It’s Okay To Say “No”

Saying No

Hang on. One more thing.

I want to tell you about saying, “No.”

and being completely uncomfortable
anxious
worried sick
sick to your stomach

that you’ll be seen as
the bad daughter
the ugly sister
the bitchy wife
the “once upon a time” friend

and your insides feel like goo
sloshing around
and you seriously doubt your skin
will hold your innards in

and you think for a moment
about saying, “yes,” and that makes you

tremble and shake

as bile rises from the pit of your stomach to the top of your throat

and you know
you know
you know
you must say, “no”

and so you do
face to face
because over the phone is so uncool

and you tell your father or brother or partner or bestie

you tell him, “no”

and nothing you imagined happening
happens

All that worry
and pacing
and hand wringing
was all for nothing

and you go on

eating dinner

and talking about how cold it is this winter and your plans to be someplace warmer soon.

***

My poem “Saying No” poured out of me from a writing prompt in Laurie Wagner’s Wild Writing. Check out her program. I highly recommend it!

***

Wine After Yoga was a huge success! As so many of you said, “it was the perfect afternoon!”

Huge thanks to Cask and Vine for taking such good care of our group!

Stay tuned for the next Wine After Yoga event!

I Quit (and Why It’s a Good Thing)

I quit

So who would have thought I’d quit my business after B-School? Yup. I’m building the *wrong* business for me and the right business for all those well intentioned people who told me I’d be so good at that life coaching thing. Honestly, I don’t want to coach people. I want to write books and take pictures of flowers and butterflies.

Let me back up a bit and explain

For years well meaning people have been telling me that I’d be really good at this life coaching thing. Somehow those words got stuck in my head and in 2008 I started an online coaching and support business for women in the precarious role of stepmom.

From the day I started I began having this amazing and daunting love / hate relationship with my business. Yes, I was good at. I have testimonials from gobs of women saying how much I helped them. Awesome. I don’t take those emails lightly – from the bottom of my heart – I appreciate them.

But helping other people, coaching other people *is* HARD. Most of the time I never got the full story. A lot of the time people wanted me to validate and agree with them – even when they were being bratty.

My best clients were the ones who hated me at first. Because I called them out on their puppy doo. They’d go away for awhile but most of them would come back ready to do the work they wanted to do to begin with.

Exhausting.

I thought if I rebranded from The Stepmom’s Toolbox to Frazzled to Fabulous, things would be different. It’s not really. Same stuff different headline.

Working hard for something you don’t care about is called stress. Working hard for something you love is called passion.

In February I made the risky leap and signed up for Marie Forleo’s B-School. B-School is an online business program for creative entrepreneurs. I don’t know how much of an entrepreneur I really am. Do I have what it takes? Sure. But without going through the modules about building the right business and creating my ideal client, I never would have realized that I’m simply barking up the wrong tree. I’d rather be writing books and taking pictures more than trying to build a business coaching clients. I don’t need or want a coaching business – I am not worried about cash flow.

I have a good career in Information Technology. I earn 6 figures. I received a really nice bonus 6 weeks ago. (I mean, really nice.) And here I am busting my ass on an online business that I do not have the passion or desire to do.

I quit

  • No more coaching.
  • No more podcasts.
  • No more programs.

Nope.

And suddenly, the hills are alive with the sound of music…oh wait, wrong movie…

Seriously, that’s how I feel. The spaciousness that suddenly opened up inside my head and my heart. The angels I hear – laughing their asses off – because by golly, the girl finally gets IT.

It’s like Holy Shit Bat Fans!

What does this girl really really really want to do when she grows up?

  • Hang here.
  • Write books.
  • Create Daily Fab messages.
  • Take pictures.
  • Travel the world.
  • Love abundantly.
  • Teach & Practice yoga.
  • Practice Muay Thai.
  • Be a good person.
  • Do good work.

No where in that list is coach people. Or build a kick ass website. Or grow an astronomical list. Or do something just because someone told you you’d be good at it. Or not do something because someone told you you weren’t that good at it.

Yeah.

This feels more than right.

Peace out
Cub Scout

😉

xxxoooo

What about you? Have you ever quit something and felt really, really good about it? What opened up for you?

6 Soul Inspiring Quotes for Writers (and Readers)

This week I finish up a 10 week writing course taught by the amazing Laurie Wagner. In our virtual class lounge, beautiful Emilee dropped off a few quotes most definitely worth sharing…

Sunrise Serendipity Smiles

Because We Live and Die for Our Stories

“My cousin Helen, who is in her 90’s now, was in the Warsaw ghetto during World War 2. She and a bunch of the girls in the ghetto had to do sewing each day. And, if you were found with a book, it was an automatic death penalty. She had gotten hold of a copy of ‘Gone with the Wind’, and she would take three or four hours out of her sleeping time each night to read. And then, during the hour or so they were sewing the next day, she would tell them all the story. These girls were risking certain death for a story. And when she told me that story herself, it actually made what I do feel more important. Because giving people stories is not a luxury. It’s actually one of the things that you live and die for.”~Neil Gaiman

“Submitting your work is like getting on stage, pulling your pants down, and asking for comments.” ~Christina Dodd

“Be courageous and try to write in a way that scares you a little.” ~Holley Gerth

“The Beautiful part of writing is that you don’t have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon.” ~Robert Cormier

“Write like no one is reading”

“I wish I wrote the way I thought;
Obsessively,
Incessantly,
With maddening hunger.
I’d write to the point of suffocation.
I’d write myself into nervous breakdowns, Manuscripts spiraling out tentacle into abysmal nothing.
And I write about you
a lot more
than I should”
~Benedict Smith

Let me know – what’s your favorite quote for writing (or reading?) I’d love to hear from you!

Stories Move in Circles

Never in a million years would I believe a page of words could have such a freeing feeling. This one page from Everyday Sacred by Sue Bender shot straight to my heart. Its message is one I’ve been hearing over and over again. A message that keeps appearing in my own daily writing.

storiesaretoldincircles

Today I wrote “I can’t teach you how to live a better life. There’s no program I can sell you, no podcast for you to listen to, no magic pill for you to swallow. I can only show you that it’s possible.”

The things I’ve learned in the last billion years, okay, 15 years, are lessons that just about all of us experience. Divorce, being cheated on (or lied to or some other serious betrayal of trust,) serious illness or life threatening accident, loss of a job (how about a few) – man, this is the crap that drags us down, down, down. But guess what? Most of us are resilient and we bounce back – scarred a little but we bounce back transformed by the knowledge and the wisdom of making it through hell.

These are the stories I want to tell. Until now, I never knew how to write them. I kept trying to write a straight line – and then this happened after that happened. Only breast cancer came on the heels of divorce and the death of that little civilization I knew like the back of my hand was crushed when I found out my first husband was sleeping with another woman. I had no idea if I was going to live let alone be happy again. Or find true love. And somewhere in that cess pool of angst I lost not one but two freaking jobs. And in between I was a single mom with two teenage daughters – one of whom was to be my teacher. And let me tell ya, she got me ready for my life as a stepmom in short order.

So you can imagine my writers dilemma. Thank God for Sue Bender quoting Deena Metzger and for me finally reading Everyday Sacred, which I bought in 2007 and never read until now.

What a message, “Stories move in circles.” So does life.