

Now, after having learned a more effective tool based on my work with Michelle James (a Creative Emergence coach), I have an alternate approach to handling the voices in my head.

If you’re anything like me and sometimes have a hard time knowing what to do when that voice starts yammering on about this fear or that doubt or this concern or that judgment, be sure to watch today’s video where you’ll learn a new approach (and one that has helped many of my clients, too). 

Though they can be pesky, the voices in our head can offer us a lot of wisdom if we change how we interact with them. {Tweet that!}

The next time you hear those voices rattling on and find that simply observing them just isn’t doing the trick, give this tool a try and see if you feel a shift and notice the voice getting a little less pesky over time.

Now it’s your turn! What is your favorite tool for handling the voices in your head? Share in the comments below so we can all have a few more tools in our tool belt when it comes to engaging with our egos.

If you know anyone who could benefit from being free from the grips of the voices in their head and uncover the wisdom that lies within, please be sure to share this with them.

With love & gratitude,

P.S. If you desire to have someone serve as your guide as you experiment with this tool (and many others), go ahead and grab a complimentary session with me here.

How to Make Peace with Uncertainty

Being a nomad brings with it a lot of uncertainty. Of course, uncertainty is not unique to a nomad—all of us experience uncertainty from time to time. 

Having had quite a few experiences with uncertainty throughout my life, I spent some time reflecting on how I have learned to get more cozy with it and feel more empowered than I ever did before.

Here are a few things I’ve learned that might help you make peace with uncertainty.

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What I've Learned about Being Enough

I’ve done a lot of “soul searching” and learning how to “fix” myself over the course of my life and most of this brought me to a realization (or rather a story I chose to believe) that I’m not good enough.

Here’s the thing. Over the last few years, I’ve come to terms with the fact that I’ve always been enough, and it’s not about “fixing” it’s more about “releasing” that which no longer serves me or the higher version of myself.

Still, that doesn’t mean every day is a cake walk. I still have doubts and the questions, “Am I good enough?” and “Who am I?” still creep in.

If any of this rings true for you, I invite you to watch today's video as I share with you part of my real and raw story of what I’ve learned from not being enough.

Just because certain stories feel real sometimes doesn’t mean they are true. {Tweet that!}

And so even if my life isn’t “perfect,” I still have something valuable to share because I believe we are all lightbulbs shining light on the collective unconscious and the more lightbulbs we turn on, the better we all can see.

Now it’s your turn! What’s your story? What have you learned about being enough?  Leave a comment in the Facebook post or below this blog. I'd love to support each other as we get real and raw.

Shine your light in whatever way you want. Know that you have everything within you. You are enough. {Be a lightbulb and tweet that, too!}

With love & gratitude,

Amanda

PS If you haven't already heard the exciting news, you can now get a copy of my FREE ebook that explores this whole idea a whole lot further. Get your copy today!

What to Do When Someone (Who Isn't a Disney Princess) Says, “Let it Go"

“Let it go! Let it go!!"

Not just the lyrics to any current 5-8 year old girl’s favorite Disney song. This is also a mantra of sorts for most adults. 

The intention is all good, but sometimes the phrase itself can seem dismissive, flippant, or full-on aggravating.

I know for me, when someone says, “Just let it go,” I want to punch them in the face.

Okay. No, not really. That’s not at all my style. But you get my point. It can seem WAY easier said than done.

So, what does “let go” really mean and how do we go about doing it?

The question of learning to let go came up as a response to my survey and is a very common question as we are on this journey of awareness and awakening. (If you are curious to which survey I’m referencing, check it out here.)

In this video, I share my perspective on what “letting go” means to me and just how to go about doing it in a way that keeps most punching unnecessary. (Watch the video if you want to know why I didn’t say “all!”)

By redefining what “letting go” means we can redefine our relationship and experience with it. {Tweet that!}

Now it’s your turn. What is your favorite thing to do when you feel the need to "let it go?"

Hop on over to the blog to share your wisdom in the comments below this video! I absolutely love learning what works for others and your tip might be just the thing someone needs to hear today.

So many of us hear the phrase "let it go" so often—yet how many of us actually practice this in a way that is healthy and supports our expansion into deeper awareness? Please pass this along to anyone who rolls their eyes at or feels disenchanted when they hear "Let it go!" or who might benefit from learning just how to experience less frustration and more ease.

With gratitude ...

PS If you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign up here to receive my dirty little secrets to loving the life I have AND be the first to find out about an exciting announcement I’ll be making soon! 

Are You Tired of Experiencing the Same Challenges Over and Over Again?

Recently, I caught myself acting in a way that I am not extremely proud of. I got triggered by something that has triggered me many times before and I reacted in a way that I've reacted many times before.

Have you ever experienced that?

Well, here's what happened next. After this undesirable behavior occurred and when I later told my friend about what happened, I noticed that instead of beating myself up about it (as I have been known to do in the past), I was quite compassionate with myself and recognized it as something that happened and moved on.

This was huge for me!

It was one of the first times I recognized that it's okay that I get triggered or behave in ways that are less than ideal. I'm going to have bad days. 

What I'm learning is that it’s not about living a life without any challenges or stumbling blocks; it’s all about how we now respond to these challenges as they arise.

If you're anything like me and sometimes get frustrated with thinking you've "figured it out" and wonder why the same issue keeps tripping you up, then check out this video.

In this video, I'm going to explore why we experience the same challenges over and over again and how we can go from feeling frustrated to feeling free.

The sign of growth isn't being free of obstacles—it’s responding to them with more love, compassion, and resilience. {Tweet that!}

Now, I'd love to hear from you.

Do you ever find yourself frustrated when you encounter the same challenge because you thought you already had it “figured out”? Instead of focusing on the challenge, share with us how you now respond differently than you did before.

I'd love to see what you discover, so please take a moment and share in the comments' section below this post. What you share might be exactly what someone else needs to hear today.

Challenges are not going to disappear. Once we accept this, we can begin to notice how growth and evolution are indeed occurring. So please pass this along to anyone in your life who you think might benefit from being reminded of how we can experience more freedom and less frustration in order to truly love the life we have!

If you desire more support in experiencing less frustration and seeing where you are already expanding in your life, I invite you to sign up for one of my complimentary discovery sessions.

P.S. I'm getting giddy with excitement to make a big announcement which I don't want you to miss so be sure to sign up if you haven't already!

With gratitude...