When you’re walking for six hours in a day, you’re granted the luxury of precious time to think. And I had a lot of thinkin’ to do – about my health as of late, about how I want my career to move forward, the habits in my life that contribute to my wellness (and lack thereof), about what I want the next steps to be in my relationship, about what I’m sorry for and who deserves an apology, about self-worth and confidence and integrity and motivation.
I found Stratejoy during a time of transition back in 2008 or so. I did the original, original Joy Equation course and when Molly was planning a fantastic and open-ended road trip around America, she and I worked together to host a workshop in Portland, Maine, where I was living. When she and Ken rolled up to my house in their Stratejoy-branded camper, well, it was a lovefest all around. We had a fab weekend making soup and doing yoga and I loved showing off Maine to a couple of newcomers. While I live halfway around the world now, I’m a tribe sister at heart spread Stratejoy’s message on this side of the pond!
I worried I was one of those people who always wanted what she didn’t have and that I would constantly be chasing something other than what I had in front of me.
One day I was sitting in my fancy corporate cubicle about to cry and googled “Life Coach Seattle.” Guess who popped up – Miss Molly Mahar of course! That was 2012, when I took one of Molly’s courses which led me into the personal development/online business world. Fast forward to today, I quit the corporate gig and do the work I love that fits into my ideal lifestyle. It gives me the opportunity to help people and gives me the flexibility that I craved for my life.
Who’s got your back? How do you learn, question, absorb, and teach all the inspiration and advice that flows through life? How do we narrow down the crazy influx of information we’re exposed to everyday? When it comes to enriching our lives, understanding who makes up our community and how their unique role supports us is so important. Understanding your own Ladder of Support Makes sure you’ve got the right people on your team Helps you identify the specific people…
For the last few years, every time I’ve gotten on a plane to fly away from my family, my heart aches. I am almost 30 years old, but I still find myself tearing up while I wait in the security line to fly back to California after Thanksgiving, Winter Break and Fourth of July weekend, knowing it will be months before the whole Brown clan is back together again and longing for just a few more days of drinking wine, playing cards, and watching TV with my favorite people. The truth is, I really love my family and desperately want to live closer to them.
So I have a note in Evernote called “life list” that I haven’t updated since 2011. Wow is it cool to look back at that. Some things are old hat now. Have a baby? Been there, done that. Three things that are still sparking as awesome must dos are: Own a home, develop a taste for wine and see the Northern Lights.
Maybe you’ve been there. If you’re like me, you know you’re on the right track, you know you’re evolving and growing and moving towards that teeny light you can see at the end of the tunnel, but you also aren’t loving the journey.
Who are you, sister? Tell us a little about yourself. Hola! Im Sonia. I’m from the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico. I’m a pediatrician with 90 percent of my work in a private practice and the other 10 percent in the Pediatrics ER. I’m a daughter whose dad is my guardian angel and my tree of life. My mom is my “person” and I am her little butterfly. I am friend whose tribe is my support system both offline and online….
Who are you, sister? Tell us a little about yourself. Hi! I’m Leslie from Toronto, Ontario where I live with my other half of 16 years, Niall, in an awesome high-rise apartment with views of Riverdale Park, the CN Tower and Lake Ontario. In the real world I’m a professional organizer and owner of my revived company called Your Fairy Godmover, which is a full service professional organizing, move coordinating and positive change facilitation company. So, as well as literally packing…
Sometimes it’s still hard for me to unhook from the mistaken beliefs of “perfection” that once raged loudly inside my mind. Perfect weight… “If I lose these 30 pounds I gained in college, then I’ll be attractive again and thus, dateable. And then I’ll be happy.” Perfect job… “If I get a promotion to manager, then I’ll be respected at work. And then I’ll be happy.” Perfect lifestyle… “If I start my own business and make as much money as I did in my day job, then…
Practicing joy is a skill, a mindset, and a way of looking at the world that keeps me from getting lost in the hurt, fear, and ugliness that are so often shoved in my face in today’s media culture. It’s the anchor to not giving up.
I wasn’t able to respond, so I just sat there and let myself cry. I was embarrassed to be this emotional. I was relieved that he understood.
Who are you, sister? Tell us a little about yourself. I’m Gaia and I currently live in Copenhagen, Denmark with my two roomies. I’m an actor – I think I was born that way. I’ve always been an entertainer and a storyteller. Hell, my mom always says that when she would put baby Gaia down for a nap, I would spend a lot of time making noises, as if I was in a hurry to learn how to speak, so I could…
If your heart is set on making a living from your work, you owe it to yourself to discover what you’re most passionate about, and design your day-to-day experience to get as much of that as possible.
Oprah has said, “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” I believe practicing joy happens every single day by being grateful for what you have. When I express gratitude for a beautiful snowy day, a student who has had a huge success, or for little things like fuzzy blankets – I find myself in such a better mental headspace. I find myself in the spirit of joy. I also find joy by surrounding myself with those who life me higher. Practicing joy is an ever-evolving practice centered in celebrating what I already have.
Even though I’m not a “professional” dancer by vocation, and these days I don’t battle or train like before, I am a dancer and I always will be. Because dance is all about the journey.
Stratejoy Summer Camp is the kind of experience that you treasure forever. It will open you up to deeply joyful experiences, offer you the sense community that you’re probably craving, push your pre-conceived notions of what you’re capable of… And it will bring you closer to your most authentic self (promise). We could tell you all day long how much you can benefit from 5 days in the woods hitting refresh with women that you didn’t even know were your best…
I have no results, only fears and betrayals and a hope that dims like Tinkerbell’s light after she drinks poison. There are mysteries lurking in my body. My body is Pandora’s box.
This version of my dream has been 8 years in the making.
3 iterations of this website. Numerous failures and daily lessons learned. Tears and sweat and blood and gallons of wine. Vulnerable asks and scary times of scarcity. Learning and relearning to trust myself and my Tribe. 3 moves and 2 kids. Growing pains, internet judgment, imposter syndrome.
But you know what? I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Because I have also made lifelong soul sister friends. Changed lives. Stepped up into my role as CEO. Made a difference. Shared truths that are important to me. Listened hard. Connected incredible women. Shared the message that we are enough, that we are worthy of joy, that life on our own terms is important. Took my big wild and crazy dreams seriously.
Need some encouragement to start building your own version of a dream career/legacy/business/life?
Let this be it.
Who are you, sister? Tell us a little about yourself. I’m Meg Cassidy! I’m a sports fan, dog lover, 2014 Elevate sister, runner and writer, among other things. I live on my own in Connecticut in an adorable apartment that I’m still in the process of decorating. I’m so lucky to have a job I love, working as an associate producer at ESPN on SportsCenter. If the following things were professional sports, I would be an All-Star: sleeping until 10am,…
Have you ever looked at the woman next to you and thought, “Why is her life better than mine?” There’s a reason for that. And no, it’s not: “You aren’t working hard enough.” In fact, your time is coming. We are all experiencing a different stage of the same life cycle. We have been here before and we will be here again. Over the years I’ve worked with hundreds of women in transition, and over and over I watch them…
Slow the fuck down. You’re missing everything.
I am enough. I am enough. I am enough. That is two truths and a lie. I am a kick-ass mom. Recently I’ve learned that it is not only okay, but necessary, to admit that. My amazing daughter is my world. She is the coolest kid you could ever meet and I know that I had a hand in that. The right balance of discipline, role modeling, and giving her space to learn on her own is what I practice…
I am going to continue to live my peace, to facilitate change where I can and to know that I have done my part and so much more to improve the world for all who inhabit it.
It is impossible not to be changed when you leave Hendersonville. And once you experience 6am magic at Summer Camp, you may not want to.
My definition of success is leaving no stone unturned.
To be remarkable is to lead a life that is yours.
We’re kicking off our year of “Openhearted Connection” with the very first Tribe Interview! And it only seemed fitting that Molly pave the way…
I’m hopelessly devoted to serving this community and watching it gorgeously expand this year.
When I make my theme word for the year, I want it to be a loving, yet firm reminder of what is important to me. It’s easy for me to get caught up in the next bright shiny thing or in pursing egocentric goals because that’s what I “should” be doing, so I need my word to be my guide.
My theme word helps me stay centered on what I have declared is needed in my life, day after day, week after week, month after month.
For 2015, I was led by the word Essential.
There are 36 hours left to reserve your spot at Stratejoy Summer Camp. 36 hours left to take the leap, have the conversation, push your edge, use those vacation days, carve out the time + say an enthusiastic (if slightly nervous) YES.
The Camp Bus leaves at midnight PST this Friday!
We’ve been hard at work at putting together a magical + deep, playful + transformational, restorative + energizing retreat for the 71 women (so far!) joining us in August. As we plot and plan, we’ve been recounting times in our own lives when we went out on a limb to say *yes* to ourselves — when we valued connection and reflection, courage and presence.
Our stories reminded us of the Camp experience we’re creating for you — one that is not only going to be a freakin’ blast, but also, one that you’ll look back on and say, “Oh yes, that’s when everything shifted for me.”
It’s a common trait of women — of the care-taking role we’re conditioned to embrace — to put everyone’s needs ahead of your own. How can I help you? How can I support you? How can I take care of you?
Striving to be all things to all people is exhausting.
Why don’t you try asking yourself these very same questions for a change — How can I help myself? How can I support myself? How can I take care of myself?
The answer is commitment. Commitment to your own personal fulfillment and flourishing. Commitment with your whole heart. Commitment with your full sense of self.
You can commit in many forms — with time, energy or money, with your willingness to clash with society or the persona your partner/friends/family expect you to be, with your sacred rituals that remind you who you are and what you love.
The pursuit of worthwhile goals is one of the few things you can to that markedly improves your life satisfaction. And the development of powerful habits helps support that worthy pursuit.
When you feel like you’re just going through the motions — fearful of making any change, bored by the path you feel stuck on, or scared that you’ll never actually accomplish anything — declaring goals that are in alignment with your authentic self can awaken your spirit.
No woman is an island. Including you, sweetness.
We all crave belonging. We all have a deep desire for intimacy with our partners and our close friends. We want to feel connected to a community of like-minded people. We yearn for healthy relationships with our families.
Why? The journey becomes easier when you have found your people.
Welcome to the 6 Day Joy Challenge! Are you ready to refresh your sense of self? To remind yourself that joyful living is totally within your reach? In celebration of launching the new and improved Joy Equation Course, I’m challenging *YOU* to start prioritizing joy in your life. For the next 6 days, I’ll be rolling out a new step of The Joy Equation with 2 challenges: one writing prompt for your journal and one photography prompt to post online! And if you want me to…
If you stripped down to the very base of yourself – if we took away your job, your bank account, your schooling, your relationship status – who would you be?
Do you have any clue?
Answering this question can be incredibly hard. I get it, love.
You wear so many masks during your day and try so hard to please other people, that your own desires, preferences and unique strengths get overlooked. And pretty soon, you forget what those desires, preferences and unique strengths even are!
STEP ONE: DEVELOP FIERCE SELF-LOVE
Joyful living starts with loving yourself. And there’s no way around it, babe.
If you want to make big changes or reinvent your world, you’ve got to cultivate a strong sense of self-worth, develop inner resilience, and practice kindness towards yourself without an agenda of improvement.
That’s why this first step of The Joy Equation is a call to action to start at the beginning — the very act of falling in love with YOU.
You guys! I haven’t exactly been keeping this a secret, but I’ve spent the last month in my creative cave updating and expanding my favorite Course of all time — The Joy Equation. It’s almost ready to be revealed to the world…
In celebration, we’re going to have a little fun here on the blog with a Six Day Joy Challenge!
After all — It’s Your Life. Your Choices. Your Joy.
No need to sign up anywhere — just check back on Wednesday for the kick off day. For each step of The Joy Equation there will be an introspective journal prompt and a exploration challenge to photograph. Taking part is absolutely free and the perfect way to kickstart a joyful summer!
Whatever your Transition, thePROCESS of questioning, honoring, creating and committing is the same
I am so thrilled to welcome these incredible ladies to Summer Camp as winners of Work Scholarship positions!
Zingara, Jazz, Bird and Luna have some of my very favorite characteristics of courageous women — they are able to ask for what they want, celebrate their strength, and take scary action with grace. And they’ve given me permission to share their videos and pieces of their “Why I am Awesome” essay with ya’ll.
Please join me in congratulating them on the Stratejoy Facebook Wall or my Instagram!
And yes — there are still tickets available for Camp! Buy yours here — we’ll be closing registration soon…
I’ve always believed that you need to escape your life in order to reinvent it. Time and space away from your “reality” gives you the perspective you need to make big leaps in your life.
It’s easier to dream, it’s easier to be honest with what’s not working, and it’s easier to start down a new path when you’re not smack dab in the middle of the life you’re examining.
It’s the real reason I’m hosting Summer Camp for you.
There’s purpose to the play and reason for the rest. By retreating from your real life for 5 days, you’re creating space. You’ll have enough space away from your normal day-to-day so that you can examine it lovingly, but with an honest heart. You’ll have just enough space to dig into the places that feel out of alignment in your world and celebrate the pieces that are nourishing you.
You’ll have time and silence and SUPPORT to bring awareness to your dreams, your hopes, your excuses, your resources, and your motivation.
And you won’t be alone. We’ll be doing the work together.
Back in 2010, I went on a 7 day silent meditation retreat. I didn’t know anyone else going, nor anyone who had ever done it besides my Dad — but I just knew that I needed to be there. My soul was craving silence and reflection and a challenge outside of my comfort zone.
Stratejoy was still a fledgling little baby business back then and I didn’t have the money to to pay the full registration price for the retreat.
After reading the event page for the millionth time, I finally got the guts to apply for the Work Scholarship they were offering. You were still part of the retreat in every way, but you were supplementing the fee by working a few hours a day.
And I got it! I was assigned the incredibly important role of Soup Maker. I chopped and stirred and meditated over the soup pot every morning; ladled out soup every afternoon while making no eye contact; and scrubbed the pots and bowls and spoons every evening.
I’m still grateful that not only did I get to go on retreat, but I got the opportunity to share love and nurturing by helping to take care of my fellow meditators.
In that spirit — I’m excited to announce that we’re offering Work Scholarships for Summer Camp!
We’ve got 6 different opportunities to earn a work scholarship this year! I know our community is full of incredibly talented women and I’m hoping this opportunity allows a few more of you to come to Camp.
Okay, okay… The title might be a bit of an over sell. But if you missed either of the Community Calls we’ve had over the last week, I wanted to make sure you could easily access them.
Voila! They are here!
The other big piece of news is that — TODAY is the very last day to save $150 on your Summer Camp Ticket!
And that is the crux of Summer Camp — Meeting brand new people in a brand new place, and getting all up in their face, quickly and deeply.
It’s about learning about how convicted, fiery, passionate, loving, sensitive, and caring they are. How they’re terrible at navigating, or swimming, or three-legged races, but wonderful at encouraging you, asking you “How are you? No really, how are you?” and helping you find the words for that thing in your chest that you don’t quite have words for yet.
In a place where you have nothing to lose, because you may never see any of these people again. Where the cloaks come off, the walls come down, and the arms open up for hugs. Where you can love your heart out, cry your eyes raw, and dance your pants off, while everyone’s watching and nobody’s judging.
Summer Camp is truly being co-created with the women who are attending — there are no speakers, no gurus, no paid experts.
We are all teachers and we are all students.
We are all coming to give and to receive.
Each Camper will be bringing her own slice of magic, her own experience of being a woman in the world today, her own gifts to share, her own tenders spots of struggle.
And this is why women gather. To allow ourselves to be seen, to be loved, to be accepted. And to see, love and accept others.
Every day this past week, I’ve been sitting down to write welcome postcards to Campers who are going to be joining me in August. It’s sacred and special because I’m welcoming women to the inaugural year of one of my lifelong dreams — a Summer Camp for Grown Ups.
(Or as I’ve been calling it on Twitter — Camp for Grown Ass Ladies!)
As I write each name and address out, I spend a moment throwing out a wish that she’ll receive everything she’s craving from our 5 days together. I spend a moment hoping that we’ll all get to see her authentic self emerge over campfires and canoe races and intimate cabin conversations. And I spend a long moment wondering why this particular woman from Ohio or Alberta or Michigan is coming to Camp.
When I think back to some of the most transformative times in my life, they all involved two things — A Break from My Real Life + My People. From my 10 month backpacking trip around the world to my 4 month road trip honeymoon, from the World Domination Summit to my weekends with my Elevate Ladies — those pieces are ALWAYS there. And now? I’m creating this kind of experience for YOU with Stratejoy Summer Camp. (And me too! Who am I kidding?!)
I want to be joyful above all else, but also in union, of service, divine and wild.
I want my work to feel like play.
I want to create with fire in my belly, because I see a need in the world that I can ease. I want to be proud of my process, proud of my product, proud of my power.
I want my clients and my community to know that I love them in all their messiness because I do. I want being on retreat (or camp) with me to feel inspiring, raw, supportive and magical. I want to remember that I don’t take on others’ heaviness or fears or despair — I simply listen and love and offer my gifts.
Whatever way that you choose to honor your struggles and thereby make way for good to come is perfect because it’s all yours.
(Today’s post is part of an awesome blog tour headed up by my friend Andrea Owen of Your Kick-Ass Life. Starting February 1st, she’s hosting The Kick-Ass Courage Project: 7 Day Challenge. She’s challenging women to do two Very Important Things — start cultivating self kindness and self compassion (aka stop being such a bitch to yourself) and start practicing “being enough”. The Challenge is totally free and Andrea’s hope is that she can shift two very important aspects of your…
“This magic that I had experienced of being amongst my tribe was so intoxicating, that I didn’t want to let it go.” When I read that in Katie’s farewell post last week, I knew exactly what she meant…it’s the very reason why I’m here, writing to you today. While interacting with the Holiday Council Facebook group last month, I could feel the magic washing over me. It was one part waterfall, one part pixie dust: intense and rushing, yet sparkly…