This website is about listening to and acting on the voice inside. That thing that’s sometimes referred to as following your heart or living your most authentic life. More specifically this site is focused on the nitty-gritty, sometimes fleeting, but other times agonizingly slow moments between having an impulse or hunch to follow your heart and the actual doing of it, or not.
And because this doesn’t just happen once in a person’s lifetime, but many thousands of times. And not just at the beginning and end of an adventure, passion project, or quest, but countless times along the way, all posts, resources and interviews are organized into three areas.
The stage of Venturing Forth is full of firsts, new territory, struggles with uncertainty and questions about when to start, what to focus on and why me? For inspiration, there are posts about starting and failing, learning to trust yourself versus knowing when to question yourself. For resources, there is a free 1-hour video course on how to trust your instinct despite uncertainty.
The stage of Persevering is characterized by trials and errors which includes learning, adapting and trying again. Struggles are less about new territory and more about applying what one's learned and experienced in innovative and creative ways. There's also an emphasis on communication in this stage. Typical questions are who can support me (who can I trust), why does this matter in the long run/what’s my long-term goal and how can I keep going? Inspirational posts focus on stories of resilience, improvisation and navigating difficult conversations.
The stage of Returning Anew is more about integration of what is known and understood than it is about acquiring new skills. Because of this, it’s represents both familiar and new territory. Likewise, struggles triggered by uncertainty as much as certainty. Questions, therefore, are more nuanced than the first two stages and include questions like, What am I capable of that is less about doing and more about being? What is required of me right now? How can I serve? Inspirational posts are about finishing a project/quest in the best way possible, transforming painful endings, giving back.
For those of you familiar with the late Joseph Campbell, the prolific mythologist who popularized the idea of The Hero’s Journey through books and interviews, you may detect a parallel. And there is one. It’s that following your heart, or living your hero's journey as Campbell described it is not a one-time deal. It’s a way to live your life, or as Campbell said:
“…a good life is one hero journey after another. Over and over again, you are called to the realm of adventure, you are called to new horizons. Each time, there is the same problem: do I dare? And then if you do dare, the dangers are there, and the help also, and the fulfillment or the fiasco.”
Joseph Campbell, Pathways to Bliss (pg. 133)
I agree with Campbell. At the same time, it can tough to follow the call, whether once or over a lifetime. This may explain why Henry Thoreau, Naturalist and Philosopher said that “The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation” (Economy, Walden).
Why did Thoreau say this? What did he know that we don’t? I suspect it’s got something to do with not living one’s truth, but instead, living the life others expect of him. If this sounds extreme, consider the fact that the single most common regret of the dying, according to Bronnie Ware in her book, The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, is the regret of living life according to others expectations instead of a life according to one’s truth.
It doesn’t have to be this way. It is never too late (or too soon) to live your truth and follow your heart.
It’s my mission to help you be able to do this in any way that I can.
Why conscientious rebel and not hero?
Well, aside from the fact that the word hero implies a guy with a cape and shield, neither of which have anything to do with being a real hero, it seems important to find a word that captures the challenge of being able to follow one’s heart. And whether that means to act (or in some cases, to not act) on that voice inside – an active energy is needed to say no to status quo and yes to intentional action. And the word for this is rebellion.
But while rebellion is essential because it gets the wheels for change in motion, rebellion by itself is not enough. Something more is needed.
Conscientiousness. With conscientiousness, rebel energy can more effectively and wholeheartedly navigate the change that it stirs up. As contrary as they seem, both need each other and are stronger in the long term as a result.
I’m Robin. I love to write, think, dance and create. But mostly, I love to do things that help people follow their hearts. I’ve been trying to do it myself my entire life and it’s not the easy path, usually because it requires going against the status quo – whether it’s the status quo of the people around you, or society, or of oneself. That said, there’s no question that the times I’ve been able to do it, it’s been worth it. Very worth it.
So, what gives me the chops to be able to help you, fellow seeker, to follow your heart – especially in light of the fact that I’ve failed as much as I’ve succeeded.
Here’s my deal.
My earliest memory of following my heart was when I was 7. I boarded a plane by myself to visit my grandparent’s in England. What made it memorable was that I had to overcome fear to be able to do it. Actually, the phrase overcome fear is a misnomer – at that young age, I doubt I had the emotional where with all to intentionally overcome anything. But there was something else more honest, more possible, than overcoming, and it was that I remember being afraid but acting anyway.
After England I was a different little girl. Not on the outside, nor much on the inside - I still felt fear at school, on the playground…etc. But this discovery of being able to be afraid but act anyway, was totally new.
I didn’t have the words formed at the time, but looking back I can see that this was the beginning of two lifelong questions:
How to live your truth?
How to stay human when it’s difficult to do so?
Since then the questions have flourished - I live with them daily! And I’ve had 100’s (probably more since I’m now in my 50’s!) of experiences to draw from that have required acting on a wish/hunch despite fear and insecurity, on the one hand; and learning to listen to my inner truth, on the other. These experiences have been at home and abroad, in all kinds of different jobs and roles, and between friends, enemies, bosses, peers, family and strangers.
I’ve deconstructed and analyzed the failures and successes, while at the same time studying the lives of humanitarians, great thinkers, inventors, noble leaders and master artists from around the world. I’ve earned degrees in physiology and kinesiology (Human Movement studies) as well as psychology, somatics, education and creativity research (Dance/Movement therapy). In addition to this, I’ve gained deep knowledge in leadership, performance improvement, conflict resolution and communication in my roles as coach, mentor coordinator and consultant.
Studying these two questions from so many different areas of expertise and not just from academic or professional points-of-view, but from the point-of-view of 1st person lived experience. It's the latter that's given me the greatest insight and given me a wholehearted understanding of the area of human experience and behavior that lies between intention and action. Or described another way, the part of us that is able to do what we intend to do. (I'll write more about the profound meaning behind able soon!)
All this to say that I believe when we live our truth that it’s not only good for us, it’s good for those around us and for the world. In other words, the two questions are two sides of a coin.
It’s my sincere wish that the stories and resources shared are a help to you wherever you might be in your hero’s journey.
For more about my credentials and background, go here.