Happy New Year!

Last night, as I watched the amazing fireworks set off over the ocean in Panama City, I reflected back on one of the many gifts of 2018. I have begun to accept and value my self in a deeper way than ever before. This has been an elusive thing in my life.

It has taken a tremendous amount of courage, support and healing. Unraveling layer upon layer of wounding and false beliefs. Allowing myself to take the risk to believe new beliefs about my self.

Oddly, what may have seemed “selfish” to me before – this love of self – has actually been the opposite. It has begun to help me to be a better person in the world. I have so much more accessible to give to the world. Where there was fear and darkness, now I also find light and great courage. I intend to use it in service and in creation.

Wherever you are, however you believe, may your new year be filled with the power of self-love. Today, I borrow the words of a master of love.


By Don Miguel Ruiz, taken from his book “The Mastery of Love”

Today, Creator of the Universe, we ask that you help us to accept ourselves just the way we are, without judgment. Help us to accept our mind the way it is, with all our emotions, our hopes and dreams, our personality, our unique way of being. Help us to accept our body just the way it is, with all its beauty and perfection. Let the love we have for ourselves be so strong that we never again reject ourselves or sabotage our happiness, freedom, and love.

From now on, let every action, every reaction, every thought, every emotion, be based on love. Help us, Creator, to increase our self-love until the entire dream of our life is transformed, from fear and drama to love and joy. Let the power of our self-love be strong enough to break all the lies we were programmed to believe – all the lies that tell us we are not good enough, or strong enough, or intelligent enough, that we cannot make it. Let the power of our self-love be so strong that we no longer need to live our life according to other people’s opinions. Let us trust ourselves completely to make the choices we must make. With our self-love, we are no longer afraid to face any responsibility in our life or face any problems and resolve them as they arise. Whatever we want to accomplish, let it be done with the power of our self-love.

Starting today, help us to love ourselves so much that we never set up any circumstances that go against us. We can live our life being ourselves and not pretending to be someone else just to be accepted by other people. We no longer need other people to accept us or tell us how good we are because we know what we are. With the power of our self-love, let us enjoy what we see every time we look in the mirror. Let there be a big smile on our face that enhances our inner and outer beauty. Help us to feel such intense self-love that we always enjoy our own presence.

Let us love ourselves without judgment, because when we judge, we carry blame and guilt, we have the need for punishment, and we lose the perspective of our love. Strengthen our will to forgive ourselves in this moment. Clean our minds of emotional poison and self-judgments so we can live in complete peace and love.

Let our self-love be the power that changes the dream of our life. With this new power in our hearts, the power of self-love, let us transform every relationship we have, beginning with the relationship we have with ourselves. Help us to be free of any conflict with others. Let us be happy to share our time with our loved ones and to forgive them for any injustice we feel in our mind. Help us to love ourselves so much that we forgive anyone who has ever hurt us in our life.

Give us the courage to love our family and friends unconditionally, and to change our relationships in the most positive way. Help us to create new channels of communication in our relationships so there is no war of control, there is no winner or loser. Together let us work as a team for love, for joy, for harmony.

Let our relationships with our family and friends be based on respect and joy so we no longer have the need to tell them how to think or how to be. Let our romantic relationship be the most wonderful relationship; let us feel joy every time we share ourselves with our partner. Help us to accept others just the way they are, without judgment, because when we reject them, we reject ourselves. When we reject ourselves, we reject you.

Today is a new beginning. Help us to start our life over beginning today with the power of self-love. Help us to enjoy our life, to enjoy our relationships, to explore life, to take risks, to be alive, and to no longer live in fear of love. Let us open our heart to the love that is our birthright. Help us to be come Masters of Gratitude, Generosity, and Love so that we can enjoy all of your creations forever and ever.


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Word for the Year

It is that time again. Time to choose a word for the year.

I began this process a few years ago, and it has become a personal tradition.

It is essentially finding a word (or words) that represent a theme for the year ahead. It can be a reminder. It can become a kind of anchor or guide. Something you are calling in. Something you are exploring. Expanding or growing into.

There are many ways to do it. Get creative. Have fun. Make your own.

I was introduced to this and still follow Susannah Conway’s way through. If you have not been introduced to her wonderful offerings, check her out. She generously makes them available for free! Go to Find Your Word for 2019.

I am taking my time. I have not chosen yet. And after I choose, I will write in the sand on the beach and let the waves wash it into the future.

Last year I had a slew of words! (I could not settle on just one.)

Daring Greatly/Stretch/Curious/Creative/Depth/Credibility/Courage

Guess what? My year was filled with exactly those. I look at those words and feel them residing in my core. I know them intimately.

I cannot wait to see what word I choose for 2019. (Or will it choose me?)

What word will be yours for the year ahead?


I share my posts here.

Welcome 2018!

I may need to change the name of my blog.

You see, I am in the midst of doing some exercises that I do each year to help me let go of the passing year and welcome the new one with a clean slate, set intentions and get clear about how I want to feel in the coming year.

Two of my favorite exercises come from the work of Susannah Conway. She generously offers a free Find Your Word program each year, and this year I am deep in the midst of it. Some people do it before the year ends, but I do mine the first week of the new year, in tandem with another process I have learned from her: Unravel Your Year.

With her Unravel Your Year workbook, I go over the year and look at what happened. I celebrate the wins and I embrace the lessons. I identify the things I want to keep doing and the things I would like to change. I ask myself what I want more of in the year ahead, and what I want less of. I envision what I would like to be doing and how I want to feel in the year ahead.

There is so much in both of these free programs — I am barely touching on the content here. I get so excited about them that I just had to share them with you. I highly, highly recommend them! (Thank you Susannah Conway!)

But back to my blog and the name of my blog.

I am in the midst of these year end/year ahead processes and am choosing my word or phrase for 2018. So far words like SOAR, BELIEF, SHINE, GOLDEN, REAL, YES and RISE are coming up repeatedly for me.

I began this blog as an attempt to start moving myself out of my self-contained shell of introversion, secrecy and shame and into the world where I could be seen, known and heard as I really am instead of the presentations I had so artfully created and utilized throughout my survival years on this planet. Hence the “skinny branches,” as I was moving out onto the skinny branches.

But now, I am finding that I want to fly. I want to leap off of the skinny branches and soar to new places, new dimensions. I want to test my wings in the sky.

So I have a dilemma. I love the name of my blog and it has meant so much to me. But I am ready for more than just life on the skinny branches. Do I change the name of my blog, or do I just keep growing and writing about it and let the name stand?

That will be a question I live for the new year, amongst many others.

Maybe that will be my word for 2018: Question.

I am not afraid of living in these questions today, of being “in process.”

2017 taught me how to really allow for that. Unexpected events of the year got me questioning everything in my life. And I mean everything. It was scary at first, and I am still in the midst of it so cannot tell you where it has brought me exactly, but I can tell you tat I know in my gut that it is very important and that where I am going through it is very good.

So we will see what lies ahead.

More to come.

However you choose to usher in the new year, I send my very best wishes to the world and to you for much peace and love in 2018.

A gift I also want to share with you today on this first day of the year is a wonderful 2018 welcoming resource by one of my favorite people (and bloggers) on the planet, Lisa Adams.

Her post today was just too beautiful, inspiring and nourishing not to share. She is a chef amongst her many talents and gifts, so it makes sense that her blog posts are always nourishing.

Enjoy! And Happy 2018!


Word for the Year

I came to 2017 eager to find the word that will be my north star, my guide, as I navigate through the unknown terrain of the year ahead. I found a wonderful exercise last year through the work of Susannah Conway, and through it, I have have dug and delved to discover the words to serve as my anchor for 2017, that encompass what my spirit needs.

Last year, my words were EXPAND and CELEBRATE. I chose these words because I felt I needed to start going beyond the ingrained Protestant-shaped boundaries from my upbringing that were keeping me modest, careful, polite, protective, cautious and introverted. I wanted to get more comfortable with putting who I really am and what I really think and feel out there. (This blog was a big action in that regards.)

In my work as an actress, I wanted to go deeper and start letting myself be seen and heard on a deeper level and to a greater scope. To start to go beyond what and who I knew. To expand my circles.

In my relationships, I wanted to connect more with the people already in my life, and allow myself to make more genuine connections with people who I wanted to get to know.

I also wanted to begin to really focus on celebrating all that I have and am, and that I do in my life. I tend to focus on what I have not done and what I feel I am lacking. I really wanted to develop the muscle of celebrating my accomplishments and all that is working in my life. My strengths. Even my so-called failures. To celebrate my life, my self, what has happened, is happening and that I am working towards. Little things, big things. All of it.

I can see now that these focuses really were a through-line for me over the past year. It has become second-nature for me to recognize the good in what I am doing each day instead of only seeing what I have not gotten to. I can more easily have difficult conversations. Certain interactions are becoming easier and I feel much more authentic and seen and heard. I know that I have been getting to some exciting work within myself in my acting. Going deeper than ever before.

I have more work to do in these areas. I am a work in progress. But much movement was made, and it was exciting and gratifying. Very gratifying. Sometimes blissful even.

This year, after looking at how the year unfolded and making plans for what I want to bring into 2017 and create more of, and doing Susannah’s exercises, I discovered my words for the year.

(It is always a bit of a challenge for me to pick just one word. Thankfully, there are no rules around this, so I get to do it however my soul sees fit! I chose a main word, and also have a supporting word, along with many words and phrases that these mean to me for my life for the next year.)

After much soul-searching, I had narrowed it down to five:

Curiosity, Courage, Stretch, Soar, Creativity

In the course of the exercise, I found that DARING really encompasses all of those words for me. I am a big fan of Brene Brown, so when I started to create a Pinterest Board to support my Word for 2017 and the name of her book kept coming up, I knew I had found just the tweek my word needed to make it THE ONE!

DARING GREATLY. I am in love with this phrase and it just lights me up.

I want to put myself out there personally and professionally in ways that go deeper and more authentically than ever before. I want to soar, to go beyond expectation, to extend, to reach out, to amplify, enlarge, expand. To live full heartedly and be willing to take risks and try out new methods, ideas and experiences. To utilize courageous behaviors in order to find out more about the things that I am passionate about. To doubt my fears and my judgements and be brave enough to be curious instead to find out what limits really exist, if they even really do! To live from my curiosity and not my fear.

I am keeping STRETCH as a supporting word. Just saying that word makes me want to move. I want to use everything I have learned to the fullest extent of my capacity and then go even further until I reach the point of failure so that ultimately I keep stretching that fullest point further and further. I had a taste of that this past year when filming the lead in a feature film. It was amazing to use everything I had and go farther than I imagined I could and be in the space of beyond-the-whole-of-what-I-knew. From that place, I could keep truly learning and growing. I realized that that is the path of the artist, the craftsperson, and I do not want to turn back from that path.

Not just for my professional life. In my personal life, too, I want to be adventurous and go deeper. Push the limits of my comfort zones. See how connected I can feel to the people in my life, and nature, the world, even. Daring greatly and stretching to be truly intimate in my relationships and in my work.

I created this through Tagul.com to use as a reminder of what these words mean for my year:


It is my touchstone as I move through the year’s unplanned challenges and unexpected opportunities for growth (aka when the shit hits the fan.) It is my guide as I choose how to spend my time and the way I choose to feel as I spend it.

What will your word for 2017 be? Happy digging.

#findyourwordfor2017 #susannahconway #daringgreatly #stretch