Free to FLOW!

Several years before I ended my corporate career, I was in a meeting listening to our department VP talk about the book, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. Flow is “a state of consciousness that makes an experience genuinely satisfying…people experience deep enjoyment, creativity, and a total involvement with life.” I’m sure most of you have heard the expression (especially from athletes), “I’m in the zone.” This is flow. My VP was connecting it to the Human Resources Dept. creating a higher level of work engagement for our employees. I connected to NOT FEELING IT!

And I actually had felt it during my tenure there, particularly in my early HR years. Coming to Human Resources felt like I’d finally found my work home. I now know that in each of the positions I held(recruiter, soft skills trainer, management development manager), I was gathering information and honing my skill level in what would fully and ultimately represent flow for me: coaching clients on my terms. Remember: Nothing’s wasted!

Serving people through my gift of ‘free-your-mind/get your life’ coaching…YES. Corporate strategy and processes…NO!

Flow is in my head because I experience it often now, working with clients. And I was TOTALLY in my Flow Zone during my retreat(finding creative ways to provide a wonderful coaching experience is a flow requirement for me). I’m doing the current Oprah/Deepak meditation series, Hope In Uncertain Times and in Day 8, Oprah mentions flow:

“I believe hope flourishes when you are In. The. Flow. I remember a photo I pulled from O Magazine of a woman gliding through water. It was such a striking image of freedom and possibility, I put it on my vision board. Some time later after a swimming lesson, I passed by my vision board and had an AHA moment. I’d become that woman gliding through the water. For years, I’d been a challenged swimmer, afraid of the water…fighting it. I believe that all I needed to learn was to move with the flowwww…literally. This is one of the great metaphors of life.

Move with the flow. Don’t fight the current. RESIST NOTHING. Let life carry you. Don’t try to carry it.

Deepak tells us, if you get this idea…that this moment, is the only moment you have…then you live in the present and you MOVE WITH THE FLOW of that. The point of arrival is NOW. So many of us look to the future for a moment of happiness or contentment. I will be happy when… But when we get there, we don’t recognize it because we are not present for IT. And That’s how many people lose hope. They miss the moment!”

Are you in your flow? Or are you in a trickle? A drought? Are you paying attention to what’s tickling OR prickling your consciousness? Are you swimming or drowning? I fought the messages for a long time because they didn’t seem ‘right’. I prayed, begged, and pleaded with God to let me be happy on the traditional track to retirement. Clearly, he wasn’t hearing THAT! Ohhhh the misery that only got worse. Thankfully, though, even in the midst of what had become work hell, I was grateful and remained enough ‘in the moment’ to not miss the joys of my very blessed life. I didn’t lose all hope.

I came to the realization, that the company wasn’t my issue. The issue was my ignoring that a life chapter had ended. I had received what I came to learn and it was time to move on. Time to create my new Flow. So I did. Helping you find YOUR Flow is MY Flow!

If work is NOT your happy place, then you’ll want to check out my upcoming online course, How To Get The Work You Love.

It’s a self-study that shows you how to:

  • determine what work represents for you: Your passion and contribution in the world OR a great income and flexibility to live your passion outside of work.
  • create an action plan(based on your response to above) that gets you the work-life you crave
  • FLOW!!!

Don’t want to wait? Contact me now…

P.S. There are still a few spots left for Dancing in the Dark + Coaching. You really don’t want to miss this!



BARE-ing the Before & After

Some of the most popular stories are makeover stories, right?? The miserable or plain face ‘before’ followed by the dramatically beautiful BIG reveal of the ‘after’…after the weight loss…after the cosmetics. We see this in countless magazine articles, news segment pieces, and big loser type shows. And we eat it up because ‘the visual’ is so appealing and aspirational!

What I love about BARE is that The BEFORE is a head/heart focus. It’s about changing AND LOVING  how you see yourself…RIGHT NOW. It’s about ending the hiding and owning the BEAUTY that is YOU…RIGHT NOW. Wearing the cute clothes NOW. Rockin’ that new hairstyle NOW. Doing the pouty red lipstick NOW. Going to the fancy event NOW. Putting on the swimsuit NOW.

WhatEVER you’ve been delaying or waiting to do…Stop It.

I took the pics in this post because business coach and BARE creator, Susan Hyatt, put out a request for before and after pics. She normally doesn’t do this and asked because she’s written a wonderful book about BARE and a potential publisher wants visuals. She’s determined to change this old mindset and I have no doubt this book is going to Absolutely move that broken needle! It got me thinking how much my self-view has changed in the past several months since I’ve been coaching myself and clients on BARE.

Some of you will think: What is she talking about? She doesn’t have a weight issue. Others will think: She could drop a few pounds. Matters not. The question isn’t, Is you is or is you ain’t fat? I have clients at varying points on the weight continuum who call themselves fat, overweight, or feel unhealthy regardless of the visual.

The question is, Do you SEE yourself with love? That’s the first step towards treating yourself with love which leads to your body letting you know what feels like love and showing up for you in the way it was meant to: healthy and supportive in ALL the dreams you want to slay! BARE is not about delusion. It’s about accepting what IS and lovingly moving yourself to where you want to be. Women do lose weight(including moi)…lots of it. Physical AND mental and emotional.

I love dresses, but during the past several years I’ve worn them long or with leggings. This dress isn’t new, but the new thang is that I wore it without self-consciousness. It’s my ‘AFTER’. You can’t see it, but I KNOW it!

Ready to Free Your Mind AND your Body Drama?? Ask me about BARE.

P.S. Only 3 spots left for Dancing in the Dark!!


Who’s Life Are You Living?

I was a mess in my late teens/early twenties. Tagged ‘The Smart One’, I failed to live up to my potential and went home in shame from college on academic probation. I got a job at a grocery store(being a sofa slug was NOT an option with my parents) and tried to figure out my life. My mom sent me to a psychologist and the only thing I remember about that experience is his asking me what I wanted to do and my responding that I wanted a career in business.

I have no idea why I said that because most of my life my goal was to be a psychologist and my back-up options were librarian and proofreader. I probably believed that college failure meant those early aspirations were off the table and I just needed to work. He expressed doubt that I really meant that and I assured him I did.


Fast forward…Having escaped parental home/store clerk purgatory, I did end up in a corporate career and a pretty successful one at that! I completed my degree and moved around the company in several positions.

Eazy Peazy, right? Ummm, No! My mom used to say, “You always have to take the hard path.”

I completed my degree while I was in my company’s management training program, which included a 70 mile commute twice a week. After a few years in management, I decided it wasn’t for me(frequent crying was a sign!) and took the unprecedented risk of opting out to a non-management position. Ambition wasn’t a huge driver for me, but burning bridges was something to be avoided. Thankfully, my job transition was smooth and several years later, I made another internal move to an HR recruiter position and that’s when EVERYTHING changed! Cue the opera singer: I put a name to my avocational passion(coaching) and it felt like I’d finally found my work home.

And for awhile, I had.

Through four different HR positions including returning to management to run the corporate management training and softskill development programs, I honed my skill in and love for helping people get needed clarity and work success. And I also learned that psychologist was half right. I don’t love business in the general sense, but I ABSOLUTELY LOVE business on MY terms! When the misery returned and I knew there was nowhere else for me to move but out, I left. Some tough lessons, but in the words of the Wise and Wonderful Maya Angelou, I “wouldn’t take nothing for my journey now.”

The Group………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..The ‘Office’

The Paint Your Own Reality Retreat married everything I enjoy: coaching fabulous, motivated women in a beautiful location to clear their junk and drop the weight of what’s keeping them from Living Free! PYOR was inspired by the artist Frida Kahlo’s commitment to living life on her own terms…creatively and passionately…in spite of tremendous daily pain(physical and emotional).

The gleam you see in my eyes is my basking in the Blessing of Arrival. Every experience(good and bad), Every mistake, Every step forward and two back…ALL brought me to exactly where I’m supposed to be, doing exactly what I’m meant to do. Nothing wasted! And that gleam is there even though I didn’t make a penny (THAT won’t happen again! LOL), but the lessons learned re logistics and purpose are invaluable.

And the biggest lesson: Live. Your. Life.

Not what you ought to do…but what you’re meant to do.

Not what makes sense according to ‘they’…but according to YOU.

If you’re not ready to leap, take notes on what’s not working, what does excite you and Make A Plan.

There’s a Coach for that! Do it NOW.

C.René Washington

P.S. Dancing In The Dark + Coaching is 60% sold! She who hesitates will miss out. You’ll be surprised at what you ‘see’ in the dark! Get in on the fun AND the enlightenment. Click here for full details and purchase,