Uncertainty of Life


I don’t watch or read news because I have a physical reaction to it.  I used to think this made me ignorant and uninformed but in my recent study about Highly Sensitive People (and children), I realized, I just can’t process bad news fast enough for it to be worth my time and energy.  Living in the USA for the past 25 years almost, I realized: every news worth knowing will be replayed ad nauseam anyway so there is not much one can truly miss.

Somehow, in spite of me being ill informed, I was one of the first people that responded to the COVID-19 virus spread in New York City.  Worried about my almost 4 year old who was born premature and had a case of wheezing for which he was hospitalized twice (both time in April, last year and the year before that), I was in mild terror that we may be witnessing another similar experience.  Watching your child struggle to breathe and staring at the monitor with oxygen levels endlessly praying, meditating or trying to manifest a good outcome is not something I wanted repeated, so I took my chances and convinced my husband that we should keep both of our kids at home until we know more about what is going on.

More than a month ago, we isolated in our own New York City apartment because that seemed the most sensible thing to do.  We both work from home, our older was set up for homeschooling and the younger one kept keeping us on our toes with his, almost constant, need of attention.  I had a strong feeling that the world was facing a problem that will take weeks, months and perhaps an entire year or so to solve.  I didn’t panic, I was just aware.

I tried to keep things normal in all the ways that made sense: we could still do work, make sure our son is doing school work, give activities to our younger one, make meals on time, put kids to bed early enough so we can all be rested.  We upped our vitamine intake and meditation, and some moments alone so we can disconnect and recharge as having young boys at home can truly be draining.  Of course, in all the other ways, things were looking less, what we considered, “normal.”  The future was uncertain in a very obvious, palpable, in-your-face way.

The biggest joke of it all, however, is that life has always been uncertain.  Most of the stories we read or watch movies about are about the turning points in life when things stopped being one way and were suddently a differnt way causing the main character to undergo personal growth in order to survive or overcome the obstacle he/she was now facing.  Isn’t this life?  Why do we live like tomorrow is promised to us when there is truly no guarantee for it?

Intellectually, this made sense, but, at least for me, I didn’t really get it.  Not until I set with the discomfort of this thought and the new reality that made it unavoidable.  And, while terrifying at first, there was something magical arising from the knowing that we can’t control life.  We can’t control life and yet, life continues: the sun comes out every day, even when we can’t see it clearly through the clouds…We can’t control life but we can align with our breath, get present to it and feel the relief of the burdens we carry that aren’t even ours.  We can deepen our breath with intention to turn to more light, more life without standing in it’s way, finding the magic in the uncertainty.


A Shift in Perspective


When my family returned from a six-week trip to Europe last summer, I decided that we would not be doing the same trip in 2020.  Most people just brushed me of letting me know that I said that the previous year too.  I know I am human and that some things are not in my control, but I knew, deep in my guts, that this year was going to be different.

As a mom of two young boys, I am finally moving through the last stages of parenting where I am the only kid on the block that they want to play with, where their every need is my command (in their mind) and where I know clearly that leaving them for long lengths of time is not the way I wanted to set them up for life.  It’s a sacrifice that I don’t necessarily like and, yet, gladly take.

My last decade of life included many changes, I moved countries, got married, had 2 children, created my own business, become a citizen of the USA.  Even though I had my formal education long before the last 10 years, I have never stopped learning and training.  It often felt, however, that what I was doing was not enough.

As most new moms, or moms of small kids are aware, I was sneaking into social media space through the window of my phone: to see what is going on, to get news, to connect.  I know of all the pitfalls of it too, but there was something comforting  about texting your Facebook group about your baby’s sleep pattern or how to make your kid breastfeed from both breasts equally, and some other things that most people would probably consider gross, but us mamas, know and understand.

On another hand, I’d see these picture-perfect profiles on Instagram that made me feel self-conscious, inadequate and old.  There are accounts of people sharing the most ridiculous things and yet they have hundreds of thousands of  followers.  We all made fun of reality shows 10 years ago and yet, Kim Kardashian now has about 150 million followers online.  I would click on it, in disbelief, and find so many people blindly loving her or cursing her and I could never personally relate to her. Over time, this got to me.

What fashion magazines did with photoshop and creating fake standards of beauty, influencers were doing online with filters, make up, lighting and other tricks.  Some people followed out of curiosity, but many followed because they connected to it.  I made myself wrong for judging them, so I turned inward to find answers.  After a lot of back and forth and self-reflection, and without wishing them any harm, I concluded that the world in which they are a measure as success is not the world I want to participate in.  So, I isolated.

With help of a few mentors, each a gifted woman in her own right, I have slowly found my own voice, my essence and my own purpose.  It didn’t come easily or cheaply, but I rolled up my sleeves and did the work.  Conclusion: I bought into the illusion created by Hollywood and Social Media and I measured myself harshly against it, unwilling to do my own work – because I couldn’t see the point, and in a process, nurturing entitlement and judgement that things that come easily to me are not good enough and that lack of acknowledgement meant I wasn’t worthy.

No personal experience is ever “out there” but within.  So while there are reasons my insecurities were flaring up in my life, most of them were unattended wounds from the past.  As I revisited the events when I was hurt, I was able to release the old pain and create  something new.  I realized, the values in the world as I see it,  are not my values and regardless of how unrecognized I may remain, my purpose in life was in and of itself a motivation.

This naturally had me limit my social engagements, time online, and I found gratitude in what I already had: great partnership with my husband, two beautiful loving children that inspire me and are a great incentive for hard work, lots of art I never appreciated to revisit, organize, reframe, play on piano, edit and share, and wisdom to know how to create a great life, not the one that gets following and likes, but the one that fills one with content.

The longer I stuck in my own game and made choices that were “on purpose” for me, the more grounded I felt. Slowly and cautiously, I would share with people I spoke to about real values and inspire them to take on a similar journey.  It totally made sense, all my clients were creators and the tools I have mastered were extremely relevant for them too.  Week after week, I would get on a phone and talk about the world where we respect real values, where we spend more quality time with one another, honor nature, put people before money, share support and generosity rather than greed and misinformation.  And, before I knew it, this awful pandemic hit us all and, as if by magic, so many of us were called to reset.


  • We value our teachers because homeschooling for a few days got us present to the value and benefit of being in partnership with educators and people who care and want to pass their knowledge to your child.
  • We value our farmers and fresh produce that is harder to come by, when previously we took for granted as we could have it delivered with a click of a button.
  • We value medical staff and truly depend on them for survival fully aware of how much they need to be able to take care of themselves and their health in order to help us.
  • We also noticed so many things that can totally be obsolete: politicians arguing about who is more right, things being done in person when they can be done remotely, overproduction of things that create more clutter and animals in our daily diets that both cause the environmental changes we won’t be able to reverse.

Instead, we get to hold each other’s hands through this, share resources, ideas, use technology for good, reconnect in a new way holding real values close to our hearts.  In a face of a big event like this, people show solidarity, but then, as things get better, we may forget.  It is absolutely essential that we create a paradigm shift and not just wait until this is over, but use our energy, resources and real values to redefine the world we want to live in, the world that will be our legacy.

All as One


The state of our world today makes me think about the course I took at Landmark years ago (and reviewed twice since, each time getting it on a deeper level).

Just to give you a little background, Landmark is a cutting edge transformational company that offers courses that support people in living a created life.  There is a curriculum for living, as they used to call it, that included 4 courses:

  • Landmark Forum – where you got your personal transformation
  • Seminar Program – where you practiced the tools in your life
  • Advanced Course – where you got to create yourself as a possibility in the world
  • Self Expression and Leadership Program – where you got what it takes to transform your own community

The first course was awesome, I remember being in it like it was yesterday.  In just one weekend, I have turned my life around.  I was a 27 year old Montenegrin girl living in New York, bartending for living even though I had a Master Degree in Liberal Arts (Film and Psychology) and struggling with my identity, relationships, finances and self-image.  Sunday afternoon of the Landmark forum was the moment I realized, down in my bones, that I create my life.  I reap what I sow and if I wanted different results, I have to be different, which would have me do things differently, which will, in turn, help me create a different life.

This will sound like a total brag because it is:  I have since, taken charge of my finances, turned them around, repaired relationship with people in my life, created different jobs until I created my own business, gotten married to an amazing man and had 2 children, created ton of art and have lived those 15 years with every cell of my being.  I was down at times but never too long and never without realizing what was stopping me, letting it go and going back up.  I have learned and acquired many tools since, but the transformational tools I got at Landmark have been crucial in my ability to turn things around.

As someone who always wanted to do well, personal transformation made sense.  I was often complimented on how I do things in comparison with others but since we don’t live alone on this planet, it wasn’t enough for me to know.

In the second course, called Advanced Course, for the first time ever, I learned about what it was like to be all as one. You see, in life, we often make sure we clean “our side of the road” and then we get right about how well we did make others around us wrong for not stepping up.  You can like being right only so much because eventually you become this superhero and everyone around you seems to be the jerk.  I know some buy into that story but it’s absolutely contradiction this notion that we are all one.  So, if we are all one, how do we deal with someone “misbehaving?”

I remember sitting in my course after a lunch break waiting for the leader to start.  When someone yelled: “when are we gonna start?” she got up and said: “As a community, we are not here.”  This puzzled us at first:

“But I am here!” “I don’t care someone else is late” “Why should we suffer because someone is not showing up” were just some of many things that people were shouting, all of us expressing the way we deal with the crises.  Some of us were annoyed to be slowed down by others, some of us completely resigned to that fact.  But the magical thing happened next: as we were each dealing with our egos, and willing to acknowledge it and get what was at stake, people start arriving.  As if by magic, when we were all willing to see that we were, in fact, one, everyone was in their seats.

Years later, in preparation to leading my own course, I reviewed this program.  Same conversation happened, except now, I knew that we weren’t going to start until everyone was in.  Josselyn, one of my favorite humans and leader at Landmark, stopped people like me dead in our tracks. Instead of making the conversation about everyone being in their places, she called those of us who were leaders and had us stand up accountable for not acting like leaders.  In my head, what went on was something like this: “Let them figure it out, I already know this!” which was sadly, just a different version of the initial upset with people misbehaving.

Fast forward, 2 years ago, right after my husband reviewed the course for himself, he insisted I did it too.  But this time, when we were coming back to the break, instead of waiting for Josselyn to start the conversation about integrity and “operating as one,” I got up and looked around and despite not wanting to act almighty, I started asking everyone with an empty seat next to them: “Do you know who was sitting here and can you get in touch with them?.”  Before you knew it, a few of us were stepping up assuring people were in the room and I have felt so much gratitude inside for what was available when I stepped up and demanded of others that they step up.

By the time next break rolled around, many people came to thank me and I realized, for all this times I considered myself a “leader” as a title or something I achieved, it is only when I put it in action that people were relating to me as a leader.  This was life altering to me and taught me a valuable lesson: “don’t wait for someone to show up and save you, do what you can do right now, do it to the best of your ability and be willing to demand leadership of others because we can’t do anything alone but we can each do our part”

In times like this, we are called to be bigger than we want to be.  I told my husband last night as I was just digesting everything that happened in my day: we are called to be the bigger versions of ourselves.  The way we are right now isn’t enough.  For me, that looks like taking care of kids, making sure that they are learning, playing, growing such that I can work on my books, help through my online programs, offer sessions for people to heal the parts of themselves that are still left disintegrated.  These types of events bring out  our own survival so it’s important to acknowledge where the fear is coming from and be sane in how we go forward.  I also send emails to teachers to help them in every way and families that are impacted by kids staying at home.  It’s just a beginning …

Now I ask you, what can you do right now?  How can you step up into the leadership where you are and let go of a thought that one person makes no difference?  A friend yesterday posted on Instagram a pot of food she made and offered to run for medicine and errands for elderly.  I was so moved by her generosity.  What can you do and how can I help?  Please share your ideas and this blog with all those you think it can inspire into action.

Living on Your Own Terms in a Face of Coronavirus

Person Washing Hands

I believe that things don’t just randomly happen but are, instead, a manifestation of our fear, deep seeded issues that we are not resolving and often, our unwillingness to look beneath the surface and find our part in the situation at hand.

We didn’t “cause” Coronavirus – we don’t have godlike powers.  But we all contributed.  The panic that is settling in with some is not caused by the virus itself, the virus is merely revealing problems we all already had.

I notice, in my life, this situation only magnified the doubts and fears that were already there: knowing my younger one has, what doctors call, virus induced wheezing, knowing its beginning to be time to move to a different neighborhood and be closer to nature, wanting to earn more money and have more trust in my son’s education, our government and improve my communication with my husband such that we don’t waste time going back and forth when we disagree about something important.

These concerns were there already, and the arrival of this epidemic is just having me unable to look away.  Tragedies (remember 9/11?) have a way of transforming people’s lives and letting them clearly see what matters most.  Sometimes, we don’t know what matters until we don’t have it anymore.

So, to me, this is a time of self-reflection.  I had a hard time explaining to people why I pulled my older one out of school last week and why we stocked up on food ahead of time and are minimizing exposure to the world outside of our own home.  But I also hold myself accountable for my choices and consequences I have to face because of them.  It is only fair that I make choices I can live with.

As a child, I often did things just in spite. Because I was smart and fast, I would do things both my way and other people’s way to prove that my way was better.  But being right only cost me at the end.  We all make mistakes but when we make them because someone around us wouldn’t shut up about it, the consequence of that is real anger that is hard to resolve after.  We resolve the mistake we make ourselves much more easily, because we can own that we did the best we could even when that wasn’t good enough.

I noticed I was getting mad at the world for not understanding and approving of my choices.  But the truth is, I have to live with the choices I make and therefore, it is up to me to make them.  I don’t mind, and even encourage, other people’s views and reasoning as well as collaboration.  I am not the smartest person and together, we always know more.  But after a discussion and a good honest chat, I take charge for my life. \

It’s been an adjustment to look forward to Spring in New York unable to move with freedom we had only a few months ago without this virus scare.  But I hope that this disruption in business as usual reveals all that isn’t working so that we can each do our part in repairing it.  It’s important that we make choices we can live with, work to earn the lifestyle we are committed to, send children to the schools whose teachers and administration we trust, vote and elect people in government who can represent us and keep the dialogue open. It is important to never lose faith and to see the bigger picture, to ask: how is this working in my favor?

This isn’t advice to meditate and positive think our way out of this.  I don’t believe that meditation and positive thoughts alone are sufficient to make the change we seek.  I believe that putting the effort in alignment with our values is what matters and I hope this serves as a wakeup call for majority, because the majority can cause a paradigm shift, we all so desperately need.  Life can be altered in a moment. In one second, everything can change without turning back.  So, keep your minds rested, eyes open, thinking on and wash your hands.  Step out of the daily survival and stand in the future you want for yourself, for your children, for the world.

Our Unique Gifts: the Responsibility We Have



I was a curious child.  My mom had me explore the Larousse Encyclopedia before I started my elementary school.  I have no idea if the reason behind it was her personal love of reading and ambition or the fact that I showed signs of interest.  Regardless, when I sat in my first grade, while other kids around me were following the words with their fingers and stuttering, I was already a fluent reader.

My summer vacations were a huge part of my childhood.  I was blessed with the privilege of summer vacations in a family home built by my grandparents.  Even during those months filled with play an vitamin “sea”, my mom would religiously replenish my book pile every Friday so that I could continue to read and learn.

It is easy to think that some people are born gifted.  I was told that I was smart and talented too many times to count.  I don’t want to discredit it here: I think I was.  But for as long as I thought that my success in life came from my lucky gene, I was paralyzed and arrogant.  I expected to be noticed and discovered rather than powerfully taking steps to succeed and explore.  Working hard and putting in an effort seemed embarrassing and as an antithesis to my inate ability.  On another hand, I was never acknowledged for the times when I did put in the work.  The credit went to God, or my nature – not my efforts.

I had a quick text exchange with my 6-year-old’s school teacher this morning after she sent out a message to parents that most of the kids failed the spelling test and had their homework incomplete today.  I knew my Adrian was not among those kids as both my husband and I hold ourselves accountable that his work is done and that he goes to school prepared.  We do this because our son thrives on being prepared and doing the work allows him the confidence to embrace school as an opportunity and not a chore.  While he is definitely a smart kid, I make sure I praise his effort and not his “gene.”  For as long as he knows he put in his best effort, he can embrace both failure and success, even if he prefers the latter.

What I know to be true is that successful people are those who put in the effort not the whiners who sit on sidelines and complain that life is unfair or wait to cash in their gift without moving an inch. How crippling it must be to have a gift and try to milk it while consistently witnessing failures because you don’t put in the effort that is necessary to nurture and share them with others?  We all come with unique gifts.  However, nobody succeeds without effort,

It helped me a great deal when my Family Constellation mentor Suzi Tucker shared with me that my gifts don’t come from me, but through me and that gifts that are unexpressed can become burdens. This allowed me to shift the context and look deeper into what was unique to me with responsibility to put in the effort necessary to nurture, grow and share it with the world, with people that wanted what I had. Suddenly, I stopped feeling overwhelmed by them but organized myself to humbly do the work to embrace and expand what I was born with, giving me sense of purpose and North Star when I open my eyes in the morning.

This allowed me to put my ego aside, to clearly see what was on or off my path, to let my fears dissipate and stand my ground unbothered.

What are your unique gifts and how do you honor them with effort?

Pause to Feel Your Breath, It Won’t Be There Forever


Here is one of the mistakes people often make: they invest all their time and energy getting somewhere, aligning the dots so they can achieve the thing that in and of itself won’t really make them happy.

Achievements look good on paper, resumes, CVs and perhaps in the first 2-3 minutes when you meet someone new and try to impress them.  But listing  what you achieved won’t connect you to another human, in fact, it will most likely keep you at distance. This isn’t because the achievements are unworthy, but because reading any type of list doesn’t really evoke an emotion and move another.

I have been a victim of this myself for so long and even with all the beautiful moments of feeling in touch with my inner spirit, with the divine, I fell for the urge to express myself through the number, the zip code, or the 15 second pitch.  I have wasted countless hours trying to figure out how to speak about myself that impresses people the most.  Just today I was intimidated to share my real truth with a friend and had an insight: maybe I intimidate people in this way too.

I am not even done looking for ways to impress the world.  Though now, I have a fancier word for it: I am anchoring myself in what is already true about me so that people are willing to look, listen and buy what I have to offer.  

All this is going through my head tonight as I am trying to go to bed, beat, tired, with skin breaking out, messy hair, sick husband next to me and kids finally asleep after being sick for 2 weeks.  And then it hit me, and I admit – not for the first time:

 What is up with the crazy chase?  Where are we heading while mindlessly ordering presents for people we barely even talk to?  Why are so impatient, we can’t even give people space to respond in their own time because we know it takes a second to send a text and we feel entitled to their time?  When will we fit in all the things we want to do? Who can help us and when and why isn’t that already happening?  The list goes on.

Can we just stop for a moment to notice and show gratitude for still breathing, to feel our breath and appreciate the magic of it being there whether we consciously choose to inhale?  What if we take that breath and look around, appreciate the path that led us here, acknowledge where our chest feels tight, affinity is lost or even to just allow ourselves to imagine what it would look like if we knew, and owned, that we are truly the creators. 

I am allowing myself to feel what it feels like to be exactly here where I am: car noise outside, sound of a heater kicking in, someone on our floor closing the door loudly.  My boys are asleep, my husband is out and I am going to end here so I can go rest too.  Can you stop to see what is already all around you too?  

The Way Out is Through


Triggered by some of the international news, I wanted to share some wisdom that not only helped me overcome some huge obstacles in life but that helped countless people I know overcome some really harsh realities.

More than a decade ago, I attended a course in which, reflecting on my life, I realized that I have the ability to own all the choices I made in life whether I was aware of it at the time or not. This wasn’t an easy switch to make, but it was a complete state change for me.  Once you get that no matter what happens to you (which you cannot control), you can choose how you react to it, you lose the desire to dwell in being a victim of your circumstance.  To clarify, you can be a victim of the crime because something physically did happen to you (this is a legal terminology) but you don’t have to be a victim of the freedom to choose what you do about it (fight for justice, walk away and focus on something else, go to therapy to release it, etc).

This is much easier said than done.  We are complex beings and mostly, we are really not choosing unless we are intentional about it.  What is determining our feelings and thinking is, in large, not just a response to what already happened to us, but the cultural conditioning we were raised inside of.  Said another way: nobody thinks clearly by default, everyone is always seeing things from the filter of their own past, conditioning, environment etc.  Our conversations in life are, for the most part, like one constructed ego arguing with another about who is wrong and who is right.  The truth is always, both are right to feel and think how they think because their conditioning is valid, but both are wrong in reality because neither is really coming from an actual source of who they are and arriving at their conclusions freely.

This is a massive “mind-bend” if you ask me.  If we know that we are so pre-programmed, how do we get out of it?  It is a bit like that Chinese toy that looks like a cylinder in which you can stick your finger in each side.  When you try to pull your fingers out, the cylinder tightens and your fingers get stuck.  To get unstuck, you need to push your fingers inside towards one another, contrary to logic in a way, and that widens the opening of the cylinder and lets your fingers free.  Said bluntly, “THE WAY OUT IS THROUGH.”


In the past 15 years or so, having done so many self reflective types of work on myself and having gone through the grinder with it, I realized:  the work on ourselves is never done.  We never really arrive at the enlighetment or top of the mountain that doesn’t instantly takes us back to feeling the impact of our ego or seeing the bottom of another mountain.  Working on ourselves is like dealing with dirty laundry, it’s never done.  You do a load and fold it up/put away and then you go to bed and put whatever you wore back into the bin to pile up until you can wash your clothes again.  If you are thinking you can just stay naked to avoid that, notice you would be a victim of laundry being done which doesn’t really give you a lot of freedom to do other things now, does it?  (I just went there myself btw.)

It is impossible to always be perfectly ON, “woke”, clear and so on.  It’s just not how humans are designed and how life works.  But there is a real difference between knowing we are flawed as people and letting the people off the hook.  It is not ok to hold people against the standard we set for them (Example: being annoyed at your man for not bringing you flowers you never asked him to bring you, expecting him to read your mind that he should do this or that for your anniversary when that was neither your request nor something you did in the past that would prompt him to think of it).  However, it is ok to look at people in organizations, roles and jobs that have a set way of operating and hold them to their standard (Example: when Whole Foods tell me they would deliver food between 12-4pm and they deliver it at 5pm, I call them on it and ask for some compensation for their impact on my day and time.  I don’t do that because I am mean, I am holding them to the promise they made and nothing other than that).

We have to allow this to be a learning curve for all.  Everyone will at some point in their life be late even if it was impossible to them to avoid it (tragedies happen, circumstances can be beyond our control).  It is up to us to own that regardless of what caused our lateness, that we were late.  Trying to gain sympathy for the unavoidable, while completely human and legit, cheapens this bond to our promise and if we let ourself go down that rode, there is no coming back.

With the most recent work on self-discovery, I realized that even most emotional of events, if we don’t release them, can hold us hostage.  This is such a difficult conversation to have because people are so protective of their wounds – and rightfully so.  I think that over time, we covered up so much of our personal pain that when someone asks us to let it go, it is like asking us to give up the only thing we know.  If that is all we know, we grow comfortable with it and start defining ourselves accordingly so any disturbance to it or other people’s suggestion to let the pain go feels like a real threat.  It feels uncomfortable and unsafe, as unknown usually is.

Letting go of pain isn’t that simple because if we simply just let it go, we bypassed the enormous lesson that pain can bring us.  We ignore it’s lesson.  If something bad happened to us, we can’t avoid that it happened.  We have to mine for it’s wisdom or we forever become a victim of it.  Is it true that this tragedy means this or that?  Of course not, but it’s a powerful way to reframe it and file it away such that our life doesn’t become about avoiding similar thing in a future.  And, while avoiding same thing from happening is wise and part of learning, if we focus on avoiding  X, then our life consequently becomes about X and avoiding it.  Our brains are designed to do just that, to mine for things that feel unsafe whether or not they are that in reality.  If they “seem” unsafe, we will worry about them just the same.  This is a great way to protect ourselves, but I ask, do you want to live a life of protecting yourself or actually being free and alive?

We can’t replay the pain or let it go, not at first.  I truly believe, and evidence in my life has shown me clearly, that we have to allow ourselves to experience it and to experience it fully.  To discover wisdom in adversity, tragedy or pain we feel around it, we need to allow it.  Allowing something to be drops our guard and resistence to it.  We can see where we feel it in our body.  Is our chest feeling tight, is there a lump in our throat, do we feel tongue tied or paralized from the waist down.  Where is the pain, or more specifically, where is the sensation you feel?  If we stay curious, plugged in and aware, we will inevitably feel peace in this process because when we don’t resist life, life just IS and when life just is for us, we are free.

Again, this isn’t easy and it’s not a one time deal.  I wish it was because I would write a manual and give people the key to living life powerfully.  It doesn’t work that way.  Life is not about arrival, about having something but about being something moment to moment, about discovering something day in day out and about continually arriving into the present moment because the truth is always and only in the present moment, in the NOW.

Don’t get me wrong, I am a very outgoing, bubbly, and a go-go-go type of person. I can talk miles an hour and be in that mode for days to come, and yet, I do my best work when I take a breath and light a candle and take a second to be where I am, to collect my attention from looking at the past or the future and see what is actually right in front of me.  Having 2 small kids definitely teaches me to be more present because when I am not, I am instantly reacting and getting resentful.  When we don’t feel good, it’s a sure sign we are not present.

I wrote this because I see news all the time and how some people take advantage of the tragic things that happened to them in the past.  Writing to anyone directly isn’t ok because they are not asking me for my view nor are they a request to change.   But I do feel compelled to share these things.  They are not of my own creation, but the years of learning and practicing things in my life and with my clients.  As with everything, wisdom doesn’t come from us but through us and that should be liberating for all of us.  We can see ourselves as being in a flow allowing us to channel the good and work through the debris.

Thank you for reading this to the end.  If you are pulled to do so or struggling with something that seems like an obstacle that cannot be overcome or feels to you like a real fork in a road, talk to someone, allow someone to witness you and share their wisdom or how they see it.  You don’t have to take their word for it, but stay in the inquiry.  We all make up things and see it through the filter of our own experience but when we see the filter, even for a moment, we can go beyond what is predictable and get into the magic of the unknown.  And if you have nobody that can listen to you in such way, write to me and I will support you through it as I did myself and many people in my practice.



Roles We Play and Dreams We Set Aside


I audited an advanced acting class last night here in New York City.  The class was highly recommended by a friend I trusted and so I went to check it out with no expectations.  But little did I know, my mind was flooded by memories.

The moment I decided, I was not going to be an actress was a moment my grandpa said: “you will be an actress like your mom.” I didn’t think he was a fan of my mom at the time, so I figured: I’d rather be liked.  The thing about decisions like these, that we make in childhood, are that they dictate what is possible for us but we are mostly unaware of them unless we deliberately look at why we are stuck where we are stuck.

Fast forward to school days, I was in drama and loved it.  I even played a daughter to a now accomplished actress.  We were both rewarded for it.  I loved being on stage, but even then, I knew I had to find something that would have higher approval ratings.  Naturally, I started college as Pre-Med.  I never really knew what I wanted to become.  I think I was searching for titles that sounded good more than I was searching within for what would have me come alive.  A year or so into it, I was sitting with a friend in front of the school realizing: I really don’t want to be a doctor.  The next day I switched to Film Production / Media Studies Major.  Luckily, I already did all the hard requirements so I spent the rest of the college years invested in a subject that was of interest.

While still acting in numerous student projects, and fully enjoying it, I couldn’t admit that I liked it.  Flashback to a moment my uncle told me I was someone who constantly asked for attention.  Needless to say, I tried to tame that part of myself with all my might. I succeeded, in part, because I really stepped into the “behing the camera” personna and enjoyed it.  Even when I worked on 2 film projects after college, I closely worked with actors and was often asked to go in and be in the scene.

Hitting a dead end, in a way, shortly after college and graduate school when I was completely out of money, near expiration to my student visa and in absolute solitude, invested more in my eating disorder than anything happening around me, I took my first transformational class.  It made sense as I was already exploring yoga before that, but sitting in a weekend class with 100 other New Yorkers, I really got to see: I made everything up.  Things are not at all the way I see them.  People in my life maybe judged me, but that still wasn’t enough of a reason for me to react to that judgement and live my life to please them.  Little by little, I started reflecting on my whole life and numerous decisions I made as a child or young adult which prevented me from living my life fully self expressed, passionate and present.

Thanks to this work and my consistent expansion, I have created such a beautiful life: family I adore, business I am proud of and space for myself to heal all the broken pieces I felt I carried inside.  All along life was happening and I felt like an actress playing her part.  In fact, all that film and acting training I got in college came in handy with the transformational personal development work I was doing.

And then, out of the blue, as I was judging bad acting on one of the TV shows I was watching, the voice inside of me was nudging me to explore why I can be such a judgemental bitch at times.  Reflecting back, speaking to my husband who is likewise a coach, I realized, I may have given something up a time long ago afraid that I would never succeed.  This hit me as a ton of bricks because, honestly, I am already pretty busy, I don’t just raise my children, coach people and write, I also sing, draw and do yoga to name just a few favorite things…and yet, I could no longer do nothing about it.

That’s the thing with transformation, you reach insights that don’t even seem like a good idea. As someone who does her best to walk her talk, I at least have to lean into these insights and give it a shot. And that is how I ended up in an advanced acting class, feeling so humbled, shy, really dealing with the knowing that I don’t really know.  Sometimes, regardless of how masterful we feel we are in one area of our lives, it is when we explore the unknown that we learn the depths of what we are really made of.

Sharing this to see and ask if there are dreams you put on hold or set aside? Are you willing to maybe take a class or explore leaning into it even a tiny bit to see what you learn about yourself?

As always,

with gratitude for reading,


10 Tips on Traveling with Small Kids Gracefully and on a Budget


My family lived between Montreal, New York, and a few cities in Florida before we settled back in New York so, we travelled by plane quite a bit.  My kids are 6 and 3 and they have almost visited as many countries as my husband and I.  In a process, I realized a few things that made a huge difference in our travels overseas and I wanted to share it with parents who plan to travel.

  1. Always pack light: Travelling light saves us money as most airlines now charge for checked bag or heavy carry on.  Besides that, when we travel light, it’s easy to opt for public transportation that often gives us an experience of someone who lives in a city and saves us money (Ubers though often beat the price of regular car service or taxi so if you have an application, my advice is to check and compare).   We should absolutely bring all the necessities but eliminate the extras because it’s also nice to be able to buy something you really love and bring it home and people who pack tight usually end up having to buy and check extra bags.  If you travel on a budget, this will be both stressful and costly.
  2. Invest in direct flights: When I travelled alone, having a connecting flight or a lay over was never a problem.  Most adults can have a glass of wine, read or kill a few hours before getting on a next flight and have flexibility to reset if there is a flight change.  When you are with small kids, this is a huge inconvenience and I think it’s worth the expense when buying a ticket and avoiding having any chance of possibly missing the next flight.  What we love to do instead is to stay in the city we would normally have a lay-over in and give ourselves a day or so to do a proper visit.  Our time is far more valuable than extra cost of flying directly.
  3. Travel late at night: We made the mistake once to fly early in the evening thinking kids would sleep.  If the flight is under 10 hours, consider that it would take kids a little bit of time to get settled and fall asleep.  What was far more effective for us was to arrive at the airport early for a late-night flight.  We would have dinner at the airport, take time getting through security, let kids run around and get tired and then settle them to sleep even before we board the flight.  It worked.
  4. Perks of traveling with kids every parent should know about: When you travel with kids, you are allowed to bring in more liquid than 100ml due to children’s special needs, milk, formula etc.  What you must do, however, is present it to the security and allow more time for them to check it.  For those of you who travel with a baby under 2 years old, not only that you can avoid paying ticket by choosing to buy “infant in a lap” option but you can call the airline for overseas flights and request a free bassinet so baby can sleep.
  5. Pick a hotel/airbnb that offers free breakfast: The best stays we ever had were those that offered free coffee and breakfast in a morning. It’s not just about saving money, which is a nice, it’s that knowing you can have a breakfast first thing in the morning and offer choices to your kids allows you to wake up at peace and have some peaceful morning time before the day begins, you go on to explore or travel further.  We are a family of 4 so sometimes we even go to breakfast separately so we can each have more peace starting our day.
  6. Find the nearest grocery:  We always look for places with kitchenette or at least small fridge as that allows us to avoid restaurants with small kids.  But even in places that didn’t have a way to store food, we would always find the nearest grocery store and stock up on snacks, water, juice, wine if you wish, and fruits to avoid having to purchase things on the go.  Being prepared saves us money but also reduces potential stress of having to find things in areas where that is not likely.
  7. Check out all the FREE things in that city and be sure to see if they are kids friendly.  We get to see the best of the city when we walk around, use public transportation, or even better walk from place to place.  You will really get to see how people live and get to play with the natives in a way you cannot when you go from hotel to event to restaurant and back to hotel
  8. Be willing to change things last minute:  Parenting is not always easy but some things are best to be flexible with.  That said, we always have things in our calendar that are “sacred” and we don’t consider missing out on those.  What helps for motivation often is buying tickets in advance and allowing plenty of time before and after so you don’t feel like you have a packed schedule while on vacation.
  9. Always purchase travel insurance – may you never need it.  Contrary to what I expected, insurance is relatively inexpensive and it gives you freedom to let your kids be and not freak out around the smallest things or mishaps that could happen while away.
  10. Take lots of pictures:  Time goes fast and it’s always powerful to reflect back on things that you may have not been truly present to because you were accountable for making sure kids were ok.  So go out of the way to snap pictures because they will remind you of the good times and be a memory you can cherish for years to come.

Hope that this is helpful.  Traveling with kids is not always easy but I find it’s worth it and while I sometimes even complain or wish I can change the duration of my travels or the way we did it, I never ever regret actually doing it.  Bon voyage to all!

Why Apology Doesn’t Always Make Things Better and Yet It Can


Triggered by seeing a Good Morning America host make fun of 6 year old Prince George, mind you, an heir to the throne of the long standing British Monarchy, I have found myself worried that people will see my comments on social media and disregard it as yet another troll fest.

Here is what happened:  An anchor Lara Spencer reported last week that Prince George has a very busy schedule in Fall taking all kinds of classes, among which is ballet.  She made a remark that he had to give up playdough and laughed about his interest in ballet, adding that she wonders how long this interest of his will last.

Here is why I requested of the ABC station, and chairman of it Rober Iger that she be suspended and taken off air:

  • she normalizes making fun of a child who is just 6 years old
  • she makes fun of boys being interested in ballet which sounds sexist at best
  • she gives herself permission to comment on children of another culture
  • she is disrespectful of the title and position this particular child
  • she goes on to apologize about it by saying everybody should do whatever they want, as if that is her place to do, we don’t ask her for negative feedback but also she is not qualified to give us initial motivation
  • lastly, she goes on air to say she was stupid thinking that will gain her sympathy and continues to tell us what she did this week as a response to what happened, which is really great but it makes no difference in the lives of all of us offended.

I don’t personally care about this anchor in particular and I am not on purpose holding a grudge.  I am merely pointing out why she offended so many of us and shining light on what she would need to repair.

Any apology, to be effective, doesn’t just need to be sincere.  It is also not enough when a person feels bad, on contrary, them putting their emotions in the space makes the person offended deal with other people’s emotions and not their own.

For the apology to work, the following should be true:

  • The apology has to be genuine, done because one can see the things from the other person’s perspective and not just because they don’t like that they mess up
  • The person who offends us, ideally, needs to get the full scope of what they did, because if they don’t get that, then they are not addressing the impact
  • They have to be humbled, they have to be willing to accept that they broke our trust or what the promised, or the safety of how we once used to listen to them
  • They have to give us space to digest what happened, along with their apology and then patiently wait for the dust to settle
  • Lastly, they can take action to repair the relationship they have with us rather than build the case for why they made the mistake, said in other words, the apology is about the victim not the offender and it has to be honored as such

This is just a basic mechanics of the apology.  The other day when I was riding a train, the person across from me was opening a bottle of soda that went all over the train and onto my espadrilles.  While I certainly don’t want to hold a grudge and know this was an accident, I was blown away but how much they insisted they were sorry, not allowing me the process to have my own feelings, one of which was: it really sucks to have my feet wet.

People often apologize in a very ego fashion, they can’t stand that anyone can think less of them so they show their remorse.  As children, we were often rewarded for feeling bad for our mistakes so it’s the conditioning that has been passed on us from past generations.  Regardless, the only thing that really works is not being sincere (this is all about being a good boy/good girl) but being powerful and willing to withstand that our actions have impacted another in a negative way.  When we can allow space for that, we allow space for something to be and in the space when something can be, we can actually feel peace, freedom and ultimately, resolution.

So next time you offend someone, instead of apologizing profusely and repeating your “I’m sorry’s” on a loop, say it once and ask how you can repair the damage caused.  You may or may not be able, or be committed, to doing reparing work, but at least this will allow you to be straight about it and then let the other person heal on their own terms.  At the end, that’s the least you can do for people you offended.

Please share with me how it felt to be on both ends of messing up and how you dealt with it in both situations as well as: did you feel good and powerful in the end?

Grateful for your comments and shares