⚡️Kristen Kalp - Breathwork, biz coaching, and simple tools to help you navigate your interiors.

Ahoy there!

I help creative entrepreneurs make more money and meaning through breathwork, books, and business coaching10 4 year-long coaching spots in KK on Tap are now open!

New?  Please start here so I can properly introduce myself. 😉

🔥📚 Want to (re)gain access to your intuition and stop being defeated by asshole brain?  You want The Softness Sessions. We start September 19th!

The Quietly Subversive 3-Hour Work Day.

I’ve had a secret for a bunch of years, but I’ve felt too much SCARY BEING JUDGED FEAR to share it in any sort of meaningful or worthwhile way.

Here goes: most of my work days last for three hours or less.

I’ve been consciously shaping a shorter work day for myself for years now.

Before you form a mob and come at me with pitchforks because I’m such a spoiled brat, lemme tell you how this started.

For a bunch of years, I was struggling with depression. I also had worsening-but-undiagnosed thyroid issues. For about eighteen months there, I had both extremely intense thyroid issues and clinical depression.  (Story of how I slooooowly healed my thyroid here.)

Translation: naps were not optional. Getting out of bed and showering were serious achievements.

Not like, ‘Hehe I know! Showering is a pain in the ass.’ More like, ‘I have to lie down now that I’ve taken a shower since my body is experiencing a power failure.’

Where I could once happily work for eight to ten hours a day, the picture of productivity (see: capitalism), I found myself struggling to retain focus. I could only write for a few minutes at a time. I had trouble crafting zippy and witty responses to clients.

My brain fog was so severe that if you asked me to describe it in any detail, I would burst into tears and wobble my mouth at you like a sad, ancient animal with no will to live.

I was scared that my brain would never recover and therefore I’d have to give up writing forever.

Naturally, I decided to go down fighting. I cut my hours back again and again, beating myself up all the while: I’ll work until 4 pm. Until 3 pm. Until 2 pm. You can’t handle working until 2, really?

Okay fine, I’ll work until lunch. I was so embarrassed to be so ‘sick’ and ‘broken,’ but that’s how I ultimately came to set up a lasting schedule. (See also: your brain is an asshole and your shame is not interesting.)

I’ve currently got a 9:30 to Noon routine. That’s my time for getting absolutely everything important done: writing, podcast recording, emailing, selling, coaching, planning, and the like. Only two and a half hours to do it.

In the afternoon, I do tasks that don’t require as much of my magic: scheduling, uploading, downloading, and updating. That lasts for at least half an hour, sometimes up to 2 hours, but consists mostly of tasks that are optional or that take place away from my computer. I schedule time to do breathwork, cook dinner, stretch, pick up library books, and otherwise take damn good care of myself most afternoons. On Fridays, I coach until about 3 pm because I know I’ll have the weekend to recover if I overextend myself.

What I’ve found over the past few years of working-at-a-screen less and working-by-taking-good-notes-in-the-world more is fucking SHOCKING.

The softer I can be with myself, the more I can get done.

Not soft like ‘fuck it,’ but soft like ‘let’s do our best with clear priorities and well-defined tasks.’

When you’re only working for a few hours, you have no choice but to prioritize. There’s no time for clicking on a rabbit hole about author’s diaries, fiddling with Spotify playlists, scrolling on Instagram, squeezing in some online shopping, or eyeing the competition. No time for answering texts, fiddling with group chats, or distracting yourself with household tasks that are suddenly quite urgent because WHAT WILL PEOPLE THINK IF I HAVEN’T TAKEN OUT THE RECYCLING TODAY.

You’ve only got time for your work.

If you’re like, HOLY SHIT WHAT IS THIS MAGIC TELL ME HOW…let’s do this.

First, you’ll need to prioritize the shit out of your work life.

Let’s think of your work in three categories: magic, mogul, and muggle.

Magic is the work that ONLY you can do.

No one else can write your books, speak at your gigs, do your coaching sessions, or…whatever it is that people pay you (and only you) to do. Bear cannot send me to one of his DJ gigs, ’cause I’ll just play Ace of Base’s ‘The Sign’ on repeat until everyone goes home. That’s his magic.

My magic is writing, editing, communicating with peeps via the podcast, coaching, and holding or planning breathwork classes.

Magic is scheduled for your most productive time of day.

In my case, that’s first thing, which also keeps me from wading into my inbox and getting distracted by whatever is waiting for me each morning. Magic is blocked off for 1-2 hours on any given work day.

Most people skip their magic 100% of the time.

They try to schedule it for big blocks of uninterrupted time — preferably on a desert island — and allow every other urgent-but-not-deeply-important task to eat away at their work time. If you’ve ever dreamed of doing all your work Somewhere Far Away With No Interruptions for 7 to 30 days, you know this predicament well.

Making magic a daily activity changes the nature of your business and ups your quality of life significantly.

If I tried to shove all my most awesome talents into use for 6 hours on Friday, then left the rest of my week to things like spreadsheets, updates, and answering emails within 40 seconds of their arrival in my inbox, I would hate my life. (If you currently hate your business, I’ll bet that this lack-of-magic-time has something to do with it!)

If you’re like, ‘Okay, but uh…WTF is my magic, Kristen? What should go into that time for me?’

Some questions to suss out your magic:

What is it that only you can do?

What will make 5-years-from-now you proud?

What will move the ball forward on the project you’ve given the most significance at the moment?

Hint: that will rarely be answering emails the minute they come in, returning phone calls within 30 seconds of receiving them, or putting your best work at the least alive part of your day. My most alive part happens when I wake up, so I hit the breakfast train and get to work as quickly as possible. Some people say you MUST work out before you sit before a screen, but that takes up too much of my magic time.

Next, there’s moguling. This involves any and every activity you do to bring money into your business.

That’s selling, marketing, planning a launch, following up with potential clients, talking with potential clients, and letting current clients know about referral perks of any kind. (For example: refer a coaching client to me for KK on Tap and you get a free 1-hour coaching call! There are 5 spots left.)

If you’re afraid of selling or marketing — or simply new to it — you’ll naturally push this off until it’s absolutely necessary. Read: you’re out of money.

When you can make moguling a habit — even for 10 minutes a day — you make massive changes in how you perceive and talk about your business.

You promote your work before it’s crunch time. You respond to clients in a timely-but-not-instant timeframe. You handle any issues that come up before they’re a big deal, and you do so without trying to batch every last miserable marketing task imaginable into a single day at a time when you’re completely out of cash.

Eventually, you don’t avoid these activities because they are a tiny stripe of time built into your day between magic and muggling. They are not a dreaded task that sucks all of your mental energy, or an enormous task that feels far too stressful to even begin. Consistent workday moguling is one of the keys to how I get a great deal of work done in a small period of time without freaking out about how I should be doing more (and more and more and more and more).

To suss out moguling in your life:

How often do you mention your products and services to: your email list? To social media? To those you meet?

How many times do you follow up with potential clients before assuming they’re not interested?

If your work is limited in some capacity, are the number of available spots in your calendar extremely clear upon visiting your website? (i.e. 5 KK on Tap coaching spots are left for this year! Learn more here.)

Do you keep an updated spreadsheet of your actual and projected income for your business?

Do you keep a regularly-updated marketing calendar, and then stick to it?

Here’s how to make a marketing calendar if that’s new to you! Also if you’re like, OH GOD HOW DO I DO THESE THINGS, pick up a copy of Go Your Own Way: free yourself from business as usual.

If you’d like to begin to cultivate the habit of communicating with your peeps — i.e. to send a damn newsletter already — I’ll walk you through how to do that without wanting to curl up and die in my How to F*&(ing Communicate course.

Finally, there’s muggling. These are non-magical, ordinary tasks.

This is the great time sink of life: the scheduling of appointments, the answering of emails, the attending of meetings, and, frequently, the avoiding of much harder activities. Most peeps I coach tend to give this category about 90% of their total resources on any given day. (In case you’re like, ‘NO NOT ME I NEVER MUGGLE:’ scrolling on your phone is muggling 100% of the time.)

We all know that muggling is often urgent, which is how it skips to the front of our to-do lists. It also requires the least amount of risk on our part, as it’s generally shuffling messages around, making plans for everyday tasks, and staying afloat in life without making any waves.

If you’re risk avoidant or generally feeling tired on any given day, it’s absolutely normal for muggling to show up and take over your business life. Let’s change that.

To suss out muggling in your life:

Which everyday activities take up most of your time?

How many times a day do you check your email?

How many times a day do you respond to your email — because checking and responding are two different things?

How much time do you dedicate to taking care of everyday business needs, versus working on projects and tasks that only you can do?

Which recurring tasks need to be scheduled so that you don’t keep missing the time necessary to complete them each day/month/week? (Here’s everything I know about time management.)

Which muggling tasks can be outsourced to another human or batched on a regular timeframe (i.e. checking email and voicemail twice a day instead of every 2 minutes)?

The good news is, it’s fairly easy to steal time back from muggling.

The first and most important step to having a shorter work day is to STOP WORKING WHEN YOU’RE DONE WORKING.

If you only check your email twice a day for 20 minutes at a time, you’ll free up those hours where you’re sitting at the computer not-working, but feeling guilty about how little you actually have to accomplish today.

If you’ve handled your obligations, completed your magical time, and let your peeps know how much of your work is on offer at the moment, YOU ARE FREE TO MOVE ABOUT THE WORLD.

You’ll have to give up a tremendous amount of guilt to make this a shorter work day thing happen.

Ah yes, the guilt: I know it well. My friends are working so hard at their 9 to 5’s, shouldn’t I be miserable, too? My friend in corporate America answers more than 200 emails a day, shouldn’t I be able to answer my emails immediately in order to compensate for how few I handle? My other friend in corporate America is in meetings for 3 to 7 hours a day, so shouldn’t I be sitting at my computer to — in some strange and energetic way — atone for the fact that I’ve got my own business and could be doing anything at all right now?

You don’t have to curb your freedom because those you love aren’t as free.

To put it another way: the belief that we should be working for eight hours a day, five days a week, at a screen, without fail, is bullshit.

When you get softer, you can give yourself many permissions in order to work through your asshole brain’s nagging about how lazy and useless you are.

These might help you unlock a shorter work day:

Permission to work for as long as you have legitimate activities to complete — and then close up shop for the day.

Permission to schedule as much or as little work as you can handle on any given day — and in any given season of life.

Permission to keep your business as big or small as you’d like — particularly small, which gets shamed by internet gurus the world over.

Permission to give up scrolling, procrastinating, and other forms of bullshit in order to do your work and then get on with your day.

Permission to admit that screens are only a small part of many businesses! If you’re a dancer, dance. If you’re a painter, paint! If you’re a writer, write. On notebooks and away from screens whenever possible.

Let go of trying to control everything, or trying to find the thread that leads to all systems coming together perfectly, all ills disappearing, all boxes being checked, all signs pointing to go, all beings blissful at once. (This is much harder than it seems, and will require continued effort.)

If you’d like to experience my particular magic, look no further than The Softness Sessions, which start THIS WEEK!

The Softness Sessions will help you take the first steps toward being softer with yourself — with your schedule, with your productivity, and with what you can achieve on any given day — with the help of weekly wisdom throwdowns and breathwork.

Breathwork is an active 3-part meditation that is like a scrubby brush for your soul. It cleans up emotional residue, inherited or outdated thought patterns, and habitual actions. All you’ve got to do is lie down and breathe.

I’ll walk you through the common areas where we humans encounter major tangles — loneliness, mess, doubt, wandering the wilderness, steadiness, and joy — and then we’ll move through each one with breathwork.

You’ll come out the other side less attached to guilt, shame, fear, and the bullshit that’s lived in you for so long that you can’t see it anymore.

Expect to feel brighter, lighter, and softer at the end of the sessions.  Buy now!

 

P.S. How to *actually* change the whole damn world.

Nourishing or Numbing? One question to shift it all.

I’ve been hitting you with deep questions and lots of self aware examining in longer-than-usual podcasts — so this week I thought I’d include a single question reframe for your whole life.  Enjoy this episode of That’s What She Said!

Is it nourishing or numbing?

This question applies to each and every habit, task, relationship, boundary, pattern, or activity you complete.

Consider your commute, your screen habits, your food habits, your travel habits, your self care routines, and your time spent with those you love: nourishing or numbing?

At a deeper level, consider your business practices, the information you consume, the books you read, the shows you watch, and the people you interact with on a regular basis: nourishing or numbing?

The goal, of course, is to do less numbing and more nourishing.

Only of course it’s not that simple. We humans don’t magically switch off our numbing patterns just because we realize they’re numbing, nor do we naturally move toward genuine nourishment until we are in deep, nearly unspeakable pain. For me, seeking nourishment only took losing 40 grand, going through a divorce, battling depression for two decades, and waking up every day feeling like I was being suffocated by despair, as well as my thyroid giving out in a spectacular way. We’re pushed toward fast and quick solutions when we most desperately need deep care, deep rest, and deep understanding.

When we’re malnourished — whether at the physical level or the soul level — our brains send signals to get us some quick fixes and some time off.

We often reach for more and more numbing agents when we need nourishment most.

The more stressed or tired or depleted or frustrated we are, the more numbing we do — and repeat, and deepen the cycle, and repeat again, but this time with more retail therapy! And pop-up sales and coupons and free shipping! BEHOLD, I HAVE A WHOLE NEW WARDROBE AND MY SOUL FEELS FIIIIIIIIIIINE. ISH. (FINE-ISH. I’ll just be over here, weeping into my new sequined jumpsuit.)

Life can quickly become a numbing pattern spread across every waking moment, only now we need to find a way to numb the discomfort that comes with mounting credit cards bills as well…

How do you begin to build more nourishing habits, patterns, practices, and activities into your life?

You properly identify an activity as nourishing or numbing.

Only that identifying bit is really, really tricky.

Most activities can be nourishing or numbing, depending on circumstances and context.

Take, for example, dessert. If you’re working on your fifth gallon of ice cream this evening, we both know you’re numbing. But if you’ve been working incredibly hard to eat the most nutrient-dense foods on earth and you’re celebrating a milestone of some kind, that same ice cream can be absolutely nourishing.

This is why self care and soul care can be so tricky. We humans are smart enough to disguise numbing agents as nourishment, and we can use nourishing activities to numb when we do them excessively.

When you obsessively check email but don’t process it — meaning that you read but don’t respond to messages — you’re numbing. And probably working yourself into a panic, besides.

This also happens with marketing activities and making asks, which can be numbing when you turn them over and over (and over and OVER) in your mind instead of actually doing them. But when you show up, make asks, provide simple calls to action for your peeps, and stand in your worth (without making your work your worth)…that’s nourishing for your work all the way down.

Likewise, watching Brene Brown’s special on Netflix is nourishing AF. (If you haven’t yet watched it, HALT YOUR LIFE AND DO THAT NOW PLEASE.) Watching 22 episodes of anything back to back while lying on the couch and consuming DoorDash’s parade of fried foods, not so much.

A hot bath: nourishing. Hiding from your family in the bathroom for 6.3 hours during Christmas, armed with a bag of Doritos and your sound-proof headphones: numbing.

Getting 6-pack abs would be nourishing for me, since that would be making wildly new life patterns and choices, while it would be numbing for someone who has had an eating disorder and workout addiction.

You get the idea.

As you go about your day, take note of what is nourishing and what is numbing.

If you ‘don’t have time’ to notice, you’re numbing exceptionally hard today.

Days ‘off’ are not necessarily nourishing.

Days ‘off’ often involve doing work that isn’t done during the usual work week, so days ‘off’ are really catch-all times for doing chores offline.

On a recent ‘day off,’ I did five loads of laundry, cleaned the bathroom, went grocery shopping, hit up the pharmacy and the co-op for a few items, walked Neville, vacuumed my car, cleaned the kitchen, cooked dinner, and picked up my neighbor’s mail because they were on vacation. And I don’t even have kids.

That workload gets ever more unwieldy as you add more people to the mix, whether they’re friends, kids, relatives, roommates, or pets!

When was the last time you had a full, no responsibilities day off?

Can you schedule one right now for the near future, even if it’s simply sitting at home and kicking everyone else out of the house so you can hear yourself think?

How can you consciously create — and then protect — space to simply BE in your life without having to do a long list of chores, tasks, or errands?

Your brain will probably pop in with simple solutions and half-steps, here. What if we got rid of that one chore? What if we allowed ourselves twenty whole minutes to breathe some fresh air outside?

Please, please, don’t fall for the half-steps that don’t offer any long-term gains and only keep you paddling along, just-barely-not-drowning, at the surface.

You deserve better than an inner auction of your own time and value that ends in compromising all over the place.

I asked you how you can get a day to yourself — and your brain immediately called that impossible. It probably offered a few minutes as a compromise.

I asked when you can simply BE in your life — and your brain suggested you download some kind of app and start a new practice, which is one more thing to check off of your to-do list and/or beat yourself up for not doing.

Being — or practicing the art of being present — is a completely free, no apps required activity that involves no screens and probably your pets. When I say ‘being,’ I mean stepping outside and feeling the air on your face. Possibly looking at the sky, or maybe sipping a beverage, but not if that’s too much work or if you don’t feel like looking at the sky today.

To put this another way: it doesn’t count if you don’t enjoy it.

Busyness is often a numbing mechanism.

You eventually become afraid of slowing down, since you know that there’s a shit-ton of unprocessed emotion waiting for you in the silence. At some level, you don’t WANT to hear your thoughts or notice your feelings.

Maybe it’s a conscious decision to speed up and stay in motion, or maybe it’s a subconscious fear that if you actually listen to yourself, you’ll have to make some changes. Small changes, like scheduling yourself to have a little more time that’s not ‘on,’ or big changes, like ending a relationship or quitting your job.

LOOKING busy is also a numbing mechanism.

When you force yourself to sit at a screen and ‘work,’ even with nothing in particular to do, you’re feeding the part of your brain that’s been conditioned to tie your work to your worth, and numbing the Very Much Alive parts of you shouting that your work is done for today, and you’re free to move about the world as you please. (We’ll talk about that in detail in next week’s podcast!)

Where are you remaining busy to avoid feeling your feelings or having a confrontation with another person?

Where are you remaining busy in order to ‘put in your time’ for all those friends who work corporate jobs and don’t have the freedom to walk away from their desks right now?

When do you consciously slow down, and how often does that happen?

What would halting the busyness in your life look like if you started with being 10% less busy?

What would you cancel, ignore, or stop doing if I said your busyness would cost you $1,000 a week? $10,000?

(I’m making up that $10,000 number so you can see exactly how much would be *on the table and scheduled for deletion* if you had to pay a great deal of money to remain busy. Your priorities: in order.)

If you chronically describe yourself as ‘busy,’ slowing down is the first step. Only HOW do you slow down and it’s SCARY and UGH I have to much to DO, Kristen — I know. That brings me to my next point.

Softness Sessions book
Breathwork is nourishing because it’s soul care and self care, combined.

It maxes out at taking an hour of your day and can only be done once per day, so it can’t take over your life. Breathwork is a little like going to the gym or eating well or going for a walk outside even though the weather isn’t perfect — you’ll feel better in the end. But brain is like, NO EAT THE ICE CREAM.  AND SIT HERE UNTIL THE END OF TIME STREAMING MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY FILMS IF THAT’S WHAT YOU REALLY NEED.   

You’ll feel both better and lighter after breathwork, but starting a practice can be intimidating. Like, how long do I do it for, and when, and what happens if I have questions?

The Softness Sessions are all about introducing you to breathwork in small, steady ways.

We’ll build your stamina week by week for six weeks, then meet live for a full-length group breathwork session on October 29th.

You’ll get yourself some soul-level nourishment every step of the way.

I’ve condensed everything I know about human life universals — loneliness, mess, doubt, wandering the wilderness, steadiness, and joy — into potent and dense audio magic, then added breathwork to the end. (And made a book to ship your way the minute you join.)

We’ll rebuild the muscles that have atrophied from numbing all over the place, and we’ll reconnect you with…you.

Your voice.

Your intuition.

Your desires and dreams.

Your truest work.

Your deepest, most wild and amazing possibilities.

We’ll stop the takeover of numbing once a week starting September 19th, and see what happens as a result.

If you dig my work and are even remotely curious — and I’m guessing both of those things are true because you’re here, right now — pick up The Softness Sessions n-o-w.

Buy a seat in The Softness Sessions

P.S. Why breathwork?  And how to reclaim joy even if you’re currently miserable, sad, and/or angry.

Hiding isn’t the answer. (I wish it would be, though.)

Hiding isn't the answer // podcast by Kristen Kalp

Before we dive in to this week’s podcast episode, I’d like to acknowledge that the lessons here have taken a bunch of years to condense into anything even remotely resembling words. My first impulse when it comes to facing the world is to hide 100% of the time. I prefer to hermit and retreat and withdraw. Those are tendencies I actively push against and question on an almost-daily basis. So.

I know, you’d rather hide.

At a business level, it’s scary to let your work be seen. You’ve heard that ‘if you build it, they will come,’ and they’re not coming. Maybe you should…build it again? Pin ever-more-complicated options to Pinterest and save up to give someone ten grand and solve it for you? Hope for the best and get a second job?

Or you say you’re ready to take on more clients or sell more work, but you can’t bring yourself to respond to emails, phone calls, or inquiries when they come in.

What’s wrong with you, and with your business? There must be something so secretly, desperately wrong that everyone but you can see it, right?

Nope!

You’re probably a master of hiding.

Here are some really fun, reaaaaaally smart ways I’ve hidden my work:

For years, only print versions of books were available, even though ebook versions are easier for me to host and sell — and also more profitable. (Pay what you can for any of my books here.)

For (again) years, I consistently forgot to read my poems on the podcast or share them anywhere at all. Did my bio identify me as a poet? Yup. Did that translate to my sharing more?  Not without effort.

I used to mention something once or twice, casually, and then assume it was a failure because it didn’t sell out instantaneously. LOOKING AT YOU, EVERY ENTREPRENEUR EVER!

Repetition is a kindness.

Everyone has too many emails, too many mundane tasks, too many notifications, and not enough brain space to see, love, read about, and buy a product in one fell swoop.  It’s often the third or fourth mention that garners any real interest, and only firm deadlines that make people respond in a decisive way.  (Also if you’d like to break up with your phone, meet Space, a 21-day email class to help you do just that!)

I used to think no one wanted to hire me if they didn’t respond to my offerings immediately, even after I began repeating myself again and again.

I routinely have people sign up for coaching who tell me how many years they’ve been following me. Current record: nine.

It’s a long game, people. (Also, there are six coaching spots left and you should talk to me about working together, okay? K@kristenkalp.com)

For years, I ended my talks about things for sale in question marks (I’m coaching?) and only noticed it later when listening to the podcast.  I. AM. SO. AWESOME.

I also used to rush sales talk and then relax when I got to the free stuff. Only That’s What She Said is an ad-free, not-sponsored podcast, so I have every right to talk about how to hire me and purchase my work within it. (You have the right to do the same with the things you offer, too.)

Here are some ways you might be hiding in business:

🌈 Can I easily locate buy now, book now, or e-mail me buttons? Is there an easy way to purchase what you’re selling?
🌈 Can people figure out where you’re located easily, particularly if you have a local business?
🌈 Do you have a separate sales page for each product or service you offer, or are you hiding your best one with a ‘coming soon’ placeholder and/or outdated information?
🌈 Are your current products prominently placed or featured in menu bar?
🌈 Can we easily access the work you prefer to be paid for doing?
🌈 Can people sign up to hear more from you through an e-mail list?
🌈 No really, an e-mail list: can you access people in their inbox at a time of your choosing? (Need help? Zero to email list in 15 minutes.)
🌈 Do you actually send e-mails to the people who have signed up to hear more from you? (Need help? How to F*&*ing Communicate is for you.)

At a personal level, hiding gets worse.

You want to hide from the globe (see: systemic oppression, Amazon fires, melting polar ice caps, rise of fascism, etc, etc, etc…), and then from your life (see: never-ending productivity and routine and WHY AM I NOT ON A TROPICAL BEACH WITH MY OWN PERSONAL BUTLER RIGHT NOW) and then from yourself (despair? Nipping at myyyyyy heels? No, never!).

But you tell yourself you have to keep going.

So you shove down the despair, show up for work, watch the news, contribute to campaigns and causes like a good citizen, and feel…not one iota better.

Why do you still feel like a bundle of yuck?  Because step one was shoving down your feelings.

It was labeling one particular emotion ‘bad’ or ‘unproductive’ or ‘negative’ or simply not allowed, and then plowing over it with your everyday activities and hoping it wouldn’t return. But of course it returns, so you shove it down HARDER, like a kid trying to hold bigger and bigger beach balls under water for days and then weeks and months at a time. Of course it’s not working, but you just have to try HARDER, right?

Just try harder and harder and put in more and more effort and hope no one notices how you’re getting more and more dead inside. OR you can start to come out of hiding.

Ways you might be hiding in life, sourced from my own hiding places:

🌈 Do you talk about things that matter to you or try to keep conversation easy breezy, no big deal?
🌈 Do you admit your desires and dreams and the ways you want to make meaning in the world to yourself? …to others?
🌈 Are you consistently turning down the volume on yourself so as not to be seen as ‘too much’ of something?
🌈 Are you consistently turning up the volume on everyone else so that you can no longer hear your own tiny whispers of identity and intuition?

I’ve been there and tried alllll the tactics to just shut the hell up and be less sensitive.

They failed. Miserably.

What if…you let yourself feel what you’re feeling?

What if you let yourself feel the despair and the hardship and the pain and all the things you cannot change — and then let those particular pieces of pain go, simply because you cannot change them?

Not because you don’t care or don’t try or don’t have enough useful and intersectional beliefs, but because you are one single human.

Just one.

No matter how much you try or how many ‘you have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce’ memes you consume.

You’re just one person.

How can you begin to make peace with a.) the fact that you can’t change everything,
but b.) you can absolutely change SOMEthing, when you decide what that something is?

You start with your own interiors.

When you decide to stop hiding, you begin to navigate through the loneliness and mess and doubt that lives within you, and come out the other side better and lighter and more joyful than you’ve ever been.

That sounds impossible and silly and GOD YOU’RE SO NAIVE KRISTEN and also…don’t you hope that it’s possible?

To be able to sit with despair and then rise up and do your work.

To look the messes in your life in the face without fear or judgement.

To face the loneliness within your heart and hold it tenderly, without trying to make it wrong or bad or a sign that you’re broken.

To catch doubt doing its asshole brain thing — and then to keep going, without believing a word it says.

That’s my hope for every human on the planet — that you’ll find a method, a practice, or a way of being that helps you give up hiding from yourself first, and from the world second.

For me, that practice is breathwork. I held a live breathwork session in Philly this week, and I was amazed by the amount of energetic and emotional clearing we completed in about an hour. Eight women laid down on the floor of a knitting shop, were introduced to the breath, and got to work.

They ranged in age from their twenties to their seventies, and each one wiped her eyes and thanked me when we finished breathing. They let go of shame and doubt and rage and grief and pain, and they also laughed and giggled and smirked and shook their hips and got freer than they had been a few hours earlier. They all reported that time got wobbly, and that they’d never experienced anything quite like it before.

Breathwork is work, yes, but it’s also a no-accessories-needed way to come home to yourself.

You lie down, you do the breathing pattern, you come back to reality a short time later as a lighter and freer human.  (For you: a whole podcast episode about breathwork.)

If breathwork seems like diving into the deep end — that’s exactly what it is.

Starting a breathwork practice can be scary for lots of people, which is why The Softness Sessions are a slower, steadier entry point for giving it a try.

In The Softness Sessions, you’ll hear me talk, podcast-style, and then we’ll do a short breathwork practice. It gets longer every week for six weeks, and then we’ll finish with a full-length live session for everyone in the program.

If you’re scared of your own interiors because you’ve been ignoring them for a long time (or possibly forever);

if you’re curious about breathwork but are afraid this won’t work or you won’t get your money’s worth or you haven’t found a practitioner you love;

if you’d like to find out if those things I said about loving yourself through mess and doubt can be true for you;

if you’d like to continue to explore what’s going on within you instead of shoving your emotions into tiny containers and hoping they disappear;

The Softness Sessions are for you.

They’re for coming to terms with your own humanity softly, and slowly, and with great care.

I know you’d rather plow ahead and do everything ever, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, because the world is literally on fire, and overachieving tendencies die hard. (Also: feelings. You have too many of them and you want to ignore them entirely. I’ve been there and committed myself to that for A WHOLE DECADE and can report that Try Not to Feel Anything Experiment as Failed. Completely.)

I know you’re not sure you can make any sort of difference because you’re just one human and you can’t keep your car clean, so how are you supposed to make some sort of global impact.

I know you’re tired of being tired, and I know you know the answer isn’t adding butter to your coffee or taking 16 new supplements.

There’s a place of deep rest and peace within you.  Promise.

You can access it any time you like through breathwork.

That’s scary, yes, and intimidating, yes, and also wildly freeing and gorgeous and stunning and lovely, too.

Hiding isn’t the end of your story. It’s the beginning.

Because when you stop hiding — well, that’s when things get way more interesting.

We’ll use breathwork, writing, poetry, podcasts, art, and intuition to free you from the alluring and seductive chains of invisibility. It’s time to be seen, already.

Let’s start with you seeing yourself clearly.

Join The Softness Sessions now.

Buy a seat in The Softness Sessions

P.S. Softness is the secret.