What a whirlwind couple of months it has been. Two conferences, 1 retreat, 9 planes, and 4 cities. Breakthroughs and connections abound.
I couldn’t imagine my life without frequent travel, but what has made these recent trips so meaningful is the work I’ve done on myself (and my business) and the impact I’ve been able to make on other people’s live, just by showing up.
Just by throwing on some yoga clothes, saying yes to adventure, and boarding a moderately sketchy plane, I was able to create a ripple effect that I’ll never fully comprehend.
We all have that power, so I hope that this post will encourage you to claim it.
In case you don't follow my every move on social media, here's what you missed: at the end of November, I attended a #beprettybrave women’s wellness retreat in Costa Rica. It was run by my friend (and podcast guest) Emily Nolan.
The goal: for 7 straight days, we ditch our makeup, ditch electronics, embrace nature, explore what it means to love ourselves, and we emerge cleansed and connected to new life-long sisters.
Sounds pretty epic, right?
Of course, I’m always looking for any opportunity to inspire and help people up-level their life and live more in alignment with their desires, but I had no idea that over the course of the retreat, I’d be gifted so many opportunities to do just that.
I just thought we’d eat some healthy food, do some yoga, maybe shed a few tears and call it a win.
To be honest, I’m so used to “my story” that sometimes I forget how quitting my corporate job to travel the world can be empowering for someone else. I forget that my ability to accept who I am, and to assert what I am/am not okay with in my life, can be an invitation for other people to do the same in theirs.
One of the benefits of being off the grid in the jungles of Costa Rica was that we had ample time to connect. Both with each other, and with ourselves. I learned about the other women's struggles in their careers (overworked, undervalued), and struggles in their relationships (Were they in it for the right reasons? Were they being true to themselves by staying?)
I opened up candidly about the challenges I’ve faced in my relationship with my dad, and the inevitable insecurities that can come with running your own business. Being so transparent is TERRIFYING, but what I found was this:
Vulnerability is power; it releases any need you have to be anything but yourself, and it empowers other people to do the same.
And ultimately, it connects you.
I’ll never forget what one of the women told me on Day 1... As we walked, flashlights in hand, back to our tree houses, a chorus of howler monkeys surrounding us, she said to me, “Kim, I believe you’re the reason I’m here.”
(Even as I type that, my eyes tear up and my throat tightens.)
We continued to connect throughout the week, and since returning home, she and another young woman from the retreat have quit their jobs to (you guessed it) travel the world. What they're doing, is capitalizing on the momentum they created in Costa Rica, and TAKING IMMEDIATE ACTION.
It's when inspiration meets action that the real magic happens.
Who knows the people they'll meet along the way, and the lives they'll touch! Having any hand in that is so humbling.
One of the ways we were able to create such quick intimate friendships, was that over the course of the week, Emily led us in a series of content sessions. We’d gather in the Pagoda and sit cross-legged on our yoga mats, circling the alter. There in our sacred space, we'd share our fears, our dreams, our judgements, and our desires.
On the last day, we wrapped up with a closing ceremony of intention. Each women defined their goal for re-entering the real world, and shared with the group what they wanted to bring back with them, and take action on.
We then selected an accountability partner (or a “Permitter” as Emily called her); someone to encourage you, and support you, as they too are on a similar journey.
We also selected an “Inspirer.” This woman was chosen because she has been where you want to go. Her role is to inspire, and support from a place of mentorship.
As we each took turns going to the front and selecting our permitters and inspirers, then explaining why we had chosen them, the most surprising thing happened...FIVE out of the 11 other women picked me; four as their inspirer, and one as her permitter. (Cue cry-face emoji).
To say that I was humbled, flattered, and shocked would be an understatement. But this gesture, this ritual, SHOWED me what is possible when you just show up as yourself. It illustrated my ability to achieve what I feel called to contribute in the world, when I don't overthink it.
In Costa Rica, there was no possible way for me to fake who I am or what I stand for.
What if I showed up that way every day? What if we all did?
When I returned home, I anxiously unpacked my suitcase, and settled in with my [new] costa rican coffee and 11 love letters; each given to me by the women from the retreat. Every letter echoed what I had learned up in the jungle: that by being exactly who I’m meant to be, my impact on those around me is far greater.
I share with you some of these words of affirmation, not to toot my own horn, but to show you what’s possible.
The truth is that I wrote very similar sentiments to each of these women. In them, I found parts of myself I thought I had lost. I was reminded of the type of woman I strive to be. I remembered truths about love and loss that define who we are. And I realized the INCREDIBLE strength that women have (sorry guys, but in some ways we will just always have you beat.)
I know that if you’re reading this, it’s because there’s something in you that is calling out to make a similar impact. That your heart would be just as touched as mine to receive a note from someone saying how you’ve impacted their life for the better. My guess, is that you're already having that impact, even if you don’t yet know.
If you’re unsure how to get back to your truth, or you're unclear on how to share that truth with the world, then let's chat. Each of us deserves to live a life where we shine our absolute brightest and through that, allow others to do the same. Book a free clarity call with me to see how we can get you back on track.
Don't waste your gifts, and don't waste your days being anything but exactly who you're meant to be.
Hugs & Love,
** Know you're meant for more, but not sure where to start? **
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