Category Archives: Self-Inquiry

Desire, Wild Movement and Not Holding Back

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I’ve held back from sharing this interview because I was afraid.

What’s beautiful about that is then I get to explore that feeling:
 
Why does it feel scary to me? Because there’s something here I don’t want the general public to know.
 
What do I want to hide? I want to hide the side of me that comes out around the topics of pleasure, sexuality, feminine embodiment, desire, the Goddesses.
 
Why? Because it’s a part of me that’s still being birthed every day, and it’s not whole and complete yet, and if I’m not a perfectly formed human then everyone will run away.
 
The answer I always get down to is: Share anyway. Share because it helps people. Share because it helps you. Share because that’s what you’re here to do.
 
Thank you, Raquel, for bringing this through me. <3
 

Timing note: Our interview starts at 8:17, but definitely listen to Raquel speak first to set the stage for all the things we talk about.

Show description: “Amy and I [talk about] self-care in the form of movement practice and how moving your gorgeous body can unlock hidden wisdom. We also talk relationships: what to do when you start eyeing someone other than your partner, and how to have constructive communication and conversation around your relationships as they evolve.”

The Flourishing Feminine’s Morning Routine: ENJOY

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I recently stumbled on Hal Elrod’s Miracle Morning technique through my partner, who was on the hunt for a morning routine he could stick to. One of the main takeaways he received from Hal’s book is the concept of SAVERS to start the day.

SAVERS stands for: Silence, Affirmations, Visualizations, Exercise, Reading and Scribing. The idea is that you do each of these six things for 10 minutes every morning, for a total of an hour of activity.

Many people love it (including one of my heroes, Pat Flynn), but when I tried it, I found it to feel too rigid.

“DOMINATE YOUR DAY BEFORE BREAKFAST” is just not my flow, y’all.

Being the creative feminine that I am, I wanted to design a morning routine that felt more… Open. Flowy. Receptive. Yin.

So, allow me to introduce you to ENJOY.

ENJOY is my feminine answer to the morning routine.

It’s a gentle, nourishing practice you can do in 30 minutes to ground you in your body, activate your mind, tune into your heart and feel your soul’s cravings.

It even has two tracks, depending on how you’re feeling and what kind of day you’re having (a work day vs. a play day, perhaps, or an ambitious day vs. a wandering day).

  • E is for Embodiment
  • N is for Nourishing
  • J is for Journaling
  • Y is for Yielding

However, O can be modified.

  • O can stand for Organizing or Orienting

If you’re hungry for more, read on!

E is for Embodiment.

Embodiment gets me so creatively juiced up, and I believe it is truly an important way to access stuck emotions and unblock new, creative information that wants to get through to us.

This might mean simply getting on your yoga mat and doing some stretches or downward-facing dog; if you’re on your menstrual cycle, it can be doing slow, hip-sip movements on the floor or massaging your womb. If you’re feeling really vibrant, you can jump on your goddess pole (what, not everyone has one?), play with hula hoops outside or do a more hardcore workout blitz.

The main intention? Wiggle parts of you around, and see if they have any information for you.

Let your hands flow all over your body if you like. Personally, I usually find I need to liberate my pelvis and lower back in the morning, so doing cat/cows, bridges and just moving my hips in slow circles while kneeling on the floor works really well for me.

Kathlyn Hendricks says that by simply moving, we can free up space for expression and conversation. “Deep, delicious embodiment,” she writes, “is not only pleasurable, it contributes to better health, a longer life, stronger relationships—and even more creativity!”

Ask your body what it needs, and let your movement be the response.

Models for inspiration: Elizabeth DiAlto, Lara Catone, Kathlyn Hendricks

N is for Nourishment.

This step is about nourishing the digestive system to get it working optimally for you.

Step into your day with either a mug of hot lemon water or nourishing tea (I love a combination of nettles, red raspberry leaf and oatstraw, as they all build blood and contain so many nutrients for the body).

In the hot days of summer, I love the practice of squeezing half an orange and half a lemon into a 24 oz. mason jar and filling it with fresh mountain water.

Nourishment can also mean noticing and digesting what came up for you during your movement practice. How do you feel today now that you’re connected to your body?

As you make and sip your morning elixir, notice if you’re feeling lighter about your day, more free in your body… or if you just aren’t feeling your morning practice today and want to rush through it. It’s all okay.

Models for inspiration: The Conscious Cleanse ladies, Marysia Miernowska, Kimberly Snyder

J is for Journaling.

This is essential for me. It’s so essential that, when I get into an avoidant, downpressed state, this is the #1 thing that I avoid.

And yet, writing just for myself—not for a blog or magazine—is what allows me to access the deeper discoveries I need to continue living a path that’s most authentic to me in my work and relationships.

Writing helps me drop into a soft, still space inside myself from which to pull gems or ashes or weeds, depending on the day.

I recommend dedicating a specific journal to your morning scribbles, deep-dives or conversations with yourself. Find one that sings to you and make music with it.

If you want to cultivate journaling in a consistent way: Be aware of your Writer Life as an entity. Writing is a practice in the way that worship, yoga or religion can be. You can go to your place of worship or practice—you have the faith, you believe in the deity or guru. But, you also have to perform little rituals to keep the faith: put on your Sunday best, pray, meditate, do half-moon pose. These daily practices help you maintain the faith, connection and fire.

(Want more on this subject? I was interviewed on a podcast with the exquisite Raquel Alexandra where we talk in-depth about the connection between embodiment and writing.)

Models for inspiration: Amber Rae, Julia Cameron, Susannah Conway

O is for Organizing or Orienting.

Now we begin thinking about our day ahead.

If you’re orienting, you might simply ask: What direction would you like today to go? What do you have on your plate that you really want to keep there? And: What do you have on your plate that really doesn’t nourish you, but keeps being served to you anyway?

Keep your journal handy for this one (or your to-do list if you’re organizing). A question I love to ask is:

What are three things that will make today magical and memorable?

If your day is jam-packed and ambitious and you’re really needing some space to drop into it all, organizing your day (notes, to-dos, creating space in your calendar for you, etc.) might feel better to you. 

Models for inspiration: Holistic Day Design (my way of planning)

Y is for Yielding.

If you have time for nothing else, make sure you do this final step.

Yielding is surrendering to the divine. This can look like meditating, sitting in silence, visualization or just sitting in a wonder-space, dreaming up what feels right.

Yielding is what we do when we ask the question that matters, which is: “What do I want to come through me today? What would my highest Self have me do today?”

Here are the various ways I’ve practiced yielding:

  • feeling all the love in my heart expand
  • admiring whatever song is playing
  • visualizing what I’m craving as something I already have
  • breathing and focusing on where I can move breath in my body

Models for inspiration: Marianne Williamson, Julie Dickinson

Music for your 6-minute intervals:

I find that the timing goes much more smoothly for me if I’m not setting five 6-minute alarms on my phone. Just set up a playlist of songs that are close to 6 minutes; then, it’s easy to choose the ones you like that day and move them in the order you desire (or else let it be random!) and hit Play.

6-minute (ish) songs I have on my playlist:

  • Angel by Massive Attack (6:20)
  • Egyptic by Beats Antique (5:50)
  • Secrets by Goddess Alchemy Project (6:11)
  • Between Two Points by Glitch Mob (5:33)
  • Light by Dr. Toast (5:34)
  • Cinder and Smoke by Iron & Wine (5:44)
  • Rondeña by Antonia Gomez (5:45)
  • Timelapse by Ludovico Einaudi (5:32)
  • Saraswati by Desert Dwellers (6:39)
  • Hayling by FC Kahuna (6:48)
  • Up All Night by The Waifs (5:53)
  • Slip by Elliot Moss (5:04)

Combine some of the short-of-6-mins ones with the longer-than-6-mins ones and you’re golden.

This isn’t about being a stick in the mud to the 6-min rule, either. If you’ve got more time, do each for 8 mins for a 40-min practice. Not a lot of time? Do each for 3 mins for a 15-min practice.

Let me know what you think over on the public Facebook post!

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The Key to Feeling Empowered in Conversation (Even If It’s One-Sided)

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Some friends and I were watching a dance performance at the Boulder Theater when a friend-of-a-friend arrived. During an intermission, she began to talk about her recent breakup, and the texts she was now sending him that he wasn’t replying to.

“I told him he was beautiful, and he didn’t say anything. All I need is a ‘thank you.’ Just a ‘thank you.'”

She proceeded to mention a couple of other messages she was “needing” replies from.

When she said it, it knocked me back to the person I am when I say things like this, which is a self that doesn’t quite feel like my full Self. It’s something I’m acutely aware of, and it inspires me to write about how we can start conversations that empower us—even if we never get a response to what we’re expressing.

When we have something to express, how can we communicate what’s truly in our heart?

Often, if we think we need a specific thing in return, it means that we are communicating from a state of lack—that we’re waiting for a response or reaction to fill us up or help us decide what to feel. To need in this way can feel very disempowering.

Continue reading The Key to Feeling Empowered in Conversation (Even If It’s One-Sided)

Here’s How to Make Valentine’s Day Not Lame

Arrived here after Valentine’s Day 2016 and missed out on the sale? No sweat! You can get still The Relationship Vitalizer workbook (same content, repurposed for all your special holiday and anniversary needs) for $18 here.

Valentine’s Day is often regarded as a Hallmark holiday or something to be eye-rolled at or made fun of.

It’s also sometimes filled with pressure for one partner, and filled with anxiety and expectation for the other—or worse, both, for both partners. Ugh!

But, what if it didn’t have to be this way?

What if we could use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity and invitation to go deeper in our relationships—without spending tons of money on a fancy night out?

This question prompted me to create The 2016 Valentine’s Day Relationship Vitalizer workbook for you.

Name your price for it here!

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The workbook is laid out in the following sections:
  • Intro, Setup & Preparation
  • Step 1: Inquiry
  • Step 2: Expression
  • Step 3: Reverence
  • References for Diving Deeper

Part ritual and part deep-dive exercises, you’ll explore inward first, then play with what you’ve found with your partner in a safe space, then come together in intention-setting and celebration!

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IMPORTANT:

This 2016 workbook will only be available for 72 hours—from midnight PST on Feb. 11 until midnight PST on Feb. 14—so if you want it, name your fair price and jump on it!

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Got questions? I have answers!

Where did you source the exercises in the workbook from?

From my own experience with my partner, Tony, and from the inspired memory files of all the amazing books we’ve read and the people we’ve talked to. Special thanks to Andy & Libby, Gay & Kathlyn, Gaby & Raj, Alexi & Preston, and Amber & Farhad. You inspire us so much.

How long will the exercises take?

I recommend allotting an hour for them—perhaps after a fabulous homemade dinner on VDay, or before heading out to go dancing together? You might want to allow two hours if you really want to take your time with it (or add some champagne while you’re doing it).

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Do we have to do this specifically on Valentine’s Day?

Certainly not! While you’ll want to make sure you grab it before midnight on Valentine’s Day, you can use it whenever. This is a fabulous exercise to do on an anniversary, as a quarterly or monthly check-in, or just because. It’s never a bad time to deepen your bond.

Can I do this without a partner?

Yes, you can. Some of the questions might not apply if you’re doing it solo, but honestly, you can do these with a close friend whom you’d like to invite to support you (and you, them) in greater expansion and aliveness.

Is this a religious thing?

No. The questions are meant to help you go deeper with yourself and your partner and could be viewed as “spiritual” in nature, so be prepared for that.

Will this make me uncomfortable?

Some might call the questions a bit “confronting,” but at the same time, you won’t find: “What’s something you’ve been hiding that you don’t want to share? Now tell me!” either. On the confronting scale: If that question is a 10, and “What’s your favorite flower?” is a 1, these exercises are at a 6 or 7. And remember: You never have to divulge anything you don’t want to, to anyone. Repeat after me: Empowerment and boundaries!

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Why is the workbook only available for 72 hours?

I wanted to make this purely a Valentine’s Day offering. Plus, the number 72 is a uniquely human and embodied number—it is both the average number of heartbeats per minute for a resting adult and the percentage of water of which the human body is composed. Neat!

When will I receive the workbook?

Nevermind the pre-order time Gumroad says (a technical glitch is happening). You will definitely receive this in your inbox at 11:59 p.m. PST (or even earlier!) on Thursday, Feb. 11. You can count on it!

Name your fair price here and grab it now!

Special thanks to Wonder in Boulder for not minding me using their space as a beautiful backdrop for these photos. :)



How to Make an Argument Diffuser Box for Your Relationship

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Good news, guys! Since my video I published last week, I’ve learned some bare-bones basic techniques in Final Cut Pro, so this video has way less “ums” than it originally did.

If you don’t really believe me since there are still enough “ums” in it to make a drinking game, that’s fine. (I recommend Spanish cider, since it’s 4% ABV. Have fun!)

But really, this post is very meaningful to me.

In this video, I show how I made an Argument Diffuser Box for my relationship—and how you can easily make one too from materials you probably have lying around the house (and if you don’t, I’ve included where you can find some pretty ones below).

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The Argument Diffuser Box is filled with decorated mini-exercises, all rolled up and tied with twine, designed to be plucked from their home when in the midst of a fight or heated discussion.

I authored all of the cards and exercises myself, but a lot of them were inspired from some of my favorite books (listed below the video) on intentional partnership.

The cards are fun and light-hearted, and inspire you to get out of your lizard brain and back into love, play and affection.

I explain much more about them in the video. Enjoy!

Now: Make Your Own!

For the box:

I used a mini-suitcase from a teddy bear my boyfriend gave me a long time ago that I saved because I had a feeling it could be re-used. :) But here are some great ones if you want to go ahead and make it look extra pretty and intentional:

For the notes (cards + writing):

I had some blank business cards from Muji that I hadn’t used, so I stuck with a brown, rustic, natural motif for the entire thing and drew some colorful designs inside the cards. If you want to make things more colorful or cute:

For the wrapping:

At first I thought about just folding the cards up, and then realized that was the most boring thought I’d ever had. Tie them up in style!

Show Notes

Books I Mention (Also My Top 5 Relationship Books):
Also:
  • Sorry my apartment is messy! Tony and I just moved in together and we’re working out storage issues. :)
  • By “epitaph” I meant “epigraph,” and that’s why I’m a writer, not a pronouncer.
  • I’d love to have a Conscious Partnership Development chat with you, anytime.
  • What do you think of my box? Want one? Let me know in a comment!

Year in Review: My 7 Most Popular & Beloved Posts of 2015

I love flowing with the energy of people around me.

I love the static charge of Mondays, the crisp walk into the start of September, using both to nudge me into my work day/s.

In May, I follow the energy of play bubbling up, going on solo road trips to festivals before doing 100-Day workout challenges in the summer.

And this time of year—I’ll admit it—I adore the energy of the end-of-the-year transition into the new year.

Resolution-haters be damned, I love reviewing the past year and making intentions in the clean landscape of a blank slate. So, I took a look at Live All of You’s 2015 stats and decided to share with you what I found.

Google Analytics, thank you for helping me figure out my most popular 7 posts!

Here are Live All of You’s Top 7 of 2015:

Continue reading Year in Review: My 7 Most Popular & Beloved Posts of 2015

I’m Discontinuing My Coaching and Course. Here’s Why.

I want to write you an honest letter about “coaching.”

It seems to me that the word has become diluted.

In some forms, coaching has become another way sell a quick fix—to sell the belief that if you pay for an hour of coaching, what you want to be “fixed” will automatically be fixed.

First of all, that’s a lot of pressure on a coach! Second of all, it’s practically impossible.

Anyone who tells you they can transform your life in 60 minutes is selling you a lie.

And, it might not be on purpose. There are people you can spend an hour with who can completely shift your perspective, calling you to your gifts and how to live your life through them, showcase them and offer them up for value in the world…

But that still takes work, time and energy after the session is over.

Someone looking for an hour-long quick fix with no additional input or intention afterward is not going to find what they’re looking for.

Because the only person who can transform your life is you.

And so, in an effort to dive into and evaluate this, I’m putting my one-time coaching and current course on indefinite hold.

Why?

I want to offer more value to people, I want to put less pressure on myself, and I want to feel valued in what I’m offering—to the point where I don’t have to constantly market or cobble together one-time clients to make an income for myself.

Besides, for most coaches, a one-hour session isn’t just that hour. It’s at least an hour of preparation beforehand, perhaps sending a client a questionnaire and reviewing it, perhaps more. Then, it’s maybe 30 minutes each way of transit time to and from the session if it’s in-person (a lot of mine are). Then, it’s another hour of writing and curating a follow-up email with action steps, strategies and notes from our session as a keepsake.

That’s four hours minimum of work, not counting the marketing to reach that client.

I also often discount my one-time session coaching (another dilution I’m stopping), depending on the circumstances.

Which often means I end up not feeling valued, because I’m not valuing my work at the level I need to be. And this translates to the client not receiving optimal value either.

This work is valuable, but I have little space to do it if I’m worrying about making a sale every time I send an email.

So. I’m discontinuing my coaching and current course indefinitely.

And I’m offering a one-price package in case you want to grab them before I take them offline on Jan. 1.

One price. Three things. No other options.

You’ll get:

  1. My Manifest Like a Mofo 9-week online course (Cost: $188)
  2. A 60-min Coaching Session to be used before Jan. 15, 2016 (Cost: $200)
  3. My Holistic Day Design Productivity Atlas* (Cost: $21)

That totals to $409.

Right now, you can grab all three for $177. You can also gift them to someone.

coaching package 2015Here’s the only link to grab the $177 package. That’s my final offer.

Also, if you don’t use your coaching session before Jan. 15, 2016, it will disappear into the ether (which is the same place it will go if you aren’t ready to put in the work after the session is over). :)

(*I am going to keep offering my Holistic Day Design packet and my Revive & Strategize Weekend, but those will be undergoing some major renovations in the coming months.)

I cannot even explain how freeing and exciting and nerve-wracking this feels inside me. How terrifying, really. I’m someone who believes in money channels. That money flows through us via channels, and we can turn them on and off… And, I ask myself: Do I really want to close off this channel? What if another one doesn’t open up?

And yet… I can’t help noticing the feeling of freedom and aliveness writing this to you.

So, I’m doing it.

To open up to new ways of being and offering, and really focusing on what I want to share and create that can be of immense value.

Here’s to an amazing 2016.

How Lara Catone Lives All of Her: Revitalizing Sex Education Through Embodiment

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This is part of the Live All of You Interview Series! For more on what this is all about, head over to the intro post and make sure to sign up to find out who I’ll be interviewing next.

When I first heard of Lara Catone, I was about to head out on a road trip to connect with my gravity-bound self again. I had been traveling by plane way too much, and I’d been feeling a deep need to commune with the earth.

I wanted to root, not route. I wanted to flow, not fly. I wanted to be humbled by gravity, not scanned for metal, put in metal and spit out in a different time zone.

And I wanted to touch in to my divine feminine—my creative force, my inner Shakti, my innate wisdom. And so, I headed to Shakti Fest, a festival that honors the divine feminine.

I spoke with Lara briefly via email beforehand, and I felt very called to attending her workshops at the festival. She defined the divine feminine to me as pleasure incarnate, as a dancer, as holy and irreverent. She is deeply well studied and interested not only in the spiritual aspect of things, but the scientific and historic. These dual aspects of her nature resonated with me.

Having experienced her exquisitely strong, soft, wise nature in workshops multiple times now, I am so happy to introduce you to her in the Live All of You Interview Series.

Lara is a somatic sexologist and sex educator who supports women in healing and coming into wholeness. As the founder of The Artemis School, the first and only educational institution weaving sex education with embodiment and nature-based mystery traditions, Lara believes that our sexual energy is the vital life force behind everything we create.

And… I have an announcement!

Finally, after having this in my heart for months… I’m delighted to share that in 2016, I’ll be attending The Artemis School!

I feel spellbound thinking about this journey toward becoming a sex educator and practitioner of women’s holistic sexuality—and even more so, about connecting more deeply with my self and other women in this context.

And now, I present to you: Lara Catone.

Continue reading How Lara Catone Lives All of Her: Revitalizing Sex Education Through Embodiment