courage

Mary Magdalene & The Courage to Be Seen

 
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Have your palms ever broke a sweat at the thought of being the center of attention? Have you ever felt timid to share your voice? Or afraid of what would happen if you really let your true self be seen?

For much of my life I experienced intense anxiety around being seen, especially when it came to public speaking. It felt like my body would shut down in these situations, my chest would constrict and I would have trouble breathing, so as any young girl probably would, I stopped putting myself in the situations where I would have to speak or share in public.

But when I think back on this fear that I carried through high school and college, it always felt so much deeper than just the normal nerves of public speaking or being the center of attention. It was a deep visceral feeling that something terrible would happen if I really let myself step up to share in the way I was feeling called. 

For the last seven years of my life have been focused on understanding and releasing this deep rooted fear. I began with beginning to teach yoga back in 2010 and then took bigger steps by joining toastmasters to give speeches in 2014.  But even though I did well and even excelled in these areas, underneath I still felt a palpable fear of “I might just die if I do this."

Now, I want to write about this today because in the past few months I have noticed something big shifting for myself and others. I have continued to take steps to face my fear, showing up to interviews to talk about my book, teaching more yoga and leading events where I share my story, but it has been completely different. That visceral feeling of “something terrible is going to happen to me if I do this” hasn't been there.

At first I told myself, "Well it's because I've been spending years practicing this..." but to be totally honest, I think the real reason this deep rooted fear is lifting is because of Mary Magdalene.

I first began to learn about the truth of Mary’s life after meeting Kaia Ra at one of her book readings for The Sophia Code last year.

All I knew about Mary Magdalene growing up was that she was close to Jesus during his life, and that she was often portrayed by the Catholic church as a prostitute. I remember an image I saw of her when I was a child - she was depicted as dirty and haggard, kneeling next to Jesus to wash his feet.

But the truth is, Mary Magdalene was a Priestess. She had a very high role of anointing, and that image of touching Jesus’ feet was actually a moment where she was using sacred oils to anoint him in a highly revered act.

As I have dove into books and channeled teachings about Mary Magdalene, I have learned she was Jesus’ wife and she was a complete equal to him. She would teach beside Jesus during her lifetime. Her image was tainted after her death because the church took out many stories from the Bible that portrayed the divine feminine as a powerful force. For centuries, the feminine was suppressed. 

When Jesus was crucified, there was a prophecy that there would be 2000 years of darkness, and after that time, the divine feminine would rise to restore her place again alongside the divine masculine.

This is the time we are in right now. I've read about many prophecies that after 2012 it would be the beginning of a new golden age. 

Right now, a new paradigm is being midwifed by Mary Magdalene and many other ascended masters to restore the sacred feminine in our collective consciousness. And what I have been noticing in this incredible time is: it is safe for women to be powerful and share their voices.

To affirm this belief, last year our Pope declared Mary Magdalene as “the apostle of the apostles.” She has now finally been recognized by the Catholic Church as one of the highest teachers of her time, right alongside Jesus Christ. 

The energy of Mary Magdalene began coming to me more and more in conversations, books, in imagery, and in my meditations. Every time I thought of her, I felt a sense of peace and ease.

Then I attended a women’s circle to learn more about Mary Magdalene. The leader of the circle told us that Mary Magdalene carried an ancient wound during her lifetime: the fear of being stoned for being visible and sharing her voice. She said this deep rooted fear was passed down through many centuries, and that many women still feel the weight of that wound today. 

Every hair on my body raised when she said this because finally I had an answer to explain my fear - I just knew I was connected to this ancient wound. I imagined myself as a High Priestess in a past life, in the lineage of Isis and Mary Magdalene, and I just knew in my bones that I had been carrying this wound that it just was not safe to be seen.  

I then realized that in stepping up to be seen and share my voice now, I am healing the lineage of women who for centuries carried this same wound.

Mary Magdalene has been coming to many, many men and women in the dawn of this new age to help us birth this new paradigm.  She is letting us know it is safe now. The feminine is safe now. It is safe to share our voice. It is safe to be a powerful feminine leader. 

So what is being asked of us now in this time? We are being asked to restore the feminine within ourselves. To learn how to receive, to rest, and to simply be. We are learning to honor our bodies, our emotions and our sexuality as sacred. We are relearning the ways of the feminine, and by restoring these qualities within ourselves, we are doing our part on behalf of a much greater awakening.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and to reach the bottom of this email. If you are here reading this, I imagine you may have a connection to Mary Magdalene as well, whether you know it consciously or not. I want you to know that you are safe, and she is here for you, guiding us from the higher realms.

Do you feel the shifting in this time? Do you feel called to restore the balance of our culture by honoring the sacred feminine within?

I will be sharing more teachings of Mary Magdalene as part of my upcoming program, The Sovereign Circle. There are still spaces left to join, and we begin with our first live virtual circle with the next full moon on October 4th. Reply to this email if you'd like more details, and I'll send you the program guide.

With love,
Meredith

 

The Cover of My Book (+ Tips on Birthing Your Big Dream)

REAL TALK: it's taken me six years to publish my first book.

I remember the exact spot I was in India on Mount Arunachala, the holy mountain of stillness and light, in spring 2011 right after my friend told me he thought I would write a book one day.

I sat pondering, "What would I write a book about? What would I have to say?"

At first I brushed off the idea, feeling like it would all just be too hard, but soon I imagined opening pages of the book, and saw each chapter title as a mantra, where I shared stories from my travels in India.

I imagined the words speaking of love and breakups, and the journey I set out on to find love within rather than outside of myself.

I imagined the book would speak of the sages and saints I met on my path and would bring light to the spiritual teachings that have been life-changing for me.

Then I thought, "That's not such a bad idea! Maybe I should write a book..."

Fast forward six years and I am in the final three months before my book, Just Be: A Search for Self-Love in India is released to the world.

Many of you have been following me on this journey from the Kickstarter campaign to the title change (read more about that here), to the new cover design and beyond.

But I know for many of you, this may be the first time hearing about this project.

So today I wanted to share with you the final cover design.

It will be a complete 9-month journey from when I began work with my publisher last December to when my book is released at the end of August.

And in many ways it has felt like birthing a child.

I've had to do deep spiritual work in moving through fears and doubts, as well as releasing expectations and attachments to the final outcome.

There were many, many times I almost gave up. But somehow, I kept going.

I can imagine that if you have a big dream you have been wanting to birth into the world, you have been facing some of these doubts and challenges that naturally come up along the way.

I invite you to reconnect to your intention in birthing that dream - what do you hope to gain from it?

Throughout the whole book-birthing process I reminded myself of 3 simple intentions:

  • I desire to learn about how to write and publish a book

  • I long to honor this divinely guided idea (that felt like it chose me and asked me to birth it)

  • I hope to help even just 1 person through the stories and teachings that are shared in it

When I reconnected to these intentions again and again, it always felt so much easier to take the next step.

So, what dream are you holding in your heart that you are ready to birth into the world? If you feel called to share with us, let us know in the comments below.

And you know what? It's totally OKAY if it takes YEARS longer than you ever thought it would to birth your dream...

I am cheering you on from the sidelines because from my experience, I can tell you it feels pretty awesome when you finally get there. 

With love, 
Meredith

P.S. And I couldn't have done it without an amazing video and kickstarter strategy from StartMotionMEDIA.

017 | Amma, Service & Finding My Voice: A Book Reading with Meredith Rom

 

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Last night I held my first book reading in Berkeley, CA at the community meditation house I used to live in.

The living room was packed, and at one point people were even spilling out into the hallway!  

What happened there, was pure magic.

I sang with the harmonium, told stories, answered questions from the audience and shared the first in-person reading from Synchronicity. 

It's amazing to think that only three years ago I never would have imagined my life would look like this.  Singing and telling stories in front of a group?  Me?  I don't know if I would have believed you!  

However, what I've learned about my fear over the years is that confidence comes from actually going out and DOING the things that scare us.  

Confidence comes from taking action.


It's only when we are in the non-action - the waiting and procrastinating that our minds run wild telling us stories that aren't even real.

Every time I've done something that scares me, it always feels like a crazy leap of faith, but every time I have made the jump, I have been met with so much love, synchronicity and magic. 

Today I have a new Synchronicity book reading to share with you!  It's all about Amma, service and finding my voice as a teacher.

In this episode you'll learn about:

  • Teachings of Amma, the hugging saint and my experiences at her ashram 
  • What it was like to teach English to hundreds of children at an orphanage in India
  • My experience of teaching my first yoga class and discovering my authentic voice as a teacher

I'm curious what fear you have been hiding from?  What small step could you take to walk towards it?  Let me know in the comments below.

There are just 10 days left in the Kickstarter campaign! I am so grateful to everyone who has gathered together in support of this project. Really, I had no idea my heart could expand with this much love.

Warmly,
Meredith

 

24 Hours of **Magic**

Click the image to watch the video!

Click the image to watch the video!

Over the last month I've ridden the waves of fear and trust as I prepared to start the publishing process to share my book with the world.

...And since launching a campaign yesterday, I am humbled and AMAZED by the outpouring of love and support this project has received...

Check out the latest stats to see how far we've come in only 24 hours.

This book was written to help you take bigger leaps to stand up and share your gifts with the world...

If there's anything I've learned in the last day, it's that we're all in this together.  
You can now watch the project video and be one of the first to join the community ready to experience my new book, Synchroncity.

Thank you to all of you who have helped me cross this threshold.

With immense love & gratitude, 
Meredith

P.S. Your help makes all the difference!
Please like, comment, and share this post on facebook to continue spreading the word.  In your post please include the project short link http://kck.st/2dTEZpS so people know where to go to view the project!

Yoga, Kirtan & Book Readings!

11/4 ~ Yin Yoga, Tea, Book Reading & Celebration! in honor of finishing my book, 'Synchronicity' 6:30 pm at The dhyana Center

10/27
Kirtan! 6:30 pm at Alive Yoga in Sebastopol

10/24 ~ 
Kirtan & Book Reading at the Dhamma Pad 8 pm in Berkeley, CA


Please contact me if you'd like to invite me for a book reading, kirtan or yoga event during the campaign :)

What an Elephant Taught me About my Fear

 

In the weeks before I left for my trip to India I met a man in San Francisco named Josh. 

We immediately connected over our passion for music, tea, yoga, and astrology.  We spent long mornings chatting together in the three days I had in the city, and in the weeks that followed, we continued our conversation through letters and emails. 

I knew I could have had a promising romance in the States if I stayed, but I chose to follow my dreams, bought my ticket to India and left for Amma’s ashram in Kerala.

To my surprise, two weeks after my arrival, I found a message waiting from Josh in my inbox:

“I bought a flight to visit you!!  I’ll be arriving in just a few weeks.”

I was flattered, but also shocked — “You’re traveling halfway around the world to see me??” 

I had enjoyed our romantic emails in the weeks before I left, but I knew in my heart I was making the trip to India for myself and no one else.  I had so much to discover there and part of me knew I needed to do it on my own.

But then I thought of leaving the safety of the ashram premises (where I had been safely meditating). I hadn’t been outside of the ashram yet and I had no idea how I would feel navigating the trains and buses around the country by myself.  “Wouldn’t it be nice to have this man with you for a sense of security?”

I knew it was safer, more secure, and I was scared of the unknown. 

So I replied, “I’m excited you’re coming!”  Over the days that followed we talked about riding an elephant into the sunset together and watching the full moon rise over the beach on his birthday...

A week before Josh arrived, I felt a strong desire to go out exploring on my own.  I took a train to a nearby beach town and every step of the way surprised myself at how at home I felt making all the decisions by myself.

On the beach a huge elephant walked by on a nearby path.  I went closer to admire it when a man leading it asked, “Do you want to go for a ride on Ganesha?”

“A ride? Me, by myself? Up there?” I thought. I remembered my dreams of riding an elephant with Josh tightly holding my hand as we watched the sunset.

Then for a moment I imagined myself up there on the elephant all by myself, with the breeze on my face, looking down at the world around me. It felt liberating. 

Josh probably wouldn’t mind if I did it on my own, I thought. “Yes, please!” 

I ran closer and waited while one of the Indian men moved his hand over the side of Ganesha’s face and whispered a few words in his ear. He patted Ganesha’s front leg and the elephant bent down. The Indian man advised me to step on his hoof so he could hoist me up. 

I followed his directions and found myself belly down on top of the elephant trying to swing my leg over to the other side. The little hairs on his enormous body brushed against my face.

When I successfully swung my leg to the other side, I sat up slowly, finding my balance. The Indian men were laughing and clapping as I looked around, a little shocked by the new perspective.

The ground was a good ten feet away. I ran my hands over his grey, wrinkly skin. As I found my composure, the shakiness I felt at first began to dissipate.

I sat with poise and confidence like an Indian queen greeting the villagers of her kingdom. 

Then I thought, "I don’t actually need Josh to be here with me to feel safe." I realized a big part of the reason I had initially been so happy to have Josh come visit me was because I had been afraid of being on my own.

The prospect of having a man with me while I traveled to a new country felt safer. But now that I had found my own way from the ashram to this town, I felt fine.

I felt more than fine—I felt confident in myself.

I didn’t need Josh to be there with me to feel safe. I didn’t need him there to ride the elephant, and I didn’t necessarily need him there to travel with me around India.

I still felt excited to see him, but an old, limiting belief had been lifted. I no longer felt a need to depend on a man outside of myself. 

The more steps the elephant took, the more I realized I wasn’t carrying any fear at all, just excitement.

I felt awake, present, and invincible.

I realized that doing the things that scared me brought me fully into the present moment. Once I was doing it, there didn’t seem to be any more fear.

Even more than that, I realized in doing the things that scared me, I walked away with more confidence. I reminded myself, The only way to get rid of my fears, is to simply go out and do what I'm afraid of. 

I had spent so much of my life in fear. I was afraid to speak up in class, afraid to travel on my own, I was even afraid of driving on highways. I always wondered, "How do I gain more confidence?"

I was so busy avoiding the things that scared me that I had never learned the pathway to more confidence was simply doing what scared me.

When I did that, the fear became more familiar, and less scary. Each fear I faced gave me more confidence to face another. 

Deep within myself, I knew if I were to travel on my own for the rest of my time in India, I’d be okay. I needed to ride the elephant by myself to discover that. 

I lowered down closer to the elephant’s ear and whispered, “Thank you Ganesha for clearing this path for me. Thank you for this new wisdom.” 

To find out what happened next you’ll have to keep reading in my book.  Stay tuned to find out how you can receive an early copy...

In the meantime, I’m curious, what fears or limiting beliefs have you been holding?  And what action could you take to live more fully beyond your fears? I'd love to hear in the comments below.

With love,
Meredith

 

Why I Cut Off My Hair When I was 22

 

When I was 22 years old I cut off most of my hair.  

It was in a salon, just hours before my flight to India.  I didn't know how long I would be gone or when I would be coming back. 

I remember staring at my long, golden locks in the mirror thinking about how much I had identified myself with my hair.  Men often complimented me on it.  It made me feel beautiful. 

But it was also a place where I would hide.  I remember when my skin broke out in cystic acne and all the products and creams I used stopped working all together.  To feel comfortable going outside, I put on layers of makeup and let my hair cover most of my face.

I remember hiding behind my hair in class, hoping the teacher wouldn't call on me, terrified that my voice would shake if I was asked to speak...

But in the moments before boarding my plane to India, I knew I was done with hiding.  

I stood looking in the mirror and thought, "What if I cut it all off?"

It was like standing on the edge of a cliff. I felt tingles from my toes run up my shins. 

It took courage to take the leap I was about to take, to travel half-way around the world without an end date or a plan...

I would be entering a place where no one knew me.  I realized, I could be anyone I wanted to be.  

And I was ready to stop hiding. 

So I walked into the closest salon and told her to cut my hair to a boy-short length.

I watched as the golden locks hit the floor, wondering how men would look at me now, and how I would feel about myself when I looked in the mirror.  I wondered if I had made a mistake.

But then I realized how brave I was in making a conscious choice to leave my insecurities about my appearance behind. 

"I am doing this for myself and no one else.  I am doing this to see my own inner radiance," I told myself. 

I took these before and after pictures in the salon mirror...

Before and after pics of my haircut in the salon bathroom

Before and after pics of my haircut in the salon bathroom

Walking out, I ran my fingers through my new short cut, tied a scarf around my head and hours later, boarded my flight into the unknown.

More photos from my first week in India at Amma's ashram in Kerala, 2011:

Photos of me during my first week in Kerala, India

Photos of me during my first week in Kerala, India

As self-conscious as I was in my first weeks with short hair, it was also incredibly liberating.  It helped me drop the identity of the person I had been up to that point, and helped me stop trying to put on an appearance for the outside world. 

It helped me reconnect to a love within myself and for myself, that had nothing to do with my appearance.

I share this with you today to remind you of your own inner radiance. 

Where have you been relying too much on your outer appearance?

I don't think we all need to go as extreme as cutting off all our hair - but what if you chose not to wear makeup for a day? Or wore your hair pulled back, away from your face? 

A simple act like that is for you and no one else.  May it help you remember that at your core and your essence, you are pure radiance. 

With love, 
Meredith

P.S. This story is also a scene from my upcoming book about my travels in India.  Stay tuned for more stories like this coming out this month...<3

 

"Do I love this?" (Why I'm giving away half the clothes in my closet)

 

I woke up this morning, with a strong urge to give away half of the clothes in my closet.

Yesterday, my friend came back from a transformative festival and declared, "From now on, I am only going to wear clothing that is made of organic, natural fibers in the colors of white, red or gold." 

She had come home wearing a beautiful white cotton dress that made her look like a priestess.  She told me, "I spent $108 on this dress, and it may be all I need."

I have watched over the past month as this friend moved, gave away half of her belongings and simplified her life.  

Being around her has been so refreshing, and also inspired me to look at the areas of my life (and closet) that have felt stagnant.

I recently finished reading Greg McKeown's NY Times best-selling book, Essentialism. 

In it, he challenges the reader to go into their closet and instead of asking, "Is there a chance I will wear this someday in the future?" to ask, "Do I love this?" If the answer is no, then you know it is a candidate for elimination.  

I realized I have been craving this kind of clarity in my life.  I was yearning to declare, "This is what I want," fully own it, and decide the rest is nonessential.

This summer I have been saying no to opportunities.  I've said no to interviews, subbing yoga classes, new teaching opportunities, and even new clients.  I realize I needed to do this to clear the space in my mind and my schedule to just be.  

Through that space I'm seeing more clearly what I want to say yes to.  
I now feel a fresh inspiration for my podcast interviews, for crafting and refining my book (the stories of India I so long to share,) and for creating space this Fall to work with women one-on-one.  

I realized at least for now, everything else could fall away.

When we eliminate, we create space for our highest possible contribution to shine through. 


So today, as I am going through my closet, I invite you to ask, "What is cluttering up my life?"

Maybe it is material clutter, or maybe it is one-too-many projects you have said yes to...

I'm curious what you can eliminate or say no to, in order to make greater space for your yes...

I'd love to hear what it is in the comments below.

With love, 
Meredith

 

My #1 Cure For When I'm Feeling Depressed

 
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A couple weeks ago I was sitting on the beach in Costa Rica and everything on the outside was perfect: the sun was shining, the sky was blue, I was surrounded by palm trees and I knew I had worked hard to take myself on a vacation.  

Then out of no where I started feeling sad.  

"What's wrong?" I wondered.

I turned to my meditation practice, where I was able to watch my sensations and breath without judgement or need to change anything.  I felt much better, afterwards but I could tell, something was still off.

The next day I arrived at the yoga retreat I had traveled all the way to Costa Rica to attend.  As soon as I arrived, my spirits began to lift as I met a beautiful new group of people.  But that evening, I could feel a little bit of sadness still with me.  I decided to let it be.

Then a few days into the retreat I had this super magical moment.  Our retreat leader, Sianna, invited me to play a song on the harmonium.  I walked up to the front of the room and calmly accepted the invitation.  I sang a chant I had been working on at home, and everyone sang with me.  

I walked back to my seat feeling a rush of joy and peace.

I realized that even more than being surrounded by community, eating delicious food and taking care of my body, my soul was yearning to share my gifts.  


It was when I had an opportunity to give back, to do something I loved and also something that was a little scary, that everything changed.  I spent the rest of the week on cloud nine because I had a moment where my soul had been seen.

"Women have a soul need to express themselves."  
~Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes

I've always found retreats to be a safe and healing space to practice being in my voice and sharing my gifts, and that's why I created opportunities just like this in the Rising Women Leaders Bali Retreat.

I knew it was important to create a space for community and friendships to form, to have delicious food, and daily yoga, but I also wanted to create opportunities for women to inquire about and discover their innate gifts.

The theme of the week in our Bali Retreat is self-expression:  Expression through song, dance, writing, yoga and ritual.  

Workshops include: a cacao ceremony, how to reframe limiting beliefs, a new moon manifestation ritual, designing your dream life, opening the voice and self-expression through dance (to name a few!).

Applications are only open for 5 more days...until this Friday, April 1st.

If you've been considering joining us, I encourage you to take the leap and apply!

Now if you've been feeling stuck or sad, I'm wondering how can YOU start sharing YOUR gifts?  

Maybe it's time to take out the art supplies, teach a class, read your writing out loud, or cook a meal for someone you love.

Ask yourself:   What do I love?  How can I be seen?  Where can I share and give more of myself?  

It may feel a little scary, unfamiliar or vulnerable, but know that I am right here cheering you on.  I would love nothing more than for you to wake up everyday feeling empowered and alive knowing your soul is being seen and expressed.

With love, 
Meredith

 

What My Cat Taught Me About Abundance

 

Last December I put on my high heels and red lipstick to go to a fancy holiday party at a beautiful modern home in Penngrove, CA.

However, this wasn't just any normal holiday party.  This was a Toastmasters holiday party, a public speaking group I have been a part of for the last year.  Three people were prepared to give a speech that night, and one of them was me. 

After much practicing in the back field of my home, I felt ready.  I was excited.  As I put on my jewelry and curled my hair, I reflected back on how much I had grown in just one year.

I remembered standing terrified looking out at the audience at a podium in front of thirty or forty people the first time I stood up to speak in front of this group.  Despite the fear of that first moment, I knew I was ready to grow, ready to face the fear, and over the last year, I have.  

Public speaking has become more and more familiar, and through putting myself on center stage, I have learned so much about myself and the craft of captivating an audience.

Over the last year, I realized there was a girl inside of me, ready to be SEEN, to be LOUD, ready to STAND UP and share her voice.

I was encouraged every step of the way by this amazing group of people of all ages and from all walks of life.  I delivered my speech, "The Gifts of Giving" at the Holiday party that nightand was on a total high.

Then just a few weeks ago, I was looking at the voice memos on my phone and discovered my boyfriend Michael had recorded the whole thing!

At first I felt shy about sharing it, but realized this magical story of giving and receiving could be inspiring for you to break free from scarcity and believe in the beauty, magic, and abundance all around you.  So here I am sharing it with you...

The speech is only 8 minutes long, so I hope you take some time to listen above.  You'll also learn how I ended up with a magical cat on my doorstep...

Warmly, Meredith

P.S.  Do you feel called to be seen and share your voice?  11 beautiful women will be joining me in Bali, Indonesia this May to do just that.  I will be sharing the practices that have helped me deeply connect to my intuition as well as tools for rising into leadership.  There are now only 2 spaces left in the Rising Women Leaders Bali Retreat.  If you have interest in joining us, apply now. <3

Photo by In Her Image Photography

 

Where the magic happens...

 
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Do you ever miss staying up late at night talking with your friends at sleepovers when you were younger? I remember when one of my clients told me about her dream to have close girlfriends again.  She missed the connection she had in her relationships to other women when she was younger.  As she grew up, and had a child of her own, she saw it was getting harder and harder to find the time for those kinds of friendship and connection.

This client was doing amazing work to make changes in her life, in her relationship to food, in growing her business and in taking better care of herself.

She saw that often she would turn to food for comfort was when she felt a loss of connection and friendship, so she was ready to cultivate more women friends in her life.

She was taking time out of her day to get really clear on what she wanted and needed.  Together, we made a plan, and I gave her an assignment to start a conversation with a new woman at the gym, and reach out to an old friend who recently moved to her area.

The next time we talked, I asked, "So how did it go for you?"

She replied, "Meredith, you aren't going to believe what happened.  I swear, this manifestation stuff really works.  So, you know how I was telling you about how I wanted to be closer to women like I was when I was younger?  Having slumber parties and girl time?"

"Yes..." 

"Well, just this week on Monday night, all three of my clients cancelled their appointments.  I suddenly had an open schedule.  My son was staying with his father for the night, and I thought, 'I'll just have an evening to myself...'  Then out of no where, a friend I haven't talked to in years called me up and said, 'My husband's out of town, and I treated myself to a night at a beautiful lodge in Marin.  Would you like to join me here?'"

"Amazing!  So did you?"

"Yes! and suddenly I was swimming in a gorgeous pool, my friend was treating me to dinner, and we stayed up late slumber-party style holding hands in bed sharing our dreams and desires.  It was EXACTLY what I wanted!" 

We both laughed and laughed at the amazement of what happened, but deep down, I wasn't surprised.

Ask, "What does my heart want, above all else?"  Then begin loving yourself and watch the fears, self-doubt and negative beliefs clear away.

The magic happens where courage and self-love intersect.

She had taken the time to connect to what she really wanted, what that would feel like, she was loving herself first and clearing away her fears and suddenly, her desires were showing up on her doorstep.

If you're ready to figure out what YOU want, I invite you to join my #LiveYourVision free training that begins today!

The free training gives a taste of the upcoming online course I'm leading in February, Vision.

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Vision is an 8-week online course for women ready to shift their thoughts and manifest their desires (enrollment and more details open January 19).  The program includes weekly group coaching calls, training videos, audio lectures, handouts, and the personal 40-Day Vision meditation practice I use for manifestation.

Meditation has been a huge part of my life and I'll be sharing the most powerful tools I've learned to shift my beliefs and manifest my desires in the free training.

When you sign up, each day for 8 days you will receive a daily action, video, insight or story to guide you on your path to #LiveYourVision.  

My intention is that these 8 days provide tools for you to connect to an innate love within yourself and a relationship to your inner guide that will benefit you throughout your entire life. 

(Optional) You're also welcome to post your photos of the daily actions on instagram for a chance to win a free spot in Vision!

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Here's your first daily action:

The first challenge is to create an altar and take a picture of your sacred space!

Instagram Challenge Rules:

  • Sign up here
  • Follow me @meredithrom
  • Watch your email inbox or my instagram post each morning with your challenge for the day.
  • Post your photos with the hashtag #LiveYourVision and let me know with a shout-out to @meredithrom
  • After the 8 days I will choose one lucky woman to join us for a free spot in the upcoming online course, Vision.  Simple!

One lucky winner will win a free spot in Vision.

I'll be posting a new picture and action step everyday on instagram until January 18.~

I can’t wait to see your pictures!

With love, Meredith

 

4 Questions to Ask Yourself When You're In A Rut

 

Last week I was on my first coaching call with a woman who had been going through several months of feeling depressed.  "I'm in a rut.  I don't wake up feeling happy like I used to.  I know I'm a happy person, but for some reason, I can't access that feeling right now.  I don't know what to do or where to start,"  she said.

I asked her questions about her life and found out about her stressful 50+ hour per week job, challenges in her relationship, and lack of connection to her body because of how much she was working.  As I listened actively with compassion and acknowledged her for all she had been going through, a lightbulb went off in my mind and I knew the exact next questions to ask her.  

Through my years of coaching women to find their voice, face their fears and manifest a new vision for their life, I have found there are four key areas that we can look at to lead us to greater joy, love and fulfillment.  I have found when I am sharing my gifts, facing my fears, taking care of my body, and creating structures of support around myself, I can't help but feel happy. 

The next time you are going through a rut, or feeling depressed, I invite you to ask these 4 questions:

1. Am I sharing my gifts to the fullest capacity?

It can feel pretty hard to be happy when we know we have strengths and skills that aren't being utilized.  This is why even when my clients are working at full-time jobs and don't plan to leave, I encourage them to find ways to share their natural and innate gifts either through their work or outside of it.  I also support new entrepreneurs who are ready to turn those gifts into their full-time work.  Every time, I have seen when we are finding ways to honor and share our gifts, it leads to a sense of fulfillment, wonder and joy.

2. When was the last time I stepped outside my comfort zone?

I need to consistently step outside my comfort zone in order to feel more alive.  I used to be so afraid to teach yoga, it was one of my biggest fears, but when I jumped in and did it anyway, I felt so full of life and proud of myself.  Now I have to find new ways to challenge myself, so twice a month I show up to a public speaking group where I get to tap into that feeling of nervousness and then feel proud of myself after giving a speech.

Eleanor Roosevelt says, "The very next thing you should be doing is what scares you the most."  So what is something that scares you?  Can you commit to facing that fear, knowing how good it will make you feel?

3. Am I listening to my body's wisdom?

Our bodies are full with wisdom and send us very clear signals when something needs to shift in our lives.  We develop pain, skin problems, or other symptoms when something is not right.  It is our job to listen to those signals instead of pushing them away.

I believe intuition is so important because it guides us closer to our purpose.  When we numb out the wisdom of our bodies, we lose our connection to divine guidance, we forget why we are here, and as a result can easily suffer from depression or feelings of meaninglessness.

However:

When we use our intuition, we are guided to our highest potential as beings and are able to live more meaningful, synchronous and connected lives.

The place to start, is simply taking good care of your body.  Eat well, take time to rest, exercise, do yoga, meditate.  When we are doing the simple acts of self-love and self-care, our body's wisdom will start revealing itself to us and we will know the next steps to take to lead us to greater joy.

4. What kind of support do I need?

I remember recently when I was going through a difficult time, I found myself relying mostly on my partner.  However, it became really difficult when my partner went away for two weeks and I didn't have him to listen to what I was going through. 

I told my friend Kevin about it and he shared a metaphor with me.  “If you’re only relying on one person in your life, it’s like you’re standing on top of a flagpole.  That’s a lot of pressure on one person, especially if his or her life is calling him or her to be elsewhere.” 

I imagined myself standing on top of a flagpole, shaky and worried of falling.

He continued, “However, if you become like a spider, with many legs supporting you, it’s okay if one of them takes a break.  You still have seven other legs to lean on.” 

When you are supported in all directions, your weight is evenly distributed.  It is so much healthier.

I think it’s really easy to get swept up in relying on just one person for our emotional, physical and mental needs.

However, when we create more structures of support through friendships, therapy, coaching, healers, and especially in community, we can really thrive.

So what kind of support could you need through this hard time?  Is it more friendship?  With women? With men?  Or could it be a therapist or coach that would be the best kind of support to you? 

When we are able to set up multiple layers of support around ourselves, no matter what happens, there will always be someone to turn to when you're looking for someone to listen. 

If you don't know where to start when it comes to sharing your gifts, facing your fears, listening to your body's wisdom, I invite you to ask for support.  I would love to connect with you more, hear what you have been going through and see how I may be able to support you, or point you in the right direction.  You're always welcome to contact me personally here.

 

A 4-Step Process to Help You Live the Life You Really Want

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What will you do with your wild & precious life?

That was a question I asked myself 5 years ago when I was living in NYC applying to jobs to work behind a computer 40 hours a week. I knew I needed something more, so I followed my intuition and booked a one-way ticket to California.

Following our intuition is a challenging process, but I promise you it's worth working through. I recently wrote a 4 step process to help you live the life you *actually* want and was lucky enough to be featured on Elephant Journal. 

In the comments, I'd love to hear, are you living the life you actually want? If you're struggling to take that next step toward freedom, start today! Set your intention and watch the magic unfold.

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All around me, I see women awakening to their gifts, their power and their purpose.

However, I see many of the same women held back by fear, self-doubt and limiting beliefs.

I see women full with creative ideas but lacking the structure and support to fully execute them. I also see women struggling to fully express themselves and believe in their power.

Growing up, I knew I had a big message to share, but I had trouble speaking up and expressing myself. In high school and college, when all eyes were on me, I would freeze and have trouble finding my voice.

Then, five years ago it became more important to me to become a yoga teacher than to let this fear run my life.

Since then, everything has changed.

I left New York City to move to California and I traveled in India for six months by myself. I started sharing my voice and little by little, gained confidence as a teacher and leader.

Now, life is magical. I teach yoga, lead retreats, give speeches and am even writing a book. I find myself finally living beyond fear. Since starting my business, I’ve guided women from all over the world manifest a new vision for their life. What I’ve seen is:

It takes willingness to face a fear, again and again.

As much as I wanted to avoid it, I realized in order to create the life of my dreams, I had to do what scared me.

People who are living their dreams were willing to step outside of their comfort zone. Somewhere along the line, they had to take a risk. It was really scary for me to move to California, start my business and teach yoga and lead workshops. But the thing is, I was able to work up to it. I gave myself small steps to gain confidence.

Here are four keys that helped me along the way...keep reading here.

Permission to Be Fearless

 
Photo taken at Burning Man, 2015

Photo taken at Burning Man, 2015

Last month on the Winter Solstice, I was invited to sing in front of 150 people. I arrived, a little nervous, but confident in my offering. I sat with my harmonium, poised with a microphone near my mouth and my instrument. I welcomed the group into a meditation and began to sing, "Ong Namo Gurudev Namo."

I finished the song feeling proud. I did it, I thought. The moment I had been anticipating for weeks was over. I did it. The brief moment in time felt so surreal.

I realized that if I had been asked to sing in front of a group this size a year ago, I would have been terrified. Expressing myself through my voice, especially singing, has been one of life's biggest challenges and greatest gifts.

I remember struggling to introduce myself in front of a small group of people in high school and freaking out before presentations in college. I always felt like a deer in the headlights and struggled to find my breath and voice.

The fear of sharing my voice was actually what inspired me to become a yoga teacher. I remember admiring my teacher in New York, gracefully walking across the room while powerfully commanding the yogis from one pose to the next. Could I ever be like that? I thought.

I was introduced to the harmonium by another yoga teacher, Kimber Simpkins, who opened and closed every class singing with the harmonium. As I began to use my voice, I felt the vibration in my body and began to discover the sound inside me. As I watched her, confident and poised, I again asked, Could I ever be like that?

Soon after discovering Kimber's classes, I fell in love with a musician. Watching him sing so beautifully in front of a crowd brought out all the insecurities inside me.

Every time I went to watch him perform, I felt more nervous than he did. I realized this fear was telling me something: maybe it was time for me to share my voice. I then discovered this quote from Eleanor Roosevelt:

Courage is more exhilarating than fear and in the long run it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight. Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down.

I began to make small steps to face the fear. First, I started teaching yoga classes. Every time I stood in front of the room as a teacher, I became more confident in myself and my voice. Each step I took to face the fear gave me the courage to go further.

I remember the first time I sang in front of my boyfriend, terrified at what he would think. My fingers were shaking on the guitar. I had him close his eyes because I felt so exposed. It was uncomfortable, yes, but I survived, and in the end, I received praise. I felt proud of myself.

That sense of pride kept me going.

My boyfriend encouraged me to step out of my shell. One night, I asked if he would sing with me around the fire at a friend's house. I felt the nervousness arise as I held the guitar, but I sang anyway. It wasn't perfect, but again, I was praised.

A few months later, I was at a full moon ceremony to release fear. As each person spoke, I knew this was the step I needed to take again and again to develop my strength. In the ceremony, I shared the fears I carried around my voice and did the thing that scared me most: I sang with the harmonium in front of the entire group.

There I was, years later, embodying the teachers I had looked up to most.

Every time I faced my fear and shared my voice, a new door opened from the universe. Opportunities and invitations came, and my confidence grew.  Eventually, I was led to the sacred moment at the Winter Solstice to share my voice with more people than I ever had before.

Every step of the way, I was being prepared.

Every step of the way, I had to trust myself that I was ready.

Through that trust, I have seen the universe open doors for me that I am ready for. I see women all around me answering the call to rise up in their power, their divine femininity and their voice. I have answered the call and am now encouraging other women to feed the flames, discover their power and stand strong in their voices.

If you are out there and have ever felt afraid to speak up, afraid to sing, or afraid to share, know that you're not alone.  I've been there and I can tell you from my experience: when opportunity comes knocking, trust in it. The universe is only going to present you with opportunities you are ready for; you can say yes, even when there is fear.

Your voice is ready.

Deep down, you know it is.  All you have to do is say yes.

 

6 Practical Insights on Happiness From the Road

 
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It's been six days on the road now - Michael and I have led four workshops together and already driven through five states. I feel myself sinking into more comfort as a teacher and a singer, gaining confidence in my own vision and voice as I teach others. Something both Michael and I have noticed since we left is that we are both really happy. There's a deep joy in our hearts as we travel from city to city. It made me wonder, "What's different now than before?"

I broke it down to what I think are six essential insights on happiness, and practical action steps you can take to find more happiness right now.

1. Seek out Community

We've been surrounded by loving, likeminded friends on every step of the journey. In each city on this trip we are being hosted by friends or friends of friends. We've had meaningful connections every step of the way. It's been different than my normal day-to-day working at home in my cottage, because I am actively seeking out and visiting my community.

Connection is an essential human need, and I can see, even as an introvert I have a large capacity for face time with people I love. It can be easy to get lost in my own world, connecting with others through the phone and the internet, but facetime with old and new friends is so key in continuing a feeling of happiness in my days.

2. Do a Random Act of Kindness

Before leaving San Francisco, Michael and I participated in the "Happiness Course" through The Art of Living. Our assignment one day was to do three random acts of kindness. It totally shifted my state of mind from thinking about myself to wondering how I could make someone else's day better. I asked, "Where can I find a homeless person to give money to?, "Where can I actively comment and engage on other people's blogs and social media?"  and "Who can I tell that I really appreciate them?"

One of the other students came back one day to say, "I bought the person behind me in line breakfast and he said, 'I just moved from the East coast and heard about things like this happening in Berkeley, but didn't believe it really would!'"

While on the road, we are being mindful of where we can be more generous and kind. From picking up the bill with a friend, to giving someone one of Michael's CD's who didn't expect it, every act of kindness has brought so much joy to my heart.

Often we wait to be generous when we have more, or forget to be kind. What simple act could you do today to make someone else's day better? Then do it, and notice how this makes you feel afterward.

 
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April_16__2015_at_0310PM

3. Look out for the magic

When you take steps outside of your comfort zone, especially while travelling, you begin to notice the magic that is all around you.

On my birthday this year, I pulled a card from my animal medicine tarot deck with the question, "What is my animal totem for the year?" It was the owl. Owl sees everything, even in the dark and is often the medicine of sorcerers and witches, those drawn to magical practices. The tarot deck said, "Pay attention to the signals and omens, owl will bring you messages through dreams and meditation."

For the last three nights, staying in the homes of three different people, there was a picture of an owl in the room.

Synchronicity is everywhere if you are on the lookout for it. Try using the affirmation, "I am awake to coincidences. I see them as messages from God."

When a synchronicity happens in my life, I immediately feel connected to the divine. I have more trust in the world around me and am able to let go of fears and sink into the joy of being guided.

4. Share your gifts

Knowing that I have workshops set up in every city I visit on this trip makes me so happy. To be in the act of service, and sharing our gifts is so satisfying. When I remember this trip isn't all about me, but that there are actually people we are here to help, I feel like I have a place in the bigger picture.

I've seen several people in tears during our workshops, touched by the music, and the space to open their voice and connect to avision for their lives and the world. We are offering an experience for others to connect to their heart by using our gifts and talents. We find that afterwards, no matter how many people showed up, we are so happy knowing we have done what we felt called to share.

5. Do what you love

Practicing yoga, teaching yoga, singing, being in the flow and visiting friends is essential to my happiness. When you give yourself permission to do what you love, everything else becomes more joyful.

When you priortize what makes you feel good, what makes you truly happy, life becomes a celebration.

What do you love? What makes you come alive? Is it the yoga class? A walk in nature? A tea date with a girlfriend? Go take action and do it.

6. Meditate

No matter how beautiful a place you find yourself in, if you don't feel good in your body and mind, it doesn't really matter.Focus within first. When you make your internal space a beautiful sanctuary, your surroundings will begin to reflect that.

When you soften around the edges, create more spaciousness and compassion within yourself, you meet difficulties that arise in life with fresh eyes. You can handle whatever comes your way.

Michael and I have meditated together every morning on this trip. We encourage each other in our practices because we know if we find love within ourselves first, we will be more kind and loving to each other.

When you take the time to process your own emotions, to be devoted to yourself, and connect to a larger vision, every action in your day becomes more clear. Intuition heightens and you know what steps to take next.

SO what will you work on to bring more happiness in your life? Will it be an act of kindness, sharing your gifts, or seeking out community? Whatever it is, I hope you take action on it right away. If you want to be held accountable, make a comment below to let me know what you'll be working on.

Our next event is a kirtan singing workshop in Boulder, CO on Wednesday April 29. Next week I'll be writing from New Mexico and Arizona as we continue our travels...

Find me on instagram @meredithrom to follow the journey day by day, as I'm posting about photos with stories from the road.

With love, Meredith

My most vulnerable text message

 
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I just got back from a ten day trip in Puerto Rico.  It was beautiful, and great to connect with my partner's family while on vacation there, but it also had it's challenges. I got sick in the last few days, and arrived back home recovering from a cold.  Luckily my voice and body was strong for our beautiful Spring Equinox Retreat, but the next day, I lost my voice.

I struggled with losing my voice, feeling uncomfortable in my body, and trying to catch up on work from being away.

I began leaning on my partner a lot without realizing it - he was doing all the dishes, cooking, making teas and tinctures for me to get better, and providing emotional support as my body healed.

Then, last night he left the house to see a friend. Standing alone in my kitchen, I began to cry.  I was upset about how long my body was taking to heal and that I was suddenly all alone in my struggle.  My partner was doing what he could to help, but I realized I was putting a lot of my needs all on one person.

I then grabbed my phone and wrote one of the most vulnerable texts I had ever sent. It was to three of my local girlfriends, I wrote, "Hey sisters, I could use some support tonight, if you're available please come visit me, I'm struggling with being sick and feeling isolated."

At first, I heard no response, and I started to feel so vulnerable.  I worried, "Am I being too direct?  Am I being an inconvenience?  I hope they don't think I'm a burden."

Then I realized, it didn't matter if they came or not, but it actually felt so good just to reach out.  Just in my reaching out, I was giving them permission to reach out and do the same when they are in need.

Every time we reach out to a sister when we're in need, we give her permission to do the same.  tweet it

It turned out none of them were available to come over and help me, but I felt their presence and lots of love flooded in to me in the form of words and pictures as they held space for me.  They wrote things like, "I'm so glad you know you can reach out like this."  "I can come over first thing in the morning..." and "I made an altar for you and am sending love..." It was beautiful.  I wasn't an inconvenience at all.

I was inspired to reach out because other women have felt safe reaching out to me.  And in my sharing, I hope to inspire you to feel safe in doing the same.

A Course in Miracles teaches us to make our friendships more romantic, and our romances more friendly.  When we even the field of our relationships like this, we take the pressure off just having only one person to lean on in our life, making all of our relationships healthier.

Now, what about you:  Do you have any relationships in your life you may be leaning on too much?

How could you lighten the load and create more of a support structure around you in your life?

I'd love to hear in the comments below.

With love, Meredith

 

Seven Signs You're A Modern Day Priestess

 
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When I was growing up and heard the word "priestess," I thought of boring sermons at church, wearing clothes I didn't feel comfortable in and being forced to sit quietly when I wanted to play outside. I didn't know much about what it meant to be a priestess other than it was probably the female version of a "priest." As a playful young girl, the thought of becoming a female priest sounded pretty mundane.

Then one day, a friend wrote out my numerology. It was the number eleven, which also breaks down to two. In tarot, the eleven (or two) corresponds to the archetype of the High Priestess. She told me in ancient times, the priestess was known for having a heightened contact to other realms through intuition and dreams. The community would seek counsel from priestesses to know what actions to take in their lives.

I thought about my life and how I had always had a heightened sense of intuition; of being able to feel into a situation in order to make a decision. I thought of how friends were naturally drawn to me for guidance and consolation during difficult times.

Maybe I was a priestess after all.

Over a few months, I felt more and more connected to the archetype of the High Priestess and dove into books and articles on the topic. I began to see: the modern day priestess lives anything but a mundane life. Her life is rich in dreams, intuition, ritual, feminine leadership and a connection to the divine.

Here are seven signs there is a modern day priestess awakening within you:

Your Calling is to be of Service

To be a leader, you must first learn to serve. —Jennie Mira

The priestess is not a teacher or leader on a pedestal, but rather, she is of the highest service.  She is in service to her community and to her calling.  Being of service is not about placing anyone above or below, but rather creating a mutual relationship of respect between the priestess and the women she facilitates and serves.

Her work is to become a channel, a vessel to serve the highest good of the divine.  She must maintain a practice of self-care to be the most present and abundant in her ability to serve and become a channel.

Many women fantasize about a priestess wearing flowing robes, crowns and using magical tools, but in reality the priestess must be prepared "to be the last one in the rented hall, scraping candle wax droppings with a razor blade."  ~ Ruth Barrett

You are Highly Intuitive

The priestess uses practices such as writing, dancing, movement, meditation, self-care and alone time to hone her ability to listen to intuition. Our intuition is like a muscle that heightens when we pay attention to it. The more she can quiet the busyness of her mind, the more access she will have to the guidance of the divine and be able to step into the role of a channel to those in need.

You Seek Out Ritual in Your Daily Life

Rituals infuse magic, intention and sacredness into our daily lives. A ritual can turn a mundane act done without awareness into a sacred act with clarity and purpose. Slowing down to say a blessing before a meal changes the experience. Meditation, singing, or lighting a candle imbues a moment of peace and serenity into a busy day.

Ritual can also be a healing space where women come together to honor a specific purpose. These rituals may honor transitions, letting go, grieving, the lunar cycle or the change of seasons. Participating in ritual has been one of the most healing ways to mark a big transition in my life. Ritual has provided a space for me to be fully seen, acknowledged and supported by my sisters. After participating in ritual, I feel more confident and courageous to share myself with the world.

Your Internal Clock is Synced with the Moon

In ancient times, women slept in tribes, often under the stars and the moon. Their menstrual cycles were in sync with each other and with the lunar cycles: bleeding at the new moon and ovulating at the full moon.

You may begin to be more in tune to the natural world and notice energy levels rise and fall. Going out to socialize will make more sense with the heightened energy of the full moon and slowing down to nest will feel perfect at the new moon. For a modern day priestess, creativity, energy levels and social needs begin to flow in tandem with the moon and tides.

You Are Highly Sensitive

A priestess can feel the energies of the room and has a heightened ability to feel other people's emotions. This can be difficult for highly sensitive women because the world may sometimes feel like "too much."

In my last program, one of the woman "came out" as an HSP (highly sensitive person) and nearly all the others spoke up to share how much they related to and supported her. As a highly sensitive person, you may feel alone in a world of extroverted and gregarious people, however we often forget that heightened sensitivity is a gift.  You can fuel your feelings and emotions into writing, singing, and listening with a deeper level of compassion for others.

You Have Prophetic Dreams

Have you ever dreamt something and realized it became your reality a week later? A priestess often turns to her dreams for guidance. Dreams are a powerful place to explore questions in your life and to connect to the desires of your subconscious self.

One practice I use often is re-entering dreams. When you are unsure of how to decipher the symbols or occurrences of a dream, close your eyes and imagine yourself back in the space. Then go to characters and objects one at a time and ask, "What do you have to show me?" You will probably be surprised with the answers your subconscious comes up with.

You Are Naturally Drawn to Holding Space

The twenty-first century priestess becomes the container who helps create sacred space wherein women can connect with the Goddess within. —Ruth Barrett

A priestess is a space-holder. She creates the space for others to show up as they are. Have you noticed that people turn to you to guide them through an experience? Holding space is not about planning or knowing what to do or say. It is about becoming present to the moment. All that is needed is to tune into the energy of the person or the group; to listen and ask for guidance within.

In the comments, I'd love to hear what a "priestess" means to you and how can you embody the priestess in your daily life?

 

Permission to Be Fearless

 
courage-divine-feminine-overcome anxiety

Last month on the Winter Solstice, I was invited to sing in front of 150 people. I arrived, a little nervous, but confident in my offering. I sat with my harmonium, poised with a microphone near my mouth and my instrument. I welcomed the group into a meditation and began to sing, "Ong Namo Gurudev Namo."

I finished the song feeling proud. I did it, I thought. The moment I had been anticipating for weeks was over. I did it. The brief moment in time felt so surreal.

I realized that if I had been asked to sing in front of a group this size a year ago, I would have been terrified. Expressing myself through my voice, especially singing, has been one of life's biggest challenges and greatest gifts.

I remember struggling to introduce myself in front of a small group of people in high school and freaking out before presentations in college. I always felt like a deer in the headlights and struggled to find my breath and voice.

The fear of sharing my voice was actually what inspired me to become a yoga teacher. I remember admiring my teacher in New York, gracefully walking across the room while powerfully commanding the yogis from one pose to the next. Could I ever be like that? I thought.

I was introduced to the harmonium by another yoga teacher, Kimber Simpkins, who opened and closed every class singing with the harmonium. As I began to use my voice, I felt the vibration in my body and began to discover the sound inside me. As I watched her, confident and poised, I again asked, Could I ever be like that?

Soon after discovering Kimber's classes, I fell in love with a musician. Watching him sing so beautifully in front of a crowd brought out all the insecurities inside me.

Every time I went to watch him perform, I felt more nervous than he did. I realized this fear was telling me something: maybe it was time for me to share my voice. I then discovered this quote from Eleanor Roosevelt:

"Courage is more exhilarating than fear and in the long run it is easier. We do not have to become heroes overnight. Just a step at a time, meeting each thing that comes up, seeing it is not as dreadful as it appeared, discovering we have the strength to stare it down."

I began to make small steps to face the fear. First, I started teaching yoga classes. Every time I stood in front of the room as a teacher, I became more confident in myself and my voice. Each step I took to face the fear gave me the courage to go further.

I remember the first time I sang in front of my boyfriend, terrified at what he would think. My fingers were shaking on the guitar. I had him close his eyes because I felt so exposed. It was uncomfortable, yes, but I survived, and in the end, I received praise. I felt proud of myself.

That sense of pride kept me going.

My boyfriend encouraged me to step out of my shell. One night, I asked if he would sing with me around the fire at a friend's house. I felt the nervousness arise as I held the guitar, but I sang anyway. It wasn't perfect, but again, I was praised.

A few months later, I was at a full moon ceremony to release fear. As each person spoke, I knew this was the step I needed to take again and again to develop my strength. In the ceremony, I shared the fears I carried around my voice and did the thing that scared me most: I sang with the harmonium in front of the entire group.

There I was, years later, embodying the teachers I had looked up to most.

Every time I faced my fear and shared my voice, a new door opened from the universe. Opportunities and invitations came, and my confidence grew.  Eventually, I was led to the sacred moment at the Winter Solstice to share my voice with more people than I ever had before.

Every step of the way, I was being prepared.

Every step of the way, I had to trust myself that I was ready...

Through that trust, I have seen the universe open doors for me that I am ready for. I see women all around me answering the call to rise up in their power, their divine femininity and their voice. I have answered the call and am now encouraging other women to feed the flames, discover their power and stand strong in their voices.

If you are out there and have ever felt afraid to speak up, afraid to sing, or afraid to share, know that you're not alone.  I've been there and I can tell you from my experience: when opportunity comes knocking, trust in it. The universe is only going to present you with opportunities you are ready for; you can say yes, even when there is fear.

Your voice is ready.

Deep down, you know it is.  All you have to do is say yes.

 

How I Found My Glow As A Feminine Leader

 
leadership-self love-body love-courage

I was recently thinking back to when I first started teaching yoga.

I went a whole year after my training before I started teaching. I used the excuse, "I don't know enough yet" and I went to find more trainings.

But really, I was afraid of being seen as a teacher or a leader.

I felt insecure, my skin was breaking out and I wasn't eating well. However, I didn't know any better. I was eating lots of sugar, dairy and flour while I travelled India going to meditation retreats and trainings.

When I returned home, the thought of being in front of my friends, let alone a group of students at the front of the room teaching, felt terrifying.

Because I didn't feel good in my body, I didn't have the confidence to stand in front of the room as a teacher. I didn't have the courage to lead.

Luckily around that time, I started learning about nutrition, and how what I was eating was affecting my body. I read the book, 12 Steps to Raw Foods, by Victoria Boutenko and decided to try eating raw foods for a few weeks to cleanse my body of all the toxins I had accumulated from a poor diet.

My acne slowly began to clear up and I discovered an inner and outer glow I hadn't had before.  I saw that

The more you take care of yourself from the inside, the more confidence you have on the outside. {tweet it}

The better I felt in my body, the more courage I had to take risks and lead from my heart.

The last few years I immersed myself into books, programs and school to learn more about nutrition, how to clear my skin, and develop more confidence from the inside out.

Many of my clients have had similar challenges when it comes to sugar cravings, imbalanced hormones, mood swings and cystic acne. I see many women trying to reconnect to the rhythms of their body, but not sure where to start.

I decided it was time for me to share this knowledge. I created a teleclass series, Find Your Glow As A Feminine Leader. to share the steps I used to clear my skin, nutrition tips to balance hormones naturally, sync with your cycle and tap into feminine energy to develop a fearless inner confidence to become a leader and a teacher.

I am overflowing with information on this topic, way more than I could share in a blog post or email, so I created the teleclass series for those of you ready to go deeper and learn more.  If you feel called, sign up here!

Love, Meredith

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About the Author:

Meredith Rom empowers women to access self-love and divine feminine wisdom through yoga, coaching, and writing.

 

Why I am choosing life

 
courage-haling-health-chooselife
On Friday, a new woman came to my gentle flow and restorative yoga classes in Santa Rosa.  She was the first person there, so I introduced myself and asked the usual question, "Do you have any injuries I should know about?" 
She replied, "Many. I'm recovering from surgery and my second round of breast cancer treatments.  This time, the doctors had to do several surgeries and I have scar tissue on the front of my body." I was shocked.  Here I was, in my own bubble all week, spending time on emails and to-do lists, thinking about my own little problems.
All my problems suddenly seemed so small. 
More people trickled into the room and laid out their mats while I was still processing what this new student had just told me.As the other students sat down, I asked, "Would you share with us any insights you've been learning and how you have changed your approach to life?" She said, "After I found out I had cancer the second time, it was hard, but I had a distinct moment where I told myself, 'I choose life' and that pulled me through."  I thought about the times in my life when I had sank into feelings of meaninglessness and looked back at this courageous woman sitting in front of me.

It takes courage to choose life. {tweet it}

I realized I had never had that distinct moment of "I choose life" like this woman had.  She reminded me that my life is a gift.  Every moment is a gift, and everyday we have the choice to truly live.  In that moment, I chose life, inspired by her courage.

She went on to say, "I now choose to do something that makes me happy, everyday.  That's why I'm here at yoga."

So today, I simply want to remind you: You are the owner of your time.  You are choosing how you spend it.  

And I'd like to ask you a few questions:

  • What could you do today that brings you more joy?
  • What does 'choosing life' look like to you?
  • Is it different than how you are living right now?  If so, what is one step you can take to change it?

I'd love to hear in the comments below.

Your life is a gift.  Claim it.  Live it.

Love,

Meredith
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About the Author:
Meredith Rom facilitates women's empowerment work, teaches yoga, and is the author of the "4 Day Self-care Reset." 
 

My story of transformation

 
courage-sisterhood-self love

In 2011 I started writing a book about synchronicity, the chain of events that links one thing to another in an almost too perfect way.  

I had just come back from six months traveling in India visiting spiritual teachers, living in ashrams and attending meditation retreats.  I was full with stories that seemed almost "too crazy to be true," so I sat down and started writing them.

Unfortunately, a few months later I got swept up in the need to earn money and find a place to live in the Bay Area housing scene.

My writing was pushed to the side...Until two months ago.

I woke up from a dream, where I found a book in a drawer, and was flipping through the beautiful pages - of what happened to be - another woman's travels!  There were photographs, beautiful designs and stories woven throughout.  I woke up and thought, "That was supposed to be the book, I wrote.  I need to do this." 

Moments like this, of synchronicity, have always brought me back to feeling like life has more meaning.  These moments have helped me believe there really is something more out there, linking us all to each other and to something greater...

But a few years ago I didn't know what synchronicity was or even fully believe miracles could be real...

At the time I was applying for jobs I didn't want, had chronic pain in my body and my skin was constantly breaking out.  I felt stressed and insecure - physically and emotionally.

One night, I was riding a subway alone in New York City feeling so depressed.  I went to a party looking for connection, but all I found was beer and small talk.  I felt alone and lost.

I sat and looked at the woman sitting across from me in the subway.  She was overweight, looked like she had just gotten off work in the subway system, and seemed equally exhausted, stressed out, and depressed.

I started thinking "What is the point? What is the point in living a life just to earn money and feed into a system that makes me feel like I'm not enough?  So that I spend more money, and need to earn more money working at a computer all day at a job I hate?  So I continue to have terrible chronic pain in my body and feel the need to numb myself out all the time??"

I went home that night and cried, feeling all the pain that arose from asking those questions.

Luckily, around this same time, a friend brought me to my first yoga class.

I remember lying in pigeon pose and realizing that instead of resisting all the pain in my body and my life, I could just be with it.  And in that willingness to be with it, I began to find release. 

I learned, that instead of trying to distract myself from my problems by going to food, to sugar, to alcohol, or to the pills the doctors gave me, I could be present with my body and ask what it was trying to tell me.

I see now, everything I have gone through, from the chronic aches and pains, the acne, the headaches and the jaw clenching, it has all been telling me, "Look at the root of the problem. What needs to change in your life?"

That was when I began to truly take care of myself. 

I started paying attention to what I ate.  I spent less time on the computer, took baths, went to yoga classes, and began addressing this pain I was trying to push away.

 I started loving my body, even with all its aches and its pains.  

And in that presence, in the willingness to just "be with it" instead of numbing myself out with food, sugar, alcohol, or the pills the doctors gave me, I was granted access to my intuition.  I was granted access to my body's wisdom.

That intuition told me to go to San Francisco, and a few months later, I did.  I moved on a total whim, not knowing anyone in the city and found a sublet on craigslist in an artist collective.

When I moved, I made a vow to start following my intuition and listen to my body.

Just days later a man came up to me in a park and said, "I'm going to meet a saint this weekend, and I think you're supposed to come..."  I listened.  

I started seeing visions of India in my meditations.  I listened.   I woke up one day with the strong urge to become a yoga teacher.  I listened.  

My intuition opened me to new visions, my path, my purpose, and my passions.

When I started following these passions, I quickly saw I needed to face my fears.  Thoughts like, "But how will I speak in front of a group?  How will I find the money to go to a teacher training?  How can I go to India by myself without a plan?  People will think I'm crazy!"  played over in my mind.

But I took action anyway.

I knew I needed to step outside my comfort zone to manifest my visions.

Up to now I've stood for courage and self-love. All along I've known, courage and self-love were key -- but for what?

I'm seeing now, courage and self-love are key for synchronicity...

As I meditated yesterday, these words dropped into my mind:

"When you love your body and live your passions life becomes full of magic."

"Oh," I thought to myself.  "That's it."

I am here to love my body, even with all the symptoms, aches and pains it sometimes shows me.  I am here to live my passions, because when I do, I open myself to synchronicity, joy, love, and ultimately, a more meaningful life.

And now, I am here to help you shift your thoughts, your beliefs and your reality.

When I started loving my body and living my passions, it all clicked.  I tapped into synchronicity.  Life had meaning again.  My life became magical.  

And I believe so can yours.

So today, in service to you, your body, and your passions, I ask, "What would a magical life look like to you?  How would you feel?  How would you treat your body?  and What passions would you be living?"

I would love to hear, in the comments below.

In service to you, sister.

May you love your body. May you live your passions. May you tap into a magical life full with love, joy, and synchronicity.

With love,

Meredith

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About the Author:

Meredith Rom is a spiritual activist who’s work has been empowering women since 2010. She helps women tap into self love and a life full of magic through her writing, coaching, and yoga retreats.