Entries organized under Collective Care

Alexandra Franzen: Collective Care Interview Series

February 15, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Alexandra Franzen!

Alexandra Franzen on the beauty of discipline and her motto- -Today is not over.- Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Alexandra, take it away!

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I’ve been a professional writer for about 10 years. I write about lots of topics – creativity, motivation, personal growth, relationships, and love, for starters. I write novels, personal stories, and essays – plus lots of articles, speeches, and educational materials that various clients/companies hire me to do.

As a writer, one of the messages that echoes continually through my work is: “TODAY IS NOT OVER YET.” It’s a message that I want to share, and share, and share, in a thousand different ways, with as many people as possible. It’s a message that I often need to hear, and re-hear, myself.

No matter what time it is, and no matter how badly your day has gone so far, it is NEVER too late to do something kind, creative, and beautiful for yourself, or for someone else. It’s never too late to turn things around. It’s never too late to create a positive ripple effect in the world. It’s never too late to write one “thank you” note, or drink a glass of water, or exercise for 5 minutes, or call your mom for a long-overdue chat. Things can change right now… if you say so.

I try to model the “TINOY” message through my writing, but also through my daily actions. It’s a mantra that I say to myself, almost every single day!

What challenges your heart in that journey?

Feeling overscheduled and overwhelmed. If I feel like I’m drowning in too many projects, I start to wither inside.

What inspires you to keep going?

That feeling I get when an email pops into my inbox and someone says, “You don’t know me, but I love your writing, and that one thing you said really made my day better…” I love those moments. Knowing that I’m “helping” someone, even just one person, feels so incredible. That’s my fuel to keep going.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

I’m a simple gal! I love the basics: sleep, sex, water, good food, a long sweaty run or weight lifting session, or a walk through the woods. If I’ve got the basics handled, I typically feel pretty terrific.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

I invest in services that make my life awesomer. For example, I hire a housekeeper to “deep clean” my bathroom and kitchen every other month or so. I pay (happily) for yoga and fitness classes at beautiful studios. I hired a professional accountant this year (finally!) and that has cleared a lot of stress out of my life. Everyone needs a “village,” you know?

Also, I’m blessed with a small, tight-knit group of friends who support me 100% and genuinely want me to succeed with all of my goals, and vice versa. I have about 5 peeps that I can email any day, any time, and I know that whatever I say, they’re going to respond with, “We believe in you and we love you.” I’m so grateful for those relationships. I couldn’t make it without ’em.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Be focused and disciplined. If your goal is to write one “thank you” note per week, schedule the time and really do it. If your goal is to launch an after-school mentoring program for kids, schedule the time and really do it.

The word “discipline” sometimes gets a bad reputation, but I think it’s a beautiful word. It’s like devotion. It’s like meditation. Apply yourself seriously and wholeheartedly to whatever task you’ve chosen. Focus and do it. You’ll feel so proud of yourself for keeping the promises that you’ve made to yourself and to the world.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

I want to live in a world where… emails are short, love letters are long, and people stare into each others’ eyes instead of just smartphones screens. Heaven, right?

About Alexandra:

Alexandra Franzen is a writer based in Portland, Oregon. She lives with her partner Brandon and a very pretty fish named RuPaul.

How to connect:

AlexandraFranzen.com

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Jennifer Louden: Collective Care Interview Series

February 8, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Jennifer Louden!

Jennifer Louden on being a relentless cheerleader and helping women get into and stay into action. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Jennifer, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

Leading women to own their knowledge, talents, and desires and bring them into the world. Helping women get into and stay into action. Especially writers and creative business owners.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

Feeling that I am not doing the best job I can teaching and leading or otherwise women would not keep hiding and doubting themselves. It’s really hard when I see women not doing what they said they wanted year after year.

Social media makes it easy to see students leaving me to study with one teacher after another but the book still doesn’t get written. I understand life gets in the way for us all but I want so much for women to realize their desires.

What inspires you to keep going?

I can’t help it. I often wish I could. I would much rather be a novelist and run trails and nap. But this cheerleader in me will not lie down and shut up.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

I have a group of peers I have met with virtually and in person for going on 10- years. I also have lots of friends who do similar work so we can compare notes. I do things that have nothing to do with my work – make art messes, run, read whatever I want, be a mom, have friends with straight jobs, volunteer.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

See above. Also I have this friend who turned me onto running, Jabe. She inspires me so much. Also the community I lead, the Oasis, those women really inspire me, too.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

It may not take the form you want – there is often a thing that springs from us that we cannot help but offer even though we wish we could. It may not be about you being the front man or woman – you might find yourself being a cog in a bigger machine. It must include you doing inner work so you are not foisting your vision of what people need on them. It need not mean poverty!

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

I believe if we could motivate everyone who cares to be active politically we could right this listing ship pretty quickly because more people care about fairness, justice, and peace than don’t. So my picture is one of political action, steady, sure, and fierce when needed.

About Jennifer:

Jen Louden is an author, a teacher and a full fledged ambassador for helping creative women get their scary sh*t done. For over 26 years Jen has taught millions of women through her books, communities and writing retreats how to create human-scaled routines that support the creation of extraordinary lives.

How to connect:

http://jenniferlouden.com/

http://jenniferlouden.com/2017-guide

http://jenniferlouden.com/your-creative-desire/

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Kathleen Shannon: Collective Care Interview Series

February 1, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Kathleen Shannon!

Kathleen Shannon on adventure, collaboration, being boss and business besties. Read the Collective Care interview! -- www.christytending.com

 

Kathleen, take it away!

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

Wow, it feels a little ambitious to state that I’m changing the world, but if I’m really “owning it” I’d say I’m changing the world with my podcast Being Boss. I show up with my co-host Emily Thompson every week to share stories, insights, and struggles on how to be a working creative entrepreneur.

We share personal stories and share insights on how to cultivate confidence, develop productive habits & routines, make and manage your money, and establish working boundaries so you can be more boss. And we share all of that through the lens of being who you are 100% of the time (in work & life) and making money doing what you love.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

The biggest challenge I’m facing lately is being myself 100% of the time even as my audience grows. When I become aware of how many people are tuning in I become almost paralyzed thinking I might say something hurtful or offensive.

For example, I was recently asked how to be more comfortable during a photoshoot and I flippantly joked that a glass of wine always helps me. I apparently offended a few listeners who stopped turning in and said my words were irresponsible.

I stand behind what I said. (Because I do like a glass of wine before a shoot!) But am also challenged by the fact that being authentically who I am means giving people permission to not like what I have to say.

What inspires you to keep going?

While I want to say something like “The amazing emails we get from fans who have quit their day jobs or are finally paying the bills with their creative career” the truth is I just really love what I do. Being able to express myself through conversations with my business bestie, getting to interview the most talented creatives and experts out there, and being able to have fun conversations for a living is pretty awesome.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

Travel and adventure always brings me back to myself.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

I’ve learned that community and relationships are what life is all about. Connecting with other creatives is how I find meaning in my own work. Connecting with my family is how I find meaning in my own life. The “it’s not just me” conversations and the “let’s try this!” collaborations are what nourish my soul.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

This is going to sound counter-intuitive but if you want to make a difference you need to be selfish. Do what you truly love (for yourself!) and it will make an impact and difference for those around you. Honestly.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

Oh wow. I think a lot about how if everyone was doing what they were best at we’d have a much happier and diverse world. There wouldn’t be wage gaps, wars, or hunger if we were all able to live our values and do what we were put on earth to create.

About Kathleen:

Kathleen Shannon is the co-host of the Being Boss Podcast and co-owner of Braid Creative & Consulting. She lives in Oklahoma City with her husband and their toddler, Fox.

How to connect:

beingboss.club

http://www.braidcreative.com/

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Pleasance Silicki: Collective Care Interview Series

January 25, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Pleasance Silicki!

Pleasance Silicki on caring for others and being cared for in return, and making it sustainable. Read the Collective Care interview! -- www.christytending.com

Pleasance, take it away…

How are you changing the world? (What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I teach, support, mentor, and work with women & families on topics such as wellness, self care, relaxation, yoga and meditation. I’m obsessed with living a good, joyful, playful life and sharing all I know and learn along the way with others. I uplift.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

Oh man, I’m SO sensitive and caring that my heart gets hurt for others, my heart aches for people who suffer. But, over the past few years I have learned how important boundaries and self care are in my journey as a helper and healer.

My challenge is to stay true with what I know, feel, believe and who I am in the process as I evolve and change, and my students do. Staying present, staying connected. It’s a challenge but one I don’t want to live without!

What inspires you to keep going?

Of course, my children, life, the trees, nature, breathing, dancing, creating, reading, sharing, my students and community, my grandma (who rocks), my resiliency and grit, life itself.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process? What nourishes and replenishes you?

I take my practices for care very seriously – in that I go to bed early, I rise early. Baths with epsom salts and doTerra oils, I move my body as much as I can.

I learned how to love eating healthy. I grew up on Spam and Fast Food. So now that I love kale and roasted veggies and tahini and all these healthy foods, it blows my mind. But it makes me feel so good!

I read every day. I open my heart every day. I try to help someone every day. I live my own life as a way to tend to my heart – not do what others think I should – I have left careers that were not serving me.

How do you experience care within community? How do others support you in your journey and practice?

Oh man, I love to care for others AND be cared for. What an art, giving and receiving. I notice a lot of mamas are not good at asking for help or accepting it – so it feels so nice to let “doing it all” go.

I reach out and cry with my friends all the time. I love having my girls around me. I love being with people who matter to me – and I’m always looking for ways to connect live with other humans – in meaningful and powerful ways.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Please, please, savor and value your own energy. If you burn out, we won’t have you. If you do too much or overextend, it won’t be sustainable.

Please take good care. You are a gift to this world.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

People mindfully aware that we are all different AND in those unique qualities and variations- there is respect, love, warmth and compassion. That we can hold space for hard things and for joy. That we can tend to our own gardens. That our culture begins to truly, magically appreciate the souls of humans, the beings that we are (not the doings).

That we can re-align the values systems to be people, life, art, music, joy first. And move the technology and the working so much to a bit lower priority. Simplicity. Neighbors helping and being with neighbors.

Children learning from spacious well rested parents. Healthy food, yoga and movement classes available to all (kids and teens and seniors too!), in an affordable and acceptable way. Now that to me is just delicious.

About Pleasance:

Pleasance Silicki is an author, mama, creator, yogi & teacher who is passionate about women, wisdom and wellness. She is the founder of lil omm, a community of engaged and inspired women who actively share and use well being practices to enrich and empower their sacred ordinary lives.

How to connect:

lilomm.com

lilommlife.com

Also:

Connected posts, past interviews, guest posts of theirs, etc.

Michelle Ward: Collective Care Interview Series

January 18, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Michelle Ward!

Michelle Ward on putting aside the Vampire Voices, quitting your soul-sucking job, and leading with love.. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Michelle, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I help creative women discover and launch their dream businesses. It’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.

(Also, I’ve helped raise $90K for breast cancer research & treatment through my Avon Walk team in the past 5 years. I’m proud of both of these things.)

What challenges your heart in that journey?

That it’s never enough. I always want to do All The Things and make All The Difference to All The People. It’s been tough to slow myself down, take care of me, and realize that what I’m doing is “enough” to put some good into this world.

What inspires you to keep going?

My own dreams & the goals my family has. We want to spend our time in certain ways and have a particular lifestyle that I’m always looking to support, grow and tend to.

Also: My clients, for sure. To be privy to their biggest dreams and deepest fears is something I hold to be very special, and it honors and humbles me. To see them, too, launch that business and land that first client and quit their soul-sucking jobs… it makes my heart burst each and every time.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

Baths. Naps. Runs. Reading for pleasure. Meditating. Journaling. Art journaling. Sun salutations. Essential oils in my diffuser. Deep breaths.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

Ohmygosh, does it ever take a village. I have so many Internet Friends who are there for my freak-outs and questions, who hold space for me and cheerlead me on. I could not do this without them, or without the support and care of my family, or without the practical help my co-working / day care space gives me.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Put aside the Vampire Voices (those are the ones sucking the good stuff out of you) that are telling you that your dream is too big, too silly, too unrealistic, too superficial. Instead, replace “No” or “Not now” or “I don’t think so, buddy” with “How?” Take one small step today, and another tomorrow, and another the next day. Baby steps build a small foundation.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

Not to get political, but one where love really does trump hate. It hurts my heart to think of all the pain in this country that led to Trump being elected (even though most American voters didn’t agree with his diatribe). If we lead with love, compassion, acceptance and inclusion – looking out for each other, giving generously of our time and money and gifts, taking action daily – then we’ll lift each other up instead of selfishly pull each other down.

About Michelle:

Michelle Ward, PCC, has been offering dream career guidance for creative women as The When I Grow Up Coach since 2008. You may have seen or heard her in New York MagazineThe Huffington PostEtsyNewsweekFreelancers Union, the Forbes Top 100 Websites for your Career List or 100+ other media outlets.

How to connect:

http://www.whenigrowupcoach.com

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Esmé Weijun Wang: Collective Care Interview Series

January 4, 2017

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Esmé Weijun Wang!

Esmé Weijun Wang on ambition & living with limitations and beautiful, generous acts. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Esmé, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

Through writing, mostly, in order to put words to things that aren’t easily or frequently expressed–to help people feel less alone, yes, but to also expand people’s understanding of what exists, of what’s possible. I write books. My debut novel, The Border of Paradise, came out this year, and I have an essay collection about schizophrenia coming out in 2018. I write journalism and personal essays, usually about mental illness or chronic illness.

I also make resources for ambitious people living with limitations. That’s what esmewang.com is about. I provide blog posts, online courses, a free email series of encouraging notes, and so forth; I live with disabling chronic illness, and I know what it’s like to have big dreams and to be afraid that they’re not possible. I work to help people reimagine their circumstances and to work within their constraints.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

Fear, absolutely. I could say illness, but the illness is outsized by fear of losing my capabilities. I’m afraid of despair; despair challenges my heart.

What inspires you to keep going?

The people who tell me that I changed their lives. A woman once wrote to say that she’d read an essay of mine and that it allowed her to understand her schizophrenic father, who was recently deceased. She’d been afraid that she would never be able to understand him, was devastated by his death, and by some miracle, my writing gave that understanding to her. I receive notes and letters and emails that share similar stories. It’s a blessing that surprises me every time.

I have a print on the wall of my office that says, I want to inspire others; I want someone to look at me and say, Because of you, I didn’t give up.

I also have an intense drive for excellence. I’m ferociously ambitious, for better or worse.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

Things that support me: my husband and dog; friends; glasses of water; my spiritual practice; books; rest; therapy; my own method of restorative journaling; writing; beautiful things of all kinds.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

I helm a private Facebook group that’s associated with the Encouragement Notes; it’s almost 500 people strong now.The people in it call themselves Encouragers, appropriately. And that’s a supportive, generous community that I love.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Life is fragile. Show more love, including toward yourself.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

It’s hard for me to imagine a sort of utopia this way. What is more useful to me is to think of every beautiful, generous act I’ve witnessed. That’s the backbone of that compassionate world and future to me.

About Esmé:

Esmé Weijun Wang is the award-winning author of The Border of Paradise: A Novel, with a forthcoming essay collection about schizophrenia. At esmewang.com, she provides resources for ambitious people who live with limitations.

How to connect:

http://www.esmewang.com/

http://www.esmewang.com/offerings

http://www.elle.com/life-love/a35930/chronically-ill-afraid-lazy/

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Laura Gaskill: Collective Care Interview Series

December 20, 2016

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Laura Gaskill!

Laura Gaskill on mindfulness, embracing your inner introvert, and sustainable giving. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Laura, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I teach e-courses in mindful clutter clearing and intentional living, where my aim is to help people make more space in their homes and lives, unearth their treasures, and begin listening to the soft voice of our heart, that can so often get drowned out by the “noise” of everyday life. I’m also a writer and mom, and when I’m not working with my online students, I am trying to provide lots of room to explore + create, both for myself and my family.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

I love the flexibility that working online & freelance gives me, but it also means I have frequent deadlines – and since I’m a one-person business, if I’m sick (or someone in my family is sick) or something else comes up, it can feel really stressful to stay on top of everything. And I always have way more ideas than energy! Sometimes I really wish I could wave a magic wand and get things done without having to do all the legwork myself.

What inspires you to keep going?

Oh, positive comments from my students and readers, for sure! When I get an email from someone saying that I have inspired them to make a positive change in their life, that just takes the cake. And I am constantly inspired by my son – he is a boundless ball of energy, and keeps me on my toes, but I feel really lucky to be in a line of work currently where I can be there to take him to school and pick him up every day.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

I’ve learned to embrace my introvert nature – l need lots of solo, quiet time to feel my best. I love nothing more than a Saturday morning in bed with a big mug of coffee, my journal & pens, and a fresh stack of inspiring books and magazines. If I can get that once a week, all’s well in the world! During my workday, I take lots of tea breaks, and I try to take a walk most days – I live near the beach, so there’s a nice walking path there. In the evenings, I put the screens away and read, write in my journal, and often do a bit of yoga and sip some herbal tea to help unwind.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

After seven years living on the opposite coast, I feel really lucky to be living in the same town as two of my oldest, best girlfriends. We see each other at least once a week for tea dates, to try a new class (ballet, pilates, yoga…), dinner with our families, and sometimes just sneaking out for a quick glass of wine after all the kids are asleep. I also have made some really lovely, supportive friends online – some of whom I’ve also met in person – so when it comes to work-related matters, I really lean on my online network for support. And my husband totally gets me – if I need extra R&R, he’s happy to take our son Bixby out to a park for a few hours so I can have some peace.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Give in a way that feels sustainable to you – some people are built for working with others directly, but if you are an introvert (like me!), being “out there” in the world, working with people one-on-one can be really exhausting and depleting, especially if you’re doing it full time. I used to be a teacher, and I loved it, but at the end of the day I would feel completely drained, with zero energy left for myself or my family. Give from your heart, but know yourself: there are many ways to make a difference, including lots that can be done behind the scenes.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

I am an optimist at heart, and I really do believe that the future will be a better place. I see a transformation in the way the world uses energy, and a shift to more sustainable housing and a more community-centered way of living. In my dreamworld, I would love nothing more than to live on a farm with all of my best friends and our families, each with our own sweet little cottage, and some shared space for making art, music, and playing and celebrating together.

About Laura:

Laura Gaskill is a writer, mom, and creative soul based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She teaches e-courses on mindful clutter clearing and living with intention, fueled in large part by pots of tea and scones with cream at her favorite cafe.

How to connect:

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Tami Hackbarth: Collective Care Interview Series

December 19, 2016

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Tami Hackbarth!

Tami Hackbarth on 100% guilt-free self-care and moving through the world as complete beings. Read the Collective Care interview! -- www.christytending.com

Tami is a kindred spirit, and it’s deeply comforting for me to know that there are powerful women like her in the world busting myths about self-care. (Hint: it’s not selfish!) I also so appreciate her perspective on that moment of “Me too!” recognition. 🙂

Tami, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I teach 100% guilt-free self-care to busy women who want to drop the story that self-care is selfish and start feeling powerful and strong as the leader in their own life.

I am also mama to a six year old super hero who has inspired me to take care of my business so that I don’t end up handing her my baggage.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

So many women are stuck in the story that either self-care is selfish or they are somehow broken and can’t be fixed. What most don’t realize is that self-sacrifice is not helping them or their families. And everyone has their thing. And we can all be whole – if we stop running from whatever we think is so terrible about ourselves. Self-acceptance is key.

What inspires you to keep going?

My daughter.

I want her to live in a world where women are free to be the superstars they were born to be.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

My self-care includes a self-compassion practice, a gratitude practice, a meditation practice and a restorative yoga practice among others. I love being in community with like-minded women and the last few years solitude has also been my friend. I spend a lot of time reading for pleasure, cooking plant based meals to nourish my body and writing to know how I feel about things.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

Listening to other women’s stories and experiencing that moment of “YES, not just me!” – even if it terrible, at least I am not alone. There really is strength in sharing stories and supporting each other’s growth.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Take care of your business first – all those loose ends you hope no one notices – take care of them. Whatever you dread, take care of it: make the phone call, end the relationship, mend the relationship, stop hurting yourself, find allies, quit your job, get divorced, figure it out. Once you feel whole – when you stop running from all those things you are trying to keep a secret, you will know what your place is in the world and you will be in a much better place to help others.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

When we all start taking care of our business, we move through the world as complete beings. When we fill our ourselves with what we need: love, compassion, nourishment, connection, sleep, rest, play – when we tend to ourselves deeply and completely. then we are able to be of service to others. When bad things happen (because they do) we will be able to tend to those in need of help without losing ourselves. In this world, the children learn this by watching their parents. It is completely natural for all the adults to tend to themselves in order to best tend for their kids. The resentment and culture of scarcity disappear because we all feel whole at last.

About Tami:

I teach 100% guilt-free self-care to women who want to drop the story that self-care is selfish so they can start feeling powerful and strong as the leader in their own lives.

How to connect:

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Isabella Zizi: Collective Care Interview Series

December 16, 2016

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Isabella Zizi!

Isabella Zizi of Idle No More (SF Bay) on listening to elders, sticking to her roots, and speaking from the heart. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

I met Isabella through local climate justice work, and our organizations frequently partner together. She manages to be delightfully positive and incredibly powerful, all in the same moment. She is an incredible leader and it is an honor to organize alongside her in the spirit of climate justice, Indigenous sovereignty, and a livable future for all beings.

Isabella, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I have been giving the instructions and opportunity to use my voice, and to speak from my heart what is most important for me and that is to make sure that the human race steps away from the fossil fuel industry and starts to focus more on natural resources that Mother Earth has to offer us.

As a young indigenous woman in today’s society I understand the importance for sticking to my cultural roots and helping others understand the importance of respecting all indigenous rights and listening to those who feel a closer connection to Mother Earth and make sure that our future generations can live in a way where we have clean air, water and soil.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

The challenges I face are the big corporations and people of power in offices who simply deny climate change and only focus on the profit they make off of these industries.

We need to help shift their minds to understand life is not about the money it is about living, breathing, and appreciating the only earth and the only life that we have to offer and to use it to the best of our ability in a respectful and meaningful way.

What inspires you to keep going?

The children, the unborn, and those who cannot speak up for themselves (plants, animals, air, etc) it has became my duty to make sure that I speak up for our younger generation.

I help those who seem like they have lost all hope in humanity, to understand we have not yet given up, we will continue to be resilient as our ancestors did to make sure we are heard, who that we can live free, and we can continue this beautiful journey and pass it on to the next generation.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

I understand that I am only capable of doing so much, and what helps tend myself is simply rest. Health is always top priority. If I feel stressed or anxiety, I simply disconnect from organizing and focus on my mind body and spirit.

Whether it is meditating or simply escaping for a few days away from the city, my mind is not distracted from the continuous work that is needed to be done, it is a time to focus on myself.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

In my indigenous community, it is very uplifting and encouraging hearing from the elders. I appreciate all of the stories they share, the different life experiences they had to face, and the dedication in their hearts. I always look up to the elders for advice and knowledge because they have already been through it, and I feel it is so important to keep that intergenerational connection strong.

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

Continue to be respectful and mindful for cultures, religions, and practices. The best advice I can give is speak and act from your heart. Do it with love and continue to share the love with the work that you are involved in.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

I imagine a world without the fossil fuel industry.I imagine the children, the mothers, and friends playing in the clean waters, digging in the soil harvesting everything that they grew, and everything having an even balance.

I imagine that people only see from what’s inside. I imagine that we as people can live without a government or a system telling us how we need to live our lives, as we are able to come together in agreement of peace, love, acceptance, and respect for one another, the land, our waters, and ourselves.

About Isabella:

Isabella Zizi is 22 years old, Northern Cheyenne Arikara (Uh-rick-uh-raw) and Muskogee Creek, and lives in Richmond California. She is a member of Idle No More SF Bay, and has helped organize many actions including refinery healing walks, supporting local indigenous rights, and support for Standing Rock in the Bay Area. She is also youth director for Earth Guardians Bay Area, which encourages youth to take on leadership roles within their community and to get involved and educated around environmental and social justice issues.

How to connect:

Idle No More SF Bay Facebook: Idlenomoresfbay.org
Earth guardians Bay Area Facebook: Earthguardians.org

More about Isabella’s work:

https://www.facebook.com/MenomanSound/videos/10207993704944856/
https://www.facebook.com/INMSolidaritySF/posts/1423233481055305
https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=246691

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?

Sarah Von Bargen: Collective Care Interview Series

December 15, 2016

Collective Care is a written interview series with people who are changing the world. Most often, these folks are working at the intersection of creative, healing, and/or activist work.

I’m in love with the idea of amplifying the work (and self-care practices) of people who are building a more compassionate world. In this series, I get to chat with people who inspire me like whoa.

Today we get to meet Sarah von Bargen!

Sarah Von Bargen on getting clear on what makes us happy and telling people things in a way they can hear. Read the Collective Care interview! >> www.christytending.com

Sarah is one of my biggest Internet friend-crushes, and writes one of the most useful and fun-to-read blogs ever. Her advice is always incredibly practical, yet also unique from what anyone else is offering, because she’s never anything less than completely herself.

Sarah, take it away…

How are you changing the world?

(What is your change-making, healing, and/or creative work? This might be paid, unpaid or a combination.)

I’m helping people change the way they think about how they spend their time, money, and energy. Most of us don’t need to earn more money to have the life we want. We just need to get really clear on what makes us happy, where our money is going, and why it’s going in that direction.

What challenges your heart in that journey?

I approach money and happiness in a way that runs counter to a lot of long-held, deeply internalized, socially-accepted beliefs. It can sometimes feel like I’m starting in the negative integers just to get people to consider that more money doesn’t necessarily equal more happiness.

What inspires you to keep going?

The amazing results I’ve seen in my own life and the lives of my students when they do, actually, make that leap. I know that – for the right people – this work can be transformative, once they’re willing to open their mind to a new way of thinking about money and happiness.

How do you support yourself or tend to yourself and your heart in that process?

What nourishes and replenishes you?

I work pretty strict hours. It’s rare that I’m working before 8 am or after 5 pm. I outsource things I don’t like or don’t understand. I know what makes me happy so I make sure to schedule lots of those things into my calendar.

How do you experience care within community?

How do others support you in your journey and practice?

I’m part of three different “High Powered Lady Groups” (my words, not theirs!) We get together once a month and talk about our struggles, triumphs, share resources, etc. They’re invaluable!

What’s your best piece of advice you have for people who want to make a difference?

You need to tell people things in a way they can hear. If your people don’t read blogs, maybe you need a podcast. If your people don’t respond well to high brow, philosophical flights of fancy, maybe you need to give them super basic, step-by-step instructions. Meet your people where they are and speak to them in a language they appreciate and connect to.

Paint us a picture of the more compassionate world and future you imagine.

Everyone treats one another with respect and compassion. Wouldn’t that change, well, pretty much everything?

About Sarah:

Sarah Von Bargen is a teacher and writer who explores money, happiness, and living your life on purpose. She blogs most days at Yesandyes.org and if she’s not on the internet she’s eating cheese or on a roadtrip or watching late-90s tv shows with her very patient husband.

How to connect:

https://twitter.com/yesandyesblog

https://www.facebook.com/yesandyesblog/

https://instagram.com/yesandyesblog

https://www.pinterest.com/yesandyesblog/

Related:

You can find all of the Collective Care interviews right here!

Post: What is Collective Care?