Inside: Craft a hope map for a brave and beautiful life: There are countless ways to handcraft a brave and beautiful life but if the Brave + Beautiful Community has piqued your curiosity, you can reach out for a chat to ask questions, or learn more and register here. We’ll begin a new session in September.
Years ago I gained great courage from a quote I heard regarding the power of telling our truths and being authentic as a catalyst for others to do the same. Krista O’Reilly-Davi-Digui, is a perfect example of just how true this is. Her courage in telling her truth, no matter how messy, has been an inspiration to me for years. And, in her Brave & Beautiful Membership community, she has provided a safe space where others can follow her lead in the company of like-minded women. Truly a gift!Sandra Kerr-Porcari
As a fellow sojourner with lived experience of pain and struggle, and a Holistic Health Coach and Joyful Living Educator walking my talk, I come alongside the members of the Brave + Beautiful Membership Community to offer hard-fought wisdom and compassionate, evidence-based mentoring, through a trauma-informed lens, to help them reconnect with their true self, re-envision their life, and remember their way to freedom. I serve brave, weary, and growth-minded humans from different corners of the world and life experience, mostly in the middle-season of life, who seek a gentler, kinder, and more values-aligned way of being and moving through the world.
The Brave +Beautiful Community is a place of tremendous collective wisdom, kind, welcoming, and as much I show up to serve the women who gather there, I too reap the benefits of this compassionate and brave community. It is a gift to come alongside the women who say yes to sharing life with me for awhile. A privilege to peer inside their hearts and lives, to hold space, encourage, challenge, and support them for a season of their life.
I see my work in general – and the B+B specifically – as a resting place. A safe place to come aside and rest awhile, to be strengthened, nourished from the roots up, and equipped for the journey ahead.
belief/values statement for the brave and beautiful community
My core vales are freedom, integrity, curiosity, compassionate relationship/community, and contribution. These serve as the foundation for my work and life.
I believe that you are beautiful and gifted and needed, more than enough, that joy and pain coexist in a full, meaningful life, and that our messiness or imperfection is not a sign of brokenness or inadequacy but simply part of being human in a messy world.
I believe in the beauty and importance of diversity – the dignity, equality, and common humanity of all people. That each of us only sees in part and when we come together and share our perspective, lived experience, and gifting, we form a powerful and beautiful whole.
I believe that YOU are the expert on your body and your life. We each bring gifts to the world and one of mine is helping others feel safe, seen, and heard as they do the important and life-giving (but sometimes scary and vulnerable) work of coming home to themselves.
I will walk with you but will not take responsibility for what is yours. I will listen well and remind you as needed that there is no one right way to BE human or do life; you get to come as you are. I will never pressure, manipulate, or speak over your lived experience but will treat you with the same respect I desire for myself. I will never require of you what I’m unwilling to walk out myself and will model integrity, self-compassion, and living brave and whole in every season.
how to build a brave and beautiful life: Primary Outcomes for members of the b+B
If I could offer you just ONE RESULT from your time in my membership, it would be that you BEFRIEND YOURSELF – that you trade judgement for curiosity, shame for self-compassion, and fear for agency. This alone would transform your experience of life.
It’s more likely that you’ll experience most or all of the following outcomes depending on your level of engagement:
- You will deepen self-awareness, build a trusting and respectful relationship with yourself, like and love who and how you are, release shame and judgment, and live with calm and confidence. You will acknowledge that you’re imperfect, messy, and in progress but also brave, capable, and wise. Both/and. You will use your voice, set healthy boundaries, and honour your wiring.
- You will quiet the noise of comparison, perfectionism, and fear, craft a new, exciting life vision and tell the truth about what you want and need for wholeness and joy. You will practice self-compassion, mindfulness, conscious simplicity, deepen emotional literacy, and make peace with the messiness of life so that you live whole, brave, and on purpose in every season.
- You will practice the power of tiny intentional steps or imperfect action to handcraft a life that feels like home. You will build a sense of agency, increase resilience, live with mind-body-emotional health, and otherwise practice a gentler and more compassionate way of moving through the world. You will release what no longer serves and remember your way to freedom.
I read and loved Krista’s Life in Progress emails for a while before deciding to join the Brave and Beautiful community. Krista is not only a truly gifted writer, but her take on how to approach life and all its craziness has been a godsend. I look forward to her “mostly-weekly” emails and often forward them to my daughter. I decided to join the Brave and Beautiful community in June when Krista opened it up to new members. Although it’s only been 2 months, I have learned so much and look forward to our new units and activities. I also love that we have live Zoom calls and can interact with her and with one another. Each one of us gets to benefit from her wisdom and advice and I am so grateful for that. I am amazed at the wealth of information Krista provides … not only citing relevant resources but enlightening us with her own personal reflections and revelations. I plan to be a part of this amazing group for a long time!Amy Dolinky
YOUR LIFE IN PROGRESS: coming home to ourselves is a messy and beautiful process
Growth or becoming our most honest and healthy selves is more circular than linear and there is no one-size-fits-all, clear cut road map to wholeness, purpose, and joy for every human. Each new season of life invites us to journey deeper, to stay open to joyful possibility and learn to sit with discomfort and uncertainty, to build upon the scaffolding of yesterday, to make new connections and increase in wisdom and understanding.
And yet, pausing to check-in and notice our growth or how far we’ve come instills a sense of pride, it offers evidence that we are capable of doing hard things, and of the power of one intentional step or breath or conscious choice after another. It deepens our commitment to the work when life feels hard and we want to quit.
As we work together in the Brave + Beautiful Community I’ll offer regular invitations through prompts, exercises, and in conversation during our Zoom calls, to help you pause and check-in, pivot as needed, and to share your progress in ways you feel comfortable. It’s inspiring to hear how others are in progress too! Story is powerful and one of the wonderful gifts of the B+B is sharing life together and learning from each other.
I weave together colourful threads of exploration and study to inform my work: mindfulness, self-compassion work, somatic therapy and regulation strategies, polyvagal theory and nervous system regulation, tools for building self-awareness (including the Enneagram, high sensitivity, introversion/extroversion, centers of intelligence, identity and story telling, working with neurodiversity), conscious simplicity, mindset, tools for supporting/improving mind-body-emotional health and resilience, functional nutrition and holistic lifestyle practices, habit or change formation and neuroscience, a seasonal living framework, gleaning from the health benefits of nature, and more.
I joined the Brave & Beautiful Community to have a group of growth-minded women to journey through this season of my life with. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to learn new strategies for living with purpose as well as supporting and celebrating other women as we share our lives together as part of the community. Brave & Beautiful is a wonderful investment and I would highly recommend making the commitment.Shana H
the Brave and Beautiful Community success path: A HOPE MAP FOR A BRAVE AND BEAUTIFUL LIFE
The following is a rough guide to help you self-identify or pinpoint where you currently land in this season of your life. When we know where we are, then we can carve an honest, compassionate, and compelling path forward. I don’t believe that life is linear – we circle through different seasons of life and there is no shame or judgement in this. It is as it should be. Yet for the purpose of helping you figure out if the B+B is a good fit for you, I’ve created the following steps or success path. If you see yourself somewhere in steps 2-6 then the Brave + Beautiful Community might be a great fit for you.
1. You’re in Crisis, at Low levels of health, or in need of 1:1 Support
You feel stuck, alone, unseen, unheard. Unhappy lots of the time or maybe with live with a constant undercurrent of anxiety yet aren’t sure why or struggling hard with your mental health. Your mood is easily impacted by external circumstances/others. You feel busy, harried, overwhelmed, stressed, unhealthy. You’ve spent lots of energy trying to squish yourself into an ill-fitting box for belonging, conforming, performing. Low self worth, poor body image, mean self-talk. Shame, self-judgment, and a vicious inner critic play a big role in your life. The truth is, you never feel good enough. You defer happiness – “one day” you’ll allow yourself to feel happy when. Stories circle in your brain: you ruminate about the past, worry about the future, rehash old conversations or let your brain spin with negative thoughts. Rules, rigidity, jumping through hoops, addictive patterns, bullying yourself for being imperfect. You may be in need of healing from trauma, addiction, or in crisis and need professional medical or therapeutic support above all. You may not be ready for this type of soul-stretching, vulnerable work or need other types of help first to love yourself through this hard season of life. You may not feel worthy of support. You may need 1:1 care before you’re resourced and feel safe enough to join a community. Or you may be looking instead for a community offering a specific type of niched-down support.
2. You’re curious, desire a more hopeful possibility, but feel easily discouraged
You’re afraid and hoping for change, you may have done years of therapy, and still wonder if real change is possible, if life can be better, if you’ll ever learn to love yourself. You don’t know who you are or you’re in a big life transition and need help finding yourself again. You choose to dip your toe in and take one small step at a time. Burgeoning courage, lower self-confidence. Need new, healthy role models beyond your familiar community and find those in the B+B. You commit to engaging because it’s good for you, even if you don’t always feel like doing so. Learning to pick yourself up when you fall. You’re opening up tentatively to new paradigm/possibilities. Anxious, less than, comparison, perfectionism, fear, and a mean inner critic are loud in your life. You feel guilt around resting and feel perpetually behind. You feel jealousy or envy and anger and then feel bad about this. Trying new ideas on for size. Get distracted easily. When life is hard you may decide it’s your fault. You look back often and tend toward anxiety and rumination or projecting far ahead rather than living fully present. Autopilot. Looking for freedom but keep picking up another set of chains. You need space to rest, repair, and to be equipped for what lies ahead. You benefit from consistent encouragement and reminders that you’re not alone.
3. You’re practicing, walking lighter, and hopeful most of the time
You are being challenged to question, examine, challenge the status quo. You are doing hard work to take responsibility for your mind-body-emotional health and to get honest about what you want and need. You’re beginning to learn more about who and how you are, shame and judgement-free. You’re practicing asking for help and staying with discomfort. Practicing the pause. Practicing presence. Sometimes you tilt a little far or get pulled off course, or get distracted by comparison or shiny things. Less triggered or reactive than before. You still struggle with allowing yourself to feel joy because what if something bad comes around the next bend. You may want to quit or occasionally fall back into old patterns. It’s hard to see your progress at times. You benefit from outside witnesses and accountability and are deeply grateful for the B+B community even if you don’t always speak up but you’re watching and learning and feel a new spark of hope and joyful possibility.
4. You’re committed, have a clear life vision, and in significant and exciting transition
You’re seeking healthy community and releasing old, less healthy relationships. The B+B is a joyful part of your life, a life-line even. You are finding more freedom, confidence, permission. You are building a healthy and trusting relationship with yourself. You’re learning to give yourself permission to rest. Clear on your strengths and weaknesses. Taking imperfect action. Gentle rhythms and tools, habits, practices. A new lightness and exhale. Joy and pain coexist in your life. You practice “both/and.” Boundaried and resourced. You want to give back. Self doubt still arises at times – you’re human. Learning to use your voice. Learning to acknowledge the truth that you are gifted and lovable and though you’re in progress you are deserving of love and compassion right now. Crafting a compelling life vision. Allow yourself to be seen and heard. More curiosity less judgment. Mindfulness and body awareness increasing. Self-forgiveness. You’re quicker to notice your old triggers and default patterns, and quick to gently redirect. You laugh more freely and heartily these days.
5. You’re going deep, experiencing radical growth, and becoming your own best friend
You’re living awake and engaged, practicing self-compassion and learning to honour your wiring. Conscious simplicity. Refining your voice and vision. Agency. Deep roots of self-awareness and self-compassion. You understand your story and are clear on your values and who you choose to be. Mind-body-emotion healthy. Go deeper not wider, strip away what no longer serves. You might be experiencing radical/powerful growth/becoming/healing. Relationship changes. You have a full life and meaningful relationships but remain grateful for the gift of brave and growth-minded community; you offer encouragement to the newer members. Less shame and ego driven. Boosting emotional literacy. You are clear on what enough looks/sounds/feels like for you in each season. You may circle back here for a season if you go through crisis, trauma, or profound loss. You’re not going backwards, but deeper into growth. The skills you’ve developed hold you fast so that you tilt but do not break. You know how to ask for and receive help. You’re happy much of the time, even when circumstances are challenging. You’re confident you’re on the right path.
6. You’re walking in freedom and confidence and have come home to yourself
You are living brave, whole, and on purpose. Your life is imperfect (because that’s real life!) but it is intentional, values-aligned, and feels like home. You practice Seasonal living, make space for purposeful rest. Space for the beauty and wisdom in every season. You are the expert on your own life. You like and love yourself well. You look inward for direction more often than outward. You live with less fear about the ups and downs of life; with peace about the messiness of life. You recognize your strength and resilience. You look back proud and amazed at how far you’ve come. You offer your gifts. You celebrate with others in their success and joy and sit with them in their sorrow without bypassing, advice-giving, or trying to fix. You look ahead at what’s next and to set your course but then pull your mind and heart back to today. You feel safe and at home in your body and your life, good in the skin you’re in. Balanced awareness. Deep roots. Permission for rest, play, pleasure AND doing hard things. You both benefit from and contribute meaningfully to the B+B. Life is always messy and offers up new challenges and invitations to growth. You feel fully alive.
7. You’re rested, resourced, and ready to continue the journey
You’re feeling the call that it’s time to move on. The B+B is not your forever home. You will circle deeper and deeper through the seasons as long as you have breath within you. You are a wise woman. A role model. An agent of change. You hold the door and pave the way for those behind you. You lift up others when they stumble and model dignity and grace. Comfortable in your life and skin. Vibrant. Whole. You know your worth and have a healthy support system in place. You love the community here but there’s something else calling your name and drawing your attention. You have learned to trust this inner sense of direction. A new level of growth, a new community or method of support/education, a new season. You turn your heart and gaze toward what’s next, calm, rooted, a little nervous. It too will be good.
There are countless ways to handcraft a brave and beautiful life but if the Brave + Beautiful Community has piqued your curiosity, you can reach out for a chat to ask questions, or learn more and register here. We’ll begin a new session in September. Oh, and there are
three two pay-what-you-can spots available to people on my email list.