Your Fierce Original Voice

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I like the word fierce. Why? Because it means so many things: you can love fiercely, believe fiercely, live fiercely, and write fiercely. It’s not an angry word. It’s a courageous word. Watch a toddler at play, or a child swallowed up in the ethereal underwater world of deep concentration, and you will see fierceness. Fierceness is an essential element of our humanity, an essential element of what some now describe as “flow.”

As we grow and adapt to the world, putting on our outer armor, we can lose touch with our fierceness, we suppress our fierce original voice. As adolescents, we do this purposefully, in the most painfully self-conscious way. We do it expressly to blend in with the crowd. Later on, we sometimes go so far as poke fun at teenagers while believing, often falsely, that we’ve outgrown the habit of striving toward invisibility. This, I would suggest, is the most dangerous delusion of all: the drowsy conviction that we’re expressing authentically when we’re not.

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The problem is we get swallowed—even hypnotized—by the habitual patterns and repetitive messages that tell us, as writer and author Laura Davis puts it, “that we don't have what it takes, that we don't have the time or the talent. Or that what we have to say doesn't matter.”

None of this is true, but it is seductively safe to believe it. Seeking to reclaim our fierce original voice feels much riskier, much more exposed. This is how our original voice becomes so buried within us that we’re not even sure what will happen if we try to use it. Will it crack and break? Will it sound out at all?

Be assured, it will! We can reject the false security of habitual patterns and repetitive messages. Your fierce original voice is your birthright, it is the light along the path to your truest self.  

A writing retreat is a powerful way to ignite your voice—and light your own path home. First of all, a writing retreat gets you out of your daily life and into a new and unfamiliar setting. That in itself is golden. More importantly, though, a writing retreat is a way to say "yes" to yourself and “no” to the repetitive tapes about not being good enough or having anything important to say. The power of this message cannot be overstated. Together with a retreat’s inherent protected time to dive within (with the aid of extraordinary imagination-building exercises and guidance) this message of "yes" becomes a compelling invitation to emerge from the hypnotic depths of daily routine and come face to face with startling insights and invigorated creativity. In the process—especially with the support of gentle yoga and meditation—you’ll discover and transform parts of yourself you may not even remember exist.  

This is the reason, above all, for the Summer Solstice Retreat. It’s a reason more central than getting work done (which you will), more powerful than immersing in specifics of craft (yes, we’ll do that, too), and more integral than experiencing firsthand the symbiotic benefits of writing and yoga and meditation (which you will love). It’s the beautiful, clear sound of your fierce, original voice. Your birthright.

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