Mojo Monday ~ This is the Year of…

In October of 2008 I attended my first Cosmic Cowgirl event.  It was the Bountiful Conference and really I had no idea what attending that one conference would lead to and how it would alter my future.   Now it wasn’t like everything fell into perfect place and I immediately began to follow my true purpose.  There were some bumps along the way, in fact on my 40th birthday in April of 2009 some news made me feel that my world was crashing down around me and there were some very tough days from that point forward.  Yet, even through that year, which was one of my own dark nights of the soul, Cosmic Cowgirls was one of the things that sustained me.  It was a combination of both the amazing women I had met, but also just knowing that something like Cosmic Cowgirls could even exist.  I was sustained by knowing that there were women from around the country and even overseas, who were connecting and creating a circling tribe full of artistic, creative, passionate, loving, inspiring, kick-up-their-boots hootin’ and hollerin’ kick-ass wild women.

I have learned so much from the classes I have taken with Cosmic Cowgirls.  One of the biggies is about the power of intention.  In 2010 as things in my life were healing and as I delved back into participating more with Cosmic Cowgirls I attended the member conference and then I took the class called A Year of Great Promise.  Meeting in person with some sister Cosmic Cowgirls was good for the soul and during our time together we contemplated what we wanted to declare for that year.  What I ended up declaring for myself was that 2010 was the Year of Passionately Embracing My Soul’s Creative Calling.  We also shared something we were going to release and my personal declaration was “I release perfection and embrace myself with Grace and Love.”  We created collages and special containers to hold our dreams and goals for ourselves for the year.   The course called A Year of Great Promise was really powerful and by the time the course ended I had about a 15 page document that detailed my vision for myself and the life I want to lead. 

The art collage I created in 2010.

Somehow in the beginning of 2011 I did not make a statement for the year and now I see that I was pressing forward with continuing as I did in 2010 to embrace my creative calling.  I joined the Cosmic Cowgirls 6 month long Leading A Legendary Life course in 2011, which was a big dream for me.  Again the work completed led me to feel more confident in my artistic abilities and to gain more clarity on the personal legend I am creating. 

A week ago when I pulled out the letter I had written to myself back in 2010 I knew immediately what my 2012 declaration would be and without hesitation I said to myself 2012 is the year of completion and new beginnings.  I love the clarity that I have this year, but don’t be disheartened if that is not the case for you.  It can actually be fun and interesting to still be in the place of figuring it out and exploring what you are wishing for to happen next. 
As I write this Mojo Monday post I am realizing that I have not yet considered if there is something I wish to release and embrace this year.  The first thing that comes to mind is the fretting I have done over friendship these past few years.  I experienced some shifts in friendships that put me through a great deal of distress for a few years.  I think it has taken this much time to get to this place and makes it possible for me to say that I release those former connections with great love and I embrace knowing deep in my soul that though I am imperfect and may make mistakes I am a loving and good hearted friend who cares and loves deeply and never intentionally hurts others.
My letter I wrote to myself in 2010.

Before I bid 2011 goodbye I will write myself a letter and I will create a new piece of art that will represent my intentions for the new year.  

Consider what your heart and soul wishes for you in the new year.
Join me in making your own declaration and then make the time to go through your own creative process of expressing that declaration. 

Maybe you want to create a collage or paint the vision you hold for yourself. 

Another possibility is to write a poem or take some photographs that capture your intentions.

Also is there something you wish to release and in turn embrace? 
I hope you’ll share your new year declaration and your plans for releasing and embracing.   

If you need time to think it through, explore it this week and come back and share what arises for you.

One other great lesson I have learned is that there is great power in speaking aloud one’s intentions.  One can gain strength from sharing such things within a community or a circle.  

I offer that this is a great place to be witnessed and heard.

With Love and In Support of Your Intentions,
Michelle (aka Red and Ida Shine!)

Some other things to explore as you ponder your dreams and goals:

Oprah’s January issue that is just about to hit the stands has a great article by Martha Beck called You Can See Clearly Now.  She takes readers through a clarifying process of really determining what one wants.  She breaks it down into the four P’s: Pushback, Possibilities, Preferences and Pinpointing. In the simplest terms Pushback involves figuring out what you don’t want. Martha describes it as the “bitch and moan” portion that allows you to figure out that you no longer what to do such and such or no longer want to be with so and so.  The next step of Possibilities involves beginning to use your imagination to see past what is no longer working for you.  She describes Preferences as being the place where you start to notice which possibilities leave you feeling intrigued, curious, and a bit lighter.  When you get to the Pinpoint part this is when you are finally reaching clarity on exactly what you want.  You are envisioning it and can then set your intentions on achieving it.

There is a great book called Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath.  I was given this book a several years ago by the fost-adoption agency I have worked for for nearly 8 years now.  When you buy the book new there is a sealed envelope in the back that when opened provides you with a key to enter into an on-line personality test.  I was really blown away by the accuracy of the results.  The exam identifies your strengths and can be a tool for some people to use in seeking their path in life.

Lastly for fun you can always check your numerology and see what personal year you happen to be leaving and which one you are about to gain entry to in 2012.  Supposedly we go through 9 year life cycles.  2011 was a 9 year for me which means I am at the end of a cycle.  Entering into a 1 year in 2012 means I am embarking on a new cycle.  A common description of a 9 year is that this is your year to finish up all unfinished business, to clean house and make room for new things.  In short the 1 year is described as follows: You are starting a new nine year Epicycle. Everything you do now will affect your future. Do not hold back the inner force of creation. Be direct, daring, bold. You will have more confidence and determination this year, particularly in comparison with last year, which was a time of letting go. This year represents a time of birth. It’s a time to take charge and to apply yourself to your dream.

Two sites that offer free numerology readings can be found here:

Mojo Monday ~ Live With Intention

What do you think of this poem called Live with Intention

How does it make you feel?

Mary Anne Radmacher , the author of the poem, often has her profound writing quoted. Mary Anne has a powerful way with words and has written the following inspiring books: Lean Forward Into Your Life, Live Boldly, Promises to Myself, Courage Doesn’t Always Roar and May Your Walls Know Joy. Her latest book is called Live With Intention: Rediscovering What We Deeply Know.
In this latest book here is what Mary Anne has to say about her poem Live with Intention.
“This poem contains ten elements that summarize my ‘one thing.’ How I want to live my life. When I ask people to identify ten components that enliven them, that improve their day, that make their heart sing….consistently they identify things amazingly close to the elements in Live with Intention. I love that the word ‘intention’ has the ‘ten’ just build right in!”
If we do everything else but that one thing, we will be lost.
And if we do nothing else but that one thing, we will have lived a glorious life.
~ Rumi
“I take Rumi’s reference to the ‘one thing’ to mean the collection of elements, activities, attitudes, and actions that enliven and invigorate an intentional life.”
Mary Anne continues on in the introduction which focuses on intentions with the following:  “It is easy to grow into forgetting. Forgetting our personal priorities. Forgetting the things that bring us zip, verve, and fundamental joys. We roll into the habit of meeting the expectations of others, seeking approval by fitting in and, in general, responding to a status quo that is not resonant with our soul. How do we remember those things that have been set aside, disregarded, or positioned last on the ‘list’?”
“Rediscovering, reconnecting to your intentions….will restore, renew, and bring to the forefront the life that you long to live.”
How does one do that… “Observe your life. Watch how your days unfold. Notice what invigorates or inspires you. Pay particular attention to the things for which you have unbounded energy and excitement. Making a list of these things is especially helpful. Some things are so deeply embedded into our experience, it can be difficult to see them. Part of this observation process involves being aware of what tires you, burns you out in an undesirable way. Perhaps there are events in which you are regularly involved that seem significant, but upon closer examination, you find actually drag you down, rather than elevate you. Many discover that their most significant intentions get the least amount of attention. Oddly, the ‘one thing’ to which Rumi makes reference is often the last thing on lists of things to do. It is that proverbial carrot that is saved for a someday that hardly ever comes.
Do you know the one thing or the collection of things that together comprise the ‘one thing’ that invigorates all your actions and sets you on fire? If you know it, do you measure the activities and focus of your day by it? If you do not know it, how do you make decisions and what do you measure them against?
Over a period of a week or a month, watch how you make decisions. To what do you dedicate your time and attention? Learn from those things to which you say yes and those that receive your ‘No thank you.’ It is helpful to make notes on a daily basis. At the end of your observation period, you can draw certain conclusion. Categorize the events that both invigorate and drain you. Consider the balance between them and follow those threads to discover your intentions…your one thing.”
Do you already know “your one thing?” or are you still seeking?

If you are still uncertain and exploring, consider using Mary Anne’s recommendations to discover your intentions.

As we stand on the edge of entering into a new year, this too can be a most opportune time to focus and set some goals and make decisions on what you want to accomplish.

You might also want to write your very own personal and legendary proclamation for the new year. Here is an example of my personal statement for this past year: “This is the year of passionately embracing my soul’s creative calling.”

Cosmic Cowgirls is also offering a new session of Spark in January and March!   Sparking is a great way to set an intention and really give it daily attention and focus. You can learn more by clicking here.

I’ll leave you with a special new piece by Mary Anne that she shared on her web site.

She writes “This is from a new piece I’m working on. If it inspires you it’s a gift: download it and use it for any non- commercial use. The title of the poem is THIS IS WHAT YOU SHALL DO. I feel strongly that it may take a place alongside LIVE WITH INTENTION as a legacy piece of my life’s work.

The full version is going to be available as a time limited new year’s edition. I’ll keep you posted on that.

Sweetness in your days – THRIVE! Mary Anne

Mojo Monday: Manifesto

Manifesto ~ a written statement declaring publicly the intentions, motives, or views of its issuer.

At the Cosmic Cowgirl Bountiful Conference in October 2008 Sark presented a writing workshop on the second day. One of the activities she facilitated was to create our own Writer’s Manifesto. Sark shared with us one she had created and that appeared in her book Juicy Pens, Thirsty Paper: Gifting the World with Your Words and Stories, and Creating the Time and Energy to Actually Do It.

Here is the Writer’s Manifesto I created that day at the conference.

Several months later I created a second manifesto for myself called my Artist Manifesto while I was facilitating a playshop for some women friends and family. I suggested that each woman create a manifesto that spoke to her specific vision or dream which might be a Therapist manifesto, an Entrepreneur Manifesto or a Mama Manifesto.

The possibilities are endless as to what you want to declare and what intention you wish to focus on at this time in your life. What type of Manifesto would you create? Share with me the topic and if you feel inspired please write it all out and share it in a comment. If you decide to get colorful and add paint and perhaps even some glitter, take a photo and post it on your blog or web site and then share a link in the comment section.