Exploring Potential Over 50+ Years Old

At what point in our lives do we take the foot off the gas and say...

"That's it, I'm too old, weak, fat, tired.."

When do we put the breaks on and stop exploring our potential, or trade in our dreams, or goals for a routine day with nothing much happening.  

I don't want to ever stop exploring my potential. I never want to stop growing and becoming, because each year I get better, wiser, stronger, more in tuned with my dreams and more inspired by my potential.  

There is no end to our potential.  That's a myth. 

Keep believing, keep dreaming, keep growing. 

Life is a revelation. 

Just click on the little You Tube logo below this video and it will take you to the site to play...

What If The Pain Never Ends?

Lately, I've been coping with more pain than usual and trying in vain to find some relief.  I've noticed that by the early afternoon, I'm exhausted, tight lipped and short.  My only escape from it has been to sleep.  

My Dad, the original cynic, used to tell me that:

"Moniker, pain builds character, ... for more pain."

If I am left to interpret his prophetic statement, then I'll assume he means that it's a given, like paying taxes and breathing, it's part of life.  As pain continues to have it's way with my psyche, the fear burrows into my dreams. In middle of the night, last night, I recall sitting up and asking Austin in a panic..

What if the pain never ends? 

oh, my Dad would have a good laugh at that one, deeming it rhetorical, no doubt. This morning I considered canceling my appointment with my coach, Jessica, because I knew "pain" would end up being a topic, because, that's how we roll. 

I discovered that exploring pain is even more painful then the pain itself, but it's also productive in providing relief.

Some ground we covered: 


Being with pain: What is that like for me? 

  • Sometimes it feels too big for me to handle or hold.
  • It makes me feel powerless, trapped and imprisoned. 

What does this feeling of prison bring up for me?

  • It makes me think about my life and having come so far in terms of being free from some pretty heinous emotional pain, only to now be plagued with physical pain. WTF is THAT all about? 
  • Feeling like a pain free life is always somehow just out of reach for me.  (Just you Monica!  everyone else has a pain free life!)
  • Feeling like the self-compassion well is dried up, or like the last drop of self- compassion essential oil has been used up, it's essence, GONE. 

If pain had some geography what would it be? 

  • A Wall. 
  • I just come to a place where there is a wall of pain.
  • There's just me against the wall and I'm so tired of coming up against "the wall".

What else? 

  • The pain makes makes me ashamed, it makes me needy, and I fear being seen as if I'm somehow broken and useless.
  • That this pain is being "done to me" or perhaps I choose the pain in another life (lol- because that's the sick twisted thinking you can count on me for!).

What would pain be if it were something to practice being with? 

  • Patience. Oh how I hate you. 
  • Patience can be a useful practice when one is healing. 

What can "be" in the meantime? 

  • Rest
  • It's ok to rest when I can't do anything else. 
  • It's ok to be tired of the pain.
  • It's ok to be pissed off about it. 
  • It's ok to to be afraid.

Still in pain with no resolutions, and yet somehow, I'm feeling way better than I was. 

MASKS : Are You Wearing One?

Authenticity and transparency are buzzwords in the Coaching Industry, Corporate America, and Political culture. And, there is no doubt there is tremendous value in honing the skill of showing up "real".  But- it's not always that easy.

As human beings we learn at a very young age how to morph into what ever will serve us, protect us, give us more attention, make us more seen or less, make us more likable, lovable, valuable, cool, smart, attractive, acceptable, and enough. We are trained in our formative years to work at “fitting in”. This is when we begin to build our repertoire of personalized masks. Growing up I had slew of them. I had the giggle mask, happy mask, fearless mask, capable mask. As I grew older I added the apology mask, daring mask, I got it all handled mask (a step up from the capable mask).  I had a plethora of masks to choose from and they served me well, until they didn’t. I found myself feeling hollowed out, insignificant, which of course motivated me to create more masks, until my life hit a wall and I was smacked down by my own in-authenticity. My non-transparent, co-dependent nature had created so much exhaustion, and such a deep profound loneliness, that I was breaking out in hives and becoming physically ill. My marriage was the mask of all masks and I was suffocating under it, my Being was dying a slow death. This may sound dramatic but I kid you not, it is how I felt.  I had de-selfed, detached from who I was, so much so I couldn’t remember who I was. That is what happens when we use masks to show the world what we think it wants from us, instead of Being who we are. It is no wonder that often times I will have a client show up to a coaching session with the expression, “I don’t know what I’m feeling, or how I feel about that, or what I want.” It gets tricky to identify what feelings are authentic and what is a projected feeling from what we think the world wants from us. 

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How do you choose to show up?

Are you wearing a mask or are you being transparent?

Are you using your authentic voice or saying what others want to hear…

The way to begin to identify if you are wearing a mask or being “real” is to notice if there is another conversation going on within your Self, while you are performing on the outside. Notice how you feel when the conversation is over, and what thoughts you are having about the exchange. It is that simple, it’s simply noticing where you are in your body. Are you feeling exhausted or energized is another indicator. Even a fierce conversation (Susan Scott, founder of FIERCE, https://fierceinc.com/about/leadership) can leave you feeling energized when you are authentic because you are speaking from your truth, instead of making up stuff that is in-authentic and has nothing to do with who you really are.

Ask your Self to step away from the mask, and dare to be you. Train the world to be in relationship with you, instead of the world training you to be someone else.


The capitalized words above are not an editing error.  

You Start Dying Slowly

Last year, was my year of YES. 

I was intentional about it because I'd gotten to the point where I felt like I was slowly dying inside.
I mean it, I had become so bored with the same old, same old and I was restless for something different but had no idea where to begin to make changes. The only thing I did know was that I had to start saying "YES" when opportunities crossed my path, even to things that were outside my comfort zone.  

Being intentional has it's perks because magically, new opportunities did begin to appear .. except Instead of saying YES, I would say "maybe".. at least I was getting closer?

Because, I hadn't quite let go of my reasons...

It's too expensive to do anything big, I need to save for college! 
I can't leave the kids.. 

My husband will miss me..
It's too much disruption.
Who will let the dogs out 3 times a day? 

and yet the real reasons were:

I was worried I was selfish to want more. 
I was afraid to fail at doing something adventurous.
I was afraid of wasting time and money on something that I said yes to.
Doing something "different" felt too far out of my comfort zone.
Doing something big while also being alone.. how can that be fun? 
What if I disrupt my relationship? 
and then there was this whisper that would say : BUT what if???
What if being selfish is a good thing? 
What if you don't fail? 
What if you have wild success and intense fun at doing something adventurous? 
What if going somewhere or doing something different is exactly what you need? 
What if doing new things enhances your relationship vs. disrupts it? 
What if disruption is exactly what it's all about? 


It seemed to make sense that I would need to look at disruption in a whole new way. Maybe even as a magical ally that could be my ticket into positive change. I mean, lets be honest, what was I really disrupting? 

The status quo.
The routine.
The monotony. 
The same old same old.
The comfort zone. 

Ahhh... there it was.  The curse of comfort.  My comfort zone kept me from wanting to change because deep down, I was scared of the unknown.  I think that the longer I lived inside of my predictable and routine life, the less confident I became about my capacity to grow and shift again. However, I was also noticing that comfort itself had become wildly uncomfortable, and I was restless for more. 

Being content does not evoke change.

Being restless does.

Fast forward and I'm in the habit of continually adding things to my calendar that I look forward to, and I'm pleasantly surprised by the results of saying YES, and finding new things to do that inspire me. It's taken some adjusting for my family, but everyone is the better for it. I find that by taking time for me, everyone wins. 

I've got energy and a sense of purpose.  
I laugh more and think differently.
My relationships are more alive. 
My income has grown. 

Which brings me to this point:

It's important to invest in ourselves in a way that gives us a return on investment.  I remember that one of the first things I said yes to was more expensive than I was used to spending on myself, until I realized that I wasn't spending; I was investing.  By investing in myself, I've been rewarded over and over and I think it's because I actively have more confidence, energy, and inspiration than I did before and so people hire me more often and I'm more clear about good opportunities that come my way.  

I see now that women withhold from themselves all the time. They short change themselves nurturing everyone except themselves.  Remember that tale by Shel Silverstein, The Giving Tree?  

I bet you thought that was a beautiful story. All I know is that she gave and gave and gave that boy everything, and in the end, all she had left was a stump. 

All she had left was a stump. 


In one year, my life has become filled with joy and excitement.  I've done so many things this year that I never would have imagined and it started with that first BIG "YES". 

You know the saying : 

“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” -  Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

This has been my reality. I do believe that when we put our best foot forward and take a risk toward become who we are meant to be,  that we create an energy thats fueled with possibility and where literally anything can happen. 

So, when is the last time you did something for yourself that made you feel alive inside? 

When is the last time you said "YES" to something that will grow you? 

Here's a poem that spoke to me right around my YES time last year: 

You start dying slowly
if you do not travel,
if you do not read,
If you do not listen to the sounds of life,
If you do not appreciate yourself.
You start dying slowly
When you kill your self-esteem;
When you do not let others help you.
You start dying slowly
If you become a slave of your habits,
Walking everyday on the same paths…
If you do not change your routine,
If you do not wear different colours
Or you do not speak to those you don’t know.
You start dying slowly
If you avoid to feel passion
And their turbulent emotions;
Those which make your eyes glisten
And your heart beat fast.
You start dying slowly
If you do not change your life when you are not satisfied with your job, or with your love,
If you do not risk what is safe for the uncertain,
If you do not go after a dream,
If you do not allow yourself,
At least once in your lifetime,
To run away from sensible advice…
Pablo Neruda

If you are not sure where to start; start here: 

Say "YES" to being with a wonderful group of women in Kennebunk Maine at the end of April for a weekend of disruption.  Take time for you by saying "YES" right now, and stop being so damn sensible.  Ask your friends for help with pets or with the children and tell you husband you know that he's wildly capable of handling a weekend without you.  Now whip out that credit card to claim your space. 

It's just that easy.  

Don't Have Dead People's Goals.

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Tough emotions are part of our contract with life.  We don't get to have a rewarding career, a life filled with amazing adventures, or an intimate relationship by racing for the emotional exits. 

Striving for an absence of difficult emotion is to have dead people goals. 

Don't have dead people goals. 

Emotions are the indicator lights of our hearts; they are here to direct us, not to define us.

Emotions reveal the essence of our personal truth and negative or painful emotions are simply an indicator of where our values are misaligned with what is happening.

If we are angry inside, does it mean we are an angry person? No. It's an indicator that we have been living with a situation that is misaligned with how we have been treated, or how we are living.  

If we are sad or in a state of despair, does it mean we are the depression we are feeling? No. Instead, it indicates that we have not yet fully processed something that has had a deep impact on us.

Avoiding emotion isn't going to help us enrich our lives. It's the emotion itself and exploring the emotion that offers rich and fertile ground for a shift, or for new awakenings to grow. 

Discomfort is our price of admission to a meaningful life. 

Speaking of having a meaningful life: please don't delay in registering for our weekend retreat this coming April in Kennebunk Maine. 

Dreams in Queen Anne's Park

On Friday evening a friend of mine asked if I wanted to write a letter as part of an art project that her daughter was doing at college.  For some reason, I dove right into the request to capture the images that started to come into my mind. They were of Queen Anne's Park which was right around the corner of our house in Newport Rhode Island while I was pregnant with my daughter. We lived there until she was four and she is my inspiration for the poem below:

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Dreams in Queen Anne’s Park

Dear Daughter,

I stopped to rest beneath our Sycamore tree.
In the park, near the house, where you were born.
I remember sitting on summer grass at the same place, years back.
While your presence formed. Unaware of how you’d change me.
Your tiny hands would challenge every misconception.
Every constancy I’d ever known, exchanged for love.
The prodigious force that multiplied.
Entwined with you and I inside.
Delivered to each other like unexpected twins.

Each birthday flickered holograms, of candles on your cake.
The holy moments. The only moments.
While you count cartwheels in pink tutus.
Lasso monsters in dress-up shoes.
You keep rainbows in a jar.
And I, captivated by the prisms of your laughter.
Like the ones we hung near windows, by your pillow. In your lemon-yellow room.

Glimpses of far away planets remind me of impermanence.
Memories float like incense and linger in the air.
You are a constellation organized in a fistful of scattered seeds.
The growth patterns imperceptible.
The chances impossible.
You are a wildflower in technicolor.
And fireworks blooming in July.

My mortal hands reveal veins like patterns.
A map of traveled routes to the motherland you made of me.
The fertile land you blessed for me.
With open hands you gestured me.
While beaming your unicorn smile.

My pilgrimage begins at every sacred site of you.
I wonder at the sight of you.
The epicenter of everything that goodness ever made.
Taking particles of you with me.
Life hasn't dreamed the last of me.
I won’t carve the base of our Sycamore tree.
For the imprint of you {LOVE} is in my heart.


(Monica Rodgers Jan 26th, 2018)

The Nassar Abuse Case, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina & The Power of Witness

The Nassar abuse case has struck a chord with us. The courtroom exposure this past week was heartbreaking as over 150+ women read their victim impact statements one by one while the American public watched and listened to each excruciating word.

I have a deep and abiding affection for Judge Aquilina who resided as a powerful witness to the women who came forward and I truly believe that what she did and how she did it will be discussed as a landmark event from this moment on, perhaps forever changing the way we think about helping the victims of trauma heal. 

Witness. It's not a noun, It's a verb. 

It's the action of being totally present to someone else without interrupting, needing to relate, take away their pain, offer advice, or fix them.  It's the action of keeping our mouths shut, ears and hearts open and being there for whatever gets revealed. 

The women who were victimized at the hands of Larry Nassar needed a witness.  They needed to feel seen and heard so that they could start the process of healing. I have no doubt that Judge Aquilina consciously made it her business to use her courtroom as a conduit for healing and I applaud her for it. 

To feel invalidated and invisible is at the very heart of our unresolved suffering as human beings. To offer someone the space to feel seen and known (REVEAL) is to allow them the space to process (HEAL).

What Judge Rosemarie Aquilina did.. 

Was to allow each woman a reclamation. She adjusted her schedule and cleared her docket day after day, even as the number of women to come forward more than doubled. She made time and space and then held that space for each of them while they addressed their abuser and did the work of reclaiming their voices, bodies & dignity.

She made their words a priority without rushing, hushing or rescuing and held space over her domain with reverence and compassion as they each had a turn to relay their experience of anguish, heartbreak and reckoning. You could have heard a pin drop as time and space seemed to vanish and I have no doubt that a multitude of victims at home were having their own version of healing as they watched the proceedings on television. 

People ask:  

"What does holding space for someone mean?" 

"Holding space" is to be aware and intentional about making a moment count while also being fully present to the experience of the moment however terrifying and difficult.  It's intending that the space you physically occupy or reside over in those moments have intention and significance for those who might be doing the work of processing or healing.  It's also knowing that you are connected to the source of that which creates safe space for someone to expose and even release their pain and suffering.  When I see a space- holder, I get chills down my spine because I know the work they do is sacred. 

"..and witnessing.." 

"Witnessing" is when we "be with"  another human being and truly see them while allowing them to have their experience without saving them, fixing them, or running away. What you do when you witness someone in pain is you offer them the gift of your presence.  Many of us falsely believe that this is the time to shift the subject or jump in with our advice. Instead what you might offer is encouragement & validation "I value you, I see you, I hear you, I believe you." or  "you are not alone, you are strong, you are brave, you are beautiful." 

If you feel awkward and inadequate at witnessing someone, know that just saying "thank you for sharing that with me" and sitting in silence with them would be just as powerful. 

I noticed that at the end of each victim statement heard in the courtroom, the Honorable Judge addressed each woman by name and acknowledged her courage and pain. She validated her suffering and her right to her feelings of anger and betrayal by those that failed to listen or act and most important she believed them.

She also called them by a new name: Survivor. 

As more and more women come forward to be truth -tellers, more and more space-holders are showing up to create the safe places for healing and reclamation.  We are blessed to be a witness to these changing times.

Thank you so much Judge Aquilina for modeling what it looks like to be the power of witness.
Thank you to the survivors who showed up as the embodiment of courage to break the cycle of silence and violence. 

Keep it coming ladies. Keep it coming.
We are revealing and healing and creating a new space in the world that can only grow in beauty and strength. 

 “Leave your pain here,” Aquilina said on one occasion, in one of the most powerful instructions ever delivered by a presiding judge. “Go out and do your magnificent things.”

For those of you still keeping your secrets, please know that your time is near and that you are more powerful than you know,  I invite you to read a recently published memoir  Meet Laura Parrott Perry and her new book:  She Wrote it Down : How a Secret Keeper Became a Storyteller.

"We live inside our stories, we make homes of them. When we decide those stories are unspeakable, when we attach shame to those stories, they become secrets and those homes become prisons. You know what the difference between a home and a prison is? It's just the ability to walk outside it to freedom.

A lifelong secret-keeper, Laura Parrott Perry began the process of transforming into a storyteller when the dark secrets she'd been carrying around became too heavy and her life began to collapse under the weight of them.

Sexual abuse, eating disorders, alcoholism, perfectionism... Those secrets were all her story making itself known when she was unwilling to tell it. 

Bit by bit, story by story, the author began to shine a light into all those dark corners and tell the truth. She surrendered to the facts of her life and her past, and in doing so began to write a beautiful new future."

A Pilgrimage to Israel in Mind, Body & Spirit

At Midnight on the 2nd of January of this year,  Austin, my Mother and I boarded a flight to Israel where we would eventually meet our larger group. 

I'd received a call from my Mother 12 Months earlier when she had excitedly shared about an opportunity to go on a pilgrimage to "walk the path of Jesus" and I could tell from her voice that the trip would mean a lot to her.  I think she was totally surprised when I agreed to go and then it was my turn to be surprised when Austin agreed come with us. 

My faith has long been a concern for my Mother and I think she always holds hope that I will one day see the light.  It's hard for her to accept that I'm already here, standing in the light right along with her. I do in fact resonate with faith and spiritual practice,  my issue being I don't feel like I belong in any one place and after years of trying ( believe me, it's not been without tremendous effort and soul searching) that I've arrived at accepting myself for where I am.

This said, I absolutely loved the entire experience of exploring Israel as a welcomed guest with a group of 43 other beautiful souls who practice their faith as Catholics.  I loved the beauty of the daily services, the sermons given by Father Simeon Gallagher (an incredibly fun, tender-hearted and charismatic Capuchin Monk whom I'm endeared to for life) the prayers we said at the beginning of each day and at the end of each day, the churches we visited and the historical places that brought us to the very intersection of history, culture & the origins of the Christian faith; Jesus Christ.

To get a sense of Fr. Gallagher's sense of humor and his powerful style of speaking, watch the clip below.  I love this man so much.

Father Gallagher talks about his Irish upbringing, the value of community  & the family pub growing up.  Uploaded by Capuchin Franciscan Friars on 2015-11-04.

The city of Jerusalem was by far the place I loved most on our journey. Jerusalem holds great significance in a number of religious traditions, including the Abrahamic religions Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, which consider it a holy city. Some of the most sacred places for each of these religions are found in Jerusalem and the one shared between all three is the Temple Mount.

Until I visited this territory, it was always confusing to grasp and make sense of how this land is considered to be holy to all three of these major religions.  The historical significance of this land and really all of Israel and much of the middle east is mind boggling. To know this territory is to know that It has been conquered, destroyed and rebuilt time and again, and every layer of its earth reveals a different piece of the past. 

Over the centuries all three of the Abrahamic religions have considered Jerusalem holy. The Jews because it was their capital before the diaspora and the home of the First and Second Temples; the Christians because it was the place where Jesus was crucified; the Muslims because it is where Mohammed ascended to Heaven. They have all built religious monuments there and the area is teeming with people who travel on Pilgrimage each year to pay homage to the origins of their faith.

To say that I was in people watching heaven would be an understatement and our tour guide, a massive 6' 4" Palestinian Christian named Ibrahim (whom I can not say enough about) was an incredible asset to us. This man's intellect and knowledge simply blew me away.  He was a wealth of information on scripture, ancient history, Jewish, Muslim & Christian religions and of course the current political climate. In addition he was a fun and formidable figure,  able to speak five languages and interact with the various crowds, security detail & navigate the streets of each of the cities & towns we traveled to including Bethlehem, Nazareth, Tiberias, Jerusalem etc. without a hitch.

This past year I've met two beautiful Women who hail from Israel, one of them is from Jordan, and one of them who grew up outside Jerusalem.  They too have encouraged me to continue to explore the Middle East as my affection for the history of what I was experiencing truly touched me at a soul level and the part of me that knows spirit when I feel it was completely alive and deeply connected. It's an incredibly special place and will live in my heart forever along with the people I met as one of my #1 most memorable life experiences.  

I've taken the time to write this post not only to encourage those of you that find the idea of traveling to this area appealing, but also to share with you some of the photographs I was able to capture along the way. I do love taking photos and I hope you enjoy them! Also- I cant say enough about the travel company we booked with; Illume, who offers educational academic and religious tours all over the globe.  We stayed in 4 star hotels, ate great food and traveled on the most impeccably clean tour bus I've ever seen. They are a top notch company and I highly recommend using them. In addition, I just learned that if you have a group of 20 people or more, they will assist at planning any type of tour-trip you can think of for your group and you'll get to travel for free.  In fact, I'm working with them now on designing a trip to Europe for The Revelation Project to celebrate women who changed the world through history ( artists, rulers, writers, poets, saints, sages, and revolutionaries) so stay tuned! 




If You Can Feel It, You Can Heal It.

Sometimes there are no words to describe the beauty and tenderness we bump against as we walk through our lives.  The only thing that can convey such things that I know of are art, photography, poetry & music. 

Yesterday I worked with one of my brothers on something that was weighing heavy for him and that had haunted him for some time.  This emotional wound had left him unable to listen to music or access his creativity. Having recently been certified as a Co-Active life coach, I know better than to work with close friends or family. There are a few people whomever, for which I make an exception, mostly because our relationships have already been designed in that way over the years.  

When my brother and I seek each other out to talk, like- "hey, I really need to talk"  we don't skim the surface.  We usually dive deeply into what's happening in our lives.  We are familiar with therapy, capable of vulnerability with each other and know what "doing the work" is all about. I am blessed to have  family members that can hang with me in places where the emotional abyss might normally send someone running. My brother and I have learned that running never works, even though we still try it from time to time. 

The thing is, all of us have moments when we hit the wall.  When our hurts rise up from our past to lay us out.  Sometimes we need someone to help us out of the abyss, or in this case, walk beside us when it's time to go in.  He knew I had been certified to do this and so we set to work. 

I've learned that If you can feel it, you can heal it.  Just because you've felt your pain, or grieved however,   it doesn't mean it's healed and over. Usually a mortal emotional wound will heal in layers and stages can take a long-ass -time.  Many people will say "Seriously! This again! How many times must I revisit this place. I must be getting nowhere!" Not true.  It's not true that you are revisiting the same exact place, you are actually healing another necessary piece. 

Healing from emotional pain is not a linear experience. We are remarkable beings though and heal on multiple levels at different times- spiritually, physically & mentally.  Even our dreams are working to help us heal or to deepen our understanding of something that occurred in our waking life.  Bad dreams are good news as well, because we are processing something deep, or something that has disturbed us at an unconscious level. 

Pain will not leave the body until it's fully processed. Did you know that?  Emotion is energy in motion and if we stop it from moving through us, by shoving it down or disassociating from it, it gets stuck.  The further and longer we shove it down, the more unnecessary time we will suffer.   I shouldn't say unnecessary, let me instead say that it's true that sometimes it's not safe or the right time to process. For many of us, we don't know how to begin to do the work of healing a past wound. The body holds the wisdom though and will always give us many avenues to process the emotion, sometimes even becoming physically sick to force us into rest, recovery or attention. 

The first thing my brother and I had to do was to slow down his mind from escaping the emotional pain. We are wired for escape. I guided him into his body to feel the emotions that he'd been running from.  Each time he tried to intellectualize his pain, I took him back into his body- back to the scene of the crime where he could feel his pain, his anguish, his anger, his loss.

As he visited each new layer of emotion, I asked him to describe what was there in each of those places inside himself.  Down we went deep into the well of grief where everything feels dark and black.  I kept reminding him that I was there with him and just held space as he processed through it.  I feel like holding space can sound kind of dopey, but I'm not sure how else to describe it, but here's what it's not:  It's not fixing it for him, or making him forget, or telling him to snap out of it, or giving advice. It's about witnessing his pain and just being there, quietly & reverently for as long as that person needs. Is there more to it? Yes, but also no.  Most people have such a hard time being with each others pain without trying to fix it or make it go away.  If you really want to help someone you love, just shut your mouth and open your ears and be there. 


There is this expression I've always loved. "No Mud, No Lotus", meaning that you can not have the beauty of life without the messiness or the "dirt". The genius of this deep place inside ourselves where we tend to bury our pain is that it's fertile ground. As we dig into them and shed light on them, we bloom beautiful things there. We fertilize the soil of our lived experience and our pain is transformed into something else and usually what comes back to the surface is our true appreciation and wonder.  When we have buried pain, we've usually buried other things with the pain like our access to our vitality or enthusiasm,  creativity or inspiration.  When we process our pain in this way,  it's as though we have popped the cork out of the bottle-neck and the frothy bubbly comes streaming up and out teeming us back to life and connecting us back to our essential selves. 

I call this the vortex- where we know that all of life is connected and that somehow we are part of this beautiful existence and intertwined at a cosmic level with the paradox of life, in all of it's complexities. 

Usually when we have processed at this deep level, an exhaustion will follow and the most compassionate thing you can do for yourself at this moment is to sleep, which is yet another, deeply healing event. 

After we were finished,  I told him to wrap himself in a blanket and take himself to bed. 

Later in the evening he sent me this beautiful music. 

And I knew we had done the work.  

Good work my Brother.  You are so Brave. I love you so much. 


Do you have unprocessed pain or trauma that haunts you?  Do you wish you could begin to heal it?  You can.  I'd be honored to walk with you to the places that are causing you pain and show you the way out.  It may sound scary- but I promise it's not nearly as scary as you think.   Feel free to contact me to set up a time to learn more about Co-Active coaching.  If you've never heard of it, I'm happy to tell you more and how it can benefit you at any stage of your life.   XO Monica 

I'd like to shout out a special Thank You to an incredibly talented coach & therapist by the name of Courtnay Maletta who helped me to process an incredibly deep wound through her own practice using techniques that helped me when all else had failed.  I learned so much from this experience and it gave me the courage to continue on my coaching journey. I'll always be deeply grateful. 

Revelation Holiday Gift Guide for Women

The holidays always seem to catch me off guard, but this year I'm totally on my A game.

The most important part of the holidays for me, is gathering with my family.  Usually we have the kids at home (ours is an amicably divorced family) and after early morning gift giving, Dad comes to celebrate and have brunch. My cousin Emma from NYC usually joins us too, and is the perfect guest, always pitching in and helping me get ready with last minute gift wrappings and hanging out with the kids (OKA: Distracting them!) 

When it comes to giving gifts, we tend to give a few physical items like books and clothes, but all of us especially enjoy homemade and "experiential" gifts.  As my kids get older, I've noticed that i've become extremely sentimental. I find myself wanting to create all the memories I can while they are still at home. 

One of the things I love about the holidays is finding completely unique gifts for my girlfriends and family.  There's nothing better than giving a gift that has an impact, or thoughtfully reflects an aspect of your relationship with them. 

I've compiled a list here of some favorites to think about this holiday season including experiences, artwork, music,  jewelry & more. I hope you enjoy! 


Concert or Theatre Tickets : are always a great idea.  We love to dress up and have a night out with our friends, partners, or family. Going out for a meal the same night makes for an incredibly memorable gift that keeps on giving. 

Tickets to see The Vagina Monologues:
It's the 20th Anniversary!  If you've never seen this show, it's incredible and will truly have an impact on how you view female sexuality and gender around the world. 
(If you are in Rhode Island tickets go on sale December 1st for the performance at the Odium East Greenwich. Otherwise, you can get them in many cities in the United States for the month of February.


These days it can be really fun to make a playlist for your lady-friend on Spotify or i-tunes. Unfortunately, there's no longer a feature that allows you to purchase the whole playlist and gift it, but you can always pass it along digitally with a gift card for her to make her purchase selections.

P!NK : Beautiful Trauma - Best Album! Love. 
It's edgy, wise, & poetic.  It will pump you up, and break your heart all at the same time.  It's like tenderizer for the hardened heart. 




Alexa: I know, I cant believe I'm suggesting her but she's quite sophisticated, highly intelligent, a little bit sassy, and incredibly convenient.
I use her to play music & podcasts ( "Alexa, play classical!" , “Alexa, Play ‘This American Life’”) I'm not the greatest with math either ( "Alexa, How many tablespoons in a cup", "Alexa what's 6 X 127?") and I love that she can set a timer for me or the kids, especially to monitor screen time. 


Full Frontal Feminism: A Young Woman's guide to why feminism matters. Although it's great for any age,  I'll be getting a copy for my 15 year old this year. The book covers a range of topics, including pop culture, health, reproductive rights, violence, education, relationships, and more.

Love Warrior : Glennon Melton.  I love this woman so much.  I love her humanity, I love how well she fails. I love that she is the goddess of metaphors, 2nd only to my dear friend Bethany. I love that she is brave and broken and wise and willing.  If you want to give the gift of self- compassion, give this book.  It's just beautiful. $11.64

Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype. This is an oldie, but a goodie and a book every single woman on the planet will love. Amazon $ 13.34

We Should all Be Feminists: by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie who shines a light not only on blatant discrimination, but also the more insidious, institutional behaviors that marginalize women around the world, in order to help readers of all walks of life better understand the often masked realities of sexual politics. 

Finding: The Story of a Young Boy Who Becomes His Adoptive Mothers Greatest Spiritual Teacher;  By TRP's very own Kim Fuller.


Urban Decay Naked Eye Shadow Pallet: I use these shadows constantly both on myself and to shadow TRP REVEAL Portrait participants for the workshop.  They are universally beautiful and work with almost anyone. $75.00 ( There are a variety of sizes and sets and all of them are great so play the field!) 

Yore Skin Starter Kit:
Ok people, I've been using this stuff for years now. Bye bye dry skin.  I use their BALM on everything, and i do mean EVERY THANG.  $25.00

Farmaesthetics Midnight Honey Bath and Beauty Oil: I love this product, so very much.  I use it before or after my bath. It's smells divine and feels so great on my skin;  a total treat! 

Clothing/ Shoes/ Gift Box

Toms Slip-on Shoes: These are arguably one of the most comfortable pairs of shoes I've ever owned.  I love that for each pair purchased, a pair goes to any one of 90 giving partners in over 70 countries in the world. I wear them for just about any occasion and especially around the house because they are soft, comfortable, and easy to slip-on. I've washed mine in the washing machine multiple times and they hold up beautifully and just seem to gain in comfort.  Amazon $ 21. 16


Nevertheless She Persisted Black Slouchy Sweatshirt: Sevenly is one of my favorite "cause companies". Every time you purchase one of their products, they donate 7% of your purchase to the cause it supports.  This sweatshirt will raise money for the Athena International Fund which promotes a balance of leadership worldwide. Sevenly $ 51.00

Causebox: A seasonal delivery of 6-8 hand-curated products for women. Every product has a story and makes the world better. You can purchase a 1 X box, or subscribe for the year at $49.95 per quarter ( 4 X per year). My husband has done this for me for 2 years in a row and I have just loved being introduced to fair trade jewelry, leather-goods, beauty products, and housewares that tell a story whose purchase support a number of amazing causes. 

Strong As a Mother Tank: Who wouldn't want to wear this for a workout. Yeah! $23.00



Empower & Hydrate with an IAMTRA Water Bottle.  Drink in your positive energy and remind yourself each day that you are a range of beautiful possibilies. Choose the trio of words that best represents your current mantras, and repeat your intentions with each sip as you hydrate throughout the day. 26 oz stainless steel bottles with BPA-free plastic tops. Hand washing suggested. $20.00

Positive, Open, Limitless
Joyous, Balanced, Healthy
Fearless, Focused, Ready

IAMTRA has a variety of totally unique products like their POWerful Women pins, so browse people, browse! 


Nasty Woman Coffee Mug: Need I say more? Amazon $ 15.95


Feminist Accessory Bag: Gotta Love Etsy.  $ 17. 66


We the People Public Poster: Set of 3. We The People are Greater (Than Fear, Defend, Protect.)  Great home decor printed on on fine paper.  Etsy $ 33.87


Affirmation Deck: Positive Affirmations- Just pick one! Etsy: $25.00

Sister Morse Code Bracelet: Ok- these are too cute not to have one for our friends and sisters. Love it!  Etsy $ 12.00 - $ 32.00



Made by my talented cousin Rebecca Mir Grady. Lightly hammered 4mm cuff bangle in Sterling Silver. Diameter is 2.5". Brushed finish. Handmade in Chicago. Bracelets ship with a muslin jewelry bag and jewelry box.
Rebecca Mir Grady $ 145.00


Wild Rose Lidded Jar: 
This is just beautiful. Form meets function with this beautiful lidded ceramic made by Red Chair Studios.  I'd keep treasures or jewels in it for sure. Ok, maybe sugar. Maybe tea. Maybe LOVE. $85.00 




I die over this woman's artwork.  It's true,  a hundred times, I've died. The talent just kills me. So much. GollyBard art, watercolor paintings, prints by Holly Ward Bimba
$30.00 ( Feathers)  $625 (Birds) but there are over 500+ prints to choose from in a variety of sizes! 


Revealing Worthwhile Reads & Things to Do: Weekly Roundup

I'm really enjoying the activated feminine voice rising into & over the drudgery of the same old - same old. 
I'm seeing women everywhere, having conversations that matter and using their voices to break the silence. The reoccurring theme's this week : Self-care & self-worth and the intersection of revealing & healing. 

The Unforgiving Minute : By Laurie Penny.

Men, get ready to be uncomfortable for a while. While forgiveness may come one day, it won’t be soon.

Sex, however, is not the problem. Sexism is the problem, as is the fact that a great many men seem unable to tell the difference. It is maddening, the way those of us who complain about abuse are accused of trying to shut down sex and sexuality, as if we’d ever been allowed to be active sexual participants, as if abuse and the fear of abuse hadn’t made pleasurable sex all but impossible for so many of us.


Allowing #MeToo to go Viral is the Biggest Mistake the Establishment Ever Made: By Caitlin Johnstone.

Human civilization is made of rape. For millennia, all over the world, women have been commodified and kept as property for the purpose of receiving male reproductive fluids and raising their progeny, regardless of our will. During this time we were kept at home while men invented religion, money, economics, war, government, hierarchy, class, culture, rules, laws and traditions, including the laws of the marital bed. Civilization has been arranged so that each man receives a woman to own, with whom he may have sex whenever he wishes, between building, fighting, destroying and conquering in accordance with the will of whatever ruler happened to be running the show at the time.


This is What Self-Care Really Means: Because it's not all Salt Baths and Chocolate Cake. 

True self-care is not salt baths and chocolate cake, it is making the choice to not build a life you don’t need to regularly escape from.
And that often takes doing the thing you least want to do.


Self-Care: It Begins with You Online Workshop: Check out Beth McKay's Zoom Workshop & Reveal:

  • A deep sense of what self care means to you
  • A self care practice
  • A sacred connection with like minded women
  • Knowing when you’re separated from yourself and how to recover
  • Being able to distinguish the difference between self care & self indulgence
  • Learning to recognize those incessant voices and how to change the internal conversation




Self-Care Workshop 

With Beth McKay