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Meet Sally Hope

Motorcycle-riding renegade life coach and leader of the Wildheart Revolution. Loves: Hot-pink lipstick, puns, guns, crosswords, two-steppin', and french manicures.

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I’m not mad at mimosas, but this is ridiculous

In my last email we talked about burning it all down so you can rise from the ashes as the person you’ve always wanted to be…the person you were meant to be before the traumas of life made you someone else. And this week I was thinking about the aftermath of that. What happens after the fire?

Once you walk down that path, things in life start to line up to corroborate that decision. Friendships dissolve or they change, and lifelong beliefs about yourself and your life can start to disappear, which is my favorite part of change. The time is now.

I’ve always been an intense and complex person. I feel things deeply. I tend to find myself in situations that are on really extreme sides of the spectrum, no matter what I do in my life. Extreme highs and extreme lows. I’d like to blame this on my Scorpio-ness. :)

But I’ve learned in my life to view these things about myself as “too much.” That my darkness as well as my brightest light is hard for people to handle. And so I dimmed them both to create a more middle ground that folks are more comfortable with. But this makes me feel alone. And not seen. And it doesn’t allow anyone to really know me.

I’m imagining you have your own version of this. You might not do the extreme Scorpio thing, but I imagine that you’ve learned that however you are, how you naturally do things, how you naturally want to respond to situations isn’t enough or it isn’t right.

You’ve probably had partners or friends reflect this back to you. Where you leave feeling not enough. You learn that the way you do things is wrong. And so you try to change to please these either real or imagined people who you see as judging you. And you get dim too. And your creativity fades. And your “cosmic twinkle” (as my pediatrician dad used to call that spark that you’re born with) disappears.

When people talk about self-love, they usually talk about it in terms of “putting yourself first” and “self-care” like taking more time for yourself via bubble baths a mimosas with the girls, and while I’m a fan of all of those things, the way it’s usually talked about doesn’t have enough depth for me.

The way I see self-love is about getting your cosmic twinkle back. About knowing who you are deep down and truly and unwaveringly accepting that person. About showing the world THAT light. About not telling yourself you’re bad or wrong for being who you are, but instead honoring, cherishing and devoting your life to loving that person like you would to a child or your very best friend in the world.

And when you come from this place, you make good decisions for yourself, you set better boundaries, you go deep with the people that deserve it and you turn away from those that don’t. You don’t give yourself away. You know when to say yes and when to say no to people and situations and you don’t question that or look back.

This is what happens after the fire.

But hardly any of us know how to actually do this. Especially not when the loop is going on in our minds about how “too much” or “not enough” we are. But I’ve found a way to lay down the sword. To bow before ourselves as the magnificent beings we are. It’s a practice, like anything else, but it works. And that is exactly what I will be spending 40 days working on.

I’ve mentioned in previous emails that I’m putting together a new meditation challenge this month and while I can’t give you the details right now (it’s coming on Monday though so stay tuned) know that it has depth and will help you burn down anything that isn’t total love and devotion to you and yourself. I believe that self-love (or lack thereof) is at the root of most, if not all, our problems. I know you’re thinking “but what about…..” and I’m going to talk about this next week.

Whether or not you join us for the meditation is up to you and even if you can’t, I wanted to give you something you can do on your own to start down this path. It isn’t the meditation we’re doing for the next 40 days, but it is one that helps to put you in the place of changing the conversation about your value and worth. It’s super easy. Here’s how you do it:

1) Come into a comfortable seated or lying down position

2) Place your hands where they feel the most comfortable (on your knees, on your heart, in your lap)

3) Close your eyes and breathe long and deep

4) Think about something in your life that this email applies too…where are you not totally loving and honoring yourself? Where are you letting other people or your negative thoughts change how you feel about yourself. Where do you want to feel differently in your life? Put that in your minds eye.

5) Put on this song and sing along (it will totally make you cry…99% guaranteed)

 

6) Come back here and let me know how it goes. Did you try it? I want to know about it. Did you cry? :) Post a comment and let me know.

It’s only five minutes. Give that to yourself today. And mark your calendar for Monday when the cart for the next meditation challenge will be open, where you can learn to never let anyone or any thought mess with you again. Promise.

You ready to fly?

Thought so.

Sally

Burning It Down

This is a time of transformation. A time of change. Not only because of the changing seasons or because the time of year (school years end, people graduate) but because life is reaching its boiling point.

A time when you realize all the things you’ve already done that have gotten you as far as you are now, and you stand at the top of that mountain and realize that it’s time for a new mountain.

Recently I’ve been making a book of quotes for my favorite 8th grader who is super scared to go into high school. And as I’m gathering advice for her, and remembering what it was like to be on that precipice, I’m reminded of a lyric in a song that’s been on repeat lately. It goes…

“Maybe it’s time to let the old ways die…”

Transformation isn’t a word to take lightly. It’s not as flippant as the metaphorical ending one chapter so you can start the next.

No. It’s not a new chapter.

It’s a whole new book.

To transform means to make a complete change. A thorough change. It’s the caterpillar that never again looks like a caterpillar once it becomes a butterfly. A change where in order for it to occur you have to kill off everything before it.

But we don’t usually do this. Instead we try to change by bringing our old selves with us.

We try to change using the same beliefs and thoughts that got us here in the first place.

We try to change by dipping a toe in the water and then we wonder why our lives go back to the same thing we always had.

We can’t use old thoughts to create a new life. We have to let the old things die

I pulled a card from one of my oracle decks right before I wrote this and here’s what it said:

“The world is changing and to be part of its glorious unfolding, you are invited to do this deep work. Miracles are waiting for you once you set yourself free and allow your memories of your past to lead you to your truth. Transformation comes with a price. Leaving your old self behind isn’t easy, but it’s necessary to become the one you’ve been waiting for. Summon your courage. You will rise up from this mess, and only beauty and strength will remain.”

So I leave you with the questions I’ve been asking myself lately…

  • What in me needs to completely die in order for me to be who I’m meant to be?
  • What pattern of thinking needs to completely transform?
  • What way of being needs to be cut by the sword?
  • What ways do I need to burn myself down so I can be the Phoenix and rise out of the ashes?

And I don’t mean in a small way. I mean in a big enough way that you won’t even recognize yourself. So dramatic that you’ll have to get to know yourself again. And others will too.

What needs to happen to be the person you’ve always wanted to be?

The person you’ve deep down always known you’re supposed to be before the traumas and pains of life made you someone else. Someone scared and small and full of fear.

I wanna know THAT person.

Can they come out to play?

That is up to you.

You will rise up from this mess. I promise.

Sally

P.s. This is what my next 40 day meditation challenge is ALL about. It’s all about rising from our ashes. Becoming that person we’re supposed to be. To completely transform. Bandaids aren’t working anymore. It’s time for a total renewal. I’m in the cocoon with you. Ready to fly and transform. I’ll be talking more about this meditation in the coming weeks but just know that there is something you can do to work through this and you don’t have to do it alone.

P.p.s. If you want to listen to that song Google “Maybe It’s time” from the Star Is Born Soundtrack

P.p.p.s. If you want to take this one step further right now, journal out the questions above. And answer them with your opposite hand you usually write with. Let the answers come to you.

How To Let Go

 

The grass is finally starting to turn green here in Montana which means that not only is it lawn mowing season (I’ll take that over shoveling any day), but it also means that it’s spring! And so naturally a lot of the collective conversation going on is all about releasing the stagnation in our lives (winter) and birthing ourselves anew (detox) for spring.

And this has me thinking about letting go. Letting go of the things holding us back. The stagnation of winter and life in general.

We tend to think that letting go is something that happens all of a sudden. An act you do once and then your life is different. A line in the sand that you cross and everything on the other side of it miraculously and suddenly disappears. Things you’ve probably held onto for years.

But I’ve found that letting go is not that simple. It’s not an act. It doesn’t just happen once. But rather it’s an intention you set and have to remind yourself of over and over again when you find yourself jumping back over the line to the place where you just were. An intention to the focus not just on the thing you’re letting go of, but also on what you hope to gain for your own life from doing it. And when you focus there…the letting go happens more easily. Or rather, the attachment lessens. This happened for me recently.

I get a daily mantra from my Louise Hay calendar and this one has been helping me a lot lately: “My heart forgives and let’s go. Inner peace is my goal.”

How nice is this? “Inner peace is my goal.”

Because if you look at your life and the things that are weighing heavy on your heart, wouldn’t it be so nice to feel peaceful about them instead? We can’t usually change what happens in our life, but we can strive for peace around it all.

So I’ve been trying this. I say this ANYTIME I start to obsess about things that are hurtful, beyond my control, from my past, and worries about the future.

What I love about it is that I don’t necessarily have to know “how” to forgive or let go, I just have to know I want to and I keep reminding myself of that. And that’s enough and I feel less bothered by all the things on my mind, which is a huge win in my book.

Maybe you’d like to try it too?

So here’s my question to you…

What in your life do you feel you’ve been hanging onto? What is something you’ve wanted or needed to “let go” of? What is one small thing you can do today to intend that you have peace around this?

Write it down on a piece of paper and remind yourself you wrote it and let that be enough.

Love

Sally

Ps Here are two ways to take that even further:

  1. Meditate for 3-20 minutes repeating the mantra “my heart forgives and let’s go. Inner peace is my goal”
  2. Google “Brad Yates I can’t let it go!” and do his tapping video. It’s so great!

P.p.s I’ve been working on “letting go” of the ways in which I’m mean to myself and it has been so incredibly helpful. I’ll be sharing more about that soon. Make sure you’re on my list to be the first to know about it. <3

Getting Through The Unthinkable

I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write about this week as everything felt a bit trite after last week’s share. I thought about writing about the positive mind since I just taught a workshop on that last night. Or about writing about how to reconnect to the “joy” in your life after listening to a pretty annoying (but super helpful) podcast about it.

I thought about writing about the “WHY GOD WHY!?” moment I had collapsed in my stairwell this weekend and how I pulled myself out of it by using the tools in the Joy podcast: “Find the things that bring you joy and do more of them in your life” (duh). Apparently what brought me joy was putting together a rad outfit and fun makeup and hair and going out with my friends to see a dirty rock n roll show and running into a bunch of exes while looking fly. Zing!

But as I started to write all of those posts, they just felt a bit flat. I don’t know why I didn’t want to write about any of that. And instead all I kept thinking about were the emails from people in the past couple weeks who have responded to my last two posts about my breakup and not feeling like my shiny self.

I kept thinking about the email I got forwarded from a well-known blogger who had her own “surprise!” breakup and how she’s coping with it, including creating a killer Spotify Playlist and how she’s not calling it a “break-up” but rather a “break-upgrade” (hell yeah sister) and listening to songs that would make anyone want to stand taller, stronger, and occasionally smash things.

I kept thinking about the people I know in my life who are going through extremely difficult things like divorces, cancer, being ghosted by people they love, caregiving, chronic illnesses, the loss of their jobs, miscarriages, CPS issues, and just being so sad that all they want is a “dad hug” (me too girl…me too).

And then I think about how all of these people still get up every morning and take care of their kids, reach out for help, reach out to others to help them, volunteer their time, get their needs met, sing songs, write poetry, go to therapy, go to doctors appointments and put their hearts on display for everyone to see and I think about how brave and courageous and incredible that is.

That people in the world can be in so much pain and still show up with beauty and grace and still give to others and go on living in the face of so much hurt. We are all so much stronger than we realize.

Continuing to get up each day while you’re grieving is courageous. Lending a helping hand to someone else when you’re suffering yourself is compassion personified. Showing up for yourself and your loved ones when you have to duck into the bathroom to sob now and again takes strength. And I just keep seeing that over and over in my life.

No one gets out of here unscathed, but we can make it all a lot easier on ourselves and each other while we’re here by loving ourselves and loving others. So I guess this post is to say THANK YOU.

Thank you to the people who have reached out and said “me too” and “you’re not alone.” Thank you to every person who is or ever has been in pain and has kept going. Thank you to the people who are still there for their kids even when they are going through the unthinkable. Thank you for showing the world and me and everyone around you that pain doesn’t have to mean the end of anything but rather an opportunity to experience more goodness in the world. The bright side of things. The light in the darkness.

I still do want to share with you the info about the Positive Mind that I taught in my workshop because it applies here too since it’s all about how to see the light in our lives even amongst the dark. I made a video for you that explains this and I share a meditation for it in case you need a little extra boost of lightness. Check out this video to find out why the Positive Mind (and Negative Mind for that matter) is so important.


The Positive Mind Meditation

This practice opens the heart center and the feelings of the positive self. It is a gesture of happiness. The hand mudra became a symbol for blessing and prosperity.

Posture: Sit with an erect spine. Curl the ring finger and little finger into each palm. Bend the thumbs over top of them to lock them into place. Keep the first two fingers straight. Bring the arms so the elbows are by the sides, and the hands are by the shoulders with the two fingers of each hand pointing  straight up. Bring the forearms and hands forward to an angle of 30 degrees from the vertical. Press the shoulders and elbows back firmly but comfortably. The palms face forward.

Eyes and Mental Focus: Close the eyelids. Roll the eyes up gently and concentrate at the brow point, the Third Eye area at the top of the nose where the eyebrows would meet.

Breath: Create a steady, slow, deep, and complete breath.

Mantra: Mentally pulse rhythmically from the brow point out to Infinity the sounds: Saa taa naa maa

Saa is Infinity. Taa is Life. Naa is Death. Maa is Rebirth/transformation. This describes the cycle of life. This kriya brings a total mental balance to the psyche. The entire mantra means, “I meditate on Truth, Truth that I am.”

Time: Try it for 40 days. During that time eat lightly and speak only truth directly from your heart. Practice for 11 to 62 minutes. (or whatever gets you on your mat to do it)

To End: Inhale deeply and exhale three times. Then open and close the fists several times. Relax.

© The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan

Here’s me explaining it.

So now I want to know…where do you sit right now? Are you collapsed in a stairwell experiencing the unthinkable? Are you feeling strong and reaching out to those who need help? Or are you both? Leave a comment below and let me know what you do in times of challenge to help you get through. Either way, thanks for showing up today and every day.

And lastly…do you know someone who is strength personified? Or someone who swoops into help when they are needed? Share this with them to say thanks. XOXO

P.s. Here’s a pic of my super fun ladies night.

Her breath on my neck and I could have sworn it was….

Last night, my dog breathed on my neck as she nuzzled up to me on my pillow and I could have sworn it was him. 

Her warm breath on my neck after a deep inhale and a big sigh. The breathing…in and out…as our ribs ebbed and flowed against each other in the same rhythm. The warmth from our bodies snuggled up together. And for a second, I thought it was a person next to me.

The last person who was next to me exactly two months ago today. One minute being the ribs moving in and out next to mine and the breath on my neck and the next minute completely gone, as if it never even happened.

Vanished.

Like a magic trick.

And like in magic, you’re left wondering…how did he do that? How did he just disappear? And you stare in disbelief while trying to retrace his steps, and yours, looking behind every curtain, not knowing which sleight of hand you missed, or what was happening underneath it all while you were looking elsewhere.

It was a sunny Saturday when he came to get his stuff, every item of his waiting for him in a trash bag in the laundry room. Clothes that I had folded and put into his section of the closet so many times before, a big tub of honey he had brought over, silly items like frozen peas and a tray of change, giving them all back to him. Not because I don’t like money or honey or peas, but because I don’t want to be reminded of him and how sad and disappointed I feel every time I see those things in my house.

“I don’t want this to end,” I said as we hugged.

“I can’t give you what you want,” he said before he turned away and walked through the garage for the very last time.

That was the last time I heard from him or saw him in two months.

Which is surprising because up to that point, we were planning our lives together.

Coming up with a nighttime routine for the kids. Holding hands across the table at dinner. Staring into each other’s eyes before bed. Just days before about to book tickets to California for Christmas and joking about next year’s Halloween costume, negotiating a trip to Ireland in March and what to make for dinner for the kids the following week. And then one small fight about plans and a two hour phone conversation later, it was over.

Now, all traces of him in a trash bag in the back of his car. And my dog on his side of the bed reminding me that there used to be breath on my neck from a person who I thought really loved me. But never actually did. Another magic trick I must have missed while I was looking somewhere else. 

Breakups are hard because they poke at the most tender places inside of us. The places where our biggest fears live that beg the questions…”am I not a lovable person? Am I not good enough? Did I do something wrong? Why don’t they want me?” They make us feel unwanted and broken. They show us that our biggest fears might be true…could be true.

And so you try hard not to, but you spin anyway in the aftermath, always looking for some proof that you mattered and weren’t insignificant and all that time loving and caring wasn’t wasted. Wanting proof that you’re someone worth missing. But they don’t give that to you.

And I’ve been thinking a lot about this stuff for the past two months, I’ve realized something I’ve tried to learn before, which is that getting validation would be really nice and would feel good, and in those moments late at night with Gia in my bed, I want it so badly, but needing it from them in order to feel ok perpetuates a bigger issue, which is that you don’t already know it within yourself. We’re often told that it isn’t anyone else’s job to make us feel whole and worthy and lovable, that that’s our job in life. That is never so apparent as it is when you have a broken heart and an ex who just disappeared.

It forces us to see that it’s our job to love and honor and appreciate ourselves so so much that even when a breakup happens, it doesn’t make us feel unworthy and broken. It might be tender, but we can still stand strong knowing that we did our best and are wonderful and worthy and incredible and sometimes, things just don’t work out because they aren’t meant to for whatever reason we often don’t know until later. Easier said than done…trust me, I know.

Loving myself wholeheartedly isn’t natural to me. I grew up with a story of being abandoned. I took on the story that I wasn’t worth sticking around for. That I’m super special, only part of the time, and ultimately, when I really need you, you can’t or won’t be there for me. That’s my go-to her-story that I play out in every relationship.

But this time I’ve been focusing on the other piece…of loving and accepting myself. Of finding those places in myself that feel good and special and worthy all on their own. Of filling my own bucket when I ask the question “Am I a lovable person?” Working on knowing in my heart that I am. When I do this, it makes me feel better. And so late at night, when I feel sad or scared or abandoned, I put my hand on my heart and I say “I love you I love you I love you” over and over again until I start to feel it.

I didn’t want to share this story with you because it makes me feel like a failure (again) in the one area I care the most about…love and relationships. But I vowed to be more honest in case you’re going through something in your own life that feels hard and tender, so I can share anything that’s been helping me, in case it can also help you.

I’ve been spending 30 minutes a day, every day in a meditation focusing on self-compassion, which comes in handy when I want to go down the spiral of how unlovable I am. And I can’t say that it’s going perfectly for me, I’m still sad, and hurt sometimes, but I can say that it is helping a TON and that the spirals are less severe. That the good days are more frequent. The lows don’t last as long. Change takes some time.

And so I don’t know what you’re going through in your own life, but if you’ve ever felt caught off guard by a breakup, or felt like your life suddenly changed in a way that you weren’t expecting or wanting know you are not alone. Know that it won’t always feel like this. Know that there are things you can do to feel better. And maybe…this meditation can help you feel loved and ok despite everything…it is for me. 

See the meditation below. And if this post resonated with you at all, please share in the comments below and share it with anyone you think needs to see it.

Here’s to filling our own cups,

Sally

COMPASSION MEDITATION

Compassion gives you the strength to go through suffering and yet, feel no pain. There is absolutely no grace without compassion. Read the translation and if “God” doesn’t resonate with you, use Universe or whatever does. Whatever higher power that helps you.

Posture: Sit in Easy Pose with your spine straight.

Mudra: Cross the middle fingers over the index fingers of each hand. Place thumbs on mounds of your pinky finger, which is just at the base of the pinkie.

Mantra: Sing with a lyrical version of Rakhay Rakhanahaar.

I use this one:

Eyes: Closed.

Movement:

On the first line of the mantra, bring the hands up and press the left hand over the right press over your heart center.

On the second line of the mantra, lower the arms so the wrists rest on the knees.

Continue alternating in this way, but keep the hands at the chest for the last line that repeats twice.

Then briefly lower and raise them again for the first line.

Rakhay rakhanhaar aap ubaariun

Gur kee pairee paa-eh kaaj savaariun

Hoaa aap dayaal manho na visaariun

Saadh janaa kai sung bhavjal taariun

Saakat nindak dusht khin maa-eh bidaariun

Tis Saahib kee tayk naanak manai maa-eh

Jis simrat sukh ho-eh saglay dookh jaa-eh

Jis simrat sukh ho-eh saglay dookh jaa-eh

Translation:

God (or Universe) himself is looking out for us,
gives us the light, and takes care of our affairs.
God is merciful and never forgets us.
God guides us, giving us good people to help us.
God does not allow hurt to come to us.
I take comfort in the thought of God.
When I remember God, I feel peaceful and happy
and all my pain departs

(Briefly lower the hands and then continue.)


Time:
 Continue for 31 minutes. (or as little as feels good to you…I recommend 7 for newbies)

The Teachings of Yogi Bhajan ©2008

P.s. Here’s the cutie keeping me warm at night…

Wildheart Revolution