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.


kate

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

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!

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

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!

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.

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.

Q: What do disco, a capella, Brené Brown and Elizabeth Gilbert have in common?

A: This amazing spontaneous karaoke moment from Emerging Women Live 2015, proving that business leadership, personal growth, and straight up FUN are not mutually exclusive terms.

After two of our favorite authors shared the details of their super-supportive and hilariously honest friendship on stage, Elizabeth Gilbert and Brené Brown led the crowd in an impromptu a cappella version of Gloria Gaynor’s I Will Survive, “dedicated to Shame and Scarcity.”

We love this community of women and the real sense of intimate connection that courses through the entire event. These power women, from audience and stage alike, become our peers – our sisters in revolutionary change.

If you want to feel the energy up close and in person for yourself, tickets go on sale today for the 4th Annual Emerging Women Live conference, October 13-16 in San Francisco, CA. Give yourself a truly transformative gift this holiday season. Get registered HERE.

Investing in the SheEconomy

Want to be a part of the SheEconomy? Hear from expert investors on how women are using their money, power and influence to change the world in this clip from the stellar panel at Emerging Women Live 2015 to find out where you fit into the SheEconomy:

Vicki Saunders is the founder of SheEO, a program for women entrepreneurs that supports the next generation of women-led social ventures to lead from their strengths on their own terms. She is a serial entrepreneur, passionate mentor to the next generation of change makers, and leading advocate for entrepreneurship as a way of creating positive transformation in the world.

Sue Heilbronner is the co-founder and CEO of MergeLane, a groundbreaking, award-winning startup accelerator targeting companies with at least one woman in leadership. She also consults with fast-growing digital companies and executive teams through her work as Chief Catalyst at Boulder Ideas.

Trish Costello is the founder and CEO of Portfolia, a collaborative entrepreneurial investing community designed for women. Trish was named in The Ten Women in Tech to Watch in 2015 by Inc magazine and to The 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs of 2014 by Goldman Sachs.

Our Top 9 Fave Wisdom Quotes from Emerging Women Live 2015 Power Talks

If you loved our Emerging Women Live 2015 keynote speakers, don’t miss the wisdom from our Emerging Short talks, too. These power talks let us hear from a diverse group of women who are positively using their feminine leadership to change the world. We’ve sifted through our notes and gathered our top nine favorite quotes.

Be sure to catch these brilliant women on the live stream archive, which will be available for replay until Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2015.

 

  1. Vicki Saunders (Founder of SheEO)

“We (as women) have not been at the table for designing this world. We need to be there for VERSION 2.0. We all need to redesign this world desperately.” twitter

 

  1. Wokie Nwabueze(Founder of Women Prepared to Lead)

wokie-nwabueze

“When you can become enchanted by who you are, when you can forgive the part of you that betrayed you, then you will be seen and heard and nothing less than captivating.” twitter

 

  1. Promise Phelon (CEO of TapInfluence)

promisephelon

“Grit is the sand that is exfoliating the path of where you want to go.” twitter

 

  1. Anese Cavanaugh (Creator of IEP Method)

“People often think it is the doing that is going to impact, what actually is more powerful is our presence.” twitter

 

  1. Neha Sangwan, MD(Founder of Intuitive Intelligence and Author of TalkRx)

neha sangwan

“It’s impossible to prove something to others that you don’t believe yourself.” twitter

 

  1. Johanna Jackman (Senior Director at LinkedIn)

unnamed

“Vulnerability plus tenacity – they are the platform for being truly authentic.” twitter

 

  1. Natalia Oberti Noguera (Founder/CEO of Pipeline Angel Fellowship)

natalia-update

“Privilege is like oxygen, you don’t know it is there until it is gone.” twitter

 

  1. Guru Jagat (founder of the RA MA Institute)

guru-jagat

“It’s important for us to train our mind to consolidate our energy, so that we then can use that energy for a true revolution.” twitter

 

  1. Sahar Paz (Author, Speaker and Life Coach)

“Don’t let your shero cape, become a veil.” twitter

From Adrenalin to Inspiration: The Burnout Solution

How breaking our addiction to excitement helps us access our natural, sustainable energy.

Most people intuitively get the concept of switching your energy source from “adrenalin to inspiration.”  It’s actually quite similar to switching from oil to solar power. One form of energy creates negative consequences and is limited, and the other is sustainable and life regenerating. We can grasp this concept for our homes or cars, but what about our bodies and our being?

What I call “authentic” or “connected” power is the source of inspired energy. This is the place where we are in tune with ourselves, nature and others. When we are in tune with our authentic power, we naturally source from inspiration. Disconnected, or reactive, power acts through selfish competition, survival, and without regard for others. When we are sourcing from disconnection, we tap into adrenalin. We need to rush, be busy, not be lazy, and get it done when we are in an adrenalin state.

Most people mistake excitement for energy. Energy is energy, excitement is a heightened state which can burn out your natural energy reserves. This one discernment can change your life. Read on to understand the subtleties.

photo-1444090542259-0af8fa96557e

What is living from adrenalin?

For the most part, many of us use our stress response and adrenalin to increase productivity. We think this is the source of energy – it’s the source of the “just do it” mentality. The greater the pain, the greater the gain, so we push through and engage in a competition to determine who can work the most hours and juggle the most activities.

As a society, we are low-level adrenalin junkies. We chase it through caffeine, reality TV, dramatic relationships, Facebook, twitter, constant stimuli, and avoiding silence and stillness. Whether people know it or not, they tend to rely on adrenalin as their main energy source.

But this strategy is excitement masquerading as life-force. Living this way creates high periods of productivity, but they are always followed by the inevitable crash. That crash leaves us feeling low, disheartened, and guilty about doing nothing. Does this sound familiar to you?  Here are few more examples in order to determine if you are sourcing your energy from adrenalin.

Signs and Symptoms YOU Are Using Adrenalin as Energy

  • You can go for HOURS with no food or breaks and be very productive, but then you reach a limit after a couple days or on Fridays when you just can’t conjure up the energy anymore
  • You feel if you stop for one second you will “get behind”
  • Fear fuels your motivation
  • You never feel like you “get there”
  • You get snippy and irritable
  • You procrastinate on what matters, but busy yourself with other work (My house is very clean during tax season.)
  • You experience a lack of self-confidence, fraud syndrome, and FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)
  • You are never really full, content, or peaceful but you work hard to convince the world that you are

There is another way! When we are stressed, we cannot access the problem-solving state of mind necessary to relieve our stress. We cannot access intuition and imagination, and yes INSPIRATION. It’s hard to see what’s missing when we’re in this adrenalin soaked, spazzy place. But when we are able to shift to living from inspiration—to a state of connectedness and expansiveness—suddenly what we need becomes as obvious to us as getting a glass of water when we’re thirsty.

What does living from Inspiration look like?

Here are the possible benefits of shifting from adrenalin to inspiration:

  • Knowing you are enough, you matter, and your life is purposeful
  • Not requiring outside validation to feel on track in life or on a project
  • You operate from a place of: “I’m worthy, deserving, and good enough now. From this place, I can create whatever I put my mind and heart to”
  • Joy is regularly accessible
  • Your cell phone connection to the big boss of infinite wisdom is your intuition
  • You become inspired, feeling the desire from within to complete a task and you become an overflowing cup, rather than scraping from the bottom of your will power
  • You are pulled by your visions, rather than pushed by your self-criticisms

Simple Steps to Implement Inspiration Energy Into Your Life

I highly recommend stopping the search of what to do, and connect to your own inspired state to ask what you need. You know. I know you know. Now love yourself enough to do it, and be it. Remember, living things need life-sustaining nourishment. We need:

  • water
  • sleep
  • rest and work, ebb and flow
  • food that has nutrition for energy
  • the Sun
  • connection to other living things

You get the picture – doing what lights you up, nourishes you, makes you feel content.

Meditation Injection

Meditation can help train your connection to your inspired state of being. Here’s a quick practice I call Meditation Injection. It can take place during red lights in your car, bathroom breaks, elevators, waiting on the phone or in a line, waking up or falling asleep, commercial breaks, and so on. Giving yourself an uninterrupted two to five minutes is great. They key is to do what you know you will maintain. Here’s a tip: Set a reminder in your phone to remind you do this Meditation Injection.

Begin to breathe and notice how it feels. Feel the sensations: warm, cold, tingly, or perhaps numb, vacant.  You can’t get this wrong, just feel and notice. Feel your breath, notice and inhale and exhale. Notice how your body keeps you alive effortlessly. Notice that it’s all being done for you. The Earth is spinning and gravity is holding you in place. You are basically being hugged by the earth’s magnetic core. You might sigh or you might even tear up with relief and recognition. Inhale. Exhale.

Welcome back home – to being you and being connected to life.

Now you can get back to work and be your awesome, inspired self!


The Emerging Women Leadership Platform is dedicated to supporting learning and collaboration that integrates feminine leadership and catalyzes a vision for a thriving future. Start your 30 day free trial to get in on the live webinars, practices, and connection now!

What’s Your Devotion?

Bhakti Chai Shares One Simple Step to Help Your Dreams Come True

C.S. Lewis got it right when he said, “Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes, but when you look back, everything is different…”

When you think about it, we put a lot of energy into the world on a daily basis – into our jobs, our families, our personal goals, financial obligations, friendships, relationships, maybe even our dreams.  And when you look back over the course of a year, or two, or five, you realize how much has changed, even if your day-to-day routine has more or less remained the same. People tend to overestimate what they can do in a day, and underestimate what they can accomplish in a lifetime.

What if you took a chance, and focused a part of each day on what you are devoted to? Would your dreams of being a business owner finally come true? Would you be living in a place you actually love? Would you turn your side hobby into a true art form? The possibilities are endless when we believe in the power of our intentions and follow through on our commitment to ourselves.

Nearly a decade ago, I started Bhakti Chai with the intention to create a brand that not only offered a delicious chai, but also a company that made a huge impact in the global community. Bhakti in Sanskrit means “devotion through social action,” and I kept this top of mind when launching Bhakti Chai to remind myself of my commitment not only to fulfilling my own dreams, but to changing the world. I manifested that devotion by building Bhakti Chai and then later launched Gita, our social giving platform.

Gita means “Share Your Story” in Sanskrit and is the foundation for Bhakti Chai’s platform for positive social change.  G.I.T.A. stands for “Give”, “Inspire”, “Take Action” – the embodiment of what Bhakti Chai intends to do with the Gita Giving project.

 

This led us to taking the whole idea of taking devotion to the next level by inspiring others to share their devotion with us, and with the world. It’s one thing to know in your head and your heart what you feel devoted to, but once you put that on paper and share that energy with others and the universe, something starts to churn and then suddenly, that idea becomes manifested energy for change.

This year at Emerging Women Live, we asked participants to share their devotion with us by writing it down on a “My Bhakti” card, snapping a photo of themselves with their devotion and sharing it on social media. You can see by the photo that devotion can be big or small – it’s the larger act of empowering yourself to follow it, to grow that dream and intentionally work each day to commit to yourself and to your devotion that matters most.  

So, what is your Bhakti?

“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” – Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist.

 

Brook Eddy India 2015Brook Eddy is founder and CEO of Bhakti Chai. She has always been devoted to support those who are authentic, daring, and committed to making a difference in our global community.

Brené Brown and Elizabeth Gilbert Take the Stage Together at Emerging Women Live 2015

30 Minutes of Creativity, Inspiration, and Some Real-Deal Karaoke

If you’re like us and absolutely adore both Brené Brown and Elizabeth Gilbert, you’ve probably seen their selfies with each other, their shout-outs to each other on social media and in the press, and maybe you’ve even been following them side-by-side the last few months as they journey together through their respective book tours. They are clearly more than just ‘author friends’ and share an amazing, authentic, and soulful connection. If you’ve read their new books, Rising Strong and Big Magic, you’ve probably noticed their work goes hand in hand.

 

Did you know Emerging Women helped bring them together? The two met in person for the first time at Emerging Women Live 2013, when we hosted our inaugural event in Boulder, CO. And one of the most magical things about Emerging Women Live 2015 was reuniting Elizabeth Gilbert and Brené Brown on stage for a hilariously inspiring conversation and a beautiful glimpse into their amazing friendship. We have this conversation and all of our main stage keynotes on-demand until November 11, 2015. Login to the free live stream and get ready to be inspired beyond words!

Attendees were captivated as Brené and Liz discussed the inspiration, transformation, and emotional impact their work has had on each other. Brené got a lot out of Liz’s Big Magic, saying writing doesn’t always come easy for her, and Liz shared how she has been able to live a fully expressed life due to Brené’s work on vulnerability and shame.

Plus, they have each other’s back in the uber-competitive literary arena. Liz shared how the second person who reached out after Big Magic hit #1 on the New York Times best-seller list was Brené. Jounalists ask them, “You’re going to be on the same list – do you worry about that?” Their response is “What??? That’s a scarcity mindset.” They want huge, wild success for each other, and also realize there is a trembling, emotive ‘edge’ of journeying towards that.

 

“It’s okay to celebrate when wonderful things happen in your life, “says Liz, “and you have to. Pop the champagne and call your friend. Don’t be afraid of joy. That’s part of not being a martyr. It’s okay if you don’t get there, but my god how nice when you do.” She goes on to elucidate the difference between the Trickster and the Martyr. While a Martyr worries about who’s #1 on the New York Times, the trickster says “Have fun, Martyr. While you’re dying, I’m going to be over here dancing with your date, flipping things, throwing banana peels and pulling the rug out from under reality.”

Brené counters this genius perspective with a perfect, “Hi, my name’s Brené and I’m a Martyr.” But she goes on to show how Liz has taught her that you can flip martyrdom into tough trickster-dom. Brené flipped it by trusting her team in an edgy experiment where she played to her strengths by teaching Rising Strong to them first, letting the writing of the book come out of that process.

When Liz asked Brené about her edge, she opened up about Courageworks, her new online learning community that offers eCourses, workshops, and interviews developed to help people embrace bravery, lean into vulnerability, and rumble with the challenges that come with living a daring life.

Liz poignantly shared that her edge is trying to honestly express what she can and cannot do. Book-signing lines aren’t happening during her Big Magic tour, she explained, because she knows that’s the line she has to draw to stay healthy and sustain the energy it takes to share her book with thousands of people on a 5-country and unlimited city tour around the world. “I am taking a step back for myself,” she says. Major stress and anxiety lead up to making the decision to forgo book signings, but after significant deliberation and soul searching, she came to the decision that she could simply not risk ending up in the hospital.

 

2

In true soul-sister fashion, Brené echoed and applauded her difficult decision, challenging the audience, “Raise your hand if you are exhausted from saying yes when you want to say no.” The audience applauded in turn. The amazing duo ended their conversation by singing “I Will Survive” with the entire audience. If you haven’t seen it, it’s a must. Tune in now to fist-pump your way to a more fully expressed and creative life. The whole conversation plus karaoke finish is available for replay on-demand until November 11, 2015 – click here to watch!

P.S.) You can apply for 10 Behavioral Health Continuing Education credits for participating in the live stream or attending Emerging Women Live in person! Apply here.

The Native Genius of Jane Goodall: A Map to Living Our Truth

As women today, we’re hungry to live the truth of who we are at work—and even insisting on it—but how to do that often feels uncharted.

Jane Goodall, PhD, DBE

Jane Goodall, PhD, DBE

What’s so remarkable about Dr. Jane Goodall (Emerging Women Live 2015 keynote speaker) is that she not only pioneered science, but she also opens our eyes to how to work from our most authentic self—all starting in the 1950’s.

She didn’t have the “right education.” She didn’t “plan it all out” or follow rules for making it. Rather, she made her preeminent scientific contributions by living the deep truth of who she is. All these years later, her path is still one of the most inspiring I’ve seen. In my work to help individuals and teams combine success and fulfillment, Jane’s life serves as a kind of archetypal map that guides us into authentic territory that’s available to all of us. 

Jane’s Early Insistent Actions

At the age of 23, this untrained, captivating blonde Brit was invited to Africa and met a renowned scientist. These facts on their own imply she simply landed in the quintessential right time and place. However, it was actually the momentum of what I call her Insistent Actions that led to her success.

As a little girl, Jane consistently repeated a set of actions, which she honed into valuable skills. Imagine Jane when she was 5 years old, sitting in a chicken coop. Hiding in straw, she was determined to know, “Where does the egg come out?” She waited unobtrusively for hours until she found out.

She also catalogued, drew, and wrote about animals. In countless personal letters, she wove together intricate descriptions of animals she watched. All these actions were unprompted by people or obligations. At 13, she wrote to her friend, “I am home today as I have a cold, and I am practising drawing birds from real life. I am determined to get good at drawing them.”

Like a fish swimming or a rose blooming, these Insistent Actions were native in her. She couldn’t not do them.

She brought to life something inside her—in the words of an E.E. Cummings poem—“which is natural, which is infinite, and which is yes.” We see what is natural, infinite, and yes in 13-year-old Jane as she’s lying on her bed with the sniffles—pencil and notebook in hand, determined to get good at drawing animals.

Dr. Jane Goodall in Gombe National Park

Dr. Jane Goodall in Gombe National Park

From Insistent Actions to Prodigious Impact

When Jane met her mentor, paleoanthropologist Louis Leakey, his life’s dream was to reveal the mysteries of human evolution. At a time when the typical methods for studying animals were killing them and examining the remains, his vision to observe chimps in their natural habitat was cutting-edge. He knew he needed a keen observer, and Jane’s Insistent Actions—practiced thousands of times over two decades—had shaped her into one. Soon after meeting her, he recognized her observational prowess and said she had “record eyes.”

Despite no formal training, her Insistent Actions developed into her Native Genius—which is something we all have. Native Genius is the intersection of what we love doing and what we’re good at. It expresses itself in a collection of Insistent Actions we do, that we may not notice we do. When we focus, practice, and train those actions, they have the potential to grow into something powerful and useful like Jane’s “record eyes.”

Jane’s life shows us how we can grow our Native Genius from moment-to-moment, starting where we are, regardless of our life circumstances.

Jane called her time studying the chimps “paradise.” That’s because she hit her Native Genius jackpot. She started using her Insistent Actions like never before, in a focused and deliberate way. All of the Gombe Stream Chimp Reserve became her “chicken coop.” Her patient, reverent observing was one of the key actions that made her so successful when living among the chimpanzees. In her first year there, she had already made four pioneering discoveries. The advancements in science were exponential.

Young researcher Jane Goodall with baby chimpanzee Flint at Gombe Stream Reasearch Center in Tanzania.

Young researcher Jane Goodall with baby chimpanzee Flint at Gombe Stream Reasearch Center in Tanzania.

Trusting Your Insistent Actions

Most of us don’t follow our Insistent Actions with Jane’s kind of devotion, because the uncertainty can be excruciating. We want to know the destination before we begin. We don’t sense our own eyes lighting up when we do them. Even if we do sense the joy, we need to know, “Where will this go?”

The answer we often get from inside is “nowhere,” or worse: “somewhere bad”—for example, a life without love or money. Fear gets in the driver’s seat and we subtly turn away from the spark of YES in favor of something seemingly more productive, more marketable, or more certain. Jane followed the spark of yes without knowing the destination. We can too.

We may be afraid to ask ourselves what our Insistent Actions are. Like the hero in a story, we fear we’ll get all the way to the treasure chest, only to pause, open it, and find it empty. As much as I’ve partnered with people to uncover their Native Genius, I’ve never found the treasure chest empty. Ever.

I’ve also never found it full of useless junk. We always find a collection of Insistent Actions, as unique as a fingerprint. The Insistent Actions almost always have underused energy and creativity behind them. Remember, what made Jane’s “nothing” of watching animals turn into a “something” was her natural, infinite, yes that animated it. We all have that.

No matter what our life circumstances, each of us can spend 15-minutes a week doing an Insistent Action we adore.

We can trust that it will grow and coalesce. Jane shows us the extent to which Insistent Actions are, by their very nature, generative. They generate results, learning, and trying again. Jane shows us that we can risk devotion to our Native Genius without knowing exactly how to make it into something. The Insistent Actions themselves are a map we can trust that unfolds with each step. Following them will pull us forward into the territory of our Native Genius, our thriving, and our most wondrous contributions.

Kristen Wheeler is the creator of the Native Genius® Method which helps people and teams be in the sweet spot of big results and personal fulfillment.

She has consulted for more than two decades with companies about the intersection of human thriving and organizational performance—from multi-national companies with 80,000 employees to small nonprofits with 100 employees. She’s been a speaker and audience favorite at TEDxBoulder and Emerging Women Live. At Emerging Women Live in 2015 she will speak on Vision and Native Genius with Vanessa Loder.

Threads Worldwide: Bridging the Local to the Global through Social Enterprise

After traveling to nearly 50 countries, many in the developing world, Angela Yost, Kara Wiegand and Lindsay Murphy knew they wanted to give back to the communities that were so impactful to them.

When they witnessed the severe poverty in these communities–from the little girl in Siem Reap, Cambodia who stepped into the sewer while begging for grape soda, to the families in Mumbai, India who were living on the highway medians between a constant flow of traffic–the women were determined to find a way to support these people in a sustainable and economically meaningful way.

Kara, Angela and Lindsay are the co-founders of Threads Worldwide, a fair trade company that brings jewelry handcrafted by artisan women in developing countries to market in the US through a social sales model and online shop. It’s not your average jewelry company. It’s one that is making a real and sustainable impact in the world.

Many of the cooperatives that Threads Worldwide works with employ women who are survivors of sex trafficking, have physical disabilities or are affected by other economic, social or political factors. When these women are taught a tangible skill (jewelery making), paid a fair wage and provided a safe workplace, they begin to emerge out of poverty and start to thrive. Depending on the season, they empower hundreds of women in over 12 developing countries around the world, from Ecuador to Kenya to Indonesia.

In the United States, women join the Threads Worldwide community as Threads Sales Consultants. Sales Consultants show the world how to shop with heart – ethically and consciously. Teachers, business owners, lawyers, doctors and stay-at-home mothers share the stories of the artisan partners while also earning an income for themselves by selling the handcrafted jewelry at trunk shows and within their communities.

Recently, EW had the chance to talk to these inspiring women about bridging the local to the global and the rewarding challenges of creating a social enterprise.

EW: How did the unique business model that Threads Worldwide created come to life?

Kara, COO & Co-Founder:The visions [of poverty] never faded, and that bolstered our resolve to find an answer to the question “What can we do to help?” We were drawn to community commerce, and Threads Worldwide was started as a way to provide a market and income to skilled artisans who would otherwise be limited in their potential.

Lindsay, Director of Artisan Partnerships & Co-Founder: We are very motivated to work with women since women invest up to 90% of their income back into their families in the form of healthcare, education and food. When coming up with business ideas, we were determined to find a way to connect women. Threads Worldwide does just that – both globally and locally – with our social sales model. It’s always so inspiring to hear how our Threads Sales Consultants are making an income for their families while supporting women across the globe.

Angela, CEO & Co-Founder: Exactly. We wanted to provide a scalable way to impact artisans around the world, so we developed a social selling model where women in the US can make money while also making a difference. By becoming a Threads Sales Consultant or by hosting a Threads trunk show, you are contributing to the growth of a community across the world.

EW: What are the challenges of running a social enterprise, especially since this type of business (one with a social mission at the heart) is a relatively new model?

Angela: The challenges are no different from many other young or emerging companies – from getting capital to business development. I think something Kara, Lindsay and I have that gives us an advantage is our really great network. We know really smart and successful people who are willing to introduce us to their networks and help our business grow. There is a lot of power in collaboration.

Lindsay: One of the challenges has been the education piece. Not everyone is versed or familiar with the fair trade movement, but it’s been incredibly rewarding to witness our Threads Sales Consultants take this journey with us, and educate themselves about fair trade, the supply chains of where their clothing and food comes from, and learning how powerful their purchases can be. We work with a cooperative that employs women who are survivors of sex trafficking, and it’s amazing to see how a few of our Threads Sales Consultants are using this story as fuel to run their Threads business, while also becoming advocates in combatting sex-trafficking.

Kara: At the end of the day though, despite any challenge the day presents, we love working with women around the world in true partnership. Threads Sales Consultants wouldn’t be successful without the beautiful handcrafted products made by our Artisan Partners. Conversely, the artisan women can’t thrive without access to the marketplace provided by our Consultants. We know that creating opportunity for and connection between women is the most effective way to create global change and that keeps us going!

EW: Can you tell us more about the jewelry and your products?

Kara: We source handcrafted products from around the world that we love for their quality and style, regardless of their story – but each piece has an amazing story.

Angela: Many of our jewelry items are made from sustainable and upcycled materials, too, from tagua seed to scrap metals. Lots of vibrant and fun pieces… and gorgeous, timeless bracelets, necklaces, and earrings that are great for everyday wear.

Lindsay: The artisans are incredibly talented; we’re continually blown away by their work!

Interested in joining the Threads Movement? Click here to learn more!

Threads Worldwide will be at Emerging Women Live, October 8-11 in San Francisco. Stop by their table and connect with them!

For more inspiring stories of emerging women in the business world, as well as tools and resources for your emergence, check out more of our blog and our podcasts.

Speaker Highlight: Esther Perel on Love, Sex and Desire

We are so excited to announce that we just added some serious ooh la la to the lineup for Emerging Women Live 2015.

The provocative Esther Perel will be joining us to talk about the tantalizing dance between modern love and desire, and how we can reclaim our feminine sexuality as a power source for life and business. Yes, please!

Just watch the first minute of this Esther’s TedTalk. We dare you to not hear a question that resonates with you:

Intrigued? Check out her badass bio:

Esther Perel is recognized as one of the most original and insightful voices on personal and professional relationships and the complex science behind human interaction. She is a best­-selling author, practicing psychotherapist in New York, organizational consultant for Fortune 500 companies, and regular speaker on the topics of erotic intelligence, trauma, conflict resolution and infidelity. Fluent in nine languages, the Belgian native is a cross­-cultural relationship philosopher, shifting the paradigm of our modern approach to relationships.

Esther points out that in our modern world, we want to experience sexuality not simply for survival or duty. She says, “This is the first time that we want sex over time about pleasure and connection that is rooted in desire.”

She invites us to wonder, “When you love, how does it feel? And when you desire, how is it different?” The push/pull between wanting grounded security and our need for imagination and adventure exists both in our intimate relationships and in the way we relate to our entrepreneurial endeavors.

Masterfully, Esther elucidates how we can reconcile this dichotomy with playfulness and curiosity to activate a truly fulfilling journey. “Sex isn’t something you do, eh? It’s a place you go. It’s a language. It isn’t just a behavior,” she says. That is feminine power in action.

Getting clarity around our loves and desires (and learning to merge the two) is just as crucial to our authentic success in life as a solid business plan.

Emerging Women Live is on a mission to bring both concepts into the forefront to help revolutionary women like you take full advantage of all arenas of consciousness, so you can have the greatest impact as you work to make meaningful change in your life, your community and the world.

Ready to own your wanting and align it with your plans for success?

We hope you’ll join Esther Perel, Brené Brown, Dr. Neha Sangwan, Dr. Jane Goodall and more at Emerging Women Live 2015. Don’t miss out on your ticket to personal and professional transformation!

Freaking Out? Here’s 5 Ways Elizabeth Gilbert Deals with Fear

I recently interviewed Elizabeth Gilbert for our Emerging Women Podcast on the subject of Creativity and Fear (the focus of her newest book, Big Magic, due out in September). The fact that this wildly successful woman still struggles with fear gives me hope! The insights Liz shared in our conversation are not just for artists and writers. They can apply to any of us who are working on our passions, whether in business or at the writing desk.

Liz’s key to embracing fear: “It’s really about working with your fear and around your fear, without denying it and without attacking it.” But how? Check out these excerpts from my most recent podcast conversation with Liz: Creating Big Magic – Part 1. 

5 Ways Elizabeth Gilbert Deals with Fear:

1. Remember that fear has no toggle switch

“Fear is so old and so important that it’s not subtle,” Liz says. “It’s a toggle switch—it just goes on and off.” It lacks nuance, which is so important to creativity and authentic leadership. Its only function is survival.

But she respects fear. “It’s a viable and important human action,” she says. “But it also can get in your way when it comes to creativity, because creativity always asks you to enter into realms with uncertain outcome, and fear hates that. Fear always tries to shut that down.”

There are times and places where fear is very valuable. But when it comes to creativity, we need to put fear into perspective.

2. Start a conversation with Grandfather Fear

It starts with this wise advice Liz gives: “Without trying to get in a war with fear or pretend that it doesn’t exist or be ungrateful to it, we have to have a conversation with Grandfather Fear every time we begin a new creative project.”

Pretending that you have no fear is crazy. Hating fear is reactive, because we’re here as a human race because it helped us survive. It’s important to bring a healthy respect to the conversation, but have the conversation nonetheless.

How does Liz do it? She says to Grandfather Fear: “I know you’re scared because I’m going to expansively do something with an uncertain outcome, but we’re going to do it anyway.”

3. Bring Kid Sister Curiosity into the conversation

Liz talked at Emerging Women Live 2013 about how helpful it is to personify all the different emotions inside of her. In the podcast, she brought up the usefulness of that same technique when dealing with fear.

“I’ve got Grandpa Fear with the hand on the hand brake being like, ‘No one leaves this house!’ and ‘You kids get out of my yard!’ but I’ve also got the really reckless kid sister – Curiosity – who has no sense of consequence and wants to say “yes” to everything.”

Can you recognize those different parts within you? Now that you’ve said “hi” to Grandfather Fear, can you introduce him to Kid Sister Curiosity? Liz says that if you can, and you let them talk to each other, you can begin to approach wisdom.

4. Trust your Central Self to moderate

“Somewhere in me there’s a self who, if I’ve gotten enough sleep, if I am eating well, if I am in a relationship that’s nourishing, if I’m taking care of myself, and if I’m calm and still, can effectively moderate between all of these modalities,” Liz says.

You can tell Kid Sister Curiosity that you love her free-spirit, but to remember that someone has to pay the bills. And tell Grandfather Fear that you appreciate him looking out for you, “but you can put the shotgun down – those are just trick-or-treaters.”

She stresses the importance of recognizing the YOU that is in charge. And if you’re taking care of you, then you can trust yourself to hear all sides and move forward.

5. Keep doing the work

“Inspiration doesn’t owe you anything,” says Liz. Once you’ve found a balance between fear and creativity, you still have to do the work. She gets the good sleep she needs to start fresh. She sits down at 7am to write. She invites Inspiration to the table and then she gets to work.

“But it’s not like the Annunciation where suddenly an angel comes into the room,” she says. “It’s a drag, but I don’t sit there thinking, ‘Hey, you didn’t come to me! I asked you!’ I put the message out. They know I’m there. And I’ll just sludge through it.”

But the beautiful part? She says, “I’ve got one ear open, ready for the unexpected thing.”[inline]twitter-logo-ew[/inline]

She’s “ready for the sentence that I didn’t know I could write. Ready for something to change. Ready for something to grow.” And she’s teaching me to bring that open conversation to business, too.

Want more ways to deal with Fear? Get a free download of Power Practices Vol. 1 – Women Who Are Changing the World, and tune in to women’s leadership expert Tara Mohr’s “When You Don’t Feel Ready.”

Sahar Paz Celebrates Her Independence

On the 4th of July, we couldn’t help but remember the story Sahar Paz told at Emerging Women’s Power Night Boulder.

Not just because Sahar is a firework of a woman. Which she is. “Smokin’ is the word that comes to mind,” said Emerging Women founder Chantal Pierrat.

When Sahar walked out on the stage, she was absolutely owning it. Don’t believe us? Just take a look at her amazing shoes:

But she didn’t start off owning it.

Sahar was born in war-torn Iran, where she never knew from one day to the next if all of her classmates would show up at school, or if the sidewalk in front of her apartment would still be there. She got the feeling that if she just stayed very quiet and very still, everything might be okay. Despite the bombs.

When she moved to America as a young girl, she was stunned by 4th of July fireworks displays. How could these sounds mean celebration and Independence when to her the soundtrack of explosions had always said live in fear and know your place?

In that environment of fear, her personal inner voice was shamed and shushed out of existence before she was 10 years old.

Instead, she aimed for perfection and quiet in an attempt to mitigate “the burden of her existence.” As she got older, the voice of perfection turned into wanting to please not just parents, teachers and friends, but also men. She habitually turned to others to define her value.

Looking around, the direct line to that value seemed to be MONEY.

Her tireless work ethic eventually took her to a corner office in NYC, complete with a view of Manhattan and the Queensboro bridge – the whole bit. From the outside, she appeared to be living a  “Sex and the City” life. She was check, check, checking all the boxes, but she was not happy.

What was once a hopeful sadness turned into a hopeless depression.

But Sahar turned things around. How did she do it? She found her voice.

“We all have a war of words within. I learned how to get out of my war way faster because I was dealt a lot of shit way earlier. But that’s probably the only difference between you and me.” Now, Sahar has stepped into a state of permission.

“Turns out Maya Angelou was my guardian angel,” Sahar said.

She bought a ticket to Emerging Women Live 2014 specifically to see the incomparable poet. And though Maya Angelou passed before the event, Sahar knew she needed something and decided to go anyway.

And she didn’t just go casually. She showed up. “I needed to be in the spit zone,” she said. She sat in the front row as woman after woman reflected versions of her own experience back to her, albeit in different contexts and with different words. She found strength in those women. And strength in herself.

She especially connected with the theme of permission.

“Chantal gave herself permission in front of all of us. She was vulnerable, right at the start, and gave herself permission to eff up during the weekend.” Sahar was moved and gave herself permission to do the same – to show up as her true self, to let her inner voice speak, and to trust that if she eff-ed up, it wouldn’t be the end of the world.

“I was not holding on to that voice of failure,” she realized. “That’s only one voice within me. That is not all of me.” She knew her inner voice had more to say than just censorship, criticism and judgement.

Sahar’s journey has led her from a quiet perfectionist to a fierce woman, embracing her inner voice and encouraging others to do the same. We are thrilled to share her voice with you as an Emerging Short speaker at Emerging Women Live 2015.

“We exist in a world of abundance. All scarcity is here,” Sahar said as she pointed to her heart.

“There is an abundance of pain in this world,” she echoed,  “so that means there is also an abundance of opportunity.” Are you ready to take it?

Sahar Paz is going to change the world, but she knows she cannot do it alone.

In one of our favorite moments, she said, “Do not take the voice of comparison – we gotta hold each other’s hands. I’m standing on your shoulders. And I’m reaching for the UN.”

Then she gave herself permission to deliver a badass rap, full of her voice and straight from the heart. And it was smokin’.

What are you reaching for? And whose shoulders are there for you while you do it? We would love to know – please share with us in the comments.

Why you can’t afford to miss Emerging Women Live 2015

“How can we go to this? Women just like us! This needs to happen!!!”

That was the commentary I sent, along with the link to register for Emerging Women Live 2014, to my buddy Nat on April 5th last year.

Little did I know, this was the start of a journey that would change everything…

(This is a picture taken on my iPhone, when Nat and I accosted Danielle LaPorte in the lobby at EWLive14 to tell her that we came all the way from Vancouver – where she also lives – to see her in New York City.)

And I almost didn’t buy my ticket.

In the months leading up to the Early Bird registration deadline, I went through a huge personal shift.

That July, I walked away from a toxic business partnership that was supposed to have been my solid plan after leaving my 6-figure corporate job in December 2013. I had no income and only a seedling idea for a business called “Secondhand Therapy.”

Paying for my ticket to Emerging Women Live was terrifying. I had to take money out of my retirement savings to pay for it. I kept worrying that I couldn’t afford the conference and the trip.

Thankfully, I listened to that tiny whisper inside of me that said I should just go.

My weekend MBA in NYC.

It is almost impossible to capture the lightening bolt that hit my soul during the four days I immersed myself in the Emerging Women Live experience. I have since joked that I learned enough to qualify for an MBA during that long weekend.

I sat on the edge of my seat as Brené Brown said the world needed more “badassery” and challenged us to discover what we needed to give ourselves permission to do and be.

Right then and there, I gave myself permission to be “little kid” excited, make new friends and play Show & Tell with other entrepreneurs. I still write myself new permission slips when I am scared.

Over the next few days, I was overwhelmed by the wisdom from women who had learned from their battle scars.

I learned how to “snatch back my dignity” (Wokie Nwabueze), to create my own “I have to’s” list (Arianna Huffington), to play bigger and “share what I already know” (Tara Mohr), to “know the season I am in” (Kris Carr), and to trust that the NO’s I say will be the key to my success (the inimitable Danielle LaPorte).

In the midst of all this was this woman, Chantal Pierrat. As Chantal introduced various speakers, she shared parts of her own story. I was in awe of how she created this Emerging Women Live experience through her passion, determination and her belief that we must surround ourselves with incredible women.

The new friends.

Although I came to NYC with my dear friend Nat, I was excited about the opportunity to meet new women who were on similar journeys.

During the Power Circles that kicked off the conference, I met Katy, who just two weeks ago told me that it was time to enjoy a new phase in my business because of what I had accomplished. She insisted that I pitch this blog idea to the Emerging Women team – and it worked!

I also met Chelsea, who was also on the verge of “going live” with her business. We had regular check-in calls after the conference to encourage each other to take brave steps.

During dinner on Friday, I met Dawn. I ended up having to take my glasses off because I was sobbing as Dawn shared how her husband had passed away a month prior, and her brave next step was to head to this conference. For the record, I don’t cry in public, but this weekend changed that permanently.

Dawn is a kindred spirit who has brought me light and encouragement and joy in the most unexpected ways. I feel as if we have known each other for decades.

And there were so many other smaller interactions with like-minded women who left their fingerprints on my life…

The after-math.

Simply put: I became a woman who stepped fully into her calling.

Within weeks of the conference, I was published in both The Huffington Post and Tiny Buddha, a self-improvement blog with 1.5 million followers.

I used my new status as “Huffington Post contributor” to start a series of interviews with inspiring authors such as Gail Larsen (speaking coach for Danielle LaPorte and Kris Carr) and Shasta Nelson.

I went on to secure several speaking engagements, appear on a couple of podcasts, become an official blogger for my local TEDx event, contribute to the Tiny Buddha book being published by Harper Collins in Spring 2016, and write bi-weekly for Vancouver’s largest blog, Vancity Buzz.

I built and launched my own website, and hustled to complete an 8 module “Introducing You” eCourse. I developed a workshop called “The Seduction of Stress,” which I presented to 200 women this past May, and was recently booked to transform the presentation into a full day workshop this coming October.

My email list had 60 people on it when I showed up at Emerging Women Live 2014. It now has over 1600 subscribers on it, without having to spend any money on advertising.

None of this was due to extraordinary talent or connections or luck. It was a direct result of putting into action everything I learned at the Emerging Women Live conference.

I decided to be brave and hustle and pitch and trust and relax, and most importantly be the woman I want to be.

Reflecting back.

“What if we had not gone to EWLive14? It scares me to think of how small our lives would be,” I recently observed during happy hour with my buddy Nat.

It is frightening to think how close I came to deciding I couldn’t afford to attend.

I would be a shadow of myself if it weren’t for those four days.

I wouldn’t have known what I was capable of. I wouldn’t have connected with the women who are now my biggest cheerleaders.

Am I going to Emerging Women Live 2015? You bet!

I couldn’t risk missing out on another life-changing weekend.

How about you? What impact did EWLive have on your life? Please share with us in the comments below…

8 Badass Environmentalists You Should Know

In honor of Earth Day and Arbor Day, we’re celebrating 8-extraordinary women who have continuously advocated and rallied for our earth.

These women work endlessly to implement policies and enact change to preserve and protect our environment – from waterways, forests, access to clean air, oceans, mountains, to the precious wildlife that reside within these ecosystems.

The challenges we face today, especially with the onset of climate change, have opened new opportunities in the environmental sector that has long been filled by men. The progress that has been made by these remarkable women is illustrative of just how dynamic the feminine power really is.

1. Dr. Jane Goodall

Dr. Goodall is considered one the world’s foremost experts on chimpanzees and ecology – it is hard to overstate the degree to which she has changed and enriched the field of primatology.

During her 55-year research study, she defied scientific convention by giving the Gombe chimps names instead of numbers, and insisted on the validity of her observations that animals have distinct personalities, minds and emotions. She has harnessed the power of the feminine, instilling such into every aspect of her work – from her research studies to her global work through the Jane Goodall Institute and Roots & Shoots program, which aim to raise awareness and action for endangered species and vulnerable habitats.

Dr. Goodall has transformed the epistemological framework of how we study primates, and has exemplified immeasurable ecological integrity. She will forever be a leading voice in the environmental movement worldwide.

If you haven’t heard the exciting news yet, she is our keynote speaker at Emerging Live this year in San Francisco, and we hope you’ll join us to share in the energy of this legendary woman!

2. Julia Butterfly Hill

In 1997, Julia Butterfly Hill stormed onto the environmental activist scene in Northern California with her courageous 738-day protest living in an old-growth redwood tree, nicknamed Luna. This incredible act of civil disobedience saved the tree from being cut down by the Pacific Lumber Company and resulted in the raised international awareness for sustainable forest management techniques and the importance of establishing safeguards to protect old-growth trees.

Today, Hill continues her work as an activist, motivational speaker, and founder of the Circle of Life Foundation, a non-profit that trains community leaders to enact social change. Her invincible spirit is illustrative of the immense power that the feminine holds, and the tenets of her legacy – love, courage, devotion – are of immense significance and have made the environmental movement undeniably stronger.

“You, yes you, make the difference.” ~ Julia Butterfly Hill

3. Frances Beinecke

As the former president of the Natural Resources Defense Council, Frances has worked tirelessly across political spectrums to strategically develop and execute the organization’s program of work; focusing on curbing global warming, protecting our oceans and endangered ecosystems, developing a clean energy future, addressing toxic chemicals, and greening our global economy.

Beinecke has been instrumental in igniting our global discourse on climate change. She was appointed in 2010 to the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling by President Obama. She co-authored The World We Create: A Message of Hope for a Planet in Peril. She is the recipient of the Audubon Society’s Rachel Carson Award, and her environmental stewardship has been honored by numerous other environmental entities. She is an incredible woman and a force to be reckoned with.

4. Winona LaDuke

Winona LaDuke is an environmentalist, social activist, economist, speaker, professor, and writer. She is Indigenous with Ojibwe ancestry. She began her career in education on the White Earth Indian Reservation in Northern Minnesota, and soon realized the injustices that many American Indians, especially women, faced, which led her to found the Indigenous Women’s Network.

She is also the founder of White Earth Land Recovery Project, which fights for the retrieval of 837,000 acres of land to their original American Indian owners. Passionate about Native Environmentalism, she leads Honor the Earth, a non-profit that raises awareness and funding for environmental injustices–such as climate change, renewable energy, and sustainable development.

Bold, brazen, and unrelentingly dedicated to our earth, Winona LaDuke is a leading global voice on environmental issues and sustainability for  American Indians and Indigenous Peoples and communities everywhere.

5. Dr. Sylvia Earle

A National Geographic Society Explorer-in-Residence, Dr. Sylvia Earle (dubbed “Her Deepness” by the New Yorker, “Hero for the Planet” by Time magazine, and an “environmental badass” by us at Emerging Women) is an oceanographer, explorer, author, and lecturer.She has extensive experience as a field research scientist, government official, and director for corporate and nonprofit organizations, and is the former chief scientist of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

In the 1960s she fought to join male-only expeditions, and has since clocked 7,000 hours of diving, several of which were to record breaking depths. In addition to her PhD. from Duke University she has 22 honorary degrees, has penned more than than 190 publications, and speaks all over the world, focusing on preserving oceanic biodiversity in the wake of climate change.

Thanks to Dr. Earle and her fearless curiosity we know more about our oceans today than ever before. Her lifetime of work has enriched us with a deeper understanding of how to live sustainably and symbiotically with marine life, and our oceans are healthier because of her commitment to environmentalism.

“The only thing that men can do down there that women can’t is grow beards.” ~ Dr. Sylvia Earle on gender equality and deep sea diving

6. Lois Gibbs

Environmentalism claimed Gibbs, perhaps before she could claim it. In 1978 Gibbs discovered that her son’s elementary school in Niagara Falls, New York, was built on a toxic waste dump. Investigations revealed that her entire neighborhood, named Love Canal, had been constructed on top of this toxic site. Lois took to her neighborhood and organized a grassroots movement and battled for years against state and federal government.

After years of fighting, nearly 1,000 families were evacuated and a massive cleanup of Love Canal began. Gibbs’ efforts led to the creation of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, a superfund within the US Environmental Protection Agency which is utilized to clean up toxic waste sites throughout America.

Lois went on to to form a grassroots environmental crisis center, the Center for Health, Environment and Justice, where she currently serves as Executive Director. Love Canal is considered one of the nation’s worst environmental disasters, and Gibbs’ fearless heart and feminine leadership has transformed the way the US handles toxic waste sites, and for that, our communities are healthier and safer.

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7. Peggy Shepard

Peggy Shepard is arguably the most important proponent of environmental justice issues in communities of color in the country. She is founder of WE ACT for Environmental Justice, a non-profit she created in 1988 to improve the environmental health and quality of life for communities of color in New York City.

Shepard also serves as an investigator for Columbia University’s Children’s Environmental Health Center and is working to open partnerships between researchers and clinicians and local community members to increase environmental health education and outreach.

Shepard was the first female chair of the National Environmental Justice Advisory Council, a position she held from 2001-2003. She is the recipient of numerous awards including the Heinz Award for the Environment, the Jane Jacobs Medal for Lifetime Achievement, and the Susan B. Anthony Award from the National Organization of Women. She remains extremely active in the environmental justice field and lectures often at universities nationwide. Her environmental consciousness is one of integrity and is an amazing leader with a passion for fairness and justice for underrepresented communities that is unmatchable.

 

8. Laurie David

Laurie David burst onto the environmental stage in 2006 with her Academy Award-winning film An Inconvenient Truth. The film received international acclaim and is considered to be a catalyst for significantly increasing global awareness of climate change and for reenergizing the environmental movement. She serves as a trustee on the Natural Resources Defense Council, is the founder of the Stop Global Warming Virtual March, and the creator of Earth to America!, a film raising environmental awareness with a comedic stance.

David is heavily involved in public education and advocacy campaigns, and is involved in lobbying the automotive industry and Congress to increase fuel efficiency standards for vehicles with her creation of the Detroit Project. Laurie David is a leading voice in the environmental movement and has utilized her unique position in the entertainment industry to promote and raise awareness of global environmental issues, amplifying participation and the accessibility of environmentalism.

“Everybody has to look at his or her own footprint and do the best they can. It’s not about being perfect, it’s about doing something.” ~ Laurie David

Know a woman who is making a difference for the environment? Let us know in the comments, or tweet at us @emergingw!

Anxious About Asking? – #emergingnow

Dear Friends,

Do any of you out there have the crazy habit of always trying to accomplish everything on your own? My hand is raised here because I am guilty of this a thousand times over. Well-trained in the masculine model of getting shit done, I used to be skeptical of collaboration because who would get the credit? How could I make sure my value would be seen?

In 2013, I launched Emerging Women with a Kickstarter campaign – another extremely challenging idea for me. I would cringe every time I sent out an update, or another post reminding people of the cause and the deadline. But while I was experiencing reluctance and shame, my advisors were pushing me to post more frequently, and even to reach out directly to individuals for help.

That advice went against everything I had learned growing up in upper-middle class Andover, Massachusetts: Don’t ask for money, it’s not polite to ask for seconds, accept what you are given, don’t be greedy, pull yourself up by your bootstraps, figure it out on your own, and above all, don’t EVER depend on other people for your success.

Somehow I had it in my brain that if I needed something, I must not be worth investing in. Don’t people want to invest in “winners?” People who are independently successful?

But I did as I was advised, and the more I reached out, the more I found amazing women who wanted to be involved, who wanted to help. In the end, I raised $55k in four weeks – and now I know that I could never have launched Emerging Women without this kind of collective support.

As a result of this experience, I have come to understand that I don’t want to go at it alone. That all those years of “pulling myself up by my bootstraps” left me depleted and more susceptible to self-doubt and self-criticism. When I reach out and co-create with the women in our network, I feel rejuvenated, inspired, and more passionate about my work.

“When I reach out and co-create with the women in our network, I feel rejuvenated, inspired, and more passionate about my work.”

I know I’m not the only one who’s investigating her relationship to asking. Amanda Palmer’s new book The Art of Asking looks into just that. It’s based on her experience as a trailblazing musician who redefined the industry with her ground-breaking Kickstarter campaign (still the highest funded music project on that platform). By reframing “asking” as an opportunity for collaboration and co-creation, by leveraging her huge and tech-savvy fan base, and by receiving support directly from the people she makes the music for, Amanda Palmer found a way to sidestep the middlemen who overrun the music industry. Her campaign (which asked for $100,000) closed at almost $1.2 million. Boom.

I hope you’ll tune in to this week’s Grace&Fire podcast as we dive deeper with Amanda Palmer on The Art (and Power) of Asking. I’d love to hear your feelings!


Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

PS – Early Bird tickets to see Dr. Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Dr. Tererai Trent, Brené Brown and more are available NOW. Get yours before they’re gone!

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How do you view the art of asking? Share your insight with the tribe in the comment section.

It Doesn’t Have To Be Hard – #emergingnow

Dear Friends,

Have any of you out there felt that you need to work really hard, climb high hills, carry big stones, and develop callouses on your hands in order to make big things happen? I have. Truthfully, I don’t remember achieving anything of note without really digging in and putting in some serious dedicated effort.

As a rule, I am suspicious of any approach that touts short cuts to getting what you want – affirmations, manifesting techniques, get rich quick groups. In my experience, when we really apply ourselves to any pursuit in life, we learn, grow and develop a wisdom that cannot be replicated by mere statements. I tend to respect perseverance, tenacity and weathered hands over glossy tales of being in the right place at the right time.

And yet when I came across this chapter in Vicki Saunders‘ book, How To Think Like A SheEO, I was totally blown away: It Doesn’t Have To Be Hard. Wow. Instantly, I wanted to franchise that sentence – I saw bumper stickers, t-shirts, retail stores, a travelling SUV. “It doesn’t have to be hard.” Say it. It does a number on you.

This is what I love about Vicki – she recommends that we lead by leveraging what comes naturally to us. By focusing on what we are masterful at we can increase our levels of success without increasing our levels of stress. 

For me, the “hard” is not in the work itself (I am a Capricorn, I like to work hard!), but in the emotional exhaustion that comes with trying to do everything by myself – the learning curve, the top-line execution, the progressive leadership, the cash-positive business, the social impact, and so on. We all set high bars for ourselves, but must we tackle all of this by ourselves? 

I, for one, am ready for a new model. One that is based on true connection and authentic relationships. For example, if you are at a networking party, focus on developing relationships with people you really connect with. You might end up in deep conversations with only two people, but then you later ask them to introduce you to their friends.

Choosing this instead of “working the room,” passing out your cards and not remembering who you spoke to at the end of the night? Hells yes! Easy, right? 

When we connect with others as we reach for the stars life becomes easier – and the opportunities multiply. We learn faster, and we find the ropes we need to help us climb those high hills. But best of all, we are nourished – not depleted – by the shared human experience of striving. And that is not hard – it’s aaaahhhh.

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

PS – The $100 Early Bird discount for March Power Circles ends on Wednesday at midnight! Register HERE  to be matched into a group of women specially tailored to accent and compliment your desire to take your business to the next level (spaces are limited).

 

 

Vicki Saunders – Think Like A SheEO

Unleashing, Unhooking and Understanding – EWLive14 Souvenirs

Super Early Bird Tickets are On Sale for EW Live 2015 in San Francisco!

How do you keep it in the “ahhhhhh” zone? Tell us below:

Unleashing, Unhooking and Understanding – EWLive14 Souvenirs

As we transition into the second month of a new year, it feels like time to start reaching back and pulling those soulful souvenirs from EWLive14 into the forefront of our consciousness again.

In this ongoing series, we’ll share some of our favorite moments and memories from the weekend, and we invite you to do the same. You never know who needs to hear the words that resonated so strongly with you. As all of the Emerging Women Live speakers would agree, it’s crucial to your emergence to share your voice and have an impact on the tribe.

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“Women are natural connectors. This our time. The bridges have been built. Now it’s time to connect. ~ Chantal Pierrat”

Sera Beak

In All Fears and Trembling Boldness

Sera Beak shared her personal journey of not only living her truth, but speaking it in her own voice. “We ache to be self-expressed, to be authentic, to totally let ‘er rip,” she says, “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 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.”

As the Harvard-trained scholar found herself on the fast-track to fame, she struggled with squaring the messages she was receiving from her publicists with the messages she was receiving from her deepest self. As marketers tried to groom her speaking voice (which she self-describes as sounding like a chipmunk on speed) to be more “powerful,” she could feel the authenticity and impact of her talks losing potency.

“The most important part of my message IS my shaky, struggling voice,” she says in her trembling, yes, but 100% Sera voice.

“Your voice is a treasure. Don’t bury it, share it.”

And these words, beautifully unadulterated by public speaking shoulds and shouldn’ts, stamped an unforgettable image in our hearts that we can call on when sharing our unique expression with the world:

“Every time you speak your truth, a goddess tattoos your name across her belly.”

To feel the power of Sera’s soul voice for yourself, tune in to her EWLive14 talk “In All Fears and Trembling Boldness.”

Tara Mohr

Playing Big: Find Your Voice, Your Mission, Your Message

Women’s leadership expert Tara Mohr has seen a pattern among her brilliant peers.

“Women are sitting on their big ideas rather than sharing them, holding back their most provocative questions instead of asking them,” she says. “They are having a collective hallucination that they aren’t ‘ready’ for that bigger role or next step.”

Based on her recent book, Playing Big, Tara helps us learn to trust our instincts, “unhook” from praise and criticism and begin taking bold and wise action. Because when women play big, we change the world.

The bump in the road is often created by paying too much attention to what other people think. Does that sound familiar to you?

“We strangely learn to see women’s stories as how they’re perceived by others,” she says. The solution is to unhook from both praise and criticism as motivating factors while we carve out our space in the world.

If that sounds like something you could benefit from, do yourself a favor and watch the entire insightful presentation here:

Karen May

Reflections on Leadership

It’s no surprise that Karen May is the Vice President of People Development at Google. Her bouncy energy and enthusiasm is infectious, and her ability to really listen to those going through an emerging process is obvious.

What’s not so immediately apparent are her battles with failure and disappointment. If you can relate, you’ve got to hear about the “Disappointment-A-Day Diet” she started with her brother, where they trained themselves to be okay with disappointing people by promising to disappoint at least one person a day, no matter what.

“You have to be willing to disappoint.”

“I failed! Victory!” became Karen’s new cheer for herself as she learned to accept failure as a natural and helpful part of a fulfilling life. “You gotta find a way to make failure something you just step through,” she says.

“You gotta find a way to make failure something you just step through.”

“To emerge requires looking in the mirror and confronting the awful truth that you’re flawed,” Karen says, “and then digging really really deep to find the grace to go back out and say ‘tell me more,’ trusting that you’ll have the strength and support to hear it and to grow with it.”

Get ready to grin with Karen May here:

Agapi Stassinopoulos

Integration is one way that Emerging Women Live sets itself apart from other conferences. The feminine is all about the body, and so we take time to consciously connect with our bodies through dance, yoga and meditation.

We invite you to take a moment for yourself right now and let Agapi Stassinopoulos, sister of Arianna Huffington and author of Unbinding the Heart, lead you in a soothing and nourishing guided meditation.

“Give yourself permission to not wear Spanx on your heart.”

Just press play and let Agapi do the rest:

Keele Burgin & Power Circles

“You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.” – Mary Oliver

In this moving Emerging Short, writer, poet and memoirist Keele Burgin shares her revelation that she did not have to be her father’s definition of good, and how her Power Circle helped her harness that exuberant empowerment. What a testament to the beauty of women’s groups.

“We can fit in anywhere, but to belong is our soul’s request.”

Want to be there in person this year? Save big when you register now for Emerging Women Live 2015 in San Francisco.

Authentic Success in the New Year ~ with a little help from Liz Gilbert

If you’re like me, you get a warm feeling when you read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Facebook posts. She is a true role-model – not simply because she is a successful New York Times best-selling author, but because her she is constantly examining what success really means for her.

Whether she’s sharing her rituals, her favorite moments, her missteps, her lessons learned (and relearned) on the path to authentic success, she does it with an endlessly endearing sense of humor about herself that is so totally relatable it feels like it’s coming from a best-loved big sister.

As the clean slate of the New Year approaches, and New Year’s resolutions lists loom large on our social media feeds, I find tremendous comfort in the Grace&Fire podcast conversation we had before the first Emerging Women Live. Here are some of the things Liz said that stand out as I begin to gently shape my intentions for 2015:

“Curiosity is given to you, but your response is your job, and whether you take responsibility for that curiosity is your job.”

“I think that destiny is a kind of contract between human beings and the Mystery. Things are put before you, situations occur, and then you decide what’s going to be made of it.”

“Instead of forging forward into the vast forest with no idea where you’re going, go back a mile…

When was the last time something felt inspiring to you? When was the last time something was exciting to you? Return to that and then be gentle with it. Don’t take it by the neck and try to interrogate answers from it about what you’re supposed to do. Go back to that spot and sniff around. Put your hand on the ground, feel where it was warm, and see if there’s a little small overlooked clue near there that you somehow missed.”

“I think everyone is trying to play the grand, final scene of the big opera, but really, it’s the scavenger hunt that’s the most interesting…

Eyes on the ground, looking for that four-leaf clover, looking for that little scrap of paper hidden under the next rock, trying to find the clue. Because it is just a series of very small, almost invisible clues. And there’s a level of trust that develops where you just believe.”

Happy New Year, everyone! We wish you joy and an inner knowing on your path to authentic success!

To listen to the full Grace&Fire podcast conversation, just click here: “Elizabeth Gilbert – Creative Curiosity: Discovering Wisdom in the Details of Our Lives”

OR Download the EW App to listen to all of our Grace&Fire podcasts on the go:  For iPhone click HERE. For Android click HERE.

Want even more Elizabeth Gilbert? Join us for EWLive15 where she’ll share not only a keynote speech, but an intimate onstage conversation with Brené Brown. We can’t wait! Reserve your space in the inner circle now.

Brené and Liz – On Stage Together for EWLive15

Big news, Emerging Women –

Brené Brown. Elizabeth Gilbert. Talk about real feminine power. They’ve unfogged the lens through which I see the world, opening me up to the magic of curiosity and power of vulnerability. They are both insightful and hilarious, genius and genuine, and they bravely embrace their true selves as they model the journey to authenticity and meaning. In short, these women are my heroes!

If you feel the same way, set down your drink and get ready to flip out… cause we’ve got BIG NEWS.

We’re reuniting this dream duo for an intimate on-stage conversation at Emerging Women Live 2015 in San Francisco!

You may remember that Brené and Liz met for the first time at the innaugural Emerging Women Live in Boulder, CO. The connection was immediate, and there was air-karate to prove it. Their bond had a ripple effect that amplified the already intense “these are my people” feeling that bubbled in the room. And we want to be a part of that again.

So on Oct. 8-11, 2015 in San Francisco, Brené Brown and Elizabeth Gilbert will not only each share a fresh keynote talk with the tribe, they will also come together for a conversation that I WOULD NOT MISS FOR THE WORLD. Would you?

Tickets are on sale now, at a steal of an Early Bird price. Now’s the time to reserve your seat – the line-up is only going to get more phenomenal! I can’t wait to get the goosebumps of deep resonance with Brené, Liz, and every one of you.

Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat

PS – A ticket to Emerging Women Live 2015 is the IDEAL holiday present for a changemaking woman in your life. Just register with your information and send an e-mail to [email protected] explaining that the ticket is a gift. The most amazing. gift. ever.

Transformation + Courage – #EmergingNow

Dear Friends,

One of the articles in this week’s Juicy Bites round-up of EWlive14 blog posts quotes me as saying, “Committing to authenticity takes immense courage, and I don’t believe it can be achieved alone.” This pretty much sums up not only the reason I founded EW, but also the reason I was able to found EW.

Transformation and transition can be upsetting if we don’t have anchors to help us stay true to and in alignment with our selves. When things seem to be moving too fast, I need the support of my community – specifically my women’s circles. I love to see that a lot of you already know this: we see circles forming of EW participants all across the US, and we’ve had requests to start them in the UK, Australia, and other exciting locations.

As you know we’re rolling out our Power Circle program starting next month, and registration ends this Saturday. If you’ve been carrying dreams in your heart but haven’t had the support to realize them, keeping your ideas, passions and goals in flow with a circle and trained facilitator will work wonders. I hope you jump on this opportunity with us!

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

Power Circle Registration Ends Nov. 1st!

  Juicy Bites: Your Voices ~ Sharing Experiences

We’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line in the comments:

The Power of Circles – #EmergingNow

Dear Friends,

Emerging Women Live 2014 ROCKED THE HOUSE! I’m still processing all the magic and mojo that was flowing like crazy. Did you feel it? We have some beautiful images of the event that we can’t wait to share with you… and you can share yours with us, too (just upload them onto the EW App).

Some of you are already wondering how to keep this amazing momentum going, which is why I am so excited to announce that Power Circles are now open! Keep riding the wave of badassery by joining a monthly facilitated group of like-minded women taking the leap to create lives of deep meaning and impact.

I truly believe that there is no better place to create and manifest your vision than in an intimate circle of authentic and vulnerable women. Emerging Women exists because of the work that I’ve done in my personal Power Circle. I sincerely hope you join us – I can’t wait to see what we can all create when we give ourselves permission slips to do the work it takes to transform ourselves and our world!

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

 

 How do we look? Check out the NEW SITE!

 Just TWO WEEKS to join a transformative and amazing Power Circle!

 Did you blog about Ewlive14? Point us to your post – we might use it for our next Juicy Bites!

We’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line in the comments:

 

Impact & Inspiration from the Women We Love

As we get ready for EWlive14, it’s wonderful to remember how inspired and transformed we were by the inaugural EWlive in Boulder, CO.

That’s why we loved re-reading this blog post from Rose Caiola, founder of Rewire Me and Power Party New York speaker, recapping the many “a-ha” moments we experienced at that gathering. Check out the quotes and speakers that left a lasting impact on her here:

Emerging Women: 10 Women Who Rocked My Weekend.

Were you at EWlive13? Did you join us via Livestream? Add to the excitement for this year’s event by telling us who made your top 10 list in the comments below.

Just TWO MORE WEEKS, ladies! See you soon!

Watch: Our Beautiful Connect4Change Contest Winners

We are so thankful to have been able to team up with Threads Worldwide this year to create the Connect for Change Contest to send three emerging women on a life-changing trip to NYC for Emerging Women Live 2014.

The women chosen by our panel of judges stood out for their authenticity, open-heartedness, vulnerability, generosity and determination to empower themselves and others. Be sure to introduce yourself if you see them in NYC – these women are ready to ignite their gifts, and they have plenty of fire to go around!

1. Caryn Antos O’Hara – Grand Prize Winner, All-Expenses-Paid Trip to NYC and EWlive14

She is a shining example of the spirit of Emerging Women, and we are so so pleased to award her with an all-expenses paid trip to #EWlive14

Don’t let the picture of the needle scare you away – YouTube chose the most intimidating frame of the incredibly inspiring video for the thumbnail. For your daily dose of goosebumps (the good kind), watch Caryn’s winning Connect for Change video here: Continue reading “Watch: Our Beautiful Connect4Change Contest Winners”

Zainab Salbi – EWlive14 Featured Speaker

We are thrilled to tell you that Zainab Salbi has just been added to the stellar Emerging Women Live 2014 line-up of women living, working, and changing the world from a place of truth and alignment with themselves and with their powerful feminine values.

zainabsalbiewlive14promoZainab Salbi is an Iraqi-American humanitarian, entrepreneur, author, and media commentator who has dedicated herself to women’s rights and freedom. At the age of 23, she founded Women for Women International—a grassroots humanitarian and development organization dedicated to serving women survivors of war.

Her story is of how those women taught her to open up and live her truth, to live in alignment with herself, instead of bent to conform to others. She has done tremendous work for women worldwide, and we cannot wait to hear her share with us at Emerging Women Live.

“Allow yourself the space to become who you are. Allow yourself to express your creativity, to be true to yourself, and not do things out of societal pressure — do it all in pursuit of your truth.”

SUN0904 Zainab

Under her leadership (1993-2011), Women for Women International grew from helping 30 women upon its inception to more than 370,000 in 8 conflict areas, leading to a distribution of more than 114 million dollars in aid and loans. Her perspective on the role of women in war and peace times is progressive and profound, and we look forward to hearing more during her EWlive14 keynote, “Women, War and Peace.”

Salbi is also the author of three books: the national bestseller “Between Two Worlds: Escape from Tyranny: Growing Up in the Shadow of Saddam” (with Laurie Becklund); “The Other Side of War: Women’s Stories of Survival and Hope”; and “If You Knew Me, You Would Care.” Her books received support from iconic women writers such as Alice Walker and from several celebrities including Angelina Jolie, Meryl Streep, and Annie Lennox.

“As women, we must speak out, speak up, say no to our inheritance of loss and yes to a future of women-led dialogue about women’s rights and value.”

Sept_blog_imageIn 2010, President Clinton nominated Salbi as one of the 21st century heroes as featured in Harper’s Bazaar. Newsweek and The Guardian named her in the Top 100 list of Most Influential Women (2011) and The Economist Intelligence Unit identified her as one of most inspirational women (2011). Most recently, Fast Company included Salbi on the list of 100 Most Influential Women (2012), and PBS’ Makers series highlighted Salbi as one of the Women Who Make America.

Salbi has received extensive coverage in US, UK, and global media from CNN to The New York Times, Financial Times, and The Independent. Most notably, Salbi appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show 10 times. Salbi was also named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2007 and the Clinton Global Initiative Lead by President Clinton in 2010. Salbi is currently co-producing a documentary with Abigail Disney and Gini Reticker on the role of women in the Arab Revolutions.

Check out Half the Sky’s video of Zainab, where she names the single most effective place we can invest our money to insure a better future for the world:

Demystifying the Money: Women Investors & Investing in Women

>As we increase our leadership reach in all areas of our society, it is essential for women to understand how we can harness financial resources to help us actualize our vision for change.

At Emerging Women Live, we will be uncovering ways for women to jump into the existing investment structures, as well as ways to use our collective emerging power to create new possibilities around global money distribution and management.

Meet the members of EWlive14’s panel discussion “Demystifying the Money,” concerning the rapidly changing trends of women investors and business leaders – women who are earning, raising and investing money to reflect deliberate action and greater influence in our world.

1. Adaora Udoji – Interim President of News Deeply

adoraudoji

Adaora Udoji is currently Interim President of the award-winning startup News Deeply; specializing in single topic publishing while providing enabling technology to engage users on complex global issues. It’s her latest adventure in entrepreneurship after founding The Boshia Group, an international network of strategists, advisors, operational specialists, content developers and producers. The Group provides content and project management, as well as editorial and production frameworks serving clients such as startups, new media and tech companies; law and investment firms.

Adaora is also a lawyer and an award-winning storyteller who has worked across broadcast and digital media platforms: television, cable, radio, and the internet. Her roles have included corporate strategist, producer, on-air correspondent and anchor at Bloomberg, ABC News, CNN and public radio. The National Academy of Arts & Sciences recognized her reporting of the Afghanistan war. Essence Magazine named her one of the 25 most influential African-Americans.

In an interview with AlleyWatch, Adaora was asked, “If you could fix one thing in the startup ecosystem right now, what would it be?”  She answered, “To see it flooded with women, women and more women – both as entrepreneurs and investors.”

“To see it flooded with women, women and more women – both as entrepreneurs and investors.”

2. Amanda Steinberg – Founder of Daily Worth

Amanda Steinberg is the founder of DailyWorth, the leading financial media company for women. Steinberg is a thought­leader on the topic of women and money, working to advance women’s financial confidence and wealth.

Amanda is an engineer by training, a media executive by profession, and a serial optimist at heart. DailyWorth serves millions of women monthly via its daily newsletters and Website focused on money and career advice.

Amanda says, “The stories women tell themselves about money have perpetuated the idea of money being a source of stress for women … [We need to] see it as access to freedom and choices in our lives, not as a source of anxiety.”

“We need to see it as access to freedom and choices in our lives, not as a source of anxiety.”

3. Kesha Cash – Partner and Director of Investments at Impact America

edited-Kesha-Cash-PicKesha Cash is a Partner and Director of Investments at Impact America, an early-stage equity fund that invests in high growth companies that aim to generate real financial returns while improving the well-being of underserved communities and creating quality jobs in America.

Impact America Fund is the evolution of Jalia Ventures, a three-year minority-focused impact investing initiative Kesha launched and executed with the support and collaboration of leading investors, accelerators, community organizations, university programs, and industry experts across the country.

Kesha’s passion for social responsibility is apparent in her vision for the future: “We identify as one human race and deeply consider the impact of our actions on other human beings, the environment and future generations.”

“We identify as one human race and deeply consider the impact of our actions on other human beings, the environment and future generations.”

4. Fran Hauser – Angel Investor and Partner at Rothenberg Ventures

Fran HauserFran Hauser is an angel investor, digital media veteran and an advocate for women and kids. She is passionate about connecting people and inspiring change.

An active investor, Fran is a partner at Rothenberg Ventures. Before diving into the world of venture capital, Fran spent 15 years in the digital media space, holding President and General Manager positions at Time Inc., AOL and Moviefone. She played an integral role in the $400mm sale of Moviefone to AOL and in building PEOPLE.com into one of the most successful women’s websites.

Fran is a funder of the PBS documentary Half the Sky, Board Chair of GlobalGiving and an advisory board member of Helpusadopt.

Her advice as a mentor shows she knows the power of leveraging our feminine strengths. She says, “One of the best ways to get into a dream company is to develop relationships with the people who work there.”

“One of the best ways to get into a dream company is to develop relationships with the people who work there.”

 5. Vicki Saunders – Founder of SheEO

Vicki is a serial entrepreneur, passionate mentor and advisor to the next generation of change makers and leading advocate for entrepreneurship as a way of creating positive transformation in the world.

Vicki is founder of SheEO, a program for women entrepreneurs that supports the next generation of women-led social ventures to lead from their strengths on their own terms.

Vicki is also co-founder of WhatsNext, a global network of leading entrepreneurial talent focused on solving major challenges for business, education, NGOs and governmental institutions.

We very much agree with Vicki when she says, “We’re moving towards a post-hero world where the greatest challenges will require multiple people collaborating to solve.”

“We’re moving towards a post-hero world where the greatest challenges will require multiple people collaborating to solve.”

Miracle Makers – #EmergingNow

Dear Friends,

I first discovered Gabby Bernstein through one of her inspirational and empowering videos. With big, open eyes she leaned close to the camera and said in a fierce voice: If a book falls off the shelf in your office, even that has significance. I thought, “Wait – really?” I felt skeptical. I mean, what about Sigmund Freud: sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, right?

That was almost two years ago, before I was deep in the throes of launching a feminine-power based company. The more immersed I became in developing Emerging Women, the more I noticed special synchronicities, surprise connections, and creative collisions with the universe, all directing me in taking action and making decisions for EW.

When I am in tune with my feminine power of receiving, I see these signs more clearly, more frequently and with more trusting eyes. I am amazed at the feeling of ease that comes when I’m navigating with this sign-minded compass. Now I strive to be in constant communication with the universe – it’s so important to the process and unfolding of Emerging Women as a platform and a movement for women’s empowerment.

The more I pay attention, the more I am able to engage with what is coming next, and welllll…. let’s just say that miracles DO happen!


Big love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

gabbyG&f

LISTEN: Gabrielle Bernstein – Leading with Purpose and Presence

Share your emerging synchronicites with us in the comments!

Fellow Emerging Woman Nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year!

We are so pleased to hear that Brook Eddy, founder and CEO of Bhakti Chai, has been nominated for Entrepreneur of the Year by Entrepreneur Magazine.

Brook and Bhakti Chai have partnered with Emerging Women from the beginning, so we can attest firsthand to her desire to use the success she’s created to empower women and girls worldwide.

“Honored doesn’t quite grasp the thrill and mania associated with being a finalist in such a prestigious national contest,” Brook says. “It feels like just yesterday I was a struggling single mother wishing for a better life standing over my steaming homemade chai. Thankfully, a magical network of women colleagues and female friends encouraged me to take the leap of faith and have been supporting and inspiring me to manifest my dreams of being an entrepreneur ever since.”

“Thankfully, a magical network of women colleagues and female friends encouraged me to take the leap of faith and have been supporting and inspiring me to manifest my dreams of being an entrepreneur ever since.”twitter

Brook’s passion, vision and authenticity shine through in the video on her voting page. Watch here to get inspired by Brook’s commitment to sustainability, fair trade and giving back, and then vote for your fellow emerging woman for Entrepreneur of the Year 2014!

Meet Karen May of Google: #EWlive14 Featured Speaker

Need an example of feminine leadership principles in action? Meet Karen May, Vice President of People Development at Google. Her job description is steeped in feminine values like connection, collaboration, and compassion:

“I work with leaders, teams, and companies to help them be their best. I provide one-on-one leadership coaching to help people learn and grow as leaders. I’m a thought partner through tough challenges. I facilitate teams and groups through strategic planning, problem-solving, and conflict situations. Additionally, I develop and deliver leadership development courses that are experiential and practical.”

Karen oversees a global team that supports more than 34,000 Googlers in more than 70 offices in over 40 countries.

Her team implements a broad range of developmental offerings, including executive coaching, new hire onboarding, leadership development, and peer-to-peer instruction for Googlers of all levels, regions, and tenure. That means Googlers lead classes for others Googlers on whatever they’re passionate about, including their extracurricular skills like kickboxing or meditation.

“It’s a remarkable thing to put someone in teaching mode,” May says. “In a way, you get to see the best of them.” And by providing learning experiences that meet not just their career needs but also their life interests, May creates an atmosphere where Googlers can bring their whole selves to work.

“It’s a remarkable thing to put someone in teaching mode. In a way, you get to see the best of them.”twitter

With more than 20 years of professional experience as an organizational psychologist and a leadership coach, Karen knows firsthand the importance of connection in a corporate setting. In a recent New York Times interview, she says, “Where I ended up helping people often was in relationships with others, and understanding the impact they have on the people around them, cultivating some empathy, learning to listen, learning to give other people the spotlight, learning to work collaboratively.” She adds, “It wasn’t usually from a lack of willingness to do those things, but they didn’t have a strong muscle.”

Watch Karen flex her listening muscle in this clip from her awesome conversation with spiritual teacher and author Eckhart Tolle at the 2014 Wisdom.2.0 Conference in San Francisco:

Raising our Voices on Malala Day

This Malala Day, the global community came together to raise their voices for the rights of all young people to receive an education.

The annual awareness event was inspired by Malala Yousafzai, who was shot by the Taliban while advocating for the right to go to school. She celebrates her birthday each year by addressing people worldwide, offering the message that “No student, anywhere, should ever be the target of conflict of violence.”

This year, she travelled to Nigeria to make her speech, to renew the call to bring back the schoolgirls kidnapped by Boko Haram last April. In her speech, she said:

“We will not be silent while our Sisters in Nigeria and around the world are targeted in this war on education. Together we are stronger than oppression. We are stronger than violence. We are stronger than fear. We have a right to an education and we will prevail. We will see the return of our innocent sisters in Nigeria, and that they and all children will be able to go to school. We are stronger than those who stand in our way. Stand with us, and together we will win.”

Hear more from her in this op-ed piece for the Washington Post: Helping girls worldwide requires a united stand.

“Malala Day is not my day,” she says on her site malala.org. “It is the day of every girl and every boy. It is a day when we come together to raise our voices, so that those without a voice can be heard.”

Want to get inspired to raise your voice to empower women globally?

The UN Global Education First Initiative was launched on Malala’s birthday in 2013. Watch the #StrongerThan video the initiative shared for Malala Day:

To learn more about what Malala has been able to accomplish with the power of her voice, check out this Huffington Post article: On Malala Day, Prepare To Be Wowed Again By Her 10 Greatest Contributions To Humaity. Did we mention she just turned 17 this week?

Happy Birthday, Malala Yousafai!

What did Malala Day make you feel #StrongerThan?

Win a free trip to EWlive14!

We are thrilled to present this awesome opportunity for you to connect with over 500 visionary leaders at the transformative Emerging Women Live 2014 event in New York City.

Announcing the Connect for Change Contest, your chance to win an all-expenses-paid ticket to join Brené Brown, Arianna Huffington, Eve Ensler, Danielle LaPorte and more, October 9-12th at the Times Square Sheraton Hotel!

Entering the contest is easy…

Just click like on the Connect for Change Contest Facebook page to be entered to win weekly prizes from our generous sisters at Threads Worldwide.

You’ll be invited to enter Round 2, to let your true self shine and win tickets to the conference… or the fabulous Grand Prize of an all-expenses paid trip to New York for an unforgettable weekend with the women who are changing the world!

Emerging Women ignites and inspires visionary, revolutionary women who are ready to rock the business sphere with their conscious feminine leadership and alignment. Threads provides sustainable income opportunities for women worldwide because empowering women is the most effective way to strengthen families and build thriving communities.

TOGETHER, we are changing the world, and you can, too. Join us!

Brené Brown to Deliver Opening Keynote at EWlive14

We are thrilled to announce to you today that the one, the only, Brené Brown will be speaking at Emerging Women Live 2014 in New York City, Oct 9-12th.

Those of you who saw her at EWlive13 know what a tremendous blessing it is to have her back again this year. Brené’s has reshaped the way we think about our strengths with her groundbreaking research on shame, gratitude, authenticity and vulnerability. Her insight and compassion is evident in this conversation we had in 2013 for Origin Magazine. Soak up some classic Brené wisdom and humor, and then sign up to join us all in NYC to see what revelations she has for us this year!

Interview from Origin Magazine, photography from EWlive13 in Boulder, CO.

Chantal Pierrat: I want to start by saying thank you for being so real. Your work gives people permission to be themselves, and that’s probably the greatest gift that anybody could give.

Brene Brown: Thank you, that means a lot. We teach what we have to learn. It’s been an extraordinary journey that I couldn’t have done with not only the research participants but the community, the tribe that we’ve built of people who are also on this journey.

CP: Does community help with the work of vulnerability? Does it help us to become more vulnerable?

BB: I can’t even think of the right word, but it’s not “help.” It’s more like a prerequisite. I think connection is why we’re here, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and belonging is in our DNA. And so “tribe” and “belonging” are irreducible needs, like love.

“I think connection is why we’re here, it’s what gives purpose and meaning to our lives, and belonging is in our DNA.”twitter

CP: You started as a researcher. At what point did the researcher become the guinea pig, and how did that change your work, if at all?

BB: I’m still a researcher. The best way to explain it is that I trusted myself deeply as a professional, but I did not have a lot of self-trust personally. When I started learning all of these things about the value and the importance of belonging, vulnerability, connection, self-kindness and self-compassion, I trusted what I was learning—again, I know I’m a good researcher. When those things and wholeheartedness started to emerge with all these different properties, I knew I had to listen. I’d heard these messages before personally but I didn’t trust myself there.

I wasn’t really testing it on myself as much as I was learning from other people about what it meant to live and love with your whole heart, and then thinking, oh my god, I’m not doing that. Everything that these folks are saying that they’re trying to move away from, like comparison, perfectionism, judgement, and exhaustion as a status symbol—that all describes my life. It was more like a medical researcher studying a disease and figuring out he or she has it.

CP: You’ve got the credibility of your research, yet there’s something in your delivery that’s really opening people up.

BB: I love how you frame that, because it’s helping me understand myself better. Someone asked me very recently why I have 8 million views on TED —”your work resonates, what are you doing?” What I think my contribution is, what I do well, is I name experiences that are very universal that no one really talks about. That’s the researcher in me; that’s really part of being a grounded theory researcher—putting names to concepts and experiences that people have. Then I tell my own story. The two things that people really need to transform is language to understand their experience and to know they’re not alone. It’s the combination of the researcher-storyteller part.

“The two things that people really need to transform is language to understand their experience and to know they’re not alone.”twitter-logo-ew

CP: For people that are new to the concept of authenticity and playing around with vulnerability and courage, actually being themselves—is it something that can be practiced?

BB: It has to be practiced. It’s a practice for me every day, sometimes every hour of every day. It is an absolute practice. When I went into the research, I really thought that there are authentic people and inauthentic people, period. What I found is, there people who practice authenticity and people who don’t. The people who practice authenticity work their ass off at it.

“…there people who practice authenticity and people who don’t. The people who practice authenticity work their ass off at it.”twitter

It was so scary to me. Oh my god, that’s going to be a lot of work. I thought, You either have the gene or you don’t. It was scary. But it was so liberating: I thought, This is not predetermined—I get to choose. There are some days where I have to choose five times in a day. I had to make a choice when you called and the phone rang, whether I’m going to show up and be me, or whether I’m going to say what I think I’m supposed to say and get off the phone.

I had to choose this morning, when I could tell my husband was in kind of a rotten mood, whether I was just going to ignore it because I’m tired and it’s Friday and I’m packing lunches and getting kids to school and doing all this, or if I’m going to put everything down, start breakfast, and look at him and say, “Hey, something is going on. I want to hear about it.” It’s a practice. It’s about showing up. And sometimes I don’t do it. I almost always regret it, but sometimes I don’t do it. Sometimes I walk into a situation where I’m intimidated and I want to be liked and I want to fit in, and I don’t choose authenticity. And it’s always pretty miserable.

brene brown speaking

CP: What about the idea that we need to protect ourselves or have boundaries?

BB: Huge. One of the most painfully inauthentic ways we show up in our lives sometimes is saying “yes” when we mean “no,” and saying “no” when we mean “hell yes.” I’m the oldest of four, a people-pleaser—that’s the good girl straitjacket that I wear sometimes. I spent a lot of my life saying yes all the time and then being pissed off and resentful.

One of the things I talk a lot about in my work that I try to practice—which is really hard–is in those moments where we’re being asked to do things or asked to take over or asked to take care of something, we have to have the courage to choose discomfort over resentment. And to me, a huge part of my authenticity practice has been choosing discomfort and saying no.

“…we have to have the courage to choose discomfort over resentment.”twitter

On the flip side, I’ve also had to struggle with saying “yes.” Before I did this research and before I had my own breakdown and spiritual awakening around this work, my motto was, “Don’t do anything that you’re already not great at doing.” Which I think is the way the majority of adults in our culture live. Authenticity is also about the courage and the vulnerability to say, “Yeah, I’ll try it. I feel pretty uncomfortable and I feel a little vulnerable, but I’ll try it!”

CP: You’re talking about risk.

BB: That’s the whole idea behind Daring Greatly. That whole phrase, “daring greatly,” is from the Theodore Roosevelt quote that goes back to your original question of, what about the critics? And when I read his quote it was life-changing. “It’s not the critic who counts; it’s not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done the better. The credit belongs to those of us who are actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood. We strive valiantly and sometimes there’s the triumph of achievement but at the worst, we fail, but at least we fail while daring greatly.” That has really changed my life. Profoundly changed my life.

“We strive valiantly and sometimes there’s the triumph of achievement but at the worst, we fail, but at least we fail while daring greatly.” ~Theodore Roosevelttwitter

CP: Now it’s changing the lives of others.

BB: I think a lot of us are looking for the same thing. I feel very lucky to have a definitive moment where I know everything shifted in me, and it was the moment I read that quote. Because I thought, A. That’s everything I know about vulnerability. It’s not winning, it’s not losing, it’s showing up and being seen. B. That’s who I want to be. Courage is a value. My faith is the organizing principle in my life and what underpins my faith is courage and love, and so I have to be in the arena if I’m going to live in alignment with my values.

And the last thing is, I can’t be paralyzed anymore by the critics. My new mantra is, if you’re not in the arena getting your ass kicked on occasion, then I’m not interested in your feedback. You don’t get to sit in the cheat seat and criticize my appearance or my work with mean-spiritedness if you’re also not in the arena. Now, if you’re also in the arena and you’re putting your ideas out and you’re owning them and you’re saying “I disagree with you about this and that, I think you’ve got this wrong”—then not only do I invite that, I freaking love that. I love that. I’m an academic. I’m hardwired for a good debate.

CP: How would the world be different if we all learned to really embrace vulnerability and authenticity?

BB: We would solve a lot of huge problems that are causing massive suffering. Poverty, violence, homophobia, heterosexism, racism, the environment—all these things that are crippling us. We need big, bold, dangerous, crazy ideas to solve these problems. When failure is not an option, innovation and creativity are not options. In a highly critical, scarcity-based world, everyone’s afraid to fail. As long as we’re afraid to fail, we’ll never come up with the big, bold ideas we need to solve these problems.

“Poverty, violence, homophobia, heterosexism, racism, the environment—all these things that are crippling us. We need big, bold, dangerous, crazy ideas to solve these problems.”[inline]twitter

We have become this very fear-based culture, especially post-9/11. Fear is the opposite of love, in my opinion. I think there would be more love in the world. I’m not talking about rainbows and unicorns and ‘70s Coca-Cola commercials. I’m talking about gritty, dangerous, wild-eyed love. Radical acceptance of people. Belonging. A good, goofy kind of love.

CP: You’re on fire!

BB: [laughing] I’m having a passionate Friday, can you tell?

CP: You’re really funny – you make people laugh. I’m curious: how do you think humor fits into your work?

BB: I’m a huge fan of the poet Billy Collins. I heard him say, “Humor is the door to the serious.” I think that shame is a universal, paralyzing, painful emotion. The only universal language I know of that wraps up joy and gratitude and love is laughter. And so I believe in the healing power of laughter. I believe laughter forces us to breathe. I think laughter between people is a holy form of connection, of communion. It’s the way you and I look at each other and without words, say, I get exactly what you’re saying. And so, it’s important to me.

“The only universal language I know of that wraps up joy and gratitude and love is laughter. And so I believe in the healing power of laughter.”twitter

CP: It’s also disarming.

BB: I agree. The laughter that happens when people are truth-telling and showing up and being real – I call that “knowing laughter.” That’s what happens between people when we recognize the absurdity of the belief that we’re alone in anything. If there’s a feeling you have, other people have it. If there’s something weird about your life, other people have lived it. If there’s something kooky about your body, other people have that, too. We’re not alone. There’s some kind of tremendous relief in that and I think it can only be expressed in belly laughter. This tremendous relief that happens the millisecond we realize, it’s not just me. That’s what good laughter is about. It’s about knowing that you’re not alone.

>> Ready to laugh, cry and get mad goosebumps and inspired ideas together? Join us at Emerging Women Live 2014 in New York City, October 9-12th. Register now for savings!

Featured EWlive14 Speaker: Dominique Christina

dominique christina

If you were at Power Party Denver, Emerging Women Live 2013, or watched either via Livestream, then you know why we are absolutely, completely and totally thrilled to have the magnificent Dominique Christina – poet, artist, activist, educator, author – joining us again for Emerging Women Live 2014 in NYC.

Watch this quick clip to see what we’re talking about. Even her intro banter flows like a polished poem, gaining momentum and sweeping up the crowd before she reads a single word from her book:

Dominique Christina is a self-described “colored girl with stars for eyes.” She is also the ONLY person to hold two national titles for slam poetry at one time and is the ONLY poet in history to win the Women of the World Poetry Championship twice.

Her first full length poetry book, The Bones, The Breaking, The Balm: A Colored Girl’s Hymnal was released March 3, 2014 (Penmanship NY).

“I’m interested in telling the truth — my truth,” she says. “I’m interested in women recognizing the value of their voices and the urgency of their voices. I want to challenge old ideas.”

“When they ask who you are… tell them you are many mountains moving. Tell them you are wind song. Tell them they should not have to ask. Tell them you do not have to answer.”twitter

She raises her voice to challenge the old ideas of her mother and the ‘legs-crossed/always-appropriate’ women she had as templates for womanhood in this reading from Power Party Denver. Do you relate to her juxtaposition between mother and daughter’s versions of the feminine?

“I thought I was doing woman-ness wrong. That there was something flawed about how I showed up in the world,” Dominique says. But she goes on describe how she discovered later in life that “the business of womanhood – what’s so cool about it – is that it’s in your handwriting. It should not be prescribed.”

“The business of womanhood… it’s in your handwriting. It should not be prescribed.”twitter

A former 1996 Olympic Volleyball player, Dominique has over 10 years experience as a licensed teacher, holding double Masters degrees in Education and English Literature.

She conducts performances/workshops for all over the country for colleges, universities, nonprofit organizations, and conferences like the LOHAS forum in Boulder, Colorado. She does branding and marketing language for companies like Lotus Wei and Gaia. She is presently across the nation with Denice Frohman as Sister Outsider.

She’s also a mother. An awesome mother. What does a mother like Dominique Christina do when a boy on Twitter attempts to shame girls for menstruating, you might wonder? Then you must watch (or read the transcript below) “The Period Poem.” Period.

Dominique Christina: I have one more poem, in order to stay in time. Let me just say this: it is profane. Now, I have a daughter. She’s 13 years old. She’s taller than I am. She is absolutely persistent in her acts of rebellion against me. Which does not mean she’s a cut-up. It means that she loves pink, loves ruffles, love skirts, is not interested in athletics—all the shit that I’m not! So, for me, that’s rebellious. 

All right. When she started her period, we all knew it because she walked out of the bathroom and she looked stricken. I have four children; she’s my only daughter. Three boys, my god. So she walks out of the bathroom, she’s looking stricken, her brothers are confused. And I’m like, “Nashia, what’s up?” She told me she started her period, she was devastated, lip tremble, whole thing. 

So her brothers are immediately like, “Oh.” And she had this—she was grieving! And I needed to undermine what to me looked like shame right away. And it was familiar shame, because I remember being in middle school, having started my period and the boys found out, and then, you know, there was some shit. 

So I threw her a period party. It was cool. And all my friends came and everyone was dressed in red and all the food was red and all the drinks were red. And we raised the roof to her shedding uterus. It’s true. It’s really true. It’s a good template. Feel free to use it. 

And so it was working. It was working. She was operating in the absence of shame. When I was in Austin, Texas, for the Women of the World Poetry Slam this year, I got a screen shot from her. It was a guy on Twitter, and in 140 characters, he almost undermined all that work. So this is my message to him.
So dude on Twitter says, “I was having sex with my girlfriend when she started her period. I dumped that bitch immediately.”

Dear nameless dummy on Twitter: You’re the reason my daughter cried funeral tears when she started her period—the sudden induction into a reality that she would have to negotiate people like you and your disdain for what a woman’s body can do.

Herein begins an anatomy lesson infused with feminist politics because I hate you.

There is a thing called the uterus. It sheds itself every 28 days or so. Or in my case, every 23 days. I’ve always been a rule breaker. But that’s the anatomy part. I digress.

The feminist politic part is that women know how to let things go, know how to let a dying thing leave the body, how to regenerate, how to become new, how to wax and wane, not unlike the moon and tides, both of which influence how you behave. I digress. 

Women have vaginas that speak to each other. It’s true. By this I mean, when we’re with our mothers, our sisters, our friends, our partners, our menstrual cycles will actually sync up. My own menstrual cycle is mad influential. Everybody I love knows how to bleed with me. Hold on to that. There’s a metaphor in it.
But when your mother carried you, the ocean in her belly is what made you buoyant, made you possible. You had it under your tongue when you burst through her skin, wet and panting from the heat of her body—the body whose machinery you now mock on social media. That body wrapped you in everything that was miraculous about it and sung you lullabies laced in platelets without which you wouldn’t have no Twitter account at all, stupid. I digress.

See, women know the world better because of the blood that visits some of us. It interrupts our favorite white skirts and shows up at dinner parties unannounced. Blood will do that. Period. And if you are as unprepared as we sometimes are, it can get all over you and leave a forever stain.

So to my daughter: Should anybody be fool enough to mishandle the wild geography of your body, how it rides a red, running current like any good wolf or witch, well then, just bleed. Bleed, girl. Give that blood a biblical name, something of stone and mortar. Name it after Eve’s first rebellion in that garden. Name it after the last little girl to have her genitals mutilated in Kinshasa—that was this morning. Give it as many syllables as there are unreported rape cases. Name the blood something holy, something mighty, something written in hieroglyphs, something that sounds like the end of the world, something with crooked teeth and two fat fists.

Just bleed. Name it. Name it for the raw between legs and for the women who will not be nameless here. Bleed anyhow. Spill your impossible scripture all over the good furniture and then bleed on everything he loves. Period.

And really, what’s left to say after that?! We are so excited to have this fabulous woman join us in NYC for EWlive14. Will you be there getting goosebumps with us?

>>Ready to dive deeper with Dominique and the Emerging Women tribe? Join us at Emerging Women Live 2014 in NYC. Register now!

Ready to Play Big?

Dear Emerging Women,

With feminine leadership on the rise, brilliant women are stepping into new and powerful roles everyday. But, as we’ll hear in today’s Power Practice, brilliant women are the least likely to know when they’re ready for that next big step. Does that sound like you?

I think that a big reason we are so attracted to this emergence movement is because deep down we know that we’re ready: to launch a business, write a book, speak our truth, to lead in a way that feels authentic and real. But when we continue to measure ourselves against unrealistic standards for success, it can be hard to tune in to that soft voice of intuition that says “It’s time.”

I feel so grateful for this community, where visionary female leaders are sharing their wisdom freely in the hopes of elevating as many conscious women as possible. I want to live in a world where all women are able to Play Big in whatever arena calls to them. Even though we walk very unique paths, we must keep each other informed and inspired if we really want to change things – yo! You with me?

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat
Founder, Emerging Women

“I want to live in a world where all women are able to Play Big in whatever arena calls to them.”twitter

Ready to Play Big? Register now to receive this Special Gift for Early Birds: Tara Mohr’s Playing Big

Not sure whether you’re ready or not? This can help>> Power Practice #09: When You Don’t Feel Ready

Creative Curiosity: Discovering Wisdom in the Details of our Lives with Liz Gilbert

Elizabeth Gilbert is the beloved author of the 2006 runaway bestseller Eat, Pray, Love, which has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide. At the time of this interview, her TED talk on creativity has over 8 million views, and her latest novel, The Signature of All Things, has been celebrated as “the novel of a lifetime” by O Magazine. Liz was a featured presenter at the 2013 Emerging Women Live Conference, and the following is a transcript of the conversation we had just before that event.

Chantal Pierrat: There’s a lot of places that we’ll probably end up going today, but I wanted to start with your book since it’s sitting here right in my hands. You were so kind to send me an unproofed copy. I’ve had a chance to dig in a little bit, and I have to say, it’s kind of a page-turner.

Elizabeth Gilbert: Oh, I’m so glad it’s making you turn the pages. That’s what I want. I want you to sprain your wrist turning pages with this book. [Laughs]

CP: Yes, I’m definitely falling down the rabbit hole. But it’s interesting—I’ve not read your fiction. I’ve read, obviously, Eat, Pray, Love, which had such a big effect on me. I’m curious to hear more about how this process was for you, not really writing about yourself. In the last two books, you’ve been writing memoir style. How did this feel?

EG: Well, it felt like a homecoming. That would be the word that I would use, that popped into my mind. It’s true, you’re not the only person who hasn’t read my fiction! [Laughs] I started out as a writer of fiction many years ago, and the only thing I ever wanted to be my whole life, my only dream as a writer, was to write short stories and novels.

So my first book was a collection of short stories and my second book was a novel. I was well on that path, and then my life fell apart, as anybody who’s got $10 to buy a paperback of Eat, Pray, Love knows. And I ended up veering very sharply into this world of confessional memoirs that, of course, I do not regret having done at all. It’s been an extraordinary encounter with myself and with readers. It’s just been an amazing phenomenon.

And then after that came Committed, the follow-up, but 12 years had passed and I hadn’t written a word of fiction. And I just had that feeling that we get sometimes in our lives where I felt like, “If I drift any further away from this essential part of myself, I will never uncover it again. It’s time.”

“If I drift any further away from this essential part of myself, I will never uncover it again. It’s time.”twitter

And also, the luxury appointed to me by the success of Eat, Pray, Love was I could do something as whimsical as take three, four years out of my life to do a passionate study of 19th-century botany and write a novel about 19th-century botanical exploration. So the book is also kind of a celebration of this place I am in my life right now where I have the time to pursue my creativity as I’ve always wanted to.

CP: So the main character is this brilliant young woman named Alma, and she’s developing for me still because I’m still in the early part. But I do think of you when I see her, and I don’t know if it’s just because I’m looking for you.

EG: Of course I’m there, and I think my readers will find me all over the book. It’s definitely a continuation of my passion. It’s a book about passion and it’s a book about travel and about discovery of the self, the discovery of the world, and discovery of the self in the world. Those are my themes that I’ve been looking at for a long time in a lot of different ways.

Alma is—the thing I love most about her is that she’s driven by a huge, towering lust for knowledge and for learning. Certainly in that, we are familiar. I really wanted to write a book about a woman whose life is directed by a craving to learn. I feel like that’s a character who we just don’t see enough in literature. And it’s somebody who I feel like I know, and somebody I feel like I am, and somebody who I think a lot of us feel like we are.

“I really wanted to write a book about a woman whose life is directed by a craving to learn. I feel like that’s a character who we just don’t see enough in literature.”twitter

CP: So The Signature of All Things—I’m curious how you came upon that title.

EG: The “signature of all things” is actually a theory that was posited in the 16th century by a quite eccentric German mystic, who’s also a plant enthusiast, named Jakob Boehme, who came to believe that God had hidden in the design of every plant on earth a clue as to the meaning and use of that plant. So, for instance, the simple way to describe would be that walnuts, if you open them up, they look like a brain, and walnuts are very good for headaches. And then sage leaves are shaped exactly like the human liver, and sage is very good for liver aliments.

So it was this idea, this compassionate gardener—God—wanted people to find their way to the clues hidden in the plants that would benefit us. It’s a lovely, kind of medieval mystical theory and it was well, well out of date by the time my characters in my book come along. There’s a lot of holes. [Laughs] A lot of leaves look like livers, and if you ate many of them, you would die.

You know, it’s one of those theories where he came up with a theory and tried to make the science fit to it. And my book is sort of about the opposite. My character is a real scientist who studies the world and deducts her theories after her study. However, she does fall in love with a man who still believes in that theory who’s also a botanist.

Liz’s fans send her pictures of their copy of SOAT from around the world.

And in a way, every single character in the book, all of them revolving around the world of plants, they’re all looking for the signature of all things in some different way, whether it’s scientifically or artistically or in the world of commerce. They’re trying to find the clues in the plant world to better their own life.

CP: What I love is that you are a great connector. You take us on a tangent, and yet it comes back around really beautifully to another piece. It’s not a hanging thread. It always ties back.

EG: Yes. Without a doubt. Thank you for saying that because I feel like the novels that I love—and I do love 19th-century novels. I love Jane Austen and Dickens and Trollope and Elliot. That whole gang, they’re my favorite. And I think that the mastery that they had is that they knew exactly, from the first minute of the story, where they were going and where they were taking you. And you know when you’re in their hands that you’re not going to get abandoned on the side of the road, which sometimes happens in contemporary novels where you’re like, “How’d we get here? I’m stuck here now!” [Laughs] “And I don’t think either me or the author has any idea where we’re going.”

So I wanted to have that same sense of leading the reader on a journey and saying, “It’s OK, you can trust me. We’re going to go on this together and we’re going to come back on the other side and we’re going to have a really amazing experience in the middle.” I’m hoping that’s what the book will convey.

“It’s OK, you can trust me. We’re going to go on this together and we’re going to come back on the other side and we’re going to have a really amazing experience in the middle.”twitter

CP: Do you feel that, in your own life, you have that same sort of philosophy as you do in your writing style, where you trust everything actually does have a purpose and will cycle back?

EG: I do! [Laughs] I do. And it is magical thinking, right? Cynics and realists of all stripes would object to that idea, but it also does seem to be the case. It’s been shown now, even in scientific and sociological studies, that the people who are the most resilient and the people who seem to have lives of the richest quality are the ones who believe that there is some sort of a purpose to their life.

And I do think it’s kind of your job, if you’re lucky enough to have shown up in this world, to figure out what your purpose is. What are we doing otherwise, right? We’re just waiting. We’re just killing time. And from earliest consciousness, I just didn’t want to live in a waiting room. And in that regard, I’m very much like Alma, my character, as well. She’s definitely a purposeful young woman who, you will see, becomes a very purposeful middle-aged woman and an extremely purposeful old woman.

CP: So the tangents that life takes us on—it’s a dance between creating your own purpose and letting it unfold and believing in the seemingly randomness of it. You want both

EG: Yes. When people have asked me if I believe in destiny, I absolutely do, but I think that destiny is a kind of contract between human beings and the Mystery—whatever you want to call “the Mystery” with a capital “M.” I just call it “the Mystery” because it’s easier. And the Mystery entails everything that happens in our lives. And I feel like destiny is sort of an open questions. Things are put before you, offers are made, situations occur, and then you sort of decide what’s going to be made of it.

Somebody asked me the other day if I felt like my husband and I, if our love story was destined. And I said, “No, I don’t think our love story was destined. I think our meeting was destined. We certainly could have blown it.” [Laughs] The invitation was presented, and then it was turned over to our care, and what came next was up to us. But we could have easily walked away from it.

And I’ve been in situations before, in love and in work and in relationships, where an offering is there, and for whatever reason, the participants are unable or unwilling to see through it and it goes away. I don’t think destiny can force you to do something that you’re not going to do.

CP: You have an incredible attention to detail. Robert Penn Warren is one of my favorite writers in this regard, and this book reminds me a little bit of that.

CP: It has that same sort of—it’s like time stops and there’s a micro focus. And yet, I always think, “Wow, Elizabeth Gilbert, she’s got such big vision.” It seems like you have a pretty good balance of those two things going on. I’m wondering if that’s ever a struggle for you.

EG: You know, I love that idea, thank you for pointing it out. I think that the big picture is in the details. And it’s not an accident that my character, Alma Whittaker, who’s a botanist, finds her way in the world through studying mosses, which are incredibly tiny and incredibly intricate and which have been largely overlooked.

“I think that the big picture is in the details.”[inline]twitter

Liz Gilbert in Wellington NZ (via her Facebook page)

And as a woman trying to make a name for herself in the botanical world, she discovers that there’s this huge universe right underfoot that everybody is literally stomping on. And that all the bigger botanists have made their name with bigger plants and flowers—you know, the orchidists and the people who study the great redwoods. But she can’t travel to those places. She doesn’t have that luxury to be able to take on those mega-floras.

But right in her backyard, there are probably 45 different varieties of moss growing on one boulder cropping, and she’s able to find an entire universe in that moss. And she’s actually able to ask the same giant questions about the origins of life itself through the study of these few boulders as the great men of her day are asking through the study of the cosmos and through evolution and through fossil records that they’re finding.

So all the answers are everywhere. It’s just that they’re in miniature for her because that sort of suits her life. And I also thought that was a big metaphor for women’s lives in general. I think for most of history, women have lived very rich, miniaturized lives. When you look at the artwork that women have done in Western civilization, it tends to be tiny. It’s needlework or it’s painting tea cups, it’s textiles, it’s tiny knots. Because women’s lives had been kind of compressed, unfortunately, into a smaller scale, and yet women bring their creativity to that small scale and make magnificent things on that scale.

“Women’s lives had been kind of compressed, unfortunately, into a smaller scale, and yet women bring their creativity to that small scale and make magnificent things on that scale.”twitter

So I thought it would be interesting to have a female character who does the same thing in the scientific world, and who reaches the same conclusions as the great men by doing that. So I do think in her life, and in our own lives, there’s tremendous greatness to be found in the very small and the very everyday.

CP: There was a Harvard Business Review study where they compared male and female professionals, and whether it’s true or perceived, women scored lower in visioning. Everything else was equal or higher than the men. The only score that they didn’t meet and were actually below men was the ability to vision.

EG: The big, big picture. And I think another thing that is the danger of that is, of course, a little myopia and also perfectionism. I think that it was really important to me to write a novel about a women with a towering intellect, and I really didn’t want it to be a story about a woman who was brilliant but nobody would listen to her because she was a woman. I just felt like that was an oversimplification and also didn’t honor the real lives of the real, incredibly respected 19th-century female botanists who I studied as I was working on the book.

But what I do find—and this is a huge generalization but I think it’s a point worth making—that a lot of times what holds women back in the world is this idea that they can’t put something forward until it is perfect. And we all know that has never stopped men. [Laughs]

“…what holds women back in the world is this idea that they can’t put something forward until it is perfect. And we all know that has never stopped men.”twitter

That’s the thing that I’m always trying to convey to younger women, to young artists, to young executives, to any woman I meet who’s entering the world at all. Don’t hold back your voice. Don’t hold back your ideas until they’re perfect because first of all, perfect doesn’t exist, and secondly, you’ll be overrun by people who are throwing out all sorts of stuff that’s half formed, and yours is 95 percent formed. You know, 95 percent’s good enough! Push it forward, put it out there.

Alma suffers from that level of perfectionism. And I think it’s probably one of the terrific saving graces in my own life that I actually don’t have a problem. [Laughs] I grew up with a mother who taught me from me a really early age that done is better than good. That was one of her mottos I grew up with. “Just finish it, just put it out there. It doesn’t have to be immaculate, it just has to be done.”

And I feel like that’s gotten me so far. That’s probably the reason I have six books instead of one. Otherwise I would still be editing that first one. I’m willing to throw stuff out there in the world. And I’m always trying to empower women to do the same.

“I’m willing to throw stuff out there in the world. And I’m always trying to empower women to do the same.”twitter

To be continued… You can listen to the recorded version of this interview HERE

>>Like what you’re hearing? Join us for an experience that will last far beyond the four days we spend together. Learn more here>>>

Embody your Feminine Power

Dear Emerging Women,

I am filled with gratitude for all of the touching responses we received to last week’s Mother’s Day letter. I feel filled with hope for the future when I hear the tribe on fire about raising awesomely integrated human beings – so thank you for reaching out and sharing your own stories with us.

What a great pairing we have for you in this week’s newsletter. So much of leading with the feminine has to do with embodiment, being tuned in and trusting the deep knowledge of our bodies. As a dancer myself, I am continually humbled by the power of the wisdom that comes through the somatic experience. If mainstream messages have you temporarily checked out of this great source of feminine power, take a few minutes in your day to listen to Power Practice #08 and let the wonderful LiYana Silver guide you back to your embodied truth.
And if you have any doubts about the potential of living your embodied truth, check out our feature on the magnificent Rha Goddess. The insights she has gained on her path are made doubly impactful by the lyrical beauty of her words. We are honored to have her as a speaker at next week’s Power Party New York. We hope you can join us!

Big love,

Chantal Pierrat
Founder, Emerging Women

“So much of leading with the feminine has to do with embodiment, being tuned in and trusting the deep knowledge of our bodies.”twitter

>>Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014.

From Starving Artist to Sustainable Revolutionary with Rha Goddess

To best support our tribe, we make sure that the speakers at our events have values that are truly in alignment with Emerging Women.

To say that Rha Goddess fits that bill is an understatement. When we watch Rha Goddess speak, when we hear her message of “embodying your truth” delivered in strong, feminine floetry, we get those goosebumps that signify connection at a core level.

Think you haven’t heard of Rha Goddess yet? Think again. She was an up-and-comer in the 90s hip-hop scene. She coined the term “floetry” that we used above. She worked with big names in the industry, and her influence on the genre can be heard in positive, powerful, political hip-hop to this day.

But Rha Goddess became disillusioned with the scene when the image of hip-hop artists started to shift to better sell shoes and soda, and she began seeing a destructive effect on the audience and community. She tells the story of her break-up and make-up with capitalism in the Tedx Talk below – a must-watch.

As she describes in the video, it took a lot of owning up to get over the romanticism of the starving artist and find a new way to heal her relationship with capitalism, society and herself in order to move forward. She had to “slow down, get real, woman up, and figure out the money,” as she puts it.

“Slow down, get real, woman up, and figure out the money.” ~Rha Goddesstwitter

Now she rocks the crowd in the name of social change as the founder of Move the Crowd, an organization which supports the next generation of entrepreneurs get the skills and information they need to lead authentically and effectively. Her mission to help people define their goals in the greater context of who they are as a whole person is resonating with people world-wide, and it resonates with us as well.

“It takes honesty, strength and courage to admit to ourselves what we really want — and then to go for it. Ultimately, we won’t feel successful until we do.”twitter

We are so excited to see her speak in person at Power Party New York. We hope you can join us, whether in-person or via free livestream.

Read more about Rha Goddess here: EW Power Party New York

>>Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014.

Mothers Who Rock the World

Mothers not only physically create us, they shape our ideas of the potential and possibilities available to us as we grow into our true selves. From creator to protector, healer to warrior, different representations of motherhood in our lives can serve to empower all of us during periods of emergence.

One of our favorite commentaries on all of the characteristics, both beautiful and strange, that the mother archetype can hold is Isabella Rossellini’s wonderfully weird Sundance series Mammas. We hope that you may enjoy it, and the profiles of our favorite mothers below, with the women in your life this Mother’s Day.

1. Artist Moms

Mica Angela Hendricks has a wonderful take on what it means to be a mother, exemplified by her ongoing series of portrait collaborations with her 4 year old daughter. “In sharing my artwork and allowing our daughter to be an equal in our collaborations, I helped solidify her confidence, which is way more precious than any doodle I could have done,” says Hendricks. In this blog post, Hendricks confesses that it wasn’t easy to relinquish control over her art, but was forced to when her daughter cleverly trotted out some old mommy-wisdom: “We might have to take it away if you can’t share…” Read the whole story here.

“Those things you hold so dear cannot change and grow and expand unless you loosen your grip on them a little.” ~ Mica Angela Hendricks[inline]twitter

Other cool art moms: Annie Leibovitz, who made children a priority later in life after creating a wildly successful career as a photographer; Laurie Simmons, mother of Lena Dunham and inspiration for Dunham’s film Tiny Furniture.

2. Mothers to the Masses

What does a hell-raiser have in common with a saint? In the case of these two women, they both channelled the mother archetype, albeit two different aspects of it, in order to uplift those in need.

Mother Teresa’s seemingly bottomless well of kindness and service inspired many young people to dedicate their lives to helping others. Her work with the poor and needy earned her the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979.

“Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” ~ Mother Teresatwitter

While Mother Teresa calls to the caregiver in all of us with her lifetime of compassion and service, Mary Harris “Mother” Jones inspires the mother in each of us who can fight like a lioness to protect those who cannot protect themselves. Mother Jones was a 19th century labor leader who, rather than dwelling on her personal tragedies, worked tirelessly to organize for worker’s unions. She famously said, “I’m not a humanitarian, I’m a hell-raiser.” She remained an active protector for the working class well into her 90s. Her legacy is that of a mother’s stubbornness and tireless pursuit of what is right.

“Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living.”~ Mother Jonestwitter

 3.  Moms in the ‘Biz

We love actress, writer, producer, bazillion time Emmy award winner and mother Tina Fey’s refreshing take on “having it all.” Her 2011 book Bossypants approaches the subject of her anxieties about working outside the home with humor and honesty. She and fellow comedian Amy Poehler regularly use their sharp wit to skewer the double standards for working parents, as seen in this fun round-up of quotes over at HuffPost Parents.

“You go through big chunks of time where you’re just thinking, ‘This is impossible — oh, this is impossible.’ And then you just keep going and keep going, and you sort of do the impossible.” ~ Tina Feytwitter

Other moms we love in showbusiness: Wanda Sykes, whose OWN special Herlarious puts female comics in the spotlight; Angelina Jolie who recently wrote a beautiful op-ed piece about her decision to have a mastectomy.

4. Activist Moms

Following the birth of her daughter, Christy Turlington Burns suffered postpartum hemorrhage. The complication was quickly dealt with by her midwife and OB, but not all women have access to the same resources as we do in this developed country. As Melinda Gates says in last week’s Time’s 100 Most Influential People, “Christy’s realization that her life and her baby’s turned on the luck of geography inspired her to take action.” She founded Every Mother Counts to take action against these preventable deaths by addressing the main barriers to maternal health.

“…let’s extend that sentiment not just to our moms throughout the year, but to other women.” ~Christy Turlington Burnstwitter

Another mother making progress for women’s rights: Cecile Richards, daughter of Ann Richards, mother of three, and President of Planned Parenthood.

5. Moms on Mothering

Michelle Obama, First Lady and self-titled Mom-in-Chief, is clear about her priorities. When making the transition into the White House, her main concern was to support her daughters. But this mama’s power is not just reserved for her own babies. Her Let’s Move campaign to end childhood obesity aims to empower families all across the nation. Watch her team up with comedian Will Ferrell in this hilarious video about the movement.

“I am an example of what is possible when girls from the very beginning of their lives are loved and nurtured by people around them. I was surrounded by extraordinary women in my life who taught me about quiet strength and dignity.” ~ Michelle Obamatwitter

We also love Dr. Shefali Tsabary‘s books on conscious parenting. Check her out on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday on OWN, May 18th.

6. Moms in Little Moments

Whether our actual moms, or the mother figures we find on our life’s path, it’s the moms we see day in and day out, through good times and bad, during both the special times and the mundane moments who are often the most powerful sources of inspiration. Listen to Your Mother is a series of live staged readings in celebration of Mother’s Day. In 32 cities across the nation, mothers, daughters, husbands, sons, grandparents and grandchildren gather to share their stories of motherhood. Check in all week for this year’s performances, or dive in to the archives. Don’t know where to start? Try Kris Adam’s take on the body of a mother here.

“By meeting them, by knowing my children, I have become something powerful and essential. I am no longer a question.” ~ Kris Adamstwitter

We are excited to start a conversation and learn more from you, dear emerging women. Let us know, with a comment below, what qualities of motherhood inspire YOU? Who are some of YOUR favorite moms?

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014.

EW Power Party Seattle, June 5, 2014

Emerging Women is hosting another fabulous Power Party on June 5th, this time in Seattle at Impact HUB. If you can’t make it in person you can still participate via Livestream by signing up below. Please note that all tickets must be purchased in advance.

About:

Power Parties are authentic networking events that aim to bring together brilliant women ready to influence real change in the world through “the how” of what we do. Power Party Seattle is designed to be a comprehensive event that 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 performance and groove. The line-up for this event is awesomely inspirational – featuring Jennifer LoudenShasta NelsonJensine LarsonSara YaoStacey Sargent, and Camille Bloom — all successful visionary leaders, entrepreneurs, and creatives who are trailblazing a new way of influencing positive change in the world. Expect authentic sharing of what makes these women tick and how they were able to achieve uncompromising success by living the truth of who they are. 

Register for Emerging Women’s Power Party Seattle HERE

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Speakers:

Jennifer Louden

Jennifer Louden is both a personal coach and social commentator, who has taken the concept of “comfort” and self-care, and made these essential concepts irresistible and essential to women around the world. Jennifer is a cultural visionary, harnessing her extraordinary ability to recognize women’s comfort as both a fundamental need and an innate desire. Jennifer is an established media favorite, known for her humor, honesty, and ability to deliver tangible tips and heart-expanding insight with grace and passion. As a best-selling author of The Woman’s Comfort Book and 5 other titles, she draws on a wealth of stories and experience to regularly enliven blogs, radio, TV & magazines like Woman First, Self, Woman’s Day, Health, Yoga Journal, Whole Living, Good Housekeeping, Shape, and Ladies Home Journal. Jennifer’s media appearances have included Oprah, MSNBC, CNN, and close to a hundred news shows in most major markets. She’s hosted her own radio show on Sirius, been a monthly columnist for Body+Soul (now Whole Living), enjoyed numerous satellite radio and TV media tours, and has been a major presence on the web since 2000. She is a leading spokeswoman for finding your center and creating a healthy life in the midst of the busiest life, and then extending that healthy living to your world through social change. She believes: Self love+world love = wholeness for all. Learn More>>>


Shasta Nelson

Shasta Nelson, a female friendship expert, is the Founder and C.E.O. of GirlFriendCircles.com–the female friendship matching site in 35 cities across the U.S. and Canada where women of all ages go to make local friends, and is the author of Friendships Don’t Just Happen! The Guide to Creating a Meaningful Circle of GirlFriends. She is regularly appearing in the media offering her expertise on such subjects as creating new friends, learning how to to forgive our friends, social media’s impact on our friendships, and the characteristics of healthy friendships. A few of the TV shows she’s been on include The Today Show, Katie Couric’s Show, The Early Show, and Fox Business. She’s relied upon by writers and reporters from such magazines as Cosmopolitan, Essence, Parents, More, Redbook, Good Housekeeping, and Glamour, and for such newspapers as The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle. Her spirited and soulful voice can also be found at ShastasFriendshipBlog.com and in her Huffington Post column where she regularly contributes on relationship health. She also teaches, lectures, and hosts Friendship Accelerator events in her hometown of San Francisco and throughout the U.S. Learn More>>>


Jensine Larson

Jensine (Yen-See Nah) Larsen is an award-winning social media entrepreneur, international journalist, and speaker. At age 28 she founded World Pulse – a digital media network connecting women worldwide and bringing them a global voice – after working as a freelance journalist covering indigenous movements and ethnic cleansing in South America and Southeast Asia. Today World Pulse is powered by 60,000 women from 200 countries, many who are using internet cafes and cell phones from rural villages and conflict zones, collectively improving the lives of 2.2 million people. After successfully launching a print version of World Pulse magazine, in 2007 Larsen turned her eyes to the future of communications technology in the developing world. She pioneered an interactive global women’s newswire where women worldwide – including those using internet cafes and cell phones from rural villages and conflict zones– can speak for themselves to the world and solve global problems. Most recently, Larsen has launched a new program that is training women in digital empowerment and citizen journalism that is fostering a network of vocal women leaders from some of the most forgotten regions of the world. Today women from virtually every country in the world are connecting through World Pulse and producing a multiplier effect of change. Women previously unknown by the global public are having their stories picked up from World Pulse by the BBC, CNN, the UN, and the Huffington Post and beyond.  Learn More>>>


Sara Yao

Having coached and developed more than 3,500 leaders in six countries since 1998, Sara Harvey Yao specializes in the area of Executive Leadership and Ego. Sara’s clients refer to her as the “Ego Whisperer” and appreciate her precise ability to hone in on the root cause of leadership challenges and quickly resolve them.

Companies know any leader working with Sara will gain immense self-awareness, expand their influence and create a more consistent and compelling presence. In fact, Sara’s coaching skills are favored by countless executives from leading companies – among them Microsoft, T-Mobile and Outerwall (formerly Coinstar/Redbox).

Whether working one-on-one with clients, as a team facilitator or as an inspiring speaker, Sara is deeply committed to guiding clients to clarity about behaviors, ego tactics and communication styles that hamper conscious leadership.  Learn More>>>


Stacey Sargent

Stacey is an inspiring, energetic and authentic facilitator, coach, speaker and author – and the CEO of Connect Growth and Development.  She is an advocate of bringing humanity back into the workplace.  She has held positions over the last 20 years in evolutionary industries performing leadership, strategic and design vision roles in business, accounting and finance, consulting, client relations, software design and development. Stacey paired her degree in Business with a Masters in Applied Behavioral Science to create the “work love of her life”.

Her approach is about whole-person intelligence – partnering the logical with the creative, the rational with the emotional, our brain and our body. She helps people make the connection between their inner and outer selves so they can bring all their superpowers to any endeavor, in work and life.

Stacey is the author of Inner Critic, Inner Success: Claiming Your Own Success While Taming the Critic. She aspires to do more of the work she loves with more fantastic organizations, helping them discussWhat Really Matters.  Learn More>>>


Camille Bloom

Seattle-based, Gibson endorsed musician Camille Bloom has performed at premiere venues in nine different countries including Canada, the US., Germany,  Netherlands, England,  Denmark, Belgium and Ireland. Combining percussive guitar and a voice that can “purr and wail” (Victory Review), “Camille’s music can make even the rain dance.” (Mike Galaxy – Indy Hits promotion).  The powerhouse singer/songwriter  has been said to sound  ”like Ani Difranco dipped in maple syrup”. (Spokane Inlander).

In the last nine years, Camille has had songs licensed for use in twenty one shows on a variety of channels including MTV, E! and Oxygen. Additionally, she has completed over 30 national / international tours and has had her music played on over 400 major and college radio stations throughout the U.S. and Western Europe. She also charted on the European FAR (Freeform American Roots) Charts in 2009 with other music greats Bob Dylan, Steve Earle and Iron & Wine. She won the “Best Female Indie Artist” at the Ladylake Music Awards in 2010 – and was listed in the top 100 Indie Artists by Music Connection Magazine.

In addition to touring full time with club dates and festival appearances, Camille takes time out of her schedule to direct a Rock N Roll camp for kids in Seattle – and she also makes regular stops at youth centers – performing and talking to kids about using positive outlets such as music to cope with life’s struggles. Learn More>>>

 Reserve Your Spot at Emerging Women Power Party Seattle HERE!

Check out an Emerging Women Power Party in action:

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014.

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EW Power Party New York, May 22, 2014

Emerging Women is hosting another fabulous Power Party on May 22nd, this time in New York City at WeWork Lounge. If you can’t make it in person you can still participate via Livestream by signing up below. Please note that all tickets must be purchased in advance.

About:

Power Parties are authentic networking events that aim to bring together brilliant women ready to influence real change in the world through “the how” of what we do.

Power Party New York is designed to be a comprehensive event that 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 performance and groove. The line-up for this event is awesomely inspirational – featuring Rha GoddessMeggan WattersonWokie NwabuezeJenny Blake and Rose Caiola — all successful visionary leaders, entrepreneurs, and creatives who are trailblazing a new way of influencing positive change in the world.

Expect authentic sharing of what makes these women tick and how they were able to achieve uncompromising success by living the truth of who they are. 

Register for Emerging Women’s Power Party New York HERE.

[ew-in-the-loop headline=”Sign up to stay in the loop for Livestreaming of our regional events!”]

Speakers:

Rha Goddess

Rha Goddess is a world renowned performance artist, activist and social entrepreneur who uses her artistic and motivational talents to heal, transform and inspire. Goddess’ work has been featured in international compilations, forums, and festivals and she has received rave industry reviews from Time Magazine, Essence and The Source, among others.

In her 30+ year tenure as a creative organizer Goddess has worked on issues of racial justice and equality, electoral politics, offender aid and restoration, mental health and youth & young women’s empowerment. Honors and awards include, Meet the Composer, Essence Magazine’s Top 30 Women to Watch, the National Museum of Voting Rights Freedom Flame Award, the Herb Alpert Hedgebrook Prize and being a US Cultural Envoy to Rwanda.

In her newest venture, Goddess combines her hard earned business savvy with her longstanding passion for social change to create Move The Crowd, LLC a professional development and entrepreneurial training company dedicated to teaching Conscious Urban Entrepreneurs how to “Stay True, Get Paid and Do Good.” Learn More>>>


Meggan Watterson

Meggan Watterson is the founder of REVEAL, an organization that spiritually empowers women to connect to the love within them, reclaim their bodies as sacred, and become soul-led agents of change in the world. She facilitates The REDLADIES- a women’s spirituality group in NYC where women come together to encourage each other to find, hear, and to follow the courageous and audacious voice of their soul. (Some break bread together, REDLADIES break dark chocolate. Smile.)

To Meggan, being spiritual is less about learning something new and more about remembering what we have always known. She believes that getting spiritually naked is about having the courage to be radically open about the truth of who we are with no exceptions and no apologies, to reveal ourselves without judgment or shame.

She has her Masters of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School and a Masters of Divinity from Columbia University. Her work has been featured in media outlets such as The New York Times, Women’s Radio, Feminist.com, Feministing.com and StyleSubstanceSoul.com.  Learn More>>>


Wokie Nwabueze

Wokie NwabuezeWokie Nwabueze is a communication strategist and conflict resolution expert who teaches professionals how to develop the interpersonal communication skills, confidence and presence necessary for success and organizational health in business.

Wokie’s dynamic approach to communication blends her 20 years of experience as an executive coach, attorney, organizational ombudsman, mediator and communication strategist. She sits on the Board of the Scheinman Institute for Conflict Resolution at Cornell University and has taught conflict resolution, communication and negotiation courses and workshops for Columbia Law School, Princeton University, various fortune 500 companies, academic institutions and small businesses.

Wokie received her BA in International Relations from Wellesley College and her JD from Columbia University School of Law. She is a certified mediator, transformational life and executive coach, NLP practitioner and conflict dynamic trainer. Learn More>>>

 


Jenny Blake

Jenny Blake is a bestselling author, career and business strategist and international speaker who helps smart people organize their brain, move beyond burnout, and build sustainable, dynamic careers they love. With two years at a technology start-up as the first employee, over five years at Google on the Training and Career Development teams, and three years of running her own business, Jenny combines her love of technology with her superpower of simplifying complexity to help clients through big transitions — often to pivot in their career or launch a book, blog or business. Jenny is an active member of the Young Entrepreneur Council, and is based in New York City.

Jenny created her first website, Life After College, in 2005, then released a book of the same name in 2011 that was featured in Target’s 2012 graduation display. She has been featured on Forbes.com, US News & World Report, Real Simple magazine, and has spoken at major universities and top companies such as Columbia, TEDxCMU, Yale, Parsons, UCLA, Google, Intuit, KPMG and Best Buy.

Today you can find her at JennyBlake.me, where she explores the intersection of mind, body and business.  Learn More>>>


Rose Caiola

Rose Caiola is the founder of Rewire Me. She could have easily been defined by her success in the highly competitive world of New York City real estate, but she has ventured far beyond the boundaries of the business world. As well as being a real estate developer/property manager, Rose is a teacher, speaker, and expert practitioner of a number of disciplines that promote wellness—both those derived from ancient wellness wisdom as well as cutting-edge neuroscience.

In exploring the roots of well-being, she has become a Reiki master and an experienced practitioner of various yoga disciplines and mantra meditation. Rose has studied neuroscience, Tibetan Buddhism, and Chinese herbal medicine and received extensive training in neurofeedback, kinesiology, hypnosis, and Holographic Memory Resolution.

Along her path of discovery, Rose learned that people are often unaware of the many routes to optimum wellness. Her mission was accomplished when she launched Rewire Me in the spring of 2013, an instantly successful website community of seekers looking to heighten their mental, physical, and spiritual self-awareness.

Rose also works with Congressman Tim Ryan on initiatives involving mindfulness as a tool for helping children learn, war veterans heal from trauma, and corporate executives become more effective leaders. Learn More>>>


 Mahogany Browne

The Cave Canem Fellow is the Editor of the women’s anthology His Rib: Stories, Poems & Essays by HER and author of several books including her latest book of poems: Swag. She has released five LPs including the live album Sheroshima.

As co-founder of the Off Broadway poetry production, Jam On It, and co-producer of NYC’s 1st Performance Poetry Festival: SoundBites Poetry Festival, Mahogany bridges the gap between lyrical poets and literary emcee.

Her freelance journalism can be found in magazines Uptown, KING, XXL, The Source, Canada’s The Word and UK’s MOBO. She facilitates performance poetry and writing workshops throughout the country, focusing on women empowerment and youth mentoring.

She is the publisher of Penmanship Books, a small press for performance artists and owns PoetCD.Com, an on-line marketing and distribution company for poets. Mahogany is currently the slam host & curator of the Friday Night Slam Series at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe.

 Reserve Your Spot at Emerging Women Power Party New York HERE!

Check out the Emerging Women Power Party in action:

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So much gratitude for everyone in this AMAZING VIDEO!!

Check it out! Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Eve Ensler, Alanis Morissette – all our favorites are here, talking about Emerging Women Live. And so many power women from EWlive13 are featured, too. Are you in the video?

We are so humbled and grateful for the beautiful, thoughtful testimonies given by our tribe. Warm thank you’s and big, big love to you all! Let’s keep the momentum of this movement going! Let’s change the world!

About Emerging Women Live 2014:

Emerging Women Live aims to support and propel the emerging movement of women who are stepping up and changing the world. #EWLive14 is a one of a kind conference that helps women to harness the power of the feminine, rock the business world, and create a new paradigm for success. Join us in NYC for a truly extraordinary, one-of-a-kind event!

Join us for an experience that will last far beyond the four days we spend together. Learn more here>>>

Accessing Your Feminine Power with Claire Zammit

The article below is excerpted from the eye-opening keynote on Feminine Power Claire Zammit gave at Emerging Women Live 2013, and from my Grace & Fire podcast with her before the event. Claire is the co-creator of the Feminine Power training courses for women and co-leads a thriving learning community of hundreds of thousands of women throughout the world. She is a gifted and highly trained specialist in transformative education that gives her audience access to life-altering shifts, leading to embodied and lasting change. Read on to find out her definition of Feminine Power and why we all need it to make our destiny a reality.

 

“Masculine power is the power to create those things we can control and predict. Feminine power is the power to create those things that we can’t control.”twitter

 

CP: Six years ago, you made the decision to start trusting yourself and your abilities so that you could thrive in life. How did that decision come about?

CZ: I spent years of my life waiting to be “discovered.” I always felt like something was going to happen, or should happen, that was going to enable me to become all that I knew I could be. And I was very sad and confused when those opportunities never came.

And so late one night, by candlelight, I prayed for guidance. I knew I couldn’t just skip over this and continue on the course that I was on, and I didn’t know the answer, but I knew I needed to make a commitment to find out. And so, in the darkest hour of that dark night, I just surrendered, open, and I said, “Help, universe,” even though I doubted anybody was there listening.

And I had a very deep and powerful experience. It was almost like a mystical experience where I felt an inner voice say to me, “Claire, you have to have faith in yourself. And you have to believe that all of life is organizing around your success. Even though you don’t have any evidence for it, and even though you don’t know what to do, begin to make choices and take actions in your life aligned with a sense of faith.”

 

“You have to believe that all of life is organizing around your success.”twitter

 

So I went to sleep with that thought, and I woke up the next morning and I said, “Okay, what would I do if I really believed in myself and I believed that life was organizing around my success?” And immediately I had access to a very deep intuition that said, “Go and get an office space.”

It was kind of crazy because I’d just moved to LA from Australia, and I didn’t really know anyone, and I had given up my coaching practice 5 years earlier. But with my last $1,000, I went and I got an office space. And that’s how I met the woman who became a close colleague of mine, Katherine Woodward, and within a year we started teaching programs and creating courses together. And I met my husband and soulmate, Craig Hamilton, and the relationship that we share together is beyond anything I could have imagined.

I’m really so honored and grateful to say that having created a foundation of success in my own life, I began to fulfill on that dream of really standing for the global empowerment of women and girls. I wake up and I feel like I need to pinch myself because this outer life reflects the deeper possibilities that I always sensed, but I couldn’t quite see how to get there.

CP: Wow. So what happened?

CZ: I began to create my life from Feminine Power, and it really changed everything. And I know it can change everything for other women as well.

How many women in their clearest moments sense that they have gifts and talents that the world has never seen before and will never see again after they’re gone. And that even that they have a critical role to play in shaping the future of our world. And how many know exactly what that’s going to look like?

CP: There’s a big gap.

CZ: Yes, and this is significant. This yearning that’s waking up inside of us, it’s not just a desire to accomplish – to have a nice house, to have a nice car, to get married. What’s waking up inside of us is an impulse to actualize our higher creative potentials in service to something larger than ourselves.

 

“What’s waking up inside of us is an impulse to actualize our higher creative potentials in service to something larger than ourselves.”twitter

 

We don’t just want to have the relationship our parents had, we want to have the experience of intimacy that’s beyond that. We don’t just want to get a job, we want to express who we are and we want to develop our creativity and get it out of us in a way that impacts others.

We don’t just want to get more status or have more stuff. We want to become ourselves and create a life that reflects who we truly are. What we’re yearning for is our destiny: the greatest possibility of who we are in service to something bigger than ourselves. And the nature of destiny is that we don’t know what it looks like in advance, so it’s very hard to create a strategic plan to get there, or even put it on a vision board to be able to manifest.

So the system of power that we’ve been mastering as women over the last 50 years is actually a masculine system of power. It’s a power system that based on logical and linear thinking. So if you have a goal that’s predictable or controllable – you want to build a house, get a college degree – then the masculine power system is the way to go. The problem is, we’re no longer yearning to just accomplish goals. What we’re pregnant with are these higher possibilities.

We can’t get there with just a power system that’s based on analysis and logic. We need to have a power system that based on a much more intuitive, receptive, co-creative and feminine system. Masculine power is the power to create those things we can control and predict. Feminine power is the power to create those things that we can’t control.

 

“We need to have a power system that based on a much more intuitive, receptive, co-creative and feminine system.”twitter

 

CP:When you’re in a room with other women and see that maybe another woman is not living from a place of Feminine Power, do you reach forward and try and draw her out?

CZ: Well, that’s a great question. In our course, we have a whole new set of shared agreements that we teach about creating a culture of empowerment between women. And the point in which you can really partner to stand with someone and for someone is when they step forward in self-responsibility.

We can’t go into rescuing if that woman hasn’t yet said, “I’m committed to realizing the greatest possibility of who I am. And I’m standing to be responsible, to see myself as a source of my experience up until that point. And I am open to receiving support.” I think a woman has to step into that for the support to become really conscious and powerful and potent.

“I think a woman has to step into that for the support to become really conscious and powerful and potent.”twitter

I think generally speaking, we want to be finding ways to extend that invitation to women to actually step forth into that level of commitment, to stand for their own greatness. So I think rather than saying “Oh, I see you,” we want to mirror the possibilities. I think it’s, in many ways, so true. We want to mirror the possibilities. We want to reflect opportunities everywhere we go. We want to see and relate to the most powerful version of others.

And I think more than anything I want to encourage women to take that stand for themselves as a foundation for them being able to join other women in partnership, to be able to feed each other power. I think you can create a culture of empowerment between women when everyone’s stepping forward in self-responsibility as the price of admission for that.

“We want to mirror the possibilities. We want to reflect opportunities everywhere we go. We want to see and relate to the most powerful version of others.”twitter

To hear more from the amazing Claire Zammit, don’t miss her free webinar The Three Keys to Feminine Power on May 14th. Read more about what you will learn HERE. You can also see her in New York City, where we are so honored to have her back as a keynote speaker at Emerging Women Live 2014 in October.

About Emerging Women Live 2014:

Emerging Women Live aims to support and propel the emerging movement of women who are stepping up and changing the world. #EWLive14 is a one of a kind conference that helps women to harness the power of the feminine, rock the business world, and create a new paradigm for success. Join us in NYC for a truly extraordinary, one-of-a-kind event!

Join us for an experience that will last far beyond the four days we spend together. Learn more here>>>

Confirmed! Eve Ensler to speak at Emerging Women Live 2014 in NYC

We are proud to announce another exciting addition to the stellar line-up of Emerging Women Live 2014: Eve Ensler!

If you were at Emerging Women Live 2013 in Boulder, then you know how fortunate we are to have Eve joining us again in NYC. I don’t think I’m exaggerating when I say there wasn’t a dry eye in the audience by the time she finished her incredibly moving talk, “The Power of Voice.” EWLive veterans – am I wrong? She was powerful, graceful, vulnerable, courageous and DANCING her truth. We look forward to another breath-taking performance from Eve this year.

 

“An activist is someone who cannot help but fight for something. That person is not usually motivated by a need for power or money or fame, but in fact is driven slightly mad by some injustice, some cruelty, some unfairness, so much so that he or she is compelled by some internal moral engine to act to make it better.”

 

About Eve Ensler:

Eve Ensler, Tony Award-winning playwright, performer, and activist, is the author of The Vagina Monologues, which has been translated into over 48 languages, performed in over 140 countries, including sold-out runs at both Off-Broadway’s Westside Theater and on London’s West End (2002 Olivier Award nomination, Best Entertainment). Her experience performing The Vagina Monologues inspired her to create V-Day, a global activist movement to stop violence against women and girls which raises funds and awareness through benefit productions of her award-winning play The Vagina Monologues and other artistic works. In 2011, over 5,600 V-Day benefits took place. To date, the V-Day movement has raised over $100 million and educated millions. V-Day’s most recent global campaign, ONE BILLION RISING, galvanized over one billion women and men on a global day of action towards ending violence against women and girls in February 2013. Her latest book “In the Body of the World” (Metropolitan Books) — is a brave and beautiful examination of an illness, unlike anything ever written about cancer. She was named one of US News & World Report’s ”Best Leaders” in association with the Center for Public Leadership (CPL) at Harvard Kennedy School and one of “125 Women Who Changed Our World” by Good Housekeeping Magazine (2010). In 2011 she was named one of Newsweek’s “150 Women Who Changed the World” and The Guardian’s “100 Most Influential Women.”

a href=”http://www.eveensler.org/about-eve/” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>Read more about Eve Ensler HERE>>>

About Emerging Women Live 2014:

Emerging Women Live aims to support and propel the emerging movement of women who are stepping up and changing the world. #EWLive14 is a one of a kind conference that helps women to harness the power of the feminine, rock the business world, and create a new paradigm for success.

Join us for an experience that will last far beyond the four days we spend together. Early Bird tickets are available HERE until July 1st. Learn more here>>>

Juicy Bites: Living the Truth of Who You Are

“Find out who you are and be that person. That’s what your soul was put on this Earth to be. Find that truth, live that truth and everything else will come.” ~ Ellen DeGeneres

This week in Juicy Bites, we hear from:

  • Gloria Steinem, mother of feminist activism
  • Layla Shaikley, Muslim hipster
  • Yoko Ono, pioneering conceptual artist
  • Debbie Sterling, engineer and founder of GoldieBlox
  • Maysoon Zayid, comedian, actress and advocate

At the end of this post, we encourage you to join us for a conversation. This week’s Juicy Bites question for you, dear emerging women, is:

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1. Gloria Steinem – Feminist Activist via MAKERS

Gloria Steinem’s 80th birthday made for such a beautiful week of stories about feminism online. Watch Gloria talk about the beginnings of the movement and the momentum that led to her life of activism in this inspiring MAKERS profile video.

 

“In my heart I think the only alternative to being a feminist is being a masochist.” – Gloria Steinem

 

Continue Reading…

2. The Surprising Lessons of the ‘Muslim Hipsters’ Backlash via The Atlantic

Have you seen the #Mipsterz viral video yet? MIT Media Lab alumna Layla Shaikley made the music video to express her own experience as a young Muslim American. It’s awesome. And so is Layla’s reflective and insightful response to the mixed reactions the video received from the Muslim American community.

 

“I made a music video to share my own story as a Muslim woman in America. In doing so, I was expected to share every other Muslim woman’s story, too.” – Layla Shaikley

 

Continue Reading…

3. Yoko Ono show at Guggenheim shines light on pioneering conceptual artist via The Guardian

Yoko Ono is a woman who has never let public opinion steer her away from her personal truth. The artist, peace activist, and musician is unapologetically herself as she explores and experiments through her visionary work. Read this article for a vivid picture of Yoko’s charm, mystery, and mission.

 

“Most people didn’t want to know and I wasn’t about to explain about it. My art was different from what was considered as art. My idea was that maybe one day 50 years later or 100 years later people might discover it.” – Yoko Ono

 

Continue Reading…

4. GoldieBlox’s Debbie Sterling on Changing Gender Stereotypes and Taking Big Risks via Fast Company

When Debbie Sterling told her mother she wanted to study engineering, her mother said, “Ew.” Since then, Debbie has not only become a successful engineer, she has made it her mission to tackle the gender gap in science, technology, engineering and math. Have you seen the awesome Beastie Boys “Girls” parody video that went viral last year? That’s her, living her truth.

 

“We get fired up about these incredibly audacious goals, and what’s surprising is you can actually hit them. When you hit a goal like that, this whole thing becomes all the more believable, that what we’re doing is going to work.” – Debbie Sterling

 

Continue Reading …

5. A Gorgeous Woman Shakes Her Body On Stage… And The Crowd Goes Wild via Upworthy

Where has this woman been all our lives? We’d describe how Maysoon Zayid, disabled Arab-American comedian, is living the truth of who she is, but she does it so much better herself in this TED Talk. Watch it now!

 

“If a wheelchair user can’t play Beyoncé, then Beyoncé can’t play a wheelchair user.” – Maysoon Zayid

 

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Tell us who inspires you so that they can inspire the tribe, too! Join in the conversation with a comment below:

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014. Special discounts when you register before July 31st.

Power Practice #04: Crafting the Big Vision for Your Business

What does it look like when you’re earning money easily and effortlessly for doing what you love?

The answer may surprise you.Jennifer Lee, author of The Right-Brain Business Plan, shares with us “Crafting the Big Vision for Your Business,” a guided meditation that will help you form a stronger connection with the success and abundance of your future. 

Tap into your intuition and let your subconscious guide you as you dream big for your business with the awesome Jennifer Lee.

Play the Power Practice:

Jennifer Lee, founder of Artizen Coaching, is the award-winning author of The Right-Brain Business Plan. Her bestselling book has helped thousands of entrepreneurs worldwide grow their businesses authentically and creatively. She has more than 50 licensed facilitators who lead Right-Brain Business Plan® workshops nationally and internationally.  After spending 10 years climbing the corporate ladder at companies including Accenture and Gap Inc., she took the leap in 2006 to pursue her passions. Jennifer has been featured on ABC7 TV, Whole Living, Entrepreneur, and Family Circle magazines, and numerous radio shows, plus she co-developed a Circa Notebook with Levenger.

She received her coaching certification and leadership training through the prestigious Coaches Training Institute and holds a B.A. in Communication Studies from UCLA and an M.A. in Communication Management from USC. Jennifer lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and adorable beagle-mix. Jennifer was also a featured presenter at the 2013 Emerging Women Live Conference in Boulder, CO.

 

Want to hear more about the Right-Brain Business Plan? Listen to our Emerging Women podcast with Jennifer Lee now:

Power Practice #03: The Coin Oracle

Agonizing over a decision?

Kristen Wheeler, founder of The Native Genius Lab™, shares with us “The Coin Oracle,” a fantastic exercise that involves… YES! flipping a coin, but it brings up so much more than that.

It’s about applying principles of feminine leadership to the decision making process and allowing yourself to be receptive and openhearted. Kristen invites us to loosen up and bring some magic into our lives. Let’s do it!

Play the Power Practice:

 

“The Coin Oracle is an ordinary kind of practice that helps me bring a kind of magic that feels beyond me and also a part of me.”

 

strong>Kristen Wheeler is a business consultant and executive coach who believes that workplaces should be arenas where people thrive while creating amazing results. For more than twenty years, she has offered expert guidance on matters of IT, strategy, and leadership for clients like Arthur Andersen, comScore, WhiteWave Foods, and eBay. After starting her career with Accenture as a masked and depressed CPA and software developer, she started researching better ways to apply human effort. Her work is deeply informed by three parallel paths: the trenches of business, advanced degrees in psychology and mythology, and her own journey to develop a work-life she loves.  She has synthesized this unique blend of experience into strategies she calls Native Genius™. Native Genius Strategies help people and their companies understand, identify and apply an innate uber-intelligence to solve tough issues and get bottom-line results, while also cultivating meaning and verve. Kristen was also a featured presenter at the 2013 Emerging Women Live Conference in Boulder, CO. 

Want more intuition-honing practices? Try LiYana Silver’s “Listening to Your Body Wisdom.”

Power Practice #02: Writing the Bones – The Art and Power of Engaging with Your Silence

Struggling with writer’s block?

Dominique Christina shares “Writing the Bones,” a compassionate practice to help us improve our relationship with the written word. This Power Practice will teach us how to accept and creatively transform our silence, our inner critic, or simply put, to engage writer’s block. Dominique patiently guides us through the process of “dealing with silence before words happen.” 

Dominique teaches us how to fight and own our insecurities by giving them a seat at the table, by allowing the silence to be a collaborator and an instigator of creativity. This is truly a fascinating exercise that will help you stretch your imagination.

Play the Power Practice:

“Attach a wider lens to your silence as a way to conquer it.”

A writer, performer, educator, and activist, Dominique has won four national titles in the three short years she has been competing in slam, including 2012 Women of the World Slam Champion and 2011 National Poetry Slam Champion. Dominique is presently the only person to have held two national titles at one time. She conducts writing workshops nationally for various organizations, colleges and universities and is presently enjoying a rigorous tour schedule with Denice Frohman as Sister Outsider.

Her first full length poetry book, The Bones, The Breaking, The Balm: A Colored Girl’s Hymnal will be released March 1, 2014 (Penmanship NY). Her second book, a radical look at the creative process, Writing In Fire, is set for publication in 2015 by Sounds True. Dominique was also a featured presenter at Emerging Women Live 2013 & 2014.

Want to see Dominique perform “The Period Poem” at Emerging Women Power Night? It’s a must-see.

20 Powerful Women of 2013

This has been an exciting year for women. We are finally working together to shift women’s roles in society not by compromising our femininity, but by using our true qualities to make real changes in the workplace, in our communities and in the world. It’s been especially gratifying knowing that we, Emerging Women, participated in generating change. I am so inspired by all the women that passionately and courageously are creating a new life for themselves, one that is fully expressed and supported by the truth of who we are.

Change for women today is palpable. It is so important that we take meaningful action when called to participate in this movement. We are more ambitious, more daring, more unified and more determined to create impact by following our true calling, by speaking up, by crossing barriers, by unlearning habits, by being vulnerable, by welcoming failure as part of success and by expressing our true feminine power. And even though there is a lot more to accomplish and fight for, we want to celebrate the women who inspire and motivate us. You’ll find below a list of 20 trailblazers from different industries and different parts of the world who are creating change in the world.

And don’t forget, if you are committed to expressing your unique gifts to the world, you’ll find a community of like-minded women ready to help you succeed at Emerging Women Live. Also, we are curious to know who inspired you this year, so please leave a comment below and share with us the women that motivate you to create real change in the world.


1. Malala Yousafzai ― Activist, Writer

 

Malala Yousafzai, a 16 year old Pakistani girl, who a year ago was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman, fearlessly continues to fight for the right of girls to go to school. Her courage and determination has ignited a global movement of girls who are standing up to speak for themselves. In October 2013 she published a bestseller, I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban, a formidable story of courage and the power of one person’s voice to inspire change in the world.

“We realize the importance of our voices only when we are silenced.”― Malala Yousafzai

2. Sheryl Sandberg ― COO, Facebook

 
Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer at Facebook, is best known for her best-selling book Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. Published in March 2013, the book opens a new, refreshing conversation on feminism in the workplace. The “Lean In” phenomenon focuses on encouraging women to pursue their ambitions, and shifts the conversation from what we can’t do to what we can do.

“We can each define ambition and progress for ourselves. The goal is to work toward a world where expectations are not set by the stereotypes that hold us back, but by our personal passion, talents and interest.” ― Sheryl Sandberg

3. Shonda Rhimes ―  Screenwriter, Director, Producer

 
Shonda Rhimes is best known as the creator, head writer, and executive producer of the medical drama television series Grey’s Anatomy, but she is also the creator of the TV-series, Scandal, which made her one of the most influential women in Hollywood. Olivia Pope, the main, non-stereotypical character in Scandal, is one of the strongest females in prime time TV.

“Most of the women I saw on TV didn’t seem like people I actually knew. They felt like ideas of what women are.” ― Shonda Rhimes

4. Jill Abramson ― Executive Editor, New York Times Co.

 
Appointed in 2011, Jill Abramson become the first female executive editor in the paper’s 160-year history. Joining the New York Times in 1997 as the Washington bureau chief and managing editor, she now sets the editorial agenda at the nation’s newspaper of record. Abramson was also named as one of the 500 most powerful people in the world by Foreign Policy Magazine.

“In one’s relationship with dogs and with a newsroom, a generous amount of praise and encouragement goes much better than criticism.” — Jill Abramson

5. Park Geun-hye ― President of South Korea

 
Park Geun-hye became South Korea’s first female president this year, making her the first woman head of state in modern history of Northeast Asia. She was elected with the nation’s highest turnout rate in 15 years. Park presides over the world’s 15th largest GDP at $1.15 trillion.

“Different times need different types of leadership.” ― Park Geun-hye

6. Virginia Rometty ― Chairwoman and CEO of IBM

Virginia Rometty proves that the IT world is not a boys-only club. She heads up IBM, the biggest computer company by revenue ― bigger even than Google, Tencent or Yahoo.

“I learned to always take on things I’d never done before.” ―Virginia Rometty

7. Diana Balmori ― Landscape and Urban Designer, Principal at Balmori Associates

 
Diana Balmori  is redefining how natural and built environments interact by creating smarter and more responsive city parks. Diana was named one of the most creative people of 2013 by Fast Company.

“Landscape architecture is an agile tool kit for dealing with the complexity of the city.” ~ Diana Balmori

8. Angelina Jolie ― Actress, Philanthropist

 
This year Angelina Jolie sparked controversy by bravely opening up to the world about her choice to undergo a voluntary double mastectomy because of her high risk for breast cancer. Her Op Ed piece in The New York Times made Jolie not only one of the most powerful women in Hollywood, but also in the world. Also she received  an honorary Oscar reserved for those ”whose humanitarian efforts have brought credit to the industry.”

“Life comes with many challenges. The ones that should not scare us are the ones we can take on and take control of.”―Angelina Jolie

9. Wendy Davis ― Lawyer, Politician

On June 25, 2013, Wendy Davis held an eleven-hour-long filibuster to block Senate Bill 5, legislation that would create new abortion regulations in Texas. The filibuster  inspired men and women across the country to rally for women’s reproductive rights. Davis is running for governor of Texas in 2014.

“My story, my personal story, is my story. I have the ability to make choices and I had opportunities that I was able to take advantage of in my life. Other women of course should be able to define their own destinies and this idea that the heavy hand of government should somehow come in and tell her how to do that is deeply resented in [a] state like Texas.” ― Wendy Davis

10. AM Homes ―Writer

AM Homes won the prestigious 2013 Women’s Prize for Fiction for her for her sixth novel, May We Be Forgiven. The Women’s Prize for Fiction was set up in 1996 to celebrate and promote fiction written by women throughout the world.

“For years everyone kept saying, ‘Who is AM Homes? Is AM Homes a man or a woman? Or is she trying to hide?’ Clearly I’m out, I’m a woman and I’m thrilled to win this prize.”― AM Homes

11. Eve Ensler ― Activist, Writer

Eve Ensler is the creator of V-Day, a global activist movement to stop violence against women and girls. Earlier this year she incited a global flashmob in which every country in the world participated. Ensler’s latest book, In the Body of the World, is a brave and beautiful examination of an illness, unlike anything ever written about cancer. Ensler was also a keynote speaker at our national event, Emerging Women Live 2013.

“So much of life, it seems to me, is the framing and naming of things. I had been so busy creating a future of love that I never identified the life I was living as the life of love, because up until then I had never felt entitled enough or free enough or, honestly, brave enough to embrace my own narrative.” ― Eve Ensler

12. Hillary Clinton ―Politician, Philanthropist

Hillary Clinton is one of the most powerful women on the planet and a strong supporter of women’s rights. Her crusade for women continues with “No Ceilings: The Full Participation Project,”  which aims to put equality for women in the global civil rights spotlight.

“The great unfinished business of the 21st century is helping women and girls break through these ceilings and participate fully in every aspect of life once and for all.” ― Hillary Clinton

13. Elizabeth Gilbert ― Writer

Elizabeth Gilbert is unquestionably one of her generation’s most beloved memoirists. Her new book, published this year, The Signature of All Things, was praised by O Magazine as “The novel of a lifetime…”

“To be very clear: Creativity can ONLY coexist alongside Fear.  I have always lived a creative life, and I know that you can’t be creative without being vulnerable. And you can’t be vulnerable without experiencing fear.” ― Elizabeth Gilbert

14. Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu ― Entrepreneur

Ethiopian entrepreneur Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu is one of Africa’s most successful women. She built SoleRebels, a shoe company that pays fair wages to its employees and uses locally sourced materials such as organic, hand-spun cotton. She was able to turn SoleRebels it into an internationally recognized brand: the shoes have been carried in Urban Outfitters and Whole Foods, and this year, Alemu will open stand-alone boutiques in Germany and Sweden. SoleRebels has become a hugely successful, sustainable, truly world-class enterprise.

“I am always challenging myself ‘how do I continue to make soleRebels not simply the best footwear brand but the best company to work at, a place of transformative opportunity for our staff ?” — Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu

15. Oprah Winfrey ―Entrepreneur, Personality

America’s only African-American billionaire is finally celebrating  the success of once-struggling network, OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network, launched three years ago. Other highlights include Oprah’s co-starring role in The Butler (which is already generating Oscar buzz) and her memorable commencement speech at Harvard University.

“From time to time you may stumble, fall, you will for sure, count on this, no doubt, you will have questions and you will have doubts about your path. But I know this, if you’re willing to listen to, be guided by, that still small voice that is the G.P.S. within yourself, to find out what makes you come alive, you will be more than okay. You will be happy, you will be successful, and you will make a difference in the world.” ― Oprah Winfrey

16. Marina Abramovic ― Artist

 
Marina Abramovic, celebrated performance artist, embarked this year on an ambitious project to build a 33,000-square-foot center for arts called the Marina Abramovic Institute. The institute is is dedicated to the presentation and preservation of long durational work: performance art, dance, theater, film, music, opera, and other art forms whose performance exceeds six hours. The project was supported by a successful kickstarter campaign which raised $661,452. Among the supporters of  Marina Abramovic Institute are high profile pop culture icons like Jay-Z and Lady Gaga. Abramovic wants the new Institute to be a cultural laboratory. She explains:

“What you get is the opening of your mind. I’m not preaching any new religion; I’m ritualizing everyday activities. You drink the water. You count the rice. You sit in Crystal Cave. You lie in Levitation Chamber. You push yourself to a new level.” ―Marina Abramovic

17. Arianna Huffington―Editor-In-Chief, Huffington Post Media Group, AOL

 
Arianna Huffington has created a separate niche for herself on the personal and spiritual well-being circuit. The initiative The Third Metric: Redefining Success Beyond Money and Power focuses on a more sustainable definition of success, one that includes well-being, wisdom, and our ability to wonder and to give back.

“I love talking about my failures more than my successes because I feel that’s the most important thing I can teach—failure is an essential part of success, because these days no one has succeeded who hasn’t failed along the way.”― Arianna Huffington

18.  Reshma Saujani ―Political Entrepreneur

 
In 2010, Reshma Saujani became the first Indian-American woman (and the first South Asian American woman) to run for Congress. She founded Girls Who Code, a non-profit which aims to provide computer science education and exposure to 1 million young women by 2020. Their vision is to reach gender parity in computing fields.  Reshma is also the author of a new book entitled, Women Who Don’t Wait in Line which advocates for a new model of female leadership focused on risk-taking, competition and mentorship.

“It used to be that there was only one seat at the table for women and we would have to fight one another for it. Now, there’s no limit to how many women can make it to the top.”―Reshma Saujani

19. Angela Merkel — Chancellor, Germany

 
Angela Merkel who was just sworn in by the German Parliament to serve a third term as chancellor, ranked  #1 in Forbes’ Top Power Women and #5 in the top Powerful People in the World. She has served as ­Chancellor of Germany since 2005; the first woman in the position.

“When it comes to human dignity, we cannot make compromises.” — Angela Merkel

20. Sarah Hofstetter — CEO of  360i US

 
Sarah Hofstetter, a modern MadWoman, is the CEO of 360i US, a digital advertising agency selected as the Ad Age’s 2013 Digital Agency of the Year. She helped set up one of the first social-media practices at any agency, which now serves as a hub for social community management at 360i. Hofstetter was named Ad Age’s 2013 “40 Under 40” and was honored as a “Social Media All-Star” by the Social Media Society.

“We encourage brands to think about social media as a mindset instead of a marketing channel. Brands talk to consumers all day; whether it’s customer care, PR, advertising, event marketing or even human resources, it’s just a matter of translating that communication into conversations, and aligning those conversations with brand objectives.”

We are curious to know who inspired you this year, so please leave a comment below and share with us the women that motivate you to create change in the world.

Are you feeling a rising power inside of you that you feel must be expressed? Join us at Emerging Women Live 2014 in New York City and help us to spread the movement that is creating real change in the world.

 

Interview with Claire Zammit on Feminine Power

This is a transcript of my conversation with the powerhouse Claire Zammit. Claire is the co-creator of the Feminine Power training courses for women and co-leads a thriving learning community of hundreds of thousands of women throughout the world. She is a gifted and highly trained specialist in transformative education that gives her audience access to life-altering shifts, leading to embodied and lasting change. She is also a co-founder of Evolving Wisdom, a transformative education company listed as number 83 in Inc. Magazine’s 2013 list of top 500 fastest-growing, privately held companies in the nation.

Chantal Pierrat: Welcome, Claire.

Claire Zammit: Hi, Chantal. Great to be with you.

CP: I’m excited to be talking to you because I know that every time we get on the phone together, we end up talking about my favorite topic, which is feminine power.

CZ: Yes, absolutely.

CP: Well, maybe we should just jump in, and I know that’s the title of your upcoming book, and it’s the title of your work. 

CZ: We’ve been teaching a seven-week course on feminine power for the last four years, and we’ve had about seven thousand women participate in that, and hundreds of thousands more with our free events. It’s something that I’m really seeing as speaking to women’s experience at a very deep level. I think that’s what we connect with when we have our conversations. So I’m excited to be able to dive into it today, together.

CP: “Feminine” and “power.” They’re two very different energies, but together they totally make sense. And I’m just curious to see if you can start with defining what you mean by “feminine power.”

CZ: Well, I might just start, if I can, with a bit of a story that creates a little context for it. My teaching partner Katherine Woodward Thomas and the women that we were serving in the community, we had started in Los Angeles—we had a center for transformation, and we were coaching women and working with women.

And both of us were accomplished, successful women, as were the women we were serving. And we really noticed, in spite of having so much “power” in our lives, we both felt this very painful and confusing gap between the deeper potentials that we sensed for who we were as women, for the creative contribution, for the intimacy and connection of our relationships, and just for our overall experience of life. We couldn’t quite put our finger on what it was, and we found that women everywhere were having the same experience as us.

At the same time, we noticed that there was a yearning towards the feminine that was happening. We said, “This is really interesting. So why don’t we do a class so we can begin to explore what the feminine is?” And the first night of class, we listed these feminine qualities up on the board, and these masculine qualities up on the board—just common assumptions about the feminine: flowing, intuitive, receptive, surrendered, nurturing. And typical masculine qualities like logical, linear, hard, angular, penetrating.

And we looked at these different energies and these different qualities, and what we noticed was that we were hungry, as a group, as women, to experience these more feminine qualities. We were very drawn, but there was a collective fear that if we allowed ourselves to be scented in these qualities, that there would be a loss of power. So there was this idea that we were drawn to power, we’re drawn to this feminine, but it occurs like somehow there’s not power available to us.

We looked up the word “power” in the dictionary, and it said, “To do, to act, to accomplish, political force, might.” And it was like, “Gee, this sounds very much like the masculine qualities that we have up on the board.” And we realized—it was kind of a big awakening—that we as women, in the power system that we’ve been mastering over the last 50 years, have been in  more of a masculine version of power.

And so we just went, “Wow, I wonder what a feminine version of power would look like,” so that we could begin to create and source our lives from these feminine qualities. We made it our mission to find out how to access the more feminine version of power. And the interesting thing we found was that it speaks to a shift that’s happening, I think, for women where we have accomplished a lot—and certainly there’s a long way to go globally and in the United States. But there have been huge strides made over the last 50 years through feminism that the opportunity, the access to power and to freedom is so enormous.

“We made it our mission to find out how to access the more feminine version of power.”twitter

It’s a different kind of yearning that’s waking up inside of us where we don’t necessarily want to just achieve success, or we don’t want to necessarily just have power for power’s sake. What we see—and this was my experience, it was Katherine’s experience, it was the experience of the women in our community—is that what we’re yearning for is to actually create our lives as an expression of who we truly are and an expression of our deepest gifts. We want to realize our higher spiritual potentials, our potentials for our relationships, our larger creative contribution.

“What we’re yearning for is to actually create our lives as an expression of who we truly are and an expression of our deepest gifts.”twitter

And what we recognized and realized was that because that has to do with the flourishing of these higher potentials, you actually can’t create that kind of success in your life just with the masculine system of power. For that, we need to awaken this new system of power, which is more of the feminine system, and that’s really what we’ve been going into in all of our work.

So the masculine system of power is anything that’s predictable or controllable, and that you can create with a step-by-step plan—like building a house. You have a plan, you have a certain number of bricks, you have an infrastructure, you know how many people you need, and you can just execute the plan and be able to make it happen. So the masculine system is a wonderful system to use for anything that you can create in that way. If you want to get a rocket ship to the moon, the masculine system has been amazing. The miracles of science, the marvels of industry are incredible gifts of the masculine. It’s not that it’s wrong and bad, it’s just insufficient to create the things that we’re now most yearning for.

And feminine power is really the power to create those things that can’t be controlled: true love, intimacy, higher creativity, the realization of your spiritual potential, your creative gifts, being able to impact others. All of these things we need to be able to access with more of a feminine system of power that we’ve found is based upon the feminine principle of relatedness. So I would say there is a difference—I could go into this all day, but I hope that’s a helpful starting point in terms of the context around the two.

“Feminine power is really the power to create those things that can’t be controlled: true love, intimacy, higher creativity, the realization of your spiritual potential, your creative gifts, being able to impact others.”twitter

CP: Yes! Creating a life where we’re really living our truth, and the outer world becomes a reflection of our inner alignment.

I love the idea that feminine power becomes expressed through relationship and our greater contribution. After you realize the truth of who you are, you can go in a million different directions. But when people with a strong feminine lead realize the truth of who they are, they want to express it in terms of relationship. This means a great contribution to the world and how we can make the world a better place.

CZ: Yes. And this is where it really is a paradigm shift.   Many of us are looking at what we’ve been lined up with. Many of us have been lined up with goals of success—going to college and getting a good job. I know I certainly grew up where these were the markers of success. And I experienced them. I was a high achiever early on in life, and I was able to accomplish a lot of goals.

By the time I was in my late twenties, I was the head of an organization, I had a team of 50 women. Everything looked great on the outside. I had accomplished all of the things that I was supposed to do, and yet I was painfully depressed. I would go to sleep with a kind of agony. I would wake up with it. And it was really the beginning of a dark night of the soul. And it was very confusing because I felt like there was a deeper purpose, a deeper reason why I was here. I could feel this contribution inside of me; I could sense it, but I couldn’t see it.

“I felt like there was a deeper purpose, a deeper reason why I was here. I could feel this contribution inside of me; I could sense it, but I couldn’t see it.”twitter

And I think this is the challenge that we have, where we need to create with a different system of power. Because the yearning that’s awakening in us, it’s not just to achieve these external markers of success, as wonderful as they are. A deeper yearning is awakening in us to discover who we are and why we’re here, and really participate in the life process in a way that’s bigger than ourselves. And that has to do with becoming the fullness of who we are in service to the evolution and flourishing of life.

“A deeper yearning is awakening in us to discover who we are and why we’re here, and really participate in the life process in a way that’s bigger than ourselves.”twitter

That’s really the deeper context each one of us—you, me, all of us—in our clearest moments sense that we have gifts and talents inside of us that the world has never seen and may never see again after we’re gone. Perhaps even in our most courageous moments we sense that we have a role to play in shaping the future of our world. And the thing I’ve really discovered is we’re right, but we can’t necessarily see what that looks like or how to get there. And the power that we’ve been cultivating— to do, to accomplish, to make things happen— is not necessarily the power that’s going to give us access to unleashing the fullness of who we are in this larger context.

“We have gifts and talents inside of us that the world has never seen and may never see again after we’re gone.”twitter

CP: Right. I think that’s what excites me the most about the rising feminine. And as we can teach our society, both men and women, to accept that energy, both as a lead and also as something to be integrated with the masculine, that it will bring that component of, “Yes, we want to realize who we are, but that’s not the end of the story. That’s not the end of the game right there. That’s just a stepping stone so we can be more effective in connecting with the rest of the world in a real way.”

CZ: Right! Absolutely. Through becoming ourselves, we can access the power to transform and evolve the world.

“Through becoming ourselves, we can access the power to transform and evolve the world.”twitter

CP: Right. So juicy. And I love your work also because you are teaching women. And again, the feminine is more subtle, there are subtler energies rather than, “OK, step one, step two, step three.” And there’s a lot of skills-based trainings out there for women who want to build businesses, who want to lead, but this vision piece, this perspective, the deep inner transformation that’s required—I really feel like that’s where the real work is.

CZ: Yes. Right. Absolutely. How do we begin to source power from relatedness? What’s the process of creating something from the inside out? In our work, we teach that there are three primary sources of feminine power, and the first is our relationship with ourselves, getting into an empowered relationship with our feelings and emotions so that we can transform and embody the deeper truth of who we are. I love that in your tagline, I think that’s the foundation. We need to actually step in and become the women that we came here to be.

“We need to actually step in and become the women that we came here to be.”twitter-logo-ew

Secondly, to be able to step into this rich co-creative relationship with the energy and intelligence of life and access our own inner guidance and the intelligence and creativity of the life process. And finally, in our relationships with each other. I think we’re so deeply entrenched in a paradigm of competition and autonomy. We feel like there’s something insufficient in us if we need help or partnership or support. But we’ve really found that the truth is we can’t become ourselves by ourselves, and we actually need to learn how to open up and receive and generate support at an unprecedented level to be able to create in this way.

“The truth is we can’t become ourselves by ourselves, and we actually need to learn how to open up and receive and generate support.”twitter

These ways of knowing and being and creating are a critical piece of development that we need to take on to be able to be successful at all of these other things—exactly what you’re pointing to. We don’t want to just have the tools to be able to make things happen. We want to be able to self-express, self-evolve, co-create, and for that we absolutely need to engage.

“We don’t want to just have the tools to be able to make things happen. We want to be able to self-express, self-evolve, co-create, and for that we absolutely need to engage.”twitter

I found it was critical in me—if I can share something from my own experience—to try to make that more tangible, more concrete. So the first thing, “becoming who you are,” I think we all sense this deeper possibility of who we are, and for many of us, we don’t have an experience of being mirrored by others in our lives, personally or professionally, in ways that reflect who we truly are.

That was my experience. I had this chronic experience of invisibility. I would go to different events, different places, and I would feel like I wouldn’t ever get any opportunities. And it would be very confusing because I knew I had wisdom to contribute, but I felt like there was a way, both personally in my relationships, where I felt very unseen and invisible, and professionally, where it was constantly my experience, where other people were not extending support or offering me opportunities or inviting me to participate in things. And I was very, very confused.

And I realized that I had a chronic way of being where I was constantly disappearing myself without even realizing it. So I was actually disconnected from my own feelings and emotions, and this is very common in women’s development in our culture. To access power in the masculine, we’ve had to become very hyper-rational, hyper-in-our-heads, to make it happen. That’s the kind of system. We don’t necessarily know how to relate to what we’re feeling. We kind of disappear our own inner selves.

And so I was so disconnected from myself that it was generating this experience of other people not being able to feel connected to me either. I was kind of waiting to be discovered [laughs]. I was confused because I had such an ability to see into other people and their experience—that’s often one of the gifts of this pattern of invisibility.

But through the principles we teach in Feminine Power—this is where we start, our first power base—I was able to get connected to myself, and I was able to get connected to what I was feeling, what I was seeing, what I was sensing. And I developed an ability to make that visible, make myself visible. So it was a shift from waiting to be discovered to actually taking responsibility to present myself into the world.

“It was a shift from waiting to be discovered to actually taking responsibility to present myself into the world.”twitter

This is what it looks like when we say, “Become the woman, become your true self.” There’s a gap in terms of who we are and who we’re being and how we’re showing up and how we’re relating. And when I began to show up and I was presenting myself, I can’t begin to tell you how radically things began to change for me in a very short period of time.

To be continued… You can listen to the recorded version of this interview HERE

Emerging Women Live — Speaker Highlights Part 3

This is part three of a series of posts that we hope will inspire and keep you engaged with what you learned at Emerging Women Live.

We are so grateful for being able to bring together these phenomenal women who shared their unique power stories, who gave us the gifts of wisdom and joy, who inspired and motivated us to take our work to the next level. We encourage you to share your favorite Emerging Women Live moments, so please leave a comment below and tell us what inspired YOU the most at #EWLive13.

1. Tami Simon – We Are Always Emerging

In 1985, at the age of 22, Tami Simon founded 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. A two-time winner of the Inc 500 award as one of the fastest growing privately held companies in America, Sounds True is widely recognized as a pioneer in providing life-changing, practical tools that accelerate spiritual awakening and personal transformation. In addition to being the publisher and CEO of Sounds True, Tami hosts a free weekly podcast series called Insights at the Edge in which she interviews Sounds True authors about the growing edge of their life and work.

“It’s true, we are each a complete, unprecedented, never before cosmic event.”~ Tami Simontwitter
“We can’t inherit a recipe to be our unprecedented self and to live the truth of who we are.” ~ Tami Simontwitter
“I ask you, what kind of evolutionary agent are you? What part of the world calls you? What do you want to see reinvented?” ~ Tami Simontwitter
 “I actually do believe that the truth of who we are flows out in such a way to be a medicine for others.” ~ Tami Simontwitter

2. Sera Beak – Soul Fire: It’s Time to Burn, Baby, Burn

Sera Beak 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 is the author of The Red Book: A Deliciously Unorthodox Approach to Igniting Your Divine Spark and Red Hot and Holy: A Heretic’s Love Story, has appeared in The New York Times, People, and Publisher’s Weekly, and on NPR, The Dr. Oz Show, and Oprah and Friends.

“If we allow the false to fall away, if we allow what’s been covering our truth to burn to the ground we come to know who we really are – a divine soul; and we begin to live as this truth.”~ Sera Beaktwitter
“I know in every cell of my female body that finding my soul is my true success.”~ Sera Beaktwitter/a>
“I need to be vigilant and responsible with how I transmit the feminine.”~ Sera Beaktwitter

3. Sil Reynolds – Emerging Crone: Gaining Value As We Age

Sil Reynolds, RN, is an author, nurse practitioner, therapist and workshop leader. For more than 30 years she has worked with women of all ages, helping them create balanced and meaningful lives.  Reynolds completed Marion Woodman’s BodySoul Rhythms® Leadership training and she a graduate of Brown University, where she majored in Women’s Studies. She has been an ongoing advisor to the Omega Institute’s Women and Power Conference since its inception. For over a decade, Reynolds led Geneen Roth’s Breaking Free From Emotional Eating workshops across the country. In 2005, Sil coordinated the Love Your Tree project for V-Day in NYC, in conjunction with Eve Ensler’s Broadway play The Good Body.

“Ladies, as we age, we are emerging as queens of wisdom.” ~ Sil Reynoldstwitter
“So when it’s your time ladies, boldly step into your third act of life, and know that it is bound to be your best act.” ~ Sil Reynoldstwitter
“Transform your suffering and your worrying into consciousness, ground in your body and wisdom and take the crown that is your rightful inheritance.”~ Sil Reynoldstwitter

4. Eliza Reynolds – The Whole Girl: A New Model for Growing Up Imperfectly

Eliza Reynolds is a 22-year-old workshop leader, author, speaker, and “professional big sister.” She is a certified teen mediator, SOS trained counselor by Planned Parenthood, and an affiliate of Adventure Game Theater. Eliza leads Mothering & Daughtering workshops for mothers and their preteen and teen daughters with her mom, Sil Reynolds. Her book, Mothering & Daughtering: Keeping the Bond Strong Through the Teen Years, co-authored with her mom and inspired by their workshops together. Eliza is also the co-founder and co-director with Josh Smith of Teen Rising.

“Our relationship with our bodies is a battleground for wholeness against the culture of perfectionism.” ~ Eliza Reynoldstwitter
“For me soul is our felt experience of our most true self, our authentic self.” ~ Eliza Reynoldstwitter
“Emerging girls need emerging whole women.” ~ Eliza Reynoldstwitter

5. Nancy Levin – Rock Your Own Foundation, Before It Rocks You

Nancy Levin, author of Writing For My Life, received her MFA in Poetics from Naropa University. Since 2002, Nancy has been the Event Director at Hay House, Inc., producing innovative events and experiential conferences focusing on self-empowerment, health and spirituality while weaving in her own story and poems to connect with audiences around the world during keynotes, workshops and seminars. Nancy is a certified LifeForce Coach and co-presenter for the Deborah King Center LifeForce Coaching Program, and she is currently completing her certification in the Breakthrough Shad Coaching Training Program with The Ford Institute.

“It’s very interesting how the most absolute devastating experience of my life, going through my divorce, is what catapulted me into this next phase of my life.”~Nancy Levintwitter
“I did the inner-work that I needed to understand that all of the validation that I’ve been seeking externally, I needed to resolve internally.” ~Nancy Levintwitter
“I now know heartbreaking one is a pain unable to be healed by the other. We can only heal ourselves.”~Nancy Levintwitter

 

Check out EWLive13 Speaker Highlights part I and part II featuring Eve Ensler, Brené Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert and many more. Please leave a comment below and tell us what inspired YOU the most at #EWLive13.

15 Women Defying Stereotypes about Female Comedy

While comedy has largely been a male-dominated industry, things are gradually beginning to change. More and more women are stepping up and closing the vast gender gap in comedy. Not only that, but the roles that women play in comedies are also shifting; from likable and naive to strong, independent, honest and unapologetic women. The stereotype that women are not funny is passé. We are witnesses to a new generation of comedians who act, write, direct and perform stand-up. We picked 15 hilarious women, some who pioneered female comedy and some who continue to break down stereotypes and get comfortable in an archaic boy’s club.

1. “While we have the gift of life, it seems to me that the only tragedy is to allow part of us to die-whether it is our spirit, our creativity, or our glorious uniqueness.” ― Gilda Radner twitter

2. “I’ve always dreamed of growing up to be Amy Poehler.” ― Amy Poehler twitter

amy

3.  “My point is, life is about balance. The good and the bad. The highs and the lows. The pina and the colada.” ― Ellen DeGeneres twitter

4. “I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific.” ― Lily Tomlintwitter

5. “It is an impressively arrogant move to conclude that just because you don’t like something, it is empirically not good. I don’t like Chinese food, but I don’t write articles trying to prove it doesn’t exist.” ― Tina Fey twitter

6. “If you’re creating anything at all, it’s really dangerous to care about what people think.” ― Kristen Wiig twitter

Kristen

7. “I’m not funny. What I am is brave.” ― Lucille Ball twitter

8. “I used my imagination to make the grass whatever color I wanted it to be.” ― Whoopi Goldberg twitter

whoopi

9.  “Reminding myself that I have a tailbone keeps me in check.” ― Tig Notaro twitter

10. “I’m not going to die because I failed as someone else. I’m going to succeed as myself.” ― Margaret Cho twitter

11. “I don’t look my best when I wake up. But, I do feel beautiful when I’m tired and happy and I’ve had a good laugh and a glass of champagne.” ― Maya Rudolph twitter

12. “If you’re passionate about your work, it makes the people around you want to be involved too.” ― Wanda Sykes twitter

 

13.  “…write your own part. It is the only way I’ve gotten anywhere. It is much harder work, but sometimes you have to take destiny into your own hands. It forces you to think about what your strengths really are, and once you find them, you can showcase them, and no one can stop you.” ― Mindy Kaling twitter

14. “Everybody has their own way of tapping into their realness.” ― Sandra Bernhard twitter

15.  “I read somewhere that men’s biggest fear is that women will laugh at them. And women’s biggest fear is that men will kill them. Kind of different stakes that we’re working with.” — Chelsea Peretti twitter

Leave a comment below and share with us who is your favorite woman in comedy.