“The two most important days in your life are the day you were born and the day you find out why.”
— Mark Twain
January 19, 2015.
That’s my day. It’s etched into my memory for eternity. There’s a clear division between how I saw my life before that day and how I saw it after that day.
Let me catch you up to speed with what was going on in my life around that time.
I had sold my shares and left my job—as co-owner of a PR agency—just a year earlier. I had been offered a book deal. I had started a wellness coaching and herbalism practice that I’d been running for about a year. I had written a few viral articles about my life.
From the outside, I seemed like a massive success. I had busted my butt, hustled and grinded, put myself in front of every major opportunity I could.
Inside, I was a mess. Not one of these opportunities made me feel any more worth or happiness.
In fact, I started hating wellness coaching and even writing. I was tired of all of it. I had no idea what my purpose was or what I wanted to do with my life.
In all honesty, I was hardly making any money at all. And I felt incredible shame because so many people thought I was successful, when actually I was on the verge of quitting it all and going back to PR with my tail between my legs.
I didn’t have many options left. I watched as my bank account dwindled. And I was still no closer to knowing what I wanted to do with my life. I felt like a big failure.
So I got the idea to create a blogging course. I was offered a book deal from my blog within three months of starting my business, so maybe I could teach other people how to do that.
This was it. My saving grace. I put everything into it. I spent thousands and thousands on a design team and fancy filming technology. I got a business partner. I spent countless hours on this project.
I had nothing left. But I had dreams about how much money this would make me. And finally I’d have a purpose. I’d be saved from telling the world I was a failure. I was over-the-moon about it all.
And then…crickets. It hardly got any sales. No matter how hard I tried. Very few.
I cried. I fell to the floor crying. Feeling like the world doesn’t want who I really am. That I’m a total failure. That I’ll never be able to figure it out. That I’m all over the place.
The year had just ended, and I’d officially been in business for myself for one year. I had given myself an entire year to discover my purpose, and I couldn’t.
As an act of resignation, I decided that I wanted to reframe the year, now that it was over. There was a lot of success there. I had time and space to heal and explore myself.
So, rather than have a pity party, I decided to host a ‘failure celebration’ for myself. I went into a spiritual Facebook group that I had joined during that year and offered up free branding sessions.
It was work I had designed way back in PR to help drill everything about a company—its values, messaging, positioning, even product design—down into just five or six “core messages” that were easy to make decisions from.
I thought that the least I could do was help some of these spiritual entrepreneurs with their work before I gave up.
On January 19, 2015, I ran six back-to-back sessions. They were over an hour each, and I actually had to stop the sessions to pee. But I just wanted to keep giving until I could shift my misery to some kind of success.
But these weren’t the same tech entrepreneurs I was used to. They were life coaches and therapists and yoga teachers and psychics. And every single one of them told me that I didn’t just discover their brand—I explained their life purpose to them in a way no one ever had before.
What?! Here I was—in the midst of my ‘failure celebration,’ ready to pack it all in, and people were telling me that I could give them the thing I was never able to give myself?
I didn’t believe it. So I decided to try it out on myself. I didn’t even know if it was possible to run one on myself, but I was desperate.
On January 19, 2015, I looked at whiteboard that had six words on it: Aligned. Zany. Free. Unmistakable. Successful. Vulnerable. Tears flowed from my eyes.
I was exhausted. I had worked all day for no money. But something inside of me was more alive than ever.
As I looked at the six words, something inside clicked. Of course the ‘failure celebration’ led me here—it was all of my genius. It was a Zany last-ditch effort and totally Vulnerable and really Freeing and shifting me into Alignment and Success. And it was Unmistakably me.
I spent the entire night considering every moment of my life. How the most successful moments made me feel these words. How the biggest failures made me feel the opposite. Why this relationship worked but that didn’t. Why this job opportunity worked but that didn’t.
It was like I had a map of my life.
It was overwhelming and emotional and confusing. In an instant, it was clear that I didn’t feel purposeful because almost nothing in my life fit.
So I bought one thing that fit—a pair of bright orange Calvin Klein underwear for $30. I’d never spent even close to that on a pair of underwear. But it was the first really conscious decision I’d ever made—choosing my genius. It was Aligned and Successful and Zany and Free and Unmistakable and Vulnerable.
It was the only thing that would make me feel all of those that I could access in that moment.
Let me tell you about that underwear. I wore it to every major speaking engagement I had. I wore it to propose to Garrett in Italy. I wore it on my very first day of the Sacred Circle. Hidden to everyone else—but secretly giving me permission to be myself every day.
Sadly, I’ve recently had to retire the underwear from extreme overuse. But I’ll never forget how something so simple—just being able to choose myself fully once—could transform everything.
I’ll never forget January 19, 2015, because every aspect of my life changed after that day. That night, I had a dream that led me to create the Sacred Circle. A month later, I contacted Sherri, and we began working together. A few months after that, I bought my house. And then proposed to Garrett. And so much has blossomed from there.
But, more than any external thing, I know my purpose without a shadow of a doubt. I know who I am. I know what I want and where I’m a genius. I know why certain traumas happened. And I’ve been able to work through them.
The two most important days in our lives are the day we are born and the day we find out why.
Everyone deserves to find out why.
*If you want to discover your own essence and ‘Brand Energies,’ you’re welcome to explore our proprietary Sacred Branding® methodology.