Not everyone knows this about me, but I am a lifelong dance GEEK. I love dance in all forms, and it was a big source of inspiration for me when I first started Emerging Women.
When I worked in publishing, I created a dance class and teacher training called SoulSweat® that was my “side passion.” I would teach on evenings and weekends, I built an engaged community, and some people even called it their Church. I even produced a series of classes in video format so that people outside of the Boulder area could get in on it as well.
It was a soulful class that encouraged authentic, full-body self-expression. The music and movements guided the dancers through a journey from tender vulnerability and openness, to embodied power and fierceness, and ultimately to deep integration and joy.
I got consistent feedback that each class was a powerful, transformative experience. ⚡
What I loved about teaching SoulSweat® (which is still being taught by other teachers to this day!) was leading people through an experience. I felt so gratified by the community that gathered — AND…what I loved most of all was curating the right music — the playlist — for each class!
And I didn’t just love making the playlist. It was something I was really good at. 😍
These playlists would always start slowly and then become emotionally charged. As the energy of the room became more and more intense, so would the music. The music and the movement went hand in hand, intentionally paired to allow the dancer to trust their body and spirit.
It was hugely transformational — for me and for the other participants.
After I created Emerging Women and the company began to grow, and my exhaustion grew with it, I began working with my friend and colleague, Kristen Wheeler, with her Native Genius® Method.
(If you’d like to join Kristen and me so you can uncover your Native Genius® right away, I invite you to a free masterclass + mini-course, Power Up Your Native Genius®. I share more about it below, but if you’re feeling curious, you can cut right to it now).
Right off the bat, she asked me the question she asks everyone:
❤️ “What’s something you love that you’re also good at?” ❤️
Ha, I thought. There’s no way she’s going to be able to connect my love of making playlists for dance class with my Native Genius® and what I do for Emerging Women.
I assumed I was going to stump her. (Spoiler: I didn’t.)
I didn’t see my making a “silly little playlist” as a skill. Or important at all.
This was partially because the art of choreographing and leading a dance class came very easily to me. And it was also because I was shy about sharing anything about my personal passion for dance while I was creating a company based around professional women’s leadership.
In fact, this was true of other skills of mine. Anything that came easy to me, I assumed, was inconsequential and not of value to the world. The harder the task was, the more I valued it — and the more I kicked myself because I wasn’t naturally good at it.
But Kristen is gifted at helping people notice what is already easy for them, what they are already good at, and what they love. And then how to bring more of that into their work and lives.
There is gold here that often gets overlooked — but it’s the key to feeling both successful AND happy with your work and life.
Kristen helped make the connection between the effortless work of making a playlist for my dance classes and the important work I was doing at Emerging Women.
“What you do for Emerging Women is the same as what you do when making those playlists for your dance class,” she said. “You create experiences for women to warm up, get vulnerable, be themselves, and experience a peak before cooling down and reentering the world with a new perspective.”
What a staggering revelation! 🤯
Here I was, thinking that my playlists were silly and inconsequential and unimportant.
And Kristen was able to connect what I love about the art of the playlist to what makes me good at creating leadership programs at Emerging Women that participants routinely say are the best programs they’ve ever taken.
That connection wasn’t obvious to me at first!
When I launched Emerging Women, I was embarrassed to see dance photos of myself.
And now I can see how I drew so many of my learnings from SoulSweat® and brought them directly into Emerging Women. I can see now that all of my wisdom around women’s leadership actually came from my relationship with dance.
I didn’t realize how much it was BECAUSE of my relationship with dance — and my genius in that area of my life — that I was able to launch into leadership and be successful with Emerging Women.
There’s no system, no blueprint, no “scalable” model that would have made that connection for me.
You can see why Native Genius® has become such a core part of what Emerging Women is all about!
Working from my Native Genius® saved my life. And my work.
It made me more self-assured and helped me to shape my business. So that I can do what I love and be five times more influential and impactful.
It helped me recover from exhaustion and build the multi-million dollar corporate leadership arm of Emerging Women, serving thousands of women (and men!) in companies like HP, Oracle, Asana, and more.
It helped me bring those same corporate leadership programs to you in the form of my newest offering, The Radiant Leader Mastery Program for Leadership and Life. 💡
Since incorporating the Native Genius® Method into all of our training programs, we have helped over 1,000 women get super clear about what they want in a way that’s not always obvious or scripted.
It’s helped them (and me, too) feel more confident about our unique geniuses and contributions — seeing the value of these geniuses in many areas of life.
It’s helped us stop discounting what comes easily to us and thus redesign our work and lives to be less draining, like pushing a boulder up a hill, and to be more energizing, easier, and in flow.
It’s helped us all trust our bodies and spirits.
Working with my Native Genius® helped me (and thousands of others) do less of what was grinding me down and more of what makes my eyes light up for my work.
4 Quick Tips to Utilize Native Genius® in Your Own Life
When we use the Native Genius® model in the Radiant Leader program or any other of our leadership trainings, it’s an immersive and personalized experience.
And while a few “quick tips” could never replace the deep and transformative work we do in our trainings or that Kristen does in her own Native Genius® workshops, here are three ways that this program has helped me (and can help you start to realize your own potential, too).
1. What do you love to do that you’re good at?
Something I loved to do was make playlists that would guide the choreographic arc of my dance classes. It was just what popped into my head when Kristen asked me the question.
What you love to do doesn’t need to be directly linked to your business. For me, it wasn’t. Making playlists was a way for me to rejuvenate myself during my downtime. In fact, it didn’t really have anything to do with Emerging Women or my work in publishing.
Your passions can be found in your hobbies or downtime, or even in your business. They can seem frivolous or silly or inconsequential.
Don’t judge yourself or your passions. Sometimes the “sillier” the better, because that might indicate it’s something that comes easily to you.
2. How does this inform your work/business?
In what ways does doing what you love make you good at your business or job? What is it specifically that you love about your passions? Are you incorporating these passions into your work?
Are there ways in which you can incorporate more of your Native Genius® into your work and your offering to the world?
If you’re finding this difficult to figure out on your own, I recommend consulting someone in your inner circle.
3. Consult your community.
I never would have linked the art of the dance choreography and what I was creating at the Emerging Women live events or what I am delivering to people in the corporate world, without Native Genius®.
In fact, I was so dead set on proving Kristen wrong that in telling her about my love of dance, I was practically challenging her to try to find those connections.
I needed someone close to me to make the link between something I was naturally good at (that also came easily to me) and the transformational programs I was creating. Someone who knew my business and how I operate it.
Who do you have in your community that you can consult? Who can you ask to help you make those connections?
When you have a close-knit circle of women who know your business and understand your passions (no matter how seemingly “silly” or inconsequential), it’s even better than asking for advice within a friend group.
4. Join us for “Power Up Your Native Genius®”
To help you do more of what you LOVE (and less of what you don’t love, even if you are good at it, ‘should’ do it, or others expect you to do it!), I invite you to Power Up Your Native Genius® so you can uncover your Native Genius® right away:
🎙 Power Up Your Native Genius® masterclass: Join me and Kristen Wheeler, creator of Native Genius®, for an exclusive FREE webinar where we will delve deeper into the Native Genius® Method.
💡 Discover Your Native Genius® Mini-Course (free!): Through video & PDF guides, Kristen will guide you to identify your unique strengths and talents — the foundation of your Native Genius®.
You will be guided to uncover two hidden obstacles that keep you stuck in draining work, power up your natural abilities for success and happiness, and learn proven techniques that will help you do more of what makes your heart sing (and less of what sucks your soul)!
May your eyes light up with joy and success! 🤩