I don’t know what it is about Huntington Beach, but something about it is super grounding for me.  There’s obviously a pretty view, but it’s more than that. Maybe it’s because my family has come here every year since my husband and I have been married. Regardless of the reason, whenever I am in Huntington Beach, California, I find myself in a state of deep self-reflection. 

It’s funny because I didn’t used to like California that much at all–there are so many beaches and people wearing bathing suits! I never really felt like I fit in because I felt uncomfortable sporting the beach attire. I couldn’t relax long enough to think about anything other than how much I couldn’t wait to leave. So in recent years, it’s been fun for me to feel the difference as I’ve grown into accepting who I am and making friends with myself and my body

During my most recent trip to Huntington Beach, I reflected on all the changes I’ve experienced lately– or growth spurts, if you will.  You might remember, as I do, having growth spurts as a child and growing pains along with them. Well, growing pains also happen in emotional growth.

As I’ve been getting really clear on what it is that I’m passionate about, I’ve also gotten clear on what my message or calling is. It feels scary to enter into this new level, truly being intentional and actually declaring what it is that I want to do. I’ve had great experiences and breakthroughs, and at the same time, there have been times that have triggered my fear response system quite intensely. One moment, I’ll be feeling really good, and then something simple will happen that will cause me to crash and burn–like all the new and not-yet-strong neural pathways break down for a moment, letting my old beliefs force their way through.

This happened just recently, which brings me to my point today.

First of all, I must say that I’m happy to be able to recognize that it’s normal to have this kind of thing happen.  Pain is part of progress–in both physical and emotional growth. The pain I experience as I lean into the fear helps me to make the necessary adjustments in my attitudes and beliefs that will put me on the right track. 

One thing I do when I’m experiencing the pain of growth is what I like to call a VOICE check, or Vocalise. If you have ever taken voice lessons, you are familiar with vocal exercises called vocalises that strengthen your voice and help it be clear and ready to sing. In my VOICE check or Vocalise, I do a quick run-through of the Five Steps to Finding Your VOICE:

V- Value: How do I feel about myself right now? Do I remember what value I uniquely bring to humanity? Am I having any thoughts that might be off or might be back to my old limiting beliefs?

O- Openness: Am I open? Is my body open? Is my mind open? Am I open to following the advice of a coach or someone I look up to?

I- Intentional Action: What is my intention? Am I willing to do what it takes, even if it’s outside of my comfort zone? 

C- Clearing:  Is my mind clear? Is my emotional space clear? Is my physical space free from clutter?

E- Expression:  Am I behaving as or BEING the person that I know I really am?

Try it!  Doing a regular VOICE check can help keep you on track to connecting to – and becoming – your true self! 

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