Thursday, June 07, 2018

My Vision for Tomorrow + How I'm Making It a Reality

Last night, the Centre for Social Innovation hosted its annual fundraiser. The theme was Make Tomorrow | Create a Better World.The CSI community consists of over 250 social entrepreneurs working to make our dreams of a better world come to life.

Here is a photo of me with our Agents of Change cohort at the fundraiser.

The public lobby of the IAC Building has two tiled video walls that provide an interactive experience of imagery display. Capitalizing on this innovative feature, CSI asked all of its members to describe our vision for tomorrow and how our social innovation is making that vision a reality. Our impact number (some metric or outcome measure of our work) along with a headshot and collage of pictures were displayed on the video wall during the event.

This is a phone capture of my headshot on the video wall.

I thought you might like to read my responses to the questions for my Social Impact Innovator Profile. I answered from the perspective of Start Within Coaching, the new brand umbrella that encompasses my coaching, EFT work, and public events/workshops for women.

My Organization Mission:
Start Within Coaching seeks to disrupt the conversation around self-worth and self-esteem for women of color. Motivated by Sustainable Development Goal # 3.4, we promote women's mental health and wellbeing via live and virtual workshops, events, and coaching programs. 

My Vision of Tomorrow:
To reduce the percentage of black women who live with feelings of sadness, hopelessness, worthlessness, and/or that everything is an effort all of the time. For the last point, nearly twice as many non-Hispanic Black women felt this way in 2014, compared to their non-Hispanic White counterparts (9.9% vs. 5.8%). More than just the absence of a disorder, true mental health is a state of wellbeing in which a woman can realize her own potential, cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively, and make a contribution to the community. "Tomorrow," women of color will feel a sense of worthiness; they will know that their dreams, their health, and their overall lives matter. Start Within to Finish Strong!

My Social Impact:
In 2017, we hosted 10 New Moon Circles at CSI designed for women to create supportive relationships with other women, and to receive rejuvenation and support (via Guided Heart Meditations, Intention-Setting Rituals, and other wellness activities). Other public workshops and events focus on topics including Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT-Tapping), Self-Care Strategies, and Stress Management. Through private coaching, we map out personalized strategies for women to enhance their interpersonal communication, leadership style, and personal wellbeing.

When I Joined CSI:
October, 2016

Impact of CSI on Me / My Organization:
Since joining, I've become an Agents of Change Fellow, which has connected with more female founders who are committed to improving the status of women and girls globally. I've also been a founding member of the Women's Lab at CSI, an experiment in creating a safe haven space for female founders and their mission-driven organizations. I have hosted my New Moon Circles at CSI.

What is YOUR Vision for Tomorrow?
How are YOU Making it a Reality?

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Why You Should Wish Upon a Dandelion

You may be wondering why I've been talking so much about dandelions. When my designer and I created the Start Within branding, I was so excited to include a dandelion in the new logo. I feel that, symbolically, the dandelion is a great icon of renewal and growth -- that only can come from an inward focus ... like starting within!
The dandelion plant itself has amazing internal cleansing properties, as I discussed in my last post. Cleansing rituals, I believe, can help you to rejuvenate yourself. Cleansing is beneficial for each part of you --- your mind, body, and spirit.

Read on for more interesting points about dandelions and suggestions on how to do a Thought Cleanse for the Spring!

Why the Fascination With Dandelions?

There are many folklore superstitions that have been attached to dandelions over the years. In addition to granting wishes, many people believe that dandelion seeds will carry your thoughts and dreams to loved ones when you blow them into the air. It's been said that if you can blow all the seeds off a dandelion with a single breath, then the person you love will love you back. If seeds remain, then the object of your affection may have reservations about their feelings toward you.

Still others believe dandelions may help you tell the time or even predict the weather. For example, dandelions have been called the shepherd's clock; since their flowers tend to open shortly after first light and close again at dusk. Amateur meteorologists might use dandelions as an informal barometer. When dandelions have seeded, they will tend to extend into a full ball in good weather. If rain is on the way, however, they will tend to fold like an umbrella and remain tightly closed.

How many of these superstitions hold any truth? You can decide! 

Wish Upon a Dandelion to Cleanse Your Thoughts

The one thing that is for sure, scientifically, is that blowing a dandelion's seeds into the air will have an impact. Where those seeds fall on fertile soil, there likely will be new dandelions in the future!

When your attention is caught by dandelion seeds floating in the spring breeze, pause for a moment and take stock of your thoughts. Which thoughts are consuming your mind -- positive and hopeful or negative and fearful? Is it time for a thought cleanse?

By replacing negative beliefs with new, revitalizing thought patterns, you can gain the power to transform your behaviors, emotions, and attitudes. Even if you can't find a dandelion on which to blow, you can still do a thought cleanse.

With that in mind: close your eyes, envision the dandelion, get quiet, and start within. Ask yourself:

What NEW Thought Seeds Would You Like to Plant This Spring?  ... then blow

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Why I Love Dandelions ... And You Should Too

There's one weed that often drives adults crazy. Many kids love it, however. When it's in full bloom, its flowers look like the bright Sun. When it puffs out into a ball, it resembles the Moon. And when kids pick it and blow it to disperse its seeds, they fly into the air like the stars of the night sky. What am I talking about? The Dandelion, of course!

Etymological Meaning of the Dandelion Flower

The Dandelion name first developed in the 15th century. It was derived from the Medieval Latin phrase dens lionis, which refers to the jagged shape of the leaves by calling them a lion’s tooth. This transformed into dent-de-lion in French, and then became Dandelion in Middle English. We still use the same name today because it’s easy to remember and definitely still applies as a description of how the plant looks.

Description of the Dandelion Flower

Everyone knows what the dandelion looks like, it is such an easy flower to recognize. A dandelion can be characterized by its long hollow stem and the yellow flower that it has on top. Depending on the season that it is, it may have white fuzz on top of it that is the pollination and how the dandelion spreads.

Health Benefits of the Dandelion Flower

What's better than a plant that gives wishes when you puff its fluff? A plant that provides health benefits! Dandelion is an excellent food and medicine!

Medicinally the dandelion has some tried, tested, and true results. Ever since country folk have been stirring pots over fires, dandelion teas have been a brewing for the purpose of calming nerves, and promoting a sense of well-being. Dandelion roots infused in hot water and then strained make an excellent tonic, because the dandelion is a natural detoxifying body-cleanser and diuretic.

Every part of this common edible weed is tasty both raw and cooked, from the roots to the blossoms. Dandelion leaves can be harvested at any point in the growing season, and while the smaller leaves are considered to be less bitter and more palatable raw, the bigger leaves can be eaten as well, especially as an addition to a green salad. The flowers are sweet and crunchy, and can be eaten raw, or breaded and fried, or even used to make dandelion wine. The root of the dandelion can be dried and roasted and used as a coffee substitute, or added to any recipe that calls for root vegetables.

How can YOU use dandelion to cleanse your system and spring into better health?

Friday, March 02, 2018

Facebook LIVE: Clear Blocks to Love - Intimacy

On Tuesday, I hosted the third and final session of my Facebook LIVE series on LOVE, this time focusing on Intimacy.

How comfortable do you feel in silence? With being alone? With being both silent and alone? Answers to these questions may give you some clues about your connection to intimacy. Why? Because the quality of your connection with others stems from the quality of your connection with yourself.

Watch the final video replay to revisit the four step process on clearing your blocks to intimacy. Watch until the end to learn more about your second (or sacral) chakra -- the center of your sensuality and intimacy.

Share your comments below on the video series, and what other personal growth topics you would like to learn about in future Facebook LIVE series.

Take me up on my offer for a FREE Start Within Activation call to explore what came up for you as you watched this series -- What would you like to have more of in your life?

Friday, February 23, 2018

Facebook LIVE: Clear Blocks to Love - Forgiveness

On Tuesday, I hosted the second of my 3-part Facebook LIVE series on LOVE this time, focusing on Forgiveness.

So often, when we think of forgiveness, we think about how to forgive another person. Yet, even in situations when we feel we have been wronged or mistreated, we can feel guilty for the "shoulds" -- I should have done ... or I shouldn't have said ...

Watch the replay until the end to learn the Ho'oponopono process for forgiveness. The word itself means to make right. With the lens focused inward, what do you need to make right with yourself?

Tune in next Tuesday, Feb. 27 at 1:43 pm ET for my last session on Intimacy and LOVE. On the Facebook Event Page, select "Going" so that you will get an update when I go LIVE!

Friday, February 16, 2018

Facebook LIVE: Clear Blocks to Love - Self Worth

On Tuesday, I hosted the first of my 3-part Facebook LIVE series on LOVE this time, focusing on Self-Worth.

I believe that self-worth is the foundation of all love. It helps you to maintain personal boundaries and to fully own your brilliance. When you start within to clear your love blocks, you will love more deeply (yourself and others). You will begin to see shifts in your personal and professional relationships.

Watch the replay to hear about four tips to clear any limiting beliefs about your personal value. Be sure to watch until the end for a powerful, inspirational song to boost your worthiness!

Then, tune in next Tuesday, Feb. 20 at 1:43 pm ET for my next session on Forgiveness. On the Facebook Event Page, select "Going" so that you will get an update when I go LIVE!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Are You a Truthsayer?

The dialogue around Oprah's Golden Globes acceptance speech has inspired AND challenged me. I've noticed that the more personal growth work that I do -- particularly around my sacral chakra -- the more present I've become to my anger and dissatisfaction as a black woman witnessing our current state of affairs.What's been challenging about this personal growth has been that I haven't always been clear about how (or when) to express my feelings or observations of unconscious bias, inequity, etc. -- in my professional (and personal) conversations.

Sometimes, I have felt constrained by my role as a coach who holds space for others to heal. What will they think of me if I express ...? And, when I have spoken my truth, and it's not been fully heard or received, I also have felt bereft of my full expression. Today, like Oprah said, "Time's Up!" No longer will I hush my voice.

My A-HA! moment came early this morning -- that's when I have a lot of these epiphany moments -- I'm probably not the only Truthsayer who has struggled with this! To my fellow Truthsayers I say, I have your back! AND, it would be my honor to share with you my Start Within coaching techniques and other tools to help support you in speaking your truth, as well as to manage your internal energy / chakras -- so you can stay whole and healthy on your soul journey.

This year, more than ever before, I feel called to support fellow Truthsayers in amplifying their mindful communication and leadership, as we all are on a mission to be fully heard, witnessed and recognized. And, it's not purely for personal gain (at least not for me). I believe that our stories hold power -- power for change, power for healing, power for truth.

Are YOU Ready to Speak Your Truth?