Riley Reign has found it to be her life calling to inspire others while she is inspired by light, nature, rich colors, and the stories of beautiful souls around her. Finding her passion and bliss in both art and writing, she spends her time creating one of a kind artwork involving pressed flowers, watercolor, and calligraphy. As well as the Spirit & Soul blog. As the curator and writer of the Spirit and Soul blog she wishes to bring light and motivation to those who need it. She currently resides in the beautiful Colorado.
Ahhh, Resistance. That constrictive feeling that you think is telling you to, “Run!” That feeling that whatever you’re about to do is too uncomfortable, too scary, too much for right now…
How would it feel if I told you that Resistance is a tool?!
That pesky, uncomfortable, fight or flight feeling we call Resistance is a tool. It is a tool for growth, it is a tool for facing your fears, and it is a tool for transformation.
Steven Pressfield, the author of The War of Art deciphers the difference between being an amatuer and professional as, “An amateur is an artist who loses out to Resistance. A professional is an artist that beats Resistance, daily.” Pressfield refers to Resistance as an energy or entity that is, “a repelling force. It’s negative. Its aim is to shove us away, distract us, prevent us from doing our work.”
Someone who is mastering themselves and their work is moving through Resistance on a weekly basis at the least. Because, you see, Resistance is a sign that whatever you are resistant toward is an opportunity to grow, to show up, and to claim your own profession.
So, what does one do when Resistance arises + bubbles to the surface?
Feel the fear, and do it anyway. Acknowledge that your Resistance is a tool, a sign to keep going. To go with even more courage that you may have before. Bless the Resistance you are feeling, and grow forward with your bad self.
Claim your Resistance as an important part of your process, because it is. Feeling and acknowledging the Resistance is a crucial part of being able to move through the Resistance itself.
I am so fucking excited and honored to share today’s Transformation Inspiration interview with you, because today’s feature is so inspiring to me. Perhaps I’m a little biased, as the bad-ass you’re about to meet is my own dad, but I know that even without my bias this man is inspiring many more than he knows and that ripple effect will only continue to grow.
Keith McCoy is a husband, a father and an entrepreneur currently living in Colorado raising his family while growing a wellness business with his wife. Driven by the ideals of freedom, empowerment and radical accountability intermixed with a passion to serve whenever and wherever the need arises, his book, Choose Different is just one of many ways to increase an ever-growing global ripple.
For inquiries or speaking engagements please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Below, you’ll find a bit of Keith’s story and where he is now written in his own words, from an excerpt of his brand new book (available now), Choose Different, and then we’ll get into this awesome interview.
“My intention with this book is to bring to light for you what I believe to be one of the most important, if not the most important, principles that defines how I move about my days, weeks and life now. It is to share with you how I was able to come from the life described above and live this – I have been married to the same amazing woman for 20 years. We have 7 (soon to be 8) beautiful kids together. Even though I tried my damnedest in the beginning to sabotage this relationship, and I certainly caused her some pain, she stuck by me. If not for her I do not know where I would be today. I will always maintain that she was the first to teach me that I deserved to be loved unconditionally. She taught me that I needed to love myself. Because of that I learned somewhere along the line that I had to take responsibility for me; for who I was and for the consequences of my actions.
I was forced to see the ripple effect my actions would cause and to hold myself accountable to those ripples. The reality is that in every single thing we do, consciously or otherwise, we leave a mark, there is a cause and an effect. In everything we do, we have a choice. We may often feel like we don’t. And as we will discuss again, feelings aren’t facts. I recently heard a quote that aligns perfectly with this concept – Reality is often harsh, but always fair. So when you step back and look at the reality of your life, if you truly want clarity, you must remove the emotion and see the situation for what it is: The result of your choices. Each choice has a ripple, a butterfly effect, that either affects us, and those around us, in a detrimental way or in a way that benefits us. We cannot get away from this universal truth. And the sooner you can realize, understand and truly appreciate that you are in control of your decisions, and that ultimately the choices you make are the most important thing in how you live your life, the sooner you can begin to live your life by design.” – Keith McCoy, author of Choose Different
Now, let’s get into this super special edition of Transformation Inspirations and get on with the interview bit, shall we?
Where were you at before you transformed your life? What was your experience, emotional state, and perspective like?
I was angry and lost. Broke and living in a victim mentality. My marriage was on the rocks and my relationship with my kids was not a good one.
During that period of your life, what did you wish for or dream of the most for yourself?
I didn’t dream or wish for anything. I didn’t believe that was really possible.
When your life began to change, what cause the shift(s) for you?
I realized that if I didn’t make a change I would lose my kids. I would most likely end up alone. I decided that radical change needed to be made immediately and so I chose to stop drinking and to turn inward. To take full responsibility of my actions and to not blame anyone else.
What did your transformation look like for you, and how did the experience feel?
I dove into Eastern Philosophy. I read Dharma Punx by Noah Levine and Awakening the Buddha Within by Lama Surya Das. In the beginning I was more angry and confused because i only realized how asleep I had been and how asleep most of the rest of us are. In my attempts to find center I only got deeper into frustration. It took a while for me to swing back and realize that the only journey I need to be concerned with is my own. And that how aware or unaware anyone else was or wasn’t really wasn’t my concern.
What practice, tool, or mindset has been the most meaningful and impactful for you along your journey?
Radical Accountability. I am the product of my choices and exactly where I choose to be. Sometimes that is an unconscious choice, or there are unintended consequences of the choices I make. But they are mine and I embrace them. The wins or the lessons, whatever the result.
Having gone through the transformation that you have now, what would you say to your past self?
Honestly? I wouldn’t talk to my old self. I have often said that 2017 me and 2005 me would not be friends. But given the opportunity to do so I would tell him to read Choose Different and let that stand on its own.
Where is your life now? What is your experience, emotional state, and perspective like?
I live a very fulfilled life. I still have unachieved business goals and things I want to do but I have clarity in how to get them and understanding that they will come when they’re supposed to and when I have learned the lessons I need to learn that will make me the person who can handle the abundance I am attracting. I have no true complaints and have learned, and still practice improving, loving what is and becoming the best version of myself possible.
Aside from my immense gratitude for my Dad, he is a living, breathing, legacy leading example of what it means to show up, choose different, and lead both the life you want to and a life that is continuously giving. If you look at your life and the state of things surrounding you and think, “I couldn’t change this if I tried, so why even try.” I hope that you can look at my dad and all of the incredible people featured in this series and know that you can Choose Different. Any moment in time can be your quantum moment. All you’ve got to do is choose.
Personal + spiritual growth, it sounds so pretty doesn’t it? It is one of the messiest things a person can journey through, and I invite you to know that the mess is the exact reason it is such a beautiful and empowering process. Many of us begin this journey because the sparkle of love + light and enlightenment look so good, and then we begin and we learn that so much of this journey is learning how to rise from the bullshit. That experience is a messy one.
I’d like to invite you to embrace the mess, and invite it to empower you. Because let’s be real, the mess is the only reason we can grow in the first place. How does a tree’s soil gain enough moisture for a tree to properly grow and thrive? Icy winter’s, stormy summers, and a whole lot of changing climates. The cold of the winter empowers the tree because the tree needs the winter snow to fall and melt. The crashing + pouring storms of the summer empower the trees in the same way, pushing the tree to take it’s roots to a place that will hold it stably, raining water into the soil for the tree to be nourished.
We’ve got icy winters and summer storms of our own and those seasons are messy, but it is within that mess that we learn. It is from the darkness that we can know light, and it is from our own messes that we can find our messages and our lessons.
There will be times where you don’t know what to say or do, and you won’t know what the right next step will be. There will be times when you feel like you’re going a little bit crazy, but damn you’re so passionate about being able to grow and be as empowered as you can be.
There will be moments when your truth will trigger someone else’s fear, and you’ll likely be named, blamed, and seen as the problem itself.
The magic is though, that we get to choose. We get to choose to play small and keep ourselves safe. We get to choose to live in our passion and take on the mess because let’s be real it’s kind of fun after the fact, and we get to choose to become what we want (or not).
Is it messy? Sure. Is it sometimes like trying to catch your breath when you’re caught in the current of a wave? Definitely.
But do you remember being a kid and finger painting off of the paper and onto the table, or maybe even yourself? Sure, you got in trouble, after a minute it was uncomfortable, but damn it was worth it to experience that freedom and creation.
Life is fucking messy! But you get to choose who you are, and how you live. So live within the mess with as much grace and joy as you can. Embrace the mess, dance with it, invite it to create (with) You.
If you have any questions that you’d like answered about this topic, leave them in the comments section down below and I will answer them on Facebook Live tomorrow (Nov. 4th, 2017) at 7 am. MST on the Riley Reign fanpage.
I am so beyond thrilled to be launching this brand new interview series, Transformation Inspirations, with the vibrantly inspiring soul that is Ariela Goldstein.
Ariela is a spiritualista, intuitive interior designer, and the owner and creative director of Hamsa Interiors.
Love of the arts and spirituality are the driving forces behind my work. Its my mission to shine a light into your world by reflecting your souls beauty into your space so that you embrace who you are, knowing you already embody everything you hope for.
Below, you’ll find Ariela’s story written in her own beautiful and vulnerable words, and then we’ll jump into her stunning interview.
“Raised in an affluent town in the suburbs of New York, I was given every opportunity life could offer. As a young girl I believed that my future was bright and I would one day be a part of something magical.
After my parents divorce, my older brother began to act out violently and suffer from mental illness. I was a very sensitive soul and all I wanted was for everyone to be happy. It was tough growing up in his shadow and our family struggled for many years to support his journey. Feeling left out, I succumbed to anxiety and depression, lost interest in school and turned to drugs and alcohol to cope.
When I went away to college I was determined to straighten things out, focus on my studies and get my life on track. At the end of my first semester, my high school sweetheart fell ill. The doctors could not determine his infection and due to complications he fell into a coma and never recovered. I visited him and held out hope until it just became too hard to continue watching him suffer. Fortunately I re-enrolled in school, but unfortunately I turned back to drugs and alcohol to numb the pain.
My transformation began when I was at my breaking point. I knew something had to change drastically or I would end up dead. It was time.
When I made the decision to finally turn my life around, miracles began to happen in major ways. I was living away from home in a city where I knew very few people so I asked the universe for help to make enough money to get out of my current lease and move back home to recover. Almost immediately I found a gig that covered all my expenses. This was the first sign that everything would be ok as long as I continued to make positive choices. Having my prayers answered so quickly, solidified my faith in the process and allowed me the strength to take each next step towards my eventual freedom from anxiety, depression and struggle.
The power to change rests in each decision you make. I have learned to design my life in a way that feels abundant and alive. I live in a beautiful place, work in a field that brings me joy, am connected to a joyful community of friends, have a supportive loving family, and feel extremely lucky to be alive. “ ~ Ariela Goldstein
Before we get into the interview, I want to give a HUGE moment of honor and acknowledgement to Ariela. While we were preparing this interview she voiced some nervousness to me, “I’m scared to share my journey because it was such a personal, painful part of my life that I’ve tried to overcome, and bury ever since.” She felt so called to share her transformation and use it for good, even if she was feeling uneasy about it. And I feel like this is a powerful sentiment to the entire process of transformation. It’s messy, and it’s not easy, but when we find support and an energy that feels good we are truly empowered and can transform anything we set our mind to. So thank you, Ariela, for kicking off this series with a powerful bench-mark for the power of vulnerability, realness, and light.
Where were you at before you transformed your life? What was your experience, emotional state, and perspective like? –
My daily experience was anxiety, fear, lack of understanding, confusion about what to do, where to go, what choices to make. I had no sense of self or sense of direction. I berated myself for not knowing how to navigate life and had little hope for the future.
When your life began to change, what cause the shift(s) for you? –
An angel rescued me. Literally.
I met a pastor who saw my struggle and befriended me. He was young, cute and seemed to really care about what was happening to me. I listened. We went out to dinner. We went on hikes. I guess I thought he was pursuing me. And then one day he introduced me to god. We were sitting on top of a mountain looking down at the city, and he asked me “How could all this exist if there wasn’t a god?” And for the first time in my life I felt connected to the world.
What did your transformation look like for you, and how did the experience feel? –
I moved back home, got a job at a gym, hung out with other sober people, started to eat healthy and take care of my body, and started to think about what I wanted the rest of my life to look like. It felt good but it wasn’t much better than being a mess. I had to feel my anxiety and fears and face them head on. It was hard and it took a long time to see the happy version of me was the real me. My sense of identity had to be shattered in order to build a new vision for my life.
What practice, tool, or mindset has been the most meaningful and impactful for you along your journey? –
The most useful tool has been yoga, for sure. Connecting with my body and feeling strong and capable physically, gives me an internal sense of power and confidence and is the catalyst for a shift from ego to spirit mindset. I get so many clear messages during yoga. And the most useful mindset tool is gratitude. No matter how bad things may seem there is always something simple to appreciate about life.
Having gone through the transformation that you have now, what would you say to your past self? –
This is a beautiful question!
Your life is gonna be fucking amazing.
It’s ok to be in pain sometimes, but it is NOT who you are.
It’s not your job to take care of everyone else.
Someday you are going to be the one to teach other people how to get through hard times.
Where is your life now? What is your experience, emotional state, and perspective like? –
Today I woke up next to a beautiful person and friend. I fed and walked my sweet puppy Kayla. I went to a calming, grounding yoga class in a lovely little hideaway studio nearby. I ate yummy food. I played chess with my friends son. I was on call for work and in the meantime did some writing. I prepped for work tomorrow. I cleaned my home and now I’m cooking dinner and chatting with friends. Life is beautiful.
Not everyday is like today but most days are. Whenever I’m having a hard time I know where to turn and always find my way back home to myself. I have a strong sense of who I am, what I want, and where I’m going. I have a huge amount of faith that things will work out no matter what, that stems from a strong sense of faith in myself. If you ever wonder if it’s possible to make it through the mess, please reach out to someone who’s been there. You are capable of more than you could ever imagine.
I don’t know how you could possibly read this interview and not leave it feeling inspired + empowered. Ariela is such a vibrant light of an example! Transformation is possible, even if it feels impossible. A beautiful life is available to you, you’ve just got to claim it as your own. And most importantly, you’ve got everything you need within you to become who and what ever you want.
If this story inspired and empowered you in any way, if you had an A-HA moment, or if you resonated with this interview at all, leave a comment below sharing what inspired you and how you will use that inspiration for good. To connect more with Ariela and her vibrant light and work you can find her at hamsainteriors.com.
We’re back! Hello, November!!! And hello, You! Before we get too into this blog, I want to let you know if you haven’t heard yet, Spirit + Soul is going back to it’s regular schedule of weekly blogs and adding a weekly FB Live chat to go along!!! Be sure to like Spirit & Soul and Riley Reign on facebook to get access to those FB Lives! They will only be available for 24 hours after the live each, so be sure to follow along.
Now, everyone has some form of a personal vision. Be it a grand vision, a simple vision, or a world changing mission kind of vision. I see so many people struggling to step into that vision and begin living it out though, so how does one realize their powerful vision?
This has been something I have been personally navigating and learning through over the last few weeks especially. As I have been shedding old stories and making space for opportunity and miracles that are always surrounding me, and writing new stories for myself, I found myself asking, “But, how do I become that person?” I know that I can, but HOW?? Elevating to the next-level is scary and often integration is messy in the most perfect sense of the word, but actually getting yourself there requires a hell of a lot of getting out of your own damn way.
And also, really stepping into yourself wholly. Simultaneously.
Here’s what I’ve learned again and again in the last few weeks as I navigate my own next-level:
Ah yes, you get the results you show up for. So how do you embody your vision? How do you BECOME that person you daydream of and truly know you have everything within you to become?
Show. The. Fuck. Up.
Take the next step, and the next after that, and the next after that. Walk your path. Own your journey. Keep going. Follow your soul’s callings, and show up for the guidance.
How does the person you want to become live their life? What about their life is different, more expansive, more high-vibe, or more next-level than your current life?
That vision is your road-map. Show up for it. Follow it. Use those differences in lifestyle and presence between your current state and your visionary state as stepping stones to show up for, execute, dedicate yourself to, and you will begin to embody your vision. You will begin to become. You’ve got to choose to get out of your own way to show up for this version of you.
You’ve got to get out of your own way just enough for you to allow yourself to step into your power. You’ve got to get out of your way just long enough for you to empower yourself, get inspired, and never look back.
You have the vision. You know the way.
If you want it madly enough, you’ll show up for it in a way that will place you in alignment (and eventually embodyment) with your vision.
If you have any questions about this topic, leave them in the comments section down below and I will answer them on Facebook Live tomorrow (Nov. 4th, 2017) at 7 am. MST on the Riley Reign fanpage.