Goddess Rising series

Goddess Rising: Sierra Frost

Every week, we are unconditionally grateful to share this space here on the Passion Yoga School blog with the phenomenal ladies of the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our opportunity to connect and collaborate with these incredible movers and shakers, as they do amazing things, follow their passions, and make the world a better place. This week, Sierra Frost took the time to share her journey with us!

 

Sierra Frost is a graduate of the Healing Arts Institute in Fort Collins, CO and Passion Yoga School in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. She serves clients wanting to reconnect with their bodies and free their minds, to move onto more joyous, active lifestyles after trauma. Sierra uses a combination of modalities of yoga, massage therapy, mental health awareness, mindfulness, and neurolinguistic programming in her work. With previous experience in the field of education, she maintains an informative style of communication and enjoys clients of all ages. Sierra especially lights up when she teaches through speaking events and workshops. When Sierra is not teaching or giving bodywork, you can find her writing poetry, running marathons, volunteering, and traveling the world.

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Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Sierra: I believe we all have a spiritual compass. Sometimes we call this our core values, our religion, God, the universe, divinity, faith, and on and on. I believe by facilitating space for people to become aware of personal behavior patterns, we also uncover our own spirituality. When we become clear on what that is for each of us, we are able to design a lifestyle that supports our spirituality and connects us to humanity by way of knowing we ALL experience this deep essence as a compass. We can then honor our own actions, as well as the actions of others, knowing we are all doing our best with the resources we have. I practice every modality that I facilitate in my personal life. I believe to teach effectively, we need to be experiencing what we ask of our students. I know my work is a spiritual tool because I have faced my own struggles using the same practices and continue to go deeper each day. I will only ask of others what I am willing to do and be myself.

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Sierra: I grew up being sexually abused and was put in the position of learning how to care for myself almost immediately. I experienced how our interactions with other humans can affect our lives and understanding of the world as a young child, which translated to learning what kind of world I wanted to live in and how I could use my interactions to create that world with other people. I learned to practice radical empathy through vulnerability, curiosity, and forgiveness of my family members, and ultimately myself. Upon adulthood I wanted to understand how I became a statistical anomaly in a clearer way. This motivated me to immerse myself in tangible self care skills, human development, brain science, physiology, anatomy, and philosophy of yoga. I wanted to know how stress travels through our mental, emotional, energetic, and physical bodies. I wanted to understand how divinity showed up in my personal life. I wanted to believe that I was not alone. I wanted to find the path that pushed beyond trauma, beyond what I was told, even beyond social normalcies of happiness, and into bliss. I know now this is possible. The reason behind anything I do in life is rooted in my belief that humans deserve to feel safe and have tools to create joy in this life.

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Sierra: My worst habit is piling on tons of commitments until I have no time or balance in my life. Sometimes it is related to attaching my worth to my accomplishments instead of knowing that I am valuable simply by being still and breathing. I have a system I created for myself to have one task per day for each facet of life. I have specific boundaries for how much time per day or week I am spending on a topic or task. This creates a space that I can address my needs in all areas, then triggers me to check in with myself and see if I am called to do more or to stop and have space. I ask people I know to hold me accountable for rest, art, and dancing because those activities rejuvenate me.

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Sierra: The advice I would give to other goddesses would be that no other outcome is possible besides success. When you run into an obstacle, ask everyone you know about it, research it, and use these connections and resources to move through it. We have service all around us, if we are willing to be vulnerable to say we need help, accept nobody does this life alone, and receive what is offered. The world needs your authentic passion and purpose; anything less serves no one. Be huge!!

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Sierra: Each evening I make sure to check my schedule for which tasks I have the next day. I plan into my schedule a grounding space where I do yoga practice, affirmations, connect to spirit through music, breath, and gratitude (mindful minutes). I revisit my spiritual plan every 3 months to rotate tools, affirmations, and mindful minutes to what serves me best according to my target goals for that season, knowing these goals are guided by my personal spiritual practice.

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Sierra: We often hide our shame and shadows from others, when these experiences are very often the fuel that manifests our destiny. Have you hidden from anything within you that has held you back in actualizing full self love?

I hid my experience of being abused for almost 20 years. It was only when I became so physically ill that I did not want to live anymore that I felt forced to share my true story with the world. I felt shame that I was not worthy of safety or love and that I needed to maintain indifference in my emotions so that I could save the world. I believed the only path to being loved was to hide what I saw as flaws. When I sense shame now, I immediately tell someone so that nothing remains secret. This is a difficult practice sometimes and I believe it grounds me to my spirituality and lifestyle.

PYS: Who inspires you? Who should we interview next?

Sierra: The people who inspire my work include Brene Brown, Elizabeth Gilbert, Louise Hay, Bessel Van Der Kolk, Jim Henry, Thomas Meyers, and the eyes of children and puppies. You should just post a lot of photos of the eyes of children and puppies looking into the reader believing that they are limitless to be anything they choose.

Goddess Rising: Jess Tomlinson

Every week, we are unconditionally grateful to share this space here on the Passion Yoga School blog with the phenomenal ladies of the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our opportunity to connect and collaborate with these incredible movers and shakers, as they do amazing things, follow their passions, and make the world a better place. This week, Jess Tomlinson took the time to share her journey with us!

Jess Tomlinson adores supporting ambitious single women who have been successful in business but are secretly longing for love. Through her private and group coaching and international retreats, Jess helps women relax into their Radiant Feminine so that they can powerfully and easily attract the deep, meaningful, supportive partnership they deserve.

Jess has been leading women's empowerment groups for more than 5 years and is honored to have co-produced a local TEDxWomen event, TEDxFremontEastWomen, in her hometown of Las Vegas for 3 consecutive years. Her expert advice has been shared on multiple media outlets including alongside Byron Katie on WNPR as well as on live TV for Las Vegas' NBC affiliate station, to name a few. Jess was also featured as one of the Top 5 Empowered Women Entrepreneurs in Luxury Las Vegas Magazine.

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Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Jess Tomlinson: I love supporting women in recognizing that relationships can be the source of our greatest spiritual awakening! Heartbreak and love can either shut us down, or wake us up. Through my work, I guide women into recognizing their deepest desires and show them how these very desires are what a man longs to fulfill! It's quite amazing the breakthroughs and understanding about how masculine and feminine dynamics work, when my clients open themselves up to this new way of nurturing relationships. Since my clients are ambitious women, they are often operating from the place of "decision maker" (masculine) and aren't able to ease out of this role in relationships. Once they learn how to let go, relax into their feminine and trust...the man they have always dreamed of usually shows up! It's a beautiful spiritual experience when a woman realizes that all she's ever desired lives with her greater feminine power...it just takes a bit of fine tuning.

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Jess: The moments that have left me lifeless, unsure how to go on and frustrated have been from heartbreak. I spent most of my life operating as a leader, making decisions and busting ass in corporate America. I was afraid to be beautiful, because I thought that wouldn't make me smart. So, I downplayed my beauty, put on layers of "smart" protection and marched on. Little did I know that this way of operating was actually keeping me from receiving the partnership I so desperately desired. One where the man would take control, adore me and support my endless array of emotions. I would deny support from men in the simplest ways...if they wanted to open the door, I would rush to do it first, for example. I was so terrified of being seen as weak. Thank goodness after a 2 1/2 year relationship will a tall, dark and handsome doctor (I thought I had it made)...he didn't show up for Christmas even though he had bought a plane ticket, and my world forever changed. I vowed to do things differently...to understand what was going wrong. He later came back and proposed...and I believe it was because I had begun honoring my desires and my feminine power and beauty. I declined his proposal, but am so grateful for the experience...it was the most powerful, clear decision to say "no" that I have made to this day. Now, I'm so inspired to teach women what I have learned so that they can powerfully and effortlessly attract a man who will honor their feminine beauty and support them in what they desire.

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Jess: My worst habit is dimming my light. While I am a confident woman, I often hold back for fear of being too much, stealing the opportunity for other women to shine, or because I'm worried what I say doesn't matter much. It's so interesting because I've been on multiple stages, spoken in front of thousands, and yet, in intimate settings or with other people who I believe are really smart, I hold back. Because of this, I have been honoring my Radiant light by speaking up in groups when I feel the urge. Reminding myself that it actually doesn't matter if the comment benefits the group, instead, simply speaking up honors my voice and is a reminder to my soul that I matter. 

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Jess: Be gentle on yourself. My coaching style is very different in the sense that much of it is about softening instead of "doing something." We have enough to do in this world, and we don't spend enough time just BEING. One analogy I love to give my clients is to treat themselves as if they were a child, or someone you love dearly...if you wouldn't speak to a child or a loved one in the way you speak to yourself, soften your self talk. I see the Radiant Light in you!

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Jess: My spiritual practice happens mostly in the shower! I set my cell phone on the bathroom counter (something I learned from a boyfriend) and play music from my Amazon Prime account, usually the Devi Prayer. Then, I spray essential oils in the shower, put my hands on my heart, take a deep breath, and say a prayer for my day. Another part of my daily practice, because I am a relationship coach, is to observe men that I see while out and about and appreciate something about them...anything. Whether it is the kindness of their eyes, the way they offered to help a woman lift her bag into the overhead compartment on a plane, or even the lower tone of their voice. It's amazing how this practice alone has allowed me to attract deep, spiritual, loving relationships.

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Jess: I'm a pretty tell-all person, however one thing that I've been hiding lately is my recent break-up. Since I'm a relationship coach, I have a fear of being seen as a fraud when my own relationships end, even though they are the very things that make me a great relationship coach because I learn so much! My latest relationship was the most beautiful experience I've ever had with a man. I felt cherished. Taken care of. He truly stepped up as a man so that I could relax into my feminine. It was divine. I quit my corporate job and was ready to more where he lived (different state)...even though it was his suggestion, he ended up breaking up with me a week after I quit my job. It was devastating, heartbreaking and I am still processing this experience. In fact, just writing this is getting me excited to speak about it more so we can all heal our collective love wounds together!  

PYS: Who inspires you?

Jess: Sooo many people inspire me! However, one person is coming to mind right now...I interviewed her during my tele summit, The Me Time Movement Summit, and finally met her in person just recently. She is a beautiful women. I cried just being around her because I felt truly seen (those are powerful people!). Her name is Libby Crow.

Goddess Rising: Haley Night

Every week, we get to share this space with an inspiring woman from the health, wellness and self development community. It is such a lovely opportunity to be able to connect and build with so many compelling women from around the world as they follow their passion. This Wednesday, we give thanks for Haley Night, a spiritual business mentor, sharing her journey with us.

Haley Night is a spiritual business mentor who works with heart-centered women entrepreneurs to help them to build their business through the deepening of their spiritual practice. The guiding principle of her business and the work that she does is that your business is nothing more than a reflection of your own internal condition. A former ivy league psychotherapist, she works with her clients 1:1, at retreats and through group masterminds using a combination of mindset coaching, energetic healing, spiritual guidance and intuitive business strategy work. Haley's free guided meditation to magnify your manifesting can be found here.

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Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Haley Night: The work that I do as an entrepreneur and my spiritual path are one in the same. I lead by the guiding principle that your business (or career, relationship, etc.) is only as healthy as you are. This means that the only way to have success in business is to follow your path, deepen your intuition and put yourself first.

When you're an entrepreneur, your business is going to reflect back to you all of the dark corners in your life that you previously decided not to work on. It brings up the stuff you've been ignoring. My work invited me to go deeper into my own healing, fiercely and unapologetically. 

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Haley: The wounds that I've experienced in my life haven't just inspired my work, they ARE my work. When you're on a spiritual path, you are forever healing; we pull back a new layer as we unfold and step further onto our paths as light workers. It is then our divine responsibility to share openly about our own healing.

My core wounds and the work I will forever be doing to heal are exactly what attracts the women to me who most need my support. We are constantly teaching to others what we are currently healing ourselves. So many women, especially healers and coaches, believe that they have to be "healed" or have it all together in order to teach others. This is a teaching from the patriarchy that is no longer serving us as women. Now is the time to step forward. Right now.

Having been trained as a psychotherapist in the ivy league systems for years, I went through a process of picking up stories about lack and stringent boundaries that has taken years to unlearn. It is my belief that the more vulnerable we are as healers in the world, the more we empower other women to do the same. Sharing your story is the most powerful thing you can do. 

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Haley: I've been on an almost life-long journey of healing my body image and the diet-binge cycle that had been consistently pulling my away from my path towards truth. One of the behaviors that I continue to struggle within this area is consistently nourishing my body in the morning, despite intuitively knowing how much better I feel when I do. What helps me with this is to actually decide on a few different breakfast options the night before. I don't like to "decide" definitively as this is a diet habit from the past. However, knowing what some options are and slowing down enough in the morning to remember that my body requires and deserves nourishment is the action I'm taking. Most importantly: If I don't eat breakfast I don't beat myself up for that. I love myself enough to know that skipping breakfast isn't the end of the world. Beating myself up around engaging in a habit that I'm trying to change is often worse than the habit itself. I've learned through my training that when we're engaging in a behavior, it's nothing more than a symptom that there's an emotion we're trying to avoid. So, I slow down and I turn within and figure out what's going on. That's the work.

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Haley: To the goddesses, sisters and priestesses out there who are stepping onto this path, I thank you with a deep bow because the world needs you. Avoid choosing an idol or a guru. When you try to follow someone else's path or teachings too closely you are closing yourself off to realizing your full potential as a light worker. True actualization comes from an openness to learn from a myriad of teachers and then releasing all of that and asking Spirit how to integrate this work into your own unique approach. Be authentic and vulnerable.

I also offer to these women the truth of simplicity around one of the most important principles we have to learn; surrender. It's nothing more than acknowledging that we don't know.

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Haley: My daily practice is whatever intuitively feels good to me on any given day. For me personally, when I try to follow a "routine" it ends up feeling like something to check off a list and defeats the purpose. 

I start my day in stillness, simply checking in with where I'm at and deciding what I need. Sometimes that's not much at all, and other times it includes an hour or so of ritual. The only constant is that I ask spirit to work through me and I acknowledge that I'm not in charge.

Some practices that I truly love are lighting a candle, anointing with oil, playing with my crystals, pulling angel cards and meditating. This is always changing and I love learning new things. Spirituality, to me, is like being a kid in a candy store! It's so fun, there is so much out there to learn and you get to pick and choose what intuitively feels good.

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Haley: Our secrets are what keeps us stuck and sick. They fill us with such potent shame and isolation. When you're IN the darkness, a secret can feel safe and seductive even; especially to those of us craving a deep need for control.

In the past, my eating disorder was a secret. Many people will relate to the fact of how equally good and painful it is to keep secrets around eating disorders. It's a part of the cycle of control. This secret kept me in chains for over a decade. Healing begins when we practice radical honesty with our loved ones. For me, this extended beyond that to opening up vulnerably to the world. There are so many women out there who are still hiding this secret, so I'm serving as a voice for them.

A secret that I've recently started to talk about is an unhealthy relationship that I left with someone who was actively struggling with substance abuse. When you're in a relationship with an addict you begin to lose track of the many, many secrets; lies you're telling yourself especially. This relationship, although one of the most painful experiences of my life, is part of what guided me to deepen on my spiritual path. I look at this "secret" as one that ultimately helped me to live my truth in a deeper way. Removing myself from this situation was the most empowering decision I've made in my life and I'm incredibly proud of that.

PYS: Who inspires you?

Haley: Every single woman on her spiritual path, or considering a path are who inspire me the most in this world. Women like my sister Evan, who share different beliefs than I, also inspire me. So often those on a spiritual path begin to surround themselves with people who have similar belief systems. Having sisters who can engage with us deeply around differing beliefs is important and for me, has actually deepened our relationship.

My spiritual mentor, Jennifer Cain, inspires me deeply with her wisdom of the divine feminine and radical vulnerability. Her work has changed my life. The modern mystic mother-daughter duo, Traci and Kayla Hines, are incredible and helped me to fully embrace my gifts. I am deeply inspired by their work. My dear friend Kate Dalebout, an author and podcaster, inspires me every day. She is one of the most authentic women I've ever met and is willing to go deep and do the work. One of my mentors, Emily Aube, opened me up to the world of angels and is emerging as an incredible leader in the spiritual world. She is a fierce advocate for anxiety recovery and is interested in a dialogue that I'm very passionate about; looking at the gaps in mental health treatment around spiritual gifts being mislabeled as pathology. 

Goddess Rising: Danielle Paige

Every week, we are given the amazing opportunity to connect and collaborate with an amazing woman from the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our chance to share this space with just a few of the incredible ladies around the world who are making change as they follow their passion. This week, Danielle Paige answered our questions for us!

Danielle Paige is an Intuitive Astrologer, Healer, and Spiritual Teacher who specializes in helping women understand the energy they were born under so they can clear blockages, find their purpose, and so much more! She uses your personal birth chart as a map of your soul and blends her astrological background with her intuitive abilities for a practical and soulful approach to helping you live a happier life.

She has been featured inThe Numinous, The WellnessWonderland, Over The Moon Magazine, The Purpose Fairy, JMag - JDates online magazine, Delish, Blog Talk Radio, Soul School by Inner Hue and she has made several appearances on the Marilu Show with Marilu Henner as her go-to Astrologer.

Danielle is also the creator of SOULcial Media Circle, a monthly virtual drum circle that helps people connect back to the cycles of the Universe. She has done retreats from Venice, CA to Florence, Italy and just completed her Moon Goddess Retreat in Hawaii in June.

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Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Danielle Paige: I believe everything in life can be a tool to help us so with my work I tap into the "invisible" and make it practical. I use astrology as a tool to understand your soul contract.

When I pull up a birth chart I can see someone's purpose, their behavioral patterns, their energy and help guide them to their highest good. It's not about seeing every outcome of their life. That I cannot do nor do I try to pretend because we all have free will every second of our lives.

I use my intuition (my connection with spirit) and astrology to help align people with their true self and move away from all those fears and limitations that we often pick up over time just by being human.

Astrology is a magical tool to help you become more in tune with the cycles that you're under so that you can understand how you're evolving....and when you do this it helps you as not only a human but also on the soul level as well. Remember, we are multidimensional beings, all limitations are an illusion. 

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Danielle: Ever since I was little I always felt alone. I've had this emptiness inside of me that was unexplainable. I always had wonderful and supportive parents but it didn't matter, it was something that I felt inside. It's not always something that you always just shake.

When I was young this manifested into depression partly from the emptiness but also because I didn't realize how sensitive I was and I would pick up on people's energy all the time so I had no idea of knowing what was mine and what was theirs. I just took it all in like a sponge.

Later in my 20's this manifested into an eating disorder. I think on some level I always knew there was "more" but I never knew what that was. The pain inside (even though everything on the outside probably looked fine) was still there and I ended up taking a semester off of college and going to a treatment center to get help. It was there that I started to realize the strength that I had. I saw people that were suffering for years and I used that as a mirror, I told myself I had too many things in life to do that I had to get a handle on this, and I did. It took many years to really learn to love my body and there are moments even today that I judge myself in the mirror but I have the tools know to remind myself of my divinity when my ego acts up.

That feeling of being alone as well as that hunch that I was here to do something larger was part of my learning about my connection to spirit. You see, the reason why I always felt alone was because I was disconnected from source. We all are in a way but mine (all I can do is speak for myself) was deep. I was always intuitive but I didn't really know anything beyond that. It took years of self discovery and then starting at age 30 during my Saturn Return where my entire life completely changed and I had to go in a different direction. This is when I really started stepping into my purpose. We all do, we can't truly become who we are destined to be before that because we have certain lessons to learn. It's just a timing thing.

This is where the light started...from my wound of feeling alone. Today when I feel that it's now my clue to let me know that I'm feeling disconnected from source...which is ultimately, disconnected from myself and my own love. So I go back to mediation, chakra cleansing, prayer, silence, self care, relaxing. I come back into alignment with my SOUL not my ego. It's a beautiful thing but was also a source of lots of pain growing up. But then again....isn't that how most healers find themselves?? :) 

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Danielle: Oh this is an easy one! I'm actually really assertive and have a lot of masculine energy. Meaning I can run a business, do tasks, fix things, and push my energy out all day long! The term boss lady is kinda my middle name! lol.

Don't get me wrong, this is great and we need masculine energy to balance ourselves but I'm also learning how to receive, how to step back, how to allow, how to pause, how to be more gentle. I'm definitely fierce and that's great but I also have a side of me that's tender and sensitive. She's been hiding for a long time and now I allow that part of myself to show up more often. It's how I relate to my clients, I treat everyone like family (I have a moon in Cancer so it's part of my being!) and it's one of my greatest strengths that I'm discovering as well. 

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Danielle: I would say stop comparing. It's so easy to these days especially with social media but most of what we see online is not real. I try my very best to always be myself! Actually, I am probably too honest as most of my followers know. (You never know what is gonna come out of my mouth! haha!) But be careful about putting others on a pedestal that may or may not be true. I can read energy so I see it all day long on social media. There are tons of amazing people out there but there are also people who have a following and are not in touch with themselves so it's not all authentic. Just don't compare because you don't always know the real story.

I will also add which goes along with what I said above and that's listen to your intuition. The truth is most of us know what to do. Of course there are always situations where we are confused and need guidance and that's ok but in reality if we listen to the soft voice in our hearts we will know the answers.

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Danielle: My spiritual practice is always changing. I am someone that needs diversity so I don't do it the same time every day but it does always involve these at some level: Kundalini yoga, chakra cleansing, meditation, prayer, salt baths, quiet/alone time and most importantly and this is a biggie because you can do all the spiritual practice all day long but it doesn't matter if when you get out into the world you forget it all. I practice trying to be my best self every day.

Now, I'm not going to sit here and pretend like I'm Mother Teresa because that is far from the truth but I do believe I'm good human and I try to see the good in people. Not everyone will be able to be on the same page as you and being spiritual doesn't mean you stay in touch with people that are not in alignment with your path, quite the contrary.

At the end of the day if when you do something you can ask yourself is this for my highest good and out of my highest good and if the answer is yes then you are light years ahead of most of the world. :)

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Danielle: Wow, this is a great question. Here is the irony.....for me what has held me back is trust/faith. Yes I realize this is the basis for what I do because I wouldn't be able to even communicate with spirit if I didn't trust in something greater than myself but my path has been nothing that is traditional and it's been very hard being thrown in with the "Joneses" when you are far from that.

It's ok now and I love who I am and how I see things differently, however, doubting my abilities and doubting that things will happen even though it's a on a longer human timeline that most people I know has been really hard.

It's funny because I can say I trust myself so much, in fact I trust myself more than most people, however, the Universe always knows what we need to work on and whereas that may be someone else's lesson mine has been to trust the intuitive, psychic, and mediumship gifts that I have. Say what?! Yes, I've had to learn, one that I even have these, who knew?! And two, that I can trust myself to receive this information, that everything I need is inside of me and I don't have to look outside of myself to connect with them. The trusting in the invisible is something that comes naturally to me but at the same time is hard because I have such a strong logical mind, hence the astrology that the Universe designed for me to work with....they knew this was my way in to spirit. Oh how smart they are! Always :)

PYS: Who inspires you?

Danielle: Katie Dalebout inspires me so much! This girl is wise beyond her years and just published her book, Let it Out! She is such a connector, wise soul, and someone that we will be hearing her name about for years to come. She's only just gotten started!!! Love that girl!

Goddess Rising: Meagan Ruppert

Every week, we get to share this space with an incredible woman from the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our chance to connect and collaborate with some amazing ladies from around the world as they follow their passion. This Wednesday, we got Meagan Ruppert, founder of Return to Roots Gathering and Ascending Circles, to share with us.

I am a visionary business coach and the founder of Return to Roots Gathering, a hoop dance, yoga, flow arts, and music festival that creates a space for conscious, spiritual, and community transformation.

My awakening happened when I discovered hoop dance in 2008. The empowerment and self-love that came out of my hoop practice inspired me to start Return to Roots Gathering in 2011. While I had no production experience, nor any professional connections that did either, I took action in faith – knowing that this project was much bigger than myself and that I would be divinely guided through the process. Now in it’s 5th year, this event was one of the first East Coast Transformational Festival, drawing people from around the world.

In addition to producing Return to Roots Gathering, I am a business coach for conscious entrepreneurs in my business, Ascending Circles. My purpose on this planet is to inspire awakened beings to take bold action in their lives and in the world through entrepreneurship and to be ambassadors of the evolving consciousness on planet earth, so that they can create their ultimate reality.

Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Meagan Ruppert: For me, my work is simply an extension of my spirit. The work I do is me fulfilling soul purpose. Building a successful business requires FAITH and so each time I take a giant leap forward, I am trusting that all will fall into place, which it almost always does. :)

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Meagan: Oh gosh. Haha - every time a crack happens my business grows leaps and bounds as a result. I've been transitioning through one the last 6-8 weeks, so I'm excited to see how it develops. ;)

The biggest wound I have healed through my work was when I began Return to Roots Gathering. I was on the mend from drug and alcohol dependencies. It was a challenging time for me because I had to admit some pretty intense stuff to myself. Things I'd been pushing deep down with substance. In order to support my transition away from dependency, I began hoop dancing every single day as a means for meditation. I began eating right, connecting deeper with people who lifted me up and inspired me, and taking care of myself on a level I'd never experienced. About 4 months into this process, the idea for creating a space for healing, connection and awakening through hoop dance and movement came through me during my hoop practice. That night Return to Roots Gathering was born. No experience, no connection, nothing. Just a vision. 4 months later, the first event went off beautifully and the event is now going into it's 6th year, maintaining the integrity of healing, connection and awakening. 

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Meagan: My worst habit is consistency. This hinders me because I'll build up momentum and then the momentum falls off because I get sidetracked or move my attention elsewhere. I've improved hugely around this in the last two years to a point where I am able to follow through much longer so I can see thing through to completion. What's worked really well for me is 1) Forgiving myself. Rather than beating myself up for it, which can result in a pity party and not getting back on track for even longer, I now take notice and recommit. I'll do this as many times as I need to in order to see the task or project through to completion. 2) I started training for half marathons. My business coach has a program that has clients on a training plan for running 13.1 miles. I was never a runner but I saw how following through on a plan could help. What I learned was that I could see my patterns through my training. Finishing the daily assigned work outs helped me to get better at getting my work done and staying on it. When I would run 8 miles, I couldn't just stop at mile 7 and go do something else. I had to run that last mile so I could get home! So this mindset did translate over to my business. 

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Meagan: Don't try to do it alone. Get a mentor or find a mastermind group to support you through it. Until I hired a mentor, my success was mediocre. My stuff was sticking but it wasn't paying the bills - literally and figuratively. I spent many years DIY'ing my business, so I experienced a lot of trial and error. It was REALLY hard and I definitely wasted a lot of time stuck because of my mindset. Invest in yourself and don't let your self-doubt keep you from showing up. Your works is SO IMPORTANT in this world but it won't make a difference if you don't step into your power and potential. 

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Meagan: On a good day my practice is meditation first thing upon waking then an hour of yoga, hooping and dance. On other days, it's just a short meditation in the morning, 15 minutes of stretching. Every day I try to take random 1 minute breaks to breathe and reconnect with my heart so I can stay in alignment with my WHY. And also, I'll throw on some music and shake it out so my energy doesn't get stagnant. Movement is my medicine. :)

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Meagan: Definitely. The story I shared about the beginning of Return to Roots was definitely the opening up to the shadows I'd been keeping deep down below. I stifled my uniqueness to fit into a mold and "be normal". I hid the truth of who I was because I wanted to be accepted by people. Even the realization of drug and alcohol addiction alone was dark. But bringing this stuff to the surface, though hard, was a process of lightening my load. Today, I am moving through fears around intimacy. This goes deeper than just sex. It's intimacy with self, with work, with friends and so on. I am opening up to getting closer. I am a Pisces and so I tend to hang out in the ethers and not let a lot of people in because I don't want to be judged by them, be accountable to them, . I see how this hinders me and I see how this was a defense mechanism to protect me in the past when people did judge me for being different. Getting vulnerable and allowing people to see the WHOLE me has been scary and liberating at the same time. I'm enjoying the process!

PYS: Who inspires you?

Meagan: SO MANY PEOPLE. I love watching women step into power more an more as the days progress. But if you are looking for your next interviewee, I would say Prema Lee Gureri. She's an amazing woman! She's a Vedic Astrologer and coach. She's my soul mentor and I think she'd be a great fit!

Goddess Rising: Heather Waxman

Every week, we are so incredibly blessed to share this space with some of the incredible women from the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our chance to connect and collaborate with some amazing ladies from around the world as they follow their passion. This Wednesday, we are pleased to welcome Heather Waxman to the blog!

Hi! My name is Heather Waxman and really, I am a truth-seeker. In myself, in everything I do, and in everyone I meet, I seek truth. Deep, but true. In the professional realm, I am an Amazon best-selling author, spiritual life coach, meditation guide, and singer-songwriter. My super power is helping women unpack and transform their emotional + behavioral patterns through spiritual practice, song, and meditation. It is my heartfelt belief that when we can clean up our thoughts and clean up our energy bodies of these subconscious memories and patterns, we can live truly radiant + peaceful lives. 

Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Heather Waxman: My work is always my spiritual tool because it helps me to see myself in the other person, and that amps up my compassion for myself, for my clients, and for my loved ones. What I teach my clients I have healed or am still transforming within myself. My clients are absolute treasures to me, and they inspire me to show up even more fully for myself.

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Heather: We are all cracked. Ha! But seriously...we are. That's what we have in common. That's what we share. We need to have the courage to take off the masks of "I am this" or "I am that" and show up...just as you IN your own energy. That is enough.

My core wounds have inspired every single area of my work. And they continue to. After struggling for 7 years with anorexia nervosa, over-exercising, and binge eating and trying one outpatient treatment form and therapy after another, I was getting nowhere. My soul was crying out for something more. So, I cried and I asked and I was led to commit to a spiritual practice recovery program.

I stumbled my way through and when I finally felt food and body freedom three years later, wrote BODYpeace with my dear friend Kasey Arena, which is our 30-day guidebook to finding lasting peace with food and your body. We used our deep struggles with food and exercise addiction to help those going through it too pair spiritual practice and practical action steps together for a deep, nourishing, and pleasure-filled plan to lasting transformation in your mind and body.

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Heather: Jealousy. When I was younger and all the way through college, I felt like an outcast. I had friends but never had a *core* group of friends that made me feel like I belonged. I was constantly putting on certain masks so that I could be accepted into a certain group, instead of allowing myself to express myself fully as I was. I did the same with my family, taking on the role of "the co-dependent good girl." I was a hot mess, really.

This constant striving to be something I wasn't made me feel like I wasn't good enough and I would inevitably end up resenting someone in my group of friends or family, or idolizing someone and putting them on a pedestal. I went through this nasty cycle of idolizing someone and then hating them - making them special and then making myself special. I did this for 22 years, and I do my best to be patient with myself when it happens. But sometimes, I'm very hard on myself. That being said, I've come light years from where I was and I credit this practice to moving through jealousy:

1.) Activate your awareness.

When I can first become aware of the jealousy, I can allow it to begin to transform.

2.) Feel the jealousy.

This can be the hardest part for me. I can get very hard on myself and judge myself for feeling jealous, which only allows the feeling to persist. I'm working on it.

3.) Allow the jealousy to be a flashlight for you, shining a big spotlight on your own potential.

When I'm jealous of someone, it's because I'm feeling insecure and holding onto a belief that I'm not worthy of having what I admire in someone else. So, I tell myself this mantra: "I believe, I can, I am" and I tell the person who is triggering jealousy in me, "You believe, you can, you are. Thank you."

4.) Forgive yourself.

This is everything. Forgiveness is what sets me free from the chains of that jealousy and resentment and idolatry. I close my eyes, hold my younger self that doesn't feel valued (sometimes she's 6 and sometimes she's 26), and tell her that it's okay to be herself and that she has done nothing wrong. My favorite mantra for this is, "You've done nothing wrong. I forgive you."

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Heather: Let your emotions guide you instead of letting your emotions destroy you.

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Heather: I truly consider my life my spiritual practice BUT there are some more structured things that I do on the daily to keep myself feeling calm, confident and connected.

In the morning, I wake up and make some hot lemon water and then go to my meditation space with my cat (depending on the day, she will sit on my lap).

I'm currently practicing an amazing Kundalini yoga kriya called Morning Kriya, which cleans the energy centers, balances the digestive and nervous systems, and sets the navel center (solar plexus area) so I can be strong, clear-headed, and focused throughout my day. I'll then workout and break a sweat in some form.

I am a devoted Kundalini yogi, so I take another 90 minutes in the middle of the day to practice a full Kundalni yoga kriya. This is really important for me, since I'm constantly interacting with other people's energy fields and working directly on them. My spiritual practice is numero uno. When I do it, I'm me. When I don't, I'm not me.

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Heather: I am a deeply sensitive person, and for so long I would beat myself up and ask myself, "What is wrong with me?" because I could just feel everything so deeply - my own feelings and emotions, the feelings and emotions of others, the energy of the room, the energy of the world in general.

Before I came to committed spiritual practice, I had no idea what was going on inside of me and that's why I turned to addiction. I had to cope somehow, so I coped in the best way that I knew how. I felt so ashamed of being "weak" and feeling things so deeply. I never talked about it. Now, I am proud of being so sensitive and I know it to be my greatest strength. It helps me heal and understand myself and, therefore, be able to understand others and help them heal too. My sensitivity is my compass through life.

PYS: Who inspires you?

Heather: Oh man. Do you have a year? Ha!

I admire people - especially women - who are fierce and graceful truth-seekers. As of late, my teacher Guru Jagat has been my greatest inspiration. She is a remarkable teacher of the technology of Kundalini yoga and endlessly inspires me in how she lives, loves, and leads her life. She shakes me awake every time. Also, my dear friend Devin Harris. She is a devoted mom and healer, and the way she gives of herself, nurtures herself, and cares for her son kind of blows my mind. You should totally interview them both. The incredible musician Tori Kelly is also a massive inspiration of mine. 

Goddess Rising: Sasha Peakall

Every week, we are so incredibly blessed to connect and collaborate with a wonderful woman from around the world who is part of the health, wellness and personal development community. This is our chance to share space here with some of the most inspiring ladies out there as they do great things following their passion.

Sasha Peakall once the queen of overwhelmed biz chicks is a self confessed recovering chronic stress-head and perfectionist turned “Biz Overwhelm Buster” coach for Type A Biz chicks. Since quitting her highly paid (and highly stressful) Marketing Management job for an Australian travel company she has been dedicated to helping entrepreneurial women create their dream businesses without all the stress, overwhelm and burnout that often comes with starting a business.

She mentors women in building solid business foundations, creating marketing systems that free up their time and life schedules that prioritise what is most important to them so they can run a business of freedom and live the lifestyle they truly desire. Supporting the chicks in her “Type A Biz Chicks” Facebook group daily and helping them work through their Facebook Advertising and marketing pickles is what lights her fire!

You can find out more on her website and join her Type A Biz Chicks FB support group here

Passion Yoga School: How do you use your work as a spiritual tool?

Sasha Peakall: I really fell into my current work when I was at a real low. I was questioning my life and my purpose and the decisions I’d made that got me to a place I didn’t want to be. I was doubting myself and I was completely lost. The process of questioning my life, the business I wanted to run and forgiving myself for past failure was a deeply intimate and spiritual process that is a constant in my everyday work.

As an employee I never felt fully in touch with who I was as a person, I always felt held back from my inner potential yet I didn’t know what that inner potential was.

Starting a business was completely liberating. It has been the best lesson in self-discovery and it has opened my eyes and helped me be more aware of my purpose, my strengths and my weakness.

My work on a day to day basis helps me align with what I believe to be my purpose, to be an agent of encouragement to help people discover their inner potential in business and life.

My work helping people build smart marketing strategies and solid business foundations may seem clunky, technical and uninspired but in fact it is so much more holistic than that.

Business success is built on clarity and authenticity and the only way you can truly have that is to truly be in touch with yourself and your soul! That is the first step to building solid business foundations and smart marketing strategies (and is often the piece people are missing from their business equation). 

PYS: The cracks are how the light gets in. Tell us how your core wounds have inspired your work.

Sasha: I am a classic Type A personality, a fierce hard worker, chronic perfectionist and competitive by nature but for as long as I can remember my Type A tendencies has been the thing that has made me mentally and physically suffer.

Since high school I have suffered from chronic stress induced anxiety, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, and insomnia that time and time again leads to prolong illness due to burnout. Call it my own brand of self-sabotage, overworking then paying the price both physically and mentally and yet I couldn’t seem to let go of these habits that got me into trouble time and time again.

It wasn’t until I did Yoga Teacher Training in India that my eyes were open to my own negative patterns, to the fact that it was my choices and tendencies that caused me to be burnout time and time again. I could no longer put it down to a poor immune system and bad lack, I had some control over my body and wellness and I could no longer deny that I had to get serious and make changes in my life and the way I worked.

It was my own journey to let go a little at a time, be mindful of my body and when things were getting too much and to start implementing systems that would help me achieve great things without all the stress that I started to see that I was on to something.

I realised that if I could ease up on my Type A tendencies over time and live a much more calm and content life, so could all those other female entrepreneurs that I saw struggling with the exact same things I was.

I realised that it was my duty to share what I had discovered and support other women on their own journeys to business success without the constant overwhelm, stress and burnout. 

PYS: What is your worst habit and what are you doing to improve it?

Sasha: As a Type A with a lot of ambition I really struggle to stay in the present. I’m always thinking of new ideas, plotting for the future or evaluating what went wrong in the past to improve for the future. It makes me a great innovator and creator however it makes action taking difficult as I often get stuck on what I’m working on in the present because I’m so focused on the future.

Every day is a battle to be more present and it’s something I’m a long way off mastering. Through Yoga, meditation and just general awareness I am trying to be far more mindful of when I fall into this future/past fixating patterns and bring myself back into the present. 

PYS: What advice would you offer to other goddesses working to actualize their potential?

Sasha: What I have seen in myself and with so many of the women I work with is that we are so kind and forgiving to all those around us, but when it comes to ourselves we are harsh and unforgiving.

We get into these cycles of beating ourselves up, talking ourselves down and questioning our abilities and talents.

We view failure as the worst case scenario that we should be punished for not a tool for growth.

As goddesses we need to give ourselves the same forgiveness and compassion that all this time we have reserved for others.

We need to pat ourselves on the back when things don’t go according to plan because at least we took action! After all, failure can only come with action and imperfect action is at least progress!

We need to be kind to ourselves, acknowledge our wins however small and remind ourselves that we are goddesses in the first place!

PYS: What does your daily spiritual practice look like?

Sasha: I have always been a lousy meditator, sitting still and trying to be aware somehow always becomes the time when my mind is most rational and a mini business planning session in my mind begins…not exactly a recipe for being present!

But, when I’m out in nature, (which I try to do daily) walking or cycling that is when I find myself most mindful, fully present in the moment, content with my life, a feeling a reprieve from the chaos of running a business.

There is nothing quite like like the breeze caressing your face, birds singing soulfully, the scent of nature wafting up your nostrils to forget the troubles of the modern world and feel at one with the universe!

It’s so important to find YOUR way of connecting with the world on a deeper level, whether it be through mediation, Yoga, being out in nature, dancing, singing, or even just savouring every delicious bite of the food you eat. Making time daily to be spiritual will not only save your sanity, it will help you skyrocket you business to success!

PYS: What secrets (past or present) have kept you from living in your truth?

Sasha: I’ve always come across as confident and self-assured at what I do…but beneath that has always been a person with a trembling fear that she’s not good enough. That she doesn’t have everything that it takes.

I think it goes way back to being 7 when I had difficulties reading and was way behind the other kids in my class. I didn’t want to be “that girl” who couldn’t read so I fought my way up, eventually to the top of the class. But, all that time, despite my hard work I felt like a phoney, I thought at any moment someone would discover that I was not smart at all, in fact I was really dumb.

That childhood feeling of “not being enough” has always stuck with me.

The irony is that I’ve always had a talent for helping people realise they’re own strengths, increase their confidence and help them make smart decisions out of clarity not fear of being less than someone else.

Curating confidence is a daily battle and it is why I now practice and advocate celebrating your wins however small on a daily basis! It is only through recognising when you get stuff right, rather then fixating on everything that goes wrong that you can truly see progress, feel confident and content.

PYS: Who inspires you?

Sasha: My husband is my biggest inspiration. He is my rock that keeps me centred, while I'm such a future thinker, he is grounded in the present and pulls me back in when I wallow in things I have no control over. Every "Type A" needs a person like that in their life!