The Radiant Leader: Authentic Leadership for Influence, Visibility and Fulfillment

As a former woman in technology, Emerging Women CEO Chantal Pierrat understands what it means to be “the only woman in the room.” When she was head of marketing and sales for an OEM product, she often found herself pitching mostly to men in white lab coats.

I know what it’s like to be underrepresented – both in terms of the business side but also on the tech and innovation side. And what that costs us in terms of the depth and the breadth of the solutions that are coming to the table.

Being that fly on the tech wall helped inform me of the challenges women face in the industry. Which is why when I was asked to speak at the Grace Hopper Celebration this year, I already had my topic: authentic leadership.

Why Is Authentic Leadership Important?

Both men and women must be themselves at work to be the best at what they do. But women are often viewed as a problem to be “fixed” for a “better fit” instead of a resource for a new paradigm for leadership.

When we are allowed to be our authentic selves, we radiate confidence and purpose. We come alive through our bodies. And this energetic power is the strongest differentiating quality in any leader.
But when we are pressured to fit in? We suffer from burnout, from fatigue. We don’t see the value in advancing our careers. And we rarely make it to the tech executive level.

The Problem in the Tech Industry: When Women Don’t Feel Valued

Mid-career is an especially challenging time for women. Most of us become discouraged from advancing onward when we:

  • Don’t see any evidence that our skills and contributions are recognized.
  • Cannot see a clear future path when so few women have forged those paths before us.
  • Are encouraged to spend our time fitting-in instead of innovating and streamlining products and services.
  • Suffer from low input, high burnout and lack of self-confidence.
  • Become isolated from those who would advocate for our success and advancement.
  • Have growing family commitments and are expected to “do it all” in order to “have it all.”

Mid-level burnout isn’t only a “tech problem” either. It spans across nearly all industries — from business to finance to farming.

The Solution: Connection-Based Radiant Leadership

Conscious, feminine leadership is changing the world for the better. But we still have a lot of work to do.
If we want to become our authentic selves in the office, we need to first believe we are worthy. Radiant leadership is all about the expression of love, confidence and happiness. But more importantly, the love, confidence and happiness we draw from within.

When we are whole, we are using our hearts, minds, bodies and souls in unison.
The result? Resilient women and men, working together to influence the world through a strong sense of purpose and making an impact on their industry.

When you are connected, you are:

  • Coming alive through your body.
  • Using intentional self-talk to override critical or negative thought patterns.
  • Visualizing your goals and creating your inner reality in the outer world.
  • Listening to your heart, checking in with your body and tuning into your intuition.
  • Following your highest truth (your purpose in life).
  • Connecting with yourself first and using storytelling to connect with others; it’s the specificity that makes all stories universal.
  • Changing hearts and minds with your charisma.

Case Study: HP

How do we know it works? This isn’t our first rodeo. When it comes to radiant leadership, we’re all for conversation — but we’re all in for more action.

In a collaborative partnership with HP delivering programming to 1,000 women (and men), we were able to measure the following in our participants :

  • Increased confidence
  • Higher instances of speaking up
  • More clarity of purpose
  • Reduced attrition
  • Recruitment savings
  • Increased engagement
  • Higher rates of advancement

When we support women, everyone enters a greater position of power. Everyone becomes free to innovate and create. We can all benefit from radiant leadership — on personal to societal levels.

How could radiant leadership change your industry? What could you build or streamline if you were fully supported? For more information, contact Emerging Women at [email protected].

Facebook Live Recap: Power Circles Change Lives

In case you missed it …things got real this morning on Facebook Live.

I am fired up by the power of connection and ready to leverage our Emerging Women collective to bring about big change in the world.

As I watch the current tension between the old school, isolationist patriarchy and the increasingly powerful paradigm of inclusion and compassion I know beyond any doubt which model will win in the end.

Mother Earth understands interdependence. It is not a weakness, it is a strength. It is what keeps our world alive. And it is what inspires me to connect women all over the world so that we may work together for a future where all of life can thrive.

This morning, I shared my intimate and personal story of the creation of Emerging Women:

Of feeling the cosmic feminine emerging … and the knowing that followed that I was meant to be a strong voice for this potent energy.

During that time, there was a group of women who had my back … at every stage.

Watch my Facebook Live Video:

 

My Power Circle wasn’t just a women’s circle with wine and lipstick (though that’s great, too!) Or a mastermind to get ahead (also fab)… but a real deal power posse of badass women. Who saw me. Kept me on track. Reminded me of what I had said that I really wanted … as I created something bigger than myself. 

Women are poised for a new leadership paradigm … but to go fast and to go farther, we must NOT do it alone.

To what end are we developing ourselves? Ladies, all this self-awareness is to prepare us to access the next stage of human development … which is to learn and grow through relationship. The WE-volution is coming! And people and companies who are savvy in the art of relationship will come out ON TOP. This is where Power Circles come in.

Your time is now … our incredible Power Circles are open again for a short time (just one more week!) Make the decision and say, “Yes!” to a future that burns brighter than what you can achieve by going it alone.

Power Circles are a unique opportunity to connect deeply with other women who are ready to make a leap in their lives or lean in to leadership more fully.

Together with a trained Emerging Women facilitator, you’ll meet regularly with a small group of women to be deeply supported as you explore new ideas, process challenges, and get real together about what it takes to be a woman leading in today’s world.

Apply today to get matched into the carefully curated Power Circle perfect for you. Registration closes on Sept. 19th, so don’t miss out!


Need to hear more about Power Circles before you apply?

Check out our video featuring women who know first hand how a Power Circle can catalyze transformation, open doors, and expand possibilities inside and out.

 

Again, be sure to apply by Sept 19th to be matched into your new network of unparalleled support, vision, and heart.

I am so excited to go on this journey with you!

Chantal Pierrat

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat | Founder, Emerging Women

 

 

Emerging Women Power Circles

How My Power Circle Changed My Life

Ladies … Let’s gather for a personal and intimate discussion on Facebook Live on Wednesday, September 12 2018 at 10:00 a.m. MT.

I want to share with you why I created Emerging Women in the first place … and the reasons that our individual and collective emergence is key to building a new future.

I will be diving deep on a personal story about how a group of honest, powerful, collaborative, authentic and amazing women absolutely transformed my life. These are stories we NEED right now as a new feminine leadership paradigm emerges.

Please join me: 10:00 a.m. MT on Facebook, right before our Emerging Women Member’s Only Circle Up at 11:00 a.m. MT on Wednesday, Sept. 12.

See you there!

Emerging Women Power Circles

Ask to Learn New Things: Six Steps to Expand Your Feminine Power

We women are often blocked when it comes to asking for what we want.

This holds true even when it comes to asking for additional training at work. Maybe you were taught to be polite and to go for what you want – but only if you weren’t too demanding? As women … how do we best reconcile that?

In researching my book Pause  (and stretching personally to make bold asks) I created a six-step plan for women: How to negotiate to learn new things at work.

Honoring your deepest desires to learn and grow while voicing them is also an act of self-care – and one that can pay off in spades.

No matter what skill I am working on, I am becoming a more empowered feminine leader when I ask for support … and influence others based on what I’ve learned.

For the past several years, I’ve made bold asks from my employer to support and cover trainings including coaching certification, graduate and non-accredited courses, week-long emotional intelligence leadership retreats, and somatic leadership training.

Blaze on and trust your feminine intuition to make your bold ask. If you do get a no, all it means is “no for now.”

Improving our skills and being exposed to new ideas not only makes us better at our jobs but makes us happier and more engaged at work.

This is also true if you are struggling on the work-life balance beam.

It can be tough to find the time and resources for anything that’s selfishly for you, let alone for your own personal development. I encourage you to stay the course, tap into your hungers – and then go for it!

The pre-requisite: Give yourself permission.

Women often believe that asking for what we want is a selfish act, or perhaps our time should be spent elsewhere. Not true! We women are limitless!

The moment you decide to go for something, pause and trust … you can create space for it to happen … with a little intention, planning and support.

 

  1. Identify how you want to learn and grow.
    Get clear on exactly what you want to learn and how you want to do it. Do you want to build your emotional intelligence skills to be a more attuned business leader? Are you interested in a yoga or meditation retreat? Set aside a specific period of time, such as an hour, one evening or even a weekend to explore ideas. Research what appeals to you. Be vigilant and create boundaries for yourself to get it done. Journal or write it down.Research shows that writing has a neurological effect on the brain, effectively saying: “Wake up and pay attention!” When you write you honor the feminine value of creating.
  2. Own it.
    Women are especially prone to think that if we need to study up on something, we lack a competency or have a particular weakness. Not true! View this as a skill to develop. Step into owning it as part of your commitment to your emerging feminine leader. The first step is the ability to own your desire to grow in this area … and that will ripple into the work arena. If you don’t support yourself, no one else will.
  3. Create your vision statement.
    This is a powerful feminine leadership move. Create your vision statement and orient from there. Visions guide us to think big and are generative from a vast open world of possibilities. They infer possibility and are a beacon … a hint of the person we can become. Ask yourself, “Who will I become as a result of this investment in my time and resources?” Will you be more engaged, influential or mindful? Be specific and descriptive. Keep it in the first person. One sentence is ideal. Write it down, read it daily, and continue to refine it as you evolve.
  4. Connect your goals or outcomes to your employer needs.
    These are more specific to task outcomes and can flow easily once you’ve created your vision. To get buy-in from your manager, team, or company, connect what you will gain to their business objectives.

    Are there issues at work that you could better resolve as a result of this training? In what ways will your company benefit from your improved performance, skills or knowledge?

    What specific skills or knowledge can you share with your manager, team, and/or company from your training or experience? Can you provide a recap (verbally or visually) based on what you learned or how you plan to apply this at work or in your career?

  5. Prep and practice.
    Get ready for the conversation and to make your ask. What are the worst and best-case scenarios? Anticipate questions or concerns. Extra credit if you make your own note cards or flash cards. To my knowledge, nobody I know was let go for asking to learn more. Trust that you are prepared while you acknowledge any fear. Anticipate negotiating, or the opportunity to explore alternatives. Figure out how you will celebrate when you receive that long awaited: “Yes”.

    List out what is negotiable – things like timing, budget and activity. Is partial or full reimbursement possible? Can you avoid using vacation days? One colleague of mine negotiated a week-long leadership retreat where her manager agreed to only log 50 percent for vacation time – that’s 2.5 days she got back in vacation!

    When preparing for your conversation, think specifically about what each person involved in making the decision has to gain. Do your homework and read up on HR policies. Know how educational reimbursement works in your company.

  6. Make your ask. When you’re ready to sit down with your manager, don’t catch them off guard. Give them ample notice and consider adding it to the agenda for your next one-on-one meeting. It doesn’t have to be a formal meeting. If you’re catching up on how your weekend was, make a plug for what class caught your eye and why it matters to you. Better yet, offer how you think it helps you be a better leader in the workplace. Offer to provide a recap or follow up training based on what you learned open to the whole team or organization. If more time is needed, offer to schedule more time to discuss further.

    Recap your vision and goals. Be clear about what exactly you’re asking for – is it for time off, compensation (expenses), or some combination of the two? What will they get in return? Refer to your notes if needed. When the conversation is over, consider following up in writing, emphasizing how this would benefit you and your manager, team or business.

    Be grateful! As a feminine leader, you can be grateful for so much and send gratitude to others. Whether it’s in silence in a full conference room or with your manager, or as you pass someone in the hall, an attitude of gratitude never hurts when it comes to making bold asks. An example is, “Thank you [MANAGER NAME] for supporting me and helping me reach my potential.”

There are three likely outcomes: getting what you’ve asked for, getting some of what you asked for, or getting a flat out “no.”

By following these steps, you will increase your chances of getting a favorable outcome. Even if you get a no, think about how you could reshape your ask for the future.

Remember, just by making your bold ask you are contributing to, and maybe even igniting, a corporate culture that supports individuals to learn and grow in ways beyond the status quo. And that is leadership.

Power Practice: Ignite Your Divine Spark

Do you want to ignite an intimate relationship with your divine essence and feminine intuition? 

Author Sera Beak says a simple meditative practice can be a powerful tool to ignite a deep connection to our “divine spark” or inner wisdom that will help guide every aspect of our lives including career, relationships, health and spirituality.

Sera says the “divine spark” goes by many names. It is your soul, your essence, your inner goddess/god – the center of your center. The you of you. Your distinct and sovereign divinity that is connected to all that is. The divine spark is your guidance and grace, your deepest knowing, and your toughest truth.

Sera says the divine spark’s love for you is unmatched by anyone or anything in the universe. When you ignite it, you don’t just believe, you know on every level of your being, and in every cell of your body, that you are the one you’ve been looking for. “When you ignite your divine spark … you finally come home.”

On today’s Power Practice recording, Sera leads us through a transformative meditation to ignite our divine intuition, warming us to the essence of ourselves, our intuition, our bodies, Mother Earth, and all that is.

 

Play Power Practice – Ignite Your Divine Spark:

 

Sera Beak finished graduate school at Harvard studying comparative world religion and rapidly gained traction as what The New York Times called “a new role-model” for her generation.

She was much in demand as a speaker, author, and teacher for young modern women who she felt had been left out of the world’s wisdom traditions. She left lucrative offers behind to pursue the work of her Soul.

She is the author of three books, the latest: Redvelations: A Soul’s Journey to Becoming Human.Sera has been a featured presenter at Emerging Women Live

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with Sera Beak in our Emerging Women Podcast “Redvelations.”

Sera Beak Podcast Redvelations

Empathy: The Greatest Superpower of the Feminine

Sometimes I feel torn between wanting to disconnect from the media and turn away from the pain I feel from current events, while at the same time leaning into my increasing heart rate and palpable anger over the negative forces alive in our world. This past week was no different. And “leaning in” has won out — yet again.

As I, like many of you, learned that our government was taking children away from their parents at the border, I wanted to collapse and shut it all out. Instead, I was swept up by the collective outrage of so many people. Now I feel more alive than ever, with a renewed clarity of purpose and a hopefulness stemming from the undeniable power of our connected voices.

It’s easy to become despondent when we are alone and feeling alienated from the rest of the world. In fact, the patriarchy has traditionally drawn much of its power from separating people and creating strong divisive lines in areas of gender, race, economics and political ideas. This kind of bullying, top-down negative reinforcement, and abuse of power has been the norm in cultures where the masculine is out of balance with the feminine.

Now all of life is suffering. What we see happening with refugees seeking asylum at the border is a metaphor for our current global crisis: Humanity has become separate from our primary caregiver — our true Mother, the Earth herself. The aching in our hearts as we hear the cries of children reaching for their parents echo the pain of separation we feel for the loss of the Feminine on our planet. And we need Her; we cannot survive without Her.

Empathy is the greatest superpower of the Feminine. May we not be drained by the strength of our emotions, the depth of our compassion, and the lengths that we must travel to fight for Her rightful place in our world. Eve Ensler could not have said it better:

“I think what I’ve learned is that every time I say something I’m not supposed to say and every time I’m willing to look at something or feel something, there’s incredible freedom that comes — even if there’s sorrow attached to it. Even if there’s despair attached to it, even if there’s a responsibility attached to it, there’s enormous freedom. It’s a big question. How do we say Wake UP and make awakening a beautiful thing?” 

Lean in and feel; then speak up, vote, and gather with others. Connect with and love as many people as you can. Now is not a time to be stingy! It is the intimacy of our relationships that will remind us what we are fighting for.

It’s not going to be comfortable, it’s not going to be easy, and we are just at the beginning – but we have each other.

And we are, each of us, FIRED UP. Collectively? Unstoppable.

Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat | Founder, Emerging Women

Power Practice: Breaking Through Your Inner Glass Ceiling

Do you want to become a powerful creator of your life and break through your inner glass ceiling?

Claire Zammit says the key to transforming our lives is fully understanding the emotional center of old thoughts, beliefs and emotions.

Claire says we can reconnect to the deeper truth of who we are by understanding and letting go of beliefs that don’t serve us.

On today’s Power Practice recording, Claire describes how to create the life of your dreams by breaking through your own inner glass ceiling – those thoughts, beliefs and emotions that are holding you back from living your full potential.

She leads us through a practice to connect to the deeper truth of who we are, and to anchor new beliefs and thought patterns that result in living from a more powerful place.

Play Power Practice – Breaking Through Your Inner Glass Ceiling:

 

Claire Zammit, Ph.D. is an expert transformational teacher, mentor, leader, and successful conscious entrepreneur. She is the co-creator of the Feminine Power training courses for women and the co-founder and president of Evolving Wisdom, an Inc.100 company. Her platform for the global expansion of the Feminine Power programs has now reached over 300,000 women throughout the world.

She was a featured presenter at the innaugural 2013 Emerging Women Live Conference.

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with Claire Zammit in our Emerging Women Podcast “The Keys to Feminine Power.”

Power Practice: The Backpack Meditation

Emerging Women Power Practices help you embody the freshest ideas in personal and professional development. Get the guided audio practices right here – straight from our favorite thought leaders to you!

Feeling blocked? Gabrielle Bernstein is here with a meditation that can help.

When we find ourselves pushing too hard, moving too fast, manipulating situations or trying to control the outcomes of our lives, we need to center back into our breath.

Our breath has the power to bust through our energy blocks and realign all that needs to be moving through us.

This meditation from Gabrielle will leave you calm, centered, aware, and ready to let your body guide you. It’s called the Backpack Meditation because you can pull it out anytime, anywhere.

Tune in to your inner guidance system so you can be the presence you are meant to be in this world.

Play Power Practice #23 – The Backpack Meditation:

 

If you like this Power Practice, you’ll love Gabby’s Emerging Women Podcast: The Universe Has Your Back. Listen here.

The Universe Has Your Back

Gabrielle Bernstein is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Universe Has Your Back, and has written five additional bestsellers. She was featured on Oprah’s SuperSoul Sunday as a “next-generation thought leader,” and The New York Times named her “a new role model.” She appears regularly as an expert on The Dr. Oz Show and co-hosted the Guinness World Record largest guided meditation with Deepak Chopra.

Gabrielle is a certified Kundalini yoga and meditation teacher. She is also trained in the Emotional Freedom Technique and she’s a student of Transcendental Meditation, as taught by the David Lynch Foundation.

In January 2018 Gabrielle launched her sixth book, Judgment Detox.

Power Practice: Mentor Visualization

Emerging Women Power Practices help you embody the freshest ideas in personal and professional development. Get the guided audio practices right here – straight from our favorite thought leaders to you!

Have you ever felt confused, triggered, or upset in an important situation, leaving you unsure of your next move?

HeatherAsh Amara has a guided visualization that can help bring perspective, creativity, and space to these moments, leading to more positive outcomes.

HeatherAsh led the Warrior Goddess Firewalk at Emerging Women Live 2018, and hosted the recent Emerging Women Power Boost Igniting Our Belly, Heart, and Intuitive Fire. Today she’s here to share a quick and potent Power Practice that can give you the confidence to speak your truth.

Take 10 minutes to close your eyes, pay attention to your body, and call in a guide who can help you hear the wisdom you’re seeking, even in tough circumstances.

Play Power Practice #22 – Mentor Visualization:


If you like this Power Practice, you’ll love HeatherAsh Amara’s Emerging Women Power Boost: Igniting Our Belly, Heart, and Intuitive Fire.

Members can watch the replay HERE. Not yet a member? Start your FREE TRIAL to check out all the amazing offerings!

HeatherAsh Amara is the author of Warrior Goddess Training Warrior Goddess Way, The Toltec Path of Transformation, and the newly released Awaken Your Inner Fire.

She is dedicated to inspiring depth, creativity, and joy by sharing the most potent tools from a variety of world traditions.

HeatherAsh studied and taught extensively with don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements, and continues to teach with the Ruiz family.

Raised in Southeast Asia, HeatherAsh has traveled the world from childhood and is continually inspired by the diversity and beauty of human expression and experience.

She has been dancing over hot coals for the past 25 years and is a certified firewalk instructor trainer with Sundoor International. http://www.heatherashamara.com

How to Talk About the Hard Things

There is one question that guides all of the work that Wokie Nwabueze does.

What does each woman need to do or reclaim in order to be able to speak with power and authority?

We all know the tide is turning in favor of women speaking up in difficult conversations. But just knowing there’s a movement isn’t enough to prepare us to actually have those difficult conversations.

Lucky for us, Wokie is here to help.

 

Mindset

In Wokie’s most recent Emerging Women Power Boost, she notes that it’s easy to lose integrity with yourself before you even walk into a difficult conversation.

To effectively advocate for yourself, you have to decide that you are in your authority, and that you’re comfortable with that. You have to inject yourself in a way that is powerful.

Wokie Nwabueze Power Boost

In Wokie’s words, you have to roll out your ideas like Rihanna on the red carpet. You must demand to be seen and heard so that you can overcome that barrier of invisibility women leaders are so often up against.

 

Phases of Constructive Dialogue

Once you’re feeling full-on Rihanna about yourself, you can further prepare by running through Wokie’s 5 Phases of Constructive Dialogue. To hear Wokie go into more detail about each point, watch the replay of her Power Boost HERE.

1. Planning
Get clear on your needs. Be deeply honest with yourself. When you can articulate exactly what you need and why, you’re much more likely to bring keep a conversation on track and bring the conflict to a satisfactory resolution.

2. Outline of Issue
Explore how you can present the issue in a nonjudgemental, objective way. Try attaching the needs you’ve identified directly to the issue at hand.

Say your partner leaves wet towels on the floor and it drives you nuts. Telling them, “I need to know you respect our shared space,” can lead to an infinitely more productive outcome than “You’re such a slob! You drive me nuts!”

3. Dialogue/Discovery
Now it’s time for connected conversation. Talk, listen, and ask questions. Find a way to recognize each other’s humanity through it all. As Wokie says, “Empathy is the holy grail of all communication.”

In the towel example, you might ask, “What does respect of space mean to you?” Be ready to listen openly to an honest response.

4. Value Exchange
Don’t forget, there’s a person who has their own needs and fears on the other side of this conversation. What might you offer to exchange with them so that both parties can come out with a win?

It’s also important to check in with yourself to see whether you are rushing to make everyone comfortable instead of focusing on your needs. Planning with Wokie’s 5 Phases will make you much less likely to do this.

5. Agreement/Next Steps
If the mere mention of conflict gives you the shivers, remember that conflict is simply the meeting of two different views or needs. All conflict offers the possibility of change and positive resolution!

 

What If You’re Getting Derailed?

Even with a lot of good planning in place, conversations can get derailed.

Wokie outlines the most common things that send us off track, and shares her methods for getting back on course later in her Power Boost. If you want to hear more about that, you can watch the replay HERE.

These tips are especially helpful if you’re feeling overwhelmed, if the conversation is going on too long, or if you’re accused of being too emotional.

The Power Boost ends, as always, with an eye-opening Q&A from the viewers. We hope you’ll watch the whole video to prepare for your next difficult conversation. Members, you can find it here. Not-yet-members, you can see it (and a lot more) by starting your free trial today!


Member Spotlight: Tonya Gonzalez

Each month we interview an Emerging Women member to grow our connections and possibilities for collaboration with the conscious leaders living the truth of who they are. It’s the Emerging Women way!

This month we speak with Tonya Gonzalez, Tarot Life Coach. She’s a spiritual psychic medium and entrepreneur. She’s also been a TV star, librarian, yoga instructor, and radio personality. A self-described “global citizen,” she brings her rich life experience to bear in service to the Universe through spiritual connectedness.

You may have benefitted from Tonya’s wisdom and insight at an Emerging Women Circle Up. Now let’s take a little time to hear more about Tonya’s mission, process, challenges, and favorite practices. (And be sure to drop a line in the comments if you want to ignite a connection – who knows where it might lead…)

1. Tell us more about your work and how it supports women.

My work as an Intuitive provides Healing the Sacred Feminine. By journeying into the mind, body and Spirit of a woman, together we discover ways to become more of who she is or visions to be.

This deep Soulful Healing work supports women with powerful, practical Principles & Practices that increase intuition, develop confidence and builds SoulSelf Awareness, in other words teaching women to “Use Your Magic” and to be their own Oracles.

2. How would you define intuition? How can we truly KNOW our divine direction?
The definition of Intuition for me is the inner sense we are being guided. It is utilizing the senses, not just thoughts, as decision and directive markers

Understanding this begins with Trust. Knowing it did not come from you, but through you is the lesson. The Ego wants to take credit and also discourages you from believing in yourself.

Learning to distinguish chatter from channeled messages comes from relearning to trust and confide in oneself, which is the definition of Confidence.

You know it’s divine direction when you recognize it is.

3. In what way are you Emerging? What support do you need?

The ways I am Emerging are as a powerful Voice and Healer. Using my voice to speak on issues facing women of color, holding “Sacred Conversations” to discuss what support is needed, creating a community of women who are ready to heal themselves, tackle the complexities of racism amongst women, as well as other spiritual support needed for today’s woman.

The support I need most is sharing with more women, moving beyond social media to other mediums through collaborations, connections, and communities like this.

What challenges are you facing right now? Give us the REAL real.

The challenge I am facing right now is having time to do it all.

In one afternoon I can have a coaching client, get a prayer request for a loved one’s death, support a pregnant mom, heal a broken heart, and support someone’s health issues thousands of miles away.

As a multi-passionate spiritual entrepreneur, I am a one woman enterprise. I would love web design support and a virtual assistant to help get me organized so I can serve, thus have more to create.

5. What practices root you down and give you power?

The practice that roots me down is Prayer. As a licensed Spiritual Counselor (Practitioner) of Science of Mind, student and teacher of A Course in Miracles for over 6 years, and a yoga teacher, it is my go-to Practice, Mind Calmer, Heart Healer, and quick fix.

What gives me power are my Tarot Decks. Tarot is the only daily self directed spiritual practice, other than A Course in Miracles, that I use. They provide not only guidance, but insights about what the day may bring.

It is my unique perspective of Tarot blended with intuition that allow me to Serve, Share, and Shine.


And don’t forget to start your FREE TRIAL now to get inspired and grow with Chantal, Tonya, and all of the brilliant Emerging Women members.

Speaking from the Home Zone

Public speaking is edgy and daunting. Allowing yourself to be vulnerable on a stage, wanting to connect on a level as deep as your palms are sweaty. We’ve all been there.

But Gail Larsen, founder of the Real Speaking® Academy, has made it her mission to be there with us. She delights in helping people find their own story, to speak from the truth of who they are and what they love to open hearts, inspire change, and move people to act.

Gail Larsen’s work has been described by Fast Company as “transforming your relationship to your voice via the deepest stirrings of your soul.”

If you’ve ever tried to perfectly perform a memorized speech, if you’ve ever packed a presentation with endless facts and stats, if you’ve ever thought it takes credentials to be credible, you MUST watch Gail’s keynote from Emerging Women Live 2017.

Gail’s talk planted a seed of courage in every woman there – that with a little practice and investigation, we can speak from the heart, from the “HomeZone,” and the people we need will “line up like a barcode” to join our causes.

WATCH Transformational Speaking: Speak a New Language so the World May Be a New World

As Chantal says, “Gail Larsen’s work in transformational speaking is THE place to go to craft your personal story in a way that creates impact and influence.”

Her original approach to communication draws from her own journey as a previously reluctant speaker, her respect for indigenous wisdom, 30+years in the world of speaking, and wide experience in business and association management.

That’s why Emerging Women is thrilled to offer a special Transformational Speaking™ Online Course from Gail – one that Chantal will take right alongside you!

To learn more about this one-of-a-kind opportunity, and to read testimonials from Danielle LaPorte, Marie Forleo, Kris Carr, and more, CLICK HERE.

 

 

 

Member Spotlight: Sage Hobbs

Each month we interview an Emerging Women member to deepen our connections and possibilities for collaboration with the conscious leaders living the truth of who they are. It’s the Emerging Women way!

This month we interview Sage Hobbs, a women’s empowerment and leadership coach, speaker, author of Naked Communication: Courageously Create the Relationships You Really Want, and host of The Naked Conversations Podcast.

Sage rocked the Sister Stage at Emerging Women Live so hard that we invited her to lead February’s Power Boost on Naked Communication. Here’s your chance to get a peek at what makes her tick… Enjoy!

Who are the most influential women in your life? Why?

There are so many women who have touched my life in profound ways, from those I’ve never actually met to the ones I call when I need support and encouragement. I’m way into the value of deep female relationships that are real and honest.

I’d name Audre Lorde for her message that has guided me for years: “When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” It’s a battle cry to be courageous and to pursue our meaningful work, even with the fear that may show up along the way (which it usually does for me!).

And my mom, for her unwavering support of my big, driven spirit, from my childhood through to today. She always has my back, nudges me along when I feel doubtful, and is a total stand for women making a difference in the world on their own terms.

What’s your biggest struggle or challenge? How does it shape you?

My biggest struggle as a woman is the ever-elusive idea of “balance.” I’m constantly juggling my desire to go big with my work and my desire to be present as a mom and partner.

I’m naturally ambitious and service driven. I get super fired-up about amplifying women’s voices, supporting them in creating amazing relationships, and reconnecting with themselves (and how freakin’ powerful they are). I also really recognize that time is fleeting, that our relationships are the foundation of our happiness, and I want to always pay attention to those I love most. I had cancer when I was 23, and it made a lasting imprint about living life to the fullest.

It’s a dance between all my passions, and that’s the biggest challenge I have as a woman today… wanting to “do it all” and do it really well. There are other systemic challenges, of course, like speaking up and being heard in a “man’s world.” But the one I feel most acutely on the day-to-day is wanting to fill all the roles I play effectively.
Tell us more about your work and how it supports women.

Beyond my individual client work, I host a podcast (Naked Conversations) where I interview women who are courageously following unconventional paths to lead lives of their own design and make a difference in their communities. I love having the opportunity to share women’s stories and amplify their voices.

I recently had the chance to speak on the Emerging Women Live Sister Stage, where I talked about how to finally get comfortable being “naked,” to stop pretending that we have it all figured out, to really be ourselves and connect with each other in real and powerful ways. Whenever I can speak to a group of women and see them reconnect with that spark inside themselves, it is the most invigorating and moving experience. In those moments, I know that there is hope for a future where women support each other fully and lead courageously.

 

What are you known for?

I’m known for my bold, insightful, and dynamic approach to communication, relationships, and personal growth. I’m known for my work on “naked” communication and how to have better relationships and reconnect with our personal power. I’m also known for being outspoken, dropping some F bombs, being the best person to share good news with (I’m super enthusiastic), and always the first one on the dance floor. And I looooove the beach and Italian hoagies (in Philly only).

What topics are difficult for you to discuss and why? (Love, power, money, race, etc.)

I’m pretty comfortable with difficult conversations. Even if they make my heart race or palms sweat, I’m willing to have them. In fact, I really believe it’s in those conversations that deeper human connection happens. However, lately politics have been harder for me to discuss, as there are such strong and divisive opinions.

Five years from now what does your ideal career/family/social situation look like?

I’m a philanthropist on a bigger scale, traveling globally with my family while running a purpose-driven business that empowers girls and women to live the most powerful version of their lives.

Start your FREE TRIAL now to live inspired, grow, and connect with Sage and all of the brilliant Emerging Women members.


The Most Radical Resolution for 2018

As the Season of Light is upon us and the new year approaches, I’m keenly aware that many people are entering into the ancient ritual of thinking about, writing, and preparing for their New Year’s Resolutions. Even before we get through the holiday season and open gifts, people are starting to gear up for this annual event.

The stressed and impatient are vowing to find balance next year. Smokers are anxiously getting ready to take their last puffs. And those who want to lose weight are letting themselves splurge through the holidays prepping for the barren land that awaits them January 1

These are all worthy goals. And goal setting is a great practice. But just for a minute, consider whether this is the kind of gift you want to be giving yourself?

What is it costing you to be focusing on what needs to be improved every year? What would be possible if you gave yourself the most radical resolution:

To focus on what is right with you and your life instead of what you need to change? What would this season FEEL like if you practiced validating what you’ve done well? Validation is a gift that grounds you in the strength of who you are and nourishes your wholeness.

What would the world be like if people were focused on their wholeness and not on their not enoughness? This Season of Light, I want to explore and challenge you to gift your self differently.

Instead of focusing on what needs to change…focus on what is good and wonderful about who you are and what your unique gifts are. Grab a piece of paper and answer these three questions:

  • What can you say to yourself in the coming days/weeks/year that would feed your inner light and wholeness?
  • What have you longed to hear each day as you struggle to keep that bright light within burning strong and steady?
  • What might get in the way of you validating yourself in the new year? This is a gift you can give to your self each and every day if you choose.

When we fill our cups with self­‐loving validation and celebration of our unique gifts, qualities, and strengths, we bring health, well­‐being, and passion to our body and peace to our mind. Our bodies are nourished and sustained from within. I invite you to enter into this radical gift giving experiment and try a new kind of resolution! See what happens when you focus on your wholeness and give self‐loving validation to yourself and to others in the coming days/weeks/year. Maybe we can revolutionize gift giving and resolutions to truly create a Season of Light that lasts all year long.

Want some encouraging words to help you believe in your wholeness? Try our Emerging Women podcast with Gabby Bernstein: The Universe Has Your Back.


Adventure: The Gift of Not Knowing

Adventure is when you don’t know what is going to happen next. Life is uncertain, full of surprises, and we never know what’s around the corner.
So, life is one big adventure, right?

Why does it not feel like that all the time?
Why do we sometimes feel that our daily lives are packed with monotonous “to do” lists, obligations, “the same old, same old,” and not enough play? 

And those “adventure-like” surprises aren’t always what we want, are they?

I put pressure on myself quite often and forget to just enjoy the daily ride of life and it’s natural vicissitudes. I have frequently struggled balancing adventure and play with growing up and being responsible (my mother’s voice in my head, telling me to “get a real job”).

I began working in the outdoor leadership and experiential education space twenty-three years ago. While my family didn’t understand the life-changing work I was doing (with individuals and groups from sexual assault and military trauma survivors to senior management and VP’s of Fortune 500 companies), I knew the work was having a positive impact. From stuck to success, angry to inspired, and unhappily married to single and thriving, the life-affirming stories I’ve had the privilege to witness over the past quarter of a century continue to inspire my work today.

The acceptance of life’s uncertainties so positively transformed my life, I wanted to incorporate the therapeutic use of adventure and intentional travel to serve and impact others for good.

My offering (a blend of Adventure Therapy, Personal Discovery Coaching, and Guiding Sacred Vision) is most powerful in the immersion and group setting. As I prepare to lead another wellness adventure retreat this March, I look forward not only to the fun we will have and the laughs we will share, but the sparks that will ignite transformation. The specific goals of the individuals vary, yet the shared vision of our retreats is always some version of experience my authentic self, seek adventure and create a vision for my life in a supportive setting.”

You’ve got to be on board with this vision to play our way! We are equal. We all deserve respect. We all deserve the space to face new beginnings, scary adventures, and evolutionary partnerships. From CEOs, nonprofit leaders, and solo-preneurs; to single ladies, married mamas, single mamas, and everyone in between, our common ground is a love for nature, our selves, each other, and new experiences.

Adventures are opportunities for expansion, growth and self-discovery, specifically if the experience is framed and guided in an empowering way. Being prepared to handle unexpected or unwelcome challenges and struggles is an art form that requires a well and fit mindset.

Cue the adage: attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure. It’s a good thing mindset is something we can cultivate and practice as we navigate life’s uncertainties.

I consider our adventure retreats a really awesome playground for “practicing life,” both a metaphor and blueprint for kicking more ass in our day to day. Not only do we practice yoga and cultivate other skills and strengths, like working out, paddleboarding, swimming with enormous sea creatures (whale sharks and playful seal lion pups!), some will learn to kitesurf or meditate for the first time on our retreats.

The magic of these practices is the meaning we make during and after. Our work is the embodiment of the learning and how we apply new insights to our lives.
Do we stand rigid and hunched over on the paddleboard or will we bend our knees, engage our core and flow with the rhythm of the water below us, and therefore life all around us? Do we freak out when we jump in the cold water and start to hyperventilate and scream, “I can’t breathe, get me out?” Or are we willing to be guided to a different experience? Yes, this happened. One woman had never snorkeled before, and she was skeptical that the little plastic tube bulging at her lips would allow her to suck in air from above. Plus the open bay water was colder than she expected. Already struggling with anxiety and self-doubt, she immediately went to, “this is wrong. I feel bad. This is dangerous. I can’t breathe. Get me OUT!” She wouldn’t even put her face in the water to see the incredible marvel of a twenty-five-foot Whale Shark peacefully drifting below her.

I had seconds to support her embodying a different experience as she splashed and lurched towards the boat’s ladder. I reminded her that indeed, she was still breathing, that her body would forget the cold water once she opened her eyes to the magic below, and that yes, she was floating, held in the community of support, and I’d be right next to her. I wasn’t going to force her, but I was hoping to make a quick and compelling argument for her to stay long enough to be transformed from her limited mindset and transfixed by nature’s gifts.

The physical experience of anxiety and stress can feel identical to excitement and bliss: racing heart, rapid breath, lack of focus. I reminded her that there might be a possibility to be excited by all the newness instead of the fear/flight default mindset triggered by these physical sensations.

With the support of two of us beside her, she stayed in the water longer than anyone else. She got back on the boat with a smile from ear-to-ear and nonstop giggling, bubbly joy, and open-hearted conversation the rest of the day.

This is more than a motivational moment. It’s an embodied experience. She perceived fear, but choose to move through it, with the intention of growth and expansion.
The next step was connecting the dots of her powerful choice in this moment… to committing to a broader, more expanded version of herself and what is possible for her life. From swimming in open water, to yoga on a paddleboard, to intimate sharing in front of a group, this woman experienced many firsts on that journey. Most importantly, she experienced the willingness to be led by others to a greatness she didn’t know she possessed.

This power of adventure and sisterhood, of experiencing ourselves in new ways, through challenging activities and different landscapes, allows us to clear the pathway for humble self-discovery and new possibilities.

We will never go back to small, safe, and business-as-usual.

I hope you’ll join us if you want an immediate and powerfully positive (and lasting) impact on your life.

Yes, you are going to have a meaningful, empowering and super fun experience.

Yes, you will also be challenged emotionally and physically.

AND…absolutely, you will go home with clarity, vision and a plan to implement change and consistent, restorative retreat and wild adventure in your daily life.

Join Wellfit Women’s upcoming retreat:
La Ventana, Baja California Sur, Mexico
March 1-6, 2018
EMERGING WOMEN receive $200 OFF
OR Customize* your group adventure to one of our locations in Costa Rica, Baja, Mexico, Peru, Croatia and Greece
*Custom groups can include families and all genders

Your Moyo Knows: The Body Doesn’t Lie

Why don’t we follow that still small voice inside ourselves?

Why do we ignore our hunches and urges?

Why do we not live the life we truly are?

Why? Because we were programmed NOT to.

I didn’t know this… until I learned that the body doesn’t lie.

The universe had to help wake me up from what now seems like a coma, to realize I had created a life that was not me. It looked like the wonderful life I had been programmed to choose, but it was not who I was or what I truly wanted.

After being hit by four different drunk drivers in a 20 month period, losing much of my recruiting business on 9/11, and a near death experience, I had to face the truth… I was not authentically being me and living an authentic life.

I then had to do the most courageous thing I’ve ever done: tell myself the truth and begin to listen to my own heart rather than the programmed messages and beliefs running inside my head. I needed to begin the work of finding my way back home to who I am. I had to learn to love myself fully and release the negative beliefs that I carried.

There’s a famous Rwandan Proverb that says, “You can outrun that which runs after you. But you can not outrun that which runs inside you.”

Neuroscience has discovered that we reprogram our brains. But we must first identify, name, and question the outdated beliefs that are running within us, and then exercise our will to DROP IT and replace the old patterns and beliefs with new alternative positive ways of being.

So, what runs inside you?

For me, it was a fear of being selfish if I did what was best for me, plus some old buried hurts that were unconsciously eating up my focused energy and vitality.

Here are some simple steps you can use to question your beliefs and replace your old thought patterns with ones that better align with your purpose:

  1. Name what is running inside you that doesn’t serve you. Allow your body to tell you the whole truth. What outdated thoughts do you have about your self or others, old hurts, excuses, fears?
  2. Feel compassion and empathy for where you are and where you’ve been.
  3. Identify how much time is spent running these old negative programs.
  4. Write the vision of what life would feel like if you could drop these programs and replace them. What might be possible when you are free and open to following your heart?

How to hear what your heart wants:

  1. Breathe into your heart space and feel your curiosity and openness to learn what your heart wants right now.
  2. Remember that the body doesn’t lie. You may be surprised by what it says.
  3. Receive whatever your heart says in this moment.
  4. You may dismiss what you hear as “crazy” or “impossible” if it’s something you’ve not imagined you would ever want or could achieve. Or you may not be up for taking action at this moment. It’s ok to acknowledge whatever is real for you as you listen to your heart.

The first time I tried this exercise, “song writing” is what my heart said it wanted to do. I will share with you the brief dialogue that came immediately after I heard this:

“I don’t have TIME to song write and I’m a single mom and need to make money, so no to songwriting.”
End of discussion.

Fast forward 2 years after my MOYO said “song writing,” and you’d see me teaching a group of executives to “listen to their hearts and reclaim their gifts and passions.” I felt my body cringe with hypocrisy… I had tuned my heart out even though it had spoken so clearly. So I picked up a pen and paper late that night and wrote the words to my first song, “Love Your Self.” It took 10 minutes. After laughing out loud at myself and my programmed resistances and excuses for not trying songwriting, I began following my heart more often. I had to let go of the program I ran inside that said “anything worth having or doing has to be hard.” In less than 4 months, the song became a complete album called Love Your Self. Then it became a one-woman show and benefit concert, and further evolved into a book called The Inner Traveler’s Guidebook to Moyo: Discovering the Power of Listening to Your Own Heart

I believe the most self-loving thing we can ever do is to choose to come home and BE who we are so we can live our authentic, passionate, and purposeful lives.

Mark Twain said, “The two most important days of our life are the day you were born and the day you discover why you were born.” Our soul’s purpose is what we long to fulfill for this lifetime.

Moyo means heart, spirit, and life in Swahili. Discover the power of listening to your own heart. It’s a practice in trusting that your Moyo knows and that the body doesn’t lie.

What would be possible for you if you could trust that your Moyo knows?

Miracles began to happen as I took the steps to reclaim my gifts and give myself what my heart wanted. The same thing can happen to YOU.

My whole life now makes sense. Everything I’ve ever done and all my gifts are now engaged in my life’s passion and work:

To help Inner Travelers™ emerge and become authentically who they are so they can live the life they truly are.

Learning to trust your MOYO is a practice. The more you engage, listen, and act upon the truth your hearts speaks, the more congruent you become.

***If you’d like to work with Linda, she is offering a 3 Session Coaching Package for Emerging Women for just $399 if you sign up by December 31, 2017. This is a 50% discount. Email her at [email protected] or phone her at (805) 729-1663.

Awakened Woman at Emerging Women Live

BREAKING NEWS: Guess who’s coming to close out Emerging Women Live 2017 with an inspirational bang…. Chantal’s (and Oprah’s) favorite speaker of all time – Dr. Tererai Trent!

She’s just published this bookThe Awakened Woman, to help women awaken their sacred dreams through nine essential lessons based on ancient African wisdom, and she wants to share with us in person on Sunday at Emerging Women Live. We cannot wait!

“I come from a long line of women who were forced into a life they never defined for themselves,” recalls Tererai Trent. Growing up in rural Zimbabwe, Tererai loved the physical environment but could not ignore the fact that she was part of a culture where women and girls lived under largely unspoken (and often unspeakable) male dominance. To break this cycle of silence was something that no one could imagine–but Tererai did.

As a girl, Tererai often apprenticed her grandmother, who was the local midwife. In her book, she uses that experience to be “a midwife to women’s awakening,” sharing candid and often harrowing personal stories. As a wife and mother by age 13, with four children by age 18, Tererai was deeply unhappy with her life–until Jo Luck, an American woman visiting Tererai’s village, assured her that anything was possible.

Now one of the world’s most recognizable voices in women’s empowerment and education, Tererai Trent urges us all to “stop the intergenerational trauma of feminine silencing. You do not have to march in the street… but you do have to do the work it takes to awaken: to be courageous enough to name the Great Hunger within you and to claim your right to give voice to your sacred dream.”

Get excited for Dr. Trent and all of the fabulous keynotes and offerings headed your way by signing up for the Emerging Women Live 2017 Free Livestream HERE. We’ll see you on Thursday!


Emerging Women Livestream

Is Your Creatress Running the Show?

There is a ‘She’ inside of you that is unstoppable.

‘She’ is the High Priestess of Manifestation.

‘She’ is the Warrioress.

‘She’ is the Confident Goddess.

‘She’ hunts down fears, insecurities and feelings of inadequacy.

‘She’ is the full embodiment of feminine strength, power and beauty.

All women have a unique ‘She’ screaming to come out.

Craving to be fully self-expressed.

Seeking to live the full potential of her purpose.

‘She’ is also hungry for something that we don’t talk about that much….

‘She’ has a lust to bring to the surface secret desires, sexual fantasies and yearnings for mystical encounters. And the most interesting part is that most of the time, women don’t even know it.

Why?

We are so busy taking care of business, taking care of others, that we numb ourselves from our most intimate desires. We don’t even know they are there. But we feel them!

I see this in every intimate conversation I have with women. Even women who tell me they have it all. There is always something deeper; it’s an intuitive feeling that they might be missing out on something.

That something is having ‘Her’ be in charge of the show. And for that to happen, you have to find ‘Her’ and turn ‘Her’ on.

And when ‘She’ is turned-on, you have access to your most intimate longings and desires.

The desires that you have repressed because you don’t believe you can have them, you think they are wrong and crazy. It’s simply because you haven’t activated all your power to attain them.

‘She’ is Spirit talking to you and working through you.

‘She’ wants to access higher dimensions and to be immersed in spiritual knowledge and service.

‘She’ is the one that wants to say yes to her intuition at every moment, so there is no reason to worry about anything, ever.

‘She’ is the one who is so damn sexy that she calls into her life exactly what she wants.

‘She’ is so powerful that she always knows what to say, do, be or act.

‘She’ is the one that experiences orgasmic pleasure.

‘She’ is the real you.

*Excerpt from Raquel Vasallo’s #1 Best Selling Book – Spiritual Seductress, The High-Powered-Women’s Guide to Devouring the World Through Spiritual Guidance


Raquel Vasallo will be a featured speaker on the Sister Stage at Emerging Women Live 2017. She will also be available for intimate 1-on-1 coaching sessions at the event, and will lead a group coaching circle that you won’t want to miss. Register here to join us for an unforgettable weekend of women’s leadership, Oct. 5-8th at the Westin Hotel in Downtown Denver, CO.

raquel.jpg

Raquel Vasallo is the #1 Best Selling Author of Spiritual Seductress, The High-Powered Women’s Guide to Devour the World through Spiritual Guidance. She is an International Speaker, Elite Spiritual Advisor, Seduction Artist and Provocateur.

Struck by a car in 2008, Raquel’s near-death experience elicited a supreme spiritual awakening. She quit her successful career as a NYC architect and embarked on her work as a Spiritual Seductress.

Raquel plays with high powered luminaries and leaders, seducing their secret desires to live an outrageously turned-on and spiritually tuned-in life. She mentors women, worldwide, on the art of channeling goddess cosmic energy to magnetize opportunities for wealth, divine love, enlightened sex, spiritual guidance and highest purpose.

To receive Divine Whispers to ravish the world, visit www.spiritualseductress.com

Power Practice #21: Living a Virtues-Based Life

Emerging Women Power Practices help you embody the freshest ideas in personal and professional development. Get the guided audio practices right here – straight from our favorite thought leaders to you!

Emily Bennington is the author of Miracles at Work: Turning Inner Guidance into Outer Influence. Her work is about transforming women into mindful, heart-centered leaders who can navigate any life challenge with grace.

For most, this transformation requires a huge shift in perspective. In this Power Practice, Emily unpacks the problematic nature of a goal-driven life. She explains how a values-based life (focusing on who you are instead of what you want) allows for a better path to true success than anything we can plan.

Emily’s freewriting exercise will help you catch yourself when you’re out of alignment with your values, and will give you concrete actions to get you back to making decisions that align with what matters most to you.

We’d love to hear what ends up in your pyramid! Tell us about it in the comments below.

Play Power Practice #21 – Living a Virtues-Based Life:

If you like this Power Practice, you’ll love the workshop offerings at Emerging Women Live. See the full roster under the Workshop tab of our Schedule.

A bestselling author and teacher of contemplative practices for both secular and spiritual audiences, Emily Bennington inspires thousands around the world each day to live and lead with Grace.

Emily has been featured in media outlets ranging from CNN to Marie Claire and she regularly hosts training programs on mindfulness, spiritual intelligence, and nonviolent communication.

Totality and the Feminine Filter

This weekend I drove up with Jay (my husband) and our boys from Boulder to Wyoming to watch the solar eclipse in TOTALITY. 600,000 people were predicted to descend on the tiny town of Casper, WY for this incredible event and I was questioning whether seeing 92% of an eclipse may have been the better way to go – watching the cosmos from our snuggy hometown of Boulder.

But totality was calling. Scientific American says that seeing a partial eclipse is interesting, but witnessing a total eclipse is “mind-blowing.” So with gas tanks strapped to the car (tales of running out of gas were rampant in the pre-eclipse travel warnings!) we soon found ourselves in a big field with campers from all over the world who also heard the call.

And so as the moon was edging its way across the sun I got this big download:

In most Eastern traditions, the sun is considered masculine and the moon is feminine. Our world is an expression of those two polarities – masculine and feminine.

This particular sun is in Leo. Leo is all about self expression, which we love, but it can be narcissistic and very ego-focused if unchecked. Does this sound familiar? We have in our culture right now a very strong feeling of overblown Leo energy.

With this solar eclipse, the feminine moon moved to put a filter on that masculine energy. The moon is about Other, about nurturing, giving, and providing a safe haven. The moon is in service – it’s the mama energy, it’s the energy of Cancer.

But here’s the thing: the moon is ALSO in Leo right now. So the moon is also giving us the self-expression juice. The moon’s feminine energy will help us filter down that “me-focus” while still giving us the Leo’s shot of courage and heart. The feminine will be speaking, loud and proud, but the lens will be through service to others, to the whole.

“May our self-expression, may our full lifetime, our full voice, our full expression as human beings, be in service to others.” That is what I read in this eclipse.

For that brief moment of totality – 2 minutes and 26 seconds – I could imagine 100% balance of masculine and feminine. It is the most wonderful thing to see. TOTALITY.

It doesn’t happen very often. And we pretty much have to chase it. And everything that happens before and after is that dance between masculine and feminine.

But once we’ve experienced totality, a true balanced world, even for the briefest of moment, we have more resilience for the ebbs and flows.

It’s not about being perfect, but rather knowing that a balance exists, visibly at times, on a very high level. Keeping that in our consciousness in a gentle way is comforting. It’s the balance of the universe, it feels like there’s a system much bigger than my thinking that has it all figured out.

With that thought, I say march on brothers and sisters, and let us shine as brightly as we can, but always through the filter of service.

Thoughts? Too woo? In the spirit of collective expression, let me know in the comments. And to dig deeper into this idea of feminine and masculine energies, join us at Emerging Women Live 2017 in Denver, CO. Register here to save your seat, or sign up for the FREE live stream here.


The Power of Empathy and a Sense of Belonging

I’ve been to Emerging Women Live twice now, and I’ll be there again this coming October 2017. The first time, I went on a whim, mostly to see Ani DiFranco perform. It had been many years since I’d had the prophetic experience of being in her presence and despite it being the most money I had ever spent on any concert, I signed up at the last minute. I read Daring Greatly by Brené Brown just before the event started and walked into a weekend that changed me deeply – for good. Being close enough to lock eyes with Ani several times was definitely a highlight of my life, but I got so much more. My whole world was turned inside out as the rest of the weekend I got in touch with self-compassion, inner courage, and a lot of feelings I’d been suppressing for far too long.

Flash forward to January 2017 – the inauguration weekend of a president I cannot accept and the surreal feeling that I’m living in another dimension. I ask my husband for his true feelings about some of my current projects. Like the oracle that he sometimes is, he responded with an idea bigger than both of us. “I think you should make a documentary series,” he said. 

I felt an explosion of inspiration and, due in no small part to the amazing wisdom I’ve soaked in through the Emerging Women community, I recognized the quiet voice of truth and my inner mentor. I got to work. A couple weeks later on a plane to New York, I wrote out treatments for 10 episodes of “Belonging in the USA: Stories from our Neighbors.” Everything was in flow. A week later, I received fiscal sponsorship from Fractured Atlas, the very same day that I was heading to Los Angeles to spend a week shooting the pilot episode. From the very beginning, there has been a feeling of ease and purpose with this project. Emerging Women, and the incredible community of truth tellers and seekers I’ve met there, were catalysts in regaining the confidence in myself to do big things, like create a series.

Are you ready to connect with like-minded women for a deep dive? 

For the past decade I’ve been helping families draw connections from their past to their present while mapping out the vision they want for their collective future through the company I founded in 2005, Legacy Connections Films. In my work as a family filmmaker, what has struck me over and over is how easy it is for us to lose the threads that connect us, perhaps especially when it comes to our own families. With this new project, “Belonging in the USA,” I am challenging all of us to connect the threads that link us together.

The series emphasizes connection, understanding, and empathy in a time when so many forces are constantly screaming that we are disconnected, dissimilar, and saying we should be afraid of anyone who is different. I reject this. I reject the notion that just if someone is different from me I cannot look into their eyes and see their human longing, yearning, hurt, and joy as my own. I reject it because I’ve lived radical empathy for years.

I’ve sat across from conservative male hunters as a liberal vegetarian woman and felt connected to them through our shared humanity. I’ve sat across from women who’ve suffered the loss of children in unspeakable manners and grieved with them, though I’ve never lost a child. I’ve sat across from wives whose sense of self has been shaped primarily by their children and by their husbands’ accomplishments and created the space to help them see their own contributions to the world as well, never once judging them because of all that I have done in my life. I realized years ago that one of my inherent gifts is that when I sit in witness to another being and look into his or her eyes, I see the child this person once was, and all I feel is love. This is the Native Genius that I naturally inhabit. At the first Emerging Women event in 2013, Kristen Wheeler described this and I finally found a name to what it is I was feeling.

Now more than ever is the time for me to use my Native Genius. Now, when even typically open-minded people have suddenly adopted an “us and them” mentality. Now, when many of us are feeling overwhelmed with fear, pain, and what if’s. Now is when we need to come back to what is essentially true. At our core, we all have a child that wants to be seen, heard and acknowledged. Connecting with this part of us is my Native Genius and will be a huge part of what you see revealed in the folks I interview.

This is all because when Trump became president of the United States, it caused me to wake the fuck up! I had been living in deep denial. A bubble of my own making, where everyone I knew and related to in my life shared relatively the same beliefs, ideas and ideals as me. And yet, I have felt the rewards of deeply listening to people that by all appearances I have little to nothing in common with. I wanted to find a way to consciously and deliberately connect with people who may seem different from me to counteract the influence of politics. So I will use my Native Genius to tell the stories of our collective, human family- the inner selves that are longing to be seen and heard – the parts of ourselves that transcend all apparent differences.

So I am creating a new kind of web series that will allow me to explore my own uncomfortable prejudices and judgments, a series that will force me to enter into communities and conversations that are not my own and ask questions, get curious, do a lot of learning, in order to bring about healing in my own soul. One of my favorite parts in Elizabeth Gilbert’s Big Magic is her chapter called “Motives” in which she talks about how she would rather a person write a book in order to entertain themselves as a writer than to help her, as a reader. This stuck with me because growing up Jewish, I have often felt the heavy pressure to try to make the world a better place, tikkun olam. Her chapter on motives helped to put this in perspective. Now I realize that all I really need to do is try to save myself or entertain myself, and the right people who need a similar kind of saving or entertainment will show up to partake in whatever I’m offering up. This is making art as a gift to oneself, not just because we want to do something big and lofty – some grand contribution to humanity (though, c’mon, that’s totally something I want to do, too).

In “Belonging in the USA,” I will interview different people to share their life stories, experiences, struggles, and wisdom all through the context of this political shitstorm we’re currently living in (without making it all about this political shitstorm we’re currently living in). I want it to feel like you’re in each character’s living room, invited to join in on an intimate conversation between them and me, the curious seeker bringing out their story.

With this show I feel that I’m creating an opportunity to explore some of the themes and ideals that are most valuable to discover whether they are valuable to others. What is universal? What is true? Do you derive meaning from the same places/in the same ways that I do? And if not, what life experiences caused you to be/feel/act the way you do?

The goal of the show is radical empathy, the idea of experiencing another person’s life story as if it were your own. My vision for the series is that by getting to know our neighbors near and far we begin to imagine how we can all live through these difficult times together.

The pilot episode of “Belonging in the USA” features Michael D. McCarty, member of the Chicago chapter Black Panther Party, army veteran, acupuncturist, and professional storyteller who currently teaches storytelling workshops to inmates in the California prison system. Michael’s story is one of personal transformation, systemic transformation, and passing along the gift of transformative storytelling. Michael has been a friend of my family for my entire life, and he has been a great teacher of mine since my adolescence. I am honored that he has entrusted me to share his stories with you.

We will host screenings around the country to create opportunities to engage larger communities and particular communities that don’t often intersect to have public conversations about race, values, privilege, unconscious bias, what it means to belong in America, how to be a neighbor, and what empathy looks like in an age of ever-increasing complexity, pseudo-connection and anxiety. I hope you will join me in my efforts to share this work with a larger audience. Please watch our trailer on YouTube. Like it, comment on it, and share it with your networks. This will be the primary way to get the word out about our work. Click here to support this effort with a tax-deductible donation. 

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Whatever you do, don’t miss the power of community you will experience at Emerging Women Live.

I’m excited to meet you there and deepen our sense of belonging – to each other. 


Arielle Nóbile is the founder of Legacy Connections Films and creator of new web series, “Belonging in the USA: Stories from our Neighbors.” She is a speaker, presenter and presence workshop facilitator using her background in theatre, improv, acting. writing, directing and teaching to create deeper connections with our families and our lives.

In Their Prime

*Note: We loved this post from our partners at Experience Life so much we just had to share it here. Be sure to check out the 3 bonus portraits at the bottom to see one of our EWLive faves!

Think beauty fades after 40? These nine honest, beautiful portraits will make you think again.

The incomparable Bette Davis once said, “Old age is no place for sissies.”

She wasn’t kidding. Aging gracefully in a youth-obsessed culture requires mental toughness, especially for women.

We’re told over and over that time steals our beauty. We’re bombarded with “anti-aging” messages entreating us to erase every spot, pore, wrinkle, and gray hair.

We’re basically threatened with a grim life of loneliness if we don’t spend half our income trying to look younger, and we’re led to believe that if we look old, only our grandchildren will love us — and maybe not even they will.

No wonder we’re anxious about aging.

When was the last time you heard the aging process described as honorable or fascinating? Beautiful, even? It’s about time for a broader perspective.

Happily, the women featured in veteran celebrity photographer Peter Freed’s collection of portraits — now compiled in a book titled Prime — provide exactly that.

Freed’s project profiles more than 120 women — all over the age of 35 — who boldly faced his lens without makeup or artifice. Each unretouched image is accompanied by thoughts from the subject about her life.

You’ll meet nine of Freed’s Prime subjects and hear some of their thoughts on living and aging well. They make it clear that older does not mean duller, that beauty and vivacity and love all span time, that it is possible to embrace the signs of age as evidence of a hero’s journey.

As these women tell it, aging is not a subtraction, but an accumulation of experiences that make life richer. If that kind of experience shows on our faces, then so much the better.

Here’s to each of us wearing our own experiences proudly.

Christy Turlington

Christy Turlington

Age: 46

Profession: Model, humanitarian

ON EMBRACING AGE: I always wanted to be more experienced, more worldly. I couldn’t wait to be 30 when I was 20. I thought that would mean I’m a woman and I’ve earned the right to have an opinion and interests that matter and make a difference in the world. I felt like that’s when you begin the real good stuff.

ON BEING HERE NOW: It’s not that I’m realized or have perfect balance, but I do feel like there’s not a lot I’d want to change. I feel excited about what’s ahead, and I’m not in a place to rush through everything like I once was.

ON LOOKING FORWARD: Life is exciting where I am, and I like the unfolding of it. I’m interested in aging in that sense:

  • What will I look like?
  • What will I be?
  • Who will I become?

Alexandra Fuller

Alexandra Fuller

Age: 46

Profession: Author of the memoirs Don’t Let’s Go to the Dogs Tonight, Cocktail Hour Under the Tree of Forgetfulness, and Leaving Before the Rains Come, among others

ON LOOKING OLDER:  I’m not going to outsource my face and my expression so that I look like everyone else or don’t look like I have had the life I’ve lived. I’ve smoked my body weight in cigarettes, I’ve lived through war, I’ve cried and been joyful — I’m supposed to look a little haggard. There’s something so powerful about unapologetically walking around in your own body and face.

ON AGING ENTHUSIASTICALLY: It’s such a brilliant thing, getting older consciously. Even the language shifts. I’m not “shrill” anymore; I’m strident. I think young women need models on how to age unapologetically.

Cindy Joseph

Cindy Joseph

Age: 64

Profession: Model, makeup artist, founder and CEO of BOOM! by Cindy Joseph (a pro-aging cosmetics company)

ON BECOMING A PRO-AGING ADVOCATE: I decided to launch a movement — the “pro-age revolution” — because I wanted to share the good news: Life gets better. It really does. As I get older, I am getting better, happier, sexier. But when we see people who are older, we often see people who are covering their signs of age instead of wearing them proudly. We could be excited about getting there, too, if we saw more of our elders celebrating their age.

ON THE POWER OF WORDS: We need to pay attention to our language and how we commit ageism. Let’s say “vital” instead of “young.” When we say, “Oh my God, she looks so old,” we could be saying, “She looks unhealthy, tired, or depressed.” But we say the word “old.” Yet you can have miserable, closed-minded, sickly people who are young. It’s not the age that creates those characteristics; it’s more lifestyle and attitude.

Ellen Fisher Turk

Ellen Fish Turk

Age: 70

Profession: Special educator, photographer

ON STAYING INVESTED: When I was in my late 60s, I started getting very sad and wondering if I was approaching the last stage of my life. And once I approached 70 I was free, because I had my life and my life was getting bigger and bigger. So I wasn’t resigning or retiring or relieved to leave anything. I was invested in my life.

ON BEAUTY: I have a bumpy nose, and curly, gray hair that doesn’t make any pretense. That sculptured, craggy carved look is what I like now. I’m wearing my hair pulled back and so there’s nothing but my face. I love it these days. I often see people who’ve had cosmetic surgery and how the surgery fights with their face. I wouldn’t want that.

Karen Walrond

Karen Walrond

Age: 48

Profession: Writer, photographer

ON BEING AT EASE:  I’m comfortable in my own skin. I like the lines that are coming. I actually like my face better now than 20 years ago. I’m not going to hide it. I don’t know if growing up in Trinidad gave me a different perspective on aging, but it did on beauty. Everyone wears tank tops and bikinis in Trinidad — all shapes and sizes. When I went back as an adult, that really struck me.

ON NOSTALGIA: Being 10 was a great age, but I have no desire to be 10 again! My 30s were an adventure — seeing what was out there for me. My 40s have been grounding. I can’t imagine how it can get better, but every decade has been better than the last one. I come from a line of long-livers. It’s not unrealistic to think that I will live to 100. That means I have an entire lifetime ahead. That’s thrilling. Some day, perhaps, I will have to slow down. But who’s to say I won’t be ready?

M. Joy Rose

M. Joy Rose

Age: 58

Profession: Educator, activist

ON THE FIRE OF PURPOSE: My friend Pam donated her kidney to me 15 years ago. I was a decent person or she wouldn’t have given me a kidney — but her generosity shifted my priorities. I became fiercely committed to having a life that benefited not just me but other people. We can’t always change the body; I know that intimately from being ill. But we can feed the flames of life, passion, and purpose.

ON CELEBRATING REALITY: I love myself, and I have to tell myself that every day. If I didn’t, society might tell me I need a facelift or I’m too old. Or that I should be wearing heels or be 20 pounds lighter or that I shouldn’t have pink hair. That I should get some injections. The antidote to that is literally to tell myself, I love me. Then I surround myself with people who will celebrate me, and I will celebrate them.

Shiva Rose

Shiva Rose

Age: 45

Profession: Holistic lifestyle expert, blogger, activist

ON GETTING BETTER WITH AGE: I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been. I have more energy, and I feel alive creatively. I feel like I’m a little bit more fearless, maybe because I’m older. I’m taking chances, and doing everything I’ve ever wanted to do, because I realize how precious life is. Yet I’m young enough to still enjoy it.

ON SELF-CARE: I’ve been doing kundalini yoga seriously, and it has helped me tune in to my intuition. I have a morning ritual of drinking living tea and sitting in meditative silence. It has helped me not be dictated to by what the media is telling me, and instead I’m listening to what’s real and true for myself. I think if you have self-love, you appreciate what your body has been through. Like scars — look at them as warrior marks.

Mihea Kim

Mihea Kim

Age: 48

Profession: Attorney

ON OVERCOMING ILLNESS: There were years that I lay in bed with pain everywhere from arthritis and constant fevers from lupus. Doctors told me there was nothing they could do. But a close brush with death woke me up. Time passed, my body responded to my efforts to train it and regain strength. I started to run a little, holding small weights in each hand. Fast-forward 10 years to today — I’m a runner. My body and mind are awake, pain-free, strong, and alive.

ON THE VALUE OF SUFFERING: The Buddha speaks of “meaningful suffering,” a state of consciousness where one’s suffering has value. It is a state of reflection, a serious consideration of one’s experience of pain. Being sick is part of my story. I am the phoenix that rose out of the ashes.

Elizabeth Lesser

Elizabeth Lesser

Age: 63

Profession: Author of Broken Open, cofounder of Omega Institute and the Omega Women’s Leadership Center

ON AGE AND AGELESSNESS: My first job was being a midwife. I delivered enough babies to know that every one of us comes into this world in possession of a radiant, pure, ageless self. It taught me that we all have an eternal soul we come in with and that leaves with us. So on that level, there is no such thing as aging. But I am also quite attached to my body, my life here on Earth, the people in my life. I live in both of those realities — the eternal soul and the vulnerable human self.

ON THE SPIRITUAL SIDE OF AGING: My spiritual life helps me choose the good parts of aging and shrug off the scary parts. The good parts are the wisdom gained from years of living, the way I no longer need to prove myself, the sense of humor I have about my own foibles, the acceptance of others, the joy in the simplest acts of being alive.

THREE BONUS PORTRAITS

Juliette Branker

Juliette Branker

Current age: 59

Profession: Retail manager, model

On maintaining perspective: I don’t focus on looks, to be very honest. I feel like I’m lucky that I look the way I look, but it’s not a concern for me. I am from Barbados. I am the seventh of eight children. I was born in a house. If you went the hospital, you went there to die.

On the gift of time: I think aging is a beautiful process. I’m happy to be here. I don’t want to die young. I want to be here as long as I can. It was a huge loss when my soulmate died. I went to Argentina to get myself together, where I knew no one, where I didn’t speak the language…. Someone snatched a necklace from me. It was a present from him, but I had to let it go. It freed me. I let go of my past. I started to tango. I let the dead be dead and live life.

Mireille Guiliano

Mireille Guiliano

Age: 69

Profession: Author of French Women Don’t Get Fat and French Women Don’t Get Facelifts

On mental age: I’ve met people in their 30s who look old inside and outside, and people in their 70s who look and feel young. Age is in your head. Right now, I can be 20 or 30 in a minute — or at least my spirit can be which is what matters, isn’t it? I don’t look at myself in the mirror often enough to spot my facial wrinkles — a true sign of the kind of life I lead…lots of kissing and laughing, so, yes, wrinkles around the eyes and mouth — and most of the time I feel physically well, and certainly happier and stronger than at 20 or 30. And so much love to give.

The happy surprises of aging: That I would love more time for solitude. That silence would become the height of luxury. That I would be even more sensitive than I have been all my life to the beauty of the universe and to real friendship. That I would meet so many new and interesting people. That age is about why and how we live.

Brené Brown

Brene Brown

Age: 49

Profession: author of Daring Greatly and Rising Strong, among other books, professor at University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work, speaker

The problem of shame: If I had one career goal, it would be to spark a global discussion about vulnerability and shame and the dark emotions — the things that get in the way of us leading truly joyful lives from a place of worthiness, a place of “I am enough. I am imperfect, I’m vulnerable, I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time… but that doesn’t change the fact that I’m brave and worthy of love and belonging and joy.”

On opening up: The irony of being an adult is that in order to be the partner and parent and person we want to be, all of the windows we’ve closed, the doors we’ve shut, the walls we’ve built in our lives, have to come down and open up. I think that is the work of midlife.

Photography by Peter Freed

We are proud to have Experience Life‘s support as a sponsor of Emerging Women Live 2017. Join us in Denver, Oct. 5-8th, for the one-of-a-kind, intimate and interactive event!


March To This – MILCK

The 2017 Women’s March on Washington, the largest single-day protest in US history by the way, held so much weight for women across the world.

The marginalization of women can be isolating and painful, but with the new presidency and the looming implications of such, women at large joined together to have their voices heard.

The march was about unification for human rights, regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, nationality, or even preferred taste in donut. And for Connie Lim, now known as MILCK, it was also about powerful, sonic healing.

A longtime creative, MILCK has been producing under her given name for the last 8 years. Connie changed her name to MILCK to “hold herself accountable” and to strip away any previous failures. When she lost her management team in 2016, the social and personal shifts inspired her to reach out nationally and release her song of suffering, Quiet.

Connie recruited 25 strangers from around the United States to rehearse the song Quiet for the Women’s March via Skype. On January 21st, the day before the march, the international team met for the first time.

The women marched alongside the rest of the 470,000 people present (three times more people than at Trump’s inauguration, just saying…) and then broke apart from the crowd to form a flash mob.

In a semi-circle, women of all different backgrounds, ethnicities, and ages began to sing Quiet. They were held together by the common belief that expressing oppression is demanding equality, and theirs voices struck a chord with viewers.

The song was resoundingly well received. Vanity Fair, NPR, Buzzfeed, VICE and more began promoting MILCK’s song, which received over 4 million views in the 2 days following the march.

We are so proud to announce that MILCK will be joining us at Emerging Women Live 2017, where she will perform her song Quiet as well as share her inside scoop on the experience at the march. This will be an intimate, firsthand rendition of what went down in Washington that you don’t want to miss.

Hemingway, a major influence on MILCK, said, “you are so brave and quiet I forget that you are suffering.” With accessibility to the voices of women all over America and the globe, we know that passivity is no longer the norm and that massive change is on the horizon.

We can’t wait to celebrate MILCK’s magical, unifying anthem in-person with you at Emerging Women Live. Are you in?

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Power Practice #20: Healing the Mother Wound

In this audio practice, Bethany leads us in an inner-bonding meditation to help us heal from some of the limiting messages that we’ve received over our lifetimes. Establish a connection of trust inside of yourself to truly soar in the outside world.

Play Power Practice #20 – Healing the Mother Wound:

Bethany Webster is a writer, transformational coach, international speaker and what you could call a midwife of the heart.

Her work is focused on helping women heal the “mother wound” so that they can step into their full feminine power and potential.

Her goal is to share with others that our wounds are not something to avoid or be ashamed of but powerful opportunities to step into our authentic truth.

She offers an online course, teaches workshops and a coaching program for women leaders who want to accelerate their impact and leadership.


Like what you hear? Why not join the Emerging Women community for 4 full days of carefully curated practices and inspiration for personal and professional development at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO. We’d love to connect with you there!

We’re Hiring! Executive Assistant/Operations Associate

Emerging Women Power Practices help you embody the freshest ideas in personal and professional development. Get the guided audio practices right here – straight from our favorite thought leaders to you!

Today’s Power Practice comes from Bethany Webster, writer, transformational coach, international speaker and “midwife of the heart.” Her work is focused on helping women heal the “mother wound” so that they can step into their full feminine power and potential.

Emerging Women is seeking a new team member to join our growing organization.

The ideal candidate for our Executive Assistant/Operations Associate position has a keen sense of detail, has experience managing and executing projects, and can accommodate the fast pace and culture inherent to a startup company environment. You are a critical thinker who can see the larger picture, but understands how to dive into and manage the details of a project to done. We are looking for a dynamic, proactive and self-directed person who has experience using a wide array of online business technologies.

The position requires consistent communication with high-level external partners, service providers, and internal team members. We are looking for someone whose communication style reflects the sophisticated-yet-personable character of the company. Your personal communication style is warm and personable, yet professional and thorough.

Our candidate is excited to work from home, (or their favorite café), and lives in the greater Boulder/Denver area so they may participate in in-person Boulder meetings up to 2 times per week.  

Detailed project coordination experience a requirement. Must be proficient in the Microsoft Office Suite and Google applications. You must have an affinity for and experience with navigating and using a technical interface – WordPress and other similar online technologies.

We are seeking a team member who has a passion for women’s leadership and empowerment and is excited to support our important mission. Emerging Women is strongly committed strives to diversity and inclusion with regard to all of our staff, speakers, and facilitators. Candidates with diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Position duties include:

  • Executive Assistant to the CEO and other leaders as needed; manage calendar, email and anticipate needs proactively
  • Business development and project management support
  • Manage tracking, execution and communications for partner and sponsor fulfillment
  • Scheduling; meetings, podcasts, interviews etc. and distribute materials as necessary
  • Develop and document operational processes
  • Event support
  • Select AR or AP duties
  • Load content onto website and other technical platforms
  • Liaise with external technical partners, service providers, and internal team members
  • Use critical thinking to suggest improvements and changes to processes and content
  • Administrative tasks related to operations

About us:

Emerging Women is an event and membership-based business platform dedicated to the rise of feminine leadership and entrepreneurship. Our main event, Emerging Women Live, has featured speakers including Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Jane Goodall, Dr. Tererai Trent, and many more. Emerging Women Live 2017 will be held in Denver, CO on October 5th-8th.

Join our team and be a part of a growing movement to change the world through a more integrated approach to leadership, entrepreneurship, and success!

Expected Hours:

20-30 hours per week, most of which are to be performed remotely. We are currently accepting candidates local to the Boulder/Denver area only.

To apply please send the following to [email protected]:

  • Your resume
  • A cover letter about you – what you are passionate about, what type of work you consistently do well at, what you are looking for in your next job opportunity, and a summary of your business technology experience

We look forward to hearing from you!

Power Practice #19: The Pleasure Principle

Emerging Women Power Practices help you embody the freshest ideas in personal and professional development. Get the guided audio practices right here – straight from our favorite thought leaders to you!

Today’s Power Practice comes from  Zoë Kors, the beloved writer, speaker, and coach committed to transforming the way we hold our sexuality—both individually and culturally—and to creating a compassionate, loving world through the cultivation of a sisterhood of wildly-expressed women.

Her article, “6 Ways to Have Radically Intimate Sex,” quickly went viral and is currently over 2 million views with 25,000 Facebook shares. Yowza! Guess there’s a lot of us out there ready to tap deeper into our feminine pleasure.

Do you ever label your pleasure as self-indulgent, shameful, or even sinful? It can be an easy trap to fall into in this culture that often promotes caretaking over personal pleasure for women. That’s why Zoë is here to guide us in reframing pleasure as a spiritual practice – – one that can lead to a more balanced, productive, and powerful life. Yes, please!

Play Power Practice #19 – The Pleasure Principle:

zoe_1.jpgZoë Kors is the former Senior Editor and Creative Director of LA Yoga Magazine and Origin Magazine. She is a frequent contributor to Elephant Journal, MindBodyGreen, and Aloha.com.

She is a certified Co-Active Coach with the prestigious Coaches Training Institute in San Rafael, CA, and has a thriving private practice. Zoë’s work reflects her extensive study of Tantra, Zen Buddhism, meditation, yoga, breathwork, and other Eastern disciplines, which she blends with more process-oriented modalities of Western psychotherapy and Co-Active Coaching.

Her online course, The Big Libido: Find Your Feminine Fire, and live retreats, The Big Libido Live, are designed to reignite your sex drive and cultivate a deeper experience of your sexuality.

Like what you hear? Why not join Zoë Kors and the Emerging Women community for 4 full days of carefully curated inspiration for personal and professional development at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO. We’d love to connect with you there!


Finding Myself Outside of Motherhood or Infertility: The Wisdom of Self Compassion

I once believed that I was less of a woman because I was not a mother.

What are the birth defect rates?

What is the chance that the pregnancy will go to term but without a live birth?
What is the chance of having multiple births?
What is the success rate of Intra-cytoplasmic sperm injections (ICSI)?
These are the questions, I, matter-of-factly, posed to the doctor of reproductive fertility.

In the National Survey of Family Growth (2006-2010), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that 1 in 8 couples (12.5%) have trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy. In 2005, my husband Phil and I were one of those couples.

Phil and I, as many couples do, sought medical assistance. I daringly faced a rigorous schedule of subcutaneous hormone injections, antibiotics and birth control pills to stimulate and restrict the necessary pregnancy hormones. I endured numerous ultrasounds and blood drawings to monitor the levels. I experienced mood swings that were pretty unsettling and stressful. Phil and I went through uncomfortable procedures for fertility tests and egg retrieval.

After a single cycle of the procedure, the doctor advised us against trying the procedure again — because the probability of success was zero. My questions at the beginning of the process seemed in vain. I felt deflated.

The hard-coding of thoughts begins when we are children

Growing up in the city of Chennai on the southeastern coast of India, I was the youngest of three girls in a Catholic family. As a little girl, a path had been set for me — like many Indian girls growing up in the 70’s and 80’s, finishing school, getting married and having a family were obvious next steps… just as obvious as breathing.

I believed that having children was guaranteed. And in fact, I had an attachment to this idea — it was as if my self-worth was tied to this… as if my value to society rested on my ability to birth a child.

But with one statement from a doctor back in 2005, that surety was ripped out of my hands. It felt like someone punched me in the stomach without any warning. And I was terrified about losing the one thing I thought would allow me to be myself — that would allow me to shine.

Social stigma and personal beliefs are equally stifling.

Every time I received an invite to a baby shower, I cringed. I sincerely wanted to celebrate my friends and so I endured it quietly. Inside, I was screaming to be free. To be free of feeling left out, to be free of the feeling that I somehow didn’t count, to be free of the feeling that I would never be able to truly empathize with someone giving birth. I avoided seeing commercials on TV about babies. I disengaged if I heard someone say that only a parent would understand.

Talking about this wasn’t an option. I worked in the male-dominated engineering world, and there was no room for me to let my guard down — I had to stay tough. Not realizing that I was experiencing a loss, I didn’t really think seeking guidance or counseling was necessary. Besides, socially, I felt it made people uncomfortable — and so, I began to believe I just needed to “suck it up” and stop what I was feeling.

Family and friends were supportive, in ways that I allowed them. I remember one friend in particular. She told me that my feelings reminded her of what parents feel when their kids leave home for the first time; that empty nest feeling of sadness. This somehow encouraged me to feel less alone. It opened a little window for me to explore this differently. My father had been a lifelong meditator and so I began to explore meditation.

Begin exploring how to re-write your code.

I would sit in silence, allowing the anger to pulse through my body, allowing the tears to flow down my face, releasing grief, loss and pain. I was guided by teachers to wonder about the questions that surfaced during meditation. The one question that repeatedly surfaced was this: who am I?

Ready to experience your life outside of others’ praise or criticism?

Was I a wife? Surely if I was only a wife, then how could I explain all these other roles I had. Or how could I explain everything I felt or thought about? So, if I wasn’t a wife, then who was I? Was I an engineer or a senior leader of the management team? Surely I was more than that. So, then who was I? Was I a reflection of my bank account? That didn’t make sense to me. So then who was I? Was I a mother? The answer was a resounding no. So then who was I? You get the idea.

My discovery in these moments of stillness was that there was somebody making all these observations. Somebody that realized I still had value, even though I wasn’t a mother. Somebody that loved me even though I couldn’t play the one role that nature intended for me. Somebody that showed me compassion in the truest sense possible. Somebody who could give me the positive affirmation I needed. Somebody who understood that I was hurting. Somebody that realized that what I was not, was not who I was. This somebody was me. This was the beginning of the answer to my question of who I was.

This realization encouraged me to dig deeper. I started to challenge the notion that motherhood was the only path — as if being childless makes one’s life meaningless. I allowed myself to feel the sadness and the anger and loss — it was my right. Frequently I repeated to myself all the things I was not — to get closer to who I was. I started practicing action with clarity and conviction while staying detached from outcome. In meditation I created space for the knowledge of who I was to emerge — it could only happen in that space of stillness and silence.

Get started right now with this free download – a powerful guided meditation on self compassion. 

What you are is not who you are.As a woman leader, if you find yourself at odds with your beliefs or social stigmas, like I did, I encourage you to:

  • Practice first and foremost, self compassion, self acceptance, and self love.
  • Challenge the notion of a “normal” or “standard” path to solutions, goals, or life.
  • Gently ask yourself if you show up in life as more than the roles you play.
  • Practice decision-making with conviction and clarity while staying detached to outcome.
  • Explore your relationship with being uncomfortable… your relationship with discomfort.

I learned what I was not… but that does not stop me from being who I am.

Rita Devassy
About the Author
Rita Devassy, the founder and CEO of Deva Seed, brings leadership experience from the tough corporate world of tech. Conforming in a male-dominated culture left her personally depleted, but then called to bring mindfulness back to the corporate space. Now, she builds up business leaders who believe that self-inquiry, generosity and compassion are required hallmarks of an effective, successful leader.

Rita holds degrees in Business Management and  Computer and Information Science along with a certificate in Authentic Leadership from Naropa University and is on the faculty for The Foundations program at the Authentic Leadership Center.She lives with her  husband and their miniature pinscher dogs, Oliver and Oscar.  She meditates often, can’t parallel park to save her life, and seeks the American culture she missed in her childhood vicariously through re-runs of The Brady Bunch and Leave it To Beaver.

From Knife Skills to Life Skills, Executive Chef Dana Shares Her Journey

“I don’t know what else I would do. Food has always been an integral part of my life,” said Executive Chef Dana Murrell.

Chef Dana’s role in the culinary world has taken many forms throughout her life and career, from placing in a high school cooking competition to leading Green Chef as executive chef today.

But some things have always been constants for Chef Dana: her philosophy of food, her determination to make it in a male-dominated industry, and her commitment to family.

Chef Dana shares how she made her own way in the culinary field and what it took to find where she really fit.

Chef Dana

“You have to prove yourself, and I think that makes you stronger and harder.”

Cooking has long been viewed as a domestic task, a woman’s role. Yet in professional culinary circles, men are known to rule the roost. Dana is no stranger to having to lean in, and dig in her heels, among male colleagues.

Men have easy entry into the culinary profession: start as a dishwasher and work your way up. Not so for women, who seldom get hired for such entry-level positions. Instead, like Dana, women are expected to earn a culinary degree as the first step of proving their bonafides.

Even after graduating from culinary school and working in restaurants, Dana encountered “a lot of hurdles.” Such as a chef who made it his mission to bring her to tears and a line cook who refused to listen to her despite her expertise.

Of course, it takes more than one person to transform an industry, so Dana had to take control of her own experience.

“You have to continue to push yourself to show them that you can not only play with the big boys but that you can do it faster and harder and better. It makes them respect you. And I think that makes you a stronger person in general and a stronger person in your field.”

“I was content in knowing what I thought was my place.”

Earning the respect of her male colleagues wasn’t the only hurdle. Executive chefs are expected to work 50-60 hours a week, typically late into the night and on weekends, which doesn’t always mesh with motherhood.

It was difficult for Dana to find a restaurant that could accommodate her family’s schedule, and in those that would, advancing professionally was impossible. She couldn’t accept more hours to move up, so she ultimately decided to support her husband (also a chef) and children by taking a daytime line cook job.

“My place was a supporting role for [my husband] to be an executive chef. I was working during the day and home at night with the kids so he could live out his passion as an executive chef, which required working night shifts. So I wasn’t looking for anything else for myself.”

Cue Green Chef. While trawling Craigslist for job postings for her husband, Dana found an intriguing call for a chef to develop 10 new recipes a week. She jumped on it and has been Green Chef’s executive chef since the beginning.

Each week, she and her team mastermind recipes for Green Chef’s organic meal kits that customers cook at home. Chef Dana gets to not only bring her culinary creations to life for thousands of people but also work a more desirable schedule that allows for family time.

“There’s always work to be done here, but I get to have weekends off and still be involved in food. It’s huge changing over to Green Chef. My husband’s quite jealous, and it’s been really exciting for me as a chef. I am shipping 5-star-restaurant-quality food to consumers.”

Chef Dana sees the possibilities as endless. She can cook what she wants while giving other busy working professionals what they want: quick, simple, delicious meals.

“I think cooking is extremely empowering.”

Even professional chefs have to ask themselves when they get home, “What’s for dinner tonight?” But you don’t need culinary training to apply Chef Dana’s advice for achieving success in the kitchen: “Keep it simple, stupid. Or stupid-simple.”

Chef Dana strongly believes that simple, easy, no-fuss food is also the most delicious food. She also knows not everyone has the know-how to cook without a recipe or confidence in their abilities.

“I know cooking is a skill that I take for granted. I can go home, open my fridge, pull out a few things, and through knowledge and training, just whip up a dinner. That in and of itself is empowering. It’s amazing. When I take a step back and look at it through someone else’s lens, see what I’m capable of, it’s really kind of cool.”

At Green Chef, she’s able to carry out her passion for creating delicious, easy-to-prepare food and empowering others to cook at home. Every recipe Chef Dana develops and sends to customers comes with simple instructions and prepped ingredients to cook a complete meal in just about 30 minutes.

“There’s a need for more women doing what we do.”

Chef Dana hopes to not only empower more women to take charge of their own kitchens but also help them excel in the professional culinary world.

“I want to set up a scholarship fund that’s specifically geared toward women in the culinary business. It’s such an important field for everybody to be a part of, and I don’t think that women should be excluded. They have to go to culinary school, so what’s a good way to help them start that journey for their life?”

You can try Chef Dana’s masterpieces yourself by joining Green Chef. Their meal kits have everything you need to cook delicious dinners: organic ingredients, easy recipes, all delivered. Get $50 off your first order.

Celebrating the Summer Solstice

Summer is my favorite time of the year. I love the expansive feeling that the heat brings. I find myself stretching to the sun, open and receiving.

In chinese medicine this is called yang – as opposed to the more inward yin cycle of the colder months. This is a time to make possibilities real, to tend to the seedlings of vision and purpose that we planted in the spring so that we may have a rich harvest in the Fall. 

Our hard work of introspection and deep diving is ready to express itself through joy and celebration. Can you feel it?

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June 20th marks Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year. Let’s not let this ancient holiday pass us by without reveling and delighting in it together! How will you celebrate? Will you observe the first rays of dawn? Will you share a radiant sunset with a friend? Will you dance and make merry as you move through midsummer’s day?

However you mark the Solstice, one thing is certain: it’s time to move, to love, and to connect as we use the power of the sun to catalyze our work in the world. 

As a fun Solstice gift, we’d like to offer an extra $100 off tickets to Emerging Women Live ($400 in savings total). Simply register by June 20th using the code Solstice, and get ready for a community celebration like no other, October 5-8th in colorful Colorado.


It is so beneficial to stay connected to the earth and her cycles, to celebrate her transitions and transformations, to invite awareness of how her rebirth is mirrored in our individual selves.

Share your Solstice rituals with us in the comments section below, and register here to join us for the rich harvest that is Emerging Women Live in the Fall!

PS – In Russia and Ukraine, Summer Solstice celebrants jump over bonfires to display their courage and faith. Emerging Women Firewalk anyone??

Walk Your Fire

Do you have a fire of truth burning so brightly in you that you cannot but follow its light?

Are you ready to let go, to burn what no longer serves so that a new you may rise from the ashes?

The Warrior Goddess Firewalk

One of the first things we are taught as children is that fire is dangerous – and it burns.

When you first see someone walk on fire, or you walk yourself, this fundamental law shatters. Suddenly the world is new and full of possibilities.

That’s why we’re thrilled to include The Warrior Goddess  Workshop and Firewalk with HeatherAsh Amara at this year’s Emerging Women Live 2017 in Denver, CO.

Watch this beautiful video for a glimpse of a firewalk, EW-style:

What have you been telling yourself that might not be true? Firewalking challenges our limiting beliefs so we can lead from an expanded view of what is possible for our lives. This is true power – a power that translates into action and responsibility, for after walking on fire, we know that our lives are truly ours to create.

Remember when Oprah did a firewalk with Tony Robbins as a part of her Next Chapter series? It’s intense! Watch the video clip:

We can’t wait to participate in Emerging Women’s distinctly feminine version of this powerful ritual, led with heart and grace by our friend, wise teacher and beautiful soul, HeatherAsh Amara.

To emerge is to become manifest, to come into full view, to become known….to rise.

We women are not meant to walk this path alone. This path of fire walking is a collective path.

And it is through the heat of our shared stories that our hearts blaze with ancient memories of love and belonging, flickers of being that are buried so deep within us that only a fire of true purpose can spark its becoming.

Are you coming?

Follow the flame. Walk your fire. Live the truth of who you are.


Life Beyond the Coffee Enema: Thoughts on Emergence

Yes, of course it hurts.

You’ve heard about coffee enemas right? An expensive cold brew you don’t get to drink. It goes in a different hole. Drinking coffee activates your bowels and improves peristalsis. Why would you…?!?! Never mind, I’ll never understand how this became a trend.

Spring’s got me thinking about bowel movements, pressure, frustration, self-judgment, irritability & anxiety. These are common feelings this time of year, believe it or not. Especially in Maine, we’re behind Alaska as the last to Spring. It’s a sloooow start and I can feel the agitation.

The truth is, spring is uncomfortable. Even if you slept like a champion all winter. Even if you live in a sunny state. Spring is like puberty, it’s awkward. It’s the opposite of smooth, it’s muddy, messy and there’s a lot of change happening at once.

The idea of reaching for a “coffee enema” to get your bud to sprout FASTER isn’t what mother nature intended. It’s natural to wake up after a long hibernating season NOT feeling “springy & sparkly.” You’re supposed to feel like you just woke up! The key here is to understand you’re in a season and not get swept away trying to “fix” it.

Magazine covers of women frolicking & jumping in spring dresses are designed to get you to buy spring. They know you want to sparkle & shine. And a dress or a brightly colored hoodie (whatever your fashion sense) can give you a boost. But the idea that you roll out of bed spring morning feeling like vibrant pastels is a MYTH. It is myth that does not serve women well. 

Spring is a dance, it’s playful, like a game of peek-a-boo. You  will get impatient, angry and frustrated if you BLAME yourself for being a “bud” and reach for a “quick fix”. Don’t make me wave my bright yellow CAUTION sign around, while break dancing, until you STOP and look at me. I will shout, “Embrace your awkward! Don’t miss your emergence”.

Doing anything other than nourishing actually causes weakness & atrophy. You become less resilient, more susceptible to disease, more irritable, impatient, critical of yourself and others. Choosing this less natural path forms a habit of swinging from one extreme to the next and making life, which should be a series of natural transitions, more difficult.

Are you ready to live beyond the coffee enema?

Ready to honor your emergence?

Here are my 5 favorite ways to flourish, sparkle & shine – no matter what the season.

Get to know your environment!1. Take a walk, often.

Over steamy Thai curry, my friend told me (with awesome hand gestures) she actually watched spring come to life! Other years, she’s looked up and there spring was. This year, she told me how much a plant grew each day, which fern’s fronds uncurled and which plants grew in her neighborhood. She took it all in – the smells, colors and essence of spring.

Spring has lit her up, and in return it lit me up.

She figured out how to make time slow down by enjoying the season.

Go for a walk! Get to know your environment. Look up. Look down. Return to the same places every day and mark the changes – nature’s emergence. Have a conversation with nature.

Seeing change, makes you resilient to change. Besides, your liver functions better when you’re moving.

De-clutter, shed or minimize, depending on your Feng shui school of thought.2. Clean your house.

This should cause a sigh of relief. De-clutter, shed or minimize, depending on your Feng shui school of thought. First, the surface clean. Then, the deep clean. Then, the ruthless elimination of stuff. Nah, it doesn’t have to be ruthless. But it helps when you’re guided by a vision of who/what/how you want to be.

Another friend recently told me, over the same bowl of curry, that out of “nowhere” she’s madly inventorying everything she owns. She either has to find a home for it, give it away or throw it away. If you find yourself “spring cleaning” naturally, go with it! Though the desire to “clear out the nest” is real, people unfortunately confuse this urge for cleaning out their intestines, hence the coffee enemas. Let’s stick to the house.

As a guest teacher for a wellness program that includes this step, I am always amazed when students get to the de-clutter section how much transformation happens from filling double-sized garbage bags with stuff and taking them away. I encourage you to make time for it, even if you take 15 minutes a day until each room is complete.

Wild foods help you reclaim the highest nutritional content available. 3. Bend down, eat a green (dandelion) leaf every day you can.

Eating wild food (often) is one of the best ways to build strength, resilience and vigor. Wild food has survived the elements. Weeds have the power to grow through cement. They’ve learned how to adapt in less than ideal habitats. You want wild in your diet!

Eat dandelion because they’re the most easily identifiable weed and they are available in many seasons. There are many edible options on your way from the house to the car or bus, on your walks and along roadsides. If you want to expand your weed diet, google “Herb Walk” in your community. You can also look for herbal medicine that uses “wild crafted” herbs or find a friend that forages. Even organic farming practices have bred nutrition out of plants. Wild foods help you reclaim the highest nutritional content available. They’re also slightly bitter, a taste American palettes have lost. By increasing the amount of bitter in your diet, you naturally lower sweet cravings and change your taste buds to desire more nutrition. Buh bye, willpower!

Skin brushing moves your lymph for overall health, it's not superficial.4. Exfoliate. Scrub the s#%t out of your skin.

This year I slacked on my winter sloughing and I can feel it. It’s like my skin’s not breathing as well and it’s less fluid. (This is from someone who spent years skin brushing). The lymph doesn’t have a pump like your heart but movement and flow is equally important. The lymph gets pumped by moving your tissues. I never knew how impactful movement of any kind is, until my partner told me what happens to stroke or TBI patients in the neuro unit. In the rehab hospital where she trains, when someone becomes immobile, even for a day, the body shows signs of breakdown.

Skin brushing moves your lymph for overall health, it’s not superficial. Although the skin smoothing and exfoliating is awesome, the real gig is that you get the benefits of exercise and an overall feeling of wellness. A consistent routine of skin brushing 1-2 times per week is beneficial. It’s especially great after a long day of travel, sitting, or road tripping. If you try skin brushing just be careful what kind of brush you get – not too firm, not too soft.

You can also use a washcloth, “shower gloves,” or a “fascia blaster.” Facia blasting is different than skin brushing, it works to break up fascia but the goal here is circulation, lymph movement and blood flow. I’ve never tried the fascia blaster, but it comes highly recommended for relieving pain, inflammation and cellulite.

Anger is a part fo every emergence. 5. Get pissed.

There’s a lot to be angry about. But if you’re socialized female, you were taught that anger is dangerous, impolite and not tolerated. You were shamed out of anger.

It’s the shaming of anger that causes problems, not anger itself. In traditional Chinese medicine, spring is associated with the wood element. The wood’s “climate” is windy and the “emotion” is anger. When these two are flowing in harmony, anger comes to pass. How do you let anger pass? The first step is acknowledging it. Anger is a part of every emergence. Before every blooming tree was an agitated sapling. Make this your motto and you can move through anger as it becomes food to grow!

Get angry in the presence of other women who have your back through the process.

Want some healthy ways to move through anger? Exercise, kickboxing, kundalini yoga, sex, singing (especially angry songs), dance, and poetry. And while we’re in the wood element, the vocal quality is “shout.” There are workshops for this, which is great so you avoid unleashing on others. I haven’t seen that be effective on people you love.

Let your anger fuel your passion to take action. My whole business started because I was angry. I was angry that people get sick from food related illness. I was angry that the food system doesn’t care about health or animals, it cares about profits. I was angry because sexism exists in the healthcare system. What are you angry about?

This essay was inspired by my Instagram post “What Stage of Bloom are you in?”

My friend Yasmine responded with this beautiful poem by Swedish poet Karin Boye:

Yes Of Course It Hurts

Yes, of course it hurts when buds are breaking.
Why else would the springtime falter?
Why would all our ardent longing
bind itself in frozen, bitter pallor?
After all, the bud was covered all the winter.
What new thing is it that bursts and wears?
Yes, of course it hurts when buds are breaking,
hurts for that which grows
and that which bars.

Yes, it is hard when drops are falling.
Trembling with fear, and heavy hanging,
cleaving to the twig, and swelling, sliding –
weight draws them down, though they go on clinging.
Hard to be uncertain, afraid and divided,
hard to feel the depths attract and call,
yet sit fast and merely tremble –
hard to want to stay
and want to fall.

Then, when things are worst and nothing helps
the tree’s buds break as in rejoicing,
then, when no fear holds back any longer,
down in glitter go the twig’s drops plunging,
forget that they were frightened by the new,
forget their fear before the flight unfurled –
feel for a second their greatest safety,
rest in that trust
that creates the world.

marcie-goldman.png Blog written by Marcie Goldman. There’s nothing that lights up Marcie more than getting you glowy-good-health. Her work combines functional medicine strategies with nourishing Wise Woman Traditions, a stellar combination she’s honed over the last 15 years in her professional one-on-one practice & group programs. When Marcie finally realized she couldn’t stop people’s search for the “quick fix,” she created Mojo Mastery Month. This popular health makeover program celebrates food, nourishment and your body’s natural ability to heal. She invites you to sample her 7-day program for free including her menu of over 21 recipes!

Don’t miss Marcie and a whole tribe of like-minded women at this year’s Emerging Women Live event. This October, you can find yourself surrounded with real support, authentic thought leadership and inspiring stories. From the talented Elizabeth Gilbert to Esther Perel on sex and Sera Beak on spirituality, it’s an integrative experience you won’t want to miss! Register today!

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Key Tools for Killer Presentations

Want to stand up and speak out with confidence, genuinely inspiring and influencing your audience?

Whether it’s a high-stakes presentation on a stage or a high-impact conversation in an office, Nan Crawford has some tools for you (and for an audio version of these tools, listen to Power Practice #16: Stepping Up and Speaking Out).


When preparing an impactful presentation, Nan says, it’s important to consider 2 realms: the internal factors of strategy and the external factors of delivery.

Internal Strategy

Ask yourself:

  1. Who is my audience?
  2. What do they need?
  3. How do I prepare to deliver that to them?

Identifying your audience and their needs is pretty straightforward. But how do you deliver on those needs if you’re busy worrying, “How do I keep from freaking out?!” That’s where #3 comes in.

It’s all about focus, Nan says. If you struggle with stage-fright or nerves, you can let go of that jagged energy by shifting your focus from fear to desire. Shift your focus from fear of failure to your desire to make a difference. Shift your focus from the fear of judgement to the desire to be generous. Shift your focus from a fear of rejection to a desire to connect. From fear of forgetting what you’re going to say to a desire to guide the audience to a place of discovery.

Shifting focus from fear to desire to be of service will allow you to connect with your audience and their needs in a way that is authentic, confident, and effective.

External Delivery

Ask yourself:

  1. How will I walk into the room? Where will I land? How will I hold my body?
  2. What am I aware of in terms of my breathing?
  3. Are my voice, facial expressions, and gestures congruent with my message?
  4. What do I want my audience to feel, say, and do?

The way you move and position yourself sends messages to the audience before you’ve even spoken a word. If you plan ahead of time how to position yourself so that energy is flowing through your spine, you’ll foster an immediate connection between your audience and your intention.

Breathing is another opportunity to send a clear message. So many of us live in a world of full plates and fast lanes. When you are “extravagant with our breath,” as Nan encourages, it allows you a moment of clarity to choose words that are delicious and juicy. More than that, it’s an act of generosity to your audience, giving them time and space to let your ideas (and their own) really land.

By taking big full breaths you give energy to your voice, allowing for concise, crisp, and clear words spoken with conviction. You connect with your body, creating facial expressions and gestures that are vibrant, alive, and compelling.

All of these factors are driven by your overall intention. Writing action verbs in the margins of your presentation will help you connect with what you want your audience to do, say, and feel. Maybe you want to challenge them or shake them up. Perhaps you need to dismiss a concern or clarify a point. You can paint a vivid picture. You can advocate, warn, or reassure.

It’s important to note: the question is not “What do I want them to learn?” If your intention is to inform, you are not going to inspire our audience to take action. “We’re all drowning in information,” Nan says. “What we hunger for is insight and inspiration, for energy and encouragement.”

We’re thrilled to have Nan Crawford bringing her insight and inspiration to the stage at Emerging Women Live 2017, along with killer presentations from Elizabeth Gilbert, Sera Beak, Alicia Garza, Esther Perel, Amanda Steinberg, and so many more. Register today for an some unforgettable energy and encouragement:


Remember: how you deliver your message is just as vital as what you have to say. With Nan’s tools, you are well on your way to giving a presentation that will genuinely inspire and influence your audience.

And be sure to tell us what killer presentations you have in the works in the comments!

Connecting with Your Soul’s Voice

A wild variety of voices influence us everyday.

How do we know which to listen to as we work to live our truths? Harvard trained scholar Sera Beak joined us for May’s Emerging Women Power Boost to help navigate the jungle, connecting us with the gem of all voices – the Soul.

We’ve all absorbed a myriad of external voices over the years: from our family, our upbringing, our schooling, religion, media, culture, friends, and other entrepreneurs. We’ve also got a chorus of internal voices: our shadow selves, our wounds and fragments, our beliefs and our complexes, like the infamous Inner Critic. There are negative aspects of our ego that like to shame, judge, blame, and compare in dogged pursuit of success and admiration, creating fear and stress. There are even aspects of our more spiritualized ego – which Sera calls a “tricky little sucker” – that can come across holier-than-thou and kick our butts for not being spiritual enough.

In short, there’s a virtual cocktail party of voices inside of most of us, most of the time.

But there is one voice that knows us best of all, says Sera. It’s eternal and infinite, connected to all that is, yet also awesomely unique for each one of us. It’s the root of our inner guidance and grace. It knows us better than any teacher, tradition, coach, therapist, friend, or woman named Sera Beak, Sera says with a mischeivous smile. It knows when and how we can emerge into this world and offer our unique gifts while staying in integrity and in alignment with our inner truth.

That voice is our Soul with a capital S. And it wants to spend more time with us.

The Soul is the wisest and most loving aspect of ourselves. It is often quite subtle, more of a gentle whisper than a “big cosmic light show.” It is there to remind us what we already know. You may feel it poking at you through mundane channels – a song on the radio, a sign on a bus, an overheard snippet of conversation. When we take the time to create the space to connect with our Soul, Sera says, it shows our Soul that we’re ready to listen, allowing us to turn up the volume on those little nudges.

And turn up the volume we did. Sera’s beautiful guided meditation helped us pump more life-force into our bodies and this earth by tuning in to the warmth, expansion, and unconditional love of the distinct divine being that is seeking to incarnate through each one of us.

We asked questions to our Souls, and practiced recognizing the flavor of the reply.

“It feels and sounds familiar,” Sera says, “like Oh yeah. This is me. This is my truth. This is my Soul.” Which is not to say that it will always sound “spiritual.” It has nuance and flavor, showing up as what we need in the moment. “And sometimes we might need a dirty joke,” she laughs. We ended the meditation feeling more grounded, devoted, present, alive, real, and connected to our truest selves.

Try the meditation for yourself (and your Soul) by watching the archive video here. There’s a 30 day free trial if you’re not already a member, so you can join us live for the next Power Boost, too.

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And just a reminder from Sera: she uses the word “imagine” in the meditation because imagination is an excellent tool for greasing the wheels between our human consciousness and the divine.

But, she says emphatically, this is not make believe. 


We can’t wait to see Sera Beak in her 3rd appearance at Emerging Women Live 2017, October 5-8th in Denver, CO. Alicia Garza (co-founder of Black Lives Matter), Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat Pray Love), Esther Perel (author of Mating in Captivity), and so many more will be there, plus workshops, practices, a fire walk (!), coaching, dancing, connection with amazing women… it’s 4 days you’ll never forget.

Emerging Women Leadership Series @ Impact HUB Academy

Are you craving an opportunity to share authentically with women who face similar challenges and opportunities in bringing their work to the world?

We’re excited to announce the Emerging Women Leadership Series @ Impact HUB Academy in Boulder, Colorado!

Join us for an interactive evening of connection, wisdom, and deep dives to support you on your journey as a female leader.

This series is designed to grow community and support for women of impact to help you succeed in business. Each event will have its own unique theme, including diverse panelists and power circle discussion topics, not to mention libations and evening nibbles!

The Themes:

Women in Money // June 21st

Did you know women will gain control of 2/3rds of the nation’s wealth in a few years? We’ve invited some of the top money minds to help us identify opportunities to shift the world of finance and investing in a more sustainable and collectively beneficial direction with feminine leadership.

Women in Naturals // July 27th

We’re seeing huge opportunities the for growth of women’s leadership in the natural products arena. Join this panel of conscious leaders and entrepreneurs as we discuss how to bring the sustainability and self-care principles behind their products to influence the industry as a whole.

Women in Fitness and Outdoors // August 31st

These leaders are shifting the focus from looking good to feeling strong, capable, and connected to our bodies and surroundings. We’ll discuss how women in this market are increasing their impact by redefining fitness and outdoors as grounds for personal growth, transformation, and mutual empowerment.

Women in Social Impact // September 28th

Big change takes big vision, plus a healthy dose of know-how when it comes to execution. Join this panel of movement-makers as we discuss feminine leadership strategies that mobilize the masses to help girls, women, their communities, and the planet.

Women in Politics // October 26th

Is it safe to say we’re all fed up with the current state of politics? Let’s hear from the women working to get us back on track by running for office and managing campaigns with empathy, courage, authenticity, and heart.

Women in Tech // November 30th

We all know the challenges in this male dominated industry, but what are the opportunities? Hear from the CEOs, founders, and mentors leveraging their innate creativity and feminine leadership talents to elevate the technology landscape.

The Speakers:

We’ll be announcing the powerhouse list of speakers for this series soon. Stay tuned!

The Format:

6:00-6:30 Authentic Networking

6:30-7:15 Panel Discussion

7:15-7:45 Power Circles Breakout

7:45-8:00 ReGroup, Comments, and Close

8:00-8:30 Drinks + Connect

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We can’t wait to see you at Impact HUB in Boulder for the Emerging Women Leadership Series! Mark your calendars and register today.

Power Practice #18: Be Before Do

We all find ourselves off-kilter or off-center sometimes. And it can lead to self-sabotaging behaviors and default responses that we later regret. But what if we explored a different path?

Henna Inam brings her 20 years of executive coaching experience to identity the 5 step process that occurs when we are thrown off by a situation, and leads us in a guided practice to recover to our most authentic and adaptive selves when we are triggered.

Build your self-confidence, your courage, and your resilience in the face of criticism, insecurity, or fear with this transformative Power Practice from Henna Inam.

Play Power Practice #18 – Be Before Do:

Henna Inam is a sought after speaker, successful author, and CEO of Transformational Leadership Inc. Her unique workshops, tools, and online community help managers create innovative, engaged teams that drive measurable results.

Henna and her global partner team work with Fortune 500 companies to deliver executive coaching, leadership development, and team workshops. Clients include Coca-Cola, Google, Johnson & Johnson, Novartis, CNN, and Bank of America. Prior to starting her company, Henna worked for 20 years at Procter & Gamble and Novartis. She has lived or worked across North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Like what you hear? Why not get in on four full days of power practices, movement, inspiration and collaboration at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO. Join us!

Freedom Dreamer: Alicia Garza of Black Lives Matter

We are honored today to announce Alicia Garza as a keynote speaker at Emerging Women Live 2017! In a January article she wrote for Mic, Alicia asked,

“Can we build a movement of millions with the people who may not grasp our black, queer, feminist, intersectional, anti-capitalist, anti-imperialist ideology but know that we deserve a better life and who are willing to fight for it and win?”

For the sake of Black people everywhere, for the sake of a future we want to live in, the answer must be yes.

Alicia Garza is the Special Projects Director for the National Domestic Workers Alliance, the nation’s leading voice for dignity and fairness for the millions of domestic workers in the United States. She, along with Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors, also co-founded the Black Lives Matter network, a globally recognized organizing project that focuses on combatting anti-Black state-sanctioned violence and the oppression of all Black people.

“Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise,” Alicia says in the Herstory of the Black Lives Matter Movement. “It is an affirmation of Black folks’ contributions to this society, our humanity, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.”

Not Black? Think this movement doesn’t effect you? Think again. No one is on the sidelines for this, and no one can afford to let Black Lives Matter be sidelined.

“When Black people cry out in defense of our lives, which are uniquely, systematically, and savagely targeted by the state, we are asking you, our family, to stand with us in affirming Black lives. Not just all lives. Black lives,” says Alicia. “Please do not change the conversation by talking about how your life matters, too. It does, but we need less watered down unity and a more active solidarities with us, Black people, unwaveringly, in defense of our humanity. Our collective futures depend on it.”

To collectively create the new paradigms we envision for the world, it is necessary for us to become educated allies of the Black Lives Matter movement, regardless of our race. To think this crucial issue could be skirted would be a grave mistake for all marginalized groups seeking to rise above.

As the New Yorker notes, Alicia “…dismisses the kind of liberalism that finds honor in nonchalance.” Alicia says, “No, I want you to care. I want you to see all of me.”

As a queer Black woman, Alicia Garza’s leadership and work challenge the misconception that only cisgender Black men encounter police and state violence. While the tragic deaths of Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown were catalysts for the emergence of the BLM movement, Alicia is clear:

“In order to truly understand how devastating and widespread this type of violence is in Black America, we must view this epidemic through of a lens of race, gender, sexual orientation and gender identity.”

We must strive to really see each other, to honor each other, and more than that, we must credit each other’s contributions to the struggle, not just toot our own horns. We must acknowledge the systematic oppression Black women and their communities have endured, and the work they have done and continue to move all of us towards a more just future. And we must lift them up for it, instead of simply jumping on their shoulders.

“When we are able to end hyper-criminalization and sexualization of Black people and end the poverty, control, and surveillance of Black people, every single person in this world has a better shot at getting and staying free. When Black people get free, everybody gets free.” – Alicia Garza

May it be so. We hope you’ll join us in vocal and active support of Black Lives Matter, and join us to see Alicia Garza in person at Emerging Women Live 2017, October 5-8th in Denver, CO.


Reclaim Your Voice Story

Wokie Nwabueze knows how to communicate. Negotiation, facilitation, mediation – you name it. “If it exists, I’m certified in it,” she says.

She started her career teaching kids, parents, and teachers in tough communities how to communicate clearly and without violence. After her first year of law school, she began to work in corporate spaces, and became very interested in women who were having trouble communicating their needs in the workplace.

She noticed a trend. Women were leaving the sessions knowing what to say, but not knowing why they were hesitant to say it. She quickly realized that the existing communication frameworks and execution strategies (“be assertive” “be confident”) weren’t addressing who we are deep down

That realization changed everything for Wokie. “Who I was was SHY, well into my mid-20s. I was a people pleaser without revealing it outwardly. I thought I could sacrifice more than everyone else, and I thought that was ‘strong.’ I was unwilling to rock the boat, and somehow that felt empowering, or even felt gracious. But the truth was I was disconnected from my voice.”

As she began to mine her own Voice Story, she was able to cultivate the self-awareness and personal transformation crucial to truly effective communication with others. She now dedicates her work to helping women do the same, as she did in our Emerging Women Power Boost (if you’re a member, click HERE to watch the archive). Here are some takeaways from that memorable event.

What is a Voice Story?

Studies show that for girls, confidence in voice starts to slip around age 9. While our confidence is falling, Wokie says, we are also starting to look out at the world to determine our value. For a lot of us, that’s when things start to fall apart, and it takes some serious work as adults to get our Voice Stories sorted.

Wokie started the Seen and Heard project, interviewing women to find those points in time when their voices had been hushed. This isn’t limited to times someone told you to be quiet. For example, Wokie remembers being in 6th or 7th grade. Her class took an IQ test, and it was announced that she had the highest score. For painfully shy 11 year old Wokie, it was humiliating – it made her feel different and alone. She calls it “the moment I got the handbook for playing small.” She stopped pushing herself outside of her comfort zone, believing there would be negative consequences if she was “smarter” or in any way different than everyone else.

Our Voice Stories color every communication we have. They can tint the outcome of conversations, negotiations, and conflicts if they are left unexplored.

Exploring Your Voice Story

Exploring your Voice Story means mining for the moments when something shifted.

One way is to identify discomfort in your body. When you have hard conversations, where do you feel it? In your stomach? In your hands? In your throat? Try to connect the dots. When else do you feel that way? When did you first feel that way?

Be sure to explore with love and curiosity. Sit with these memories and watch yourself without judgement. Journal, take a walk, cry, make art, talk with a friend – whatever helps you process. Come to understand what was lost, and begin to take it back. We can reclaim what was lost to shift our future. 

Another approach is to look at certain periods of your life. When was the last time you felt like you could express yourself fully without hesitation or fear? Young children don’t struggle with their voices. “We are not born quiet,” Wokie says. Something happens that changes the way we see ourselves and our right to be seen and heard in the world. Look at those moments when you stopped feeling that you could communicate without apology. Think about the points in time when something happened to make you feel less valuable, or that you should be less bright and shiny, or that you should be quiet.

When you get there, remember that this process involves some pain, but our goal is curiosity and reclamation. We have to go back and identify with real compassion what we lost. You can’t change the past, you can’t judge yourself or others for it, but you can understand it. Start to follow the threads with curiosity and compassion, and it will all begin to unfold.

How much of reclaiming what we lost is about grieving?

Grief is important, Wokie says, but we need to do that grieving from a place of hopefulness for the future. Transformational grieving means moving the grief through our bodies (Wokie says music helps her) and letting it go, because on the other side of grief there is possibility.

If we can move grief through us and find a good nugget, then the grief was not for nothing. If the things that have happened to you allow you to become who you are, if we can mine for those nuggets in our Voice Stories and use them to heal ourselves and bring us more fully into our voices, then the hardship wasn’t without reward.

And remember: Saying what you want to say, getting what you want – it’s not about cultivating power over someone else, it’s about being centered in YOU.

Thank you, Wokie Nwabueze!


Want to watch the archive of Wokie’s Power Boost? Start your 30 day Free Trial on the Emerging Women Leadership Platform to get access.

Letting the Divine Take the Lead

In this culture, we’re taught that we have to strive and push and exhaust ourselves if we want anything to happen in our lives, and especially in our businesses. But there’s another, radically different approach: offer the whole thing back to the Divine and ask to be shown the way forward.

Tosha Silver spoke to this at Emerging Women Live in her talk on Outrageous Openness. We thought you’d enjoy this clip – let us know what you think!

SO. GOOD.

And if you think you can handle FOUR FULL DAYS of inspiration and nourishment like this, plus workshops, coaching, and deep connection with the brilliant women changing the world, then register to join us at Emerging Women Live 2017, October 5-8th in Denver, CO.

Is there Magic in the Mess?

Dear Emerging Women,

It’s been almost 6 months since our annual Emerging Women Live event, and a lot has transpired since then. A LOT. There is a deep political and social disharmony being felt in our country right now. There is a dis-ease being felt in the world. And women worldwide are at the front lines of creating a new world order.

One thing I know for sure, when we are creating a new paradigm, there is no blueprint. And it can get messy. But today, I am cultivating gratitude for the mess. Here’s why:

“In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.” – Carl Jung

Chaos puts us in touch with our desires

I’m not saying that mess is the end-game. I dream of – I yearn for and actively work toward – equality, justice, peace, civility. And on a micro level, it’s nice to have things run smoothly: to have a perfect business model, to have people on your team that are high performers and super easy to work with, to have clarity of vision and heart. But in order to get to those exalted, beautiful, non-messy things, we have to work through some serious chaos to get clear on what we want to see in our lives, and in the world.

“NOOO!” is my knee-jerk reaction to chaos. If feels unsafe and scary. But when there is chaos around us it gives us permission to stop trying to make sense of everything and just feel. When darkness descends, there is no way to move forward unless we feel our way, one touch at a time, from heartbeat to heartbeat. And it is through this feeling state that we can know our true desires. What do we want this new world to look like? What kind of life do we want to live?

Chaos connects us to our deepest, truest selves

When we are in the unknown, our usual landmarks are disrupted and we have nothing else to rely on but the ground of our beingness. Sounds True founder Tami Simon named “spending time in a place with no reference points” as one of her 5 Principles of Being True at Emerging Women Power Night. So it’s okay to feel off the map, out of your depth, messy. The key to resilience lies in having a close, intimate relationship with ourselves. This becomes our most trusted and constant reference point in times of uncertainty. From this place we can start to align with what feels true for us in the outer world.

Disorder brings people together

I think what I fear the most is an environment that does not allow for mess, that does not allow for exploration outside of the box. So let’s not do that thing that we women seem to do so often: strive for perfection. I vote for real conversations and fumbling with words over getting it right. I vote for epic failures in the name of change over risk avoidance and playing small. We need to organize and work together, we need to grow into our feminine humanity, and we need to let others to do the same – at their own pace and via their own path. So let’s give ourselves a wide berth, margin for error, and the benefit of the doubt that She knows what she is doing. After all, we are not doing this alone – we cannot do this alone – so what choice do we have but to come together with the best of intentions and drop the “shoulds?”

The Feminine thrives in chaos

“In chaos, there is fertility.” – Anaïs Nin

Life is messy when we are navigating uncharted waters, and yet somebody has to lead the way. Collectively, women are rising up to take their place as leaders in a world that is both thirsty for and resistant to this change. We are at the beginning of a new era in the women’s movement, and this time we are doing it with the cosmic feminine on our side.

Today’s world of disparaging views and conflict is the perfect environment for the feminine to rise, and She is rising like She has never risen before. I want to know what the world looks like, what business, politics, and an economy looks like, under a paradigm for society where the feminine is fully expressed. We know what the world looks like under a masculine paradigm (boy does that feel like it’s run it’s course) – and it’s going to take some dismantling to make room for new growth.

The patriarchy hates mess. It relies on order, logic, adherence. So in these times of seeming madness, I say let things break. Because the feminine will grow through the cracks.

“Chaos is what we’ve lost touch with. This is why it is given a bad name. It is feared by the dominant archetype of our world, which is Ego, which clenches because its existence is defined in terms of control.” – Terence McKenna

The strive for order seems to be the goal of the ego, but let’s make a pledge to surrender that ego, embrace the mess, and listen to our desires, trusting that they will lead us in our work to make the world a better place for all.

Chantal Pierrat Big Love,
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Chantal Pierrat | Founder, Emerging Women

Whose Money Is It Anyway?

Oh boy – we are talking money again, sisters! I can’t help it. Time and time again I am finding this topic to be the source of so much anxiety for women. Retirement, earning potential, glass ceilings, re-entering the workforce or leaving the J_O_B to become an entrepreneur. It all leads to the recurring bag-lady nightmare for me (am I the only one that has that?).

Regardless of our place in the journey, we seem to be in perpetual fear that there will never be enough, or that we will lose what we have, or worse, that we are fundamentally undeserving of anything above the bare minimum to survive.

In my case, my angst started when I left the snug comfort of my steady executive publishing job to start Emerging Women. I was traveling regularly to New York, LA, London, and Germany on an expense account. I had superfine outfits to support my super-groovy life. I bought a house in North Boulder (now known as NoBo – that should give you an idea) with my husband. I always had money for yoga, dance, and organic smoothies. I was set!

Then the goddess said “do your thing” and it all changed. I decided to leave the womb of a company I loved, an incredible mentor, and a decade of transformational personal and career growth to become an entrepreneur. What was I thinking?!?

Since then, I have wrung my hands, chewed my cheek, and even had to get a mouth guard to keep me from gnashing my teeth in the middle of the night. All from money anxiety. How was I going to support my family and this lifestyle to which I had become passionately accustomed? 

I consider myself a successful woman. I make things happen, I am creative, a visionary, and I love helping women rise. And I rode on this energy for the first year of Emerging Women, taking personal and professional risks that were worth taking. As I followed the natural growth of EW, there seemed to be more and more pressure, more risk, and less cash. I found myself pushing and driving to manage the cash constraints to the point of exhaustion.

Luckily, I’ve found women I trust to help me take more ownership over my finances. They guide me and encourage me to really dig into old patterns while developing healthy, concrete habits to both grow my business and stay rooted in my personal finances.

Amanda Steinberg, founder of DailyWorth and WorthFM, is one of those women. If you haven’t yet, tune in to her Emerging Women podcast Worth It to hear how to get ready for the “perfect storm of opportunity” coming up around women and money.


Another woman I trust, Barbara Stanny, is my rock when it comes to moving my money mindset from survival to stability to affluence. If you’re looking for a similar shift, her Emerging Women podcast Sacred Success: A Woman’s Guide to Authentic Power and Affluence is a must-hear.

Nancy Levin has also been so important by reminding me that the real key to creating financial freedom isn’t changing what we do, it’s changing our limiting beliefs about how we feel—and that requires more than just learning how to invest. Here’s an Emerging Women Power Practice Boost Your Self Worth to Grow Your Net Worth to start uncovering and removing limiting shadow beliefs about worth.

But then one day I was talking to Tosha Silver, my go-to for all things surrender and divine, and she floated this concept that it’s NOT really my money. What the what? Whose is it?!

Tosha’s core message of working with the unknowable forces in the universe, co-creating your life in connection or in relationship to something greater than yourself, of letting go and trusting that the mystery will flow in a positive way for you if you truly offer yourself up to it, applies 100% to the realm of money as well. And that’s perhaps the most powerful, if not the most challenging, realm in which we can let the practice play out. Whoa.

Check out Tosha Silver’s long-awaited 8 part money course It’s Not “Your” Money: Fully Living From Divine Abundance. It starts on March 22nd, so nab your tickets now and let’s do the work together on releasing the blocks to receiving.

The first 3 women’s views help me check the boxes and dot the i’s, both externally and internally. And knowing that money ultimately does not belong to me allows me to surrender and not worry if I’m just a financial hot mess. All 4 of these women have shared wisdom that is freeing me from white-knuckle saving and a manic number crunching, allowing for a softer interplay of competence, worth, and trust.

What’s your money story right now? The more we talk about this “taboo” subject, the more opportunity we’ll give ourselves to, as Amanda Steinberg so beautifully puts it, grow stronger roots and freeing wings around our finances.

Trailblazing Women and Radioactive Bikes: Happy #IWD

Bates was the President of the NAACP Arkansas branch and used her position as a public leader to guide what would be national known as the “Little Rock Nine”. The Little Rock Nine was a group of nine African American students that Bates helped enroll at Little Rock Central High School in the face of mobs, violence, and hatred.

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One of Bates’ greatest inspirations and supporters was her adoptive father, Orlee Smith. Before Smith passed he gave her some lasting advice:

“You’re filled with hatred. Hate can destroy you, Daisy. Don’t hate white people just because they’re white. If you hate, make it count for something. Hate the humiliations we are living under in the South. Hate the discrimination that eats away at the South. Hate the discrimination that eats away at the soul of every black man and woman. Hate the insults hurled at us by white scum—and then try to do something about it, or your hate won’t spell a thing.” – Orlee Smith

 

Marie Curie

Marie Curie was a Polish physicist and chemist who later became a naturalized-French citizen. She was the pioneering scientist on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win the Nobel Prize, and the first person, and only woman, to win it two times. She is also the only human to have won the Nobel prize in two different sciences. And if this wasn’t enough, she was also the first female professor at the University of Paris.

Despite being an academic badass in secondary school, she was denied access to the University of Warsaw solely because she was a woman. So instead, she adapted to be even more of a badass and continued her education at an informal, underground secret set of classes.

“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.” – Marie Curie

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Curie’s road through education wasn’t easy. She suffered through poverty, xenophobia, and criticism for being an atheist in France. She often survived solely off bread and tea in order to make rent. She went to Sorbonne in Paris where she changed her name from Maria to Marie in order to assimilate more into French culture and although her health suffered greatly from her living conditions, she still graduated first in her class.

During World War I, Curie developed what came to be called petites Curies (or “Little Curies”). These were mobile radiography machines designed to assist surgeons on the battlefield. Estimates show that her x-ray units treated over a million soldiers and later on she trained other women to use them as well.

“I was taught that the way of progress was neither swift nor easy.” – Marie Curie

Curie donated the profits of every award and scholarship she received to the community to further scientific discoveries. She gave tirelessly to the French field of science even though she was met with constant resistance and received little to no recognition.

I have two little girls in my life, soon to be young women. Just as I owe much of my relentless drive and my passion for justice to the women before me, I also owe the characteristics that define me to my sweet little loves CD and LD. Although they are “only” 10 and 12 years old, they are a source of constant motivation for me. Whether it is discussions about politics and women’s rights over NPR on the drive home from swim practice, chats in confidence about what it means to be a “woman,” or laughter over Snapchat filters, these two girls empower me.

They inspire me to fight for what is right because I want them to grow up in a world that is better than the one I grew up in. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Daisy Bates, and Marie Curie fought for me to have a voice in the courtroom and a right to attend any school I want. And so too will I fight for the these young girls to never be ashamed of what it means to be a woman, to dismantle patriarchy, and to raise up the voices of those who have not been heard.

Daisy Bates’ adoptive father warned her about being fueled by hatred. So I ask, “What fuels you to be bold and to fight for change?” Are you fueled by anger, by love, by optimism, by hope for fairness? There is a real place for anger (read Audre Lorde The Uses of Anger) just as there is a place for passion and love. My fuel is my passion for social justice AND my anger towards our patriarchal society.

When I run for office it is because I am filled with fervor, fury, AND hope. I will run in honor of the women before me and I will run as a model for the young girls who will run behind me. Today is International Women’s Day. It is a day of celebration, a day of recognition, and most of all it is a catalyst for the women here today and for the women yet to come.

Speaking of catalysts, have you saved your seat at the wildly inspirational Emerging Women Live? Join Elizabeth Gilbert, Tara Mohr, Dominique Christina, Sera Beak, Esther Perel and so many more. Register before March 31st for deep discounts:


Sera Beak: Igniting an Intimate Relationship with Your Soul

The list of powerhouse speakers at Emerging Women Live just keeps growing! This week we are thrilled to announce Sera Beak will be joining us in Denver, October 5-8th. We can’t wait to see what hot new truths she brings to this year’s event.

Sera is a Harvard-trained scholar of comparative world religions who spent years traveling the world studying spirituality with Sufi dervishes, Tibetan monks, Croatian mystics, shamans, and more. She’s given tender and wise keynotes (including In All Fears and Trembling Boldness) at past Emerging Women Live conferences. Here’s a tidbit:

“Our soul’s voice reveals our deepest wisdom and our deepest wounds, which is why unleashing our soul’s voice is often our deepest desire and our deepest fear. We ache to be self-expressed, to be authentic, to totally let ‘er rip and yet we are terrified of being that vulnerable, that raw, that real. So we edit, shape or even shut up our unique soul’s voice in order to be accepted, successful, and even loved. But deep down in our bellies, where our power burns the brightest, we know we cannot be of service, we cannot be free, we cannot truly come alive if we aren’t sharing the truth of who we are.” – Sera Beak

Amen, sister! And have you heard her Emerging Women podcast Red Hot and Holy? She vulnerably speaks to the double-edged sword many of us have faced while trying to make an impact:

“I know for me, in my own experience, it’s been through delivering my truth to the world that I have most often lost my soul. That’s the kind of crazy paradox, that it’s been through trying to actually serve other women and serve the diving feminine in this modern day that… I thought I’d been in contact with my soul, but the reality was there was actually some part of my own spiritualized ego kicking in, or there were other aspects of me that were really more at play than my own soul.” – Sera Beak

Want to go deeper with this stellar sister before the conference? Join Sera Beak LIVE on May 3rd for the Emerging Women Power Boost Soul Fire: Ignite an Intimate Relationship with Your Soul.


Sera will lead us in creating a more intimate and expressive relationship with the universe, in trusting our unique paths, in becoming our own spiritual authorities, and in creating some delicious, divine mischief along the way. A community Q&A/spot-coaching sesh with Sera will follow. Save your virtual seat now and receive a 30 day free trial to the Emerging Women Leadership Platform.

See you (and your beautiful soul) there!

Esther Perel: Gender, Fluidity, and Desire

More exciting news, Feministas! We are thrilled to tell you that Esther Perel will be joining us at Emerging Women Live 2017 October 5-8th in Denver, CO. Why are we so pumped?

We find that stepping into your sexual power can be crucial to stepping into your full power as a feminine leader. What does one have to do with the other? If we’re disconnected from the flame that’s inside of us, nothing’s gonna happen. People will feel it (or feel something missing) and we’ll be exhausted from running on fumes.

Esther Perel is a penetrating observer of social and cultural patterns shaping our relationships: with our partners, with our desires, with our sexuality, with ourselves. At Emerging Women Live 2015, she invited us to imagine we were gathered for happy hour, favorite cocktails or mocktails in hand, and she asked us what she calls the 5 essential questions:

Why does good sex fade even with couples who continue to love each other? Why does intimacy not guarantee good sex? Why does sex make babies while parenting kills sex drive? Can we want what we already have? And why is the exotic so erotic?

We were HOOKED.

Here’s a few snippets from our Emerging Women podcast “The Fluidity of Desire” to help you get a feel for Esther’s brilliant perspective on women and desire in the modern age. Listen to the full podcast to hear more (plus get the benefits of hearing Esther talk about desire in a French accent).


Enjoy!

Excerpts from The Fluidity of Desire with Esther Perel & Chantal Pierrat

EP: Many women in this age of perfection have to learn to just say, “It’s enough for today. And now me,” rather than, “Wait!” She’s exasperated or frustrated or something beyond, and then she doesn’t know how to experience desire because then she experiences deserving. Now she’s in the realm of resentment and now she doesn’t just say “I want,” she says, “I deserve,” right?

“Deserving” is wanting a prize. Some people don’t feel that they are allowed to want so they have to be at the end of their ropes to finally say, “Now me!” But then they say it with such violence and with such an aggression that they can shake up the whole house.

That’s what happens many times in relationships. She doesn’t say it earlier when it’s just, “Hey, I feel like it, I want to,” she screams it: “I deserve! I’ve had it! I’ve had enough!” And then she blames him or her or whoever else is around her for not being allowed to say this sooner.

In fact, she just doesn’t feel like she can say it sooner because she first needs to be perfect, have it all done, and then she feels that desire is a reward rather than that desire is basically part of her human right.

CP:When we’re living in that loop of perfection, then that criticism can’t help but spill out. Because we’re putting so much on ourselves, we bring those standards to our relationships, and then it’s nothing but “lack” and “criticism” and “not good enough” on both the inside and the outside.

EP: It’s really kind of an epidemic at this point, yes? You’ve got the most confident, successful, powerful group of women in history walking around constantly with an inner voice of “flawed, and critical, and not enough.” It’s just tragic. And, I should add, resentful, because, “How can you sit down when there is so much to do? Don’t you see?” But why don’t you just sit down? Does it really matter? Is that going to be written on your epitaph? “You cleaned when…” or “You organized and labeled when…” or whatever? Or, “You deprived yourself nicely”?

It’s a very interesting thing to help women allow themselves the permission to experience pleasure, which is really where desire resides. To experience freedom, to experience autonomy, and all of that, we end up instantly feeling selfish and guilty.

CP: Well, what’s interesting about what you’re saying is that because we’re kind of hardwired to touch into our desire through the other, it’s hard to get in touch with that. It’s like a muscle we have to flex to find the source of our desire within.

EP: We rekindle desire by rekindling, first of all, the permission to think about oneself and not in the productive, instrumental way. The erotic is totally unproductive. You accomplish nothing. It’s just a state of aliveness and of vitality and of sensuality.

We are sexual beings, and sexuality isn’t how often she has sex and how long the sex lasts and how many orgasms she has. It’s basically a connection with her erotic self. It’s a much broader definition of sexuality, one where we talk about reaching desire, and that’s the progression that she needs to go through.

CP: I think a lot of what holds us back as women is this lack of ownership on that individual level of our own desire, and also lack of self-acceptance. We’re working on freeing ourselves from this perfection and actually kind of falling in love with ourselves so that we are a turn on, not just in terms of our relationships, but that we can have that juice and charisma and energy, frankly, to lead in a way that’s empowerful and impactful.

EP: But then we will need to learn that our appreciation of ourselves doesn’t become perfect, but more like how Brené Brown talks about it, because we welcome the gift of imperfection. If we actually are more compassionate with ourselves, we accept our imperfections, we’re not agreeing to sell everything, and we seem like ourselves and can even get a good laugh at it, then we will be in a much better place.

CP: What do you recommend for women, especially, to grab onto in this era of… “chaos” is kind of a strong word… but an era of new? Everything’s  being re-created and we’re rethinking everything. What’s something solid that we can hold onto that we can fall back on and know that it’s always going to be there?

EP: People. People. Community. That’s the only thing we have in this world. We don’t have the traditional pillars, we don’t have the models. What we have is conversation, which is really what your gathering is about, creating real-life, embodied experiences where people come together and discuss all the dilemmas of love and living.

And in those conversations, bit by bit, we dismantle and we challenge the old hierarchy. It’s time for women to be angry without being considered bitches or aggressive or masculine. It’s time for them to not constantly worry about being liked. It’s time that they think that they can ask for the same amount that the men are asking. It’s time that she feel that she can be seductive without thinking that she’s a slut. It’s time that she can integrate femininity and power as part of her success and her activation story.

It’s all these divisions, basically, dismantling the patriarchy, if you want to put a name on it. But what will replace it isn’t a matriarchy and it’s not genderless, it’s gender-fluid. It’s different. We are just living way too long these days to just abide by one model. And they understand it in the professional world, in the business world, the tech world. Everything is about multiplicity. When it comes to gender identity and relationships, we are left with very little monolithic, narrowly thought out models that don’t serve us anymore. They just don’t serve us.

So what happens is that people get blamed for not succeeding, right? You get blamed because you’re divorced, but nobody ever questions if the model of marriage is so sound. Why do we think marriage is a sound arrangement? And the people who don’t succeed, they’re the failures? And [it’s the same] for everything else. If you can succeed with children, it’s not because there’s a lack of childcare and a lack of good schools and a lack of this and that. It’s because you [know how] to juggle your schedule.

And so we are privatizing social problems and making the individual responsible for it. And I think that if women come together, the biggest challenge is not to think that it’s just a matter of each woman on their own, coming up with societal solutions to society’s problems. They need to be connective solutions for connective problems, in which she is a piece of the voice, that she’s not responsible on her own to deal with the lack of support that the system should provide her. To me, that is going to be the biggest shift that women can offer these days. It’s actually a challenge to the excesses of individualism.

I can’t even tell you, just from this week, with the amount of women I met, how often my eyes fill up. I’m thinking, “You carry a load, don’t you, and you actually think you should. And you still think that you’re not carrying it well enough.” I’m thinking, “My God, can we stop personalizing difficulties that are systemic, as if they’re your personal challenge?” It’s not like that, it’s really bigger than you, and we have to remember that it’s bigger than you, and then all come together and address it and make those changes.

And then our lives will be better and so will the lives of the people around us, because we will be less upset. And rather than thinking we’re upset because we can’t do it all, we will be upset because we are thinking that we should do it all.

CP: Amen, sister. May it be so!

Early Bird discounts expire at the end of the month, so save your seat now!

How Mindfulness Brought Me to Feminine Leadership

To say I was disconnected from the feminine when I was VP of Sales in the medical devices industry would be an understatement. I wasn’t just disconnected – I often actively pushed my feminine side away and even belittled the feminine in an attempt to prove to a room full of guys that I was tough and capable. Ugh! But I thought I had to to succeed and survive.

It wasn’t until I was passed over for promotion that I realized that no amount of strained fake laughter at sexist jokes would turn me into a middle aged white male. I was me, and I wanted to find the place where “me” could be appreciated for myself, not for what kind of mask I could project and maintain.

Luckily, my next job was at Sounds True, the wonderful multimedia publishing company with the mission of disseminating spiritual wisdom. I was able to immerse myself in mindfulness and mindful practices. Not just meditation, but conscious communication and receptive listening. Mind. Blown. 

Mindfulness has brought me to this journey of the feminine – brought me to my purpose. In the tech world, pushing your own agenda and drive above all else was the norm. The idea of making space for receptivity and real connection is deemed frivolous. As a result I see a lot of women, like me, allow the feminine to get pushed to the back burner. Like, waaaayyyy back. Totally off the stove.

My purpose? I want to help bring the feminine back to the front burner and celebrate what we have simmering there!

The good news about mindfulness is that you don’t have to carve out 2 hours of space for meditation. Just being conscious as we go through our day, conscious of our own reactions and receptive to that input, we will become more connected to our feminine sides, and can be guided towards a more balanced and authentic version of our true selves.

This is why I feel honored to speak at the first-ever Mindful Leadership Online Training Conference. It’s a rare chance for me to talk about this important topic alongside more than 40 top mindful leaders, entrepreneurs, thought leaders and teachers, including Tara Brach (total shero).

If you feel like you could use an infusion of mindfulness in your feminine leadership journey, this is the place to get it. See the schedule and sign up for free here:

My presentation is called How to Manifest The Power of Connected Leadership: Exploring A Feminine Paradigm for Business, and will take place on Day 7 (March 7th) of this 10 day event.

After you register you’ll gain access to over 35 video sessions from many of the world’s foremost experts on mindful leadership, plus you’ll receive several bonus gifts, including a Guided Intention Meditation from me! Additionally, every session ends with a specific mindfulness meditation or practice that you can begin to use immediately in your own life and organization.

I hope you will join me for this powerful new event. Here’s to the power of mindfulness to help us harness the power of the feminine and lead from the truth of who we are!

Big Love,
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Chantal Pierrat | Founder, Emerging Women

I’m Going to Mess Up… and That’s Not Going to Stop Me

In the days following the Women’s March I have encountered blogs and literature expressing ways in which people have felt marginalized by the mission of the Women’s March. One image that struck me was one of a black woman, Angela Peoples, holding a sign that read, “Don’t forget White women voted for Trump.” Standing in the background of the photo are three white women in pink “pussy-hats” on their phones, smiling and posing for a selfie.

This photo is an explicit visual representation of a deep racial divide that is still very much present between women of color and white women, a distinction made unmistakably clear by the 2016 presidential election. More than 53% of white women voted for Donald, while approximately 94% of black women and 69% of latina women voted for Hillary.

There are cracks in America’s feminist movement. We are not as united as we believe.

My post’s purpose is not to examine why this drastic difference in voting occurred. Rather, I am here to address my own unanswered question:

Where is my place in all of this? Where is a white, cisgender, straight, middle class, able-bodied, privileged woman most helpful, or more importantly, least helpful or possibly even damaging for a movement whose main purpose is to achieve inclusive equality for all?

When I am uneducated about a topic, or fearful of looking ignorant when opening my mouth, my default is to read. This is a great tool. Yet it can also open the door for passivity and cowardice. By only reading, I give myself permission, in a way, to gain knowledge while remaining sheltered. I can read all about intersectional feminism, how to be a better activist, how to be a better ally, but if I don’t get out there and talk to someone about it, if I don’t get out there and do something about it, then what the heck is the point?

Here’s the truth about all of this: I am afraid. I am afraid of saying the wrong thing. I am afraid of insulting someone or coming off as callous. I am afraid of being called a racist. But guess what? My reluctance to take a stance and engage in the discourse surrounding the intersection of gender and race only perpetuates racism, my inherent racism as a white person (and if you’re white, yours as well). I benefit from systemic racism. I perpetuate racism in ways that are invisible to me. I allow it to continue living for the simple fact that I have the luxury of never having to think about it.

My hesitation to enter the conversation doesn’t keep me “safe” from being called ignorant or hurting someone’s feelings. No, it keeps me docile and reinforces my white privilege to not have to participate.

If you haven’t yet, I strongly encourage you to read Saroful’s How to survive in intersectional feminist spaces 101. The very first aspect the author addresses is how we will all be corrected at some point or another, and that is OK! And when you mess up, which we all will, guess what you say? “I’m sorry. I didn’t know. I’ll do better next time.” Wow. That was a little more straightforward than I thought it was going to be.

No one can know everything and no one expects me to know everything, but if I don’t ever mess up because I never open my mouth, then I will never learn. Saroful goes on to discuss a seriously helpful list of ways to be a good listener, an effective learner, and an impactful activist.

One of the key points I found helpful was:

If it’s not about you, don’t make it about you. If it is about you, do better.” – Saroful

In my attempt to be an activist, I will eventually be confronted with a blanket statement about racism such as white women are racist. What I am coming to realize is that all white humans are inherently racist (see above), whether or not we are willing to admit it. But if we insist that these statements don’t apply to us personally (Saroful calls this “not me! I’m a good person!”) we hijack the conversation and erase the opportunity to discuss the real issue at hand. And by playing the part of the “innocent bystander,” educating myself, but not engaging with the issue, I am a detriment to progress. I am not speaking truth to power.

I have spent the last week reading and I decided it is time to move. I need to leave my safe place, the one inside my little head. In Saroful’s follow-up article, So you think you know a thing: feministing 201, she notes that in almost every circumstance, experience will outweigh education. Anything that has ever been written has invariably been lived by someone else. In other words, educate yourself with the voices of people from the relevant community. Widen your lens of perception.

The moral of my story is that I have to engage, to listen, to learn, to know I’ll mess up and to always realize that I have the capacity to do better; we all have that potential. I will mess up, I will fall down, and I will be hurt. The beauty of it is: I will grow. It is not a marginalized group’s responsibility to come to me asking for help, to “teach” me what I should know, or to coddle my feelings of white fragility. It is MY job to change and to work hard as hell in my discomfort. It is my job to figure out by asking how I can be a better ally, not by stating that I am one. It is the voices of marginalized communities that must be at the center of the conversation, not mine, or any white person’s for that matter. It is their voices that need to be lifted and magnified – again, not mine.

I now have somewhere to start. It is my job to ask where I can be helpful, not tell. It is my job to support the uplifting of POC’s voices, not my own voice. I feel optimistic about our potential, collectively, to be the change we wish to see in the world. And as Gandhi once said, this is a damn good place to start.

Note from Emerging Women: Kristen Neff’s Self-Compassion Break is a tremendously helpful practice when we’re doing tough inner-work that is likely to bring up uncomfortable feelings. We made a handy pdf for you – take a look:


Brené Brown, Kris Carr, and Jensine Larsen: Keeping Our Feminine Fires Stoked

When we ask our Emerging Women Live speakers what the number one thing women can do to stoke the flames of feminine leadership, the answers are distinct in perspective, but very similar at the core.

The real Power-with-a-capital-P seems to boil down to one thing: deep connection with like-minded women in a safe space. It supercharges everyone’s efforts to lead in a way that feels uniquely nourishing. Don’t you agree?

Brené Brown – author of Rising Strong and Daring Greatly

Kris Carr – author of Crazy Sexy Cancer and Crazy Sexy Diet

Jensine Larsen – founder of World Pulse 

We need to support each other. We need to speak our visions so we can be supported.

Power Circles are an ideal way to both share your vision and get the support you need to move your vision toward your reality.

The Circles are an opportunity to connect regularly with women who inspire you, to get clear about what you really want, and to be in a sisterhood that believes in your capacity for leadership and impact.

The more we meet, the stronger we get, and the further our waves of emboldenment and compassion will spread into the world. And that’s a world worth creating!

Learn more about the transformative power of Power Circles HERE.


Re-Emerging My Activist Self: The Women’s March 2017

I was a Women’s Studies major in College – and in my junior year I marched in Washington DC at The March for Women’s Lives organized by the National Organization for Women.

It was amazing to see over 500,000 women, men, and children marching in solidarity for the human rights and reproductive rights of women. It energized and inspired me, and shaped the work I do to this day.

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(Photo by Barbara Alper/Getty Images)

I was absolutely an activist in my 20’s. But my 30’s? Not so much. My focus turned toward my personal future as I reached toward the female American dream: a partner I loved, 1.5 kids, a house in a good neighborhood, and a career that was meaningful and earned a decent salary.

Four years ago I started saying to myself, “I used to be such an activist… what happened?” I think I eschewed the word because I linked it to anger. But in retrospect, I don’t remember feeling angry – I felt alive and vital. As Brené Brown puts it, I felt like I was in the arena.

Now in my 40’s (ok, late 40’s, but who’s counting?) I realize that no matter how much of the American dream I have, it is a short-lived fulfillment. How can I feel satisfied while so much of humanity struggles to get their most basic needs met, while our ecosystem deteriorates under our negligence and greed, and while women and girls around the world continue to be the target of heinous crimes?

The same goes for personal growth. I have spent the last two decades finding myself, healing old wounds, using awareness practices to out-create deep-seeded psychological patterning. I am a better person for it – thank GODDESS for therapy – and I feel that I could spend my life working on my own personal evolution (is there ever an end to it?).

But I want to go beyond me. It is my wish that every human being has the luxury of working towards their fullest self-expression in this lifetime, just like I do.

So I can’t stop at my life. I need to fight for the lives of everyone around me. I need to speak up for those whose voices cannot be heard. I need to use the inner and outer power that I have accumulated through my personal work to make the way for a more sustainable future for all.

And so this weekend, I will march again. And I do not march alone. I’ll be joining thousands of Coloradans at the Women’s March on Denver to show my commitment to social justice, human rights, and equality. If you’re in Denver, I hope you’ll join the Emerging Women group – we’re meeting at the downtown Sheraton at 8:30am.

This sister march to the Women’s March on Washington is our opportunity to send a message: we are connected, powerful, and will fiercely advocate for marginalized groups to ensure a compassionate and just world.

Not in the Denver area? Check and see if a city near you is hosting a march (at the time of this post there are over 600 scheduled). We will show up all over the nation, and our numbers will speak for themselves. We are half the population, and we will not be ignored. I can’t wait to connect with you, and re-connect with my young activist self. Now is the time, sisters. Let’s show ’em our strength!

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PS – In true Emerging Women Live fashion, we will finish the day with embodied feminine power, aka dance party, at the Colorado Blue Ball – A Ball for All. I hope you are able to do the same with the soul sisters who keep your fire bright!

Power Practice #17: Boost Your Self Worth to Grow Your Net Worth

Is money a constant source of anxiety for you? Nancy Levin, Emerging Women Live speaker and author of Worthy: Boost Your Self Worth to Grow Your Net Worth, has a practice that should help.

The real key to creating financial freedom isn’t changing what we do, it’s changing our limiting beliefs about how we feel—and that requires more than just learning how to invest. Ready to give it a shot? Discover which beliefs may be inhibiting your sense of self worth, and unlock the potential to grow your net worth in the process.

Play Power Practice #17 – Boost Your Self Worth to Grow Your Net Worth:

Nancy LevinNancy Levin is the bestselling author of Worthy: Boost Your Self-Worth to Grow Your Net Worth, Jump … And Your Life Will Appear and Writing For My Life, She’s a Master Integrative Life Coach and the creator of the Jump Coaching and Worthy Coaching Programs, working with clients – privately and in groups – to live in alignment with their own truth and desires.

She was the Event Director at Hay House for 12 years and hosts her own weekly call-in radio show Jump Start Your Life on Hay House Radio, Thursdays at 8am PT/11am ET.

She is also Contributing Editor of Kristen Noel’s Best Self Magazine and one of the hosts of the Hay House World Summit each year since its inception.

Nancy received her Masters in Creative Writing and Poetics from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado and she continues to live in the Rocky Mountains.

Like what you hear? Try Bari Tessler’s Power Practice #06: Crafting a Money Practice to go deeper into your money mojo:


Why not get in on four full days of power practices, movement, inspiration and collaboration at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO? Join us!

3 Must-Haves for Women Entrepreneurs

The face of entrepreneurship is changing in the United States. More and more women are taking the leap from employee to owner, and the number of women-owned businesses grew 74 percent between 1997 and 2015 – that’s one-and-a-half times the national average, according to the 2015 State of Women-Owned Business Report, commissioned by American Express OPEN.

During October, which is National Women’s Small Business Month, the small business sector was in the spotlight, leading many inspirational entrepreneurs and communities to ask, “What can we do to help you succeed?”

Interestingly enough, the answer hasn’t changed much over the years. Women, like the majority of small and medium business (SMB) owners, need a mix of three ingredients for success: community, capital and growth.

Community

When it comes to community, women have long been the gatekeepers. The same skills that organized neighborhood events and activities and led to the founding of women’s’ organizations in the 1970s continue to be crucial to the future of entrepreneurship.

Capital

No conversation about women entrepreneurs is complete without discussing the challenges and key developments pertaining to issues like women’s access to credit and cultural expectations that have, to a certain extent, limited many women’s ability to pursue entrepreneurial ventures. These uphill battles, which could, even today, become deterrents, have instead fostered new strengths and determination that are integral to business success.

Growth

In business, many would say if you’re not growing, you’re failing. When growth is the name of the game, it’s imperative to constantly seek new ways to succeed.  Technology is now integral to enabling SMBs to grow; ever more accessible and sophisticated technology continues to democratize the means to leverage solutions once relegated to large companies. More than ever, technology now delivers a level of flexibility and mobility that enables every female entrepreneur to define her own workstyle and lifestyle.

Microsoft’s Windows10 Pro operating system and Windows10 Pro devices play a prominent role in the ongoing transformation of small businesses to do great things. We’d like to offer you a free copy of the Windows 10 for Business Onboarding Kit (click here) to learn more about how Windows 10 Pro and new devices can help empower your business.

Want to Dial Into Desire? Love the Longing.

Have you ever wanted something so very bad your whole body ached? I am talking about a desire so profound that it wraps itself around your heart… and squeezes. As we long for the fulfillment of that desire, a feeling of separateness from the desired thing often begins to form. And if that separateness is allowed to solidify, it can become literally heartbreaking.

I’ve felt that gulf between desire and outcome a lot lately. I’ve watched my country make decisions I don’t understand, the course I set for my business keeps taking unexpected turns, and several new relationships in my life are not panning out the way I had hoped. At times like these sometimes I just want… well, not to want.

In Buddhism, the Four Noble Truths are aimed at freeing ourselves from our desires in order to end our suffering. This makes so much sense – if I don’t want, I cannot be without, and I can’t be disappointed. Freedom! Oh to be free of wanting – how civilized that must be. To walk about the world with such contentment, such satisfaction with what is and watch all the shiny objects pass us by without the grip of desire!

Still, I can’t help but think that desire must have some function besides to torture us. Surely an energy so strong, and at times all-consuming must have a greater purpose?

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Do Our Desires Evolve Us?

At a very basic level our desire for food, water, safety, and procreation keeps humanity going. Isn’t the purpose of all of life is to expand, evolve, to grow and spread? Maybe there’s a case to be made that what we desire will likely lead to our growth and expansion.

Could it be that we naturally long for things that will help us evolve? Having longed for a few “bad boys” and risky experiences in my day, I question this. But then again, the personal expansion that came from those experiences are undeniable. The more I lean into this, the more I am convinced: desire, regardless of the object or the outcome, can lead to transformation.

Do Our Desires Reveal Our Purpose?

Maybe we don’t have desires, we are our desires. In that case, if we run from our desires, we run from ourselves. I believe Spirit can talk to us through our desires, helping to reveal our true purpose. Do you?

A desire is anything but frivolous. It is the interface between you and that which is greater than you. No desire is meaningless or inconsequential. If it pulls you, even a little bit, it will take everyone higher. Desire is where the Divine lives, inside the inspiration of your desire. Every desire is of profound importance with huge consequences, and deserves your attention.

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Do Our Desires Create Connection?

As an experiment, I started leaning into my desires. Not the images or visions I have of the end result, but the physical and energetic pull on my heart, the heat on my skin, the stretching of my soul as I reach. The desiring itself. When I stay there, I don’t feel pain or separation, but an increased intimacy with… me.

Buddhist teacher Tara Brach has said, “Longing, felt fully, carries us to belonging.” My desires shifted from a source of pain and separation to guideposts for deeper connection – to self, to others, to God/the universe/the force. The movement toward something reminds me that I am not alone. As I reach my hands out for what I want, I know that somewhere another is doing the same, and perhaps our fingertips shall meet. I desire for Emerging Women to be globally impactful – yes. But what I really want is to feel connected to women everywhere who are risking everything to live authentically for the good of the world. And in the simple act of desire, I already feel that powerful connection.

Do Our Desires Shape the World Around Us?

As women, we have a history of suppressing our desires. We may not speak up, we may not ask for what we need, we may avoid making waves and stay safe in the caretaking of others while neglecting our own wants. At Emerging Women Live 2015, Esther Perel said, “As women we need to own our wanting.” Damn straight, sisters. How can we expect the world to work in our favor if we don’t allow ourselves to want? What good is dreaming if we don’t infuse our visions with the catalytic fire of desire? To dare to want in the face of possible disappointment, shame, or guilt – now that is courage.

Thomas Merton said, “Your life is shaped by the end you live for. You are made in the image of what you desire.” The world we live in is a result of the desire of men. It is paramount that we women step more fully into that which we desire – own it, live it, breath it – if we are going to create change in the world.

Here’s what I desire: I desire a world that celebrates feminine leadership and exalts it to create healthy systems that are inclusive, compassionate, and fair. I desire meaningful relationships that are both intimate and impactful in the world. I desire increased connection to fast track a global consciousness that puts life at the center of everything we do.  What do you desire? I want to know. Let’s pool our desires and make it happen, sisters.


What it Means to be a Wild and Free Woman

“All good things are wild and free.” – Henry David Thoreau

Healthy women have a playful spirit, are powerfully devoted to those they love, possess immense strength of character, and draw on a rich heritage of instinctual and intellectual wisdom handed down by generations of women before them. They are wild and free in the truest sense: unapologetically and entirely who they are at their deepest, most authentic core.

When we are not free, we are held back, closed off, and we feel overwhelmingly stuck. Our voice is silenced — by the outside world or, more often, by ourselves. We live in the black and white margins of life, unable to feel safe in the gray areas.

To be wild and free means to live from a place of your inherent worth and value. It means owning your imperfections as much as your strengths as worthy and valuable parts of yourself.

Here are some things that wild and free women have in common:

1. She is constantly in a state of transition. 

In order for us to evolve, to move forward, to live our best lives, we must accept that women are designed by nature to be cyclical beings.

Our hormonal cycles are cyclical. So are the ocean’s tides. They both reflect the cycles of the moon. We have cycles of seasons in nature, cultural holidays and traditions that are celebrated and observed in cycles as well.

As women, our bodies and minds are designed to create. We are designed with the ability to create new life. More than that, we are designed to express ourselves creatively, to value the journey of creation as much as or even more than the final product.

Conversely, women who are wild and free also know when something they have created has run its course and must now end. This can be a project, a relationship, or even a set of values that no longer work for them. Wild and free women don’t hang onto things because they are afraid of what will happen if they let go.  

They trust the cycles of life that dictate that new beginnings are impossible without endings and endings are the foundation upon which new beginnings are brought forth.

2. She doesn’t engage in relationships that don’t work or are meaningless to her. 

They are devoted to their partners, their children, and their tribe, but they know that their relationship with themselves, specifically with their intuition, is paramount above all.

Without a relationship with intuition, we become lost, susceptible to predatory influences, and disconnected from ourselves and those around us.

Our intuition may show up as a still, small voice inside us, a gut feeling, or a sense of knowing or guidance. If we listen, it tells us how to best show up in the relationships we are in. When those relationships are no longer serving our best interests, our instinct tells us when and how to step away.

Relationships can be our greatest source of growth or they can be our greatest cages. Women who are wild and free know that the choice is always theirs.

3. She honors who and what she is.

Women who are wild and free know that their worth comes from who they are, not what they do. She creates because creating is an expression of her authentic self, not because she is looking for the love or approval of others.

She is conscious of her strengths and weaknesses and uses this knowledge to her advantage. She is comfortable with the concept of “good enough.” She values her own dignity and sovereignty above all else because she knows they are what keep her connected and autonomous.  

While she doesn’t strive for perfection, she is always looking to grow herself: her knowledge, her abilities, her talents, her strength and vitality. She knows that growth involves work, and often also involves fear, and she is willing to be brave and flexible to reach her goals.

Being wild and free is the birthright of all women. When we are led by our intuition, we will always be on the right path to freedom.

5 Reasons We Want You to Take the Entrepreneurial Plunge

Some women decide to start a business because they have an innovative product idea that fills a gap in the market or a service they can offer that is in high demand. We love it when women choose the entrepreneurial path because we know the power of feminine business leadership to change the world at large.

Regardless of the motivation, if you’re a woman considering entrepreneurship, here are a few reasons to get excited about taking the proverbial plunge:

Determination

Women are likely to be well-armed when it comes to the determination necessary to succeed at starting a business. Rutgers University includes determination in a list of necessary traits in prospective and burgeoning entrepreneurs, along with perseverance, curiosity, innovation, and fearlessness. They offer the example of Airbnb, which for many months apparently only made about $200 a week; the founders are now estimated to be worth over a billion dollars each.

Causes

There is a great deal of interest and momentum behind what’s known as “cause marketing,” at the moment. Forbes cites Global Women’s Entrepreneurship Research in noting that “Women are 1.17 times more likely than men to create social ventures rather than only economic ventures, and 1.23 times more likely to pursue environmental ventures than economic-focused ventures.” Considering the current popularity of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and sustainability issues, women would be well-advised to pursue a business putting environmental conservation, energy efficiency, or social justice causes front and center.

There is now the existence of Certified B Corporations, certified by B Lab—who define B corporations as “for profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.” A new interest in the triple bottom line of “profit-people-planet” is making B Corps especially appealing to a younger generation interested in supporting causes that value sustainability and economic equity. The new prominence of B corps should be especially motivating to women interested in starting forward-thinking businesses concerned with contributing to the social good.

Support

There are better support networks in place in 2016 than ever before. SAP mentions a few noteworthy organizations like the National Association of Women Business Owners, Entrepreneurial Winning Women, and Aspect Ventures as examples of organizations or companies interested in fostering and supporting female-run companies. There are even more resources accessible online that offer a number of tools, words of advice, and support services to women looking to start their own business. And of course, Emerging Women and Emerging Women Live offer stellar opportunities to get inspired and connect with like-minded entrepreneurs and investors.

Investment

It doesn’t cost as much money as you might think, at first. In fact, according to Intuit, “The majority (64%) of small business owners start with less than $10,000.”  That’s great news to those of us on a budget—which, let’s face it, is most of us. One way to make the process more painful is to start your business on the side, rather than quitting your job and hoping for the best. That way, you have a bit more breathing room to settle in and figure out which aspects of the business need adjustment or revision before full-launch. Entrepreneur offers a list of affordable business ideas to get you started, in case you’re at a loss for reliable options that are also on the frugal side.

However, if you are willing to shoot for more capital with which to start your business—especially if your business happens to be tech-based—Mackenzie Burnett put together a list of female angel and early-stage investors in tech. It helps immensely to tap into female-run investment firms, since for whatever reason many male investors are still biased against female entrepreneurs. Look into Broadway Angels, whose founder, Sonja Perkins, was recently interviewed by Fortune.

Independence

The last and perhaps most significant reason to start your own business is because of more independence and greater money-making potential. Many women want to start a family or would simply prefer to be their own boss than be forced to put up with traditional male-dominated hierarchies in a more traditional office setting. There is a great deal of marketing and business-based interaction that can take place online, now, as well—as opposed to in person or with the luxury of a brick-and-mortar office location. The traditional overhead costs simply don’t exist, when you work remotely or from a home-based office. And being in charge of your own business means you get to set your own rates or prices, which can feel empowering!

Make no mistake: setting out on your own can feel intimidating, and it probably won’t be easy. Set goals for yourself, and don’t be afraid to share your idea with the world. You have most of the resources you need, and you can find the ones you’re missing with the support and collaboration of your fellow females.

Forming a concrete image of your future entrepreurial success can keep you motivated when the going gets tough. Try this guided visualization from Right-Brain Business Plan author Jennifer Lee to connect with your future success:


3 Mobilizing Tips for Movement Makers

How many of you think the world can be a better place? How many of you have an idea about how to do that but have not implemented it? Wokie Nwabueze asked these questions to kick off October’s Emerging Women Live panel Movement Makers: Amplifying Vision, Voice and Influence to Change the World, and was answered by a room full of raised hands.

When we live with our ears to the ground, Wokie said, we get ideas that would absolutely improve quality of life for a group, a community, the planet. But we get afraid of that idea, thinking “Who am I to start a movement?”

We at Emerging Women have a favorite quote, from Move The Crowd founder Rha Goddess: “We are moving out of the age of the celebrity and into the age of the citizen.” That means we don’t have to wait for Angelina Jolie to start a movement. We can do it ourselves. We must – now more than ever.

To dig into the how, Wokie interviewed Joan Blades, founder of MoveOn.org and MomsRising.org, and Vicki Saunders, founder of SheEO and #radicalgenerosity. What did we learn?

1. Put it out there.

In 1998, Joan Blades sent a one sentence political petition to less than 100 friends, and it went viral. Within days the petition had hundreds of thousands of signatures. For the first time in history, an online petition broke into and helped transform the national conversation. Joan realized that online organizing had the potential to disrupt and fundamentally alter the course of our democracy. The signers of Joan’s petition became MoveOn’s first members, and a powerful movement of millions was born.

Vicki Saunders believes in socializing ideas. At a networking event, she’ll say, “I have this super crazy idea. Imagine this. Would you do it?” When she applied this tactic to SheEO, she realized it resonated in a big way. Though she had been running from the idea for 20 years, she couldn’t ignore the response she got when she put it out there. In 2013, she launced the website and quickly raised $500,000 to invest in women-led businesses.

2. No more guru.

Echoing Rha Goddess, Vicki pointed out that we’re living in a post-hero world. “It’s going to take all of us to change this world,” she said, “so don’t follow a guru. Follow the energy. If there’s something resonant in your idea, it becomes an uncontollable force. Don’t try to control it. Let it go, and that’s when you’ll really see it take off.” Vicki allows SheEO Activators to invest directly in businesses they feel passionate about. By giving women the power to invest in ideas they personally believe in, SheEO emboldens everyone involved – no guru necessary.

Joan embodied the no-guru rule by cultivating an agile team with outstanding ability to listen to and serve MoveOn’s membership. “They don’t need me – they’re incredible,” Joan said. She surrounded herself with good people she loved and respected, and who were aligned with a shared purpose. That gave the movement great collective power to grow and prosper, in service to the community and not just the leadership. She now serves on the MoveOn’s Board of Directors, and is free to found new movements like the much needed MomsRising and the especially timely Living Room Conversations.

3. Start with relationship.

“Design an experience for people to be in relationship together,” said Vicki. In SheEO’s model, women fall in love with the kinds of things they want to put their capital towards as a kind of gateway for falling in love with investing itself. Without that relationship, SheEO wouldn’t have the magic that makes it work.

“People are ready to pay for what they value,” Joan said. The key is deep listening to what the people want, and the ability to serve and facilitiate those desires. “We’d just say, ‘Do you want to do this?’ And they’d say yes and we’d have the money to do it!” When you allow people to choose what they’re passionate about and how they want to be involved, they will happily supply the resources you need to take action.

A final thought from Wokie to sum it all up? “You allowed the idea to be surrendered to community,” igniting the alchemy that transforms good ideas into massive movements. “We don’t have to take a hero’s journey. We can take a heroine’s journey and do it with community.”

Are you a Movement Maker? We’d love to hear about your expereince in the comments. And if you want to make deep connections with other women ready to make waves in the world, join us at Emerging Women Live 2017 in Denver, CO.


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Power Practice #16: Stepping Up and Speaking Out

There’s one question Nan Crawford hears a lot: How do I walk on stage with confidence, and genuinely inspire and influence my audience?

In this Power Practice, Nan shares her tips for crafting a good strategy before your presentation or conversation so that you will authentically connect with your audience. She illustrates how simple shifts in focus can lead to a tremendous increase in confidence and connection. She also leads us through a breathing practice which releases the jagged energy that comes with high stakes presentations and conversations.

Take 10 minutes to reframe your relationship to public speaking, and let the power of your voice help you make an impact in this world.

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Play Power Practice #16 – Stepping Up and Speaking Out:

Nan CrawfordNan Crawford is on a mission to create a world where women and girls know their power. An expert in how to increase your influence, Nan coaches bold women leaders to step onto a bigger stage. Nan has helped clients secure Executive level promotions, craft funding pitches that have raised millions of dollars, write and deliver powerful presentations for boards of directors, TED, Clinton Global Initiative, The State Department, The White House and The Colbert Report. Clients include: Autodesk, Boeing, Deloitte, eBay, Kaiser Permanente, Google, Paramount, Target, Wells Fargo and World Pulse. She serves as Executive Education Faculty for Columbia, Harvard and UC Berkeley’s Graduate Schools of Business. A cum laude graduate of the University of Texas with a BFA in Theatre, Nan holds an MA from The California Institute of Integral Studies in Organization Development. Nan Crawford has been featured in Fast Company magazine and The New York Times calls her work “inspirational”.

Like what you hear? Why not get in on four full days of power practices, movement, inspiration and collaboration at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO. Join us!

Unity and the Power of a Broken Heart

I sent a (pretty different) version of the email below to a small section of our list last week, and I am so grateful for the responses I got. In sharing our stories, we find strength. We need this strength as we roll up our sleeves for the massive work to come. As Kate McKinnon (dressed as Hillary Clinton, singing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”) said on SNL this week, “I’m not giving up, and neither should you.” Big, big love – CP

Dear Emerging Women,

Tuesday night hit me like a punch to the gut. Like everything I believed about who we’ve become and where we’re headed was jerked out from under me like a tablecloth in some gaudy, awful magic trick. I have spent the last week going through the motions trying to reconcile this pain in my chest, the grief in my bones. Today I surrender to it.

Surrender, you ask? Is that a typo? We need to engage, we need to rally, we need to fight! Yes, all this is true. But there is something very powerful in this heartbreak, and I want to bring it with me to the front lines.

Herman Hesse said, “God sends us despair not to kill us; He sends it to us to awaken new life in us.”

I am ready for this new life. I am ready for a global collective that has the courage to love big and to dream gigantic – even in the face of heartbreak. Maybe especially in the face of heartbreak, for it is through the common human experience of love, loss and longing that we can truly feel connected with others, regardless of what may stand between us.

Maya Angelou said, Have enough courage to trust love one more time and always one more time.” The power of a recovered capacity for love is perhaps the greatest force in the universe because it knows the sacredness of our shared humanity. It is from this place that I want to move forward into the world.

At Emerging Women Live, Glennon Doyle Melton said, “Tell me what breaks your heart I will tell you your purpose.” If you, like me, are sitting with a broken heart, let’s work together to create a world where all people feel included and love is the driving force behind all that we do.

It’s hard to forget a broken heart. So let’s not. Let’s remember. Remember what we stand for, what we love, what made our heart break in the first place. And let’s fight for that with strength, compassion and a fire that refuses to be extinguished.

Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” I truly believe that intersectional feminism will bend that arc like a bow, speeding the path to justice for ALL. So this is not the end. This is an exposé. The skeletons have come tumbling out of America’s closet, and I’m ready to tackle them. With my sisters. Together, we can heal, we can protect, we can uplift, we can impact. And we will. I know we will.

This is a call for citizenship. To live a life of active participation. To place solidly at the center of our focus not just “How can I make my life better?” but “How can making my life better be relevant to making the world a better place?” or in other words, “How can I use my privilege to serve?”

Emerging Women and our sister organizations give me hope. I’m grateful that we’ve built a community that celebrates both individual expression and collective compassion, values that will lead us into a brighter, more just future. Diversity, empathy, and inclusion make us powerful, innovative, creative, and bold.

In unity, we are transformation personified. We are alchemy. We are revolution. And we are love and love again.

Big Love,

 

Chantal Pierrat | Founder, Emerging Women

 

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Grassroots, Love, and Activism: 3 Videos to Inspire

When we feel the call to stand, when we know we must act, it helps to draw inspiration from the trailblazers.

Eve Ensler, Marianne Williamson, and Dr. Jane Goodall, each an EWLive alumna, spring to mind as women who live in the arena, speaking their truth and fighting for what is right.

Our partners at Gaia have shared 3 videos from these pioneers to invigorate us as we come together and work for equality, justice, and understanding at this historical moment in time. Let them fire you up – the world needs you now!

Eve Ensler

“I myself believe in building grassroots revolutions and grassroots energies that can begin to build and amass power and take things over.” – Eve Ensler

Marianne Williamson

“When you say ‘I am love…’ you are shifting your self-perception from the body identification to spirit identification, and that is the journey of enlightenment.” – Marianne Williamson

Jane Goodall

“If we are the most intellectual creature that’s ever walked on the planet, how come we are destroying that planet? We must learn to live in peace and harmony. We all have to get involved.” – Jane Goodall

How are you getting involved? Who inspires you?

Special Event: Power Night to benefit SheEO at Galvanize, Denver

Now more than ever we need to come together as women and leaders to create a collective vision for increasing our power and influence on the planet. I hope you’ll join me at this special event to become re-invigorated, strengthen our networks and create new ways of making capital available to the women entrepreneurs who are creating waves of impact in the world.

Together with our sisters from SheEO, Emerging Women is hosting a Power Night on November 17th at Galvanize in Denver’s Golden Triangle. We’d love for you to join us.

This celebration will feature amazing women who have been blazing the trail to a brighter future and building great businesses in the process. You will also find deep connection and community in our signature Power Circles as you experience the in-the-moment power of asking for and receiving what you need in acts of radical generosity.

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Power Night will benefit SheEO and its movement to redesign how woman-led businesses are funded, supported, and celebrated. Despite women starting businesses at twice the rate of men, they are still wildly underfunded. SheEO is out to change that by building a whole new field of play, created by women for women and built on Radical Generosity. This video explains how:

Emerging Women is supporting SheEO’s Colorado launch, and we want YOU to be part of this growing movement by conencting with and getting inspired by brilliant Colorado women. Ready to make this happen?

EMERGING WOMEN POWER NIGHT

NOV. 17th | Galvanize, Denver 

5:30-6:30pm – Private Reception (become an Activator to join)

6:30-9pm – Keynote, Power Circles and Panel Discussion (free admission)

Register HERE

Interactive Keynote: Jen Louden

Jen Louden is a personal growth pioneer who helped launch the self-care movement with her first book The Woman’s Comfort Book. She’s the author of 5 additional books on well-being and whole living that have inspired more than a million women in 9 languages. Jen has spoken around the world on self-care, written a national magazine column, and even sat on Oprah’s couch talking about the power of retreats.

Panel: Grace and Grit: Founders’ Stories of Vision, Perseverance and Heart

Featuring Niki Koubourlis, Founder and CEO of Bold Betties; Jillian Gibbs, Founder and Global CEO of Advertising Production Resources; Amy Bayer, CoOwner-CoCEO, PorchLight Real Estate Group; Victoria Qunitana, Co-Founder & Board Chair of Istonish, Inc.

niki.pngEvery major life decision Niki Koubourlis made up until 2012 was motivated by a desire for security. The career she chose, the schools she went to, and the man she married were all based on a desire for security. But when she had built that secure little world, she found it wasn’t enough. Her life lacked purpose and passion.

Since leaving her 80+ hour workweeks behind, she has spent a lot of time outdoors, trying new things, seeing new places and making new friends. She is not your stereotypical hardcore, accomplished outdoorswoman, but she discovered that it doesn’t really matter if she is with the right people.

That is why she founded Bold Betties and Bold Betties Outfitters. Bold Betties takes the intimidation out of adventure by connecting women to each other, the outdoors, and ultimately their fabulous selves.

Jillian Gibbs founded APR to set new standards for advertising production consultancies. She sees APR’s role as a true production partner, not a cost-containment advisor. Her vision is to take a more comprehensive approach that helps clients optimize advertising production with stronger processes, greater efficiencies and cutting-edge production approaches across all media. Jillian has helped define new standards and best practices within the production industry throughout her 20+ year career for industry associations like the ANA, WFA, ACA and ISBA.

Today, APR is one of the nation’s fastest-growing advertising production consultancies with subject matter experts in all major production centers (Europe, North America, LATAM, and Asia). Jillian continues to expand APR’s original mission, providing clients with a growing choice of service offerings that reflect the ever-changing media landscape.

As a top-producing REALTOR® in Denver, Amy Bayer averaged more than $10 million in annual sales but inherently knew there was a better way to conduct business. She believed in a company based on emphasizing long-term, authentic relationships—a real estate company that looks at real estate in a different way—one totally committed to the client and that gives back to the communities they serve.

Amy co-founded PorchLight Real Estate Group with her partner, Carol, to raise the bar in the industry. By instituting the highest level of agent education and training standards, the pair created a sophisticated infrastructure and in just 12 years they have risen to the top three brokerages in Denver market share and are arguably the most tech-savvy brokerage in Colorado. A professed self improvement junkie, Bayer leads with eternal optimism, support of her 150+ brokers and is 100% immersed in achieving excellence across her business.

In 1990, Victoria Quintana founded Istonish with her sister, Annette. Their initial vision and dedication to creating an organization that was built on service, excellence and unbendable ethics, has led them from assisting companies and governmental agencies in finding the best technology talent, to now building and delivering IT solutions. Istonish is headquartered in Denver, Colorado, but works nationwide across a diverse sampling of industries: Government entities, medical, energy, telecommunications, oil and gas, as well as small organizations and Fortune 15 companies.

Having led Istonish through rapid growth during turbulent economic times, Victoria now serves as Board Chair while also leading a Denver Vistage International group. Victoria has a passion for strategy and participates on executive advisory boards of companies and non-profit organizations, helping them hone their vision, mission, core values, operational and financial plans.

What a stellar lineup! Get your tickets now, and we’ll see you at Galvanize on November 17th.

Are you owning your voice? Answer these 3 Power Circle questions to find out.

A lot of us are experiencing the call to leadership in big ways. It’s exciting, thrilling even, but it can also feel uncomfortable and risky. Getting in touch with the power of your own voice is a great way to create some solid ground to stand on.

On Saturday morning at Emerging Women Live, we did a Power Circle exercise to facilitate just that. Women got in small groups to answer the questions below. What seemed like simple answers led to some deep discoveries around old patterns and beliefs. 

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There’s an energy that gets sparked when women come together to explore their leadership stories. The Harvard Business Review has cited this connection as an integral step to increasing the number of women in positions of power today.

“Companies should encourage [women] to build communities in which similarly positioned women can discuss their feedback, compare notes, and emotionally support one another’s learning. Identifying common experiences increases women’s willingness to talk openly, take risks, and be vulnerable without fearing that others will misunderstand or judge them.”

Intentional conversation facilitates deeper authenticity and a lot more poetry in the way we speak to one another about our own lives. That’s why Power Circles are one the of the most powerful tools we have at Emerging Women. The quality of how we share our experience is commensurate to the quality of how we are able to show up in the world.

Take a moment to investigate your relationship with personal expression by answering the following questions. Remember, this is not a test – self-discovery is best served with tenderness and sweet curiosity. Let yourself free associate, and jot down or voice memo anything these prompts bring up for you. 

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We’d love to hear any insights you have. Why not start a mini Power Circle in the comments section? Sharing your voice is the first step to owning it, and there’s nothing quite like hearing a kindred spirit say, “I see you.”

And if you’re interested in the full-strength version, join a facilitated group of 7 women for Emerging Women Power Circles. Applications are being accepted now. You can email Carole Lundeen at [email protected] with any questions, or click the link below to check out more Power Circle themes.

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Badassery: The Eightfold Path

In the aftermath of spending several days with a few hundred powerful women in the container of Emerging Women Live, I am focused and energized. What is alive in me is the distinct awareness of possibility in a way that didn’t exist before the conference. I have a clear sense of the space into which I will emerge. It is calling me. There’s a chair at the table with my name on it.

Several months ago I hit a wall. I was exhausted. Flat-out, bone-weary knackered. Drained, depleted, beat, wasted, spent. You get the idea. I had been on a bender several months, giving birth to a batch of new programs and reinventing the way I did business. This is a good thing and as a result, I am fulfilling on my purpose. I am aligned with my passion. I am showing up in the world, climbing into the arena, playing big. I’ve been manifesting like a mad woman. BAM!

As a single mother, writer, coach, speaker, editor, entrepreneur, I play many roles. My hat rack is jammed full, and I wear all of those lids enthusiastically. I often say I am the most competent woman I know. I even changed a tire in my flip-flops one morning on the way to drop my son at school. I got this. I’m a badass, and I know it. And yet somehow I find myself in the familiar place of dragging my badass around wondering why this often feels so hard.

I’m not alone in this. I know a ridiculous number of equally badass women with whom I have this conversation on a regular basis. We are simultaneously inspired and tired. My most desperate moments of energetic decimation have brought me to this realization: there are two varieties of exhaustion.

PHYSICAL EXHAUSTION: The kind of fatigue that shows up when we haven’t fed, watered, moved, or rested our bodies in the way that sustains our wellbeing.

Symptoms: sleepiness, brain fog, headache, muscle weakness, short-term memory loss, difficulty regulating mood.

EXISTENTIAL EXHAUSTION: A syndrome that occurs at a certain point in the downward spiral of compounded physical exhaustion when there is no clear path out of the current paradigm.

Symptoms: overwhelm, depression, lack of motivation, loss of purpose, disorientation, hopelessness.
 
The question that characterizes the state of Physical Exhaustion is, “Can I really do it all?” Once Existential Exhaustion sets in, we find ourselves asking, “Can I really HAVE it all?”

The answers to these questions are largely determined by how we define “all,” but one thing is certain, if the answer is yes, it cannot be at the expense of our wellbeing. The cost of being a badass cannot, by definition, be our badass-ness.

Looking at the essence of what powerful women have in common—what it takes to show up in the world at full-volume, to look for opportunities not just to survive but to thrive, to maximize the potential of experiences and relationships towards a more conscious community, to move through the world with grace and compassion, and to navigate conflict by repeatedly choosing love over fear—I find it can be distilled down to a number of core principles.

If we want to be badass, we must adhere ruthlessly to these eight rules. No slack.

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1. Your own wellbeing is a priority.

You don’t pretend that everyone else’s needs come first. You’ve renounced martyrdom. You might take care of others first, but you never go without eating or sleeping or making everyone wait for a few minutes while you put yourself in time-out.

2. You have a strong statement of purpose and anything that isn’t in alignment with it has to go.

You have determined what it is you are up to here on planet earth and you use that vision as a guiding force in your life. You do not indulge anything that is out of integrity with who you are and you are ruthless in eliminating distraction. You are a living example of what you are bringing forth. You walk the talk. You are the change you want to see in the world. 

3. You have cultivated a relationship with your feminine essence and do what it takes to tend the fire.

You recognize that we are navigating a culture that values our rational minds and celebrates linear, problem-solving, masculine energy. You know that as a woman, you have an innate, intuitive nature that is fluid, expansive, and grows wild. You have developed the tools to access this creative life force to fuel your existence and fulfill on your purpose. 

4. You realize that saying no can be an essential expression of love.

You have a handle on your co-dependency quotient and feel secure in enforcing boundaries as a means of being able to sustain your loving presence in the world. You also know the importance of teaching people to fish for themselves, and that in doing so, they not only develop their own self-sustaining skills, but often discover and innovate in ways that serve others.

5. You have developed a support system and you’re not afraid to use it.

You have let go of the idea that you have to do it all and fully embrace the vulnerability it takes to ask for help. You even enjoy creating opportunities for others to show their love for you through acts of service.

6. At any given time, you can answer the question: What do you need?

No matter what the situation, you have developed a set of criteria by which you check-in with yourself—physically, emotionally, spiritually—to determine your needs, for which you take responsibility, and act accordingly.

7. You are willing to be alone.

You acknowledge that we are born alone and we die alone. While you choose to be in the company of others, you never do so to avoid confronting your own self. And you don’t pretend to have the right to mandate others’ thoughts, feelings, or behavior. In fact, every morning you release the ones you love, graciously, to their path.

8. You are willing to tolerate uncertainty.

You relish the state of “not knowing” because you know that’s where possibility lives. You have cultivated a practice by which you are able to disconnect from your controlling mind and embrace the natural flow of the universe.

5 Things We Can Learn from Successful Women Entrepreneurs

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The entrepreneurial waters are getting more crowded by the day, and it’s a blessing in disguise, especially if we take into account the rising number of businesswomen swimming valiantly upstream and writing their names and legacy proudly as they go. As we pause to applaud the growing female presence in business – a world which has up until recently been considered a male dominion – we might as well pick up a few lessons from ladies who know how to carve off a piece of the corporate cake for themselves and make most of their resources.

If your eyes are set on sustainability and success in the business arena, it’s a smart move to pick up the cues from the best – and the fairest – of world’s top-rated entrepreneurs of the 21st century.

1. Take Every Chance, Drop Every Fear

source: The Times UK

“Fearlessness is like a muscle. I know from my own life that the more I exercise it, the more natural it becomes to not let my fears run me.” – Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post and Thrive Global

Arianna Huffington built a global brand from scratch, and she says she wouldn’t have pulled it off had she allowed her fears to hold her back. If you have a business idea you think might just work, don’t think about the negatives: take initiative and see where it leads you. You’ll be able to tweak your strategy as you go, but unless you hit the road, you’ll be robbing yourself of a chance at success.

2. Don’t Be Ashamed to Ask for Directions

“You get in life what you have the courage to ask for.” – Oprah Winfrey, actress, book author, producer and host of The Oprah Winfrey Show

Face it: you’ll never know all there is to be known about business, but not asking for directions is the safest way to get lost along the way. World-famous female entrepreneur Oprah Winfrey knows just how important it is to do industry-related homework in advance and not be ashamed to ask questions and seek help or guidance when you need it.

If your eyes are on peak business results, research and hard work will get you on the right foot – but it’s the answers that will keep you on the right and fast lane.

3. Quality Is As Important As Quantity

“Those who believe in quality produce quality goods.” – Lailah Gifty Akita, founder of Smart Youth Volunteers Foundation

In a world that revolves around quantity, quality is what makes a brand stand out in the crowd. Lailah Gifty Akita is a shining example that excellence is the road to success – but quality takes time, commitment, and long-term investments. Money spent on first-rate office equipment is an investment in employee comfort, wellbeing, and work motivation and as such has a hand in quality of both workflow and output. Fortunately, entrepreneurs are starting to appreciate the benefits behind ergonomic workstations and seating and are no longer averse to investments in quality office equipment.

4. You’ll Make Mistakes – Learn from Them

“It’s important to be willing to make mistakes. The worst thing that can happen is you become memorable.” – Sara Blakely, Spanx founder

Sara Blakely is America’s youngest self-made female billionaire for a reason: she made mistakes, and she grew from them. According to her, failing is a sign that you’re pushing the limits of your comfort zone and taking risks; as such, errors are an integral component of the path to success. Mistakes are a source of valuable lessons on how you can tweak business strategy and approach to ensure best results in the long-run, so make them – and learn from them, too.

5. Find Your Passion and Go After It

“Ambitious people have a spark that sets them apart. They don’t just accept their lot. They’re fighters and grafters and they claw their way out of often difficult circumstances.” – Karren Brady, English author, columnist, TV personality and vice-chairman of West Ham United F.C. 

The path to success is covered in thorns, but ladies like Karren Brady aren’t fazed by obstacles, which is why they eventually rise to industry top tiers. When going gets tougher than usual, it’s the passion about your line of work that will keep you in the right lane and heading for top-notch performance metrics at full speed. For this reason, the spark is every businesswoman’s best friend: find your passion beyond fame and money, and let it guide you on days when the entrepreneurial waters grow murky.

Swimming in the business shark tank requires courage, constant learning, endurance, and skills – but these successful women have shown that success is attainable and worthwhile. We can all learn a thing or two from those who know business like the back of their ladylike hands, so pick up the cues listed above and put them to practice in your own industry, and laurels will hit home soon.

Who inspires you as your leadership story unfolds? Let us know in the comments.

Benefit and Purpose: Inspiration from the Women at Roche

I am thrilled to present at the 2016 Emerging Women Live Conference sharing ideas and inspiration with a global network of leaders and change makers. I am passionate about bringing out the best in people, and this conference provides a unique opportunity to share pragmatic and honest insights. Together we have an opportunity to take ourselves even further than imagined.
For me, inspiration comes from many sources, but especially from other women leaders at Roche. I had a chance to touch base with colleagues who are attending the conference to find out what led them on the path they are on today and what they would tell other women aspiring toward work of true benefit and purpose.  It’s remarkable to see the shared passion that exists in the field of healthcare.

lin.jpg“Personalized healthcare is a way of care that uses a patient’s genetic and biologic profile to inform both the risk of developing disease as well as a patient’s potential response to certain types of treatment,” says Lin Wu, Vice President of Development. “It enables a targeted approach to understanding and treating diseases and allows doctors to design a treatment path that is as unique as each patient. This has enormous potential to transform healthcare. I am still inspired and look forward to coming to work every day.” Lin’s inspiration and motivation continue to grow with the meaningful impact she has on patients and their outcomes.

laura-apitz.jpgLaura Apitz in our Tissue Diagnostics Unit is a leader of people, a mother of two with a very supportive husband, and she looks forward to where her path will take her next. She has worked in healthcare for more than 23 years and continues to evolve.  “I would tell anyone who wants to work hard, is inspired by technology innovation, and understands the need for improved healthcare globally to pursue a career in this field,” Laura said.  She is inspired by the impact of her team’s work and has seen first-hand how it makes a positive difference in people’s lives. 

Sushma_4x6_300dpi.jpgSushma Selvarajan knew early on what inspired her. “My mom is a mathematician and my dad a physicist, so I rebelled and went into biochemistry,” laughs Sushma who leads teams that design and commercialize novel diagnostic tests. “There are so many opportunities today to better understand human biology through new tools and approaches. It’s a great time to both learn and discover.”

We hear often about the importance of stepping outside one’s comfort zone.  But in the quest for growth, we need to allow ourselves to be a little scared.  I truly believe that people must constantly work to challenge themselves, acquire new skills, meet new people and say yes to new experiences. It’s important to take a step back and enjoy the journey as well as the destinations along the route.

R_Ewald_picture_small.jpgWhen I asked Rebecca Ewald, who leads one of the cervical cancer diagnostic areas about stepping outside her comfort zone she said, “Identify what interests you and understand what motivates you, and don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone – those are key elements that helped me find work of true purpose. Sometimes we need to break our own mold to help get to the next stage of our personal and professional life.”  She has been driven by her curiosity that has pushed these elements forward.

Narges.pngTake Narges Bani Asadi, Head of Bioinformatics. “I want to propel clinical decision making into the future,” she recently shared with me. “We need to push the boundaries of genomic science.”  Narges came to the US from Iran and attended Stanford University, where she was encouraged by her professors to pursue the field of medical technology.  What inspires me about Narges is that she fearlessly embraced her ambition and curiosity to indeed push these boundaries. She started a company called Bina Technologies with a clear vision of the value of genetic information as it pertains to making accurate diagnoses and treatment decisions.  Bina is now an integral part of the company’s Sequencing Unit.

M_Theeuwes_2.jpgAnother colleague, who is a mother of four girls, started her career in Belgium.  Margaret Theeuwes, who manages many projects large and small, followed her strengths. “I say the same thing to men and women, do what you like and what you are good at. The great job you envisioned is out there, someone is most likely doing it now.  It is yours in the future if you understand the path to getting there and then pursue it relentlessly.”  

I hope you will have a chance to meet these inspirational women and get to know them. I know they are looking forward to meeting you. In the meantime, I challenge you to give some thought as to what inspires you and how you can inspire others. I look forward to continuing our conversation.


Sisterhood and Comparison

The squiggle comes while reading Chantal’s shout-out to Glennon Doyle Melton: “This woman is freaking amazing—authenticity, vulnerability, fierceness beyond measure, grit, grace….it’s all there. I can’t compare her to anybody but think Brené Brown, Liz Gilbert, Esther Perel, Anne Lamott, and Oprah all in one! For reals, people—don’t miss this one.”

I know my discomfort has nothing to do with Glennon. In fact, when literary agent and fellow Emerging Woman Kelly Notaras posts a video review of Glennon’s book Love Warrior on FB, I immediately google the Momastery blogger and fall in love with her. “She’s a true soul sister,” I think to myself, “having found her way to freeing the authentic self buried underneath her representative self.”

=Nope. My flinch isn’t about Glennon or Kelly or Chantal.

It’s my own insecurity.

I’m afraid there might not be enough room.

A voice in my head launches into her litany: “You better hurry up. You’re gonna miss your chance. That could have been you that Chantal was raving about. You’re blowing it.”

I peer scornfully at the voice and release my defense: “As if there were a way to hurry up, or pull off the latest 10 Easy Steps to Overnight Success. As if there were a stage—one stage—that, if I got onto it, would finally establish my legitimacy, my happiness, my worth.”

Ugh.

I take a long deep breath, shake my head, and call forth my hard earned superpower: my ability to pause. I enter this hiatus to step back and witness what’s arising. My capacity to detach kicks in strongly. Instead of reacting, I become curious. Years of meditation serve me well at times like this. The witness is now wired into my circuitry right alongside the relentless critical bitch.

I view the bitch’s reaction as the ingenious and honorable work of my reptilian brain. It’s suddenly hilarious to me that a reflex encoded millions of years ago for survival—a miraculous regulating force in the human organism—has somehow come to define survival as getting on the Emerging Women stage.

I chuckle. If I didn’t laugh I would certainly cry.

On a bad day here’s where my attention would be right now:

First stop, Judgement Square. In addition to the bitch calling me pathetic, Judgement Square is where her cronies spout their venom about everyone and everything: Glennon’s just feeding the mainstream dogma. She has no real depth. And Chantal’s just as bad … a phony new-age self-help-femininista.

Next stop, Pity Hill, where weepy voices incessantly wail: If only my mother wouldn’t have been so shut down maybe I wouldn’t have a competition thing with other women. But it wouldn’t matter anyway, because my story is not as interesting as theirs. Glennon is clearly smarter, prettier, and more worthy than I am.

Final destination, Righteous Resignation Corner, where every resident knows that a truly righteous person’s status is established by God alone. The voices here are stoic and disembodied: Your desire to be recognized is an insidious element of the unholiness of your wretched sinful soul.

Though my attention is tempted to slide down the well worn rabbit hole into my primal brain, I turn away from the familiar pathway and take a seat in my frontal lobe. Here I locate objective facts:

I’m perfectly safe.

There’s no threat to my physical life.

There’s no need to believe any of the chatter arising from the amygdala’s domain.

My forebrain confidently reminds me that a certain section of my nervous system is wired to survive, to compete for supremacy in a threatening predatory environment. “She’s merely doing her job,” my neo-cortex assures me. “She’s simply got some wires crossed is all.”

I soften my shoulders and lean back in my chair. I close my eyes. My heartbeat slows and my breathing normalizes. I can now become aware of what else is present other than the impulse to fight or flee.

Fluttering in my upper chest is a yearning.

When I notice it my heart quickens again.

“For what do you long?” I ask.

The answer comes softly and confidently: “I wish to be me.”

Relocating this self is like waking from a dream. Too often I ambulate through life as a confused and fearful dream character. But this one feels like the dreamer. She feels like home.

Through her eyes I now look at Glennon’s face frozen in the FB feed before me. I see power, radiance, and authenticity. I see a sister claiming her voice, sharing her story, taking her place on the stage of life.

I inhale and ask myself, “Is there room for both of you?”

The question now seems silly.

Shameful.

Just a moment ago it felt like life and death.

I know I’m not the only one who acts out due to the programming of well established reptilian neural pathways. I also know I’m not the only one clumsily waking up from this dreadful habit. I imagine I might even be one of a whole slew of homo sapiens approaching the possibility of becoming human. But it’s messy.

I remember the first time HeatherAsh told me she wanted to speak on the Emerging Women stage. I had just signed up for the inaugural Emerging Women Live event in Boulder and, even though HeatherAsh is a dear friend, has been instrumental in supporting my emergence, and is a transformative teacher and advocate for the warrior goddess within, it didn’t matter to the reptilian me. HeatherAsh had no business pushing into my space. After all, maybe I could be the one to step on the Emerging Women stage some day. Not her.

The Emerging Women event successfully yanks me out of my embarrassingly competitive habit by getting me high in a sea of hundreds of women shouting, “Yes! there is room for all of us!” Not only is there enough, but there is an urgent call for each of us to stand and take our rightful place on the world stage. These are unprecedented times. Humanity needs our feminine power and presence. In order to bring her forward we must access the depth of our capacity to be fully “for” each other as women.

Not only do I hear this message reverberate through the voices of the women who stand on the Emerging Women stage, but it’s also embedded into the choreography of the entire gathering. Like a 3-D onomatopoeia, Emerging Women is created by and for emerging women. No woman is considered on the outside. There is no outside. It’s all a matter of finding our rightful place … from the inside out.

I decide to buy my ticket for the second Emerging Women Live event in NYC and manage to side step my reptilian impulse to overtly dissuade HeatherAsh from attending knowing that the dates would not work for her again. However, my nervous system is buzzing on high alert poisoning my ability to be fully “for” her. I hate this feeling.

I sit down and pause to be with myself. Again.

My still small voice is kind when she says, “If you’re truly committed to bringing forward your authentic offering into the world, your place may never be on the Emerging Women stage. But HeatherAsh’s might.”

I settle into this knowing, though not without a bit of struggle. I know the truest, best, most fulfilling life is not found on a strategically targeted stage “out there.” Still, it tempts me.

“Where you stand is your stage,” she whispers to me.

How can I know this for sure?

“Because you’re here standing. Nobody else is in this place.”

I repeat to myself, “I am here. This is my place. I will move forward into the world from here.”

I say this mantra every day.

And so it has come to pass that the fourth Emerging Women Live event is less than a month away, and HeatherAsh is scheduled to teach a workshop. I’ll be a paying attendee for the fourth year in a row and HeatherAsh will be one step closer to the main stage.

I am sincerely thrilled for her. And here’s more good news.

Living my own unique story is getting easier every day. When I’m stressed, tired, or unmindful, my nervous system might flair, leaving me feeling vulnerable and exposed, unsure of my path or my future. At such times I may want to lurch at HeatherAsh and try to knock her off her path. When this occurs, I have only one way through. We are in this together, she and I. So I pause. I tell her what’s happening inside of me. I share my sorrow and my shame, allow my authentic self to show up and be genuinely for her rather than hiding the competitive one and pretending she doesn’t exist. HeatherAsh’s heart bursts open with compassion for me as she confesses her own inner competitive streak. We laugh and cry in each others arms.

This is the way of the sisterhood. Because we’re each connected to Source as the author of our unique life, when we are centered in this place there’s no stopping us. We are fully for one another. Still, let’s be real. We’re works in progress. We’re not always rooted in this place of clarity. We’re more and more grounded there, but not always. What to do when we are not stationed in our deepest knowing is the crucial teaching of these times.

What do I do when I know what the “right” thing is, but my instinct is to do the exact opposite and the strength to do the right thing is simply not available?

I pause.

I stop to witness and identify which self is about to act. I breathe. I rest into my breath and access the Breath that is breathing me. I practice this maneuver over and over and over again without ever believing this process of centering will get easier or that I will never again get drawn out of my center—without ever teaching others that it should be any other way. This is the dance of becoming human. It’s a journey. Not a fixed state.

I download Glennon’s book on my Kindle this morning as I fly to SF from NY. I can hardly put the book down, and have finally done so only because I want to finish writing this blog. The onomatopoeic experience is happening again right now. I’m reading about, observing, and living the emergent feminine. She is everywhere, coming through us with great force.

Maybe you are an emerging woman, too. Maybe I will see you in SF at EW Live in October. If you want to find me, I’ll be cheering on my bestie HeatherAsh and all the other incredible women who will convene to make this event epic. As I walk through the halls I will be emanating this mantra:

I am for you.

Not against you.

I see you.

I love you.

You’re just like me.

We are emerging women.

ORGANIC INDIA: Empowering Women through Opportunity

At ORGANIC INDIA, we know first-hand that when you empower women, you empower community.  As an integral part of our company operations, we invest in women through employment opportunities, fair wages, access to healthcare, job skills training, leadership development, and educational programming.

Why India?

While gender inequality is prevalent around the world, India is among the worst countries for gender equality (World Economic Forum, 2015). According to a 2015 report from the McKinsey Global Institute, India also stands to gain the most with a projected 16% growth in GDP from increased gender equality.

Empowering Women

We take great pride in providing opportunity to our farmers—many from marginalized groups including women, widows, the elderly and the illiterate—enabling self-sufficiency and developing skills to pass on to future generations.

We have seen first-hand that empowered women significantly strengthen families, farming operations and entire communities, providing an overall increase in quality of life.  

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Our efforts to empower women include:

Fair Pay: ORGANIC INDIA pays female farmers premium market wages, equal to their male counterparts. This is a rare opportunity in India, where the gender pay gap is very high. The World Economic Forum reports that Indian women are paid only one-third of what a man in the same position is paid.

Our relationships with farmers are built on mutual respect, dignity and interconnectedness. Fair wages honor this relationship by enabling female farmers to financially support themselves and their families. In addition, we pay farmers whether their crops fail or flourish, providing financial security regardless of temporarily unfortunate conditions.

Job Skills Training Programs: ORGANIC INDIA provides job skills training programs to empower women to achieve gainful employment. Female farmers are educated in organic and regenerative agricultural practices, but we also provide non-agricultural job skills trainings as well. For example, ORGANIC INDIA provides a 6-week stitchery training course to empower women to seek employment opportunities outside of farming.

Leadership on Farms: Because ORGANIC INDIA’s female farmers are educated in agricultural operations, we see them becoming empowered to assume leadership roles and even land ownership on their small family farms. As a result, women are independently leading operations on farms, a role traditionally reserved for men in India.

Employing Widows: In India, widows are largely treated as “untouchables,” forced into a life of begging and destitution. This stigmatized group is ostracized from Indian society, rejected by their families, refused employment and even shelter, due to a superstitious societal belief that they are cursed.

ORGANIC INDIA employs many widows, particularly on our Sweet Rose Farm in Brindavan. Here, you can find women and widows laughing and singing, handpicking rose petals in the fields. It is truly a beautiful sight, which is why we describe our Tulsi Sweet Rose Tea as “stress relieving and magical.” The magic is in the taste of sweet opportunity. Witness the empowered women of our Sweet Rose farm here:

Employment Opportunities

ORGANIC INDIA provides as much employment opportunity as possible to females in India. For example, our 200-person processing plant in Chittoor, Andhra Pradesh operates with 95% female employees. We aim to provide employment opportunities for women both on and off the farm.

Celebrating Women

It is our duty and honor to take action as a company to support and celebrate the achievement of the mothers, daughters and soul-sisters who nurture bravely, build wisely and create compassionately in this beautiful world we live in. When you empower women, it’s not one person or one family that you affect — it’s the entire village. Every day we honor our women farmers, whose work and wisdom create sustainable land, strong families and healthy communities.

Learn more at: www.ORGANICINDIA.com

Radical Authenticity: The Path to Your Soul’s Purpose

There is a system.

And the rule of the system seems to be: If you want my resources, you gotta fit in. In the business world, whether in reference to raising seed money or spearheading a launch, this often translates to “You wanna lead, lady? Better man up.”

A lot of companies are trying to buck the system by intentionally funneling women into leadership positions, but those programs don’t always succeed. Women drop out (“in droves,” say most headlines on the subject). Is it because we’re soft, lazy, unskilled, or “not leadership material?” No! We’re simply tired of putting on the masculine masks (maskulines?) that companies hand out like parking passes as we climb the ladder.

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Trying to be something you’re not is taxing, and it’s not how ground-breaking work gets done. A Harvard Business Review study found that “Overinvestment in one’s image diminishes the emotional and motivational resources available for larger purposes. People who focus on how others perceive them are less clear about their goals, less open to learning from failure, and less capable of self-regulation.”

Sounds grim, but what happens if we turn the tables on perception? The same article suggests that we should “anchor women’s development efforts in a sense of leadership purpose rather than in how women are perceived.” Men are encouraged to devote energy to how they’ll lead and not squander it on how they’ll be perceived if they lead. We can do the same if we have the courage and support of our sisters.

Did the Harvard Business Review really say sisterhood helps?

Pretty much: “Companies should encourage [women] to build communities in which similarly positioned women can discuss their feedback, compare notes, and emotionally support one another’s learning. Identifying common experiences increases women’s willingness to talk openly, take risks, and be vulnerable without fearing that others will misunderstand or judge them.”

Yes. Yes. Yes. That’s our whole jam at Emerging Women! We want to help you hone in on your leadership purpose by creating a safe space for radical authenticity. We invite strong women like Janet Mock and Glennon Doyle Melton and Elizabeth Gilbert into the community to model radical authenticity in its many textures and hues. They tell it like it is, give voice to the doubts and own the vulnerabilities that will soon alchemize into strengths. They are unapologetic, tender, forgiving and inclusive.

We hear that kind of delivery – it strikes a deep chord with the cosmic feminine. And it legitimizes those of us who are working with parallel experiences, but haven’t yet voiced them (in private let alone in public).


So let’s make a pledge.

Let’s drop the weight of these masks so we can focus on our soul’s purpose.

Let’s actively participate in a community of radical authenticity. Share your strange, wild truth and celebrate it in others. We will fuel ourselves and each other, and we will spark a movement of leaders who are not simply passing as successful, or happy, or perfect, but who are real and ready to heal this world and make it a more compassionate, innovative, abundant and sustainable place.

Janet Mock: How Speaking Your Truth Increases Your Power

We are all emerging. We are working to manifest an outer life that aligns and resonates with our deepest and most true inner selves. Some emergences may be more physically obvious than others, but the priciples behind them remain the same. It takes trust, courage, and community to emerge.

Janet Mock is a model of all three traits. Her transition was superpowered by her belief that she knew herself, and no one could tell her otherwise. She trusted that inner voice, had the courage to speak it aloud, and shared her story in her book Redefining Realness, a trans girl’s coming of age memoir, to serve as a blueprint for others. That’s radical authenticity, and it has the power to make meaningful impact in the world.

At the end of her engaging Emerging Women podcast, we asked Janet what she would say to women who are no longer willing to compromise their inner truths for outside audiences.

This is how Janet answered:

“All of us, everyday, are fighting so hard to take off the masks that we were trained to put on in order to survive.

A lot of the work is undoing all the things that we learned about what we were supposed to do in order to be deemed as valuable or to be deemed as heard. We have to do that work of taking off those masks and revealing ourselves.

It takes a lot of power to be that vulnerable publicly, to exert your truth publicly, to no longer listen to all the commentary and what everyone outside of you are saying but then to just listen to what you know is true for yourself. What’s going to bring you happiness, what’s going to bring you joy, what’s going to make you content in the world?

For me, it’s been a life’s journey to come to that space to say, ‘Just because you may perceive me in a certain way, I have a lot of experiences that you may not see on the surface, but they are a part of me and I will own them.’ I will no longer think that having labels of trans or black or woman as things that I should push aside in order to be seen as more powerful. You know what? I’m going to actually speak them out, because me speaking them out and saying them and reclaiming them actually gains me more power. There’s such power in the truth, and we can emerge from such darkness when we tap into ourselves and tap into our truths.

May it be so, dear Emerging Women! Share your true voice with us in the comments section.

Have you heard Janet’s Emerging Women podcast? Tune in here:

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Deep. Juicy. Vibrant. Electric. What Happens When Women Circle-Up.

I was walking the dog the other night when I felt it, deep in my belly: a stirring, a pulling.

Earlier in the day I had been finalizing the logistics of my trip to San Francisco for Emerging Women Live. There were calls with my best friend who lives in Noe Valley to arrange a night together, making the decision to stay in the hotel for the conference, securing reservations for the doggie spa while I am away, and more—all the things that need to be handled in order to create a clearing for myself.

And then, when the sky was dark, and the city was still, my senses tuned to the wind, the moon, the earth… that’s when I felt it. It was the call of my sisters, the annual tribal council. The time when we gather together from far and wide, from our varied outposts to discuss, observe, and discern the state of all things.

The feeling in my belly deepened, rooting in my sacrum and rising up my spine. I felt the heat in my solar plexus, vibrating in my throat, my forehead, and the top of my head. I was waking fully to the impending magic. With a skip in my step I turned back towards home, pausing for one more moment, one more breath of the cool night air. I turned my face to the stars in gratitude for the many gifts in my life. The full moon was the kind that begged to be howled at, so alone with my dog on the street in Los Angeles, I did.

I’ve been gathering with groups of women as long as I can remember. The first time I recognized it as such, was as President of Women’s Coalition in high school. We were a group of young women from various social groups who would assemble in the home of our beloved advisor, Katherine Alcorn—a former Betty Crocker Homecoming Queen from her small town in rural America, who had since become liberated under the guidance of Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, and the second wave of feminism. We would share our personal experiences as women in the landscape of our suburban New York public high school society, discuss national and world politics, inspire and challenge each other into social activism to contribute to the cause of empowering women and shifting gender balance wherever we could. It was the first taste I had of the what happens when we join together with intention, an act that I now refer to as “circling-up”.

We gather in circle to hold each other in sacred space and purpose.

We circle-up to share our stories, to be seen, to deepen our identities as individuals and as a group. Held by the safe container of sisterhood, it becomes possible to bring forth the most tender parts of ourselves so that they may be healed, so that our vulnerabilities may become strengths. It is by leaning into sisterhood that we are able to transform ourselves and our world.

Deep. Juicy. Vibrant. Electric. There is a certain magic that is at once palpable and inexplicable. A post-menopausal woman waking on Day Two with her period, the discovery of a life’s purpose, a spontaneous healing, the forging of a sustaining friendship in a nanosecond… these are all stories from the floor of Emerging Women Live.

I participate in a number of conferences—yoga festivals, coaching summits, meditation retreats—where like-minded people with a common interest gather to practice. What is so unique about Emerging Women Live is that our “common interest” is our gender, and our only agenda is to spend four days in community exploring the experience of being a woman. What brings us together is not what we do, but an essential part of who we are.

To maximize this powerful experience, here are a few tips:

1. No Comparison

Sitting in a room with 600 women, it is natural to compare ourselves to others, but don’t. A maple tree doesn’t spend time wishing it were a juniper tree, or thinking about how much more beautiful its leaves are than the juniper’s needles. Comparison inherently diminishes one or the other. It arises from a mindset of scarcity, when in fact there is enough for each of us, and each of us is enough. When we raise each other up, we all rise together.

2. Think Small

When considering potential peak experiences, meeting some of our idols tops the list. There are some spectacular women speaking, and the intimacy of the event makes them unusually accessible. But don’t forget that there are also hundreds of small, powerful moments throughout the weekend. Sometimes the shortest conversation or the briefest hug can have the biggest impact, if we are present and available to it.

3. Moment to Moment

Setting an intention is a powerful way to experience the conference. Articulating why we are there and what we wish to achieve brings focus and clarity. At the same time, allowing ourselves to be flexible and spontaneous creates a pathway for unexpected gems. Let the story of your weekend (and the subtext) reveal itself one page at a time.

4. No FOMO

Do you know this term? Fear of Missing Out. Let’s face it, if it were possible to be in two places at once, this would be the time. Alas, we will need to make some choices during the course of the conference. Whether it’s choosing one workshop over another, or opting to take a break, do so with the confidence that you are exactly where you should be. Listen to your body, your mind, your spirit, and honor its pace. Sometimes we need a moment of stillness so the wisdom can sink in.

5. Root Down, Stretch Up

Each of us has a modus operandi, a frequency at which we normally run. This tendency becomes more apparent—and even exaggerated—when confronted by the excitement and energy of an event like Emerging Women Live. If you are someone who tends to be scattered and unfocused, remember to slow down. If you are often quiet and slow, challenge yourself to participate. This is the perfect time, in the safety of sisterhood, to dig deep into your authentic self and stretch into who you are becoming.

6. The Word is Connection

Above all else, Emerging Women Live is about connection. The most powerful moments arise when we connect with each other. As women, we feel deeply. It is our birthright, our superpower. The willingness to be vulnerable is the key to the door of connection. The growth and transformation we seek, both individually and as a group depends on our ability to touch each other. In our hyper-connected, multi-tasking, 140-character world, we often feel isolated and alone. Connection is the medicine. Take a heroic dose.

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5 Valuable Business Insights via Alaskan Backroads Biking Trip

Do lessons learned outdoors apply to the office setting? For Kate Purmal they do. And with over 15 years of experience as CEO, COO and CFO, and a stellar record both as a business advisor and consultant for Moonshot launches, we’re all ears when she’s sharing advice.

Stoke the campfires of inspiration with Kate Purmal’s pedal-powered business insights below, and be sure to listen to her Grace & Fire podcast for more game-changing ways to catalyze your business (and mindset).

I just returned from a six-day bike trip in Alaska with the active travel company Backroads. The trip was superb. Jaw-dropping natural beauty, fantastic food, unbelievable guides, great equipment and routes, 17 new friends from the US and Brazil, and a lot of rain.

As the trip finished I found myself wishing we had just a few more days on the bikes, a completely unexpected outcome given that I had just covered 275 miles in the saddle.

Several insights came to me as I rode through Alaska’s magnificent mountains and valleys. Here they are, with my take on how they relate to business – and life.

Insight #1: When it gets tough, the only way out is through. Refocus on what’s good and working rather than resisting what’s not. 

The second day of our ride through the Matanuska Valley started in a complete deluge. After an hour, it was clear to me that despite my hope and optimism, the rain was not going to let up. By this time my feet were soaking wet and the rest of me was soggy at best, though I was reasonably warm — at least until we turned onto the Glenn Highway to ride along the Matanuska River when the headwinds hit. Here I was riding through some of the most magnificent places in the world, and all I could focus on were my soaking wet and numb feet, freezing cold hands, painful sit bones, and aching legs as I struggled to ride slightly uphill in a cold and forceful headwind.

Kate Purmal in the Alaskan Backroads

In need of renewed energy, I stopped to take a break and have a snack. In the stillness I found my way through. I was completely alone along this wide, majestic river. No cars, no people, nothing but fast moving water, sky, trees and mountains. The Matanuska wove a disorganized braided course through the grey silt riverbed. The first of the birch trees had started to change color, their bright yellow and orange leaves screaming against a backdrop of grey and green. This was why I had journeyed to Alaska.

When I got back on my bike, I committed myself to remain focused on the beauty and not the rain, and tuned my ears to listen for the sounds of water, wind and birds. Though I was still soaked through and exhausted, I had managed to discover the joy and wonder of the raw grace of the landscape, even in the driving rain. The next 20 miles were just as miserable, but I had stopped resisting the rain and wind, and instead started to enjoy the ride.

In business we often hit long and difficult periods that seem fraught with obstacles and challenges. It’s easy to be disheartened by the arduous struggle of the present situation. While breakdowns and setbacks are discouraging, if you stop to take a break, you can remind yourself of what’s working, what’s already been accomplished, and the purpose that’s fueling your commitment. This creates a shift from resisting what’s happening in the moment to instead experiencing the goodness that comes as you and your team work together to find your way through.

Insight #2: Recognize, celebrate and be inspired by the heroic efforts of those around you.

Our longest ride was on day four and it provided the opportunity for intrepid bikers to test their mettle on a “century ride” of more than 100 miles. My appetite for a long ride was not that great, so I set my sights on riding two of the four segments for a total of just over 50 miles.

At the starting point of the second segment, where my ride began, Emily rode in just as I was finishing my bike adjustments and getting set to take off. Emily doesn’t own a road bike. She takes spin classes to stay in shape – and she is in great shape – but that’s not the same as road biking shape. Emily came to Alaska on a mission – she had committed to ride every segment – a total of 336 miles in five days. She had ridden 88 miles the previous day, and despite the cold and rain that greeted us that morning, she was committed to riding the 107 miles that awaited her, and she brought it.

As I rode off I couldn’t stop thinking about Emily’s determination, and how despite the fact that she was often the last one to reach the checkpoints and finish the ride, she just kept on going. Emily was solid in her commitment to finish despite moments where she wanted to give up. It was Emily’s grit I borrowed when I made the decision to get back on my bike to ride the 88 mile option and finish not two, but three segments of the ride, including the most difficult segment with a 2,000+ foot elevation gain on the climb up Thompson Pass. This was by far the best day of biking for me. It was a breakthrough, and it shifted my perspective on what I could accomplish on a bike. And it was all inspired by Emily’s heroism.

In any difficult project, when breakdowns happen and breakthroughs are discovered, heroes emerge. These acts of heroism, when made visible, serve to inspire others on the team and build momentum for the project. When the project gets tough and your enthusiasm wanes, it’s a great opportunity to look around and discover a hero among the ranks, and take the time to acknowledge and celebrate his or her contribution.

Insight #3: When you think you’re at or near the top, you’re probably not. Pace yourself.

Just before setting off on my climb up Thompson Pass, our guides told me about the route. They told me the steepest part of the climb was at the end, and it was a series of three stair steps – steep climbs followed by a relatively flat section leading to the next climb. I failed to pay attention when they told me the mile mark to watch for signaling the beginning of the series, nor did I know the exact mile mark of the summit. So I was left to rely on visual clues to determine when I was getting close to the end of my climb. Bad idea.

I went over what I thought was two sets of stair steps and had the third in sight. But as I got near the top of the third, I could see ahead that the climbing wasn’t yet done. Not even close. I knew then that I needed to climb without knowing which hill was the real summit, and as such, pace myself to be ready in case new hills emerged. Setting into a comfortable pace made all the difference. And I did eventually reach the top, though probably after three or four more sections of what I thought would surely lead to the summit.

I’ve had similar experiences in business. For example, when my team and I set our sights on the launch of a new product, we assume that as soon as we reach that milestone we’ll be able to catch our breath and coast downhill for awhile. In reality, the launch of a new product sets into motion a whole series of new challenges and milestones, new routes to climb. It’s critical to recognize and prepare people for this inevitability, and help create the right pace for the project – one that is aggressive yet can be sustained to reach the big milestone, still leaving everyone on the team with enough in reserve to summit a few more hills when they appear. A completion event can be tremendously useful for this. When you’ve hit a milestone, celebrate it and have everyone on the team recount the accomplishments and successes along the way. This can help to re-energize the team so they’re ready for the next challenge.

Insight #4: Refuel before you need it so you don’t bonk.

It took me several days to correlate the precipitous drop in energy that seemed to happen about two hours into a ride with a lack of glucose. Duh! This, by the way, comes without warning. You don’t feel hungry or thirsty – there is nothing to trigger your instincts to give your body fuel. All you know is that suddenly it’s REALLY hard to ride the bike, even harder if you’re climbing hills. What was fun a few miles back becomes instantly grueling. My solution was to stop and refuel on a regular schedule whether I wanted to or not – about every 90 minutes. That kept me out of the bonk zone.

One of the most persistent complaints I hear from the executive clients I work with – and one of the biggest challenges I faced as an executive – is the sheer volume of work and meetings. Executives work all day and go from meeting to meeting, often failing to eat lunch or even use the bathroom. One suggestion I make is to schedule meetings in 25 or 50 minute increments vs. the usual 30 or 60 minutes. That way they have time built into every hour to grab some food, stretch their legs, or take a bio break. And sometimes they even have time to make an urgent phone call or respond to a quick email. This lowers their stress, keeps them more engaged in their work, and leaves them with more energy when they go home to their families.

Insight #5: The best part is not always what’s best.

On the first day, there was an optional 4.5 mile climb from a turnaround point at Hatcher Pass up to Independence Mine, a ride with a punishing 11 percent grade. For those who rose to the challenge, the promised payoff was an exhilarating 4.5 mile ride back down the hill. Sounds perfect, right? Not so fast.

I chose not to make the extra climb. But those who did were not greeted with exhilaration. Instead, the descent was steep and harrowing, and the riders were wet from the rain and without sufficient clothing, leaving most of them freezing on the way down. Hardly the reward they anticipated.

How many times have you toiled to achieve something remarkable, only to find that the experience was not what you expected? Yet another reminder that it is, in fact, the journey that is the reward.


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Kate Purmal is a pathological optimist and accomplished visionary who brings out the brilliance in leaders and their teams. She has over 15 years of experience working as a CEO, COO and CFO to start-ups and privately held technology and life sciences companies. Kate previously served as a Senior Vice President at SanDisk and was on Palm Inc.’s founding management team. Kate regularly works with executives, leaders and their teams to initiate game-changing initiatives by launching Moonshots. She is co-author of The Moonshot Effect, Disrupting Business as Usual. Visit our website at www.themoonshoteffect.com

Power Practice #15: Unhooking from Praise and Criticism

Feeling stuck? You’re not alone.

Many of us can vividly imagine the next phase of our lives, but are reluctant to take the leap until we’re “ready.” That’s why we love women’s business leadership expert and Emerging Women Live speaker Tara Mohr. Tara has made it her mission to dig into the underlying reasons we think we’re “not ready yet.” Much of it has to do, she says, with getting hooked on praise and criticism.

As we maneuver through our lives, we give a lot of credence to other people’s opinions. The business world is wrapped in layers and layers of feedback. And while feedback can be helpful, it can be debilitating if taken too personally.

Hit play to try Tara’s exercise in freeing yourself from praise and criticism to allow yourself to operate at your highest potential. Grab a pen and get ready to take that leap!

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Play Power Practice #15 – Unhooking from Praise and Criticism:

“Feedback can never tell you anything about yourself. It can only tell you about the person giving feedback.”

Tara Sophia Mohr is an expert on women’s leadership and well-being. She is the author of Playing Big: Find Your Voice, Your Mission, Your Message and creator of the acclaimed Playing Big leadership program for women, which now has more than 1000 graduates from around the world. Tara writes a popular blog on women’s careers and well-being at www.taramohr.com and has been featured on Today and in publications ranging from Huffington Post to Harvard Business Review to mariashriver.com. Tara received her MBA from Stanford University and her undergraduate degree in English literature from Yale. In 2010, Tara was named a Girl Champion by the Girl Effect organization, honoring her work on girls’ education in the developing world. She is also a poet, and the author of Your Other Names: Poems for Wise Living.

Like what you hear? Why not get in on four full days of power practices, movement, inspiration and collaboration at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8 in Denver, CO.

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Mallika Chopra & Joan Blades join Emerging Women Live!

Mallika Chopra

We are thrilled to announce that Mallika Chopra will be joining us at Emerging Women Live 2016, with a keynote presentation entitled Living With Intent – My Somewhat Messy Journey to Purpose, Peace and Joy.

Mallika Chopra is a mom, media entrepreneur, published author, and a notable voice in the fields of parenting, meditation and the power of intention. Her most recent book is Living With Intent – My Somewhat Messy Journey to Purpose, Peace and Joy; and her previous books, 100 Promises To My Baby; and 100 Questions From My Child, have been translated and sold in dozens of countries worldwide.

Mallika is the founder of Intent.com – an online destination for turning your intentions into tangible actions, and inspiring others to do the same. Her intent is to harness the power of social media to connect people from around the world to improve their own lives, their communities and the planet.

Her varied background includes launching the Heal The World Foundation in the 1990’s with Michael Jackson, being part of the initial team to re-launch MTV in India, and starting The Chopra Well, a premiere YouTube channel with her brother, Gotham Chopra, and father, Deepak Chopra.

Mallika enjoys speaking to audiences around the world, and has shared her passion about Intent at TedXBerkeley, the 2016 Milken Institute Global Conference, the Robb Report Health and Wellness Summit, Ideacity, Business Innovation Factory, the Green Festivals, LOHAS, The California Women’s Conference, The Prevention R3 Conference, and many more. Mallika has an BA from Brown University, and MBA from Kellogg Business School.

What intentions will you set when you join Mallika Chopra and the rest of the Emerging Women community for our transformational annual event in San Francisco? We’d love to know.

Joan Blades

Joan Blades is a progressive political activist, businesswoman and entrepreneur who co-founded MoveOn.org after selling her software company Berkley Systems in 1997 for 13.8M. She also co-founded MomsRising.org, the grassroots organization of more than a million people who are working to achieve economic security for all moms, women, and families in the United States.

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We are so proud to bring this champion for equality and respectful civil discourse to the EWLive stage. Trained as an attorney and mediator, and with decades of experience under her belt, Joan Blades will bring a fresh perspective on the importance of the feminine value of communication to authentic and effective leadership.

What would you ask Joan Blades if you could?

New Workshops

We’ve added three juicy descriptions of workshops to the schedule this week. Which ones are a “can’t miss” for you? Register today to save your seat.

“Playing Big: Practical Wisdom for Women Who Want to Speak Up, Create, and Lead​” with Tara Sophia Mohr

​Tara Sophia Mohr, women’s leadership expert, speaker, and author of the acclaimed book, Playing Big, offers women wise, simple, and proven strategies to make big changes in their own lives, their careers and the world at large. With stories from her own journey of playing bigger, and those of women on the playing big path, Tara will share why so many women today are playing small and the simple but surprising shifts that enable us to play much bigger. You will learn tools to:

  • Manage self-doubt
  • “Unhook” from praise and criticism
  • Deal wisely with fear
  • Begin taking bold action to play bigger right now

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“The Crossroads of Should & Must” with Elle Luna

Have you ever asked yourself the question “How can I find and follow my true calling?” That moment is what Elle calls “standing at the crossroads of Should and Must.” “Should” is what we feel we ought to be doing, or what is expected of us. “Must” is the thing we dream of doing, our heart’s desire. And it was her own personal journey that inspired Elle to share her story which, in a few short months, has touched hundreds of thousands of people who’ve read it or heard Elle speak on her new book: The Crossroads of Should and Must.

Starting out or starting over, making a career change or making a life change, the most life affirming thing you can do is to honor the voice inside that says you have something special to give, and then heed the call and act. Many have traveled this road before. Elle’s keynote will share how you can choose must, too.

“MoneyType: Learn How Your Values Impact Your Money”with Amanda Steinberg

How do your values impact your money? No matter your level of financial knowledge, you have a MoneyType that shapes your unique perspective on your finances. Amanda Steinberg, CEO of DailyWorth and WorthFM, will discuss how everyone is a unique combination of 5 MoneyTypes, each with their own gifts and sabotage patterns. Learn how to make your money work for you.

“Outrageous Openness: Letting the Divine Take the Lead” with Tosha Silver

Tired of running yourself ragged? Of constantly efforting, striving, and pushing to manifest your desires? Come join Tosha Silver as she speaks to a different way of Being, of a life of aligning with Divine Source. When the Divine is invited in fully no problem is too big or too mundane; everything becomes holy.

The first step in this invitation is the sacred act of Offering. Offering isn’t about giving up, it’s actually impassioned, soul-deep surrender. It allows miracles and surprises far beyond what the mind can conceive.  The right actions get shown at the right time.

Offering navigates that tricky space where Desire and Detachment meet. It’s truly the key that opens the door to Love and yet it’s actually very, very practical! Solutions arise in ways the ego would never imagine.  When all is Offered, life begins to happen through you rather than by you.

Check out more workshop choices HERE.

Could Women Overturn Traditional Labor Roles?

A 21st century woman who’s looking for a lucrative and in-demand field in which to start a career—or a business—may want to consider the skilled trades. While women have not traditionally filled job roles like electrician, carpenter, welder, or HVAC technician, they may find it easier these days to break in and find success than in the past due to shortages of skilled labor and greater emphasis on workplace diversity. Plus, many women could find benefits to working in the trades compared to traditionally female-dominated fields.

Skilled Labor Shortage

Over recent decades, graduating high school seniors have been steered toward pursuing a college degree rather than vocational training. Popular opinions regarding education and professional success have influenced this push. As a result, there are fewer young people trained to take up skilled trade positions for those who are retiring. One piece of proof for this trend is that the number of unemployed construction workers fell by 1.1 million in the four years before 2014 according to Associated General Contractors of America. Another statistic indicative of a move toward a skilled labor shortage is the fact that 35 percent of 112 economists surveyed in 2015 by the National Association for Business Economics reported skilled labor shortages.

Workplace Diversity

At the same time that the skilled trade labor shortage is developing, businesses are becoming more and more eager to build a diverse workforce. Diversity in the workplace is not just about ethnic or racial diversity, but also about gender diversity. This means that women nowadays may find that it is easier for them to land a job in the skilled trades since an increasing number of employers are eager to diversify their teams.

Advantages of Skilled Trades

Among the advantages that working in the skilled trades might be expected to bring to female workers are higher salaries, more affordable educational requirements, and higher job demand, as this graphic below highlights. Equally enticing are the entrepreneurial opportunities available in the skilled trades: the construction industry has the second highest rate of self-employment of all major industries. More women-owned businesses could prove beneficial and inspirational for all women!

Check out this beautiful infographic to learn more about all that the trades have to offer women:

Tribal Alliance: The Antidote to Adversity

women together in strength by Suhyeon ChoiAt the 2009 Vancouver Peace Summit, the Dalai Lama predicted that Western women will save the world.  At the time, I believed that he was speaking about the impressive panel of female attendees, including three Nobel peace laureates, the Irish president, humanitarians, filmmakers—acclaimed peacemakers.  But through my work with Threads Worldwide and Emerging Women, our women Artisan Partners in developing countries, our Fair Trade Partners in the US, and the countless trailblazing women I have met on my journey, I have come to realize that the possibility he was talking about was me. He was talking about them. He was talking about you.

So I invite you to join me in this world-changing movement. I urge you to enlist in the tribe of empowered women who are making a difference, one dollar at a time, one necklace at time, one kneecap-to-kneecap conversation at time. Join us in creating a world that is fair, that is founded in compassion, that sees beyond gender, race, religion, and the depths of one’s pocket.

Surrounding yourself with Sisterhood = HOPE

Our vision has the power to equalize, and is built upon the notion that a seven-year-old Cambodian girl, sold into the sex trade, has the same amount to offer as a Fortune 500 CEO. She is equally worthy of love and joy and belonging.  She is equally deserving of the opportunity to contribute to her family, her community, and to help create a better world. That is her universal right. And it belongs to all of us.

This past weekend, surrounded by revolutionary women at our Threads Worldwide annual conference, I felt a gap close that had been welling over the past few months, blackened by mass shootings, suicide bombers, venomous political posts and mean-spirited debate. I felt hope. HOPE!

I understood, down to my core, that there is a way through. A way of being, of working together, of lifting one another up.

As women, we are inherently collaborative, compassionate, intuitive, and empathetic. We lead with our hearts and envision ourselves as part of the whole. These values—that I believe will save the world—have been undermined and devalued over the course of history. For our entire history, women across the globe have been told that our superpowers have no place in business, no place in politics, no place in any position of power.

Well, I say enough! THIS is our time. Our time to come together. Our time to live from a mindset of abundance rather than scarcity. Our time to walk our talk. Our time to lend a hand to someone who is struggling. Our time to fight injustice, to transcend senseless violence, greed, war, and the “us versus them” mentality that is pervasive and toxic.

Ways to stay hopeful in this troubled environment:

  1. Surround yourself with powerful sisters
  2. Face the challenging times by keeping the discussion going with others
  3. Turn conversations into actions that ripple into the community

There IS a way through. But it starts with you and me recognizing that we are all in this together. Let’s bring our tribes together with the understanding that our vision is only the beginning—that it is our alliance that will bring about change, much more effectively than our independent efforts.

We can do this. We really can. Let’s save the world. Are you in?


kara wiegandKara Wiegand has over 12 years experience in the non-profit sector with a focus on business development, sponsorship, accounting and finance. In 2011 she launched her own successful business, Threads Worldwide, which connects women in developing countries who make beautiful jewelry with women in the US who are interested in making money while making a difference in the lives of others. Kara believes in women supporting women to raise our collective voice and better our global community and standards of living.

5 Principles of Being True from Tami Simon

After decades of interviewing gurus for her multimedia publishing company Sounds True, Tami Simon has picked up the mic to share some insights of her own. Her new audiobook, Being True: What Matters Most in Work, Life & Love, brims with 30 years of wisdom gleaned both from spiritual leaders and her own personal journey inward.

At Emerging Women’s Power Night Boulder, Tami let us in on the “5 Principles of Being True” she outlines in her book. We were captivated by her grace, humor and wit, and transfixed by her fresh perspective on living the truth of who you are. Read on to see why…

1. Recognize that each of us has never been here before

We are all unprecedented, and it’s important to acknowledge that. Referring to us all as “exploding mysteries,” Tami says it’s crucial to realize that no one can actually tell you how to be true. This means a lot coming from someone who’s questioned all the major players in the spiritual wisdom game. No one has the unique formula for your truth except you.

2. Spend time in a place where there are no reference points

We love this about Tami Simon. If you’ve listened to her Grace & Fire podcast, you know that Tami believes in The Mystery, and encourages us to spend time there. “Stop avoiding the void,” she says, and hang out in a space where there are no thoughts or images to rest upon. Why? Because it allows for unique transmissions that will leave you saying “Who the heck knew that?” Give the universe a chance to speak to you to find answers no guru can give.

3. Find directionality through natural inspiration

Tami is quick to point out that the inspirations you receive are often not glamorous, but a “Who knows?” attitude will give the phenomenal world a chance to play its hand. If you want to discover your Sacred Function, the universe is available to guide you towards it, as long as you’re willing to hang out in the unknown and be breathed by it.

4. Be brave and follow what’s needed

Choose “The Path of No Embarrassment.” We do not have to be embarrassed about who we are or whatever conditions we might find ourselves in. If acting on transmissions from the Mystery causes some awkward moments, at least we brought forth our love as best as we knew how. “That’s good!” says Tami, which brings us to…

5. Believe in your basic goodness

Pure goodness, Tami says, is bringing forth our gifts in service to others. You’ve got to believe that no matter what, your heart is filled with goodness. When you focus on that, you are filled with an unconditional confidence in goodness, and can act on your inspirations knowing they come from love.

Tami closed the brilliant Power Night evening with a blessing that reflected these 5 Principles of Being True up perfectly, and we’d like to share it with you here:

“May our Sacred Functions come wildly alive. May you touch gazillions of people. May you shine your light without embarrassment.”

To get in on more high-caliber inspiration like this, join us at Emerging Women Live 2017, featuring Elizabeth Gilbert, Esther Perel, Dominique Christina, Sera Beak, and more, October 5-8 in Denver, CO.

The Importance of Sex for Women

Throughout my years of working with women, there is a conversation that I have over and over. The specific details vary, but the bottom line is that an enormous number of women have lost their desire for physical intimacy. We are too tired, too busy, too angry at our partners—at the end of the day, the last thing we want is to let someone into our bodies. For many women, sex has become another thing on the To Do List—an obligation, a favor. What is most surprising and disheartening about this pervasive attitude is the idea that sex is not important for women. Culturally, we give our brothers permission to want sex, to claim its importance, but we don’t do the same for our sisters.

There are many things that shape our sexuality without us even realizing it—the way our parents expressed affection with each other when we were young, and the way nudity was treated in the household. What about our relationships with our fathers and brothers? Did you hear comments about being so pretty your father would need a gun when boys started to want to date you? What does that say about sexual desire in general and how does it affect us to be told we are vulnerable and need one man to protect us from another one? Much has been written about how the media shapes our feelings about ourselves—the advertising industry portrays women in a very specific way. What if we fall outside the range of what we hear is HOT? From booty-licious to thigh-gap, we have many criteria of desirability by which to judge ourselves.

From the time we are young girls, we receive a constant stream of mixed messages about our sexuality. With all noise interfering, it’s nearly impossible to cultivate a healthy relationship with a very tender part of ourselves. We are given little context for our identities as sexual creatures. And yet, it is exactly this expression that spawns life and sustains humanity—lest we forget, the survival of the species depends on women wanting to have sex.

There is scientific evidence of the physiological benefits of sex for women. Engaging in sex regularly has the following effects:

  1. Increases DHEA—Hormone that boosts immune system. Produces healthier skin, and decreases depression.
  2. Increases Oxytocin—Hormone that causes the release of endorphins, a natural opiate that relieves pain.
  3. Reduces Cortisol—Sex reduces stress, and thereby reduces cortisol levels which means more balanced blood sugar, blood pressure, and lower acidity in the abdomen.
  4. Increases Immunoglobulin A—Antibody which boosts immunity. Women who have sex twice a week have 30% higher level of immunoglobulin A.
  5. Some studies even show evidence that the increased blood flow and muscular contractions that occurs with regular penetration and orgasm promotes the structural health of a woman’s pelvic floor.

Though the facts are compelling, ironically the very nature of looking to science to prove we should be having sex is an obvious symptom of the reason why we are not having it. We are so caught up in a world that worships the masculine, that we have neglected the feminine. The most powerful evidence that sex is important for women is arrived at intuitively.

As women, we play many roles: partners, wives, daughters, bosses, employees, mothers. We deliver, nurture, manage, and please. We are accomplished jugglers, master manifestors; we make things happen. The bi-product of navigating our hyper-connected, multi-tasking lives with poise and grace is the suppression of raw emotion. To perform these many roles effectively, we contain, conform, and control our feelings, our words, our behavior. As a matter of survival we adapt to a culture that values our rational minds. In the process we become alienated from our innate, intuitive nature, often feeling unseen, unappreciated, and misunderstood. When we lose our sense of self in this way, we suffer in our relationships. We get angry; and we shut down. Our confidence takes a hit, along with our self-esteem, self-care, and our precious sex lives—the very thing that should be our source of power.

We can measure hormones and proteins in our bodies in connection with sexual activity, but what is even more powerful is the energetic, psychological, and spiritual benefits of sex as a form of creative self-expression.

There is a fire that burns inside each one of us. It is the flame of passion, of desire. It glows, it roars, it’s wild in nature. It is our birthright. This fire is our feminine essence. It is the stuff that is uniquely ours, that gives us eyes in the back of our heads, that makes our hearts twinge when a loved one thousands of miles away is hurting, it’s our spidey sense, the way we can heal with a hug, our ability to feel when a decision is the right one.

When we step away from our contained, controlled lives, and soften into the expansive formlessness of sexual arousal, we create a space for the feminine to rise; we stoke the fire. Passion is a necessary nutrient, desire, an essential ingredient. To pretend otherwise is to deny ourselves—and the world—a vital part of who we are, and how we can serve. Whether we are in the kitchen, the boardroom, the yoga studio, or the bedroom, our practiced access to our feminine fire is a source of vitality for ourselves, and in turn for our families, communities, and organizations.

So if you feel like the only reason to have sex is out of obligation to your partner, consider this: It’s not about getting someone else off, it’s about turning ourselves on, so that we can light up the world.

PS:It might be helpful to know, self-pleasuring counts!

On Being Unstoppable

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Last week, I visited the webpage of a coaching school someone I know is considering. On the school’s homepage, a graduate of the program boasted that the school’s methodology had enabled her to teach her clients to be “unstoppable.” And that stopped me, right in my tracks.

The nature of being human is that we are eminently stoppable. Our very biology gives us natural limits to how hard we can push. We need to breathe, to drink, eat, and sleep. We crave touch, the sun, fresh air, and communication. Our bodies are covered in a soft flesh–relatively defenseless with no claws or sharp teeth. We bleed and heal. Our reproductive cycle gives us utterly helpless young, demanding that we stop and take notice and care for these vulnerable creatures. And, of course, we die–the ultimate full stop. Death comes for us all with no regard for how hard we try to push it back. To be human is to be stoppable.

And yet we seek to be unstoppable.

Life should be able to stop us. If not for beauty, then for heartbreak. If not for the joy of seeing a tree’s stark branches waving against a gray winter sky, then for the horror of seeing people starving to death in our own rich cities or drowning to death on the shores of Europe. If not for the pleasure of a beloved piece of music, then for the despair of another mass shooting. If not for the happiness on face of a dear friend or family member, then for the agony present  when they suffer or when we let them down. Let life be present to us. Let it stop us.

To be unstoppable is to be blind to what is happening all around us. To be unstoppable is to refuse to notice the effect that progress–at any cost–might have on our relationships, our bodies, and our spiritual life. To be unstoppable is to deny our own biology. To deny our hearts and the beautiful web of relationships that surround us.

Sometimes the world demands a response. And sometimes the only response is to pause. To be stricken. To be soft. To take a moment to laugh, or to cry, or to hold someone’s hand. A moment of noticing how angry we are, or how sad, or how–this is the really hard one–how numb we’ve become.  And cultivating the ability to be stopped takes deep work.

It requires relational sensitivity to know when our families, colleagues, and friends need us to downshift and approach them in a new, more attentive way. It requires somatic wisdom to be able to sense our energy status and get a clear reading on what our bodies need. It takes emotional awareness to stay present in strong emotions while also noticing the emotional states of others. And, finally, the ability to stop often takes great bravery as it will likely be questioned by those who would not dare question the cultural value of being unstoppable.

In my coaching practice, I do not seek to teach clients to be unstoppable because I believe it is deeply problematic, even dangerous. What happens when you teach your client to be unstoppable, and their family and friends need them to stop because they have been neglecting their relational responsibilities? What happens when you have an entire culture of unstoppable people, and the culture next door needs them to stop because they are encroaching on ancestral lands? What happens when you have an entire planet of unstoppable people, and the environment is begging them to stop because species are going extinct and the land is being polluted?

Can you see where being unstoppable can lead? Do you see where it has already led?

Instead, I believe that we must learn to listen to the call of the world, our loved ones, and our bodies, to stop. In the coaching relationship, the relationship of mutual trust and mutual respect creates a strong container where clients can examine the habitual responses they have always relied on. Over time, they becomes more able to recognize the habitual turning away that has become so pandemic in modern society. They learn to cultivate a new response. This takes the learning of new skills and competencies; patience, compassion, resilience, discernment, the ability to self-observe (to name a few). I’ve seen clients, over time, become more resilient and able to stand in deep witness to their own emotional experience; to be stopped by the world, to be touched by it. They have the freedom to experience their reaction without being overwhelmed by it. This allows them the opportunity to make choices that they were unable to make before.

Today, let a small part of yourself be broken by this heartbreaking and fragile world. What might it mean to open yourself up enough for that to occur? What meaning might leak into your life if you dared? Stop, and and you might find out.



Jessica Minah is the Director of Enrollment and a Graduate of New Ventures West. Jessica’s presence, curiosity and wisdom—not to mention her previous experience as an award-winning radio producer and sales account manager—make her a natural fit for the role of guiding would-be coaches into the fold. She was certified as an Integral Coach® in 2014 and works with clients around the US. She lives in Baltimore with her husband Greg and brightens our San Francisco headquarters with her regular visits.

Women Powering Change – July 14th in Denver

Ready for another inspirational dose of feminine leadership? Join us at Women Powering Change, July 14th at Mile High Station in Denver.

Women Powering Change accelerates the social impact of women creating a just world. July’s event will be an energetic and informative gathering of diverse nonprofits, innovative leaders, passionate philanthropists, and aspiring activists.

Watch the video from last year’s event here:

Plus, Emerging Women will be hosting four free workshops that you won’t want to miss.

Learn more about the Women’s Foundation of Colorado and register for Women Powering Change HERE. We’ll see you at Mile High Station next Thursday!

Azure Antoinette: Pulse

What a gift to be in the presence of an artist who can put the weight of our collective sadness, shame, hope and love into words for us, so that we may both process the trauma and do everything in our personal power to make the world a more empathetic place for those who are bravely living the truth of who they are.

At Emerging Women’s Power Night Boulder, in support of Emerging Women Live, Azure Antoinette screened a video that left no room for doubt why she’s been dubbed “the Maya Angelou of the Millennial Generation.”

Her deep compassion for those affected as a result of the senseless violence at Pulse Nightclub on 6/11/16, a tragedy that left the nation stunned, resonated through the hall with the power that only poetry can.

Azure Antoinette is a luminous example of how vulnerability, courage and open-hearted honesty not only elevates the self, but everyone we touch. Thank you, Azure, for being a part of Emerging Women.


A Room of One’s Own: Why we need sacred spaces in order to create.

A few months ago, we had a feng shui master and his wife over for dinner. His wife and I were talking about our creative writing ventures and, when the master overheard, he chimed in with the simple question, “Where is your writing space? I love to see creative spaces.” I stuttered around an answer. The kitchen counter after the kids are asleep? A stolen afternoon at a coffee shop with thirty other coffee drinkers? The lobby of the rec center while my kids swim?

His look bored into my soul. He said, “Your writing will never take you seriously if you don’t have a sacred space to create in.” In that moment I realized what he was saying was true, but that actually doing something about it felt inconvenient.

“Your writing will never take you seriously if you don’t have a sacred space to create in.”

So I’ve been thinking about it: Does inspiration really squeeze in beside you if she has to contend with the sea of laptops and fancy coffee drinks, table to table with other aspiring creatives? Whether you are seeking to create a poem, a killer investor pitch or high tech breakthrough, if you want to invite inspiration to come visit you need a place for her to sit down. You need a “room of one’s own”, à la Virginia Woolf.

How many of us read A Room of One’s Own in high school or college and said to ourselves, “Right on, sister!” Her small book declares that women need space to tap into their creative power. Like me, you probably thought that when you grew up, you’d insist on the room. It would be a non-negotiable. But as our adult living situation becomes a reality, we concede the space to the distractions around us.

Some never conceded, like my friend and entrepreneur, Renee Israel. Renee is an entrepreneur and cofounder, with her husband Rob, of Doc Popcorn. They both work out of the home and they both have private home offices. When most people were remodeling by tearing down walls for larger living areas, Renee knew that she needed that wall. She insisted on articulated boundaries versus the larger communal space. And with that came intellectual freedom.

I am lucky enough to have an “office” that is shared with my husband, but stacks of to-do’s cover the space: brochures for potential summer camps, permission slips, bills, catalogs and then there’s Will’s desk, which is even more chaotic. When he is sitting at his computer, we chit chat and share, and we interrupt with things like, “Hey, is next Thursday a good day to get the furnace serviced?” My son walks in without a knock to ask if he can have a turn holding the bunny. The humdrum and the wonder have a hard time cohabitating at times. Busy work is worlds away from generative thinking. My office is a place to orchestrate the responsibilities, not the whisperings of my soul.

“My office is a place to orchestrate the responsibilities, not the whisperings of my soul.”

Lately, I’ve been eyeing the potting shed in the back yard. It’s full of straw, torn slip n’ slides, stacked pots, a wasp nest and a weed whacker. All of the that can find another home, I realize. So what is really standing between me and a room of my own? Maybe it’s my own self-doubt, or the fear of taking up space, but I’m getting over that. I may not write the next bestseller, but I just will have more than half an hour without an interruption to my thoughts – that sounds just as delightful. There would be nothing worldly in there, just a writing surface, some cool tchotchkes and creative quotations pinned to the wall. And ventilation. That’s it – all my room needs.

I like to think of it this way: HGTV is full of shows on creating the dream man-cave, but what would a woman-cave look like? Even if the best room of your own you can create is the kitchen counter after the kids are asleep – go for it. Find a talisman, light a candle and tell the others to stay away because inspiration needs a signal for the all-clear. Demand it. Do it for Virginia Woolf and the women who fought for the right. Because when we take up space, we take ourselves and our aspirations seriously. And so do those around us.

Show us your “rooms,” ladies. How do you take up space?


annike Annika Paradise is a freelance writer living in Boulder, Colorado.  Her writing has appeared in Brain Child Magazine as well as various blogs.  She is currently working on an historical fiction novel that takes place during the women’s suffrage movement in Colorado’s mining towns.

Power Practice #14: Letting Go – A Meditation on Surrender

Tosha Silver Letting Go

Are you feeling stressed out, rushed, or overwhelmed?

This very simple practice has become a staple for the Emerging Women team. As Tosha Silver says, in this testosterone-driven culture it’s so important for us to let go of struggle and let the Inner Divine take the lead. That way we can operate not from a place of aggression, ego, or even passivity, but with an openness and receptivity that is felt deeply within the body.

You can do this quick and relaxing practice several times a day to shift into a calming, healing mindset. Get ready to move with the flow and enjoy the synchronicity and magic that results!

Play Power Practice #14 – Letting Go – A Meditation on Surrender:

Tosha Silver graduated from Yale with a degree in English Literature but along the way fell madly in love with yogic philosophy. For the past 30 years she has taught people around the world ways to align with Inner Love. She’s the author of Outrageous Openness and the recently released Change Me Prayers: The Hidden Power of Spiritual Surrender. She lives near San Francisco, where she runs an online school about these ideas called, “Living Outrageous Openness: Think Like a Goddess”. This offers an ongoing way to support those who truly want to live these beautiful, ancient practices. You can also join her on Facebook by liking her author page where she writes a few times a week.

She particularly enjoys finding fresh, funny ways to invite and embrace the Divine, while avoiding conventional jargon and cliches at all cost. She loves how the sacred and the mundane are truly One. The guidance from the Inner Divine begins to lead when it is sincerely invited….by anyone.

Check out our Emerging Women podcast with Tosha Silver to hear more:
tosha_silver

Looking for guidance? Dive in to the Divine.

Dear Emerging Women,

As long as I can remember I have wanted to be “psychic.” As a young girl I’d squeeze my eyes shut and beg for a sign, a flicker of communication from a higher power to help me navigate all the unknowns, a life raft of certainty when the waters got murky.

I still yearn for the comfort that comes from knowing that an All-Powerful Force has my back. The difference is that now I try to keep my eyes open – leaning into the world, looking for miracles, love taps and gentle whispers that show up as synchronicities, timely opportunities or the right person at the right time.

girl

Life around me is constantly reaching out trying to get my attention, and the more I can open up to this, the more “held” I feel.

This hidden but felt guidance becomes reliable and consistent – to the point that I am able to accept all in my life as purposeful and intentional.
In this state of receptivity I have been able to move through some very challenging times as an entrepreneur. I feel like an Aikido master in a beautiful dance with the Divine, embracing, not fighting, all that comes my way.

This is why I love Tosha Silver. She points out that when we do this kind of work all the time, everyday life becomes OUTRAGEOUS. We are able to trust the guidance and just enjoy the extraordinary ride that is life.

Sure, I may still revert and try to claw my way through tricky spots when I am not on top of my game – but I am quickly learning that the shortest route to making anything happen in this world is through relationship to spirit.

Are you dialed in to your Divine guidance? I want to hear about it! Check out our Outrageous Openness Grace & Fire podcast with Tosha Silver and share your story in the comments.

chantal_circle

Big Love,


Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

Emerging Women Power Night – June 22, 2016

Emerging Women Power Night

Power Night Boulder will explore the dimensions of living the truth of who we are through feminine power. You will experience real connection, intentional circles, speakers, book signings, live poetry and groove.

The line-up for this event is awesomely inspirational – featuring Tami Simon, Nancy Levin, Azure Antoinette, Lisa Wimberger, Kim Coupounas, Leslie Herod and Colleen Abdoulah — all successful visionary leaders, entrepreneurs, executives and creatives who are trailblazing a new way of influencing positive change in the world.

Expect personal stories of what fuels these women and how they were able to achieve uncompromising success by living the truth of who they are.

  • WHEN: June 22, 2016 TIME: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
  • WHERE: eTOWN HALL / 1535 Spruce Street / Boulder, CO 80302
  • FEATURING: Tami Simon, Azure Antoinette, Nancy Levin, Lisa Wimberger, Kim Coupounas, Leslie Herod, Colleen Abdoulah and Chantal Pierrat
  • REGISTRATION LINK HERE
  • COST: 
    • $45 Networking Reception plus General Admission (includes a networking reception before the main event – enjoy light appetizers and drinks with display tables from local sponsors)
    • OR $35 General Admission Only

Networking Reception Starts: 5:00pm

General Admission Doors Open: 5:30pm

General Admission Event Start: 6:00pm

Event End: 9:00pm

Check out an Emerging Women Power Night from San Francisco:

Speakers

simon_t__c_stephen_collector_08Tami Simon is the founder of Sounds True, a multimedia publishing company dedicated to disseminating spiritual wisdom. Based in Boulder, Colorado, Sounds True has published more than 800 audio, video, music, and book titles along with online courses and events. Sounds True is widely recognized as a pioneer in providing life-changing, practical tools that accelerate spiritual awakening and personal transformation. As a pioneer in the conscious business movement, Tami focuses on bringing authenticity and heart into the workplace while honoring multiple bottom lines. Tami hosts a popular weekly podcast called Insights at the Edge, where she has interviewed many of today’s leading teachers, delving deeply into their discoveries and personal experiences on their own journeys. With Sounds True, she has released the audio program Being True: What Matters Most in Work, Life, and Love.

Called “the Maya Angelou of the Millennial generation,” Azure Antoinette is a poet, brand humanist and creative strategist. Antoinette coined herself as a Commissioned Poet in 2008 and was firmly committed to finding a way to live out her mantra of “Do What You Love & Love What You Do.” In her crusade to be authentically committed to her medium of poetry, she has forged creative partnerships with dozens of Fortune 500 companies, worldwide brands, and national organizations by using her unique talent to curate and custom write the story of a brand.

Nancy Levin Nancy Levin is the bestselling author of Jump … And Your Life Will Appear, Writing For My Life, and the forthcoming Worthy: Boost Your Self-Worth to Grow Your Net Worth (Hay House, August 2016.) She’s a Certified Master Integrative Life Coach and the creator of the Jump Coaching and Worthy Coaching Programs, working with clients – privately and in groups – to live in alignment with their own truth and desires. She was the Event Director at Hay House for 12 years and hosts her own weekly call-in show Jump Start Your Life on Hay House Radio. Nancy received her MFA in Creative Writing and Poetics from Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado and she continues to live in the Rocky Mountains.

Lisa Wimberger is the founder of the Neurosculpting® Institute. She holds a Masters Degree in Education from the University of Stonybrook, NY, a Foundations Certification in NeuroLeadership and a certificate in Medical Neuroscience. She is the author of NEW BELIEFS, NEW BRAIN: Free Yourself from Stress and Fear, and NEUROSCULPTING: A Whole-Brain Approach to Heal Trauma, Rewrite Limiting Beliefs, and Find Wholeness. As the Founder of the Neurosculpting® modality Lisa runs a private meditation practice in Colorado teaching clients who suffer from stress disorders, and she is a faculty member of Kripalu Yoga and Meditation Center, Omega Institute, and the Law Enforcement Survival Institute.

Panel 

Move the People: Changing the World through Connected Leadership

Kim Kim Coupounas serves as a Director of B Lab, a nonprofit organization that certifies “B Corporations” and serves a global movement of people using business as a force for good. Prior to B Lab, Kim co-founded and served as CEO and Chief Sustainability Officer of GoLite, a global mission-driven outdoor apparel and equipment company. She currently serves on the Harvard Business School Alumni Board, the boards of the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado, the Center for Social Responsibility at the Leeds School of Business, and as a Mentor/Advisor for the Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network, the Unreasonable Institute, Boomtown, and numerous other startup accelerators and incubators.  She earned an A.B. Cum Laude in Philosophy from Princeton University, an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School and an M.P.A. from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Among her deep passions are spending time with her family, trail running, hiking, singing, doing yoga and martial arts, drinking great wine and climbing big mountains.

Colleen Abdoulah Colleen Abdoulah, who was the only female CEO to lead a top-ten cable operating company, is widely respected for her passionate focus on customer experience and company culture. Colleen guided WOW! Internet, Cable and Phone for 12 years, overseeing industry-leading financial success and creating unprecedented value for employees and shareholders. During her tenure, WOW! quadrupled the customer base served, from 200,000+ to more than 800,000 with revenues of over $1.2B. Under Colleen’s leadership, WOW! earned a remarkable 19 J.D. Power and Associates awards for customer satisfaction, multiple top-provider awards from Consumer Reports, and the PC Magazine Readers’ Choice Award for top cable Internet service provider. She is equally proud of the many awards WOW! received as an employer, including recognition as a 2012 and 2013 National Best and Brightest Companies to Work For winner.


Leslie Herod is the progressive candidate running for State House of Representatives District 8. She is passionate about making a difference in the community through advocacy and civic engagement. Raised by a single mother who was an officer in the Army Nurse Corps, she learned the importance of discipline, hard work and commitment to public service. After more than 10 years of experience working with local and state legislators, Leslie currently owns her own small business that focuses on strengthening community relationships. Leslie is a community champion who will proactively address our disparities in our education system, reforming our criminal justice system and tackling affordable housing challenges within the state.

Chantal PierratChantal Pierrat‘s passion is to empower women through feminine leadership. In September 2012, she founded Emerging Women and Emerging Women Live in order to support the integration of consciousness and business. Chantal’s ultimate vision is to weave feminine leadership and authenticity into businesses. When she is not dancing or working, Chantal enjoys family time with her husband and two sons in Boulder, CO.

Thank You to Our Sponsors power_night_sponsors

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to:

Emerging Women exists to support and inspire women to express themselves authentically through the work that they do. We strive to provide the tools, knowledge, and network to help women lead, start and grow their businesses in a way that integrates core feminine values like connection, collaboration, intimacy, beauty and heart. We provide a platform for leaders and entrepreneurs to come together to explore and express their inner truths. It is our ultimate desire that women have a strong voice in the shaping of our world’s future. Join us for our 4th annual Emerging Women Live event October 13-16, 2016 in San Francisco, CA.

Power Practice #13: Motivating with Self-Compassion

Kristin Neff Motivating with Self Compassion
Do you rely on self-criticism to get you moving?

This written exercise from self-compassion expert Dr. Kristen Neff is designed to help you shift your motivational focus from self-criticism to the more energizing benefits of self-compassion.

Press play to get in touch with what your inner critic might be trying to accomplish for you, and then let Kristen guide you towards meeting that same need with a kinder, more compassionate voice. Hands on hearts, people – self-compassion is the way through!

Play Power Practice #13 – Motivating with Self-Compassion:

kristin neff During Kristin’s last year of graduate school in 1997 she became interested in Buddhism, and has been practicing meditation in the Insight Meditation tradition ever since. While doing her post-doctoral work she decided to conduct research on self-compassion – a central construct in Buddhist psychology and one that had not yet been examined empirically.

In addition to her pioneering research into self-compassion, she has developed an 8-week program to teach self-compassion skills. The program, co-created with her colleague Chris Germer, affiliated with Harvard Medical School, is called Mindful Self-Compassion. Her book, Self-Compassion, was published by William Morrow in April, 2011.

Check out our Emerging Women podcast with Dr. Kristen Neff to hear more:

Proud to support WITI’s 2016 Annual Summit

We know you love it when women get together to create community and share resources. We do, too, and that’s why we’ve partnered with WITI in support of their Women in Technology Summit, June 5-7, 2016 in San Jose, CA.


WITI’s 2016 Annual Summit is shaping up to be the biggest and boldest ever – brimming with insights, tools, techniques, and opportunities to advance you and your company to ever-greater levels of productivity and success.

Join smart and savvy professional women in this unique opportunity to meet with some of today’s biggest technology companies and women led start-ups. Business and thought leaders are coming from all over the nation to lead hands on workshops, presentations and dynamic panel discussions about cutting edge trends. The companies participating in the Expo and Career Fair are dedicated to the development of powerful women leaders as well as increasing and strengthening businesses started by women.

To learn more about WITI’s Women in Technology Summit, click HERE.

Empowering our Girls in the Coming of Age

It was the dawn of a new chapter in the life of someone I love dearly, my oldest daughter Katherine. She was turning twelve years old and I knew deep within my being that I wanted to help ignite the next part of her journey as she transitioned from girl to young woman with beautiful lessons and ancient truths told from women around the world.

Echoing deep within me were the words of the African spiritual teacher Sobonfu Somé:

“A woman’s medicine is another woman.”

Since the beginning of time, we have symbolized various life passages for girls and boys with the markings of ceremony, celebration, ritual and community. I want these same gifts for Katherine in her own way. From the metaphoric Red Tent, to Quinceañeras and Sweet Sixteen parties, to spiritual and religious ceremonies, we all have our own native ways to honor various coming of age traditions.I wanted to recognize our traditions, yet I also wanted to sprinkle in something else…

I wanted Katherine to experience the broader context of her own becoming.I wanted her to see the next evolution of herself from trailblazing women role models who share their stories, their dreams and their invaluable lessons learned.I wanted to help inspire her own truth that is beginning to take shape within her.

Not too long after these inklings, I received a message from Emerging Women thatJane Goodall was going to be the keynote speaker at their upcoming conference in San Francisco.Stop, breathe, synchronicity.The Jane Goodall… the one that Katherine has admired from an early age with sweet book reports to boot?I quickly called my husband and within minutes we had our plan.

No, this would certainly not be the Red Tent.But it would be our own unique way to start the conversation. We would blend multiple traditions into our very own, and it would be rooted in the powerful wisdom of the words of Joseph Campbell:

“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.”

I sat down and wrote Katherine’s twelfth birthday letter.While the strokes of the keys came from my fingers, they were equally infused with the love and mutual support of my husband who adores and cherishes the young woman in our daughter.

Dearest Katherine,

We want you to know that you have every tool that you will ever need inside of you.The heart is the seat of your soul.It is the strongest voice you will ever hear.Listen to its precious whispers and it will always guide you home to the truth about your next step on your path. 

We want you to know that in the peaks and valleys of life, the ups and downs, the ebb and the flow, that self-compassion and self-love will be your greatest friend. 

We want you to know that you are an extraordinary young woman and your light shines so bright in this world.We are humbled and grateful to share this path with you, and as your parents, we will always, always, always love, support and honor you as your own unique person.

When you were in the fourth grade, you did a report on Jane Goodall because she inspired a calling that was already brewing inside of you – a love for animals and a voice for those who do not have one. So, for your birthday, you and I are going to take a sojourn to San Francisco and you will get to see Jane Goodall LIVE.Our special birthday wish for you as you embark on this next chapter in your life, is that you always live a life inspired by what moves you the most.Touch this place inside and you will live a life of authenticity and deep human fulfillment. 

With incredible love, empowerment and inspiration for you,

Mom and Dad

What started as a seedling in my awareness manifested into a truly transformational weekend with my daughter.We laughed, we cried, we danced, we played, we talked, we ate amazing food, we rode the trolley and we paid a visit to the magnificent redwoods.Most significant of all, we shared the collective umbrella of connectedness among a group of women who care deeply about bringing who they are to the table to help change our world.

There is a powerful exchange in the mere presence of people like Dr. Goodall. In Katherine’s own words: “Her presence was incredible, I could feel it from 5 rows away.Seeing her in person brought a lot of real to the situation.She sparked something in me to keep doing what I am doing, thinking what I am thinking.I look at her and think; she is one of my people, she speaks my language, she understands.”
These moments help define who we are. I asked her to share what she would tell other parents about this particular phase of her life, and she offered that “this stage of development is most crucial besides babyhood, and it is great to be embraced by people who are making change and good in the world.These are the women that I want to fan girl over.”I couldn’t agree more!

“These are the women that I want to fan girl over.”

As parents we sprinkle the very soil of our families with our own nutrients, our own fertilization, and the traditions that resonate with us.As we do so, we watch our children rise from this ground into their own becoming.

On the eve of our last day together, I watched Katherine stroll down a path in a cathedral of redwoods with lightheartedness and gratitude.I could not help but to think of these amazing trees, their incredible roots and the community of this majestic redwood grove.I reflect to my own grove, the roots who supported me into my own becoming and now who support Katherine.

We are standing on the shoulders of our mothers, and our grandmothers and with much reverence, and my daughter is standing on mine.

Is your good customer service weakening your brand?

customerSurely you’ve heard the clichés: The customer is always right. Give the client what they want. Just do what you need to do to make them happy. If all else fails, give them their money back.

But when have clichés ever been a source of wisdom for building relationships with the people who matter most?

They offer no guidance in the often-messy reality of responding to customers’ needs and wants. It’s not for the faint of heart. Anyone who’s been in business long enough will know immediately what we mean: someone comes to you with a complaint, or a critical question, or a request that you change your policy just this once, as a favor, because it’s the “right” thing to do.

When you’re sitting at the computer with a knot in your stomach, you might acquiesce and just make the problem go away. In the painful moments it may be easier to defy your intuition and good sense than to speak an uncomfortable truth or hold a contested boundary. This is especially tempting when you mistakenly believe that the goal of customer service is to make people happy.

But here’s the truth: “good customer service” doesn’t mean putting your needs second. In fact, a more seasoned, intuitive, and courageous approach to customer service may just get your clients what they need instead of what they want.

In thinking creatively and in your willingness to speak a harder truth when necessary, you may serve customers in ways that they’ve never imagined, which have little to do with the product or service you’re selling. That’s what’s possible here. And in that capacity, you build your brand value along with your contribution to the world.

Most of us don’t even realize the ways we undermine ourselves. So here are the top 5 ways businesses unintentionally weaken their brand:

1. Falling on your sword to make the customer right.

We’ve all heard it before, but it’s just not true. Customers are human, and as such, they are funny, silly, forgetful, emotional and prone to make mistakes – just like us. They are also compassionate, caring, full of grace and forgiveness – you know, the good stuff – and we wouldn’t want it any other way. There’s no need for the blame game with your clients or customers, but there’s no need for you or your brand take the hit to stroke their ego.

Case in point: we were recently consulting with a client on creating some friendly scripts for failed subscription payments. They wanted their message to be kind and free from shaming language. (Yes, yes, yes, we couldn’t agree more.) However, the current model that they wanted to keep stated, We’re sorry, your payment has failed; perhaps something is wrong with our system (it happens), please try again or use a new payment method.

Do you see what’s happening here? This approach presumes shame on the customer’s part and assumes the blame. But look, failed payments happen. They’re nothing to be embarrassed about. They aren’t a sign of financial insolvency or an indication of personal irresponsibility. More often than not, a failed payment is the result of an expired or stolen credit card. There was no need to preemptively diminish the company’s payment system or apologize for the customer’s own oversight. Neither approach establishes trust in your brand and, worse, the former makes a valid case for customers not using your system in the future.

So keep it simple, stick to the facts, and be positive: Hi there, it looks like we are unable to charge the card we have on file for you. This generally happens when the card expires or some information changes. Here’s a secure link to update your payment information. We appreciate you working with us to get this matter resolved. Thanks!

2. Apologizing for things outside of your control.

Along the same lines, apologizing for things outside of your control sends the message that your business isn’t firmly on top of its moving parts. So one of your emails went to spam, and a client missed an important deadline. Or a customer didn’t receive an autoresponder that was delivering paid-course content. These things happen as a normal part of doing business in the virtual world. Instead of an apology, extend understanding (“Well that’s frustrating, isn’t it?”) and immediately move to a solution. (“We’ve got you covered, we just sent that email again.”)

This holds true even if the response you’re crafting is a troubleshooting email or a response to a complaint. All too often “I’m sorry” is said reflexively, without much thought, as a way to avoid further accountability for a situation. It also weakens your brand. There are more precise and productive ways to express that mayyybe you messed up. (You mess up? Nah.)

If you feel sorry, express empathy, and then write with a focus on solutions, from a spirit of assumed, collaborative solution-finding (i.e., “Let’s see what we can do.”).

3. Taking complaints personally.

Complaints frequently feel personal, because your work is woven through with your efforts, your aspirations, your desire to serve. In short, your work is personal because you’ve put yourself on the line. But the truth about client communications is that when it gets tough or goes sour it is RARELY about you (though it feels that way) and is NEVER personal, even if you made a mistake.

Taking things personally takes you out of problem-solving mode and puts you into a defensive, deflecting state of mind. Here again, you don’t need to take responsibility for the things outside of the scope your work, but we all have felt the difference between customer service that takes time to listen and understand our situation, and someone on the other end who is in total deflection-defense mode. The former will win you clients and referrals. The latter will not.

When a customer complains, they’re doing you a favor and giving you the opportunity to fix the situation. If you can get to the root of their problem and arrive at a solution you have a real opportunity to make a happy customer for life.

4. Offering an unhappy customer a refund as a first line of defense.

All too often our clients think they are being kind or delivering the very best in customer service when they immediately offer unhappy customers a refund. But consider this: when you offer a refund to a customer you communicate, “you’re right, our product or service failed you.” Sometimes it comes out of conflict avoidance or simple dismissiveness – a quick fix to avoid having to “deal with them.”

Over and over we see it. A talented, committed business owner whose work gives incredible value to her people will suddenly dissolve into no-questions-asked when someone writes a nasty-gram. (And sometimes it doesn’t even have to be nasty, but there is fear that it could become nasty.)

When we can face the complaints and gnarly moments with poise, even while our heart is racing and our stomach is in knots, we can learn so much. The unhappy customer may teach you something valuable about your target market, what they expect or don’t like, or the ways that what they’ve tried have failed them and how they feel about that. (Yes, there are always needlessly painful moments and folks who are caught up in their own neuroses. But remember that the most difficult cases aren’t fundamentally about you or your work anyway.) So it’s important to appreciate the value of what can be learned in the tough spots, even though it always feels awful in the thick of it, and to respond with grace rather than reacting with fear.

Sometimes when your surprising kindness and graciousness saves the day (because often it will save the day) people are so blown away that they will come back another time.

If you can’t remedy the person’s real complaint or objection and you make a graceful choice to offer money back (an important distinction, by the way: your ability to choose to give a refund from graciousness rather than shame) – that person becomes a brand ambassador rather than a detractor. Your genuine connection with them can shift what they say from “This product or service failed me,” to “That company is great, but I just wasn’t ready for what they were offering.

5. Assuming you have to reinvent the wheel of kindness with every reply.

Writing a kind, personal, unique email each and every time is the ideal, right? It means you and your team are delivering the very best in customer service. Well, not when it slows down the lines of communication or creates yet another unattainable standard of perfection.

Here’s the good news: it is absolutely possible to use a “formula” without writing a formulaic email. There is a middle way between pasting an impersonal blurb and feeling obligated to reinvent the wheel of kindness with every reply.

 This formula is the backbone that supports most of the communications that have come across our desks, because it allows for genuine connection that isn’t onerous or cheesy.

Here’s how it works…
 Use the 7 step non-formula formula:

  • Step 1: Thank them wherever possible.
  • Step 2: Make them feel heard and unique.
  • Step 3: If it’s a troublesome case, consider finding an alternative to saying “I’m sorry.” If you feel sorry, express empathy, and then write with a focus on solutions.
  • Step 4: Now work your particular magic. Move to a solution, recommend a service, etc.
  • Step 5: Outline the next steps involved and/or what’s needed from them.
  • Step 6: Clearly state what you need and make a call to action. Don’t bury this in the paragraph above (the one that’s full of abundant explanations).
  • Step 7: Keep the lines of communication and gratitude open, even as you sign off.

Good customer service simply means that you’ve honored the implicit and explicit agreements between you and the people you are helping. It means that your clients and customers reliably get what you’ve set them up to expect. And in order to provide those things, it’s critical to stand for yourself and your brand with dignity and integrity. When you model that, your brand’s trustworthiness grows, and so does its value. It’s a commitment worth making.

Now tell us: what are the hardest customer service moments for you? When are you most tempted to abandon your policies or to do the “nice” thing at your own expense? What might you do differently if you didn’t think your job was to make people happy?

Nita Apple and Jess Larsen Jukelevics of nitaapple.com are the co-authors of Say It With Grace Toolkit: a Blueprint for Stellar Client Communications. The Toolkit contains email templates and a customer service guide for what to expect, how to say it, and what to do when customer service gets gnarly. Together they provide a custom service called Let Us Say It With Grace and consult with businesses about ways to use customer service to build their brand, engage and retain delighted customers, and empower their support teams to do outstanding work. 

Nita AppleFor Nita Apple customer service was hardcoded into her DNA, as she grew up working in the family store, The Happy Apple. Greeting customers with a warm smile and can-do attitude was the norm, even for a five-year-old. Nita carried that service approach forward throughout her corporate career – whether working as a Human Resource Manager or an Employee Benefit Consultant – her approach was to treat everyone as a customer with a problem solving mindset. Today, Nita calls herself a Customer Service Solution-ist for online businesses. She’s a problem solver by nature, an intuitive innovator, and the founder of the online consulting firm nitaapple.com.

Jess LarsenJess Larsen Jukelevics is the founder of two businesses: a copywriting + virtual support firm and a birth doula + childbirth preparation practice. (You may think online course management and labor support wouldn’t meet in the middle. You’d be surprised.) Jess has a background in public relations, public policy and public health. She brings an instinctive sense about what needs to be communicated, and curiosity about ways that inspired communication can facilitate professional, personal and spiritual growth.

Power Practice #12 – Grounding Meditation

HeatherAsh Amara Meditation

Need to take a moment to anchor yourself in the here and now?

In the busy business of our modern world, the answer to that question is almost always a resounding “Yep.”

There’s a certain irony in the fact that the more we could use a good grounding, the less likely we are to feel like we can summon the calm and focus it takes to do the practice that we need.

This Power Practice is a perfect solution. No need to lead! Just hit play, close your eyes and listen as our soothing sister HeatherAsh Amara leads you in a 10 minute grounding meditation that will leave you feeling refreshed, balanced and centered.

Play Power Practice #12 – Grounding Meditation:

Heather ash AmaraHeatherAsh Amara is the founder of Toci — the Toltec Center of Creative Intent, which fosters local and global community that supports authenticity, awareness, and awakening. She is dedicated to inspiring depth, creativity, and joy by sharing the most potent tools from a variety of world traditions. She brings an openhearted, inclusive worldview to her writings and teachings, which are a rich blend of Toltec wisdom, European shamanism, Buddhism, and Native American ceremony. She is the author of Warrior Goddess Training, The Toltec Path of Transformation and co-author of No Mistakes: How You Can Change Adversity into Abundance. HeatherAsh Amara lives in Austin, Texas and travels extensively around the world, speaking and teaching workshops.

Check out our Emerging Women Grace podcast with HeatherAsh Amara to hear more:

heatherash amara podcast

Janet Mock joins Emerging Women Live 2016!

Janet Mock - Photographer Aaron Tredwell

Fantastic news for the Emerging Women community:

We are ecstatic to announce that Janet MockNew York Times bestselling author, advocate and media host, will be joining us at Emerging Women Live 2016 in San Francisco!

Janet is one of the most influential trans women and millennial leaders in media. TIME called her one of “12 new faces of black leadership” and one of  “the most influential people on the Internet” while Fast Company named her one of 2015’s “most creative people in business.”

When she released Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More in February 2014, feminist critic bell hooks called Janet’s memoir, “A life-map for transformation,” while Melissa Harris-Perry said “Janet does what only great writers of autobiography accomplish—she tells a story of the self, which turns out to be a reflection of all humanity.”

Following the release, Oprah Winfrey interviewed Janet for Super Soul Sunday. Watch one of our favorite video clips to get a sense of Janet’s openness, presence and wisdom:

Now, Janet finds herself on the other side of the story as a Contributing Editor for Marie Claire, a correspondent for Entertainment Tonight and the host of So POPular! — a weekly MSNBC digital series that aims to ensure that the culture that entertains us actually makes us think.

In the video below she describes how we can transform our “guilty pleasures” into access points to talk about larger and broader issues like politics, identity and community, making the show not only “so popular” but SO NECESSARY in this modern world.

We can’t wait to talk with Janet Mock at Emerging Women Live 2016, October 13-16th in San Francisco. Register now to save yourself at seat at this unforgettable event!

Marianne Williamson joins Emerging Women Live 2016

Marianne Williamson

Best news EVER to close out Super Early Bird ticket specials…

We are absolutely thrilled to announce that the one and only Marianne Williamson will be joining us at Emerging Women Live 2016.

Talk about a trailblazing supernova: six of her eleven published books have been New York Times Best Sellers. Four of these have been #1.

Perhaps you’ve memorized the mega best seller A Return to Love – considered a must-read of The New Spirituality. A paragraph from that book, beginning “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure…” has become an anthem for a contemporary generation of seekers.

Continue reading “Marianne Williamson joins Emerging Women Live 2016”

Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code Joins Emerging Women Live 2016

Saujani_Reshma_PROMOPICA true political entrepreneur, Reshma Saujani has been fearless in her efforts to disrupt both politics and technology to create positive change. Yesterday she was named one of Fortune’s World’s 50 Greatest Leaders, and today we are so excited to name her as a Keynote Speaker at the one-and-only Emerging Women Live 2016.

Reshma is the founder and CEO of Girls Who Code, a national non-profit organization working to close the gender gap in technology and prepare young women for jobs of the future.

Started in 2012, the organization will reach more than 40,000 girls in every state by the end of 2016. This year, Girls Who Code will run 78 Summer Immersion Programs and 1500 Clubs. The results speak for themselves: 90 percent of alumnae have declared or intend to declare a major or minor in computer science.

The effectiveness of her organization is evident in testimonials from the young students: “I’m capable of doing things I never thought I could do. I’m motivated to start my own company. I want to make a difference in my community.” — Diana, 16

In her groundbreaking book, Women Who Don’t Wait in Line, Reshma advocates for a new model of female leadership focused on embracing risk and failure, promoting mentorship and sponsorship and boldly charting your own course, both personally and professionally.

Continue reading “Reshma Saujani of Girls Who Code Joins Emerging Women Live 2016”

Elle Luna joins Emerging Women Live 2016!

We are excited to announce that artist, author and Silicon Valley startup survivor Elle Luna will be joining the lineup as a Keynote Speaker at Emerging Women Live 2016!

Elle Luna happily makes art in her very special studio in San Francisco (listen to her Grace & Fire podcast to hear about that peak experience in her life). But that wasn’t always her gig.

Before, Elle was nailing the shoulds. She worked with teams to design and build Mailbox’s iPhone app, redesign Uber’s iPhone app, and scale the storytelling platform, Medium. But in the midst of this life of business and chronic busy-ness, she felt the pull of something deeper calling to her in her dreams – the musts.

With one foot in each world (art and startup), everything was suffering. She wasn’t really feeling her creative process, and her work in Silicon Valley was exhausting her. Her head was saying “you got this” while her body was screaming for a vacation – and not just a week at the beach. She was craving the deep peace of a restful mind. She was at a crossroads.

She had enough in her bank account for a window of time to “not know” and just journey down the roads of should and must. She left her job in Silicon Valley and rented the dreamy studio in San Francisco, the dedicated physical space where must had a chance of being heard. And it worked.

On April 8, 2013, Elle published an essay on Medium.com, “The Crossroads of Should and Must,” which quickly went viral. Within weeks, it was tweeted to over 5 million people and seen by over a quarter of a million readers. Elle extended that post into an illustrated, four color book, The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion, where she explains the importance of mistakes, of “unlearning,” of solitude, of keeping moving and of following a soul path. She had taken a leap, and it resonated.

 

It’s not just a one-time decision, she learned. It’s a daily thing. Shoulds are decisions for anything or anyone other than yourself, put on you from outside from family, community or culture. When you hear or think a should, you shrink in your body. Huge systems of thought are at work that feel overwhelming. She keeps a list of shoulds in her journal because she says that continuing to bring them into awareness is what releases their hold on your life.

To really get the juices flowing, you’ve got to have your finger on the pulse of must. Must is pre-thought. It’s inexplicable and undeniable. She says that staying in touch with that force is crucial. It’s “the source of our being – it’s the song, and we have to keep that song alive” by opening our eyes to “little mirrors, little clues that lead you back to something essential.”

Should, she says, is like cracking an egg on the countertop to get what’s inside out. Must is letting it burst out from the inside, and what results are the greater potentialities of your life. And the most important step? “To trust that that will manifest over time.”

We hope that you will join us in San Francisco to hear the inspirational Elle Luna share her insight with us at Emerging Women Live 2016. We can’t wait to see what will burst from your egg!

Listen to the Grace & Fire podcast here:

Elle Luna Podcast

We’re Not Waiting 117 Years – Inspiration for International Women’s Day

The World Economic Forum predicts it will take until 2133 to achieve gender parity.

Wait… what? The year 2133? That’s 117 years from now, people. Do we really want to wait four generations to achieve what we know will be a world-shifting balance? NO.

This isn’t just about supporting equal pay for women (although it definitely includes that). This year’s campaigns for gender parity make it clear that businesses must harness female talent to really succeed and thrive.

Studies show that organizations most inclusive of women in top management perform up to 35% better than their peers. This study finds that an organization with 30 percent female leaders could add up to 6 percentage points to its net margin.

The bigger picture, then, is to value women equally as leaders – to bring balance to pay grade, yes, but also to respect and value women’s unique talents in the business, economic and political world. In this way we not only ensure that women are able to rise to positions of power, we also encourage men to incorporate more feminine leadership traits into their repertoires, resulting in a more prosperous climate for all.

Here’s what you can do to accelerate the movement. Make the Pledge for Parity. Pledge to call for gender-balanced leadership. Pledge to illuminate paths to leadership for girls and women. Pledge to explode both conscious and unconscious bias and to stay open to new points of view, for yourself, your company and the world.

Are you in?

Keep yourself inspired this International Women’s Day with these wise words from passionate leaders who remind us why equality can’t wait 117 years…

“We are here not because we are law-breakers; we are here in our efforts to become law-makers.” – Emmeline Pankhurst

“I myself have never been able to find out precisely what feminism is: I only know that people call me a feminist whenever I express sentiments that differentiate me from a doormat.” – Rebecca West

“No country can ever truly flourish if it stifles the potential of its women and deprives itself of the contributions of half its citizens.” – Michelle Obama

Margaret Mead

“If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse gift will find a fitting place.” – Margaret Mead

 Aung Sang Suu Kyi

“In societies where men are truly confident of their own worth, women are not merely tolerated but valued.” – Aung Sang Suu Kyi

Audre Lorde

“I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own.” – Audre Lorde

sheryl sandberg

“In the future, there will be no female leaders. There will just be leaders.” – Sheryl Sandberg

geraldine ferraro

“We’ve chosen the path to equality, don’t let them turn us around.” – Geraldine Ferraro

virginia woolf

“As a woman I have no country. As a woman I want no country. As a woman my country is the whole world.” – Virginia Woolf

10 Key Words for Mindful Leadership

Women leaders are faced with numerous challenges in their careers. No matter what type of work you do, it can sometimes be difficult to sort through all the “small stuff” that naturally rolls across your desk, while staying focused on the larger goals you want to reach.

We all hope to be mindful leaders in order to cultivate an atmosphere that will inspire us and others. As an independent business owner, I have learned through experience to make sure I include 10 key elements when planning my work day.  This keeps me mindful of my mission, and happy while I work.

Looking

As you set your daily schedule and map out your calendar of dreams, be prepared to meet all your daily challenges by putting these 10 key words into practice:

Focus

Start out your day with quiet time. Take 5 to 10 minutes after you wake up to relax and listen to your inner self. Before you jump into the tasks of the coming day, remember to begin quietly and stay in tune with your inner consciousness. Some people try meditation or yoga, while others just need to relax and be quiet. This is the key to a stress free day.

Organize

Make time to organize. Plan out your schedule in a way that is both realistic and ambitious. Divide your time into larger segments to keep you focused on the big picture. Then divide up those tasks with smaller goals. Keep in mind, your schedule should include flexibility for the unexpected things. Focus on ways to stay organized, and reduce the clutter on your desk. A clean and well organized workspace can help you stay motivated and inspired.

Work

This describes the part of your day where you do what you love, and expect to complete the tasks you start. Think about what you really want to accomplish with your day. Dive in and do what you do best. Have no fear as you take on both expected and unexpected events. Your work should bring you satisfaction more than anything else. Love what you do, and remember to make mental notes of your own efforts and accomplishments. Pat yourself on the back for the things you do well.

Enjoy

Make time every day for small moments of enjoyment. Find the joy in small things. Reward yourself in tiny ways when you reach a small goal. Take a breath from your hard work to unwind, even if only for a few minutes. Carry on with a positive attitude, fueled by self-awareness, generosity and gratitude.  Life is for living, and living means enjoying life. See the value in having some fun throughout your day as you work.

Act

Be bold. Drive yourself forward toward your goals. Be the powerful leader that you are and the confident woman that you have become. Lead. Inspire. Act on your instincts. And most of all, trust yourself to do the things that come naturally to you. Know and apply your talents in the best way you know how. Make your dreams happen. Walk the talk. Don’t hold back.

Connect

Connect to others. Be aware of everyone around you, and build relationships in the way that only you can. Make the connections you need to allow everything you want to accomplish happen. Build your personal (as well as online) connections into a network of people who support you, believe in you and are ready to help you do all the things you want to do. Use your knowledge as power to connect and stay connected.

Exercise

Take time to exercise. This doesn’t have to mean hardcore workouts – just regular exercise. Never skip a day. Take breaks and stretch. Go for short walks. Climb stairs whenever you can. Do what you enjoy doing, such as running, bike riding, doing sit-ups or dancing. Daily exercise is not only one of the most crucial ways to stay healthy, but to improve your energy and brain power. Getting physical is part of the larger picture of taking care of yourself so you can be your best.

Nourish

Even when you are busy, remember to eat healthy. Don’t cut corners when it comes to your own health.  In general, you will feel better if you increase your intake of fruits and vegetables, and stay away from soda, too much caffeine and foods high in sugar. Stick to a healthy diet and avoid overeating. Eat small amounts more often, rather than just 3 large meals. Eating healthy foods that are high in protein will make you feel better and have more energy.

Dream

Make time each day for the important act of dreaming. Try to avoid fixating on every little thing that is racing through your thoughts. Quiet your mind and visualize your loftiest goals coming true. Allow yourself to imagine for a moment the satisfaction of reaching your goals. Dream often and dream big! Don’t hold back on imagining your greatest aspirations. Take time to sit back and dream of what you really want.

Relax

Finding time to relax is majorly important to your brain and physical well being. There are many ways to relax, so find one that works for you. You could relax with your favorite music, turn the lights down low, take a hot bath or sauna or lay on the floor with a towel covering your eyes. Let yourself slow down and enjoy the feeling of releasing any built up stress that can damage your health. Make sure you get enough rest. If you have trouble sleeping, you may need to explore sleep enhancing alternatives. Try meditating, doing yoga, getting a massage or whatever you need to do. Relaxing even for a few minutes periodically during the day will help reduce your stress and keep your energy flowing in a positive direction.

When you include these 10 key words for being a mindful leader in your daily routine, you can have a happier and healthier day which will prepare you for new adventures – leading you closer to realizing all your dreams!


karen>Karen is a free-spirited writer, photographer, and artist from Boise, ID. She loves exploring nature, taking photographs and writing stories about real people who do amazing things. She is the proud mother of 3 wonderful grown children and grandmother of two. She is a risk-taker, adventurer, traveler, sometimes hermit and sometimes social butterfly. She has high aspirations about living her dreams and she believes anything is possible.

7 Habits of Highly Resilient Women

In 2011, George S. Everly, executive director of Resiliency Sciences Institutes at the University of Maryland, was asked, “What’s the difference between those who choose to sink or swim in times of adversity?” He stated two factors:

  1. A lack of perspective stemming from inadequate preparation and tenacity.
  2. A negative attitude.

He further explained that resilience can be taught and self-esteem can be earned through personal accomplishment in the face of a challenge. Resilient women are not brought down by challenges or setbacks; instead they thrive on them because it brings new learnings and new opportunities.

Modeling these 7 habits of resilient women will create tenacity and build your resilience muscle:

1. They have a routine and plan ahead

There’s a formula known as the 2C’s – Commitment and Consistency. Commitment comes from being 100% responsible for any slip-ups, decisions or actions and knowing that you’ll give it all while still being in harmony with oneself. Consistency occurs when you’ve decided to create a daily, weekly or monthly practice that will help you along your journey. Without consistency, commitment can become lost and without commitment, consistency doesn’t follow through. Resilient women become successful by focusing on one or two goals a year and using this formula to achieve their goal.

2. They approach challenges with flexibility

When something doesn’t work, do you tend to give up after the first try and think you’ve failed? When you view a challenge and come up with several different ways to handle it, that demonstrates flexibility. Finding different methods to overcome a challenge keeps a person more in control of the situation. Having only one strategy is inadequate preparation.

3. They embrace failure as a setback and move on

When you focus on your failures, you dwell on the past and the problems you experienced, which in turn, drives the fear of failure even deeper. Resilient women do not view failure as failure; instead they view it as a learned outcome. Why? It has three purposes: First, it stops the fear of failure in its tracks; second, viewing it as learned outcome allows one to analyze the lessons from past experience; and third, putting the lesson to positive use later on leads to the creation of new possibilities and outcomes.

4. They know what they are passionate about and make it their purpose

You can’t have passion without purpose, and you can’t have purpose without passion. Resilient women thrive on their passion and purpose, and never get tired of working on it. Your passion lights the fire in your belly while your purpose helps you channel that passion so you feel fulfilled. A great resource for discovering your passion and life purpose is The Passion Test by Janet and Chris Attwood. Take their free assessment here.

5. They know how to let go

Embracing change and having realistic optimism are a resilient woman’s trademarks because they understand that change is inevitable and what worked today may not work tomorrow. They will let go the old and bring in the new if it becomes necessary for their business or life. Therefore, understanding that life will bring sudden changes and obstacles is the first step, but facing these obstacles and knowing that you have the coping skills to continue moving forward is equally important.

6. They have a strong sense of appreciation while feeling challenged

Resilient women feel overwhelmed and worried too, but they have two streams of thought running through their minds: one is about finding solutions and the other is about all the things they appreciate in life. It’s as though there’s a subconscious REFRAME button they push whenever their thoughts and emotions turn to worry and fear, because after a short time, they’ve perked up and are more positive and appreciative about what they already have.

7. They have excellent communication skills

Think of a leader or manager whom you admire and notice how he or she interacts with you or with others at all levels in the company or when networking. You will notice that she’s listening to your words and your communication style and communicates back in your style. She’s looking for the underlying reason behind your communication so she can relate to you. She’s also subconsciously picking up on your body language and tone of voice and mirrors it. These communication skills come naturally to resilient women because they want to create rapport with you.


Zaheen Nanji is a resilience champion and a business owner in Alberta, Canada.  Embracing change and fear is Zaheen’s trademark because she overcame her speech impediment, her struggles with weight and learned to live in a new country, at the age of 15, without her parents. Her book, The Resilience Reflex – 8 Keys to Transforming Barriers into Success in Life and Business, became an International Best-Seller on Amazon Kindle. Zaheen teaches people how to make resilience their first reflex using her 3-step system: Release, Re-program and Resolve. 

3 Essential Tips for Leaders who want to be Truthtellers

If there’s one thing I know to be true, it’s this: One of the bravest and most important things you can do to be successful in your business and hone your personal leadership style is to own your story, and share it with the world.

Dropping your armor and revealing who you are isn’t easy—but it’s necessary, especially if you are committed to living and leading in an authentic, powerful way.

Sharing our stories gives us the courage to dive headfirst into the truth of who we are, and to take ownership over our lives, our choices, and our unique purpose. More than anything, it lets us know that we are not alone. Our stories validate our core truth and connect us to other people in magical ways.

Sharing this truth sets the groundwork for personal and business relationships that are based in authenticity and acceptance. It ensures that we draw to us exactly the right friends, partners, mentors, team members, clients and customers. It helps us get to the heart of what we stand for and reconnects us to our intrinsic motivation.

As the founder of Women For One—an organization whose mission is to empower women from across the world to share most powerful, life-changing personal stories—I have enormous respect for people who choose to come out from behind closed doors and let other people see the world through their eyes.

In the last five years, I’ve worked with a global community of women who are courageously taking off their masks and baring their hearts and souls to the world. Along the way, I’ve picked up three essential tips for women leaders who wish to tell their story in the most authentic, powerful way possible. I’d love to share them with you.

1. Dive into your shame and secrets.

Most of us have secrets that we’d much rather take to our graves than disclose to anyone else. For close to three decades, I kept one of the biggest secrets of my life: at the age of five, I was sexually abused by my father. It was such a devastating experience that I buried the memory until my early 30s.

Saving face and hiding an experience you’re ashamed of can help you feel safe and in control (at least for a little while), but by doing this, you end up losing more of who you are. You become disconnected from your truth. In fact, when you hide the parts of yourself that are too difficult to face, you also end up hiding the parts of you that are meant to shine brightly.

More often than not, the things we’ve hidden away out of shame or fear hold the keys to our freedom. Counteracting shame doesn’t necessarily mean that you throw all caution to the wind and give other people the nitty-gritty details of your life, however.

All the same, the most powerful leaders are transparent about the experiences that shaped them, and they use these stories to illustrate their success and share the specifics of their breakthroughs with others. By being brave enough to go “where angels fear to tread,” and to drag our shadows into the light, we give ourselves and other people permission to do the same—and to heal in the process.

2. Be YOU.

The best way to share your story isn’t to cover it up with impersonal details or spreadsheets full of statistics that will drive home your point. The greatest gift you can give to your peers and the people your serve is your realness.

When you are open, honest, and vulnerable, you have the power to truly touch others.

Your vulnerability cannot be underestimated in its ability to inspire and mobilize people, move hearts, and change minds. When we offer others a genuine glimpse into how something in our lives affected us, we give them an experience that every single one of us craves: connection with the raw truth of another human being.

Think of the leaders who have deeply touched you. It’s more than likely that they are self-aware and genuine—that they are just as knowledgeable about their limitations as they are of their strengths. They are also consistent, meaning that they don’t put on a mask for the public and act differently in private. They embrace their mistakes as part of their wholeness. More often than not, they are willing to share themselves unabashedly, without covering up the details or glossing over them with the paintbrush of perfection.

“Perfect” is boring. But you in all your real, raw, messy, human glory? That’s the leader people are yearning to see.

3. Remember that we’re all connected.

Above all else, there’s one big reason you’re telling your story. Our stories serve to remind us of one essential truth: we are all connected.

In sharing your story, think of the people who have gone through the same thing and will be affected by your account. Also stop to consider those who have little to no context for what you’ve been through, but who are still capable of being touched and changed by it.

When we share our specific personal stories with other people, we assist in revealing the beautiful diversity of the human experience. We contribute to the gorgeous, intricate tapestry of history (and herstory!). And as leaders, we do one of the most important things we possibly can—we create  and facilitate more connection, dialogue and community from our simple but profound act of self-disclosure.


If you’re ready to dive into the next chapter of your life and to share your story, you might be interested in Women For One’s debut course, Truthteller: A 5-Week Course for Boldly Sharing Your Story. By the end of the course, you will have a brand-new take on the stories that have defined you—and you will be ready to embrace your wholeness, harness your unique voice and leadership style, and show up in your own life in a way that is authentically you. Learn more about Women For One and the Truthteller course HERE.

Anne Lamott joins Emerging Women Live 2016!

More tremendous news on the Emerging Women Live 2016 front!

You know that the Emerging Women community is all about sharing our true selves so that we can shine as the uniquely impactful leaders we are meant to be.

That’s why we’re so excited to announce Anne Lamott as a Keynote Speaker at this year’s national event in San Francisco, CA.

Anne Lamott, author and activist, is a model of compassionate faith, unwavering humor and a voice that tells it like it is, on good days and bad.

As a memoirist and as a non-fiction writer, Anne has a gift for being irreverent and profound at the same time. She is equal parts raw honesty and real hope, with an uncanny ability to glide from heart-wrenching to hilarious without irony or detachment from the core of the matter.

She’s prolific about it, too. She’s written seven novels, several books of non-fiction, and three collections of autobiographical essays. She’s a New York Times bestseller, a prestigious Guggenheim Fellow, a nationwide teacher of her craft, and an inductee of the California Hall of Fame to boot. Rock star!

As Cheryl Strayed mentions in the video below, her work transcends itself. Bird by Bird is as much of a guide to life as it is to writing. Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith resonates with religious and non-religious people alike. We can’t wait to see what she brings to the intimate stage at EWLive16 to inspire and ignite the audience.

To get a glimpse of Anne Lamott’s style, watch as she talks with Cheryl Strayed about shitty first drafts, doubt, vulnerability and the universal impact of sharing your personal story:

We hope you’ll join Anne Lamott, Glennon Doyle Melton, and rest of the amazing Emerging Women community on October 13-16th at Emerging Women Live 2016 in San Francisco. Save your seat now!

How to thrive despite having so much on your plate

Do you find it overwhelming to juggle work, life, relationships, wellness and family responsibilities? You may need review your calendar and reevaluate what’s working and what’s not working so you can implement habits that support you for the long haul. The following are 4 tips that can help you find ultimate work-life balance so you can thrive in your life and in your relationships.

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1. Stop Trying To Do Two Things Simultaneously: Although employers in the U.S. and some abroad praise multitasking, statistically multi-tasking is a less efficient and effective strategy.  First, it sends your stress levels through the roof. And secondly, you are likely to make more mistakes and increase your anxiety level along the way. The key is to develop a one mindfulness skill-set where you focus on one task, stay in the present moment and as a result feel calmer because you are not as easily distracted by alternative tasks that pull you away from the here and now.

2. Take A Personal Inventory Of Your Habits: This is an important first step to evaluate and self-correct habits that are not beneficial for your wellbeing. Do you ever find that you are trying to cram in too many tasks in a limited amount of time? Do you also tend to underestimate the amount of time it takes to complete each task? If so, you probably find that you put a lot of pressure on yourself and set up unrealistic expectations. This leaves you feeling bad as a result. An alternative strategy to increase inner harmony is to increase the amount of time allotted to complete each task and reduce the number of tasks on your to-do list, so you can start setting realistic expectations with clearer, more achievable objectives.

3. Mindfully Increase Your Self-Esteem: By becoming more intimate with yourself and your time you can learn to find your own internal rhythm. The more you become attuned to the sensations and wisdom of your body, the more you can feel intuitively if a choice is uplifting or depleting, expansive or constrictive. By slowing down and giving yourself time, you allow yourself to listen to the voice of truth within and feel empowered to follow your intuition.  

4. Give Yourself Breathing Room: Do you tend to overschedule yourself, leaving little room for spontaneity? By incorporating extra breathing room in your schedule to just relax and decompress, you open up space for mindfulness and self-care to become a priority in your life. Delegating tasks to others, getting support and intentionally creating the life and lifestyle you desire is the key to greater fulfillment and inner peace.

Do these tips make a difference in your sense of balance and wellbeing? Share your voice in the comments section.


Andrea Cairella HeadshotAndrea Cairella is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and owner of True Potential Counseling based in Long Beach, CA.  She works with adults and children and specializes in couples issues, trauma, addiction, anxiety and self-esteem and is the creator of Create A Relationship You Love ™ an online psycho-educational program for couples. If you would like to access my Free 3-Part Video Series visit TruePotentialCounseling.com to: Avoid the 4 Common Mistakes Many Couples Make And Know What To Do Instead, Learn the 8 Strategies To Strengthen Your Emotional And Physical Bond With Your Partner and Improve Communication In 10 Minutes Or Less.

Glennon Doyle Melton Joins Emerging Women Live 2016!

GDM-500-214x300Exciting news! Glennon Doyle Melton, the voice behind Momastery, is joining Emerging Women Live 2016 as a Keynote Speaker.

This woman is all about the LOVE. Self-love through struggles with addiction, family love through all the mess and the magic, and global love through her charitable fundraising. And she lays it bare for the world to see with some seriously inspirational vulnerability on her blog.

Her latest post on the Compassion Collective, which she leads with Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Rob Bell and Cheryl Strayed, outlines how they brought 41,000 people together to raise over $1.3 million dollars to respond to the refugee crisis, which they’ve identified as the worst humanitarian emergency since World War II. And they did this IN ONE DAY.

Her generosity spills over into her book, Carry On, Warrior, where she shares that all of her wisdom, all of her love, originated in the messiest parts of her life. In the video below, she reminds us that when life gets hard, it’s not necessarily a red flag. It might just be a sign that you’re really living.

Have you been inspired by this wonderful warrior? Share your stories with us in the comments.

We hope you’ll join us, along with hundreds of fellow women working to change the world with their heart, vulnerability and compassion, at Emerging Women Live 2016, October 13-16th in San Francisco, CA.

Emerging Women at Wisdom 2.0

We are coming to San Francisco!

Chantal will be speaking at Wisdom 2.0, and we would love to see you while we are in town.

Join us for Chantal’s Breakout Session Emerging Women: New Paradigms in Leadership and Entrepreneurship” with Sue Heilbronner and Natalia Oberti Noguera on Saturday, February 20th at 3:45pm.

Also be sure to check out “Wisdom 2.0 Women’s Leadership Intensive” – a day long intensive for women interested in exploring authentic leadership, honoring feminine values, and understanding their potential impact on the world.

This event focuses on our work and well-being while bringing compassion, empathy and connection into the digital age. Are you going? We can’t wait to see you there!

Ready for Angel Investing Bootcamp?

Pipeline Angels, a network of new and seasoned women investors, is changing the face of angel investing and creating capital for women social entrepreneurs. We are so proud to support them as they work to guarantee that women have the strategy and support they need to succeed in this revolutionary realm of finance.

Sound exciting? Then you’ll be interested in this opportunity:

Pipeline Angels has opened a call for applications for its spring 2016 signature angel investing bootcamps in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Columbus, DC, Houston, Miami, NYC and Philadelphia.

Candidates are encouraged to apply THIS WEEK.

PipelineAngels-SDSummit (FINALS)-45

Click here to read more about criteria, commitment and programs.

What must women bring to the world today? Jane Goodall knows.

When I think of Jane Goodall, one specific moment plays in my mind.

It was about 9:30 at night, and she had just finished her brilliant keynote at Emerging Women Live 2015. This was, mind you, after she had flown into San Francisco just that day, done her mic check, prepared for the event and participated in the audience for the talks leading up to hers. Plus she still had a book-signing and a media room interview to go before calling it a night.

I thought she might be tired, so as she stepped down from the stage I offered her my hand. And with classic Goodall grace, she lightly refused my help and alit from the stage like a morning-fresh ballerina in slippers.

With this simple movement, after a long day of long lines and travel and sharing her heart on stage, she helped me realize that that’s the way through. That’s the way to navigate this modern world. Bringing such a level of grace is not only what helped her make such a tremendous impact in her field, it’s also what has given her and her work such longevity.

And that’s what I want to emulate. That’s what I want to start practicing now, so I have it to hold on to in my eighties.

So, what does the incomparable Jane Goodall say we women must bring to the world today? Watch this clip from a video she taped after that night’s book-signing, still brimming with characteristic grace:

Want more inspiration like this delivered to your Inbox? Just enter your first name and email in the sidebar to the right and click “loop me in” to receive our newsletter.

Loving the Lives We Are In

Five Easy Tips to Move from Theory to Practice

Have you ever started a new exercise regime to improve your health? Have you ever dedicated yourself to reaching a certain goal in your career? What about the dream of having a partner who is just the right fit for you?

Most of us relate to having dreams, goals and hopes for our lives. After all, these aspirations are what ignite the fire that drives you to get up and go after your deepest desires.   

I believe big dreams create the magic of your life and are meant to be approached with a curiosity and thirst to fully experience life—bumps and all. By opening up to the idea that the journey is the magic, rather than reaching the actual dream itself, you open the floodgates to love your life right now.

When you give yourself the gift of seeing and experiencing all that is amazing in your life at this very moment, you no longer need to delay happiness until you meet some future goal.

In an effort to simply love life exactly as it is right now, no matter what dreams are in the works, I made this list of reminders and inspirations to put into practice each day. I encourage you to give them a try and see which ones work best for you:

1. Self-Awareness

When you step outside of yourself and take a good honest look at how you are showing up, over time you begin to take yourself a whole lot less seriously. There is a real lightness and sense of ease that comes from being able to laugh at yourself and see the humor in a situation.

By regularly checking in with yourself, you may also start to notice the patterns in how you show up and where there may be room to shift and grow.

Being self-reflective in a healthy way helps to strengthen your relationship with yourself. It also builds your self-confidence and resourcefulness in trusting yourself to take steps that are congruent with who you are at your core. Meditation first thing in the morning and writing at any time of the day have become essential tools in building my self-awareness practice. Have fun choosing the tools that most suit your style in order to create meaning and consistency in your self-awareness practice.

2. Give

Give what you can, whenever you can. It could be spreading kindness through your words, smiles, and helpful acts, or merely being present for those you share space with. When you adopt a generous attitude, it becomes easier to let go of beliefs and judgments that create an ‘us against them’ mentality.

Giving without strings attached or ulterior motives not only brightens the receiver’s day, it also fills up your heart and the moments before you with joy. It feels good to give, so do it as much as your heart desires. If there are times where you can extend your reach out to your local or global community, then do that, too.

Approaching your life with compassion and love may very well be the greatest gift you could give yourself and your community. The ripple effect you create by being content and happy with your life will be felt and may very well become contagious.

3. Move

Your health and well-being is deeply connected to your feelings and overall attitude. When you feel good in your body, it becomes natural and easy to be happy with life.

We all vary in our abilities and the types of physical activities we enjoy. What may feel great for one person may not for another. The key is to engage in activities that you enjoy and movement that fits your lifestyle and needs. Do what works best for you to create a regular habit of moving your body to help you feel the very best you can.

4. Breathe

Deep, intentional breathing is one of the most powerful ways to calm yourself and ease feelings of stress and anxiety. The best part about this particular tool is that it is “built-in,” and pretty straightforward to engage! 

When you find yourself in a stressful situation, you are more than likely holding your breath. In these situations, if possible, take a few deliberate deep breaths, holding each for the count of four. Doing this helps calm your body and creates space to refocus your mind away from destructive or overwhelming thought patterns.

The more you practice focusing on your breath, whether that is through yoga, meditation or routinely scheduled times throughout the day, the more likely it will become a habit and natural place to go to transform stress.

Breath may not solve the world’s problems, but it certainly helps to soften the daily stress and tension that often accompanies a busy life.  
 

5. Gratitude

Gratitude is my number one favorite way to get out of any funk and into the joy of life. When you focus on what you are thankful for, you relive all of the beautiful stories and reasons why your life is worth loving right now–and that feels so good!

There are countless reasons to be thankful. Getting to wake up each day to the miracle of being alive is just one of them. There’s also the air you breathe, the sights you see, and the opportunities and possibilities before you. Your list of reasons to be grateful is as unique as you are, and is yours by design.

I love to start my day reflecting on three reasons I am grateful to be alive, and end it by reviewing three reasons I am grateful for my day. The more you engage in a gratitude practice, the more natural it becomes to scan your world and see new evidence of things to be grateful for.

Being genuinely thankful on a regular basis helps you to see why your life is worthy of loving right now at this very moment.

Don’t delay your happiness for later. Jump in and love the life you are in. You are worth it!

Wedding Photographers Vancouver Island
Emily Madill is an author, professional coach and motivational speaker. She lives on Vancouver Island, Canada, with her husband and two sons. She has a BA degree in business and psychology and completed her coach training through Erickson International College. She blogs for Huffington Post and has published multiple esteem building books for children. Emily enjoys an active lifestyle including running, fitness, yoga, and keeping up to the adventurous pace of her family. She is a firm believer in stretching comfort zones and Dreaming BIG! Check out her new book, Fall in Love with Your Life, One Week at a Time.