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Late one night,  in a cabin way in the Northern Kingdom my young daughter woke screaming. Her arm was nearly black. And she was in the most extraordinary pain. As I touched her black throbbing arm, I almost passed out.  We soon found the culprit, an elastic that had worked its way up her arm.

But to this day I LOVE HOW SHE FREAKED THE FUCK OUT. No part of her was unclear that no circulation is not ok.

I’ve seen a recent trend in clients ( and, of course, in myself )  where a chronic vibration of anxiety creates this tourniquet of static, cutting off the flow of life to that area.

Wanna know if you have an anxiety tourniquet on an area of your life?  Check it:

  • do you feel like a nervous poop when you think about it?  
  • Is life moving weirdly and unsatisfyingly there?

Then you probably do. And….

I want you to stop being so fucking calm about it.  Chronic anxiety is not okay, not helpful and you don’t have to endure it anymore.

Anxiety is you using your focus to activate realities you don’t want and feeling powerless in the whole deal.  It literally cuts you off from all your intuitive urges, and the guidance that’s always coming through and so, in that area, you likely feel like a bit of a dunce and a lifelong sloth because you ain’t got no mojo flowing.

It’s nice to realize that removing that tourniquet of anxiety will release life force to flood that area again. And you’ll get to meet your fully funded, awake and playing like a boss self in this area.  You’ll get to crush out on Renewed and Sexypants You again.

 

It’s spring, and the sap is rising. Let it rise, darlings, let it rise.

 

nat joy o clock saves me

from a client this morning

Here’s how I play with and thru anxiety:

 

I went through a whole ninja training period where my sole aim was to get better at relaxing.  

I slowed way down, and really started to pay attention to what works for me. Hot long baths actually make me angry.  Laying all day on tropical beaches are something I would pay to avoid.  Rock hopping really hard, fast and bright into the surf, on the other hand, cleans me to my wind parts.  

Listen, really tune in.  And make room for a realer relationship with your own calm abiding self.

I collect tools, shamelessly, just like I’m not shy about snatching a beautiful shell or rock from the shore.  I harbor no romantic attachments to having happiness be easy or inevitable. It’s a craft and something that takes dedication and no small measure of wizardry.  

I greet new tools like the new best friends they are and incorporate them into my toolkit.  I make sure I have some uptodate tools for anxiety. Right now EFT, on the go nidra breathwork, and shifting my focus are really close friends to me.

I get ahead of the momentum. Joy o clock is a simple practice of getting up a little earlier than your life does and turning all of your gorgeous human attention, for a small period of time, on your joy, where she is, and how you can be closer and more steadily in love with each other.

It’s like a sexy date with your forever love Joy.  In that,  you inevitably discover those thoughts and worries that are creating that anxious static tourniquet that prevents all the joyful impulses from getting through to you.  And you deal with them, right there, and get a jump on them before they get a jump on you! Leverage that contrast yo!  Don’t let it leverage you.  As Abraham says, it’s easier to just step out of the way of the Mack truck that’s about to fall on you, then to try to clean up the mess if you don’t.

Happy chilling the eff out friends,

love, Natalie

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There’s a lot of hubbub out there on the waves about following your highest yes.  As I am a huge fan of both hubbub and waves, let’s DO THIS.

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Bashar, the alien, says that the key to a happy life is to follow your highest excitement, period.  And while I trust the advice of aliens absolutely (when is the last time an alien steered you wrong?) it’s not that practically useful.

What the hooties does that mean or really look like?  In a life, so full of demands, inquiries, habits, responsibilities, not to mention ruts, grooves, and cycles, or all those people we’ve COMMITTED OUR LIVES TO, how do you find room to really follow your highest excitement?

And not just follow, but converse with, show up for, and maybe even dance a little nekkid with, all without dumping the apple cart of your beautiful life, on it’s little apple cart head?

If you were to look at your now life and tried to brain-scheme how to carve out some room for your real yes to thrive, you’d likely just lower your head in a quiet hopelessness.  Perhaps you’d start to slowly slam your skull against the desk, maybe you’d establish a little quiet rhythm, who knows? The point being, and Einstein fully agrees with me here, “The mind that creates the problem cannot create the solution.” You gotta heart ping your way there.

And by heart ping, I very much mean freckle friend your way there. Here’s the story from a Player’s Way participant, from her perspective,

“I remember in my twenties I was so free.  I had a ninja boyfriend and would sneak in through his roof gazebo and attack him in his bed.  I traded seashells for coffee on my way to work.  I’d take myself out for knitting and beer dates, alone at a bar, and feel so satisfied and easily perfect in myself, whatever I was or wasn’t doing.

One day I was taking a shower and realized I had a new freckle on my arm. I used to have 8 freckles, and I also had 8 friends at the time.  When I saw that new freckle, I knew instantly that I had a new friend, and that I had to meet them as soon as possible.  I leapt out of the shower, got dressed and jumped out the door and dashed down the street.  I started looking everywhere, thinking “is it you?  Is it you?”  

I didn’t even know what I was really looking for, I just knew I had to do this. Suddenly I realized I needed to go into this convenience store/bar.  I walked all around, looking, but found no one, no buzz. So I left, but walking away felt wrong, and even though I felt sure that none of the people I’d seen were it, I went back in.  As soon as I entered the door a man emerged from the back and our eyes locked.  We walked towards each other.  He seemed like he wanted to say something, I opened my mouth to speak, totally clueless about what I would say, then he said in a rush, “I have the strangest feeling that I have to tell you something but I have no idea what it is.”

Then we just started running. He reached out and grabbed my hand so we could run better together.  We were so alive. It sounds like something out of a movie when I say it.  We found our way to a park and spent all day talking and making art out of the things we found on the ground and in the trees and stones.”  

That friend went on to become an important player in the development of her artistic career, and hosted her first opening.  There was something unique and ineffable about their connection that she could simply never have thought her way to.  She had to freckle friend her way to him.

 

When we hear something on the earlier ping, it’s delicate, fresh and pure, like a raindrop before it’s traveled through a polluted atmosphere and dog pee snow to get to you.  I’m not saying that your cluttered mind is dog pee snow, I’m implying it is but not actually saying it.  The POINT is, it’s real super nice to encounter that drop in its purest form, because it’s full of the original power (and not dog pee).   

If we learn how to listen and respond to those cues at that delicate, intuitive, deeply connected, deeply listening level, our whole conversation with life becomes more authentic, stronger, more flexible and the life that blooms out of that conversation reflects that authenticity, strength and verve.

When you don’t hear the pinging in the early, outer heart brain, intuitive magic listening range, it’s a little like you’re talking to someone else while you’re driving, and your GPS is sending these very fine-tuned cues, but you’re focused on the other conversation and miss the cues to turn, which, at first, are coming quickly, as the GPS quickly reroutes its suggested route to accommodate your now position, but after a time, as you continue to not listen, you get farther and farther away and the clues are less bright and further apart, all the while, the number indicating how far away you are from your destination continues to grow.

When you begin to make some durn space and willingness to clearly hear the wisdom of your highest self, turn here, now turn, here, now! The actually shape and quality of your life begins to reflect the very timely, and very unique-to-you wisdom of your highest self, lighting up the path.

You turn when it’s time to turn, you speed up when it’s time for entering the pure whoosh, and slow down when it’s time for slownness, for care, for integration and deepening.  Your life begins to look like Your life, which is the deepest creative gift we have to give.

Now onto the How To Bits…

the only real valuable thing is intuition

 

stay long listening at the listening well

Are you REALLY okay with this ________?  Is it a ten? Is it ever gonna be? Are you fake yessing cuz you’re unwilling to make real room for all of you to bloom up into the wild tundra of your gorgeous life?  Try this simple thing, it works for all everythings: (really) listen, and adjust accordingly. Almost nothing kills intuitive living more than pretending you’re okay off your path. Except shame.

Shame definitely is worserer.

 

buy dem shameproof jammies

If humans can design tents and jammies that don’t burn, we can design lives that don’t indulge in the profound confusion of feeling shameful about who we are.

Important note: if you’re doing something you feel is wrong, and you feel bad about it, good, that’s an informative clue for you to cut that shit out. Don’t do anything that makes you feel shame.  High roads and all of that.

Beyond that, shame, as a response, spreads like briars and soon you’re more familiar with how to be ashamed, than how to enjoy and nourish real growth.

If you don’t have a shameproofing tool in your adventure bag, get one.  EFT, the Work and rampages of appreciation for self are nice places to begin a new conversation.

 

be willing to be wildly, astronomically misunderstood

When following intuitive urges, sometimes shit don’t make no sense no how. You’re hunkering into some primordial ooze, following the funhouse pathways of least resistance and dancing with the Cosmic Harmonies.  The mind can’t keep up, yours or theirs. Get okay with it.  Breathe into the calm abiding wisdom of your heart … over and over and over again.

 

keep your soul eyeballs out for freckle friends, everywhere, in everything

What if connection is a thousand times easier, more fun and more meaningful than we ever imagined?  What if ease and curiosity and self tenderness were all that was missing from profound shared joy?

O!  The primal beauty of a brand new possibility. Smile into the possibility of renewed ease and delight infiltrating all your relationships.

 

get photosynthetic

Lean towards joyous, light experiences like a kitchen plant that’s plastered it’s face leaves flat to the window to souse itself in every freaking drop of light the sun has to offer.

Lean with all your weight into joy and you’re well on your way to being whiskable.

 

become whiskable

At the heart of every dream is an essence, a distilled emotion or experience we are being called to for all the reasons we are.  When we say “the Universe has a better imagination than me” we’re just acknowledging how prettily we are by the lives we live, and also, beautifully limited.  But Source Energy is beautifully not contained, and beautifully without limits and that lends itself to some serious perspective on how best things might shake down.

So, get a little easy about how stuff shows up.  I like to aim in the direction of what is bright and stay flexy, listening and tuned in as I get closer, course correcting as I go.

Like a trash bag in a city wind, I get whisked away on the most extraordinary and bucket listy kinds of treasure days and dropped, heart first, into moments of astonishing beauty and wonderment.

 

kill the cat

Kill fake sureness.  Kill fake okayness.  Learn how to live a question and not settle for things that are not really answers. Trust your thirst.  Feed your greedy, curious heart what it needs to stay lusty and quaking.

 

Figure out how you storm

In a hurricane, there’s a quiet center where you can stand and watch wicked witches and lost cows whizzing by and not be smacked asunder by the chaos.

Find that spot. Stay in it as the storm moves. You’ll know you’re there because you can breathe.

 

Softly Wend

Linger, meander, moodle and soft shoe with life.

Stay tender, tender friend.  Soft and pliant like a cloud in God’s windy hands.

 

p.s. if you missed part one, here it is

 

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I WANT to be the gal who navigates intuitively through her life like a star pirate captain, hearing bright new buzzes and fearlessly responding, weaving in and out of dangerous new galaxies in the nick of time.

 

But I don’t actually know how to do that, in almost all areas of my life.  

 

I am, in this moment, resisting the urge to google “how to live more intuitively” because that’s how much I don’t actually know how to live a life that way.  Do I KNOW that that’s the way to go about things?  Yesh, yesh I have read the memes. Yes I watch Super soul sunday. P.s. I am only managing not to google it because I made all my kids hide my devices and am writing longhand. #expert@selfcontrol    #zerohashtagskillz

 

It’s also fun to note that I discovered the depths of my befuddlement while teaching a class on the stuff.  Not awkward at all.  (in my defense, the urge to do the class was nearly overwhelming, and the generous participation of my students created the most downstream path to the clarity I was seeking).

 

I also didn’t know that was what I was really teaching. My mind thought it was guiding people through the framework of The Player’s Way.  My mind didn’t know that the player’s way is and always has been, the intuitive way. My heart knew all along, my heart has always known.

To be fair, I have led a pretty divinely led life, and encountered miracles almost daily since I was a wee teen.  But there was something new about the on purposeness of this event that thrilled me. A lot of my earlier experiences felt nearly out of control and wobbly with doubt, and barely letting it in kind of stuff.12188073_10154304546144202_8314630707216002505_o

 

From my journal: January 23rd, On the rocks at Kettle Cove

this morning I recognized a signal.  Not precisely that I have signals, and am connected to a much larger thing (duh), but I actually consciously recognized what it feels like, in real time, to appropriately and fully respond to the conversation a signal is inviting me into. Very similar to how it feels to respond to a hungry child, tugging at my leg in the kitchen wanting an apple, I listen, I feed, life moves forward, and the integrity and elasticity of the conversation remains intact.  

 

Simple jaunt along the shore that had turned rock climby.  The nearly always present choir of voices singing their various anthems in my head were in a relative harmony and my attention drifted more and more to the wind coming off the ferocious and  unrelentingly turquoise ocean. I felt freshly greedy to have more of that wind.  I wanted to take my jacket off. And let it have at me. Morely. Forever morely.

 

I note my state of being because I fidn it’s easier to hear and properly translate intuitive urges when you’re not crackling with anxiety.  

 

Then I heard it. Or more, felt it, an anxious feeling in my belly when I thot of taking a particular direction in my life, one that had been up for me for a week or so.  

 

And then the revolutionary thing happened: I said okay, we don’t go that way.

 

I’m just gonna listen.  Hungry child, apple.  Simple.

 

I’m hearing that, for whatever reason, this is a no-go right now.  I’m not going to give it another thought or explain my decision, not even to myself.  I’m gonna give the kid the apple and move on.  I’m gonna trust the system, trust the urges, trust my bright yesses and not get overly fascinated by my no’s, and generally trust my higher self leading me along the pathways that are best for me.

It’s easy to get really sweet on what is a no.  It feels irksome and the urges to give it a lot of attention can be nearly overwhelming.  When we set up our mental basecamp around a No, we locate our energy and the conversation of our life around the wrong question, and begin to drift and steer haphazardly, without that compass twang of being on path.  

 

I should note that the idea made every logical sense in the world. The new proposed business plan was both magical and logical AND an answer to some of my recent askings.  In other words, it should be a hell yes, but it made my tummy feel nervous in the not fun way, and every time I thought of moving ahead with it I got those cave walls falling in feeling that comes when I’m going in the wrong direction.  

 

In hindsight, I can see that if I had not acted on that intuitive intel, and had powered through and done it anyway, I would now be extricating myself, dramatically, from that situation now because the people who were involved have had a major change of life and are not ready to form that level of partnership.  

 

I see now that my higher self up ahead was putting out a long and lusciously far reaching beacon for me to see and follow.

 

Pause to feel the depths of my gratitude for that listening. What an extraordinary self kindness.  Thank you past self, thank you.

 

Why am I making such a big deal about this?  Because I think we’ve lost familiarity with the conversation our higher guidance is trying to have with our daily lives and only access that wisdom in sporadic moments of mediation or in retreats.   Our daily intuitive muscles have atrophied from self doubt and misuse.  

 

It all sounds so simple. And so obvious, like, what the hell else would you do?  But in practice, it can feel SO DIFFICULT to hear an inspired urge and act on it. It can feel like trying to become a barnacle or to win a hot air balloon race without a balloon, like, even a little red latex one, never mind a hot air one with a basket n’ shit.
We live such beautifully booming and full lives. There is SO much to compel our attention and we know that where our attention goes, so goes our life, so, it’s a radical act of self love to learn how to give more and more of our attention to the total conversation that these inspired urges are ultimately inviting us into. And not to do it half heartedly, but with total swag.  The way a playa might make it rain in a club or how Beyonce might do, well, everything she does. Boom. Doing it. Doing my Real Life, listening for urges, and following them. The end. Boomity boom boom.

Next up: How to actually work out those intuitive muscles via play

 

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I’m doing a course that requires people to really adventure each week. The kind that gets under your skin. The kind that takes you out of your skin. and leaves you a tad skinless on your own shores. A few of the students keep asking how to adventure. And after pushing it off, ‘I’m taking a stab at the fucking how. Tho, writing about skinless shores is not The Easy.

How to fucking adventure

0. It’s a little a lot like the advice for how one might learn to fly in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, meaning,

“You must learn how to throw yourself at the ground, and miss. Pick a nice day and try it. The first part is easy.”

1. In the movie Spanglish, the dad character played by Adam Sandler gently wakes up his kid with, “good morning. It’s not time to wake up. It’s not even time to think about waking up, but it’s time to think about thinking about it.” Pause for effect. “Are you thinking about it?”

You are the Adam Sandler dad character. Tiptoe on into your psyche-lair, fun house-dance land. Find your sleeping sloth teenager Fascination and gently whisper to her that it might be time to start thinkin’ about waking up.

2. Stop cleaning and tidying e’rr thing.

Take a stab at learning to abide and breathe through the part of you that simply will not, shall not! abide any unclosed gap, even if the gap isn’t ready to close, even if the question hasn’t been truly answered, even if the journey is not over, the closing note yet to sing out. There’s a level of presence of big picture lens wearing that helps here.

Also helpful: get friendly with primordial ooze. It is on the chaotic edges of the oceans where the vast majority of sea life teems, writhes and frothily abides. Don’t clean up what doesn’t want cleaning. Don’t unduly or prematurely tidy or you’ll become allergic to the chaos necessary to adventure.

This doesn’t mean going full slob, it means learning to make distinctions around when you are unnerved by a thriving ecosystem because you’re not up to speed with the boom whoosh or when something is truly broken or needs a clean up. The crux of the distinction for me lies in my emotional response, the first makes me feel uncomfortable and I just want to clean it away, where as a true urge to clean, mend, heal, restore order feels relieving, bettering.

Abraham asked a woman who was struggling over the mess in her house, “when is your house actually clean?” She replied. “When I’m all alone, when no one is there.” And she realized that the mess that she was so bothered by was actually the beautiful mess of a creative life in progress. Once she made peace with that, she could develop systems to keep her home clean without being emotionally triggered by the delicious primordial ooze of the creative process.

And, all honest lives are creative expressions of pure life force energy. As such, they require whatever the essential artist requires of her inner and outer studio: wild spaces, quiet places, and hidden aces. To keep her in inevitable proximity to the essential vitality.

3. Tigger the shit out of the impossibility. By its very nature, an adventure will carry you into chaos of impossibility, that’s what makes it an adventure: a direct encounter with your personal threshold in an area of your life in manner that allows you to explore and even push out that edge a little.

You can use the energy and details of that impossibility like a navigational star chart. The difficulty, impossible situations, and primordial oozes all bring a laser focus to the exact place you need to activate your powers. So useful, if you’re into that kind of thing.

At such an impasse you have to tune in about 200 clicks to be able to discern or invent a way around. You may find yourself stranded and have to dig very deep for sleeping and forgotten resources and skills and capacities. This is the moment when you may realize you are on an adventure and that you don’t want to call for help. You actually want to be the help.

4. Which brings me to my next bit, kick the stool out from under you. Or as Cortez and Alexander the Great did, burn your damn boats.

Here’s an example: while on the Travel By Yes mission, my friend asked if I wanted to bike to a cafe 5 miles away. We were traveling with 13 people in 3 large rigs, with little time for personal exploration, (which, is so effing important to me). At the time, my biking playground was closed. I had a bunch of ideas about why I wasn’t biker and didn’t like it. But my desire to be free was slightly louder than the voices telling me I couldn’t bike. So, I said yes, I didn’t know I was saying yes to the tiny tip of the iceberg of adventure that I could see, and that I would have to continually up and expand my yes to keep up with the bigness of the adventure as it carried me deeper, further than I’d ever been before.

Here’s how it went: Becca and I sailed out at dawn off the top of the mountain where we’d camped the night before in the rigs with the 13. I can still feel the exhilaration and absolute life force thrill of pulling out onto the open road for the first time. Especially because those first few miles took us down a very steep mountain downhill, crazy fast downhill, in and out of the first rays of sun dropping me back into the cool pine dense patches of shadow, me whizzing so fast, and absolutely that every thought left my head.

Then a hill that I had to climb appeared, and I instantly wanted nothing to do with it. I remembered clearly why I didn’t like biking. That uphill crap was for over achievers! But Becca the Butt was up ahead, clearly not stopping, clearly not struggling. Did I want her to leave me in the dust? I did not. And fuck going back up that nine mile sheer drop off of a cliff I’d just come down.

So forward, up the next Vermont mountain became my yes. And when I tuned in, I realized something neat and unexpected, my legs actually liked it. I mean, they REALLY liked what they were doing. The precious burning, the all in fucking going for it, like a corvette that’s been unused in a garage for a year just wants to rip it all the way out on the highway.

I also discovered that laziness was thinking was an absolute no go. The second I started thinking negatively, I started to lose steam whatever steam I had, immediately. This became increasingly important as the miles unfolded (it turned out to be TWENTY SIX miles actually. I have the best skanky lie-face bitch best friend ever) and I had long since completely drained whatever known batteries in my legs, and started operating on god knows what stuff. I was approaching the part of an adventure that gives it its street cred.

Do you know the part? If you’ve read this far, maybe you do. Maybe you’ve been ushered into an exquisite new corner of the secret garden of yourself on the wings of an adventure. I’m talking about the part of an adventure that steadily holds you over some chasm that you’ve been backing away from in your normal waking life, and here, now, in this heightened state you are suddenly in a situation where it’s inevitable that you are going to make it across, mostly becasue you have no other choice (I cannot emphasize the burning your boat thing enough, burn, baby, burn).

And so, with trembly legs and wobbly emotional swings like a bipolar rhino in heat and on angel dust, I had to find that part of me that I hadn’t seen in awhile, that secret sixth gear.

Those last “five” miles I rode in my newly rediscovered sixth gear, somewhere I’d not been in a long while, and never accessed biking. Here’s where the game of me using language to carry you the reader along falls apart. To say I was exhilirated and beyond my own yen is tiny. To say I was seeing as God sees, tasting everything, tasting the music of the wind and feeling how lusty and wild the sun is, pales in comparison with the fullness of that unforgivably alive state.

(Yeah I’m talking about how All-In, inevitable Burn Your Fucking Boats adventures fling you into the optimal state of being known as Flow, but I wanted to be a little complicated and storytelly so maybe you’d feel and not try to know it so much, and maybe even glean a taste for the possibility of it, maybe even remember a little of the essential lust to be all the way alive. Which is the beginning of every endeavor worth its salt.)

4. Bare the stark and haunting sudden wallop of loneliness and freezing isolation that comes when you disengage from the steady warm drizzle of distracting yourself, rather than engaging your life.

And by this I very much mean: I dare you to leave your fucking phone at home.

5. Expand and enliven your adventure repertoire. An adventure is determined by the state of being of the participants, not by the action. Last night, dancing on my roof and then painting translated dreams onto people’s arms and backs was not an adventure for me, but a pleasantry. I do it all the time. It was vivifying and delightful, but took me nowhere near my personal edge.

It’s more of an adventure for me to sit through a conversation with a lover and not run away even though I’m saying what’s really true for me and that terrifies me and makes my legs wobbly and knees nauseous. I know it’s an adventure because tho 99% of me wants to call a lifeline in to haul me out of the jungle, one very important percentage of me wants to break through into the secret sixth gear. Every lover has a secret sixth gear! What a fucking thot!

6. Explosive shit ass day got you down? Great! Use all that nutrient rich emotional volatility to launch yourself off on a really fucking great adventure. Next time you get into a tangle or a fuzzle and don’t know what to do with yourself, just walk out the door. Just how you are. Keep walking. Make up the rules that feel right to your as you go. They’re the right ones for right now.

May your fuss be a mighty wind to launch you into Mighty Adventuring. Don’t Netflix it away when you could use that magnificent and unresolved passion to blow your sails straight back.

7. Hang the fuck ON! When your soul is calling you towards adventure, the Universe responds, powerfully.

Adventures that feel so bright and right, feel so, because they are so.

Adventures concierge you into little known parts of yourself, make the connections, and help you really get to know the city of your secret sixth gear self. But you’ve got to participate by staying focused on the game at hand, tending your thoughts, renewing your yes as it deepens and leaning into the fun in your own unique way.

8. Keep your ear to the ground (you’re always listening for buffalos).

Depending on the nature of the adventure, your primary mode of moving through the adventure may depend entirely on your own fascination; in any given situation, there is always something a little more glowinger than other options.

That’s the right way. And the more woke up and dressed for success your own fascination is, the quicker you’ll be able to identify the glowingest bit and take timely action to engage it fully.

Adventuring well is like log rolling, if you stop before the river has carried you to the other side, you get immediately rolled. In extreme sports this can mean death or mega injury. In adventures of the heart, it might mean becoming inauthentic and misrepresenting yourself. Either way, the heart of the adventure begins to immediately die the moment you stop truly conversing with her.

9. Become fluent in the language of Heart of Adventure. It’s in the options for languages on the app Duo Lingo. Just kidding. Just kidding about being just kidding, how do I know? It probably is and I didn’t have the girl balls to expect it or go looking for it.

Beyond issues of girl balls and language acquisition, you’ve got to remember that the heart of adventure speaks a unique language as rare and endangered as a polar bear and that by becoming fluent in it we not only preserve an ancient and essential dialect, but add to it because in the moment you leap o’er that chasm, grow those wings, and do the impossible thing, some new and as yet nameless essentiality sails into being.

Embedded in the very sailing forth is the urge to name, to know, to own, to control, to be able access more fully. That urge awakens the fairies of language to shape and shadow, to light and set on fire the nameless impossibility we’ve just found, by gifting it a name.

10. Let life do you. Once when I was cramped and confused sexually, I followed some bright and inspired urges, which led me to an interesting relationship with a partner who loved S&M.

For a gorgeous span of sexual adventuring I recovered my inherent capacity to let go and let life do me.

It took me out of the part of my thinking apparatus that confusedly felt that it needed to organize, fix, support and do everything. The adventure gently and sexily walked me into a very receiving trusting, relaxedly passive and curious way of allowing life to inspire, lead, and astonish.

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12188073_10154304546144202_8314630707216002505_oI have been successfully doing tiny playful habits for 10 days without failing, so … I’m pretty much an authority on the subject.

Ok, joke.  But I am PLAYING AROUND WITH HOW to turn my gorgeous human attention in the direction of those things, experiences,  and playgrounds that are more deeply meaningful, the things that if you don’t do them in this life, you-ain’t-gonna-be-okay kind of things.

I call those Dream Meridians.  You know you’re on one because the world lights itself on fire in response to the absolute joy you feel when you find a way to play on one.

I used to be a strong proponent of the do it whenever freeball approach,  but here’s the dealio — you’ve got to be IN RANGE of inspiration, consistently, if you’re going to rely on it as a catalyst for doing your good work.  And playing your good play. And yessing your yessiest yesses.  Here’s why I am no longer in the Freeballer Club.

  • inspiration is a wobbly mistress. She comes during peak moments of great joy or insight, after Burning Man or a meditation, or suddenly while doing dishes. You can’t rely on her showing up. As Jack London says, “You can’t rely on inspiration, you’ve got to go after it with a club.”  For me, that club has become setting up daily playful habits that get me in range of where inspiration lives.c
  • where we focus, we go.  Wherever you put your attention, your life follows.  You can choose to steadily put your attention on what matters to you most, on your Dream Meridians, and it’s okay. No one is going to hate you for developing discipline around your heart’s mission. I mean, they might, but as the sage Taylor Swift says, “haters gonna hate,” so, focus on what blooms you and sets your heart on fire.
  • what you focus on creates how you feel and what you get

Imagine a pinball machine with no flippers to keep the ball going where it needs to go. Not that fun.   Pretty sure there would be no pinball wizards anymore.

Like those useful flippermajiggies, your playful habits begin to determine the direction of your life.

Inspiration is a frequency, like anything else, it’s a state of being.  You achieve any state of being by directing your thoughts.  If you want to steadily enter a state of inspiration where your creative projects flourish, you’ve got to set up some habits that support that happening.

 

BUT HOW do you develop habits and playful rituals on your Dream Meridians?

Story time:

As a deeply creative child, I had no relationship with making on purpose habits.  I’d get into little nooks of time, seasons, where I’d do something because it pleased me, or served me in some way. Something would inevitably interrupt the cycle, often, something as simple as running out of ink and forgetting to replace it. Or a friend would visit for a week and when they left, I would forgot to return to the thing I was doing before.

And all of that was fine, but as I got more and more reflective on the whole shebang, I realized that my happiness levels and “success” or positive response from the world with which I was interacting directly correlated with those seasons where I was painting every morning, or adventuring and building fairy houses every afternoon for an entire summer.  Those seasons of direct engagement with my wild creative impulses held other doors open as well and things moved.

As an adult, a coach and a teacher of conscious play, the thing that throws off my emperor’s new groove, more than any other, is me falling behind on the things that bring me the most joy. Losing access to my playgrounds because I get distracted and let my attention go every which way, and while I’m mildly enjoying the distractions and scenery of a freeballin’ life, my deepest heart of hearts is a little grieving the deeply satisfying play I get access to when I steadily show up for a dream.

So I’m learning to play with habits.  Just like I play with parenting, with my own ideas of home, and with love.  Only, habits feel scary. Turning towards my own conversation with habits kind of lights my resistance on fire, like, I don’t want to be a dictator for anyone, especially me! Or, who am I to say what I should be doing?

Well, shit, who else would know? I can see that part of my wishy-washyness stems from self-doubt, doubt that I can actually know and breathe and live and take direction out of my own intuitions.  And in this busy, information rich world, I need habits that help me tune into my own intuition.

So, got that, right?   You can feel those areas that would be supported by consciously aligned habits, right? You feel better when you walk or run every day, that kind of stuff. But then comes in the New’s Year’s Resolution Syndrome where, in an inspired huff, you swear to change some part of yourself and to develop a new positive habit and you’re SO MOTIVATED in the moment of making that, and so focused on what you’re wanting to experience that for a few days, it actually works, and you keep up with it, and you feel GREAT about yourself and your life.  But then, something interrupts, and you skip it or lose the thread. And feel badly, but then, BACK ON, renewed vigor, I’m GONNA DO IT THIS TIME! You buckle in, determine harder. Motivate more, read more memes, and blogs.

But then you don’t do the thing again, and again and eventually you either convince yourself you didn’t really want to in the first place, or you just distract yourself from thinking about it cuz it’s too painful to feel like a failure.

And I have danced with this cycle on about every front in my life.  And the failure to change thing can be really damaging to your core vibration, to that calm and steady tone of “I love me. I’m perfect in my now and always becoming more.”

Which is why I’ve come to think of habit development as a way of holding certain vortexy doors open for my life to flow through and my Dream Meridians keep showing up.  And choosing not opening up other others cuz they’re less bright.

 

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I’ve festival these sweet buns on and then back off again, sang hallelujah beneath a waterfall with other exhausted dancers and gave back our tears to the river, you know the tears, the ones that come when you are so IN that the only response left is to become the river. In my life of mucho shared play and revelry, I’ve also fallen apart, had my tent stolen, had my massive tent destroyed by storm, lost kids, lost myself, and found my deeper self each time. I’ve learned a few things.  This was written, originally, for those who are coming to the upcoming Yescapades, but I decided to share it with you cuz, it tis the season of revelry.

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1. Establish your Fort/ode to You love nest/nook/alignment pod
When we play deeply and in new and expansive ways, we get tired, we get off, stuff comes up.  Creating a space for to take good care of you allows you to stay with the playful momentum and to be awake and renewed and in your groove when the next Yes comes.  When we don’t get what we need, we shut down.  Creating a little nook as homage to your brightest spark signals a deeper ignition.
So, first things first, you’ll set up a tent or build a fort for you.  We have fort experts who are here to hang sheets, ribbons, and play open this tender little space with you.
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our resident fort building experts. Mackerel, in the middle, is unusually overdressed

It’s a simple thing, really, sheets over a tree limb and a pillow can do.  The key bit is that it’s there when you need to recharge, or to be alone.  Often festivals and shared play experiences wear people down because they don’t have a zone to just come to center.

Next, stock your alignment pod with the tools and things that help you come to center. A temporary alter to your joy?  A project that’s been hailing you?  Mine has a simple mat and sheet to sleep on, a great pen and something I feel excited to write on, a candle and a sparking thing.  Some music making thing.  And beauty.  A flower, a wispy, light catching thing.
Now, leave it.  It’s there for just you.  There if you want to party with yourself or to invite someone in for tea, poetry or to watch the stars from your fort.
2. Don’t. Over. Think. It.
If you feel a buzz, come. The end.
We lose trust with our core selves when we second guess our intuitive urges.  We rebuild that essential relationship when we begin to listen without our questioning or judging.
3. Scan your range of emotions about the Yescapades
What’s your mix?
This composite, whatever is, is what you’ll experience.  Got a hodgepodge of wariness, curiosity, excitement and worry?  That’s the kind of cake that’ll come out of the oven.
If you want a different, tastier, less confused cake, make a better recipe.  I like to lean in the direction of the things that are bright for me. Worry is an old, unfun habit and when I lean towards my genuine thrill, worry loses traction, easily, like a leaf falling off a tire as it dries.
Try doing a rampage of what you’re excited about for this experience and really knuckle into the bright bits, looking for the sweet meats and expanding on them.  Doing so will bring you back into range of your original bright intuitive urge to say yes.  Rampages usually start slow and build momentum. If you’re not familiar with that momentum, enjoy playing around with the sheer thrill of building positive momentum.
You can also do a grid on how you want to feel during.  Put on some captivating toons and then type into the ‘vision cloud’ emotional words that truly evoke.  Feel each one, and let the next word take you deeper into how you want to feel. Journey with the words. Feel free to repeat. It’s about the tone you’re evoking, not about originality or word accuracy.  Have fun with tone finding and activating.
This is perhaps the most important step because this tiny bit of ‘work’ sets you on an entirely new path.
4.  Pack intuitively.
Like in Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium where the bouncy balls kept jumping back into the customer’s bag. They wanted to adventure with that fella!  What wants to come with you to the Yescapades?  is there a journal, a scrapbook, painting, project, tinker toy sculpture that you’ve been longing to play more deeply with?  Does it want to come along? Ask!  And then pack accordingly.
Deep play is DEEPLY inpsiring and you’re going to have a lot of insight and creative inspiration flowing through you. You may want to bring your nets to catch those butterflies!
We love what happens to a ‘normal’ day when you approach it from the coccoon of some unexpected dressing, a costume, or a sparking or new way of dressing.  The unexpected element adds both an element of playful unknown to each interaction, and an invitation for the world to play with you back.
Also! playing with dressing differently can be a journey of discovery into the flavors of you. This is a perfect opportunity to explore the infinity of flavors that you are and are forever becoming.
5. Trust that the yes will deepen.
That urge to say yes to this retreat will soon lead you to an even deeper and sweeter yes.  And as you continue to play with, in and through it, you’ll discover the yes beyond all other yesses (spoiler: You are that Yes.)
Get ready to meet, and to play deliciously, with that Yes.
belize cave

 

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The situation:    

You’re working at home or in a small office, or the family’s been on screen time too long, and there’s a long stretch ahead but your body is just not happy, layers of stress and stuck energy have you feeling all tweaked out and grunkled.

Maybe you’re in the habit of responding when your body needs some attention, or this is a brand new level of self care for yourself, either way these  2 “fake” fixes will rock you new. 


1.   Foga  
 ( Fake + yoga = foga)  maybe faux-gahhh?

Gather up anyone in your vicinity, or go it yourself, then put on some crankin’ tunes
( just click the crazy face below and you’re half way there)

Pick music that feels “next” for you, relieving in some way.  Music can be a bridge back into the yum.  Don’t think about it.  Pick the one that has a buzz.  It’s the right one.Solo Foga:     Tune into your body and begin to move the way your body is asking, maybe it’s crazy wiggling and shaking and jumping up and down.  All your movies are in response to some inner cue from your body.  Maybe you stay in ragdoll through out the whole song.

Even taking the time to ask your body what its wanting reestablishes trust between your body and yourself and helps the body mind connection be more friendly and function..

Group Foga:    gather in a circle near music and have each person do whatever move their body is wanting/needing. And the rest of y’all do it too.  Simple.  Elegant. And usually (in my crowd) twerk heavy.

Encourage trueness.  If their body is really wanting something, chances are my body wants it too.

I love this form because we sometimes do deep Dave O’Shana deep energy clearing techniques, ninja stuff that challenges me, or an inspiring 20 sequence of sun salutations, all of it happening in a super fun and relaxed atmosphere that keeps my resistance at bay and my willingness up.

We incorporate these into meetings, family gatherings, or just our daily lives.  It’s a powerfully fun conscious play practice that brings cohesiveness and fun to anyone who wants to get jiggy with right now.

“In dancing and singing, you are discovering and releasing the energy of emotion, allowing it  to flow through you and out of you.”  Gabrielle Roth

2.  Fance Parties

I dance like I breathe: all the damn time and deliciously.  It’s a wide open playspace for me but it used to be something I secretly dreamed of.  Fake dancing changed that.  When I fance, I don’t try to get it right; I try to get it fun.  And fun is a generous and forgiving goal.   When I fance, I am not caring what others think of me, I only care if I’m in the groove and loving it.  If there’s one thing I’ve come to know its that if the soul calls a dance party, you gotta pick up the phone however you can.

What you’ll need:  headphones, a music makah, and a private space.  I like bathrooms.  Especially public ones.  The private kind with a light you can shut off and a lock is the best.   I can’t tell you how many roadtrips have been restored back to shimmery awesomeness by me twerkin’ out in a reststop bathroom.

the method: , lights off, lock the door, headphones in and volume on high.

I turn my Iphone away from me so as I whirl, it splashes lights on the walls of the room, like a private club, just for me and my fantastic and always perfect fance party.

Faking something gives you permission to bring a beloved way of playing closer to you, and allows you some kind of access.  Touching it all, reignites and opens all kinds of doors.  What can you start fake playing with now?  Foccer?  Folf?  Feditate?Sometimes I can’t find time to properly meditate, but I can close my eyes at a red light and breathe three perfect,deep breaths.  I can pause outside the door before I enter a meeting and close my eyes and find my calm quiet center before going in.   Where can you fake it wide open?

Loving you,
Natalie

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“After a bomb killed two dozen young people at a Tel Aviv Disco a few years ago, Israeli youth refused to be cowed.  They resumed a robust nightlife.  Today, outside the scene of the bombing, beneath a stone memorial listing the names of the dead, is a single inscription: LO NAFSEEK LIRKOD.

It means, “We won’t stop dancing.”  –Gene Weingarten, The Washington Post Magazine

Tool:  Allowing a playspace to deepenBackstory:    Yeah, so okay, I’ve been totally watching cheesy dance movies all by myself and LOVING THEM and feeling wildly inspired by them.  AND yeah, I totally passed on going to a two week dance camp.  And have decided to not go to ecstatic dance anymore.  AND yeah, I’ve totally been dancing alone in crazy places, in bathrooms, on the roots of trees that crawl out over the precipice of an island with new baby eagles, in the driver seat while the whole car is rolling with wild dancing people.

As my daughter infamously once said when she woke from a nap, inside of a crib that was being moved onto the moving truck, “What the heck is doing?”

What the heck IS doing?

I think what is doing, is that my dance playspace is deepening, like a hue, like an inevitability, like an epic tale.

And if I try to stay doing the same things, and pretending I am satisfied by them I’ll get nutzo and probably try to eat someone to relieve tension.

Playspaces are where we get to keep up with our expansion.  The play itself becomes a boat that locates us on the river of life and allows us to stay afloat, and lets the spirit whoop it up in the human realm, but that boat keeps moving.   And instead of clinging to where my dance boat has taken me, I’m becoming curious about where it’s taking me now…

I know that dance is where my body becomes a net for what the soul requires. So, just like in a relationship, I must stay present in the conversation, truly listening for what is next, what wants to come through this gorgeous net.

 

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What I want more of:  More lined up intentions.   OMG, do I love synching up intentions!  When players share a similar willingness and vision for the dance there is so much harmony and honey.

I want MISSIONS and high jinxs and impossible moments and deep, edgey play at the edges and in the centers… I want to join with people in high up places via dance. I want more body skills to go deeper into the play. I’d love to have a few wonderful local dance partners who help me explore the edge, who are listening, who don’t want to wallow in the stuck places, who are so familiar with joy and blooming that the compass of dance plays points to the second star to the right and straight on ’till morning.

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We’ve just soft-launched the new website. Softly, because, softly feels good for right now.  Softly, I am moving onto the new 100 acres on a river land, and launching the next phase of our play community. Soft and real and listening I go.  Soft, and close to the pulse.  Soft and friendly I stay with my dance in everything.  Soft, loving, connected.  I decided to ditch the old one, entirely.   It lived in a land where I was still in the closet about how effing magical the playful life is.  I wanted to create a new canvas that could accommodate the big, whiz banging leaps that come when you’re playing in being a deliberate creator, when you are addressing the energy beneath a situation instead of reacting to the situation.

I hid that element because I was still in other people’s business.  I was worried that Mom would find it offensive that I believe that I am brimming with the Creative Life force that she calls God, and that where I direct my life energy, is what I create more of.

I didn’t want to link myself with all the people who were talking about Law of Attraction and Being on Purpose in ways that felt cluttered and unfun.    I was worried about being misunderstood  …

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But I’ve realized that my worry about being misunderstood is an integral part of my own process of finding full resonance with something.  It’s a part of the journey to having full permission to be where I am and love what I love and dance how I fucking please.So, the next time I’m worried about being misunderstood I’m going to celebrate that as a very tangible reference point on the journey to big, usable clarity, and the more clear I am, the better my magic is.

I’ve noticed a kind of kind of secretive tendency around success, where we want to cover up our tracks.  To protect our secrets, but that feels really unfun and untrue.  Success, for a clear-hearted player is always going to have an element of what we call ‘energy work’ and will likely involve a magic tool.  Because we live in an ever expanding Universe we must go with the Goingness in order to stay healthy, frolicking and properly Whee-ed.

Before I came out of the magical closet, I was only dealing with the tip of the iceberg.  Now, there is this enormous freedom in my work with players, where I can truly help them discover the magical keys to their own kingdom.  To be whole hearted and totally honest in my play, what a gift to myself.

I’ve noticed that sometimes a player gets stuck where their identity can’t accomodate their forward growth. This was true for me.  I was nervous about perpetuating that myths that play is not meaningful or pivotal to a happy healthy life.  I was protecting my creds.  And now, I’m protecting my delight in going with the Goingness, and using my focus to appreciate and lean into the places where people are playing, deliciously, in the magic.

Celebrations:

Playing lightly and loosely in community has turned over in ways that are 5,000% magical, with 100 acres of riverfront property just landing in our laps, and a whole festival arriving to build our buildings for us, and a fancy boat showing up and there’s buried pirate treasure and an island!  Every morsel of it is more magic and fun than if I had tried to strong arm and make happen, rather than dance lightly and dream forward.

I want More Of:

I want more joining, more comrades, more playmates, more shared delights!  I want more stories of magical connections, Jedi movements, and magic carpet rides through this time space reality.

I want to live in a world where magic is rampant. Where things turn over in ways that feel miraculous, where we’re dancing in the filaments of beingness and the fullness of our dance there releases the hounds of creative power and the dance changes everything. And you wake in a world brand new.

I want more feeling comraded in Being on Purpose.  I want more stories of Jedi lusciousness.  For myself and for others.  I want more of a conversation and acknowledgement around the magical thread inside the brimmingness that is play.

Invitation:

I love being played with and love full conversations.  Magical darlings, where is magic alive for you?  Comment your magic hearts out below…