EXPERIMENT // We Are Empowerment | Knoxville, TN
WE ARE EMPOWERMENT
The "We Are Empowerment Experiment", Hosted by Shii Eyes Photography and Aloha Studios was coordinated by myself, and my amazing assistant, Taylor, and took place yesterday in the early afternoon, as the sun was at its highest point in the bright blue East Tennessee sky!
We brought an AMAZING and DIVERSE group of women together to celebrate one thing- WOMEN. Here is how it happened...
I have had a calling. A calling that I could not ignore. Which is to reach out, to do something better, greater, a higher kind of mission. I want to give back, give my all, give EVERYTHING away. I want to give love, kindness, art, inspiration, positivity, creativity, success, happiness, growth and MORE. This has been stewing for months, and I haven't been exactly sure how to handle it, or what direction to take. I am still not entirely sure what my great mission is yet, but with all the trials I have recently overcame, I am confident whatever it is- IS GOING TO BE BRILLIANT!!
So here is my first step. I took a day, a day I hardly take to spend with my own ohana, that I hardly take away from work, with money I could have used to repair my car that has just broken down and I desperately need to fix- and I did this. Because these women, and women everywhere NEEDED this. A detox from the ego. A detox from the toxic people we have had in our lives or currently have in our lives. A detox from our negative self image. A detox from hate and judgement. A detox from the internet.
We were actually present. We began by standing in a great circle and taking three large breaths together. We all come from different walks of life, on entirely different journeys, at all different places on our path... and yet these three breaths bring us together. We breath again.
Then, we reach together high into the air and stretch out as loooong as we can, and we bend to our toes to get a great stretch. We repeat. We are one. We can begin.
This was such a learning experience for me, and a step outside of my comfort zone as much as anyone else. This collection of woman were so dynamic and inspiring, and it was so interesting to see simply who attended. I can honestly say- I probably would NOT have attended an event in which I knew no one, had never been to location, with very vague details. BUT THEY CAME!
That was step one. Step two was reaching into this group of women and meeting someone you have not before. Starting the compassion process, and opening your heart up to these women as individuals and not as their outward appearance. Then the real EMPOWERMENT begins...
Taylor and I have spent the past ENTIRE WEEK making gifts for these women. Hand made shirt for each and every person, customized to their favorite colors. Gifs, inspirations, uplifting quotes, and more were carefully packaged with love and distributed to each of these beautiful women, and as we hand them their gift- they have to say a positive affirmation. They said things like: "I am creative.", "I am love.", "I am compassionate." and "I have maintained most of my childlike wonder."
Then they excitedly open their gift, and we move right into the main excersize:
Each of you will be passed a chalk board- ON ONE SIDE- you will write a worry, insecurity, fear or concern. It can be something that someone said to you, was said to you on the internet, or something you think of yourself. ON THE OTHER SIDE- you will write a victory, something you are confident about, something wonderful and positive about yourself regardless of your situation.
AND WHILE you sit in front of us, and confront your vulnerabilites, we will pass around your "Beautiful Bag of Compliments" and each place a compliment for you inside. Something for you to take home, and enjoy later.
AND THIS is what happened....
THIS DAY WAS AMAZING
AND sitting in the "HOT SEAT" is harder than you can absolutely imagine. I was so interesting to see women's reactions to each others change as the got up to confront their demons. It was impossible to NOT open your heart up in this moment. I feel a connectedness to these women that is unexplainable, as they bared their very souls, our first time around. Not just to me, but to everyone there- and it was a comfortable place to lay those demons to rest.
And I say "First time around" because there will be MANY more of these to come in the future!
If you missed this, stay tuned for the next one. YOU DON'T WANT TO MISS IT!
I can honestly say- after confronting my insecurity- I am free.