If God is in the details, then the Soul is in a good Q&A. And that’s the substance of Podcast #4: Beliefs, Movies & Man Crushes. Your questions make it so easy for me to rant and offer some (hopefully) useful how-to’s and tricks of the trade. The “trade” being discernment and devotion. It’s deep, it’s lite, I hope it’s alllll right:
So here’s what’s in LIGHT WORK Episode #4: Beliefs, Movies & Man Crushes…
Have you ever Feng Shui’ed your house?
Honey, I’ve done it all. I’ve Feng Shui’ed my house. I’ve stuck crystals up my vagina and worn them in my bra. I’ve done the 10 steps of this, that, and the other… But here’s where I am with Feng Shui right now:
My friend, is one of the most workshopped and certified people I’ve ever met. She’s been in every workshop I’ve ever been to, times ten. So, of course, not only did she go to Feng Shui workshops, but she became a certified Feng Shui instructor. So she had a Feng Shui workshop, and one of her students came back a few weeks later to tell her that one of the practices actually worked. She had just met this really great guy—
By the way, here’s what the practice was: First identify the “relationship corner” in your house. Then paint that corner in whites, reds, and pinks. And in that corner you should also display objects in pairs (to symbolize connection/harmony in relationship). Two candles, two little bird figurines, two flowers, etc.
—Ok, so Kate’s student came back and said, “I did just what you told me. I put some pairs in the corner and it’s worked beautifully! I’ve met this great guy…” But it turns out, the student had misheard what Kate had said, and she’d put a bowl of p-e-a-r-s in her relationship corner. Not pairs. Pears. And with pears, she manifested a stud!
Why did that happen? Maybe she believed so intensely that the pears were going to magnetize something to her. Maybe finally she believed she deserved it. Maybe she was seeing it, feeling it, and allowing it. Who knows…
Feng Shui has been around for thousands of years… I make the assumption that it’s been so watered down and hijacked by various cultures for commerce and ideology that probably the practice of it is… not so pure anymore. I have some serious doubts about it. And I also have a limited amount of energy that I can apply my belief energies—my devotion—to. I would much rather invest my time and belief in the efficacy of meditation (and kindness, and prayer) than making sure the fame wall in my house is painted red. So, that’s the long answer to Feng Shui’ing my house. The answer is, “Not anymore.”
Do you drink tea?
Yep. (I’ve actually never had a cup of coffee. Not a sip. Strange, I know.) My favourite teas—and WHY…
Guayusa tea from Runa
Lavender tea from Stash
Tulsi Rose from Organic India
Pretty much anything from Traditional Medicinals
These are pretty much the only brands of tea that I consume. The tea bags are kept closed with a little tiny staple as opposed to being sealed around the edges with glue. Glue is not something you want to let steep in hot water and then drink. I first learned about this through the Food Babe. You’d be surprised how many “healthy teas” come in bags that are glued together…
What brings back your energy when you are in your darkest hour?
Here’s the thing: I take my own medicine. I wrote a book about “Core Desired Feelings” called The Desire Map. It’s based on the idea that everything we do is so that we can feel a certain way—the things we buy, the people we hang out with, what we eat, our jobs… The same goes for the goals we set for ourselves: we think achieving that goal is going to trigger a specific desired feeling. So, why don’t we do it in reverse? Instead of starting with goals, we start with clarity on our preferred states of being.
So The Desire Map is my tool for more conscious achieving, AND it’s also a tool for getting out of the “darkest hour”. I’ll give you an example…
I’m in the kitchen having an argument with my then husband. I’m in pain and getting really angry. And I start to take full responsibility for my part AND his part. I become OVERLY responsible for the situation, and I start thinking, I need to be more loving, more understanding, more compassionate.I should go to more yoga. I should open my heart chakra…
Pause. What if in that moment, I think of how I want to feel? How would I rather be feeling right now? I don’t want to feel heavy or hostile. No. I want Communion, Connection, Fluidity, The Divine Feminine, Beauty… In that moment of agony, I can reach for my Core Desired Feelings. What do I have to do right now, in this moment of shit, to feel the way I really want to feel? Maybe instead of fighting I’ll go for a walk. Maybe I’ll be still and listen. When I’m clear on my Core Desired Feelings, I can choose whatever gets me out of that darkest hour.
What are your favourite movies?
Bunches of people ask me about movies and books and such, and I could go on for days. Here are my favourite movies of all time:
Far from the Madding Crowd, directed by Thomas Vinterberg
Avatar, directed by James Cameron
1,000 Times Goodnight, directed by Eric Poppe
The Anniversary Party, directed by Alan Cumming and Jennifer Jason Leigh
About Time, directed by Richard Curtis
To Kill a Mockingbird, directed by Robert Mulligan
Cinema Paradiso, directed by Giuseppe Tornatore
Bridesmaids, directed by Paul Feig
What are some of your greatest doubts? How do you move through them?
I think my greatest doubt—the one that causes me the most suffering—is about the future of humanity. We are in deep shit. Everywhere you turn, there’s corruption and poison in literal and figurative ways. We are living in highly unethical and immoral times. I am worried about food security, and biological warfare, and…
But I can’t dwell in that doubt place. I will fester. It will infect my creativity. It will definitely infect my happiness. And that’s why I have to do intentional work on a daily basis. To get from that place of doubt to a place of joy and more faith. I make it a practice. I talked about this in Episode #3 of LIGHT WORK (on joy): to keep making choices that are about joy, about celebrating, about moving into my strengths, and about being incredibly grateful.
One of the greatest things that helps me dissolve doubt is knowing that I have the capacity to change someone’s mind for the better. I have the capacity to help rock the vote. I have the capacity to spread awareness, to spread truth, to help wake people up to corruption and poison and lies. EVERYBODY reading has that capacity. You have a voice. You have awareness. You have DESIRES. Knowing that helps me feel empowered and hopeful.
“How did you learn to speak so calmly and with such effect?”
One: I am naturally chill. Chill is, like, baked into my DNA. Whenever I do a heart rate test I’m like, just a few notches above dead.
Two: I have learned to speak from my heart—not just metaphorically, but energetically. I learned this from my vocal coach, Awilda Verdejo. I pay attention to where everything comes from: my voice, my intention, my energy, my thoughts, my opinions, my love, my timbre… and as I do that I’m always attending to my heart. Even as I record this podcast, my heart aches in the best way.
Three: I am 100% unwaveringly certain about why I’m here and what I have to offer when I’m speaking. I’m here to serve. I’m here to be self-expressed. I’m here to connect with the cosmos. I’m here to give comfort, clarity, and encouragement. I deeply feel that I deserve to be here. I’m clear in my worthiness, so I don’t feel like I’m wasting your time… at least that’s my hope.
In a nutshell: I’m hot for hot man feminists who work (in their own way) to make the world a better place. Service is a huge turn on for me. And some other things. Come listen to the podcast for my man crush list. It’s… um… intimate.
We rarely hear about your parents… Did you ever resent the mistakes they made? Did they not make many? Do you see them?
One of my shrinks said that most people didn’t really start to live—really live—until their parents died. I did the math: for most of us, if your parents live a relatively healthy life, you’ll be in your 50’s or 60’s when your parents pass away. To go through so much life without expressing yourself completely? It’s a plague of a condition.
I see my parents, ya. All is well. I just have a “rule” for myself: I never share stories about someone without their permission. Every single nugget I put into a book or a social post, I’ve run by my friends. I don’t talk much about my son’s personal life, and I never, ever directly talk about past romantic relationships—though I will share plenty about what I learned, like I did in Episode #3, when I spoke about tapping my joy in the agony of my divorce.
Generally, with respect to parentals, here’s how I’ve come to see it… at some point, you’ve got to stop blaming your current reality and relationship habits on your parents. Yes, go to therapy and excavate and clarify. Do it. And then… be here now.
Ceasing to blame your parents for your current reality doesn’t invalidate the heart brokenness or the tick you have in your psyche as a result. It just sets you free to make entirely different and wildly empowered choices for your life today. Being a grown up is about the power to choose what you’re responsible for.
And you can choose to be radically responsible for who you are now.