As part of my job as Author, Speaker, and Bringer of the Mojo, I write a monthly newsletter called The Rose Report. In it, I include a message of inspiration typically about self-acceptance, gratitude, consciousness, and other warm, fuzzy things that make life so juicy. However, I have not felt like a Bringer of the Mojo over the last few months due to my recent, hellacious cross-country move.
When I had to write this month's newsletter, I was faced with a choice. Do I pretend that everything is hunky-dory, or do I share my inner ick? As with writing my book, Opening the Kimono: A Woman's Intimate Journey Through Life's Biggest Challenges, I decided to have some cajones and go for the latter. I know from personal experience that it is where the healing takes place. Here is what I wrote:
"FINDING MY WAY BACK...
Just as I wrote in last month's Rose Report, I continue to struggle to find my footing in my new home of Minnesota. While I have been blessed to spend more time with family and meet new, wonderful friends, I am still filled with a fair amount of fear. And panic. And anger. And annoyance. And depression. And every other negative emotion one can feel.
As a self-proclaimed "Bringer of the Mojo", it pains me to show you this small, disconnected part of me. I am feverishly trying to grow my professional speaking business, but I am feeling like a phony right at the moment. (How does one promote a speaking program called "Maximizing Your Mojo" when the speaker's Mojo is missing in action?) I dreaded having to write this month's newsletter, knowing that if I wrote a bunch of "life's-wonderful-be-grateful-you're-beautiful-everything's-a-gift" stuff, it would merely come across as empty platitudes from a woman who resembles a sad, powerless mutation of her true self. If you haven't noticed, I need someone to bring some Mojo my way.
The thing that's even more obnoxious about my descent into the dark side is that I know the cause of it! In a nutshell, I have not yet been successful in re-establishing my spiritual practice in my new house. I can count on one hand the number of times I meditated over the last thirty days, and I have done precious little movement. While I have somehow been able to sever the vice-grip sugar addiction I acquired during the move itself, I am still pounding my head against the wall, both personally and professionally. The price I have paid for ignoring Spirit has been a big one. I have been short with Emma more often than I care to admit, felt sluggish and icky physically, and obsessed over the fact that my book sales are lagging despite the overwhelming enthusiasm from readers and critics. Long story short, I am still teensy, tiny Theresa.
My mother used to have a saying that she would use during a particularly difficult situation. She used to say, "There is a four-letter word that will fix any problem: W-O-R-K." While I appreciated her teaching me about the value of a strong work ethic, a part of me believes that it was damaging in the long run. For the last sixty days, I have been consumed with that four-letter word. I have started working as soon as Emma goes to school, go non-stop for several hours without a break, and plug away until well into the evening. My neurotic behavior hasn't netted me any great successes; rather, it has fueled my sour attitude that has, unfortunately, permeated our home. In hindsight, I should have focused on the other four-letter words that would have helped me so much more: L-O-V-E and P-R-A-Y. Ironically, in order to kick myself out of this nasty funk I've put myself in, I need to do a lot less working and a lot more loving and praying.
Why on earth would I want to publicly share this bit of ugliness in a newsletter designed to pump people up? If I learned anything from writing Opening the Kimono, its that the act of sharing one's gunk allows it to be released, opening one up to new possibilities of power and joy. Hopefully, you will recognize some of your own self-inflicted smallness in my telling, and realize that we ALL have these moments once in a while. I know from first-hand experience that getting out of the spiral of depression is a challenging exercise. However, no amount of chocolate, movies, or complaining will make it any better. You have to carve out time to sit in silence every day, even if it is for only a few minutes. You have to move your body in more ways that just from bed to the table to the chair and back to bed. You have to honor the fact that if you want to heal yourself, you need to ask for help, not only from friends and family, but also from your Spiritual Posse. I guess Mom was right after all; you gotta WORK at it.
I no longer want to feel this badly. I no longer want to feel the fear of failure. I no longer want to go to bed angry. It is up to me to step back into my power, and I start working it. My first task is to ask for your help. Take one moment after reading this email to visualize both you and me as powerful "Bringers of the Mojo". See the two of us letting go of the vices and addictions that keep us tiny. Imagine that everything we desire is flowing to us easily and effortlessly. As I am writing this, I am imagining this for us both. Now, we need only to make those choices that will fulfill this vision.
This month, I will try to find my way back to the meditation room, back to the hoop, back to the yoga mat, and back to me. I hope you, too, have a wonderful, colorful, blissful, healthful October...just like I envisioned it to be!
Take care, and let's BOTH make it a great day!
The response has been nothing short of phenomenal. I have received dozens of positive email responses from people over the last few hours. Their words were tender, vulnerable, honest, and courageous. Some wrote several paragraphs, and some merely a few sentences. While every person has a different story, every email contained the same theme: Thank you for sharing your heartfelt words, and I FEEL EXACTLY THE SAME WAY. It's good to know that I am not the only one out there.
I needed to hear this today. I needed to remember that my work is important and helps people. I can get lost in the depression of publisher rejections, stalled proposals, and meager book sales. The gifts I have received this morning are like precious jewels for my psyche. As such, they are going to be filed in my "Smiles" email folder. When things are especially difficult on the financial front, I am going to look back at these notes to remember why I've chosen to be an Author, Speaker, and Bringer of the Mojo in the first place.
I am so grateful for being reminded that we all go through the same struggles. It makes me feel like I'm not alone in this journey, and sharing our stories with each other will help us find our way back to joy. Together.
(If you want to receive the Rose Report for yourself, please visit my web site!)