Dreams, Health & a happy dance

Keep alive the dream; for as long as a woman has a dream in her heart she cannot lose the significance of living.

– Howard Thurman

This week I’ve been on a major marketing push to support my sister’s storefront launch for her green smoothie shop. We woke up this morning to the news that she made her $8,000 goal via her kickstarter campaign. So first off let me say…

thank-you

We had over 100 people donate amounts ranging from literally $1 to $2,000. It was an amazing experience to see how folks from our family, our neighborhoods, our workplaces, our Facebook friends and even folks who didn’t know Andrea from David Neale, give to support her vision: to make healthy food fast and revolutionize an entire industry.

A month ago, when Andrea said she was going to raise $8k many of us in the family (well…actually all of us) were like “umm, seriously?” But I’m so glad she didn’t listen to our doubt. She focused on what her heart was telling her was possible. And its shocked all of us to re-evaluate the limitations we hold ourselves to everyday. Like the way our dad was hoping to fly out to San Fran to help her set up the shop before the opening on the 20th. Two weeks ago he didn’t have the money for airfare, now he’s discovered a way, commenting “I’m riding on the miraculous-ness of everything else GreenLid is becoming.”

Yes, it is sort of miraculous.

But at the same time it’s not.

I know my sister, and I know the deep internal and spiritual work she’s done over the past year that has enabled her to trust this dream. To trust it’s magnificent unfolding. To trust that whatever way it blooms is perfect for her development into more of who she really is. She doing the work, as Iyanla Vanzant encourages. Her commitment to self-improvement and faith in the unseen is the reason this journey has felt so AWE-mazing. Considering she launched this business a year ago in Washington DC at a neighborhood festival and is now opening a storefront in San Fransisco utilizing this new gifting economic system (like this Ted Talk on designing business on generosity, you gotta watch!) … is only the beginning.

And so today we celebrate her. With happy dances, green smoothies, cheers and applause.

peace lives in the dream.

Heal My Self = Heal My Life

This message has been simmering for awhile, b/c it’s even more transparent than I usually am. If you are follow me, you know I don’t hesitate to show my scars, my mistakes and my issues. Yet obviously, there’s a cap on that public category of “Nina News.” Yet, I hear so much from your posts, comments and yes, even real face-to-face conversations I sometimes have with ya’ll, that I’m noticing this low-level anxiety about much of your life. And this goes not only for the Americans, though it’s certainly predominate in our culture. We’re so concerned about environmental degradation, health malfunction, job complaints, or family stress. I can no longer blame Facebook for being an amplifier of this collective negative story that life has us all victimized. FB is only reflecting back what we are thinking/talking/acting about.worried-earth-illustration-thumb8395865

So I wanted to offer one story from my life that helped to change the course of my thinking trajectory, consequentially impacting every single aspect of my life. And before you shrug off my note as more New Age mumbo jumbo and baseless “positive thinking” as irrational optimism, I invite you to consider that you are reading this because there is a part of you that KNOWS:

Life is supposed to feel good.

During the spring semester of my junior year of college I began to experience random muscular “shimmies” (as I called them) that would later be confirmed by an UVA neurologist as something far more serious than repurposed dance moves.  I would often lose my balance, drop things, or lose complete control of my arms, legs or neck when they occurred. The shimmies happened while driving, in the shower, during exams and once while on a staircase resulting in an ER visit due to a concussion (the first and only of my life). As a 22-year-old in great health, my doctors could find no other explanation other than “seizures associated with epilepsy.” I was ordered to take daily medications, my driver’s license was revoked and all plans I had for living abroad after graduation were postponed.

Nine months of self-pity, excess weight gain, and tittering alcohol abuse found me on a massage table, crying my eyes out to the “therapist” who was a family friend. She asked me one question that softly but powerfully turned down the victimization noise (for a moment): “What do you think your body was trying to tell you?”

Two reasons why this question was significant to me at that moment:

1)      It was the first time I considered that my identity may be separate from my body

2)      That my body could communicate with that “other” part of me

So who the hell was that “Other”??

In my quest to answer that question I discovered, rather quickly, that the answer was quite heavenly. As I continue to step forward into redefining my identity as a being beyond physical and intellectual capacity, I realized the lesson my body was attempting to have me pay attention to: Accept this. Forgive past behaviors. Choose Again.

My life had become a mirror of my self-inflicting anger. Accepting  my responsibility for my beliefs, forgiving myself of my momentary misunderstanding and then ACTING on a new thought became my guiding light. Once I stopped resisting, my body healed. I never had another seizer after that spring. And whenever there is something of high importance happening in my life that is in alignment with my new identity, my body responds with a softer shimmy.

I’m not sharing this story with you simply as inspiration, (though that’s cool, if that’s all you’re taking it as) but as an invitation to walk forward with me in new uncharted territory: Financial Healing.

Recently I had a break-through ah-ha moment just as powerful as that moment on the massage table. It was a perspective of money as abundant as the ocean. Envisioning my financial “being” as valuable and communicative as my physical body. In short, it was an invitation to accept a new thought about my relationship with money. And in the midst of pre-school tuition payments, student loans, and an employer in less than ideal financial standing, I recognize that now is a perfect time to take a new action based on this new thought.

 

GreenLid

So I’m in California this week, first stop in San Francisco to visit my sister living her dream with her start-up GreenLid. Her subscription clients are loving her delicious & healthy green smoothies.
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Watching her do her magic whipping up fruits and kale into incredibly smooth creations was so inspiring. Mostly because I see how quickly she went from dreaming the dream, to living the dream and delivering for corporate clients like BandPage and Task Rabbit on a regular basis.

It’s inspiring because she envisioned, affirmed, held faith, and committed herself to the internal work of attracting the perfect combination of resources, people, and knowledge to feel confident in manifesting her dream.

It’s inspiring because she’s not done yet. Her dreams are getting bigger and expanding to providing the country with healthy food fast.

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I’m grateful for her and to watch her in action today. I feel like I’m cheering on an Olympic Athlete. And regardless of her winning the gold (which she surely will) she’s inspiring me to keep working towards my dreams too.

Who’s inspiring you?