Year in Review: 2011

At the end of the year, I like to reflect on my milestones and learnings. Since 2008, I’ve done an Exploding Box as a visual representation of the year. It’s a fun way to commemorate the last twelve months. If you want to make your own, you can see me show examples and you can sign-up for instructions here.

There are also some other great ideas for reflection and intention setting in this Scoutie Girl post.

What I’m celebrating from 2011:


Personal Growth

  • Painted and worked my way through a couple of dips and valleys post-book launch intensity
  • Participated regularly in bi-weekly Nurture Huddle calls
  • Continued to participate in high-end mentoring program and working individually with my business coach
  • Worked with a personal coach in the summer
  • Participated in Art Every Day month for the fifth year
  • Journaled and read lots of books

Wealth & Abundance

  • Exceeded my financial goals for the year – broke 6-figures
  • Paid myself a few bonuses in addition to regular salary
  • Kept up with monthly managing the moola
  • Sold an old domain name = some nice unexpected cash!

Health & Wellbeing

  • Stopped eating refined sugar in May (huge for this lifelong sweet tooth)
  • Stopped eating gluten in October
  • Started doing Pilates more regularly to help with my back
  • Treated myself to getting a massage a few times (did a lot more of the short chair massages)
  • Enjoyed naps in my hammock and dips in the pool
  • Took most of September off
  • Continued to honor my self-care Fridays
  • Did intuitive painting at home


  • Brian and I went to Napa in the Spring
  • Celebrated our 10th year wedding anniversary in Maui!
  • My parents hosted a Book Party celebration for me with my friends and family
  • My twin nephews visited overnight and we had fun playing Xbox Kinect together
  • Had a family reunion where the elders shared stories of what it was like to be in Japanese internment camps during WW2
  • Went to the Getty Museum with my parents
  • Spent quality time with friends
  • Had really nourishing calls with friends from my Leadership tribe
  • 10th year of book club fun
  • Connected more in-person with local creative peeps
  • Met a lot of really cool people and online friends in-person at the World Domination Summit and got to stay with my college buddy Tsilli whom I hadn’t seen in years

Physical Environment

  • Got a new washer and dryer (who knew it would be so life changing?!)
  • Got a new refrigerator and got new storage containers
  • Cleared out inventory in garage and sent to Solamar to handle fulfillment (a big step for me! Yay!)
  • Had housecleaner come regularly
  • Created an intuitive painting station in my kitchen nook
  • Reorganized my office/creative space (added a chalk board and new white board, got a laptop stand)
  • Cleared out closet and donated lots of items to Goodwill

Fun & Recreation

  • Maui and Napa trips with Brian
  • Visited Leah in Boston (3rd year in a row!)
  • Went to Squam Art Workshops for 2nd year
  • Went on fun lunch dates with friends
  • Cuddling with our cute, old pooch Emmett
  • Spent time in nature
  • Worked in my art journal
  • Continued to take photos via Instagram and went on photowalks in SF and Emeryville
  • Two of my photos featured on book covers: Desire to Inspire by Christine Mason Miller and Creative Pilgrimages by Jenny Doh

My reflection questions:

What was the most exciting, heart-stirring thing that happened in your life and/or business this year?

One of the most exciting things that happened in my personal life this year was celebrating my 10th year anniversary with my husband in Maui. It was divine! In my business, the most exciting thing was having my book launch and seeing the positive impact its made on people’s lives all around the world.

How did you stretch yourself?

I stretched myself by putting myself out there in a bigger way with the launch of the book and in doing things like the video summit. I also stretched myself by deciding to work with a larger team to help me with my admin, fulfillment, and marketing. This was a much bigger investment than I’d had with my individual VA, but it was the right move to help grow my business. I also worked with a personal coach, something I hadn’t done in a few years.

What was your biggest learning?

One of the biggest challenges from this year was not anticipating the “postpartum depression” after my book launch. So my biggest learning is to build in lots of recovery time after I have really exciting or momentous milestones and to cut myself some slack. Dips and valleys are part of the learning process. Also, that I can build my confidence back up again by taking small steps.

What did you enjoy doing that you want to do more of?

I really enjoyed taking more quality vacation time with lots of pampering. I would love to do more of that next year!

What do you need to stop doing or let go of?

Stop feeling like I need to be perfect. Let go of my unreasonably high expectations. That will make room for more ease, flow, and grace.

What new opportunities are available for 2012 and beyond?

Continuing to grow my business in new and exciting ways, hosting another video summit, creating a mentoring program for creative entrepreneurs, developing new products and offerings, doing some home improvements, planning vacation time, spending quality time with Brian, friends, and family. And much more!

A Decade in Review

After completing my 2010 year-in-review exploding box, I also did an illustrated reflection on the past decade since so many significant things took place in the last 10 years. (Technically I drew 11 years, but it made sense for me to capture it this way and besides numbers are not my strong suit – haha!)

I moved up to San Francisco in 1998 and that really helped pave the way for some transformative decisions and events. When I look back on the first half of the decade a lot of it was about laying the foundation in my personal life – getting married (Brian and I had already been together seven years before we tied the knot), buying our house, and also embarking on my personal growth journey. I also focused intently on climbing the corporate ladder, even though I ultimately knew I wanted to do something else.

Getting coached, coaching other people, and participating in a leadership program  helped me to clarify my vision for the next half of the decade.

It was much easier to remember what happened from 2006 (that’s when I started this blog) since that’s when I took the leap from my corporate job to working for myself. In the second half of the decade, I gave myself permission to live my life in much more alignment with my values and passions. So many exciting and fulfilling things have unfolded since then. And I can’t wait for all of the amazing things to come in the new year and new decade.

Wishing you a fabulous 2011!!

Celebrating 2010: A Year in Review

With the year coming to a close, I took some time today to reflect back on 2010. In 2008 and 2009 I made exploding boxes to commemorate the year and this year I decided to make another one. It is such a fun keepsake!

What I’m celebrating from 2010:


Personal Growth

  • Participated regularly in bi-weekly Nurture Huddle calls
  • Invested in high-end mentoring program
  • Participated in Art Every Day month for the fourth year
  • Did morning journaling and read lots and lots of books

Wealth & Abundance

  • Hired a new, super awesome bookkeeper
  • Worked with bookkeeper to develop a budget and forecast
  • Kept up with monthly managing the moola
  • Put myself back on payroll for most of the year

Health & Wellbeing

  • Practiced yoga regularly
  • Attended step, body conditioning, and Zumba classes
  • Went swimming on hot, sunny days
  • Tried acupuncture for the first time
  • Treated myself to getting a massage every once in a while
  • Honored my self-care Fridays


Physical Environment

  • Moved from shared office to my own creative space
  • Had housecleaner come regularly
  • Organized dresser drawers

Fun & Recreation

My reflection questions:

What was the most exciting, heart-stirring thing that happened in your life and/or business this year?
I finished writing my book. It was a challenging, all-consuming, and super-exciting process. I can’t wait for it to come out in February.

What was your biggest learning?
I have extremely unreasonable expectations about what I can get done. I need to give myself a break. Really!

How did you stretch yourself?
Putting together the book definitely stretched me. I invested in a high-end mentoring program with Andrea J. Lee. This was a stretch financially and also mentally because it means I’m stepping into my business in a much bigger way which is a little scary and also super exciting.

What did you enjoy doing that you want to do more of?
More yoga, more time with friends, more nourishing self-care Fridays, more creative time.

What do you need to stop doing or let go of?
Feeling like I need to do everything (and getting down on myself when I’m not able to).

What new opportunities are available for 2011 and beyond?
Leveraging the book launch to expand my reach further and to grow my business more, developing new offerings for creative entrepreneurs, creating coaching programs, developing new products, speaking, having more free time, more fun collaborative projects with creative cohorts, a vacation with just me and Brian, and much more!

Celebrating 2009: A Year in Review Part 2

I guess you could say I’m a bit of a self-help geek considering my idea of a good time for ringing in the new year consists of paper, glue, and reflection instead of bubbly, confetti, or noise makers. I enjoyed finishing my year-in-review exploding box to commemorate 2009 and reflecting on my end-of-year inquiries as a follow-up to listing what I’m celebrating from the year.

What are you most proud of?

  • Setting the intention that I would land a book deal and sticking through the process even when it was challenging and disheartening.
  • Showing up fully right from the get-go at my Expressive Arts Teacher Training (especially in light of it being at the same location where I had a difficult time a few years before).
  • Trusting my creative flow.

What was your biggest learning?

  • Having fabulous, inspiring, and supportive creative cohorts is essential. Collaborating with the right people makes all the difference.
  • Valuable growth comes from failure. It’s part of the process.

How did you stretch yourself?

  • I hit the road a lot this year – attending the book expo, leading workshops, giving talks, and visiting friends.
  • Last year I got tons of great experience doing work through other groups and organizations, but this year I stretched myself by focusing on and growing my own body of work.

Who did you lean on for support?

  • I’m so very grateful for all the wonderful support I have from my husband. He provides me with lots of encouragement and he helps me in so many ways.
  • I don’t know where I’d be without my amazing book coach, Jan King. She helps me through every step of this publishing journey.
  • My mentor and intuitive painting teacher, the wise and generous Chris Zydel.
  • The Nurture Huddle.
  • My friends, family, and my fellow creative entrepreneurs.

How will you celebrate who you’ve become?

  • Doing my reflection exercises has been a meaningful way for me to celebrate. I’m also looking forward to doing more work in Leonie’s gorgeous 2010 Goddess Planner.
  • Tomorrow I’m going to go to a New Years Day yoga class. I know it will be a great way to kick off the new year.
  • Keep honoring my self-care Fridays and scheduling a massage for January.
  • Oh, and I just might buy myself a new pair of designer jeans!

I hope you take some time to reflect on your year. I loved seeing my fellow wishstudio columnist Shona Cole share her year-end celebration. Way to go!

Happy New Year! Wishing you a wonderful 2010!

Celebrating 2009 – A Year in Review

At the end of the year, I like to spend some time reflecting on what I learned and accomplished. First, I start making a list of all the things big and small that I’m celebrating. Then, I journal about what my big learnings were. I also enjoy doing something artsy and visual to commemorate the year, like the exploding box I made for 2008. For other creative ideas, check out my latest Musepreneur column on the wishstudio.

What I’m celebrating from 2009:


Personal Growth

Wealth & Abundance

  • Created a new illustrated worksheet, Your Life in Bloom.
  • Continued to make more passive income selling products.
  • Worked with a bookkeeper to help with monthly reconciliations and Quickbooks stuff.
  • Bought an original art piece from Leah at Blue Tree Art Gallery.

Health & Wellbeing


Physical Environment

  • Had housecleaner come regularly.
  • Organized my Unfolding Your Life Vision kit inventory in the garage and Brian cleared out a lot of the clutter in the garage, too. Yay!
  • Organized my craft area.
  • Got cracks in our stucco fixed so we won’t have any more leaks in the living room when it rains.
  • Finally put a new latch on our kitchen closet to keep Emmett out of the trash (well, actually Brian did this when I was at my wits end cleaning trash from the floor, thanks honey!). Also created a new system for our recycling because when Emmett couldn’t get into the trash can, he went for the recycling bin!

Fun & Recreation

  • Visited with friends in NY, Boston, and D.C. and had friends visit with me.
  • Met some new cool people online and in person.
  • Took a roadtrip with Leah, Melba, and Mindy to check out the Squam Art Fair.
  • Completed my year-long creative project, Kiss the Paper, with Kate and Molly.
  • Participated in Wreck This Journal and did my first vlogs.
  • Discovered new favorite art supplies.
  • Cuddled with my dog.

What are you celebrating from 2009? What acknowledgment will you give yourself?

Here’s to a rockin’ 2010! I’ve still got some year-in-review reflection to wrap up and then when I’m done, I’m excited to dive into Goddess Leonie’s delicious and dreamy 2010 Goddess Planner. These gorgeous and colorful pages are making me super excited about setting my intentions for the new year.

Celebrating ’08 and Clearing the Way for ’09

With 2009 just around the corner, I consciously cleared the clutter in my office to make room for wonderful things to come in the new year. (I also donated five bags to Goodwill last week!)

For the past few weeks, I’d been feeling burdened by lots of administrative obstacles in both my personal and professional life.  And boy did the mess on my desk show that. I couldn’t even work there!

Ah, it feels so good to have a functioning and inspiring workspace again!  I’m more focused and energized, which is a great way to kick off 2009.

Before jumping into the new year, though, I like to reflect on the past year.  I already did a visual year in review.  Taking the time to also write about 2008 helped me remember accomplishments both big and small that I want to celebrate as well.

As I reflect on the year, I come up with a title to capture the essence of what unfolded.  Last year was “My year of integration: When it all came together.”  This year was “My year of stepping out and being seen, speaking up and being heard,” which is based on my first happiness commandment.  For someone who is usually behind the scenes, this was definitely a stretch for me.  I challenged myself AND I had fun doing it!

My 2008 accomplishments:


Personal Growth

Health and Well-being

  • Found local yoga classes that I like and started to go regularly
  • Went for hikes in nature
  • Rediscovered my handstand in yoga
  • Went for swims on hot, sunny days
  • Ate lunch outside during the summer


  • Spent quality time with Brian, including a nice date to see the Frida exhibit
  • Relished in laughs and great food with my book club
  • Visited my family in LA three times
  • Spent time with friends and made new friends in real life and online

Wealth and Abundance

  • Participated in a money circle and created my ideal budget
  • Reached my financial goals for the year
  • Made passive income and created multiple revenue streams

Fun and Recreation

What did you celebrate in 2008?  What is the title of your year?

Wishing you all the best in 2009!

AEDM Day 29: An Explosive Year in Review

Most of today was spent completing my “year in review” project on my exploding box.  It ended up taking a lot longer than I anticipated, but it was great to spend time reflecting on all the exciting events and accomplishments that have transpired so far in 2008.

My moo cards were the perfect size to decorate the pages.

I even made a miniature brochure that unfolds just like the real one!

Wow, 2008 has really been an amazing year!  So many of the things that I had envisioned in my Right-Brain Business Plan last year have manifested.  I look forward to finishing up my year in review next month and to envisioning more for 2009!

The Year it all Came Together


In December, I like to have my coaching clients reflect on what they’ve accomplished throughout the year. It’s such a gift to set aside some time during the frenetic holiday season to actually honor everything you’ve manifested in the last 12 months.

After spending a few hours last Saturday journaling about my own learnings, discoveries, milestones and achievements in 2007, I was amazed at how so many different pieces of my life have flowed together in such meaningful ways. I looked back at some notes I had when I started working with my last coach after leaving my job and one of the things I wanted was more integration. I was tired of living a separate work life apart from the rest of my life.

I’m happy to say that I gave 2007 the title, “My Year of Integration: When it all came together!”

So many big things happened this year. Revamped my coaching brand, celebrated my one year of freedom, got interviewed for a book, started leading Incubators, led my second year of the CDB leadership program, got selected as a CTI Circle Coach, became certified as an Ashtanga yoga instructor and led dream box workshops at the studio, got my MBTI qualification, participated in Art Every Day Month, traveled with friends, started a creative playground to explore Expressive Arts Coaching. And so much more!

Given all the insights I gained from doing art every day last month, I picked up my watercolors and painted a mandala to represent all that has unfolded this year. I love having a visual reminder of this wonderful feeling of integration and of what has blossomed in 2007.