My last blog was all about finding my way to following my Heart Map in forging and making new personal path decisions. Tuning into that heart space allowed me to find clarity and direction for my next chapter. Little did I know that the weeks following would be one of the most challenging periods in my life.

Knowing that I needed to make some changes that would allow my being aligned with purpose, joy, and peace, I decided to leave the area I’ve lived for the last 34 years and be in a place with sunshine and warmth Sunshine and warmth not as a small slice of time each year, but rather, a consistent presence year-round. This decision came in constant reflection over the weeks of summer as it waned into fall. I observed how I felt in mind, body, and spirit in my environment. When in cold, dark, damp circumstances, I would find my energy and spirit depleted to such levels where it was debilitating. I would expend so much energy trying to regain that balance that it exhausted me.

Change letter dice

This Heart Map called to me to find a place where my soul can sing again. Where my body can feel settled. Where my mind can be clear to create. Tuning in and exploring where this would be, I found myself centered on southern Arizona. I really let my Heart Map guide me in this, rather than letting my head and logic overrule. How did I feel when I thought about making this move? Could I envision myself there? Was I looking at this with desire and anticipation or with fear and trepidation? In the end, desire and anticipation won out.


So began the process of transition. Unbeknownst to me, I had to learn that this process would take an incredible amount of trust. An incredible amount of faith and vulnerability. Allowing others to hold me up when I felt I couldn’t continue on this path. Letting them in when I started to question my decision because the process wasn’t unfolding with ease and was fraught with so many unknowns. Change, even when ultimately for the best, is extraordinarily stressful. And when you experience aspects of it that are out of your control, that stress and anxiety skyrockets.


But the need to be settled in that sunshine and warmth is pushing me to make this transition now. Even at a time when there is so much unrest on all levels – globally, locally, and even individually – the push has been a drumbeat in my head. I had to heed the call for resolution for settling where I absolutely must be. This became a test of resilience like no other I have been through. Even moving across the country from Michigan to Washington at the age of 23 held no candle to what I have been going through this time around.

Girl in Hoodie

By choice, I chose to leave a job of 12 plus years, start a new job remotely, and sell and buy a home (also remotely) all at the same time. The challenges have been many, and even to the point where my body shut down and forced me to rest for several days amidst timelines and developments that had no flexibility. This was forcing me to learn how to BE at times when I believed I had to DO. My body literally shut down and said NO. I had to listen. I had to trust. And I had to heal if I expected to realize my dream and destiny of relocating. I listened. I rested. And continue to navigate doing so when I sense I might be heading in that direction again. I have learned that it is okay to say to others that I need to rest and balance in order to avoid a relapse. And I can’t concern myself with what others think when I exercise this need. I have to take care of me if I’m going to be able to do what I’m supposed to do in this life.


I notice that when I heed my Heart Map, that inner voice, it allows others to see that it’s okay for them to do the same. Consider if we all were to listen to the warnings that come from our mind, body, and spirit when we are heading into imbalance just how much healthier we’d all be. If we were to stop trying to measure up, perform, and meet expectations of others when it goes contrary to our own individual Heart Map. Think about the harmony in yourself and how that permeates to the harmony of the collective. When we each are in balance and at peace, that creates a connected unity in all of us.


If nothing else, all of the turmoil and upheaval in this last year have indicated to me that we are a humanity in transition. We MUST listen to our Self as well as to others. We must do so with understanding and open hearts. We must come to accept that while we may all harbor differences, in order for this planet and its creatures to survive, we have to find a common ground.

In solution-focused based coaching/therapy, we traditionally start a session by asking, “what are you best hopes from our talking together today?” This question has become a mantra for me as I consider divisiveness, anger, disharmony, violence that have become the focus our world, our local communities, and even within our individual selves. When I reflect on this question, 

with all your heart

I discover that my best hopes are to be in a place where I can not only survive but thrive. To be a part of a local community that looks for solutions in unity versus ways to continue to stand ground in division just for the sake of “being right”. To be a part of a world that wants the commonality of decency, compassion, and lives without struggle for just basic, every-day needs. 

My personal transition to southern Arizona is not done yet, but it is a step in the right direction to realize my personal best hope. My Heart Map tells me this, so I trust it. Once settled in a land where the medicine of the sun can heal my soul, then I can focus on the other best hopes for my community and my world.


UPDATE: I wrote these words in the beginning of November just as pieces were coming together for the sale of my Washington home and purchase of my Arizona home. Today is New Year’s Day, and I’m now settled in my new community. I can tell you that trusting my Heart Map, inner voice to follow this path has proven to be exactly what my soul needed. My best hopes of sunshine, warmth, and building of a new community have started to coalesce. I look forward to continuing this journey with renewed optimism for not only myself, but our world as a whole. May you all find peace, harmony, and unity in your Self. In your Community. And in our World as a whole.