very personal adsPersonal ads. They’re … personal! Very.

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…

What do I want?

Last week at Rally W, I was focused on finding my WHOLE-HEARTED YES.

This resulted in a surprising (but really only to me?) realization that I have spent a lot of my life turning down my sparkle and muting my glow.

I have done this for [Reasons] that seemed to make sense.

For safety. Or in the misguided desire to be liked, which is also about safety because everything is about safety.

I have hidden so much of me because of these internally whispered fears (don’t be hot because you’ll get even more unwanted attention, don’t be too pretty because girls won’t like you and you won’t have any friends, don’t talk back because it just ends up making things worse, etc etc), and I hereby announce that I plan to Stop This Bullshit at once.

I am ready to SHINE. I am ready to BE SEEN. I am ready to be my full glorious outrageous wild flower of myself.

To be bold and glow.

What else do I know about this?

This scares me.

A lot.

Which means that it’s important, and I also want to remember that I can tread gently, dance at the edges, approach with tenderness. Safety First. Always.

Abandoning the comfort zone can be pretty violent, I prefer the method of slowly and steadily expanding what feels comfortable until the previously-scary thing and I are cool.

Yes, that’s a link to a post from six years ago, I kind of want to rewrite it now.

What else do I know about this?

This realization (as well as the fact that I haven’t realized it before) falls straight into the category of what we like to call the Stupid Epiphany.

In other words, an understanding so completely obvious that you’re equally surprised by how mind-blowing it is as by the fact that you’re even surprised, because come on, how could you not have known this forever.

The hallmark of the Stupid Epiphany is that it’s a body understanding instead of just a mental understanding. You might have known it before, but now you know it. You know it inside of you.

This is also why it is hard to explain Stupid Epiphanies to other people, because they say things like, Oh I know, me too, weren’t we just talking about this a couple months ago?

YES. And right now it is blowing my mind in an entirely new way.

What else do I know about this?

This is related to my recent obsession with color. Bright, rich, lush, saturated color.

Deviating from my normal wardrobe colors of black, brown, navy, dark green and maroon. Inexplicably drawn to electric pink and eye-popping teal.

Zeroing in on an outrageous, traffic-stopping color called KAPOW! for my fingernails instead of something like Sweet Rose.

I want to be surrounded by color: wild, sexy, unapologetically luscious color.

For someone who is the quietest person in the room, who prefers the back of the room to the stage, invisibility to being the center of attention, this is interesting.

Because I still prefer those things. I just want to shine and glow and be eye-catching and spectacular. I want to allow myself to be those things, because I am already. I’ve just been tamping them down in my mind.

What else do I know about this?

This is related to my ongoing conversation with Sam on the Whole-Hearted Yes.

Living life according to my yes, trusting my yes. Asking what will get me there.

It means noticing when I default into the bland yes that is really more of a not-no, an acquiescing yes, or a yes that is based on old people-pleasing patterns.

This new way requires trust, courage and persistence. Endless experimentation. Taking notes and collecting data points.

The monsters are convinced that this way lies madness (and danger).

What else?

Max was talking the other day about a practice of collecting proud moments.

She named her list Cha Cha Cha!, which I love. Proud is a word that comes with potholes and speed bumps for me so renaming is important. My list is called Kapow!

For me, I’ve been tracking moments of being true to myself, committing to my Whole Hearted Yes. Moments when I say no to things that are not that. Moments when I follow my indicated desire to see where it takes me.

And then I give myself a hundred thousand sparklepoints.

Anything else about this?

I made a compass with the qualities I want from this practice. Eight directions, eight qualities, eight breaths.

Crown. Trust. Presence. Bask. Source. Truth. Glow. Boldly.

Clockwise: I wear the crown of trusting in presence, I bask in source, my truth glows boldly!

Counterclockwise: I boldly glow truth-source, I bask in presence and trust the crown.

I love this combination of Glow and Boldly.

That’s what I want. That is exactly what I want.

To boldly glow where I have not gone before. To boldly glow where I have not glowed before. And in ways that I have not glowed before.

To boldly glow where I have not.

To be true to myself in a way that is more visible, more palpable, more colorful and more alive. With intensity and panache!

What will help with this?

Set the intention. Nap on it. Dance it, write it, play with it, walk the labyrinth.

I can take deeper breaths, getting quieter and quieter until I hear what is true.

More sweet pauses, yes to the red lights, remember the purple pills, say thank you to the broken pots.

Where do I want to start?

Same as the last wish:

Bright colors. Passion. Costume changes. Skip stones with incoming me. Dance. Intensity. Writing. Red lipstick. Eight breaths. My body gets the deciding vote.

And, as always, by saying thank you in advance.

Thank you in advance!

Me: Hey, slightly-wiser me, what do you have for me?

She: This is what we have been training for, we have been building up to this. All the things you’ve learned over the past few years: to smile at the broken pots, to let the barns burn, to say goodbye to every relationship that isn’t supportive of you, to let go and then let go some more. You did it for this. You got quiet for this. It’s all been for this. And this is going to take you to the next thing. So enjoy it, and let this be a true experiment, without attachment to results. Like with any good experiment, some things you try might backfire spectacularly. That’s a good thing. Bring your glow into these new places, and practice the same things we’re working on in dance: smaller steps, staying grounded and self-contained, trusting your sense of play. The thing Eric says: “Do that same move again but this time burn me with those eyes….”

The superpower of coming into your superpowers.

August-2014-Emerging August is Emerging in the Fluent Self calendar.

The superpower of coming into your superpowers.

If boldly glowing isn’t emerging, I don’t know what is. Also I stand by what I said last week: I am ready to come into my superpowers, including the superpowers of knowing that it doesn’t matter what anyone thinks, I Am Okay With Being Seen, receiving gifts that are winging their way to me. Let’s do it.

Oh wow, what beautiful wishes.

Oh, wow. What beautiful wishes.

What else do I want?

Seeds planted without explanation, a mix of secret agent code and silent retreat. Things to play with someday.
  • Everything is easier than I thought, and look, miracles everywhere.
  • I have the best time dancing in my ballroom.
  • This doesn’t require my input!
  • Ha, it’s so perfect that it turned out like this. Past me is a GENIUS
  • I have what I need, and I appreciate it. There are resources to do this.
  • Trust and steadiness. I can see why this moment is good.
  • I am fearless and confident. I do the brave things and it is not even a big deal, and I still get sparklepoints, yay.
  • The superpower of Everything Enhances My Superpowers.
  • Ops: A Beautiful Stew. Real Seeing. The Protocols. Sip Hint Learn. The Panache Brigade!


X marks the spot.

Progress report on past Very Personal Ads.

So. Last week, aka An entirely new kind of waiting…

That was a very helpful wish. I am feeling much calmer and steadier about all the in-between in my life. I am enjoying being in the training montage now.

Thank you, writing. Thank you, me who asked.

Attenzione! Attention, AGENTS.

I wish to whisper a whisper about the Monster Manual! It comes paired with the world’s best coloring book, which does so much monster-dissolving magic that even if you wait to try the techniques, you’ll still feel better about everything.

Self-fluency is hard enough, we need ways to to interact with the thoughts-fear-worry-criticism that shuts down creative exploring. And when people get the manual, I am able to me spend more time writing here. So if you don’t need help with monsters, get one for a friend. Or plant a wish that someone gets it for you! And bring people you like to hang out here. The more of us working on our stuff, the better for all of us. ♡

Keep me company?

Consider this an open invitation to deposit wishes, gwishes, personal ads. In any size/form you like, there’s no right way. Updates on past experiments are welcome too, as is anything sparked for you.

Commenting culture: This is safe space for creative exploration. We are on permanent vacation from care-taking and advice-giving. We are here to play.

Let’s throw things in the pot! And: Amnesty. Leave a wish any time you want.


The Fluent Self