As yoga teachers, leaders, coaches, healers, mentors, and conscious entrepreneurs, we're the guides. We’re supposed to have it all together, right?
I sure as hell don’t. While my life and business are pretty spectacular the majority of the time, they’re definitely a work in progress.
Case in point: the relaunch of my beloved Secret Sauce Society for 2012 – about which I have a huge confession to make. More than one, actually. Layers of them.
Here’s my FIRST confession:
I just refunded thousands of dollars to the women who applied, got accepted, and enrolled into Secret Sauce 2012.
It felt like the right thing to do – for 2 reasons mainly:
I had private conversations with a handful of these women – the ones who revealed to me after enrolling in SSS that they had a few concerns. As it turns out, after they shared their various concerns with me (ranging from budgeting and scheduling to my newest, most precious, but definitely most conflicting priority – my newborn son Rhythm), insight was brought to the forefront.
While at first I resisted and even denied their reasons for doubt (very egotistically thinking to myself, “huh, maybe these ladies just aren’t Secret Sauce material”), in the end I knew their concerns were MORE THAN valid... they were SPOT ON... and that meant I had some serious re-thinking and remodeling to do if I was going to follow through on relaunching this program.
Essentially, they were right and I was wrong. It just took me a while to realize it. So while I spent time back at the drawing board, I felt it was appropriate to go ahead and refund their (once) non-refundable deposits and let them know they were officially un-enrolled.
One thing I do know (and I’ve learned and re-learned this lesson many times in my life) is that, whenever I’m trying to FORCE something – a certain project or outcome for instance – and I’m doing the “square peg – round hole” thing while coming up against a TON of resistance... something is OFF. Big time.
It’s as if Source is trying to tell me “HEY! Can’t you see you need to let go here? Can’t you see you need to resign from being general manager of the Universe and let me take the wheel?”, but I’m so preoccupied with “making it work” or “getting it done” MY WAY or ON TIME that I’m totally missing the memo.
That’s exactly what the Secret Sauce 2012 launch felt like, even as far back as September last year when I first started scheduling the launch dates and researching retreat locations. While I couldn’t explain it logically, and I certainly wasn’t clear WHY it was happening, something deep in my interior felt OFF. I just wasn’t able to access the root of it...
Which leads me to my SECOND confession:
Although I didn’t know it until 3 days ago... Secret Sauce Society no longer matches my own lifestyle design plan.
Not like it did in 2011. Not in its current form anyway.
My life has changed. I now have a son. He IS my top priority. I’d be lying if I tried to deny that. This year IS going to be more unpredictable and way different than last year.
I WANT to travel to these amazing retreat destinations. Hosting these retreats and doing this life-changing work with these amazing women, it’s a dream come true for me. It really is my passion.
But... I also want more time with little Rhythm. I don’t want that time to compete with the time I allot to running my business and serving my clients. And really, there is no way I can know in advance whether 3, 6, or 9 months from now, I’m still going to feel lit up about working with 15 women, day in and day out for all of 2012, in the way that I originally promised I would, following suit with last year’s program.
So... had I gone through with Secret Sauce in 2012 the same way I did in 2011, I’d have been a hypocrite, an awful Lifestyle Design Coach, and a pretty crappy example of ‘life and business by delicious design’.... ‘life by nobody else’s rules but my own’.
Instead I’d have been the poster child for ‘business by default’... ‘business the way you THINK you have to do it because that’s how you did it BEFORE and how you SAID you’d do it again’...
I can’t do that. It goes against all that I believe in.
Still, I was TEMPTED to do it (regardless of what was tugging at my heart), and here are the main reasons WHY. *Note the “should-ing” on myself, the comparing tendency, the focus on “looking good”, and the origin of these thoughts. It’s very obvious they come from my meaning making MACHINE, the monkey-mind:
- “I’ll look bad if I change my mind now. It’s too late. It will look unprofessional, like I didn’t know what I was doing.”
- “If I don’t have a super high end program like this (like several of my mentors and colleagues do), what does that say about me, my market, and my business?”
Pretty ridiculous reasons to not be true to myself.
The more I looked at this, stared it right in the face, the more I saw that all of my ways of “checking in” for this decision were EXTERNAL, which is SO the opposite of what I teach.
In other words, rather than really tuning in to explore the aspects of my humanity that were really alive (what needed to be nourished and nurtured so that I could grow and so that I could feel FREE), I was spinning in my head about:
- what others were doing,
- what role I needed to be playing,
- how I measured up,
- how others perceived me,
- what people were wanting from me, and
- whether or not I was providing enough value.
I’m sure I don’t even have to tell you how icky that felt. It was a ton of self-imposed PRESSURE.
When what we’re “checking for” in the moment is all based upon the EXTERNAL, we lose our sacred connection to the internal. We lose our “hotline to heaven”. Our “private line to Providence” is temporarily disconnected and we don’t get clear answers. There’s a compulsive reactivity that emerges and our discernment for Right Action gets muddied.
Now, in hindsight, I can see that there was a compulsive need to be “on my game” versus “in my heart”. There was a wanting to craft and direct my ART to match what I thought my audience wanted.
And here’s the thing about that. When we play to make our audience happy, we end up with the wrong clients – people whose values and interests match the facade we’re putting on, not the real US.
There is so much cultural training that we have to have the right answer, have it all figured out. It’s deeply ingrained that asking questions is dangerous. Showing that we don’t know something, that we don’t have CERTAINTY... we open ourselves up to ridicule.
But really, when we open ourselves to being vulnerable, then we have nothing to hide. Nothing to lose. Nothing to protect ourselves from. Suddenly we’re okay with living IN the question. Which means we embrace the mystery, the wonder of “I don’t know”. The fear and the walls come crashing down. Then, ironically...
That makes us impenetrable. Invincible really.
And the best part is, in that same moment we also become magnetic to the people who we’re REALLY meant to work with. Those we’re meant to do great things with, experience the best of life’s adventures with... they come out of the woodwork and they find us.
That’s what I’m so excited about NOW looking ahead.
So my secret’s out. And there’s space for the new peeps to come in.
You know where I was mentally, for a bit. You’ve no doubt put two and two together that Secret Sauce Society 2012 has just undergone an emergency reconstructive surgery. And thanks to the lovely contrast I experienced during my moments of confusion, I now know TEN TIMES MORE CLEARLY exactly what I want to do moving forward.
So are you ready to hear about it?
Click play now to watch the short video below revealing the new plan for “Secret Sauce a la carte”. Find out why I’ve dropped the price by almost $10,000, why I believe this new model is better for you AND for me, and why I think you’ll agree with me that it blows last year’s model away!
Big changes, eh? I'm pretty blown away myself.
If you know you're ready to book your slot on the SSS Mexico retreat, don't put it off. If you do, not only will you risk losing your spot, but your airline ticket price will likely skyrocket every day that you procrastinate.
In case you missed them, here are just a few of the win/win benefits to the revised model.
The 'A La Carte' Model for SSS:
- Dramatically drops the price – before, you were going to have to pay for the retreat cost on top of the 9-month SSS tuition ($11,000+). Now the retreat cost and all gourmet meals are included! Lower tuition price makes it easier to afford the flight and have a little spending money left over.
- Grows the community (makes SSS way more accessible to more people who are blessedly deserving of the support, nourishment and training this program offers).
- Is less of a commitment and WAY LESS FUSS! (makes it much easier to plan around your life/family/business)
- Honors the people of the AY community (most of whom are BEGINNER solo-preneurs) and meets them where they're at versus pushing them to be somewhere they're not (financially and schedule-wise)... at least not YET.
- Honors MY lifestyle design plan and authentic desires, creating more ease and less friction/resistance for everyone. (Anytime any of us do ANYTHING out of obligation versus INSPIRATION, everybody pays for it!)
- Eliminates pressure that would otherwise be on my team and me to book and pay for the entire group's retreat expenses in advance (which cuts down on price for YOU because it's way less risk for us).
- Eliminates the automatic all-inclusive package deal that would've included AY programs you may or may not have wanted or used ('A La Carte' means you only pay for what you use.)
- Gives you ongoing access to the collective SSS community via our facebook alumni page – which gives you access to a super solid network of other leaders in lifestyle design, wellness, and conscious business.
- Awards you an instant 25% off any and all AY products/programs for the duration of your retreat month.
There's way more, but your head is probably already spinning with that list so I'll stop there and send you over to book your retreat.
BTW, I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on everything I’ve shared. If it struck a chord, please speak up and say so. I'll read every word.
Thanks so much for reading, and for being an irreplaceable part of this community.
I love you.