Our Expansion, Your Challenge

Journey to Hope is on the rise!
We have such exciting news to share with all of you. First, I want to apologize for skipping out on our Magical Monday’s. It has been so crazy around here in the world of non-profits and we have been neglecting our blog…but it is all in the name of good.
The first very exciting piece of news is that we are starting in Youth in Progressthis week, and starting in the Champ House on January 31st!! We couldn’t be more thrilled to be in the midst of this amazing and wonderful transformation and expansion.
This past weekend, I was honored to teach at the Girl Empower Workshop with Sheri Boyle, and company. I had the honor of meeting some wonderful, sweet middle school girls and their mothers and told them all about Journey to Hope and our mission. It was an eye opening experience to watch each of these girls as they practiced yoga and began to understand why it was so important for us to be in the community. We graciously received a very generous donation of $125! It was a powerful workshop, full of rock stars like Jessica Avitable & Janell Hofmann – two amazingly powerful local women who shared their causes and love for Nia and Made By Survivors.
As a part of this workshop each of us was asked to pick a rock. As part of a New Years resolution, we were to write a positive word on one side – and a negative word on the other. Whenever we thought the negative word (mine was judgment and hate of myself & others), we were to replace it with our positive word (love, Isvara Pradihana & Ahimsa). I then went to the beach this weekend with my cousins and threw this rock into the ocean. It helped me to release the love & light & hate out into the unknown, and trust in my ability to remember my positive word.
My positive words were love, isvara pradihana, and ahimsa. Love is a word many of us know. It is full of light, happiness, deep roots, family (old and new), friends, pets, joy and so much more!
Isvara pradihana is the trust in God, or the universe. To help guide you to where you are supposed to be. This does not mean it will guide you into a new mansion with Brad Pitt as your hubby, but it does mean that if you send your intentions out into the world, the universe will guide you to where you are supposed to be!
Ahmisa is nonviolence. For myself, ahimsa means nonviolence within you. The ability to NOT pop a pimple. The ability to look in a mirror and call yourself beautiful. The ability to love yourself, truly!!

These words were such an inspiration to my weekend, and hopefully to the young women we served this weekend. It reminded me that we have been meeting so many people throughout this journey and I am so blessed to be surrounded by powerful women and men in these communities. People who are willing to go out of their way to help others, who put everything they have into the locations we serve. Katie from Youth in Progress, Mary, Dee, Rachel, and Rebecca from Cape Cod Center for Women, Elton & Company from Latham Center, Randie fromTransition Centers, Jennie from West Dennis Library and Carolyn from the Champ House!
These men and women dedicate their lives to helping others and it is such a joy to watch and be a part of their journey, as we venture through our own. But it is not just these amazing people who help – it is also YOU. People I have met on the street who offer me a smile, the connections I make in a conversation with a new friend, the networking, the kindness, and the joy.
If we all take a moment to appreciate the joy that surrounds our world, and us we would find ourselves in a much kinder place. Sure, there are those who are mean. But we do not need to feed into their negative worlds. We can remove ourselves from their presence. After all: we are an average of the top five people we spend the most time with. If we spend time with those who practice yoga, believe in love and preach kindness – we will be an average of all those wonderful qualities.
My challenge to you this week, as we grow and expand Journey to Hope, is for you to grow and expand yourself. If you have a judgment or negative thought, try to replace it with love. If you want to apply to a nutrition school, pick up a book for the GRE and start studying! If you want to grow a garden, walk into the garden store and ask what the best winter plants are! Do it!! Even in taking the first step towards something, you are finding yourself on a path of growth and expansion, love and light.
Get out there – do yoga & make life sparkle!

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