very personal ads

I write a Very Personal Ad (also known as a Vision of Possibility & Anticipation) each week to practice wanting, listening, getting clear on my desires

the point isn’t getting my wish (though cool things have emerged from wishing), it’s learning about my relationship with wanting, 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…

this is the 338th consecutive week of wishing, come play!

peaceful resolutions

each friday when I reflect on my week,
both the highlights
(the good, the joyful, the sparks of delight),
and the contrast
all that which is challenging, frustrating,
revealing of things we do not always wish to see

I always have the same wish:

may all misunderstandings and distortions,
internal and external,
dissolve in love if not in laughter

resolution here in the sense of easing

perfect simple elegant solutions
which breathe ease and relief into the situation
delivering comfort and reassurance to everyone involved
that’s what I want

I would like peaceful resolutions to any number of
misunderstandings, conflicts, disagreements, tangles,
assumptions and jumped-conclusions
going on in my life right now
of which there seem to be mysteriously many
at the moment

I would like the superpower of SOLVED!

as well as the superpowers of

  • oh of course this worked out beautifully
  • clarity and lightness
  • yes this is and was treasure, thank you for this experience
  • I am now better at taking up space
  • it is now easier for me to both ask for and establish clear expectations and boundaries in all situations
  • I sit in my own swing!
  • I trust that all is well, all is and was and will be well

what are other meanings of [peaceful resolutions]

well, of course, there are wishes-intentions for the new year
I never make new year’s resolutions
or at least I never call them that
because, for me, resolution implies

either [I will do Thing X, in time Y, in order to achieve goal Z]
or [I will stop doing X, for duration Y, in service of goal Z]

and there are more than a couple of problems with this, of course
although… (here comes the aside)

of course bear in mind as always

the useful life principle of [People Vary!]
with its sweet healing grace and built-in permission,
so if resolutions work for you and bring you joy,
or you have a different understanding of what they are,
that is lovely
may you resolve your resolutions in good health
and receive exactly what you need from that practice

anything I say in this space is — always —
a reflection of what is true for me in this moment
I share my answers not because they are yours (they probably aren’t)
but because I want to share the experience of
embarking on grand adventures to explore internal territories
so we can all do that, both together and on our own,
while glowing curiosity, love and presence


okay, back to my take on resolutions, with an example!

I am over-the-top obsessed with dance
so it would have been very easy for me to make
a January resolution last year in the form of some sort of promise
“I will dance every day” or I will do X type of trainings
or practice Y amount of time

imagine how intensely disappointed and frustrated I would have been
to discover 2015 had different plans for me:
a slow-healing knee injury, followed by five months on the road
in a nine foot camper, followed by intense chronic pain

there is no way I would have been able to hold myself
to a commitment like that
and the truth is, that kind of commitment can be, in a way,
kind of disrespectful to presence

it doesn’t honor the in-the-moment experience of
my body and my energy
it doesn’t make space for possible new desires and passions
to emerge as I get to know incoming me,
this is the ever-changing dynamic essence of life and aliveness
big powerful stuff
I don’t want to get in the way of that with promises

here’s something rarely acknowledged

not having the same goals/desires as we used to
is — or, at least, can often be —
a good thing
it’s a sign that we aren’t living in stagnation, rejoice:
we are growing and moving because we are alive and free!

(and yes things can get scary when the old desires disappear
before the new ones have revealed themselves)
(many breaths for this)

so even though our rigged-game culture really piles on the pressure to
Stick To It / Get It Done / Cross The Finish Line etc
that’s not always necessarily in service
of our true needs and desires


we want to remember that it serves the rigged game
for us to go through these yearly motivational rituals
and set ourselves up for perceived “failure” later on when [life does life]
and we are asked to change course
it’s a set-up!

we’re set up to feel bad about ourselves when life happens
this doesn’t help us take care of ourselves
but it does preserve the status quo equilibrium of
Dissatisfied Striving,
with everyone constantly feeling guilty and less-than

it’s seriously no fun feeling bad about yourself

also an enormous waste of time and internal resources

so if I make resolutions that say I will do something
this supports the problematic mentality of “I will be happy when”
instead of recognizing that I am enough now,

and, again, I can’t know the future,
so I can’t know if I will be able to do X,
or if X will remain the true desire of incoming me
I can’t stay true to presence and my YES in the moment
if I declare what and how and who future me will be

so what can I do instead?

without setting myself up for perceived “failure”
and still setting a trajectory into motion for incoming me

what I do instead of resolving…

instead of [I will do X] or [I will not do X]
I name the qualities I want to get to know better
and invite them to play

naming and welcoming
my wishes and intentions
inventing games
playing with incoming me and
sending her (real or imaginary) postcards
setting off on a trajectory of intention and discovery
through deep listening and asking over and over again
what do I want

here is my compass for the incoming year

North: TRUST
Northeast: RELAX
Southeast: EXPAND
Southwest: TREASURE
West: GLOW
Northwest: WILD

what I want is on the calendar

no, I mean, it’s literally on the calendar

January is Freedom, February Sanctuary
March is Lusciousness and April Roots
Wild May leads to Wonder in June
July Harmony and August Muse
September for Intention, October is Center
November for Echoing, December filled with Light

I can almost taste these words

and their echoing combinations and incantations:


there is a hard-to-describe power in naming the months like this
seeing each day on your calendar,
what you called in for yourself

the magical 2016 Year of Doors calendar has a blank line for you to give the month your own name as well, you can pick up one of the remaining copies over here if that appeals — password: sweetdoors


each new year’s eve I write wishes
for the new year
about things I want to embody

seeding seeds, setting these wish-intentions into motion
and releasing them
to be what they need to be,
in their own form and their own timing,
and to surprise me with future treasure

I set off on a course, a trajectory, a direction
based on what feels yes now
but with full permission for the adventure to be the adventure,
for the course to change to meet what I need and desire

por ejemplo….a wish from a year ago:

“I learn to feel wonderfully confident in my dancing”

guess what? all that not-dancing time
delivered useful information for dancer-me
about Grounding, Presence, Equilibrium, Self-Treasuring
and so on
and these qualities, as I got to know them,
found their way into my body and my dance

last night I was at waltz fusion feeling
and I was like whoa hey I got my wish, sweet!
I learned how to do it
just not in the way
me-of-a-year-ago might have imagined

zero disappointment
with my beautiful wish-intention
that was not a resolution
but which resolved so many things for me

this is what I want to remember when I say peaceful resolutions

my wish happened for me
and also, it happened in its own beautiful time

you might even say, it resolved itself
so in that sense
not making a resolution was a form of resolution

and setting a trajectory of qualities
ensured that I didn’t
perceive in any way that I had “failed” to follow through

this is what I want
this deep self-treasuring
setting things up for enhanced joy,
not for self-recrimination

but what about when there are goals that feel fun?

I am all for fun

for example I do have a dance training objective this year
which I turned into a game
I pretend I’m on a reality show called Montage
though of course it has a built-in clause that I can
vote myself off the island when I’m ready for the mission to change
and yes, there’s a prize for that

and also I have defined training
as anything that helps me be more embodied,
more connected to myself and my body
which allows for quiet rest days that are part of my training too

the point is,
play and presence, presence and play
this is how I do

What else is resolution?

resolution is also CLARITY, zooming in, high res, enhance-enhance!

and resolution is also RESOLVE, like having resolve
a quiet strength and fortitude
come in, come in, all the superpowers of that

haha I just thought of this
resolving like re-solving — solving something again!

and maybe resolution is just
renewing my commitment to being present and passionate
I like this

oh and also like U.N. Resolutions, which are basically like,
“here is something we feel strongly about!”
making a statement
I can do that

what do I know about my wish this week

it is about presence and embodiment
being very aware of what I want
and the words I use to describe my process

it is about being playful and easygoing with life
and leaving room for wonder and for unexpected treasure

and: letting things having more than one meaning
being curious about that
receptive, as always, to being marvelously surprised

may it be so!


popcorn with ghost pepper salt
and sitting with the breathtaking 2016 calendar
looking at all the doors
in this year of seeds and doors

superpower of receptive to all incoming good surprises.

December - Treasure More december on the 2015 fluent self calendar is TREASURE MORE, with the superpower of receptive to all incoming good surprises

is the word of the week

and self-treasuring is the treasure
and also the map

thank you, past-me, for putting this
on the calendar
and for the Year of More
which was exactly what I needed

last week’s wishes

I wished a wish about trust in the wild winds

and had a peaceful week
I let other people be in their stuff
I trusted
I looked for miracles and found them

thank you, process of writing about wishes, and thank you, me who asked

invitation: come play with me…

you are invited to share many !!!!!! about what is here,
or share anything sparked for you while reading

deposit wishes, gwishes, superpowers, qualities, ingredients, intel, possibly in code

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

wishes are never late because whenever you wish is the right time for wishing

here’s how we meet each other’s wishes: oh, wow what beautiful wishes

The Fluent Self