What we do here:

Work on our stuff. Dissolve stuck. Play. Experiment. Rewrite patterns. We take sometimes-heavy things* and we make them more fun, playful, manageable.

I also write about my conversations with walls and monsters, and what it's like to work on a pirate ship. Good times.

* Sometimes-heavy things include: mindfulness and presence, pain and trauma, business-growing, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity


Standing in my strength. A wish.

very personal adsPersonal ads. They’re … personal!

I write a Very Personal Ad each week to practice wanting, and get clarity about my desires. The point isn’t getting my wish (though cool things have emerged from wishing), the point is learning about my relationship with what I want, and accessing the qualities. Wanting can be hard, it is easy to feel conflicted about it, and the reasons for that make this a surprisingly subversive practice…

Here we are. Week 320 of wishing. Welcome. Let’s do this. ♡

Standing in my strength.

I want to stand in my strength.

I want to do this cleanly, easily, powerfully. With presence.

And, when appropriate, with warmth.

I want to stand in my strength, fully self-contained, at ease in myself and at home in the world. Conscious and free.

Like the most nonchalant panther. Like the steadiest and most loving tree.

How’s that for a big wish.

How did I get here?

This past week has been all about challenges to my boundaries, which you could also call opportunities to stand up for myself, speak my truth, and adjust my crown.

I was sitting on my couch yesterday, feeling both frustrated about how not fun this is, and baffled by why all of a sudden I’m being put through sovereignty bootcamp, because I didn’t remember signing up for this.

Except it’s on the calendar.

In that moment, I looked up at the Fluent Self calendar on the wall and realized this is actually the perfect time to be learning and re-learning these skills.

This the last week of the month of Trust More, and when I flipped the page to peek at what’s next, here’s what I found in September, the month we’re about to enter:

Stand in My Strength More. Superpower: Fearless Intentional Choosing.

Yeah! Oh, and the image on the calendar is a crown.

As my brother says, “I stand by my “wow!”.

So. Here we are.

And how convenient is it that the thing I want most right now also just so happens to be what past-me put on the calendar for me.

This is the transition time. The bridge.

So this is a wish about easing into standing in my strength. It is a wish to learn more about the relationship between trust and sovereignty.

It is a wish about taking everything I have been learning about trust — trusting my instincts, trusting the ground, trusting my ability to advocate for myself, trusting my ability to hear and receive my decisions — and letting that be the new foundation for standing in my strength.

What does it mean to stand in my strength?

To be like a bridge, to be able to sway and withstand earthquakes and high winds through being able to move with them instead of tensing against them.

In a way, it’s like TRE (Trauma/Tension Releasing Exercises). Trembling and tremoring your way into stability. Seems so counter-intuitive, but when you can release, you are more stable.

So this standing in my strength is not locked down. It is soft and pliable. It is aikido. It is the essence of be like water.

It is grounding and freedom. It is grounded freedom.

What do I know about standing in my strength?

I have seemingly endless Ludicrous Fear Popcorn and monsters about this.

So let’s just name the fears, and ask Wisest Me to remind me of the truth here, we can process this more later. I am feeling afraid that if I stand in my strength…

What am I afraid might happen?

Fear: Maybe people will misunderstand me and be hurt and offended.

Wisest-Me: Maybe. Not likely, because staying grounded will help us with clear, clean, compassionate communication.

If they do misunderstand though, that’s their stuff. It’s not our job to protect other people from feeling their feelings, it’s their job to work through their reactions. Our job is to be a clear, resonant bell, a conduit for source: to fill up on and radiate love and steady truth. It is safe for us to trust our kindness and good intentions.

Fear: Maybe people will want to test me all the time.

Wisest-Me: Right now they’re doing that anyway. And maybe when we are standing in our strength, they’ll realize they’re wasting their time.

Fear: Maybe people will envy me or hate me.

Wisest-Me: Maybe. Again, their stuff. Not ours. And: maybe you’ll be a beacon for them, bringing more light to all the ways it is possible to be in the world, maybe you’re blazing a trail that lots of amazing people are looking for.

Fear: I don’t really know what I’m afraid of, I just have this uh oh feeling about being that powerful and glowing that hard.

Wisest-Me: Mmmmm. That sounds very reasonable and understandable, given that our entire culture has socialized us to turn down our glow, because it doesn’t serve the structures/powers that be to have people being true to themselves.

That’s why investigating our wishes and getting close to desire is such a deeply subversive practice. This vague fear of “this is something we shouldn’t be doing” is actually Internalized Oppression.

So let’s remember that internal decolonizing is hard work. Just doing things like owning a company and being the one in charge and writing wishes, all of this is already going against our lineage, training, the brain-washing of our entire energy system, everything we’ve been told in life.

How do I feel thinking about this?

Stronger, actually.

What will help me with this wish.

I think all the things I am already doing to support the August mission of Trust More.

Rest, taking exquisite care of myself, listening to my small desires, creating safety for myself, advocating for what I need, especially when it comes to how I learn.

More pausing. More listening. Reducing input. Reducing visual noise.

Reflecting on my day and noticing what is upsetting me, if I am stirring any stew pots and making stew I don’t need. These are places that need me in my strength.

Asking for help, and calling on allies in all forms. For example, people in the dance community who also care about changing the culture. And also allies in the forms of qualities, superpowers, the secret salves that we invent here.

What else is this wish about?

It’s time to learn how to unapologetically take up space. It’s time to be way more at home in myself.

This is the intersection of Trust More and Stand In My Strength More.

Anything else important here?

Anything can be a bridge. And I live in a city whose nickname is Bridgetown. I want to keep noticing all the support there is in crossings!


You are invited to share many !!!!!! about my wishes and realizations here, to share anything sparked for you while reading, to say “oh wow, what beautiful wishes” to me and to each other, to wish your own wishes.

I will also take all forms of EXCITEMENT and GLADNESS for this particular wish, and also clues if you have any, or good wishes if you don’t!


I am sitting in a favorite cafe that I haven’t visited in a year and a half, because it is the regular neighborhood cafe of my ex’s sister and her wife, and I don’t want to run into the ex or to be in a situation where I need to engage with that.

But it is a favorite place, and it’s where I want to be, and all week I have been working with the themes of Taking Up Space and insisting on supportive environments for me.

And this space is full of comfort and full of clues — in the name which is about both trees and homes, in the music playing, in the beautiful art (yes, watercolors of bridges), in the warm smiles that are here for me.

And I am thinking about [birds and trees], and how Portland, a place I have extremely mixed feelings about, is the city of trees, and also the city best known for Put A Bird On It. And how it is a port for sailing and it is land for landing.

It is good to be here right now.

May I always be able to say that about wherever I am, and if it’s not true, may I stand in my strength and hear the call of my best exit.

What does Slightly Future Me have to say?

Ze: How perfect that the superpower of August is Wildly Confident, Wonderfully Tranquil, which turned out to be the secret to being Beautifully Anchored, and now that is what allows us to stand in our strength. Look at all the wonder that surrounds us. Endless overflowing gratitude for life! And for you, and this process which is bringing you towards me. Process is our bridge.
Me: Haha! Wishing is our bridge! Our wish-bridge! I am so excited to meet you and be you.
Ze: I know! Me too! Our whole collective of wiser selves who already know how to stand in strength are right here with me, we are all cheering you on and glowing courage/encouragement for you. Heart-heart!


The logo of the brand of coffee sold at this tree cafe has a bird on it.

The superpower of Wildly Confident, Wonderfully Tranquil.

August - Trust MoreJune was RELEASE MORE, with the superpower of I am stronger than I think, and July was LOVE MORE, because this is a badass way to live.

Now we are in TRUST MORE, with the superpower of Wildly Confident, Wonderfully Tranquil.

Trust is how I am going to find my way into strength, and standing in it.

Trusting that I have this strength already, trusting that I know how to stand in it, trusting that the world can handle me in this beautiful state, trusting that there is room for me, trusting that doing this benefits everyone I encounter. May it be so.

Things I find helpful for intentions and wishes…

Nap, dance, write, play, labyrinths. Get quiet. Sweet pauses, yes to red lights and purple pills, thank you to the broken pots. Costume changes. Skip stones. Body first. Thank you in advance. Eight breaths in eight directions:

Adventure. Rest. Horizons. Security. Passion. Sweetness. Clarity. Presence.

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

So. Last week aka Round house… ohmygod.

First I realized that I’d been unintentionally proxying two other situations in my life, without even realizing it. Reading what I had written about round houses showed me that I already had received my answers to situations I thought were baffling me.

Then a series of coincidences led me to search for a small unmarked studio. It was tiny and all white and reminded me of Berlin, and taking up most of the space was a geodesic dome. A round house!

How’s that for a clue? You can build a circle inside of a square!

My mission for that day had been Oh How Big I Glow, and so it is very interesting that I ended up having an aura photo taken. Do you see? My aura is a round house. I had a photograph of my round house — my own personal always-round always-house round house — inside of a round house!

Oh, and also a possibility opened up vis a vis an actual tiny round house for me. Wow.

Thank you, process of writing about wishes. Thank you, me who asked.

Ongoing Wishes. Everything is easier than I thought, and look, miracles everywhere. Ha, this doesn’t require my input! My business is thriving happily without me. I think like a dancer. It’s so perfect it turned out like this. Past me is a GENIUS. I have what I need, and appreciate it. I am fearless and confident. I state my preferences clearly, calmly and easily, no big deal. I claim my superpowers. Love more. Trust more. Release more. Receive more.

Keep me company! Or just say hi!

You can deposit wishes, gwishes, personal ads, superpowers, qualities, seeds, secret agent code, whatever you’d like, there’s no right way! Updates on past experiments are welcome too, as is sharing anything sparked for you.

Comment culture: This is safe space for creative exploration. We are on vacation from care-taking and advice-giving. We are here to play and throw things in the pot! With amnesty. Leave a wish any time you want.

Here’s how we meet each other’s wishes: Oh, wow. What beautiful wishes.


The Chicken of let’s all say it together.

Friday chicken

Reflecting on both the hard and the good parts in the week that was…

It is Friday Saturday and we are here.

{a breath for being here when we get here.}

Thank you, week.

This is the 369th week in a row that we are chickening here together. Pretty great.

Or “checking in”, if you prefer to enunciate.

What worked this week?

No more deciding!

I’ve stopped using the word DECIDE as a verb, and completed the transition to “I heard and received my decision” instead of “I decided X”.

This reminds me of what Bryan says about yoga: You don’t need to force your body to go anywhere or do anything, you just honor the decisions that are already being made.

I believe in this, I feel the truth of it in the steadiest place of my heart, and yet my language and actions don’t reflect it.

This week I rephrased, even in my head.

I didn’t decide to give myself twenty luxurious minutes in bed in the morning to just languidly stretch and yawn while listening to music. I received the intel from my body that this was necessary, I heard the decision.

I didn’t decide that I don’t have a yes to Kentucky with my lover, even though I feel joyful when I imagine disappearing with the beautiful boy into the spectacular autumn leaves for a couple months.

I heard and received that right now what I want is to do the simplest, easiest thing which is to stay here (with some upgrades), and my whole body relaxed, and then a Perfect Simple Solution just emerged from that.

Next time I might…

Reduce input, and then reduce it even more. NO INPUT!

And by “no input” I mean, I looked something up online because I wanted to know about it, and at the bottom of the page was a promotional link for another article, with the most triggering title, and I wish I hadn’t seen it because my mind has already internalized an image of this horrific thing, and I can’t stop thinking about it.

Here’s to this particular form of LESS.

And the title of my upcoming Biopic if it were based on this week…

For The First Time In My Life I Can Feel My Feet! All The Time! The Havi Brooks Story.

If you feel drawn to leave comments on aspects of my week, I will take love, hearts, breaths, pebbles, I do not need advice or cheering up, though presence and sweetness are appreciated. Hearts or pebbles are great if you don’t know what to say, often I don’t know what to say either so we’re in the same boat.

Eight breaths for the hard, challenging and mysterious.

  1. Oh, I cried on the bus, which is always awesome. This may also have happened a few different times. A breath for big feelings.
  2. A number of small incidents of unwanted touching. Not the scary kind, thank god. And I handled it well. But the kind that, while not intended to cause harm, trick my body into thinking I’m dealing with a predator, and then panicked-me finds it difficult to retrieve (or remember the existence of) my buffer phrases and protocols. A man touched my hair on the dance floor while saying he liked my haircut, possibly because he mistakenly thought I am deaf and that I couldn’t understand what he was saying? I don’t care. NO! Another man, trying to learn a hip catch move and probably not ready for an intermediate class, got my butt instead. NO! I get it, leading is hard, and still: NO! Similar thing in the waltz lesson. NO! Guy next to me on the bus who poked me in the ribs to get my attention. NO! Let’s all say it together, Arrested-Development-style: No touching. These people all need to read this book, which I sincerely wish existed so I could hand out copies of it. And possibly also this facetious guide to female body language, though I am not sure they’d get it. A breath for deep roots, radiantly powerful boundaries and for trusting my strong clear no, and for No Touching.
  3. Remember when the initials AF could have meant anything, and it was a grand adventure? That is a fantastic post with useful self-fluency tools, everyone go re-read it! Anyway, I’m pretty sure right now, AF is all about Adrenal Fatigue. My lover is AF AF, and I am minorly AF-ing, and there’s big healing to be done. A breath for all the superpowers of Taking Exquisite Care of Myself.
  4. Speaking of people not taking care of themselves, my lover is in a very bad way, and I have been putting up with all kinds of troublesome things (the least of which being that while we currently live in the same city, we only were able to see each other once this week, because his work crises take precedence over food, sleep and love) as just a fact of life because he’s a sovereign being and an adult, and it’s his life and body to ruin if he wants to. Except if I were oh, let’s say a goat herder, raising a baby goat, I wouldn’t agree to this situation, because my sweet, precious tiny goat is worthy and deserving of healthy caretakers. So here’s a mystery: why is it that I don’t believe I am worthy and deserving of people in my life who respect their health and the bodies which house them, and respect me through how they take care of themselves. Clarification #1: I am not about to raise a goat. Clarification #2: I am not advocating telling people what they can eat or how to live, that’s controlling and potentially abusive. Okay, I could keep writing clarifications all day so let’s give my well-meaning monsters a safe room where they can worry about people misunderstanding what I mean, and let’s take a breath. A breath for change, and for glowing sweetness, compassion, understanding and love for him while not neglecting, sacrificing or forgetting about my own needs.
  5. Oh, and speaking of breathing: Portland air quality is now officially in the “unhealthy for sensitive groups” range, thanks to all the wildfires. This is rough on baby goats and older people and asthmatics and the homeless, and also on HSPs like me. Portland Breathing Situation: fake band of the week? A breath of compassionate for everyone here and especially for everyone in range of the fires, may there be safety (and air) for all who need.
  6. This comedy sketch accurately sums up for me what Operation True Yes feels like, obviously without an impending wedding or needing to acquire flowers, just the feeling of learning about yes in this intense Shmita year. A breath for deep trust, and for loving my way into true yes.
  7. Have you been following the HUMANS OF NEW YORK trip to Pakistan, and the story of Syeda Ghulam Fatima who rescues people in bonded labour and her organization? All week I have been thinking about this and other distressing, painful, awful situations in the world, and how the hospital refused to treat her after she was shot (oh, politics and power), and how important it is for us to know about things we don’t know about, and how much it hurts to know these things, and the desire to help and the desire to find the right ways, and the desire to always hold the full truth of knowing that places and people are complicated, and what we hear of them from afar is only one thread in a tapestry. A breath for compassionate witnessing and for all the scattered particles of light.
  8. Inhale, exhale. May all misunderstandings and distortions, internal and external, dissolve in love if not in laughter. Goodbye (and thank you), mysteries and hard moments of this week. May I choose to trust-more love-more release-more receive-more.

Eight breaths of good, reassuring, delight-filled.

  1. This was a beautiful week, full of beautiful things. I feel more grounded, present, stable, at ease in my body and in my life than I had ever imagined possible. A breath of deep appreciation and gratitude
  2. I handled all the hard things in new ways! I gave the guy at the dance a very firm, clear lesson in anatomy, all without speaking. I was able to dance with someone else in a way that prevented him from doing the thing I didn’t like, without giving up my frame or sacrificing the grace of the dance. I was gracious and firm and I held my ground without tensing, and all of this is new. A breath for sovereignty, new patterns and wearing my crown.
  3. I held a steady, clear, honest conversation with my lover about all the things that are not okay, and it was easy and full of affection. A breath for Radical Sovereignty, and for how sweet it is to be in a connection with someone who has the self-fluency skill of Not Making Shit About Them, and the ability to both listen and respond from love. And a breath of thank you, because life is so much easier when it’s not just me bringing that to the table.
  4. My lover and I went dancing and smiled our faces off, then fell asleep in a tangle of sweetness. A breath for how we are just hot sweet magic.
  5. A switch flipped in my mind this week, and I am no longer concerned about either of the situations I was hugely upset-flustered-anxious-shaken-destroyed about last week! The first of these now just seems like the treasure of Redirection: I get to do something new. As for the other, I’m fine. However much time I get to enjoy [thing I don't want to end] is treasure, and if/when it ends for [reasons], I will be okay. This switch-flipping also changed the energy dynamic in everything else, and I feel easy and peaceful, and slightly astonished. I’ll take it! A breath of heart-joy for this glorious steadiness.
  6. The above wonderful thing is related to all the TRE I have been doing, which is also responsible for how I am sleeping like a baby puppy, and, best of all, I CAN FEEL MY FEET. All the time. Normally when I get tired, stressed, or triggered in any way, I disassociate and lose my ability to feel the lower half of my body, unless parts of it are in pain and then all I feel is pain. This also means that while dancing I lose my axis or footing a lot. I can always fix it quickly because my body has years of yoga, shiva spirals and other balance training. But now I’m not losing my ground to begin with, because I can feel my body all the time. A breath for this beautiful miracle.
  7. DANCE! Oh! I had the most wonderful time at Waltz Brunch. Then Flash Waltz in the rose garden, one of the most magical things I have experienced. I led three waltzes! I went west coast swing dancing and didn’t go into my stuff. I practiced at home and laughed when I made mistakes. Ohmygod. A breath for all this joy, and for palpable progress.
  8. Thankfulness. So much is good. Peaches and plums. Warm smiles. Overflowing with gratitude and appreciation, for everything in my life, and for all the magic beans I have been given. Trust. Pleasure. Everything is okay. Nothing is wrong, even when I think it is. Now is not then. All Timing Is Right Timing. Thankful for this grand adventure. A full breath of deep appreciation in my thank-you heart.

Wham booms, wisdom, superpowers, salve and FBOTW!

Operations completed. Wham boom!

Whoosh Ha Mastodon Boom is secret agent code meaning: this thing is done! Shortened to wham-boom.

Operation Trust Release Ease is the best thing ever. Still looking into Operations Alternative Shed and Calm Island. Decisions were received. I now award myself a hundred billion sparklepoints. Wham Boom.

Superpowers I had this week…

For the last three weeks I have been asking for the superpowers of Beautifully Anchored, Deeply Trusting, and, of course, I am a Powerful Slinky Very Relaxed Panther.

And they must have arrived (or were always here and have now been revealed) because I had them!

Powers I want.

More of the same, please. And the power of thinking of my body as precious expensive cargo that I treat with magnificent attentiveness and wonderful steadiness.

The Salve of RGW.

These invisible salves are distributed here by way of internet magic. Help yourself! Take it in a bath, as tea, a cocktail, whatever works for you. Not only is there enough salve, there are also enough ways to receive it.

RGW is something Marisa and I always say, it stands for Replenishing Glass of Water, which sounds very simple, and yet it is the secret cure for so many things.

The salve of RGW holds all the superpowers of intention, pauses and slowness, all the sweet red lights, shifting perspective, starting new, clearing out, flushing away, transporting, glowing, easing and releasing.

As soon as it touches your skin, you suddenly remember that you want to take care of yourself. Not out of guilt or regret; out of peacefulness. This salve mends broken connections, and helps with exits and with new beginnings.

Playing live at the meme beach house — the Fake Band of the Week!

My brother and I make up bands, which are all just one guy. The Meme Beach House is the venue.


This week’s band is from Chloe, it’s called Squashing Myself Needlessly. Their latest album is Out Of My Way. They play trombone covers of blues songs, and apparently it’s just one guy.

And the photo was taken in Lubbock, TX by Jesse! Thank you!

How was your week?

Come play in the comments. Share something from your week, take a breath, or just say hi! No rules, my format doesn’t have to be yours, we’ve been doing this every week for years now and there still isn’t a right way.

Everyone belongs. We let people have their own experience. We’re supportive and welcoming. We don’t give advice.

Wishing you a glorrrrrrrrrrrrious day, a restful weekend and a happy week to come.

Shabbat shalom.

It’s fine if it’s not Friday anymore. There’s complete chicken amnesty — jump in whenever you like. Blowing kisses to the Beloved Lurkers too!

p.s. If you want to express appreciation and/or go deeper into Self-Fluency…

Come practice Agency and be a secret agent (ha, agency pun!) of self-fluency, and support this blog and Shmita.

  • The marvelous Monster Manual gives you the sneaky ways I use to get my self-criticism to take a nap or join the circus or become my ally, so I can stay calm and take care of myself.
  • If you’d just like to express appreciation for concepts and qualities that live here, you can always contribute to Barrington’s Discretionary. (Explanation!)
  • And of course, love and support in the form of smiles, hearts, warmth, sharing posts, practicing what we do here: any and all of that is always appreciated!

A deep breath of love from my thank-you heart for everyone who reads. ❦