Tag: transformation

Transformation Starts With A Dream

Stuck, Frustrated, and Pissed Off

In my work as a transformational mindset coach, I spend a lot of time helping people to become living embodiments of Real, Radical, Transformational Positivity. It’s BIG work designed to help folx create positive change in their own lives first, so that they can experience the healing for themselves and extend it into their relationships. Think of it as a ripple of positive transformation that flows outward.

Whenever I begin work with a new client, they are often in a place where they feel stuck and very, very frustrated. They’ve been trying to move forward on an old goal and just don’t seem to be making any real progress. They’ve been spinning their wheels or going in the same circles and are just worn out from trying so hard, but yielding little if any results.

They’re PISSED OFF and bummed out, exhausted and ready to give up on their entrepreneurial dreams.

They’re this close to quitting, but are open to giving it one more try.

If I can help them to make even one positive shift, however large or small, it is often just the nudge they needed to look at things differently and create the momentum they want. From there, it’s amazing how the missing pieces begin to fall into place.

It Starts With A Dream

One of the first things that we will typically do together is have a fresh look at their dream, their goal, or the idea that they’ve been holding onto. Sometimes, they’ve lost the plot and have made their vision try to be something that it was never meant to be; other times, maybe they’ve skipped past the big dream entirely or tried to make it too small, too tame.

I challenge them to dream again.

Let me encourage you to make a hot date with yourself this week for some serious daydreaming (don’t push it off to next week, please… trust me on this one).

Get Expansive. Dream BIG. Give yourself the time and space to get creative. Imagine something spectacular for yourself. Fantasize about a massive lottery win. Envision what solving one of the world’s greatest problems might look like.

Because the fact is there is NO good reason why you can’t enjoy some time thinking big, having a fantasy, or imagining a better world. This is the way that change happens: it starts with a dream for something bigger, something brighter, something better than the status quo.

You don’t have to have all of the answers. You don’t have to have it all planned out step by step. You don’t even have to know how to put it all into action (that bit comes later). All you need to do to get it started is to give yourself the chance, the space, and the permission to daydream.

white and pink flowers beside a canister
Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

Lean Into Your Weird

giraffe leaning over fence to kiss blonde middle aged woman

What’s one of the weirdest things about you? What makes you unique, special, gifted? Since I started to embrace and lean into my weird and share about what makes me different, I have been able to use my gifts to help others and do work that I love, whether it’s intuitive readings or animal energy work or transformational coaching.

My Weird Ability With Animals

I am very fortunate to have been gifted with the supremely weird and highly magickal ability to communicate energetically with most animals. To do this, I first survey their body language if available, then connect with the animal’s energy field, and ask if they would like to talk with me or if they have something they wish to share. Think along the lines of a “whisperer” to get the idea. With most domestic animals and pets, I can pick up their thoughts, read their energy, and communicate with them fairly easily, even over a great distance. I always love when I am invited to share a pet’s message with his or her human. You can book an Animal Energy Session with me if you have questions for your beloved pet.

Friends who have traveled with me can vouch for the fact that I can even call some species in their own tongue- dolphins and wolves especially- and have them respond. There was the time in the Virgin Islands when we were in the bay at St. John’s, and I kept sensing dolphins nearby. Our captain said that dolphins aren’t normally in this particular area, but I felt them so I called nonetheless. Moments later, a mama dolphin and her calf appeared not 20 feet from our boat! Sorry, no pics for this one as it happened so quickly!

On a recent trip to Alaska, we visited a private wildlife rescue/sanctuary for animals that have been injured in the wild. They are given care and rehabilitated, but their injuries are such that they wouldn’t survive a reintroduction to the surrounding forests. One of the animal residents is a beautiful wolf. I was invited to call out to her and see if she would respond. I went deep into my bones and called up a howl that told her, “I see you, and I am here with you.” If you would like to watch the video of our call and response, you can do that here: Watch the Video

During this same visit, I was also invited to chat with the local mink, and I was absolutely delighted to be able to connect with moose, caribou, bobcat, wolverine, and a grizzly. Amazing time.

And, in one of the wildest and most dramatic displays of my weird gift ever, a couple of years ago in France I healed a bat who had been attacked by a cat. I would LOVE to tell you all about this encounter, but my story is currently under consideration for a publishing deal so I can’t share the details of the story just yet.

small grey striped cat outside on pebbles carrying a small black bat in her mouth
Lulu with little bat in her mouth. Thank you to Hilda for capturing this photo!

I actually injured myself with that healing session because I was physically unprepared for it, and the folx present around me didn’t intuitively know how to support me during the encounter energetically. I also didn’t trust myself enough to ask for what I needed. I don’t blame any of us for this, it was a weird as hell experience and quite unexpected.

My back went into painful seizure for the remainder of my trip. Thankfully, my two travel companions are both people who are incredibly tuned in energetically; they both offered me comfort and support by leaning into their own weird gifts. I did learn from it though, and should such a need for healing intervention arise again, I will know to ask those around me to hold sacred space- both for me, and the animal in need.

My Weird Ability With Energy & Spirit Guides

Another of my especially “weird” gifts is an ability to read energy and connect with different spirit guides. Ever since I was a child, I could sense things that weren’t always visible to those around me. I later learned that this ability is called clairvoyance, and though it’s something that not everyone readily believes in, I have no doubt about the truth that it is just part of who I am.

I kept this part of me hidden as best as I could out of necessity for many years. Still, other kids knew that I was one of the weird ones and would take every opportunity to remind me. Kids can be cruel in their unfiltered honesty. Try as I might to fit in, to blend, to “be normal” it was just never going to happen. My weirdness would always find a way to show itself.

Eventually, I gave up trying to hide it and just let people see only the weird that I felt comfortable sharing. It was fine (and fun!) to interpret my friends’ dreams for them. It was socially acceptable to turn my visions into poetry. Praying is just talking to a supernatural, unseen being- that I could do publicly without anyone batting an eye, even if the “god” I was talking to barely resembled the polarizing biblical character. How weird is it really that folx can be so up in arms against witchcraft, paganism, and honoring the dead- but are totally fine with taking the bible literally?

The rest of it, the card reading and the spellwork and the spirit channeling and the observance of the moon phases and the animal communications I practiced privately, quietly, discreetly. I would eventually learn that this spiritual exploration is not something to be fearful of, but is in fact an important part of Exploring [Your] Divinity. It’s one of the 4 Pillars of Transformational Positivity.

Wrapping Up In Weirdness

So, why do I share all of this weirdness and woo with you? Because for far too long, I kept much of it hidden out of fear. Very rarely did I let anyone in on just how deeply weird I am, and how much that weirdness delights me. I don’t want to waste any more of my precious time on this earth hiding the weird shit that makes me a certain kind of awesome. I am and have always been and will always be a magickal, witchy woman.

My abilities and practices are definitely too weird and out there for some people, and that’s okay because I’m not here to be everyone’s cup of tea. I am here in service to the Spiritual-But-Not-Religious, the Beautiful Weirdos, the Woo-Curious, the Unapologetically Unique among us. I see you, and I am here with you. Howl, Bitches!

middle aged blonde woman smiling

Check out the variety of Energy & Spirituality services I offer: View Services

The First Pillar: Whole-Self Love [Part 2- The Art of Releasing]

What are some of the first things you do when you come home to rest at the end of a long, stressful day? Do you kick off your shoes, drop off all the things in your hands like your keys, the mail, purse/handbag/briefcase, your phone, an old coffee cup, a bag or two of take-out food and/or groceries and make a beeline to the toilet? (Okay, I admit that I am most definitely taking my phone in with me to watch Instagram Stories while I’m *taking a seat* to pee.) Maybe you also hop into the shower or draw yourself a bath and just let the warm, soothing water do its magic. And WOW- how great does it feel to finally shed those work clothes and slip into something soft, cozy and comfy?

All of these actions are signals to your body that it’s time to take things down a notch. To relax. To quite literally release the excess that you’ve been carrying.

Releasing Creates Space for Positivity & Healing

On the path to Whole-Self Love, one of the most important skills we can develop is the art of releasing our negative attachments. Hurt People, hurt people. This can become some of the most powerful work that we do for ourselves, as it frees us from some of the deeply held pain of our experiences of being human. As we release and heal, we shed our old patterns of negativity and create more beautiful new ways of being in the world, which is what is often referred to as the “Higher Self” or the best versions of ourselves.

Releasing our baggage aka negative attachments is not an easy-peasy, one-and-done flip of the switch; it’s more complex and nuanced and layered. It’s an evolutionary process that requires us to actively face and address the things that we may have spent our whole lifetime trying to avoid, hide from, or cover up. AND… it is through this process of enlightenment where we heal ourselves, and in turn help to ease and end the suffering of others by not perpetuating harm. It may or may not involve forgiveness, it may or may not involve therapy, but it will definitely involve support.

So what are some of the things that we may want to work on releasing? What are some of the negative attachments that we may be needing to face? Whatever you choose to release, will create space for something else to fill it so it’s important that you take a mindful approach moving forward.

There are many different ways that negativity shows up in our day-to-day, and it’s not necessarily all bad. Sometimes finding yourself in a “bad mood” is just an indicator that your body needs more rest, or something nourishing to eat. Sometimes it’s connected to a family member or loved one who is experiencing struggles. Maybe there’s an important or difficult conversation that you need to have with someone, or perhaps a personal boundary has been crossed. Shitty things happen, and we are not immune to them- it’s when it goes unchecked that negativity can develop into something much more serious and require the help of trained professionals. This can look like:

  • Negative self-talk, scripts of our unworthiness, a shame spiral
  • Patterns of self-sabotaging behaviors, unhealthy personal relationships, cycles of abuse or neglect
  • Substance addictions
  • Behavioral addictions

The good news is that no matter where you may be on your Whole-Self Love journey, you can begin to make progress, you can begin healing, you can begin releasing whatever is not serving your higher self today. There are resources available to you, and if you’re not sure what they are or where to look, schedule a free call with me and let’s get you started in the right direction. If it’s something that I can help with, I will, and if it’s something that is beyond my scope (such as clinical diagnosis), I will refer you to one of my many expert colleagues or point you towards additional resources. Even one tiny step creates space in your life for more positivity, and every tiny step forward is evidence of your positive transformation that you can build on. Let your one tiny step towards Whole-Self Love be the act of learning the art of release.

Release & Rest

Hello November! Fall is in full swing here in the Northern Hemisphere, and with it comes a somewhat jarring surge of consumer energy that may feel incongruent with what you observe in the Natural World around you.

The shops ramp up their holiday displays and sales sales sales; FOMO messaging reaches a peak and holds tight through the end of the year, especially with a new decade fast approaching; year-end deadlines only add to the pressure. So what do you do to handle it all with Grace, Positivity and a bit of Sanity for yourself? Take a cue from Nature: RELEASE & REST.

Give yourself permission to be more like a deciduous tree or a hibernating animal. Instead of adding more and more more to your to-do list, RELEASE anything that feels like it requires *too much* of your physical, mental, emotional or spiritual energy. This can be a temporary adjustment, or a more permanent clearing if that’s necessary. Keep your energy focused on what you need the most so that you feel truly nourished & sustained, not stretched & strained.

Remember, you get to show up to your life in the ways that feel best for you. If that means you need to release & rest a bit more in order to restore your energy, then please trust in what your body is asking of you. 💖🦋

Transformational Positivity and Nature’s Rhythms

Transformational Positivity has taught me that I am not about The Hustle. I am not on this planet to constantly be grinding away at meaningless tasks of my own making (or anyone else’s).

I’ve learned how to get everything done that I need to, with ease, and even a fair amount of joy, by tuning into the rhythms of nature & managing my energy accordingly.

On this final day before the New Moon phase, I am mindful of gathering up & tending to any loose ends, making note of what can be handled now, and what can wait. Not trying to add more to my plate, or begin new projects- just finishing what I can of what I started this month in preparation to fully release August and relax into the next cycle. With Ease, and Joy. It’s like next-level Self Care.

If you are starting to feel energetically scrambled, I invite you to resist the external push for MORE MORE MORE and do some gentle reprioritizing of your own. You’ll find the things that truly matter most. 💖🦋

Need some help sorting through your to-do list, or separating yourself from everyone else’s demands on you? Schedule a Spiritual Clarity Reading or a Soul-Mirroring Session with me!

#theblessingsbutterfly #transformationalpositivity #spiritualclarity #soulmirroring #empowermentcoach #moonphases #selfcare #naturalrythms #endofaugust

The Transformational Positivity Summit

How many times have you been going through a difficult or stressful time in your life, and some (hopefully well-meaning) person comes along with advice like this: “Fake it ’til you make it!” “Just be more positive!” “No bad vibes!” “Smile, things could be worse!”

UGH. That’s just really NOT helpful! I have been so frustrated with the fake positivity like this that permeates social media and the damage it creates in it’s wake. Humans, even the most enlightened, awakened, spiritual among us all still experience the very real, very human emotions that constantly get labeled as “negative” [read: BAD]. The thing is? When we are being taught to stuff these down, ignore them, or otherwise bypass them, we deny a vital part of our humanity and we deny ourselves the ability to grow, get stronger, and heal our inner pain.

I decided that it was time to create an event that showcases strong women from around the world, women who are doing wonderful, healing, transformational work in all of the areas that seem to get us bogged down in actual negativity: shame stories, self-sabotage, body image issues, and a lack of love for our true self. I reached out to 24 of my favorite badass, bright light, heart-centered women leaders who are deep-thinkers, thought-leaders, and practical problem solvers and asked if I could interview them to share their stories. They said yes, and together we created:

The Transformational Positivity Summit: Generating a Ripple of Positive Change to Ignite Your Inner Light.

This amazing online event begins February 25th (and it’s totally free!)

Click here to dive in to your most Positive, Transformed life!

With the Transformational Positivity Summit, I’ve brought together some of today’s most interesting & significant influencers in women’s empowerment – for the mind body and spirit. We will share with you some simple secrets for living your most authentic, vibrant, healthy, magical, sexy, spiritual and POSITIVE life!

I am so excited to share this with you. All of these resources, all this knowledge, will be in one place – you won’t have search and search – it’s right here, just for you, free. (VIP Package upgrade also available)

>>>>>This event is MADE for you, dear. Register for Free TODAY. Check out the details HERE. <<<<<

No matter where you are right now, I can assure you that the answers you are looking for start with just one click.

Don’t miss this chance to join me and my amazing friends including Tanya Markul, Dianne Bondy, Linda Joy, Kim Fuller, Dr. Debra Reble, Nicole Lewis-Keeber, Dr. Colleen Georges, Sarah Liddle, Bryna Haynes, Stacy Nai, Tamar Gail, Tracy Neely, Nikki Brown, Dumari St. Angelo, Erin Smandych, Mal Duane, Kelley Grimes, Marcia Mariner, Randi Johnsen, Victoria Crossman, Christine Marie, Angele Cristina, Christina Mathewson, and Annie Vonheim as we share all that we have learned about the Transformational power of Positivity to create a ripple of healing and ignite your inner light!

>>>> Click here to register for free

The Transformational Positivity Summit February 25- March 8, 2019

Giving Up To Gain

For the past several years, I stopped attending church services altogether in favor of ditching religion and religiosity for a deeper, more authentic, hands-on, dirt-under-my-nails, faith-without-borders spiritual quest of healing and enlightenment. I chose to shrug off what had come to feel like confinement and faking it, and just figure out how to connect with and love people in a way that felt a lot more natural and right for me. It has been the best decision I have ever made, and it has allowed me to take all of the good lessons that I learned and apply them (love, kindness, honesty, generosity, justice and forgiveness), while letting go of the elements that simply do not sit well with my soul (patriarchy, judgement, shame-culture and hypocrisy). What it has led me to is an understanding and experience of [God] in ways I could never have reached while staying in the same endless weekly loop that I had become entrenched in.

Please don’t read this as “church is bad” or “I’m better than you” because I truly don’t mean to suggest either of those things. I can say with complete certainty that the church saved my life, and gave me hope when I had none. I have met some of the most amazing people all over the world, and learned more about what it means to love and sacrifice than I ever thought possible. I have seen the best and the worst in people, to be honest, because let’s face it: churches aren’t made up of saints and angels, they are made up of broken, imperfect, (mostly) well-meaning people.

Which brings me to my topic for today- LENT: {Basically} For many Christians around the globe, today marks the beginning of the Lenten season, or the 40 day period leading up to the observance of Easter Sunday. Traditionally, it is a time of fasting, or giving up something tangible/material in order to focus the mind and body on more spiritual pursuits, ultimately celebrating the resurrection of Christ at the end of the fasting period. It can be a powerful tool for deepening one’s faith, drawing deeper into a like-minded community, or both.  However, what I have always found whenever I practice Lent is that I can tap into an incredibly deep reserve of energy, inner strength, and mental clarity, like discovering the universe is inside myself yet so much bigger than just me.  Which, some might suggest, is actually what connecting with God/Spirit/Source looks like. ::mind blown::

So what might be some things worth giving up in order to gain something better? How about giving up:

  • Hatefulness
  • Bigotry
  • Ignorance
  • Judgement
  • Bitterness
  • Negativity
  • Complaining
  • Grudges
  • Rudeness
  • Hurtfulness

…and seek to fill up instead on:

  • Love
  • Acceptance
  • Understanding
  • Compassion
  • Joyfulness
  • Positivity
  • Gratitude
  • Forgiveness
  • Kindness
  • Healing

My primary purpose on this earth is to share the lessons I am learning along the way, and be a guiding light to others. I want to LOVE myself more deeply, I want to love the people in my life more authentically, and I want to spread love to the world around me daily. It’s why I started The Blessings Butterfly, and I hope that you will continue to learn with me and share and be encouraged.  Thank you. <3

universe inside me

#FridayFaves : Tapping, Money, and Mindset Awesomeness with Nicole Lewis-Keeber

Nicole Lewis-Keeber

I’m SUPER STOKED to share about someone who has almost always been a part of my life, but through the magic of Facebook we connected as adults and realized that we have an even deeper bond than just our family ties.  My interview today is with my beautiful, brilliant and amazing cousin, Nicole Lewis-Keeber.  YAY! 

She and I grew up on opposite coasts and only saw each other very sporadically as kids, on the few occasions our family was able to travel from Southern California back to my father’s roots in North Carolina.   Here’s a snapshot of Nicole and the wonderful work she does. Enjoy!


Michelle and Nicole at VenturePOP 2016
Michelle and Nicole at VenturePOP 2016

Nicole is a Money Mindset Master with a background in therapy and life coaching. Using a conversational, engaging, humor-infused approach to complex challenges, Nicole’s talks and coaching programs  guide business owners, coaches, and healers to reveal and release their underlying blocks and barriers to financial abundance, so that they can master their mind, heal their heart, empower their future and make some damn money!

Nicole lives in Lancaster, Pennsylvania with her husband Jason and three fat, happy cats. It is well known that Nicole loves 80’s music, a good martini and heartfelt snark filled conversations with friends.  

 

The Blessings Butterfly interviews Nicole Lewis-Keeber, LCSW (Licensed Clinical Social Worker)

TBB: For lack of a better term, what is your “role” now that you’ve started Nicole Lewis-Keeber Coaching?  NL-K: Speaker/Money Mindset Expert/Life Coach/Therapist.

 

Tell me when and how you got started in your current business.  NL-K: I rolled out the red carpet to my coaching business in March of 2015.

 

TBB: What inspired you to begin this Business? NL-K: I worked with my own Life Coach and the approaches she used changed everything for me. I wanted to do what she did and change lives in the way she had changed mine.

 

TBB: What were you doing before this NL-K: After 18 years as a therapist I was feeling a bit burned out, well actually crispy! So I decided that I still wanted to help people but in a different way. I wanted to work with people on their goals and dreams and not their problems and diagnosis.

 

TBB: In what ways is your Business making a difference, or how do you hope that it will? NL-K: My business and coaching practice has made a difference in a way I had not anticipated. As a money mindset coach I have been helping women who have experienced trauma in their past, reveal and release it’s grip so they can earn more money and be more successful in their business.

 

TBB: What do you love the most about what you do? NL-K: Seeing someone make changes in their life to support their ability to earn more money and feel more confident. I LOVE the “I made more money this month then I have before in my business” emails!

 

Namaste In My Lane

 

TBB: If Current You could go back in time and share a message with You From 5 Years Ago (or 10, or High School- your choice) what advice would you give to yourselfNL-K: I would tell her to take going to the gym serious and to put down the chips. 🙂    I would also tell her that her life is about to change in ways she never imagined and to hold on to her horses! To believe in herself and the possibilities.

 

TBB: What is your favorite daily ritual, and why is it important to you?  NL-K: I use EFT or Tapping as a tool in my tool kit and I use it daily to help me clear negative energy and blocks to allow for abundance and higher vibration. EFT is the practice of tapping on meridian points on the body to shift energy. It can be used to manage stress, deal with trauma and to release stuck energy that is connection to negative emotions.

 

TBB: This is very interesting! Can you tell me more about this? For people who are not familiar with EFT or Tapping, do you have any resources I can direct them to?  NL-K:  Sure! Here’s a link to a Tapping Resource that you may find helpful.

 

TBB: Is there anything else you’d like to share, or advice that you can offer to anyone feeling “stuck”NL-K: If you are stuck, triggered, in pain, or feeling “less than” it is because a part of you is sending you a message. Stop, breathe, and ask your inner voice or pain, what it needs to you to know. There is a gift and a message in each struggle, fear and doubt we have. I promise.

 

TBB: Thank you so much! If you’d like to get in touch with Nicole, you can reach out to her via Facebook (she does lots of Facebook Live videos too!), Twitter, or through the contact form on her website.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nicolelewiskeebercoaching/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LewisKeeber

Website: http://nicole.lewis-keeber.com/

 

***NEW! Nicole has just launched her signature Transformational Wealth Training program and let me tell you it is JAM-PACKED with wisdom and hands-on skills training! From Nicole: “I have successfully worked with my clients to reveal and release the surprising hidden programing that has been keeping them from making more money, and stepping into their brilliance. I am excited to offer you an opportunity to reveal and release your own money blocks, by using the same techniques that have used to help my one-on-one clients. These techniques are powerful and up until now I have only used them with private clients.”  If you would like more info, I invite you to check out Nicole’s program right here.

 

Nicole Lewis-Keeber
Nicole Lewis-Keeber, LCSW         Nicole Lewis-Keeber Coaching

 

Friday Faves: A Farewell to My Friend, Michael Powell

be here now

My first time writing one of these “Friday Faves” was to feature my friend Mikey, a dear friend, talented musician, and gifted photographer.  He was the Luke Skywalker to my Princess Leia, a beautiful and gentle soul with a heart of fire and gold.  He was supportive of my work and always had kind, encouraging words for me- really, for everyone he came in contact with. Every gorgeous photo of me on here I owe to him. When my father died, I gave his cool old cameras and gear to Mike and he was so stoked. Our last photo shoot, just 2 weeks ago, was one of the most amazing and transcendent experiences of my life.  I am choosing to honor him again today as I work through my grief.

michael powell photography and the blessings butterfly

This past Tuesday evening, I got the unfathomable news that one of my best friends had died.

 

I am no stranger to death and loss, yet this one is kicking my ass in ways I have never experienced before.  I am still in some weird state of shock over it all, stuck in a nightmare loop that keeps replaying over and over and over.

 

I just got word Mikey passed away?!?

WHAT?

I’ll know more in a bit…

Omg

My friend Mikey was the kind of guy who made you feel warm, and welcomed, and interesting because he was genuinely interested in you.  He was someone who took great interest in whatever great new thing you were into. He loved to support and encourage people, and would get SO STOKED whenever he and I would share about a new project, whatever it might be.  I loved how our text messages would be a beautiful mixture of silly and serious, profanity and deep wisdom.  Black thumbs up emojis and heart-eyed smileys.  OMG’s and LOL’s.  Ridiculous hashtags.  And always, always joy & kindness.

As positive, inspirational and encouraging as he was to others, he sometimes felt the loneliness that only an artist and creative can truly understand.  That dull ache of creative genius, a desire to share with the world, and self-doubt would sometimes swirl together and in those quiet, darker moments, I always felt incredibly honored when he would reach out to me.  My gift to him was always to speak love, truth, and words of encouragement into his gentle soul, to tell him of all the strength and courage and kick-ass greatness that I saw in him. To push him forward. To remind him that he was absolutely worthy and deserving of good things and joy in his life.

Michael Powell Photography
Photo Courtesy of Michael Powell Photography

I just got word Mikey passed away?!?

WHAT?

Hiking? Fuck I can’t breathe

I know nothing right now…

It feels like a punch in the throat, a donkey kick in the gut.  I’m dizzy. It feels like little cartoon birds and stars are circling around my head, mocking, swirling, as I try to put these impossible sentences together. 

I just got word Mikey passed away?!?

WHAT?

I text him immediately, heart pounding, hoping this is just a terrible mistake:  Hey Friendy are you ok?   No response.  I call his phone, it rings, and I hear his kind, warm voice:  “Hi you’ve reached Michael Powell, I can’t get to the phone right now, please leave your name and number and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.”   FUCK, FUCK, FUCK… is this real? This is not real.  It must be a mistake.  Is my friend really gone?  This cannot be true.   And yet I knew that as awful and impossible to believe as it was… nope I still can’t believe it.

I waited for another eternity, searched Google for news.  Silence, and that nightmare loop in my head.

I just got word Mikey passed away?!?

WHAT?

 

I texted a message to my boyfriend, my fingers trembling, my eyes stinging: “Baby- I think something awful happened to my friend Mikey.”

 

 

be here now
Photo Courtesy of Michael Powell Photography

 

Seeing the transformation that my friend was making in his life over the past year was simply breathtaking.  It was like watching someone truly awaken, breathe in deeply and more fully than ever before. I saw Mikey not just drink it, but chug-a-lug LIFE each and every day, beard dripping with freshly-squeezed and fully savored experiences and triumphs personally and professionally.  His love for nature and hiking went to a whole new level, and seemed to be the missing piece that completed him. He was in the best shape of his life, so healthy, so happy. The last time that we hung out, just two weeks ago, we were talking about how excited he was to go back and attempt to summit Mt. Whitney.  “Of course you will!” I said, “Yeah, I feel good about it,” he said.

Shortly thereafter, the worst was confirmed.  My friend Mikey had made his triumphant summit of Mt. Whitney, he fucking made it, and somehow on the descent, hours after that epic climb to the top- he lost sight of the trail in the darkness, lost his footing, and fell to his death.  I type this and it still doesn’t feel real. It don’t want it to be real; but it is.

I just got word Mikey passed away?!?

WHAT?

Hiking Mt. Whitney… lost his footing…

Omg…FUCK…

I texted my boyfriend again, tears streaming down my cheeks as the enormity of this truth slapped my face: “It’s true” 

10Adventurous
Photo Courtesy of Michael Powell Photography

Over the last few days, I’ve been comforted in some way by the solidarity of mutual grief.  The massive community of friends who knew Mike have been pouring out incredible tributes to him over social media. I can’t help but think he would be so humbled and embarrassed by the attention, yet incredibly grateful for all of the kind words. They are so beautiful, so poignant.  Some are funny, some are deep- just like he was.  I read them and am touched.  I cry, I smile, I ache for their loss because I know it too.  For his sweet mother, I am completely heartbroken. It is a terrible kind of sadness, and she is so graceful and loving in her time of unthinkable pain.

I am impressed by how many different circles of friends Mike had, which is a testimony to his many talents and interests including music, photography, hanging with friends, healthy eating, nature and hiking.  From people who had simply followed his Instagram feed of gorgeous photography and hiking videos, to people who had met him recently, to people who have had the privilege of being his friend for years, some for decades, some for life- each and every one has felt this loss deeply.  Each and every one of us, even if it had been years since they had seen him, felt a special fondness for Mike because that is how he made people feel: so special.  The truth is abundantly clear that the most special one between us, the one constant among a wide variety of friends, is our friend Mike, Mikey, Mikey Punk Rawk, Hiking Mike, Michael.  Rest in Peace, Friendy- every mountain summit is yours now.  #BHN (Be Here Now)

 

Photo Courtesy of Michael Powell Photography
Photo Courtesy of Michael Powell Photography

#FridayFaves: Healing Your Trauma Through Meditation, Featuring Rachel John of Soul BEing

butterfly on rocks

Sometimes you come across a person who exudes such compassion, kindness, peacefulness and genuine love for others that it makes you pause and wonder: How did they get to this place? 

Such is the case with my friend Rachel.  She and I connected online through an exercise challenge; she lives in Wales, I am in the US.  The energy and support within this online group was AMAZING. Truly supportive and really beautiful!  The challenge ended, but several (hundred) of us, mostly women, wanted to remain connected so Rachel soon formed a spin-off group that kept the conversations and support going.

I quickly learned that this remarkable woman was spiritually gifted, intuitive, and an expert at meditation.  YES!  That vibe is my jam!

I wanted to learn more, and asked her if she’d be willing to share her story. I had no idea that the pain and trauma of her past was so similar to that of myself and of so many other women.  I am incredibly humbled that she chose to share her very personal journey me, and allow me to share it with you.  If together we can help one more woman find her voice, find her courage, and find comfort- it’s a win.

The Blessings Butterfly interviews: Rachel John

TBB: What’s the name of Your Business/Company/Product/Project?

RJ: The business is Soul BEing, an umbrella for all tools you need to become whole and reactivate your true being. Mindful Coaching, Meditation, Mindfulness, Chakra Balancing / Energy Healing, Akashic Records Readings, Spiritual Development

TBB: What is your role there?

RJ: I am all roles, creator, strategist, manager, accountant

Soul BEing

TBB: What were you doing before this?

RJ: I was a General Manager in a large chain international restaurant running a £1,000,000+ store, Coaching, Training, Marketing, Selling, Mentoring, the list goes on. Before that I had always worked in Sales of the Service industry most notably my time with Virgin Atlantic Airlines as crew.

 

TBB: In what ways is your Business making a difference, or how do you hope that it will?

RJ: I know, that right now, my Coaching and blend of skills is helping women reclaim their power, voice and independence. It is allowing them to make conscious decisions which positively affect their lives without fear. As Brene Browne would say, “They’re daring greatly” , moving forward in life with courage and love and a new found zest that was absent previously.

I also have a collaboration coming up, which begins November 14th, that I’m very excited about. I’m working with a charitable organisation called Recovery Mummy that helps women suffering from post partum depression and psychosis cope with life after having their babies.

I’ll be running an ongoing Mindfulness Course for parents and children which I know will ease the stress and anxiety the families may be experiencing.

 

TBB: What do you love the most about what you do?

RJ: I love seeing a clients face light up and their joyous reaction when they realize a truth about themselves or they create their own solutions. It’s such a pleasure for me to help people re-discover their own inner power and wisdom and when they suddenly wake up and appreciate their own power and recognize that it was always there to begin with, it’s a wonderful thing to behold.

compassion

TBB:  So what inspired you to start this unique practice? How did you get to this place?

RJ: When I was younger, I was raped.  At the time I told one person who happened to bump into me while I was sobbing in the local train station. I didn’t tell my mother as it was her birthday a few days after and I didn’t want to upset her. I kept it in, squashed it and boxed it up, threw away the key. I became an expert avoider. I was crying inside.

 

A few years later I lost my home, my flat mate had a nervous breakdown, the fledgling company I worked for screwed me over financially, I took them to a tribunal court, I won the case, they didn’t turn up and disappeared, I lost my job and my money. I was destitute.

 

I started again. I always tried to remain positive so when I found a job in my hometown of Cardiff, I returned to live with my Mum. I thought this is my time to reset, save some money and get back to where I was and eventually go back to my adopted town, Brighton.

 

However, the Universe had other plans for me.  I had a beautiful daughter and went from full time to part time, I found a great house and while still getting myself together financially so I could only rent I was overjoyed with our little haven.  I planned on going to University to retrain as a Psychologist, then my new company offered me my own restaurant. I was unsure, my gut was saying no, go to uni but I took the position lured by the money carrot and the promise of security and extra responsibility. Two weeks before I was due to start in my own restaurant I snapped my Achilles’ tendon but I carried on regardless, a second blatant refusal to pay attention to my intuition. It was a stressful place and a difficult transition but I Managed to turn the ailing store around.

 

After only a short couple of years my gut was yelling at me to study again, retrain, go find your niche so I took a long overdue sabbatical to plan my route. While I was off work a male manager took over my store, I had no reason to think that was a problem. One day my area manager contacted me and asked, ‘even though I was off work would I like to go to the annual managers party’, which was a festival style few days in the grounds of the owner of the company’s house. Again I ignored my gut to say no, and agreed after I was persuaded ‘what a great time I’d be missing and all your friends will be there, we’ll miss you’.




On the first night of the festival I was sexually assaulted by the manager who was supposedly looking after my store.  Everybody had been given a one man tent, sleeping bag, blanket, water, and a sign to post outside your tent. I was so exhausted that night I said goodbye to my close friends and left the festival field early to go back to my tent and sleep. I hitched a ride on a tractor with two other women and a guy, walked across our field, took my wellies off, crawled into my tent, zipped up and fell asleep fully clothed.

 

I woke up I don’t know how much later to find a hand down the back of my jeans, inside my pants, this man, this ‘colleague’ in my space. I screamed at him to get out, I was in shock, totally freaked out. The next morning I told one person again, not sure what I was staying. She said he was disgusting, and that was that.

 

I later found out from another colleague that he had lied about the store handover I’d given him, he had failed my store audit, and completely denigrated my character behind my back. Nobody wanted to tell me as they were worried about how I’d react and how it would affect the party. So I was violated in every way.

 

Again I kept quiet.  I moved to a different store, returned to part time hours and to Assistant Manager and started studying Hypnotherapy. I loved the course and boxed up all my past hurt.

 

Unfortunately for me, my General Manager went on maternity leave and the coward that assaulted me was put in her place. At first I coped but bit by bit, he undermined my position by slowly delegating my work until I had nothing of relevance left. He used my part time status as an excuse then tried to have me removed by the area manager by telling him I was unhappy.




After standing in the tiny managers’ office watching these two grown men argue about who had initiated the move, I’d had enough.  I moved restaurant once again to only end up working with his partner. By this time it was too late for me to regain composure. I suffered a panic attack and things went from bad to worse. I became depressed, the following grievance procedure I processed against him in work dragged on and on. The next two years were like a blur as I suffered depression, panic attacks, agoraphobia and cried incessantly.




It’s from here that I carried on studying Coaching, Meditation, Mindfulness, Mindset, my Spiritual development and pulled myself back from the dark edges of life.  I re-found my inner strength and wisdom!  This is why I started my business and this is why I wanted to help women that have suffered without support, not realizing that everything they need is already there inside of them.

stuck

TBB: WOW, Rachel!  You have indeed been through the fire. I am so sorry for the years of pain, struggle and silence that you suffered.  It is easy to see how much of a transformation you have made in your life by finding your voice (and what a powerful example for your daughter too!) 

RJ: Studying Hypnotherapy, practicing and gaining my teaching qualification in Mindfulness and Meditation, counseling, coaching, my Spirituality and my resolve have got me where I am today, two years on. Strong and independent. That’s why I want you to be powerful too.

TBB: Can you tell me about any of your current projects?

RJ: I’m currently working on combining all of my ‘woo woo’ skills with my Mindful Coaching to create a phenomenally powerful and more holistic way to coach. I’ve always tended to look at the whole picture and introduced a little alternative into my coaching but now I’m being guided to totally immerse myself in this work and my clients are loving it.

I’m reading the Akashic Records, (which is a way to connect with your whole timeline or soul line as I like to call it), plus reading a clients Chakras and using these channels as tools to blend together for the fullest picture of the issues the client needs to work through.

They’re having real breakthrough transformations, smashing through old, outdated habits and patterns of thinking and living.

I am currently running a discounted offer for my Akashic Readings to just my group, but would like to extend this to your readers.

It’s an initial taster session at $43, the session incorporates Chakra healing/balancing with the Akashics for a 360 reading into the most important areas of your life. Value for October only, follow on packages are available.

TBB: Is there anything else you’d like to share, or advice that you can offer to anyone feeling “stuck”?

RJ: If you’re feeling stuck look for support. Don’t suffer in silence, reach out for help, for in vulnerability there is strength. When you take action the universe conspires to assist you wherever it can. You are never alone. Someone somewhere will be in exactly the same position as you. Ask yourself how would you help your friend if they were in the same position as you, then go do it for yourself. Failing that call me 😉

TBB: Fantastic! Thank You! How can people get in touch with you to get help with meditation, counseling, energy healing, etc.?

RJ:  You can find me on Facebook at Soul BEing Meditation or in my Facebook group 28 Mindful Days to Happiness  I’m also on Instagram @racheljohn_soulbeing

TBB: Thank you. You are a strong, beautiful human and I’m honored to share this. Blessings upon blessings, dear one. 💜

RJ: 😊😊🙏🏼 thank you xx

Rachel John Soul BEing
Rachel John, Founder of Soul BEing
BIO ~ Rachel is a qualified Meditation and Mindfulness Teacher,  an Holistic Transformation Coach and a skilled Akashic Records Guide who uses Chakra Balancing, Energy Healing and Mediumship to help her clients rediscover their authentic selves.

She is passionate about helping people bring  happiness and balance back into their lives, regain their lost independence, rekindle their creative spark and reignite their zest for life.

Rachel believes that with her compelling combination of practical guidance and spiritual support she guides her clients through an holistic journey of self discovery that ultimately balances the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual selves culminating in mindful harmony.

By making the decision to choose LOVE over fear and being brave enough to take inspired action her clients are taking their first steps to a more fulfilled life of understanding.

She is a Life Coach, a Soul Intention Seeker, a Spiritual Catalyst and Pioneer for Empowerment.

~ BECOME WHO YOU WERE BORN TO BE
~ MAKE THE JOURNEY JOYFUL