A “rantifesto” about MISTAKES

 

Tara Sage SteevesMaybe it’s got something to do with me being 40 years young. Or maybe it’s the culmination of decades of metaphysical searching and psychological study. I’m pretty confident the thousands of people I’ve coached and/or “workshopped” over my 11+ years in biz has at least got something to do with it. Maybe it’s all the listening and personal stories that I’ve heard. It’s also likely thanks to the many cross-cultural experiences I’ve had and the traveling I’ve done…

Whatever the case, I AM SO *OVER* THE WHOLE PARADIGM OF CONCEPTUALIZING THINGS IN TERMS OF MISTAKES. (Except maybe if you break it down to “mis-take”. As in, simply take another take…)

But otherwise, “mistake” and “wrong” are basically synonymous, and I’m done with that. I truly don’t see choices made – especially after the fact – as either right or wrong anymore. I’m over attempts at fitting the things I’ve done, and the changes I’ve made, into rigid little judgement-filled, “should” and “shouldn’t” categories of regret.

Are YOU?

And, oh, I’ve done *plenty* of “oops” stuff in my life. (How do you think I got so wise? Smile!)

Trust me, I have taken many-a-turn down streets that I backed the heck out of soon after (the one-way kind), and others that were maze-like detours that took some serious navigation to find my way.

But nonetheless, I have grown to love my mis-takes. I mean it.

And I’ve learned that shame need not be a badge you wear as proof that you learned a lesson. Seriously.

If anything, wear a great big bright and colorful badge of self-forgiveness, self-love, personal freedom, and a sense of humor. That is, in my opinion, the best possible outcome of any “mis-take”.

Wrong turn? Big whoopin’ deal. Really. I mean, so what? Now you know. Choices made were made from the level of understanding you had at the time. And when you know better you do better. So, once you know => time to hire a stellar life coach and head in a new direction. [shameless plug I’m not sorry for Smile!]

And, be honest: More likely than not, it probably wasn’t ALL “wrong”, so don’t throw it all out the window unless that’s truly where it belongs. More likely, is that you now have a whole lot more detail and nuanced clarity about what’s a fit for you from here. This is great news. Now go make it happen.

And while you’re at it, don’t hold toooo TIGHT to the new vision, because unnerving as it is, this’ll likely evolve and change too. As long as you’re alive you’re going to continue to grow and change and it only makes sense that your vision will change with you. Once you get wherever “there” is, there will always be another “there” to get to. There’s no guarantee that what fits ‘just right’ NOW won’t be something you’ll outgrow later. (Sorry/You’re welcome. Smile!)

And if that happens, it’s just time for (yet another) do-over. I’ve personally coached people ages 21-74. It is NEVER too late to say this is ‘not it’.

From my perspective, this is what being alive is all about. Our world is the laboratory and you and I are the (sometimes mad) scientists. The more lightness and kindness you bring to your experiment called LIFE and its inevitable moment-by-moment unfoldings, the better. Well, that is, assuming you want joyful results.

Please understand: I am not in any way minimizing how difficult the process of moving through such awareness can be, and what’s really involved on the twisty-turny road to playful-living, self-love and self-forgiveness. Having been there, helps me coach others through it. No text book I know of teaches this. I know first-hand how “recalculations” can have some dramatic practical-level and relational-level impact (a.k.a. be extremely messy).

BUT – it’s still all just a big experiment! There’s no eventual “arrival” in the seat of it’s-all-done-now perfection. Until maybe when you’re dead. But you are alive – and so am I – and that means we are all meaning-making, change-making, improvisational manifesters and creators-of-our-own-experience. And not-a-one of us is 100% certain about what the heck we’re doing, or what exactly will result from it.

It’s about being fully alive in the BECOMING.

It’s about living full out.

It’s about going for your dreams, no matter what.

It’s about being a work in progress every minute of every day.

It’s about putting fear in it’s place (in the trunk, not at the steering wheel).

And ultimately it’s about you being YOU because, frankly, you are the world’s leading expert on your heart’s deepest, and evolving, desires.

Be your best and brightest version of you, as often as possible. Cliche as it may be, dance like noone’s watching – and dance like everyone’s watching, because really: who cares. I believe it’s also about leaving a legacy of as much JOY and good juju as you can. If for no grand mission-oriented reason, do it because it’s nice to be remembered well.

Rant over. Thank you. Feel free to take the microphone from here. Smile!

Pregnant With A Dream: Meeting Lisa Nichols

Are YOU Pregnant With a Dream?  Now, I don’t mean a baby – but rather a dream that you KNOW you are meant to bring to life, to birth something that *if you don’t* you’ll always wonder what could have been…

In the words of Marianne Williamson “Each of us is pregnant with a better version of ourselves.”

So true.  I know first-hand what it feels like to have dreams that scare the bejesus out of me, and to simultaneously know that I *MUST* bring them to life, despite my sometimes overwhelming fear. That’s why I wrote the book, Are You Pregnant With a Dream?

As life coach and founder of Create Your Life!, I know what it takes to go from Fear to Freedom, and I have coached hundreds, soon to be thousands, on the magic and momentum that takes hold when my 9-step Dream Acceleration(TM) Process gets activated.

In September 2013, after watching a YouTube video of Ms. Lisa Nichols speaking (she was in the movie The Secret, a Chicken Soup for the Soul author, founder of Motivating the Masses, and so much more…) a dream was activated in me: I wanted to meet her.  Not in a celebrity-crazed-kind-of-way.  But in a … this-woman-is-powerful-and-the-real-deal-and-I-feel-absolutely-compelled-to-do-whatever-I need-to-to-meet-and-talk-to-her kind of way.  And, proof to the power of a dream-in-action, just two short months later, it happened! 

Here are some “selfies” that Lisa Nichols and I took after a little heart-to-heart.

(Read more on what’s extra-special about THIS photo below.)

And here’s one of her working her magic on stage:

A quick aside about that second photo of us standing in front of the Lisa Nichols poster:

I noticed that, in the poster, she has braces on her teeth – and I asked her about it.  Now, really, do you think she could have had that photoshopped out before blowing it up into a great big stand-on-it’s-own poster?  Shoot. Let’s be honest … I would’ve!

Of course she could have!  BUT – she had braces when the photo was taken, so that’s what’s in the picture.  How’s THAT for a little window into how *REAL* this woman is.  🙂

It was a true honor and a privilege to not only meet her, but even more … after our off-stage connection, there was a moment (during the height of her guiding the room through a mind-blowing belief transformation process), that I SAW her.  And – she saw me see her.

People were shouting and crying and doing all kinds of wild, free and full self-expression … an experience that left every person in that room forever changed …

She did what only the best speakers do: she got herself out of the way.  And in that moment, I SAW HER, with tears in her eyes, as the room was divided into our small groups doing the exercise she had given us to do.  She and I locked eyes.  It’s was a pregnant pause.  Beautiful beyond words.  One that I will never forget it.

Thank you, Lisa Nichols. Thank you Universe of Possibility.  It’s good to be alive.  It’s not always easy – but it’s so so good…  We are absolutely in this together.

So, again, may I ask … Are YOU Pregnant With a Dream?

May your dreams always inspire more than they intimidate.

Love and blessings,

Tara

Basement & Bathtub Mojo

Joy to you!

Those of you who know my story, know that my dream realization mojo really kicked into gear from the depths of the dark, musty, basement apartment where I lived … for 3 years!

bathYep. At the time, I was absolutely drowning in debt and I spent most Friday and Saturday nights with my cat. Trust me, the metaphor was not lost on me that my basement “digs” were a constant reminder that I was LITERALLY underground. Yet, it was there that I started to dream … determined and believing that that there had GOT to be a better way!

I used to look out my tiny-tiny window – with the view of the sidewalk and the tires of cars passing by – and I’d dream. While I didn’t know it at the time, this is where seeds of Create Your Life! were born.

Now, not only was my apartment in a basement, it had a teeny-tiny *black* bathroom – yes, black paint(!) was on the walls. (Trust me, I thought many times about re-painting, but I simply couldn’t stand to be IN there long enough to repaint it!)  My teeny-tiny black bathroom, of course, had a stand-up shower.  Oh, how I DREAMED of a bathtub!!

So when I *finally* moved out – and bought a house (which is another story for another time) – a bathtub was one of my non-negotiable requirements. And to this day, I love and cherish my bathtub.  It is, to me, a sacred place of respite. A few candles, some bath salts – sometimes a glass of wine – and my bathtub becomes an at-home spaaaaaaahhh…  A mini-vacation. No packing or travel required.

How ’bout you?  What is the ultimate retreat for you? What are some of the ways you give yourself a delicious break? How do you create sacred, rejuvenating time for yourself?

Do YOU need a vacation? Or, at the minimum, a break for some “you time” to unwind, to regroup, to rejuvenate?  And really … who couldn’t benefit from having more R & R?

Do You Dream of Time OFF?

Taking time off is an important part of holistic self-care and well-being. Here in the U.S., summer is fast approaching …a common time for long weekends with family and friends, days at the beach, boating, camping, hiking, gardening, barbeques, and just kickin’ back for some rest and relaxation!

Sound refreshing and inviting? Comforting and balancing? Or does it create a feeling of inner confusion and anxiety … wanting to take time off but fearing that there will be a high price to pay?

vacaWhen was the last time YOU took an honest vacation? When was the last time you truly “unplugged” from the daily grind and felt renewed, refreshed, and invigorated?

Imagine YOU … not working … and not even thinking about work.  Your energy is instead fully available for other things. It might be an hour, a weekend, a week, or a full month!  Either way, it’s precious and delightful time OFF!

Have YOU taken time off yet this year? Do you have plans for time off in the coming months? It’s not too late (or too early) to start planning and schedule this time on your calendar – you could do this right now.  Why not take this opportunity to sit down with your calendar, decide on and then DO whatever needs to be done to support YOU having some time off?

Notice: What’s coming up for you?  Are you hearing yourself say, for example:

  • “When I’m done with this project then maybe I’ll look at my calendar.”
  • “I don’t have time, with my family commitments and all..”
  • “I haven’t worked hard enough to really deserve time off.”
  • “There’s no money in the budget for a vacation.”
  • “Time off will only set me back and create more work.”
  • “I would love to but…(fill in the blank)”

Let me say … I am in no way suggesting that you re-mortgage your house or plunk down the credit card to go on an extravagant vacation. Yet here’s the risk of letting these thoughts stop you from saying “YES” to time off altogether …

It’s exactly these kinds of thought patterns of undeservedness or “someday” or “later” thinking, that can lead to a sense of martyrdom, to feeling unappreciated, to setting yourself up for burn out, AND neglecting your need for R & R can even have an adverse effect on your healthkiddie pool and well-being.

We *all* need time off!  And, truth is, taking time off allows us to be much more productive and engaged during our time on!

Time off is about shifting gears to support your holistic well-being. Time off is a KEY piece to creating true Success Synergy: a balance of working AND not working. It is an investment in well-being, and frankly … the alternative is unsustainable.

If you DON’T give yourself time to re-charge, your body will eventually demand it but – why wait ’til your bod is SCREAMING for you honor this basic need?!?  Your know better. It’s really about being someone who honors this need and allows *space* in your mind, in your heart, and in your LIFE for what nourishes you – doing what you need to do to prioritize and support of your own self-care. And really: if you don’t do it, who will?

Even if you don’t know yet exactly how or where you’re going to spend your time off, it’s important to make a commitment to carving out that time NOW. That means time unplugged – not working. (Yes, even if you *love* your job. And yes, even if the budget is tight.)

Again – there are no rules about distance, duration, or cost. A frankly, an extravagant vacation doesn’t not necessary mean a more rejuvenating vacation. So, make it your own. It could be a stay-cation!  Time off can be as simple as YOU, a magazine, and a lawn chair.  It’s about carving out “you time” – time dedicated to NOT working and NOT thinking about work. Claim it and make it yours!  Enjoy!

May your dreams always inspire more than they intimidate,