2016 was a mixed year for me – not as challenging as 2014, but with some twisty surprises. From the beginning of the year, I was challenged on low bookings for events, feeling the effects of a diminished friendship circle, continuing family conflicts and questioning whether I had missed something in my development.
My conditioned response in the past would have been to push. To try and force results to happen, which never has the desired result and is often a pathway to familiar burnout. Having pushed myself too far one too many times, I knew it was time to make a different choice.
Also there was a guiding word that I had chosen for the year – STABILITY. All my choices needed to support me to feel stable. Stability was my path to counteract the prior years of unrest and anxiety. And no longer waiting for stability on the outside, but taking conscious steps to cultivate it from within.
From January through to April, profits I had anticipated did not materialise, my expenses were higher due to additional projects I had committed to. The primal fear inside was screaming push… get out there and work harder. But with STABILITY in my awareness and a desire for rest, I chose the opposite. I stayed home!
I made the difficult decision to complete Tantric Nights – one of our signature events for 8 years. That was tough, but it no longer felt aligned with my bigger visions.
I took 2 months off from big events and travel and spent lots of time luxuriating with my new kitten. There were some client sessions on skype – but mostly people I was already familiar with, new clients being referred on.
There was a lot of quiet and stillness. Time to play and acquaint myself with this delightful little creature whom I now cohabit with and to tune into how I want my gifts offered in the world.
During this time I was quietly creating and sewing the seeds for the 2nd half of the year. Soft promotions were happening for retreats.
I enjoyed having lots of time and space to myself. Space to breathe, relax, release. I was living on my own again (with the kitty). And whilst I missed company, I loved the freedom and space of being completely in my own aura in the house.
I read, I went to movies, I went on walks, I danced, I journaled, I remembered how to cook (only to forget again later in the year)!
FLOW (another keyword for the year) had returned through my desire for STABILITY.
And as if by magic I had five retreats fully booked for the period July through to November, Being Man (twice), Blossoming Woman, Heartfelt Tantra for Couples and Walking on the Edge.
All these retreats were incredible. Courageous people deeply committed to transformation, who were willing to be bold and vulnerable to create the desired shifts in their lives. Many of these people signed on for my Tantric Alchemy Training, which also booked out!
I felt FULFILLED and in my POWER (also keywords for the year).
I experienced a high degree of personal support – new friendships deepening and my brother being an awesome practical and emotional support.
I went to the USA and spent nurturing time with my dear friend and her family. I had an amazing experience launching a new event at World Domination Summit in Portland. This trip was nourishing on many levels.
During the intensity of October and November, a time in which I over-scheduled myself due to availability of venues, several personal crises collided also. (Note to self for future: do not do 3 retreats and launch training in the same 6-week period.)
There was a death in the family. Leading to conflict in the family. I had flu for 3 weeks. It felt difficult. Most days I was graceful. I let my feelings have me. Some days I checked out. Some days I cried and wanted it all to look different.
Overall I was proud of myself for making choices during that time that supported me. I enforced boundaries where needed. I talked things through where needed. I stayed committed to my bigger visions. I honoured all my professional commitments (with the support of Helen Zee graciously taking over couples retreat when I was without a voice).
The big difference was that my commitment to stability supported me to make much healthier choices. It supported me to know which conversations I needed to have and which ones to walk away from. I had cultivated true connections in my life through being discerning.
I took most of December off, and just let it all unravel. And in the unravelling I realised that an enormous amount of growth had happened for me during the year. My commitment to stability created a new inner foundation and a new external foundation. I found that I walked through the challenges with greater ease and resilience than in prior years.
It feels as though some part of me grew up and accepted that challenges are always going to happen. There is no Disney life. And I get to choose how I respond to the joys and the challenges of life.
Being an empowered woman is about knowing when to rest and when to be active. Knowing who to ask for help. Letting my feelings have expression through my body. And trusting myself and the bigger picture of this crazy, wild, loving, ever-generous adventure called life.
I feel grateful for being centered and knowing myself as love and stability from within!