On The View From The Bay: Lessons in Visioning

On Wednesday, I was live on a local San Francisco TV talk show The View From The Bay.  I talked with co-hosts Spencer Christian and Janelle Wang about balancing acts for busy moms (you can watch it here).  Janelle, Spencer and everyone at the studio are so incredibly nice which made the whole experience even that much more enjoyable.  I am extremely grateful to the several Lady Launchers who cheered me on from the studio audience and to Adryenn Ashley who was by my side backstage for extra moral support.

Over the past couple of days, I’ve reflected on a few important lessons that this experience underscores for me.  These lessons include the power of:

  • Visioning and writing things down
  • Showing up
  • Taking care of myself.

Lesson 1: Visioning and writing things down. Being on The View From The Bay was one of my goals for this year.  I wrote about it in a letter to myself from the future.  Also, in the marketing section my Right-Brain Business Plan, I included “be on The View From The Bay this year using creativity to get clear on vision.”  You bet I was excited that I got to show an Unfolding Your Life Vision collage book as one of the tips on getting more balanced!

Right before the Sacramento & Co. show and VFTB, I even wrote on my wish cards to get clear about how I wanted to show up.  My visions for each appearance included descriptions like being calm, comfortable, poised, engaging, informative, personable, positive, clear, present, relaxed, and inspiring.  I brought my cards with me and also printed out of all the lovely comments and e-mails people shared from the Sacramento show to help ground me.  It was really cool to get feedback afterward that was very much in alignment with my intention.

Lesson 2: Showing up. A few people have asked me how did I get on the show. It started simply by showing up!  Adryenn sometimes gets tickets to the studio audience, so when she offered tickets at the end of September, I said, “Yes!”  I was a geek and read up on the show and the hosts before I went.  I didn’t know this, but on commercial breaks they ask the audience trivia questions.  I actually won a prize because I got one of the questions right from reading the bios and I got to wave into the camera!  After the show, I had Adryenn introduce me to Janelle and I gave her one of my Unfolding Your Life Vision Kits.   Adryenn highly encouraged me to come back the next day and I did.  To my surprise, Janelle remembered me!  She said she had a story idea and to come see her after the show!  I worked with Adryenn to develop a formal pitch, sent it in and then was asked to be on for the end of October.  It all happened in about a week!

Lesson 3: Taking care of myself. I really had to pay attention to this since I was pushing myself out of my comfort zone.  The day before the show, I was starting to get anxious so I made sure to go to yoga.  After class I felt so much more grounded, focused and ready to prep for the next day.  The day of the show, while I was in the green room, there was a moment where this introvert/HSP got too overwhelmed by all the talking that I had to go find a quiet spot to just sit and breathe.  It definitely helped me center right before going on.

Lots of great learnings here from a truly wonderful experience!  I loved being on the show and getting to share tips and ideas about something I’m passionate about.  I hope to be on again and to also venture into other shows, too…  like Martha and Oprah, of course!  I’m including that in my next future letter to myself and on my new Right-Brain Business Plan!

Lady Launchers Shine!

Another Oakland Incubator group graduated this week!  We had an amazing group of nine extremely resourceful women.  I was blown away by the level of support in the circle and the actions they took for themselves and each other.  My favorite part of the Incubator is when the women light up as they claim their visions more powerfully each week.  How fitting that these bright women gathered in Dr. Liz Dobbin’s beautiful space called Shine Chiropractic because boy did these ladies shine!

Blogging Brilliance

Thanks to social media expert Britt Bravo for coming to our Oakland Ladies Who Launch meeting last night to speak about blogging.  Britt shared with us some cool tools and tips for starting and enhancing our blogs.   Based on her presentation, I finally added an RSS feed link and e-mail subscription link to my blog!  Thanks, Britt!  Please check out Britt’s inspiring and informative blog Have fun. Do good.

Speaking of blogging, via twitter this morning, I heard of this exciting contest on Martha Stewart’s blogComment on her post and Martha may feature you on her blog!  Way cool!  And today’s Martha show was all about blogging and the studio audience was filled with bloggers blogging away on their laptops.  Just brilliant!  I loved seeing the creator of cute overload, too.

If you’re wanting to learn more about blogging and social media, I’ve included some great resources below.

The Ladies Who Launch site has several articles on social media and blogging:

The Pink Heel’s blog has a great overview of social media.

And here is some great information about twitter (a way of “micro-blogging”):

I’d love to hear what helpful resources or tips you’ve found on blogging or social networking.  Please share them in the comments!

Happy blogging!

Be Your Own Boss Recap

Last Saturday was the annual Bay Area Ladies Who Launch Be Your Own Boss event.  Imagine a full day of inspiring and informative speakers, a gorgeous, sunny space filled to the brim with 350 vibrant, creative women and a buzz of entrepreneurial energy.  It took me several days to recuperate from all the excitement (hence not getting this post up until a week later!).

Kate and I shared a table to showcase our work (her design portfolio, my coaching business and the products she designed for me – The Right-Brain Business Plan e-book and my new Unfolding Your Life Vision kit).  Thanks to lady launcher photographer Monica Michelle for the beautiful photo of us above!

Had lots of late nights getting ready!  Above is a peek at the assembly line I had going for my new Unfolding Your Life Vision kit.  (BTW, kits will be available for sale online soon!).

We were amazed at how elegantly our table came together.  It helps that we have similar tastes!

Our lovely friend Hannah lent us a hand.  How awesome to have extra support that day!  Hannah and Kate incubated with me back in March.  It’s fun when friendships blossom out of the incubator in addition to all the other launching goodness!

Some highlights from the day were seeing so many familiar smiling faces, meeting many new launching ladies and getting such great response to my kits!  I enjoyed the panel about social media which basically reinforced my facebook and twitter habit.  The Real Good Project fed us a delicious, organic gourmet lunch.  My salmon salad sandwich was out of this world!  Oh, and my 10-minute chair massage was heaven-sent after being on my feet all day.

What I appreciated most at the event was experiencing how jazzed everyone gets about being their own boss.  How entrepreneurial women thrive on connections, community and creativity.  How together we are changing the way business is done.

Kate, Hannah and I topped off the night with a celebratory dinner at A Cote in Rockridge.  We were exhausted, famished and delirious from the record heat but that meal was incredible!  Great food and great company.  Cheers to being your own boss!

Be Your Own Boss!

I’ve been a busy bee the past couple of weeks gearing up for our big annual Ladies Who Launch Be Your Own Boss event this Saturday. It’s going to be an exciting and inspiring day. I look forward to hearing all the speakers including Kathy Freston author of Quantum Wellness and Gina Bianchini founder of ning.com.  I’m sure I’ll learn a lot from these amazing women entrepreneurs.

I’m thrilled that at the event I’ll be unveiling my new Unfolding Your Life Vision Kit! It includes inspiration, instructions and supplies to create your own pocket-sized vision board.  I’ve had this idea for five years, so it’s cool to see it finally coming to fruition! Lots more prep to do on this, so back to work!  If you’re in the Bay Area, hope to see you at the event on Saturday.

The Power of Creative Cohorts

My friend and fellow Lady Launcher, Cami Walker, was visiting from L.A. this weekend and recently asked me to lead a Right-Brain Business Plan workshop so she could make one for her new creative venture. We gathered seven other participants for a fun afternoon of visioning and planning. I wrote a bit about the workshop here.

I originally planned to launch this workshop in the fall. What I love, though, about having creative cohorts is that they are there to help spur things along! If I were just plodding along by myself, I would’ve sat on this idea for a few more months. I might have worked on the concept here and there and eventually set a date later this year.

But with a simple nudge and within just a few weeks, I’ve gained tons of momentum. By putting myself out there (perhaps earlier that I had originally planned), I now have new insights on how to improve the workshop and also confirmation of some other ideas I was tossing around. This weekend was a great reminder that creating is an iterative process. A process that starts with putting something out there! It sure helps to have a friendly catalyst nearby who can help propel you forward.

Lessons from Public Speaking


“Here’s your opening line…” Ahhh, the magic words of Patricia Fripp, award-winnning speaker and speech coach. On Thursday and Friday, 10 of us lady launchers participated in Fripp’s Public Speaking School. Fripp dazzled us with her lightening-speed ability to whip out compelling opening lines, her laser-focused on-the-spot speech editing and her dynamic and humorous storytelling. If you’re considering public speaking, I highly recommend taking one of her courses (or even getting any of her CDs or DVDs). I walked away with so many nuggets on structure, content and delivery that I’ll apply to anything from a 3-min. blurb to an hour-long talk.

Despite being a quiet kid, in junior high I competed in mock trial and high school I competed in speech, mostly in “DI” (dramatic interpretation). I got a kick out of portraying twisted, emotional yet very strong women (hmmm, what does that say about me?!). My senior year, I even went to the State and National Championships.

Although I got pretty comfortable reciting scenes from plays and books in front of large audiences, I was petrified of doing anything that required my own content or thinking on my feet. I avoided original oratory, debate, impromtu and the like. What did I have to say? Would anyone even care? What if I sounded stupid? Of course, those thoughts still cross my mind as I blog, write my book, give talks or facilitate groups. The difference now is I just do it anyway.

When I reflect on my years in speech and the mentoring from my speech coach Mr. Fong I’m very grateful for the experience. There are many lessons that help me in my personal and professional life. Be BIG. Be prepared. Practice, practice, practice. Focus and breathe. Get feedback. Practice more. Dress for success. Believe in myself. And so much more.

Now, after working with Patricia Fripp I have new “Frippisms” to add to my lessons from public speaking. And I’m excited that we lady launchers can support each other in preparing for and giving our presentations! That makes the daunting process of public speaking that much easier.

Love is in the Air


Last night was Tamiko and Moses’ lovely wedding at Cafe Leila. Tamiko incubated earlier this year and got lots of support and ideas from her fellow lady launchers for making their commitment ceremony uniquely theirs. What a treat it was to be a part of visioning their special day and then seeing it come to life so beautifully as they honored the blend of their richly diverse histories and heritage.


Lady launchers Kate, me, Hannah, Maria and Susan. We were all so touched by the story of how Tamiko and Moses met and how their relationship has deepened over the last several years. (There were many ohhs and ahhs coming from our table during their speeches!).


I made a card for them out of a gocco print by stamping the Chinese character for love in the corner. Giving handmade gifts and cards is one of my favorite things!

Give a Little Bit

Visit 29-Day Giving Challenge

Cami Walker of Creative Urge recently kicked off a new and meaningful challenge – the 29-Day Giving Challenge. Cami is uber-talented and also highly spiritual and intuitive. And her own story is really inspiring. Find out what spurred her to create and share this challenge. I began the challenge on 3/31. Here’s a recap of my first five days of the giving challenge:

  • Day One: Gifted one of my handmade Wish Boxes to Kate Prentiss for doing such an awesome job on my soon-to-be-ready brochure!
  • Day Two: My friend Fiona from London is in town. I picked her up from the airport and she crashed at my place before going to a training session in the morning. (So excited that I get to hang out with her Saturday afternoon when she’s done! And in London in a few weeks when I go to visit her!)
  • Day Three: Did a volunteer coaching call with Yessica, a client from C.E.O. Women.
  • Day Four: Volunteered my voice for Aurora Medina’s Plenty of Money meditation.
  • Day Five: Donated to Alison Ekizian’s AIDS Ride campaign.

In my work I feel like I naturally give a lot – a lot of support, encouragement, intense listening, resources, etc. I also love giving gifts, especially handmade ones. And I volunteer my time and money to causes that are important to me. This challenge, though, is helping me to expand what it means to give. And I hate to admit it but I’m noticing where I have resistance to giving (usually when it’s “inconvenient” for me or if I’m feeling strapped financially – see last post). What I love about the message from Cami and this challenge is that truly giving helps us get out of our own “stuff” and shifts the energy outward. Yes, there are times when it’s good to give to ourselves (I took a self-care day for myself today) AND that doesn’t mean we still can’t give to others. It’s not an either/or. I’m realizing I make it an either/or when I’ve pushed myself to the limit and I don’t have reserves left. So, my challenge to myself is to continue giving in some form even when I feel like I need to retreat. As Cami suggests, you can give anything – a material object, time, money, a kind word, a smile or even just positive energy. The key is to do it with intention. I look forward to discovering more insights during this challenge. And I’m excited to get creative about how else I can give.

Cami’s goal is to inspire at least 2,000 people to commit to the 29-Day Giving Challenge by 9/29/08. Won’t you join us? Spreading the word is one way to give!

P.S. – here’s a theme song to get you on your way… “Give a Little Bit” by the Goo Goo Dolls.

Becoming a Money Magician


I recently completed a money circle with money coach and fellow Lady Launcher Aurora Medina (whom I describe as Suze Orman meets Shakira!). My relationship with money has had its ups and downs, so it was helpful to spend time reflecting on how I am with my finances and how I want to be.

During my years of climbing the corporate ladder, I made a good salary and never worried about price tags or balancing my checkbook. I spent way too much on clothes (well, I had to make use of my Gap, Banana and Old Navy discount, now didn’t I?!!). However, I did do some of the right things – tucked money away in a 401(k), set up monthly automatic transfers into my savings account, invested in mutual funds, etc. – without ever really paying much attention.

Now that I work for myself, I am much more aware of my cash flow and finances. However, this doesn’t mean that I like dealing with it and avoidance blocks more abundance from flowing into my life. So, participating in this money circle was a first step in being more conscious about how I am around money.

Aurora had us create money vision boards. Mine depicts the peace and relaxation I feel when I’m confident about money. The phrase “business is booming” is juxtaposed by a calm woman just chillin’ in nature. That image reminds me that I don’t need to run myself ragged to make a living. That in fact, I’m more effective when I’m grounded and centered. I also have images of material things I want. Top of the list would be re-doing our kitchen and getting a dishwasher! Regular vacations would be nice, too.


Another assignment was to create a money beliefs box. Well, given my dream boxes, you know I was all over this one! In fact, I created mine during the workshop I led last Friday. I found a quote from supermodel Linda Evangelista that says, “I don’t wake up for less than $10,00 a day.” How’s that for raising the bar?! I also have “say your worth it” which is a big one for me to step into, too.


Inside the box, I wrote my new beliefs about money on little slips of green paper. Some of them include:

  • I deal with my finances easily and effortlessly.
  • I’m doing what I love and am good at and I easily pay others to handle the rest.
  • I indulge in self-care luxuries knowing I can totally afford them.
  • I attract abundance and live abundantly.
  • I make my money work for me.
  • It’s easy for me to make more money in less time.
  • Brian and I have a sound financial plan for now and for the future.
  • I make generous contributions to worthy causes on a regular basis.

The other nugget I got from the money circle was identifying my money type. I scored high on Money Magician, but because my financial life is not yet where I want it to be, we looked at the next highest which were the Martyr and the Artist/Creator. I also have strong Warrior energy which is great to tap into. I will be paying attention to which of my types is making decisions about my money and how that might be hurting or helping me. The ultimate goal is to become the Money Magician who can easily manifest inner wealth spiritually and outer wealth in the material world. Find out what you are by taking the quiz.

I’ve also ordered two books that Aurora recommended: Money Magic by Deborah L. Price and Prince Charming Isn’t Coming by Barbara Stanny. I’m looking forward to reading them.

What is your relationship with money? What are your beliefs about money and how are they serving you? What does inner and outer wealth look like to you?