11 Steps to Blaze your own Bodacious Path in 2017

“Try to discover
The road to success
And you’ll seek but never find,
But blaze your own path
And the road to success
Will trail right behind.”
— Robert Brault

2017 marks the year of the Fire Phoenix. In some translations it's the Rooster year, but I prefer this much juicier symbolism that brings with it the promise of rebirth and transformation, rising from the ashes.

The Year of the Phoenix in particular is associated with the element of fire, which ignites our creative embers and our stirrings for passion and freedom. It encourages us to emerge and share our deep gifts to meet the world’s deep needs. It reminds us to stay grounded in the heart and make our choices based on the whole of humanity. It stokes us to ACTION, especially in regards to unleashing our WILD in service to the world.

Phoenix is a shameless and brave visionary and its fire brings strength, passion, bravery and leadership -- the four qualities that we all need to embody now more than ever.

The Phoenix is also urging us to RISE & SOAR.

It's time on the individual and global scale. We're being called to break free of what no longer serves us, to step into our soul's purpose and to fully show up in service to why we're here at this most crucial time in human history. And to Sparkle SHAMELESSLY, of course!

I'm here to help you do just that!

The key is to maintain balance as you charge forward, with a keen sense of awareness for what lies ahead and the direction in which you’re going … as well as taking these 11 necessary steps to blaze your own bodacious path in 2017 (tweet it):

1. Get clear for the New Year

We are starved for depth, meaning and purpose in our consumer-obsessed culture. We have a hard time discerning what would truly bring us happiness with all the marketing and advertising that is literally designed to trick us. Because of this, I like to begin the New Year by getting clear about what I most want to accomplish this year and that can propel me towards a life I would LOVE to be living.

I focus in on how I want to feel (with the help of Danielle Laporte's Desire Map), I ponder what adventures I want to take, I consider what personal development opportunities I want to delight in, and I sit with how I want to deeply connect with those that I hold nearest and dearest. I ask, "what can I give?", focusing in on how I can LOVE more and deliver greater value and service to the world, instead of asking "what can I get?"

The Bottom line: Discover what is of deepest importance to you. (HINT: you will know, for it is what brings you fully alive) Don’t allow yourself to be blind to the things that truly matter to you.(tweet it) A raise at your 80 hr/week job may bring you alive momentarily, but will that feeling last in the long run? Getting another degree and another title to add to your name will exhilarate you in the beginning, but is it truly going to bring you a lasting sense of aliveness? Going to Bali might look spectacular on your social media feed, but is it going to nourish you at the deepest level of your being?

There are two things that we have to examine closely here when deciding. I refer to them as the:

  1. Short-term ego goals: goals that lead to a momentary pleasure or ego high, but don’t last in the long run

  2. Long-term Aliveness goals: goals that will help you to achieve an overall feeling of aliveness in the long run, even if it means giving up a temporary pleasure

Even if you’ve already been throwing some ideas around, whittle your list down to 3 main goals (or what I like to call ALIVENESS ACCELERATORS) to move towards. THREE. That’s it. And make sure that they fall into category #2.: long term aliveness goals. Anything more & you’ll sabotage yourself before you’ve begun.

Once you have your list, write it out on a big sheet of paper and put it up on the wall where you can see it every day (or write it on your bathroom mirror). Make it fun, decorative, juicy, or whatever it takes for you to actually enjoy looking at it daily. I do the same with my Core Desired Feelings from the Desire Map. which you can see to the right ------>

Check in around your 3 ALIVENESS ACCELERATORS at least once a week and see what ACTIONS you can take in the next 7 days to move closer to your goals. Be sure to pack compassion with you for the journey and set small, measurable daily steps (& reward yourself along the way!).

2. Release what no longer serves you

Release rituals have been one of the most powerful ways I have been able to bring healing and transformation into my life over the last 7 years. All you have to do is decide what is no longer serving you and what you are going to commit to let go of from 2016. Write it all down on a piece of paper (or several if you need!) and then consciously release it either through tearing it up into little pieces and throwing it in the toilet or burning it (safely). As you are destroying the old beliefs, ways of being, and the things that are no longer serving you, loudly proclaim “BE GONE!” Repeat any time you are feeling stuck or blocked.

3. Unleash your unique #SOULSPARKLE

Since it's the Year of the Fire Phoenix, we have the ability to tap into the powerful energies around us and allow them to carry us. We merely need to claim that fire power that is ours! Think of it as the unique #SOULSPARKLE that only you can bring and shine in the world, burning BRIGHT. I created a FREE 13 day course to help you begin the journey here: the #SOULSPARKLE Starter Kit

You can also spend time each day generating power from within, focusing on your solar plexus near your belly button. Imagine a fiery yellow sun generating from that point within you like an internal dawn approaching. Imagine it slowly getting bigger and bigger till it entirely consumes you, energizing and warming your entire body. Draw on this internal sun whenever you need energy or personal power. It’s an endless reserve within us all. This exercise is even more powerful if you do it simultaneously with the sun rising in the morning.

4. Choose your theme for the year

As some of you know, I choose an annual theme for the year, especially since choosing a specific focus and intention goes a long way in the sphere of personal development. 2016 asked me to Do What Matters, which was a very humbling process that allowed me to step more fully into sharing my gifts with the world and surrendering to the path that is meant for me instead of being attached to old ways of being.

In keeping with the Year of the Fire Phoenix, my theme for 2017 is ARISE (tweet it). Some others of mine in the past have been: Self Care or Go NowhereStep into the Light .

Here are some ideas to help you choose your own theme.

  • Go through your old journals looking for words & phrases that repeat numerous times

  • Get honest with yourself about where you’re STUCK in your life and choose a theme to help you release from this pattern.

  • Name something you’d like to aspire towards this year

  • Consider a quality you’d like to bring into your life this year

  • Need more guidance? Consider booking a Deep Dive Discovery session with me for the New Year to get clear.

6. Nourish Yourself Deeply

To avoid the tumult of failed resolutions…consider making a commitment to deeply nourish yourself this year instead (i.e. I commit to eating nourishing foods that will best serve my body and work in the world. OR I commit to being generous every week, both with myself and with the people in my immediate circles – as well as strangers). Move towards what FEELS GOOD deep in your bones, what satiates you fully and wholly. Don't settle for scraps: commit to choose the feast. To enhance the experience, you can even create a commitment contract with yourself that you sign and date (preferably with a witness) to stay on course with your path to nourishment. You can refer back to it often to help keep you aligned.

7. Make Growing & Giving a Priority

Growing and giving are two of the main areas in life that bring us the greatest fulfillment and joy. If we’re not growing, we wither and die like anything else in nature. And if we’re not giving, we become hardened and bitter, trapped in the lonely world of separation, self-absorption and ego. So consider making growing and giving priorities this year. Infuse this intention into everything you do. Ask how can I grow? and how can I give? in each situation and begin to look at your days as sacred containers to express your greatness, instead of just another day passing. (Tweet it) Bring ritual and reverence to each task you take on, and make it matter so that you can activate the aliveness that comes from making a contribution.

8. Move towards Authenticity

“Finding the authentic has become the foremost spiritual quest of our time.” – Andrew Potter

The only way to truly be bodacious on your own path is to be authentically and boldly YOU (tweet it). To embody your own delicious spark of uniqueness – the potion that can only be you, the deep gifts only you can give, that unlikely superpower, the living legend within you. And Sparkle SHAMELESSLY™!

Yet we have a fundamental conflict: we all yearn to be seen and recognized for the truth of who we are, yet we’re simultaneously afraid of being judged and rejected. And allowing ourselves to be vulnerable is the only solution. As – Julien Smith cleverly put it, “Vulnerable is the new black.”

How about releasing your feelings of fear and just stepping into the fullness of who you are? How about NOT attempting to compare yourself to others in this world (especially models in magazines, Hollywood actresses, or people in ad campaigns for enhancement products) but instead comparing yourself to your Fabulous Future Self? Then congratulating yourself for the progress you’ve made so far in getting there?

Choose to live life in plain sight this year, even if it means being vulnerable, and move towards authenticity at every turn. Allow yourself to be gigantic & whole, even when it hurts. You are an unlimited being, and it’s only our thoughts and actions that bring on limitation. You weren’t meant to be like anyone else but YOU, and you alone. So rock your realness & SPARKLE! (tweet it)

9. Tap into the inner wisdom of your heart

As Carl Jung said, Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”

To stay in balance while blazing your own bodacious path, it’s essential to strengthen your relationship with yourself & to deepen your ability to listen to your inner depths & the wisdom of your heart. It involves clearing away the noise of daily life and your own mind so you can hear your true self. You must take the time to be silent each day and listen to hear the reverberations of the truth, bypassing any ego nonsense.  If it’s only in your head/mind you can rest assured it isn’t your truth, for truth echoes only in the chambers of the heart. (tweet it)  This is a process of befriending your heart and tapping into it to receive the wisdom that has always been yours.  These are some of the most powerful and exacting methods there are for decision making, growth, and healthy change. And YOU get to steer the controls!

Begin to literally ask for Guidance – “What would you have me do, where would you have me go and what would you have me say, and to whom?” – this is a favorite question that I like to ask to receive guidance, from A Course in Miracles.  It can also be as simple as concentrating on a specific situation in your life and asking “Is there anything that I need to know to help this situation to resolve for the highest good of all involved?” You may also speak directly to your Fabulous Future Self, imagining them sitting directly in front of you shining limitless love and acceptance as you ask for guidance.

10. JUST LOVE

LOVE moves everyone. LOVE is the great motivator. LOVE RULES! (tweet it)

But really…our world needs more love. Whenever you can give love, come from a place of love, share love, inspire love, shout love from the rooftops, & just be the presence of love itself. Join the Revolution of LOVE & LIGHT that is upon us.

11. Gather in Beloved Community for healing, strength & support

In these maddening times, we need to lean into Beloved community and each other to help us RISE & SOAR. We're not made to do this alone. We need each other to live into our full (r)evolutionary potential!

I have lots of upcoming opportunities for us to gather both in spiritual community and in sisterhood, with our New Year's MENLA Retreat in upstate New York, the Birthing a Brave New World 3 part ritualistic series, and the #SOULSPARKLE Sanctuary. Join us!

12. Take action starting NOW (Bonus Step!)

in the comments below, put yourself on the hook with what action you'd like to start taking right NOW from the list above and we can help hold you accountable.

It is my sincere hope that these tools and practices will be of great use to you in 2017 and beyond. Regardless, may you have a tremendous start to the New Year blazing your own bodacious trail! I can't wait to see you RISE & SOAR!