One of the people on my GoD Squad (my Gems of Delight Book Launch Team), Heidi, posted this TED Talk by Amanda Palmer for me to see:
Writing a book is one thing. It takes devotion, listening within, and discipline. But asking for others to help you share the soulful inspirations in the book with others?! Asking others to join with me in creating a more compassionate world, with this book as a guiding force?! For me, that has been something else entirely.
It makes us vulnerable to ask others — to cook us a meal when we are sick or grieving, to help us go through our closets and keep only the things that make us feel beautiful no matter how our bodies are changing, to listen to our ideas, to listen to us when we need the nonjudgmental presence of someone who loves us, and to support us in bringing our dreams into reality.
Sometimes, it’s easier to be the “helper.” It’s less vulnerable. It’s less risk of rejection. But if intimacy is to deepen, we must risk vulnerability. We must risk asking.
The night before we launched the Kickstarter campaign, I texted a few of my closest friends and said, “Well, tomorrow it is!” I posted on my private Facebook group, “Brian came up with this awesome name for the tribe of people who want to support Gems of Delight being out in the world: the GoD Squad! If you’d like to be on the GoD Squad, would you let me know?” I made signs and asked Brian to take a picture of me. I sat down to write out what I’d say on Tuesday morning to ask people on my public Facebook page if they would contribute to the campaign.
And then I went to sleep. Scared? Yes.
You all have heard the story of me moving to a new state and school in sixth grade, being kicked off the lunch table and sitting by myself for several months.
Here I was now as a 43 year old woman ASKING OTHERS TO SIT BESIDE ME.
And I wondered, “Will anyone sit beside me?”
Friends think I’m crazy for thinking this way. My GoD Squad says things like, “We love you and support you!”
But fears aren’t rational, are they?
Yet I have felt the call within me to TRUST. RISK TRUST. RISK ASKING others to be beside you. TRUST that the call you hear within you is a noble call to offer gems that inspire a more compassionate world. RISK letting the light within you shine. RISK vulnerability. And TRUST you will be held.
Last Tuesday morning, I woke up and checked out how the Kickstarter Campaign was going. Brian had stayed up late to hit “launch” at 12:01 a.m. By the time I got up at 6:30 a.m., backers had already pledged hundreds of dollars! And by 3 p.m. that same day — 15 hours after it launched, the goal of $3,000 was met!
I had people texting, calling and messaging me, “Are you watching this, Lisa? Do you feel the love? We’ve got you!”
I was blown away. I cried — not because the number of backers and the dollar amount have continued to go up — but because here were people, my people, saying, “We are beside you!”
Months ago, when Brian and a dear friend said, “We’re going to do a Kickstarter campaign, Lisa, and you’re going to let others help you,” I was terrified. NO WAY. To put myself out there and ask others in such a PUBLIC way to SIT BESIDE ME felt way too vulnerable. One on one? But out into the world so everyone could see if I failed or not? No way!
But I kept hearing, “Trust, Lisa.”
And so I took the risk. I made the Kickstarter video with the awesome support of Brian and Tommy D’Aquino. And when we pushed the “launch” button, it was me asking the people who know me and those who have been following my blog and work for years, “Would you sit beside me?”
And now, just seven days into the campaign, people have said, “YES! I’m with you! I believe in you!”
And in just seven days, I have learned to RISK VULNERABILITY. I have learned to RISK ASKING. And I have learned to risk putting myself out there saying, “I have had this dream since I was a little third grade girl writing books in Mrs. Kostenbader’s class. I have wanted to write and lead a movement of delight since I was that little girl. And I have felt a call within me to be a modern-day mystical poet and leader inspiring a more compassionate world. Would you be with me?”
And I have felt the strength that comes from vulnerability. It’s an inner and communal strength. It’s deep. It’s powerful.
Writing the book? That was the easy part! (Okay, well, sort of!). The harder part has been facing my ear and saying to her, “Love (yes, I call her Love), I know you are scared. Those old memories come back up. Those old ways of armoring your heart come up. Yet, My Love, let’s risk this together. We will be okay no matter what. LOVE has us.”
And yet, not even that is hard. It’s called surrender. It’s called trusting Love. And it’s within all of us.
LOVE has you. LOVE will sit beside you, hold you up, and let you know that you are not alone.
YET, at some point in your life (well, really MANY points in your life), you will have to RISK ASKING. You’ll have to risk asking others to be alongside you. You’ll have to risk vulnerability.
You know that beautiful quote, “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom?” (Anais Nin). Well, ask yourself, “Is it that time?”
Is it that time to risk blossoming…and asking for what you need?
I am beside you. It is my life’s work to accompany people. And I believe in shared power, elevating each other, helping each other rise, and asking a soulful person, “What’s your dream? Let’s make it a reality!”
THIS is a new paradigm of true power.
I’m done believing in scarcity and competition – especially between women.
There is abundance of light and space for all of us to shine. I believe in crowd sourcing — of asking “our people” to support each other’s dreams. Because every single woman I talk to, her dream is a noble one. It’s to create more beauty in this world, to uplift, to bring more peace in this world, and to deepen a sense of compassion and connection between ALL of us around the world.
Shawn Fink, Founder of the Abundant Mama Project, whose course, podcast, book and LIFE are about supporting moms to find their true happy place and to care for self in deep and nourishing ways.
Like Kyia of At Peace Arts whose art is all about inspiring PEACE in our world.
Like Rachel Macy Stafford, Hands Free Mama, who just wrote an incredible NYTimes Best-selling book, Only Love Today, and whose life’s passion is about letting go of anything that keeps us from loving fully.
Like Meghan Nathanson, who is a gifted mindfulness artist and writer, whose deep reflections and art stir my soul and inspire people to pause and notice the holy in the ordinary.
Like Carla Naumburg whose honest reflections, books, and writings inspire people to bring mindfulness into their everyday lives in real, authentic ways – with humor and vulnerability.
Like Miri Klements who is a wise grandmother and crone, whose way of holding space, listening, and connecting Spirit and to you is soul nourishing.
Like Judy Bazis of Illuminate Festivals who has created a community of healers who share their gifts with the world through mind-body festivals — and it’s growing!
Like Chrissy Miller whose Inspiration Project is about seeing the soul of a person and bringing their gifts to light through her photography.
Jessie Evoniuk, veterinarian, wife of a rancher, and mom who cares for pets and their owners with such devoted care, and has started a blog about her adventures, Dirt Roads Lead Me Home.
These are all women who are doing incredible things! They RISK putting their passions and art out into the world to create a more compassionate world!
What if you, too, declared something big to the universe, and decided to risk asking…and trust?
I’ll sit beside you.
Dear Readers, Will you sit beside me?
My Kickstarter Campaign is going strong. I so would love to send you a copy of Gems of Delight. Would you pre-order yours through the Kickstarter Campaign? And if someone comes to mind who you think would love these reflections and find nourishment in their message, would you share this with them? They can always find a “sneak peek” of the book here.
What people are saying about Gems of Delight: