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We dissolve stuck and rewrite patterns. We apply radical playfulness to life (when we feel like it!), embarking on internal adventures (credo of Safety First). We have a fake band called Solved By Cake. We build invisible sanctuaries, invent words and worlds, breathe awe and wonder.

We are not impressed by monsters. Except when we are. We explore the connections between internal territories and surrounding environment to learn what marvelously supportive delicious space feels like, and how to take exquisite care of ourselves. We transform things.* We glow wild.**

* For example: Desire, fear, worry, pain-and-trauma, boundaries, that problematic word which rhymes with flaweductivity.

** Fair warning: Self-fluency has been known to lead to extremely subversive behavior, including treasuring yourself unconditionally, unapologetically taking up space, experiencing outrageously improbable levels of self-acceptance, and general rejoicing in aliveness.

 

Calling in Prowess. Come in, come in.

Door of Prowess

Hello, new year.

Hello, beloved place of gathering and breath, of sharing and clarity.

Interestingly, also the place I go to remember that All Timing Is Right Timing.

Hello, gate into Prowess, the quality I am calling in for January and beyond, for the rest of my life, something I want and need to be-and-glow, now more than ever.

And I mean on all levels; physically and emotionally, spiritually and politically, in my energy, in my presence, in every aspect of my being. Radiant, self-assured, unapologetic fully-embodied prowess.

Calm, clear and steady when a) that is the answer and b) I am able to embody these qualities.

But — and this is important, I also want to act without fear of my anger or my power either. I want to be able to react in a moment as is needed in that moment, to stand up for myself as needed, striking like a panther when that is needed.

Let’s back up. Let’s start from breath because that is what helps. (For me.)

Breathing for the new year.

I spent new year’s eve in the middle of nowhere.

I watched the outrageous sunset play out over the endless Nevada sky, and I made cocktails, and snuggled up with [lover] on the couch and watched Scorpion, falling asleep about fifteen minutes before midnight, and all this was the right way to slide into a new year.

It was quiet and enormously peaceful, and this was the door I needed in the moment I needed it, which I believe was part of my wish for solstice and the month of Light.

Yes, there is great wariness in this newness, with the disastrous political situation here eclipsing all the previous troubles (from the unsolved mysteries of sustainable online business to the unsolved mystery of where I want to be and what I want to do), but there is also a hopefulness and a sense of wonder that I had not anticipated.

Finding my way through.

I almost didn’t want to make wishes for the new year, even though usually that’s my favorite part.

In fact, this may have been the least enthused I have ever been about a new anything.

Because come on, it’s pretty bad when the only goal/wish you can come up with is basically please no nuclear war and may the country/world not be overrun by nazis, amen….

But then I started focusing on PROWESSS, asking what Prowess skill sets I need to be working on and developing to navigate this new year, and I discovered something marvelous.

I discovered that Prowess is my secret gate/pathway to Steadiness, Hopefulness, Mystery and other wild witchy wonders of life.

Beyond resolve.

I don’t do resolutions because how can I possibly commit future-me to anything without knowing what her yes is? She isn’t here yet, I can’t know what she will want or need, I only know that I love her and trust her unconditionally.

The only thing I can resolve is to be as intentional and present as I can, listening, awake to my yes, true to instinct and desire and what I believe in.

This year I translated “resolve” to mean something more like yes, I am here and I am serious about the things that are important to me.

Yes, I am serious about this year and serious about what I want! Even though, quite often actually, when I am serious about something, I am also the most playful with how I approach it.

Serious about welcoming prowess.

I am serious about boundaries and DNFW,
writing and dance,
getting off grid,
glowing my glow,
quitting most things,
generally being a total fucking badass and
my own personal hero of extreme self-treasuring.

I am serious about healing
and learning about ease,
I am serious about freedom and love,
sustenance and sustainability.

I am serious about giving myself real rest,
immersion in water,
being under the stars,
making sure I get enough iron and nourishment,
and doing all these things before I’m on the verge of breakdown.

Yes, this is where I want to direct the light.

I am serious about learning new skills,
practicing buffer phrases,
protecting my space,
being the queen of glowing force field boundaries.

I am serious about PLEASURE,
about prioritizing Wildness and Wilding,
my Wild selves and my wild side…

I am serious about silk and lusciousness,
about being fierce and fearless
finding joy wherever I can
and living intentionally
being a sweet and wild revolutionary
in the kingdom of my life and out in the world.

Fragments of a conversation with Incoming Me…

Me: When I skip stones about Prowess, what comes up is that I need to learn more about Ease. Like there is something I don’t yet get about Ease that needs to be in place for me to understand Prowess…
She: Ease is a combination of Preparation and Releasing Expectations. Well, also Intention. But you have already put in the time on that one. I need you to focus on the other two.

Me: Preparation and Releasing Expectations sounds like another form of Sanctuary and Freedom, or [tree and bird].
She: That is such a beautiful insight. Insight is where you shine and are most comfortable, and that’s a strength you bring to this mission. Now though is the time to broaden your focus and develop the skills that allow you to be good with instinct. Instinct will serve you here even more than insight if you let it.

Me: To me, preparation is about provisions, mise en place, structure and form, ritual, all the things that allow for steadiness. And releasing expectations is about trust and receptivity.
She: Excellent. These are all good clues. Approach these from instinct, from raw feel, from your panther self. Be a panther, a jewel and a star. But start from panthering.

What are my wishes?

Instinct.

Comfortable with being powerful, direct, even abrasive when that is what is called for.

Yes, I am a Sweet Revolutionary (and also a Cake Baker).

Resonance. Congruence. Moving forward. Big wild trust. Clarity of intent.

Knowing what I am serious about, and celebrating it.

True to my yes.

True to my yes, to my yes of the moment, to current yes. Wild dedication to yes.

To write/bake each day according to instinct.

To take care of my body that is my home, to invite in my panther self.

To feel myself as an embodiment of the superpower of Regal As Fuck, no matter what monsters have to say. This is absolutely a PROWESS superpower, along with Serene Powerful Presence.

To live and love boldly. With instinct, clarity and prowess.

May it be so.

Postscript!

We extended the new year sale which means there are still lovely things available in the gift shop though not for long. I recommend the Illumination of Qualities if you want to work on Prowess and force-field strengthening — I find that reading the beautiful words and qualities helps me connect with them and remember them throughout my day. They fill me with joy, and joy is something I am serious about this year too.

Also, you probably already know this, but ebook sales are one of the main ways we can keep this place going, and keeping this place going is something I feel strongly about. Thank you for being a part of this with me in whatever way you can.

Invitation: come play with me…

You are invited to share this post and to share many !!!!!! about what is here,

Or share appreciation or anything sparked for you while reading…

You can also share how things have been going, check in, or deposit wishes, gwishes, superpowers, qualities, ingredients, possibly in code.

Safe space for creative exploration asks us to let go of care-taking and advice-giving.

Everyone belongs. We let people have their own experience. We’re supportive and welcoming. We lovingly refrain from giving advice.

And of course it’s always okay to comment under a made-up name, whether for play and delight, or in the interest of Safety First.

Wishes and checking-in are never late because whenever you wish is the right time for wishing.

We remember that people vary and my process doesn’t have to be yours, and this is a good thing.

Here’s how we meet each other: with great kindness and appreciation and awe, whispering (and sometimes shouting) oh, wow what beautiful wishes!

42 Responses to Calling in Prowess. Come in, come in.

  1. Nela Dunato says:

    Happy New Year, and may the world not be overrun by Nazis, Amen.

    Ease has been coming up for me for a long time, and it appears I still don’t quite get it. What you’ve shared is very helpful.

    I’m just wrapping up my week, so I’d like to do a chicken.

    What worked? Spending days in our huge bedroom, instead of my tiny office.
    Next time I might: Remember to lock the doors and put earplugs in sooner.

    The hard:
    • The stupid arguments that make me question everything.
    • The fact that I need to raise my voice (understatement of the year) in order to be acknowledged and for things to start moving forward.
    • Invasions of space.
    • Everything-is-wrong-this-is-stupid-and-pointless kind of meltdown.
    • Realizing that I’ve put so much time and energy into things that have brought me no results, and wondering if there’s any sense in continuing to do it.
    • Having to move D’s clothes around in order to make space for myself. And keeping things neat and tidy being an impossibility in this household.
    • My eyesight seems to get worse and worse, even with the exercises I (sporadically) do.

    The good:
    • Solo Rally!
    • So many ideas that would have never occurred to me if I hadn’t been spending time in the bedroom. For example, using the dresser as a “standing desk” and being able to move as I type (or standing in Vrksasana which I do unconsciously all the time, no idea why).
    • The atmosphere in the bedroom that is light, cosy and spacious, as opposed to anywhere else in this apartment. I think I may take up permanent residence here.
    • Curtains!
    • Encouraging Tarot cards.
    • Art experiments that worked out.

    Superpower I’ve had: Luscious Leisure
    Superpower I want: Playful Presence

    Tomorrow I might explore what I want to get serious about this year. I’ve allowed for some reconfiguring time this week, before I commit to anything new.

  2. Denise says:

    Wow! Amazing!

    This year I am Serious about Having Fun and Finding My No.
    I love the idea of being Serious about practicing buffer phrases too. Well I love a lot of things about this post, but that one kind of rang out like a bell in my chest.

  3. Kate says:

    I think this year I’ll be working on my I’m Never Gonna Get Caught Up monsters, for they are fierce & legion. When everything else is low-stress they’re pretty calm, because they understand that it’s not a todo list, it’s a menu of tasty, tasty options, but. Right now? Everything is not low stress. In fact, nothing is low-stress.

  4. Zr
    Twitter: zirconium
    says:

    !!!! ! !!!!
    Zr recently posted… no room for demons when you’re self-possessed

  5. Havi Brooks
    Twitter: havi
    says:

    Chicken.

    What’s working? SKIPPING STONES first thing in the morning. Today I skipped the stone of “What is Prowess?” Very useful and informative!

    What do I want more of? Toughness.

    Glad for: being indoors during ice storm, having enough food, nowhere else I need to be

    Want: a plan for next steps on big projects, a Rally of Incomings to plan for 2017

  6. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat
    says:

    PROWESS!!! Oh yes. Come in, Prowess! <3
    Kathleen Avins recently posted… A new beginning…

  7. Magic says:

    I don’t want to be in Survival Mode anymore

  8. Nela Dunato says:

    This year I’m getting serious about SPACIOUSNESS.
    That’s what emerged during my solo-Rally as a quality I’ve been *actually* craving for when I’ve said that I want Ease and Freedom (though I’d like those, too). And also it seems to be connected to that lump in my throat that I’ve been cultivating for 30 years (Constriction, the opposite of Spaciousness).

    (I’ve renamed all my scheduled “Break” calendar appointments to “Spaciousness” because I’ve never liked the work “break” anyway – to me it signifies endings, or fracturing. Feels all better now, a reminder to breathe and take in the space around me.)

    I’m getting serious about Presence.
    The compass said that “Presence is Belonging here”, and that made me cry since like all sensitive creatures, I don’t believe that I belong here.
    So here’s to the superpower of Audacious Presence, because I do belong here.
    (We all belong here.)

    I’m getting serious about Creativity, because that’s my only job.
    I’m ready for even deeper levels of honoring my creativity every day, and in every situation.
    (“Creativity is Love” said the compass, and I cried some more.)

    Goodbye, 2016.
    Hello, 2017.
    I am here now. I am ready.

  9. Puck says:

    !!!!!! PROWESS

    Prowess resonated so hard for me the first moment I read that that was going to be the name of January. Prowess to me is about trust. Embracing and Invoking Prowess == trusting that I have what I need to do the things I need. I have had such trouble trusting myself in the past but somehow in the midst of so much awful one thing that has come to the fore is that I can trust myself to make the choices that are right for me. Past Me set things up so that Present Me can make the choices ve needs to make. And I am doing the same for Future Me so that ve can make the choices ve needs to make. And I can trust that Future Me will do the right thing for verself when the time comes. And I can trust that the things I’m doing now are the right things.

    WOW. This is huge. I need to breathe deeply in this space of Trusting Myself, Trusting My Prowess. May I have this superpower always. May we all trust ourselves <3 <3 <3

  10. Feanare says:

    !!! <3 !!!

  11. Kathleen Jowitt
    Twitter: KathleenJowitt
    says:

    Chickening after/(during) a period of illness. Wishing for the return (to all sorts of things).

    The hard:
    – the virus. I have not been ill for this long for a very long time. Headache, sore throat, nosebleeds, fever, existential gloom, insomnia, cough, lethargy. They are all more or less gone now, except the last three, but it was hard.
    – self-doubt, mostly about the current piece of writing, but also generally.

    The good:
    – Yuri!!! on Ice. Turns out that six hours of escapist anime about figure skating and the power of love was exactly what I needed.
    – I am feeling sufficiently better that the concept of being fit enough to do a long walk alongside my little brother in five months time feels… really quite plausible.

    What worked:
    – staying in touch. Keeping in contact with other people who were going through the virus really helped with acknowledging that it was a real thing, and that symptoms like the existential gloom were just… symptoms
    – sleeping in the study. Having a bed to myself improved my sleep about 1000%, when previous solutions like [alcohol + comforting book] had stopped working.

    Wishes:
    – presence presence presence (every common bush afire with God – but to be present in picking blackberries if that’s all I can see).
    – I live by love and not by guilt, and I know how to do this.
    – I pick up the reins with grace, skill and strength.
    – come to that, I do pretty much everything with grace, skill and strength.

    <3 <3 <3 to all
    Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… 100 untimed books: moon

    • Kathleen Jowitt
      Twitter: KathleenJowitt
      says:

      Monday wishes:

      More light. Clarity. Seeing the kingdom. Believing in love. Grace, skill and strength (good wish, last week me!). Yellow arrows. I know what I need to do next.
      Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… Delaying

    • Kathleen Jowitt
      Twitter: KathleenJowitt
      says:

      Saturday chicken

      The hard:
      – ill again

      The good:
      – birds have been coming to our new birdfeeder
      Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… 100 untimed books: orange

    • Kathleen Jowitt
      Twitter: KathleenJowitt
      says:

      Thursday wishes

      – a swift return to full strength
      – what do I do next? yellow arrows, please
      – love
      – presence
      – clear air
      Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… 100 untimed books: breathing

    • Kathleen Jowitt
      Twitter: KathleenJowitt
      says:

      Chickening in January:

      The hard:
      – two rounds of evil death plague flu bug thing
      – corresponding depression
      – broke my glasses, constantly tired, generally feeling like a physical disaster
      – end of the world and all that jazz
      – the constant sense of never having done enough (oh, monsters, monsters)

      The good:
      – Friday lunchtime in particular was just wonderful, feeling alive for the first time this year
      – finding the sky
      – three very beautiful bottles of nail varnish (‘Wildcard’, ‘Showtime’, and ‘Voltage’)
      – birds on the birdfeeder (square bird cakes for square birds! actually they are starlings, and are not really square)
      – a good review

      What worked:
      – participating in ritual
      – noticing
      Kathleen Jowitt recently posted… 100 untimed books: frames

      • Havi Brooks
        Twitter: havi
        says:

        Oooh I love the nail varnish names! And yes to flu being the worst, other than the end of the world (AND ALL THAT JAZZ), which is totally what I need to start calling it.

  12. Leni says:

    I so love this Door, and this entry. I have not Chickened in a while, and I’m feeling so many different threads and it’s all fractal flowers, but the larger picture is not revealing itself to me quite yet.

    I know that 2017 is the Year of Temple:
    -call upon FOundation, Best practices
    -the [Next set of Hogwarts classes] is part of this
    -Studio is contained in Temple
    -astrology points to being Earthed strongly, of substance over hype, of being at home rather than spreading myself out too much. Of small and steady and true, so that I don’t get distracted or dissipated. The Quiet Presence of Deer.\

    My compass for the year, which appeared at a mini-rally in December:
    Dancing
    Owls
    Wild
    New
    Trust
    Initiative
    Merry
    Engaged

    I really want to increase my skills in so many ways this year.

    SuperPowers my writing partner and I are calling in:
    -“Pretend it’s easy.”
    -I have Trust in what I receive
    -This is working out better than I planned!
    -Best practices and exquisite well tending, of course.
    -I know the next thing to do

  13. Magic says:

    A Mournful Chicken

    The Hard
    ~ I am missing Havi and the Sweet Elves that participate in this space *mourn*

    ~ I am grieving the change from Obama, a man I admire, to Trump, a man I abhor. I cannot imagine what it is like for Americans.

    ~ I am also finding my life pretty intolerable right now. More Hard.

    The Magic
    ~ a Sweet Little Elf in my life that I see almost weekly

    ~ blue sky, sunshine and warmth

    ~ a workplace where I feel Secure, even when I don’t anywhere else

    Sending Peace and Gentleness and Sweet Elves to all of you x

  14. Questing Lee says:

    Present. Long time, no chicken. I like the new website, especially the new foyer. The living room/chat room is not behind the entry door, but behind an extra door. And the Door of Prowess is beautiful.

    What worked – wearing my rain boots to take the trash out in the wet instead of my slippers with the not-high-enough-to-keep-my-feet-dry rubber soles.

    Today is I Deserve an Upgrade, DangIt! Day. So I made my hot chocolate with 3 tablespoons of premium cocoa, instead of 3 teaspoons of maybe 1 being premium. When I shower this morning, I will use the softest bath sheet in the house. I Shall See what other Upgrades will happen – maybe going back to bed, dinner out with The Dude, getting expensive coloring pencils, ordering books online – who knows?

    Hugs to all! (And good weather, however you define it.)

    • Magic says:

      Oh, hear hear for Upgrades!!

      And have I lost my way to the Living Room? *wonders if she’s sitting alone in the hallway, randomly saying hello to people as they pass, instead of just walking in to the living room*

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      I love this Upgrade superpower! Here’s to the UPGRADES! <3

  15. Kathleen Avins
    Twitter: spiralsongkat
    says:

    Chickening…

    Hard stuff:
    –the current political climate
    –you know, there really *does* seem to be too much to do, my monsters have a valid point there
    –worrying about a thing or two pertaining to my daughter, also keenly aware that she’ll be back at college next week and I will miss her

    Good stuff:
    –when I was so intensely distressed believing that some of my journals were missing after the move, I had the quiet miracle of taking inventory and discovering that they weren’t lost after all
    –I am growing stronger in my capacity to connect with people across the miles, just when I need it most
    –our new home is really quite lovely, just imagine how great it will feel when we finish unpacking!

    This week, I had the superpower of a shimmering silver shield. Next week, I want the superpower of playful and peaceful productivity.

    * <3 *
    Kathleen Avins recently posted… A new beginning…

  16. Anna says:

    Doing the chicken:
    Hard and Mysterious:
    Feeling that *everything* is wrong
    Feeling that I’m not doing enough, and that maybe it isn’t possible to do enough
    Sense that I cannot figure out the proper order of operations to make things run more smoothly

    Good and Mysterious:
    Rediscovering the stone skipping cards, and drawing ‘Is this from now?’
    Rediscovering that lightness and ease are always there (still! even now!), and all I have to do is ask!
    Discovering that ‘failure/success’ is the wrong frame and it probably always has been. There are many other frames. Any frame that shuts down conversation and connection is the wrong frame for me right now.

  17. Havi Brooks
    Twitter: havi
    says:

    Friday Chicken

    The hard / challenging / mysterious this week:
    + All I want to be doing is related to the Uprising, but oh man the daily rigged game bullshit of life that eats up so much time and energy
    + Two day all day drive through snow storms, not fun, hard on the body-mind
    + Landing
    + Need more hugs, like, some sort of hardcore hug deficiency that I didn’t even know about
    + Rural Utah = being surrounded by people who just do not care about the terrible things that are happening in this country and are just worried about their precious fucking guns
    + the many mysteries of traveling light

    I had the superpowers of Perspective and Tacos, and I want the superpowers of This Turned Out So Amazingly Perfectly!

    + nightmares

    The beautiful and joyful:
    + Fuck Yeah time for RISING UP
    + wild epiphanies
    + out of the city, back to beautiful big sky
    + Play is magic
    + writing up a storm
    + when best practices hold, they serve me well, and when they don’t, well, at least I know why things are falling apart
    + sun, mountains, reservoir, it’s breathtakingly beautiful here
    + made mushroom risotto
    + things are moving

  18. Pqw-orange
    Twitter: fiadhiglas
    says:

    When I was a teenager, some 30 yrs ago, I read somewhere that humans need 8 hugs *a day* to function at their best. Ever since then, i’ve been actively working towards that beautiful (unattainable) goal. I’m a touchy-feely person whose closest local friends (besides Spouse) are plants. No hugs possible.

    Hey, I stayed off Twitter (and away from news) for 6.5 days! Then I checked back in for 5 minutes, and oh look, national crises.

    I’ve accepted that we’re *in* the end of the world, so i’m no longer in nonstop panic mode. Now, i’m angry & determined.

    (But i’d definitely welcome more hugs.)
    Pqw-orange recently posted… Observations 2w

  19. Havi Brooks
    Twitter: havi
    says:

    This week’s wish: it is related to Prowess, and to space, and to being selective about my view, what I let in, what I choose as my surrounding, and how I interact with perspective. It is about tabula rasa and clean counters, and about things that are REFRESHING. I don’t know more than that yet. I want the superpowers of Standing Tall, an outrageous abundance of available hugs (and other forms of sweetness), and The Right Tool For The Job. I want to trust that self-fluency is FUELING THE RESISTANCE, and to take strong powerful striding striking steps in that direction. I want calm, steady conviction and easy clarity. I want to observe myself with great love. May it all be so, or something even better, amen.

  20. Vvvvv says:

    What beautiful wishes!

    This sparked for me that Prowess is a word I’ve been missing. It reminds me of a prowling (panther-like) princess, and the prow of a boat that is full steam ahead.
    Well, I’m not quite full steam ahead on committing to directions for this year. I think my big true yes doesn’t ever show up until the days are much brighter. I love the idea of the right now yes. Yes, I can be hear to listen for the big yes. I can use pencil for the dreams, in case crossing out pen embarrasses me.

    I will borrow (in the sustainable way a candle flame is borrowed) ease and trust and the clear-eyed wildness of seeing the good, over and over. Mmm, joy and stars!

    • Havi Brooks
      Twitter: havi
      says:

      Love the idea of dreaming in pencil (good workaround for monsters), and agreed that winter is an odd time for finding direction. Here’s to the right now yes! <3

  21. Somehow I am beginning to feel more like myself. The immediate horror of November 9, while still looming and too-present, has become more of a background miasma rather than an immediate heart-rending trigger. I am remembering to be kind. To be light. To be aware that there continues to be good in the world. To remember that change can happen if we make our voices heard.

    Trying to stay off social media as much as possible has helped.

    Dreaming of sparks – and discipline – to finally get my own creative mind flowing and productive again. Dreaming of peace. Dreaming of light.

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