Day 51 of 100 days of Blogging
I first heard, really heard those words at an Evolutionary Women Retreat in Santa Barbara, California in December 2005. My husband had died five months earlier. I was cracked open and I was grieving. I flew across the country because I had a strong desire to become an Evolutionary Woman. I wanted to know how to do it.
My first question: How do I become an Evolutionary Woman?
At the retreat, I discovered that I was an Evolutionary Woman. I had always been an Evolutionary Woman and now it was time to come out of the closet and share that part of myself with others.
Three years later, I mentored 44 women to write a story in Conscious Choices: An Evolutionary Woman’s Guide to Life, a project that came out of another Evolutionary Women Retreat. Another part of me was waking up. The lifetime experiences and commitment to journal writing had been laying a foundation for this next part of my life; A writer who also supported the voices of women.
In 2011, two years after Conscious Choices was released, I heard the words Heal My Voice which began a deep journey of forming the non-profit organization, Heal My Voice, and using my lifetime experiences to create a space for women around the world to write a personal, vulnerable story to heal, reclaim personal power and their inner authority, step into greater leadership in their families, communities and the world.
After the Ninth Heal My Voice Book was published in June 2015 and after four years of 24/7 focused attention on women’s stories, devotion to coaching, editing and supporting their voices, I took a pause. This first wave felt complete. It felt like we had reached a completion and it was a moment of being at the top of the mountain and ready for the tipping point. Over 200 stories. Women sharing a personal journey of their own healing and sharing hope with others.
Women becoming more visible in the world.
I took the pause because I was exhausted and I wasn’t sure about the next step. I asked myself, “What will be the step that tips the scales for women?” For 12 weeks, I spent time feeling, writing, listening and reading. I sat in the discomfort of not knowing and I observed resources, tools and conversations that crossed my path. One of the books I read again was The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Difference by Malcolm Gladwell.
Tipping Point: the point at which a series of small changes or incidents becomes significant enough to cause a larger, more important change.
In the ten years since my husband died, women ARE more visible. The work we have been doing behind the scenes is shared on social media, in blogs and in workshops. Writing our stories one word at a time, one conversation at a time we have become more visible to each other.
Parenting my children, something I devoted thirty years to is now complete. My three daughters are adults in the world. Mary as a co-founder of Dramatic Adventure Theatre traveling with students to Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Ecuador, Slovakia for cross cultural exchange, acting and writing plays. Elizabeth teaching English in the Baltimore City School System with special needs high school students. Hannah, a President Ambassador at Santa Monica College and now attending UCLA with a desire to work in the field of Communications. All three girls grown into powerful women with their own voices.
I turn my attention back to myself, to Heal My Voice and to women. Why women? Because I want women to have a place at the table and to walk side by side with men. Interconnectedness and individuation.
In writing 100 blogposts in 100 days I am exploring questions and ideas.
Two areas of questions I have been pondering.
1. What conversation(s) are women and men most interested in exploring right now? Which of my life experiences can support the Good in the world?
2. How can we expand the visibility of the stories by the Heal My Voice authors? How can we spread the words of a woman’s journey in a way that reaches more women and men and impacts the tipping point for healing, hope and leadership on the planet? How can we inspire others to write their stories and uplift the world?
I would love to hear your comments. What conversations do you want to have? What support do you need? What do you feel is the tipping point needed to uplift the planet?
Andrea Hylen believes in the power of our voice to usher in a new world. She is the founder of Heal My Voice, an organization that inspires women and men to heal a story, reclaim personal power and step into greater leadership. Andrea discovered her unique gifts while parenting three daughters and learning to live life fully after the deaths of her brother, son and husband. In addition to serving as Heal My Voice’s Executive Director, Andrea is a Mentorship Coach supporting the voices of women and men.
She is following her intuition as she collaborates with women and men in organizations and travels around the world speaking, teaching and leading workshops. Her passion is authentically living life and supporting others in doing the same. To connect with Andrea and learn about current projects go to: www.andreahylen.com and www.healmyvoice.org.