Thursday, August 27, 2015

the message of illness (or, what I learned from taking a selfie)

This week I got sick. I had all kinds of birthday plans, plus a lot of work to do, and instead the universe said, nope! You're going to stay in bed and do very little.

I have been struggling emotionally anyway, so this didn't really help. But then my Core Energetics practitioner suggested I "reframe." What could I learn from it? What do I need to let go of?

I pondered, I did some writing and meditating, and I had one idea come to me but wasn't sure if it was correct. There are a few dresses hanging in my hall closet - beautiful size 4 dresses that used to look amazing on me. Although I've let go of a lot of my everyday clothes from my anorexia days, it's harder to let go of these fancy dresses. I left them hanging in the closet.

Then yesterday after a few days of nothing but the inside of my bedroom, I started to go stir crazy. Feeling a teeny bit better, I drove to Malibu and got in the water, (which isn't very cold at the moment since this heat wave has been going on since, you know, THE BEGINNING OF TIME it feels like)

And I asked "what do I need to let go of?"

Still no answer. So I told the universe, whatever I need to let go of, please help me know it.

When I got out of the water, I received a text message from a friend who hasn't been in LA in a while, saying "I miss you!" I decided to take a beach selfie and send it. As I was trying to position myself in an "attractive" way, it hit me.

I NEED TO LET GO OF HATING MY BODY.

For as long as I can remember, I've hated my body and I've hated myself. I'm starting to realize that no matter what I accomplish, no matter how many people tell me it's amazing or wonderful, or that I am, or that I'm beautiful or sexy or gorgeous, I don't believe it and I don't love myself. I'm going to make 37 the year I go directly to the root of this problem - the trauma I experienced as a child. I've done a lot of healing up until now, but I haven't gone all the way.

Healing my childhood trauma will be my main focus from now until the day I wake up saying, "I am enough. Exactly as I am."

Friday, April 17, 2015

The world needs this message

As a performer, in the past I often sought opportunities to "show what I can do." I may not have recognized it or I may not have owned it, but there was an inherent selfishness to that way of operating.

Through the process of creating, performing and sharing my show, I've been learning another way.

"Afraid of Karma" is about healing generational karma: transforming the cycle of negativity through personal responsibility. And what I'm coming to see is that this show is not about me needing to be seen, or told that I am a good singer or a good actress.

I'm a messenger, and the world needs this message.  I believe that is why I have received more support for this project than for anything else I've ever done in my life.

106 people have already backed the "Afraid of Karma" campaign, and many more have shared it, come to see the show and told me they want to get on board. It feels good on a personal level because I am of service and I get to do what I love. It doesn't feel selfish because doing this project adds to the world instead of taking away from it. And from that place, I get to be even more expansive and generous. The world is full of infinite possibility and it's very exciting!

Would you like to join me in helping to end drunk driving and heal generational karma?

Monday, February 2, 2015

How do you treat a baby?

I recently gave birth to a beautiful baby.

I brought a story called "Afraid of Karma" into existence. It began with writing, recording and producing an album of indie rock electro-pop music, and then those songs became the skeleton of my solo show.

During the process, I wrestled with a lot of self-judgment. "I am not pretty enough. I am not thin enough. My voice isn't good enough. I'm not young enough." And after the first performance, I tumbled into a dark place, hating myself and my work, wanting to give up and even resenting the people who had helped me bring it into the world. (Sound familiar to any new moms?)

But once I got a little distance from the show and heard the objective feedback of audience members, I began to have a new understanding. I'd had an unconscious hope, which really was an unconscious demand, that the show make money. And since that didn't happen instantaneously, my mind told me that the show had been a failure.

In reality, the show became its own entity when I birthed it. And as its own entity, it's not my place to criticize it, bash it, belittle it or impose unreasonable demands on it as I often do to myself. (And why do I think it's ok to treat myself that way? That's a blogpost for another day!) Instead, as the show is an infant, it's actually my job to care for it, to nurture it, to feed it, to allow it to grow and evolve at its own pace and to let it guide me. That is how I would raise a child.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Resistance and Willingness

I've noticed something over the past few months - when I am in my willingness, in my surrender, good things happen. It can feel like the floor is going to drop out from under me, because I have been so invested in my own ego, my own little plans, my CONTROL over everything - I had just been so unfamiliar with surrender, it felt super uncomfortable at first!

But now that I am learning to trust my higher power and the experience of people who have walked this path before me, I am beginning to receive the gifts of willingness. Sometimes it means I have to (get to) do things I wasn't planning on doing. Like right now, I am driving for Uber and Lyft. Yes, me, in my beautiful BMW 328i, driving people around Los Angeles! But it's my way of energetically saying to the Universe, I am willing to do whatever it takes to support myself, to get out of my fear, out of my isolation. And now when I encounter resistance, whether it is from friends or situations, I can calmly sit with that and allow my higher power to guide me.

"Nothing is urgent" says my friend Karla, and the more I adopt that attitude, the easier it is for me to slow down, feel myself and set appropriate boundaries with others. I feel so calm compared to how I used to feel when I wanted to do it all, be the best, get ahead or whatever other mentalities I was in at any given moment. Now I know, and often experience, that if this little plan doesn't work out, there's probably something better that is going to happen. And even if there isn't, I am ok. I am here in the present moment, accepting reality as it is, flowing with the current of life, in joy, gratitude and peace.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Why is it so hard to meditate???

Everyone knows about meditation - most spiritual traditions believe it is essential, it often brings enlightenment or at least illuminates challenging issues, and yet, it can be really hard.

Right now, I meditate every day. But for years, I really struggled with meditation. I felt completely anxious and restless. My mind would race and I was extremely uncomfortable. Sometimes I would look at the timer and feel like scratching my skin off when less than a minute had gone by since the last time I checked. What changed?

I got out of my self-will. I stopped swimming upstream and started to listen to my guides (slash The Universe slash God.) Once I let go of wanting to do things "my way" or for my own selfish, contrived reasons, meditating became peaceful. These days, I welcome it, enjoy it and even crave it. Because not only does it feel good to just BE without needing to do, meditation actually gives me messages, opens the space for me to receive guidance. I couldn't receive that wise guidance when I was running around trying to do everything my way, to get validation from the opinions of others, to win, or whatever other hyper, crazy motives I had. I was blocking those messages with my self-will, and therefore meditation was pure discomfort. I had to surrender to the flow of the universe for things to start to make sense and be easy.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Showing up for what is

I'm on a spiritual path. I mean, fuck - I changed my name to Harmony!

What is a spiritual path? Well, first of all, it's a path, not one single place to stop and stay. So it's constantly evolving and what it is for me today is not what it was 6 months or a year ago, and I'm sure it will look different in the future.

That being said, my current understanding of a spiritual path is that I get to show up for what is. Whatever is actually happening, whether it's what I "want" or not. I've created so many plans and ideals in my head, that often I have a tendency to resist what is actually coming to me. In her life-changing book, Loving What Is, Byron Katie talks about accepting reality exactly as it is. I have had major resistance to this concept because often what has really been going on in my life has looked so different from what I thought I wanted. But now that I am learning to flow with the Universe instead of trying to push the boulder of my self-will up the mountain, I see that any experience can help me.

Let's say someone is doing something I don't like. My choices are to blame them and make them wrong, and stay as I am (self-will) or to examine what this is really telling me and how I can show up with 100% self-responsibility. That does not mean allowing unacceptable behavior from this person. It means drawing my boundaries and then looking at how I might be either contributing to the situation or what the situation might be telling me about where I have room to grow. (This is why I believe it is so important to have people in my life who have integrity, that way I can ask them to mirror my blind spots without worrying that they might be manipulating me.)

It may sound crazy or ridiculous, but I am actually grateful to the people who push on me in various ways because then I get to see my blind spots. When I think someone is "doing something to me" I get to take a step back and see where I am involved. And if I am truly 0% involved, I get to say simply and directly to that person, "I don't like what you are doing and I will not accept that behavior from you." But most likely, I do have something to learn and there is some way that I can show up for my life with more self-responsibility, and that is a gift the Universe gives me.

Thanks for reading - I welcome your feedback on this post!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

How do you stop yourself from receiving?

Right now in my life, I am starting to get everything I have wished and hoped and worked for. Do I feel amazing? Yes. Do I also feel that creeping sense of overwhelm starting to bubble up, making me want to sabotage it all by crawling into bed or ruining it? Also yes.

Here's the thing. We beg the universe to give us success, love and money, but we often don't acknowledge that all of those things are ENERGY. If we can't allow intense energy to flow through us, we will stop it as soon as it starts to feel too intense.

I learned this very acutely a couple years ago when I booked my first national Prius commercial. We had a 2-week shoot on the Universal Studios lot. I knew the budget was in the multi-millions. People from wardrobe, makeup, hair, production, ad agency and many other departments knew who I was because they had my picture and name up on a board in their offices. The work I was doing was challenging physical work since the spot involved elements of acrobatics. I'm a former dancer and I had taken some trapeze classes, but there were other performers who had starred in Cirque du Soleil for years and one of them was even a gold-medal Olympic gymnast. It was the first audition I had gone on with my new manager, so I didn't want to disappoint him. I felt totally out of my league, even though the audition process had been rigorous and the director had specifically chosen me.

Basically, I was terrified that I would get fired, and I started to get into my head and worry that they'd made a mistake, that I had somehow fooled them and they didn't really want me on this huge project.

That first night when I got home, I got into a hot bath to ease the muscles that had started to ache after a hard day of being strapped into a harness 30 feet off the ground... and I cried. I realized I was overwhelmed, but I had a choice. Did I want to let this thing THAT I HAD ASKED FOR AND BEGGED FOR from the Universe to melt me down? Did I want to go back to square one and have my fears of not being enough confirmed?

No. I needed to allow. Allow the Universe to give to me.

So I knew I had to go to my grounding practices - my Radical Aliveness/Core Energetics techniques and my tantric meditation. I needed to allow my body to vibrate with this intense energy with my feet firmly planted on the ground. These are daily practices and they are as essential to prepare for the world stage I crave as vocal coaching or band rehearsal.

(If you're feeling like maybe you need some of this personal spiritual nourishment, I highly encourage you! I particularly love Angela Ai's artist workshops, Ann Bradney, Steve Maher, Kamana Hunter and Anna Timmermans.)
So, you've been in LA for a year or more - you found a place to live, you bought a car and you even signed with an agent.

Now what?

This blog is about taking your career to the next level - thinking big, thinking outside the box and working collaboratively to achieve success. Success in LA.