Photo by Nijwam Swargiary on Unsplash
Just over a year after my daughter Nova was born (and I had officially stopped breastfeeding), I took a train to Montreal to spend the weekend with Nancy Trites Botkin, an incredible woman I’d met a year prior.
We were introduced after I’d confided in a friend, telling her how I was feeling a bit lost. My husband Amik had passed away a few years earlier and I had soon entered into another relationship that led to marriage and a beautiful daughter. My business, which I had invested so much into, was at a significant crossroads. Things had moved very quickly in my life and I felt as if my head was spinning. When it stopped, which direction should I go in? I felt unsure of the answer.
So I invested a significant amount of money, more than I’d spent on any one thing in a very long time, and went to work on discovering my purpose with Nancy.
The weekend I spent with her was truly life-changing. I left feeling clearer, more sure of myself and more confident in my life's direction. It was truly a transformative experience. Not that my work stopped there, but that weekend was the catalyst for a long journey back to myself.
Last week was week twelve, the last week of my program, Be All You Are. For twelve weeks, eight women met once a week with open hearts and a clear intention - to feel more aligned with themselves, get clearer on their dreams and begin to lay the path towards a more authentic, fulfilling life.
As we reviewed the Be All You Are Manifesto, each woman shared what they had experienced throughout the program. I will be sharing their stories over the coming weeks, but it became clear that there were key themes that came from those conversations.
The incredible women in the group experienced their own transformations in the following ways:
Connection: Often when we feel lost it is because we’ve lost connection to our inner voice. We’ve allowed the megaphone of outside influences to drown out the whispers of our inner guidance system. Throughout the program, the women deepened their connection to their powerful, innermost selves.
Clarity: Most coaches will start by asking you what you want. I love asking, but what do you really, really want?, in order to get past the noise of what you think you should want or what you think you can have. But it’s hard to be clear on what we want if we feel disconnected from ourselves. Once we’ve reestablished that connection, getting clear on what lights us up gets so much easier (and more fun!).
Confidence: The women in my group are ambitious, accomplished women. They are senior leaders at work, they are actively involved mothers and wives. Yet they still grapple with imposter syndrome and self-doubt. It can be difficult after spending most of your life manicuring your identity to shift gears. It feels like there is too much to lose. But through the program, confidence in themselves grew. Not their outer selves, with the title of VP or Founder, but their inner selves. Their confidence in the beautiful woman within expanded, allowing them to leave self-doubt behind.
Community: At this point, most of us have our circle of friends. Some may be from childhood, others more recent. But we rarely select our friends based on their mindset. The women in my group didn’t know each other before we started on our journey together, yet they connected on a deep level with understanding, an open heart and without judgment. Within the Be All You Are space, they experienced a true sense of belonging.
Wishing you a week full of connection, clarity, confidence and community.
Kena Paranjape, Founder, All You Are