3 Simple Steps for Finding & Maximizing My Word of the Year

Choose Your Words Wisely

Happy 2016! At the start of each new year, I love the idea of selecting one meaningful, motivating word to serve as a personal guide for the next 12 months. And I have three simple steps to do it.

STEP 1: Choose it wisely. To choose my word each year, I first imagine how I want to feel on December 31st, looking back at what I’ve experienced and achieved. What positive theme do I want to be able to see weaving through my life as I reflect on the past year? Sometimes it helps to notice the experiences and patterns I’m tired of and want to release from, and then figure out what the flip side of that would look like. Sometimes I want to build upon awesomeness that’s begun sprouting up; I want a word that reminds me to nurture and nourish that.

STEP 2: Use it wisely. And then, throughout the year, I use my word as a litmus test. In any situation, I can ask myself if it lines up with my word of the year. If it doesn’t, that’s a good indication that I’m off-track and need to recalibrate.

STEP 3: Don’t forget it. Take it from someone who’s been there, done that. It’s a bummer to reach December 31st and realize you left your word (and, likely, dreams) in the dust. Your word of the year is meant to stick with you through thick and thin. So post it somewhere you’ll see it frequently. Paste it on your vision board. Illustrate it and frame it. Write it on your bathroom mirror with a dry-erase marker. Keep it front and center to lead the way all year long.

Last year, I chose the word SERENITY and it served me well. I wanted to point my inner compass towards feeling good in all ways – physically, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, professionally, personally – with a constant foundation of peace and calm holding me steady through it all.

Right away last January, I had to put that word to good use. Our little guy, Tru, had been sick for nearly a month and only got worse while on our trip to Texas during New Year’s week. Once we returned home, we had three days straight of doctors appointments, pharmacy runs and blood tests. While juggling that with work and other commitments, I continually asked myself, “What are the choices I need to make to achieve serenity now?”

Sometimes, the answer was about expressing gratitude for the positives – a flexible schedule, good doctors, access to medicine, the ability to afford treatment. Sometimes, it meant taking a nap or talking to a friend on the phone while Tru rested. Sometimes, it meant choosing not to stress over unreturned emails or looming deadlines. And while we waited for test results (which wound up being inconclusive and he eventually got better), it meant not freaking out over what I didn’t know or obsessing about the possibilities, but just living in the present and celebrating any sign of progress with our little guy. By leaning on my word of the year, I surrendered to serenity and felt so much better for it.

This year, I’ve chosen a word that makes me smile from ear-to-ear…

glee - word of the year

Yep, this is my year to dance with GLEE! I knew I wanted to focus on cultivating joy this year, but that particular word didn’t feel quite right. I wanted something lighter, something brighter, something unique. I flipped through the thesaurus and when I saw “glee,” it jumped out at me. And then, I looked up the definition in the Merriam-Webster dictionary.

“Exultant high-spirited joy,” it said. And I felt a shiver of truth and light buzz through me. There it is, I thought! GLEE is my word of the year. My guidepost for living, my companion in decision-making, my best bud in cultivating joy.

christine kane - word of the yearSo, what word will guide you this year? If you need a little extra guidance to choose your word, there are two FREE (also a favorite word!) resources that I highly recommend and thousands of people have used: Christine Kane offers an awesome online Word of the Year Discovery Tool  and Susannah Conway offers a five-day Find Your Word email class. Both are brilliant.

Wishing you a year that lives up to your highest expectations, dear hearts!


I set my intention. Why isn’t it working!?

3 reasons your intentions aren't working for you. Blog post from Liv Lane.

This month, my inbox has been a dreamcatcher, loaded with “holy wow!” emails from clients about dreams coming true before their eyes. New opportunities, renewed energy, amazing serendipity. So exciting!

But in addition to the dreams-coming-true emails, I’ve received plenty of why-isn’t-it-working notes, too. Not surprisingly, it’s come up in Project Light Year, where participants are looking back at past vision boards or written intentions and wondering why everything they envisioned hasn’t happened.

In all the years I’ve played with the power of intention, I’ve found three main stumbling blocks that can easily throw the best of intentions off course. Do any of these ring a bell?

1. Forgetting (or refusing) to let it go. 

An intention is like a contract with the Universe; it’s not a prayer request or a daunting goal, but an agreement to co-create a personal vision fueled by desire and divinity. I love helping clients get clear on what they really want, recognize how they want to feel as a result, describe it in a sentence (or two) that’s precise, passionate and set in the present-tense (I am vs. I will), and then let it go.

That’s right. Let. It. Go.

Those dreams-coming-true emails I’ve received lately are all from women who envisioned some kind of wonderful but managed to let go of how it would come to them. For detail-oriented planners, this feels like absolute torture – until it magically works. Rather than doing everything possible to make that vision come to fruition, from obsessing over details to networking like crazy, you leap in when synchronicities appear or when you feel motivated by faith vs. fear, inspiration over desperation.

One email I received last week came from a freelance marketer who’d had an intuitive reading with me a few weeks prior; she had been super worried about moving into the new year with no solid client leads. Drumming up business in six short weeks sounded impossible. We dug into her true desires, she allowed herself to dream bigger, and she set her sights – and intentions – on manifesting work she loves and that is good for the world. The hardest part was after we hung up.

In her recent email she wrote, “At first, I was still terrified and a bit skeptical.  Simply having faith and not placing pressure on myself to do everything possible to get new clients was going to be a HUGE stretch for me. I had to listen to your recording for several days and say some prayers that this really could be possible to enter the New Year with new projects and ones that I would feel good about. Something you said in the call really stuck with me and I found myself repeating it: ‘Expect Miracles. You can either look at the next 6 weeks as this stressful thing with a dead end or a finish line, or embrace it as an exciting adventure and one to really look forward to.’  I chose the route of faith over fear. I also did something I’ve never done: took 10 days off to celebrate Christmas and do things that I enjoy — I wasn’t consumed with ‘I need to get clients!!'”

Can you guess what happened after that restful break and brave choice to let go of the details? New clients started calling “out of the blue,” and she had the clarity and peace of mind to say YES to the ones that matched her vision, even asking for more compensation and getting it. She let go of the details, took inspired action when the situation called for it, and – in a matter of weeks – she went from an empty calendar to one that’s filled with planning star-studded events and charity fundraisers – better than she could have imagined.

2. Your timing is off. 

In addition to letting go of how goodness will transpire for you, it’s important not to dictate when. Your desired timing may not line up with divine timing. Immediate gratification is great fun, but so is having the planets align to deliver bliss at the perfect time, in the perfect place, and with the perfect people – even if it takes longer than you’d originally hoped. It’s true: good things do come to those who wait.

Though many of us create vision boards at the start of each year, it may take longer for the intentions behind the images and words to actualize in our lives. I’m blown away by some of my boards from eight or nine years ago, featuring things that are now part of my daily life that I’d all but forgotten about (the ultimate in letting go, I suppose!). Somehow, it feels more magical when something we’ve committed to co-creating appears within a desired timeline. But when it doesn’t, we have a tendency to unravel, assuming that our intention setting didn’t work. And that leads us into our third stumbling block.

3. Shifting your energy from creating to reacting. 

Notice the subtle difference in those two words – creating and reacting? Rearrange one letter and you move from the driver’s seat to the back seat. Like words are made of letters, we are all made of energy – and a little rearranging can create a seismic shift in our vibration and the messages we’re sending to the Universe. When you dare to trust in your ability to co-create something good, you raise your vibration to be in tune with all that possible. Doubt puts you out of sync with the Universe, while faith allows room for synchronicity to appear (so-called coincidences and surprise opportunities divinely choreographed to inspire your next step).

If you want to co-create an inspired and abundant life, you must stay focused on the positive vibrations of your visions. Along the way, things you don’t like might happen. You can view them as synchronistic diversions moving you closer to your intended path or lament over the stumbling blocks you assume are keeping you from bliss. In that choice, can you feel the energy shift from creation to reaction?

To jump back and forth – in a state of trust one day and tortured the next – is exhausting for you and creates strains in your collaboration with the Universe. Can you imagine working on a project with a partner who curses you for messing things up and loudly complains to his friends, only to have him show up the next day acting like everything’s fine and assuming you’ve kept everything in motion? It’s a sure-fire way to turn cooperative momentum into all-out mayhem.

So, if the dream job or the true love or the financial abundance you’ve envisioned hasn’t shown up, pay attention to the consistent vibration of your thoughts, continually working to recalibrate from desperation to inspiration. If your head space doesn’t match your heart space, expect turbulence more than miracles.

Deepak Chopra quote on intention and the higher self

Deepak Chopra says, “Intention is much more powerful when it comes from a place of contentment than if it arises from a sense of lack or need. Stay centered and refuse to be influenced by other people’s doubts or criticisms. Your higher self knows that everything is all right and will be all right, even without knowing the timing or the details of what will happen.”

Armed with these reminders, how will you clarify and create what you desire in 2015? May it be filled with magic and meaning – and plenty of positive momentum.

(Pssst! If you need some help staying inspired this year, last chance to join us for Project Light Year – registration ends this weekend!)

the private email i just sent to my tribe…

the measure of a true friend.

It’s not often I’m at a loss for words. But I’ve been sitting here for a good 30 minutes, staring at the blank page, caught up in a web of awe, rendered speechless. And a little teary. I just launched a new program – Spark*Sisters – and the reaction is blowing me away. Actually, I haven’t even had a chance to truly launch it – and already, women are lining up.

Friends, my first live event just sold out in a day. A day!? A second event has been added. And the ecourse is filling up fast.

This morning, I sent a note to my intention circle – the small group of wonder women I’ve been meeting with for years, and the inspiration for this new undertaking. And as I sit here, trying to write a blog post that encapsulates how I’m feeling, I’m having a little epiphany. I think I should just share my email to them with you. Be totally transparent, so you can see the depth of our connection, and how this all came to be. So, here it is. I’m making this private email public, for all of my sisters out there…including you.


I couldn’t wait till our next meeting to share this with you! Remember how, last year, I asked you if you’d be okay with me creating, someday, some kind of ecourse around how to build an intention circle, using our own circle as inspiration? It was only a nugget of an idea, but it kept flirting with my heart. And you said YES, of course…let it percolate. 

And then several months ago, I brought it back up and told you I wanted it to be a live event. And you said…quite resoundly…NO, not now, don’t rush in. You guys said I had too much on my plate already; I had just launched Project Light Year, was booking Firecracker Calls left and right, not to mention all the family/personal stuff begging for my attention. And because I trust you so much, and you know me so well, I didn’t even fight it. I felt a twinge of disappointment, but your advice has never led me astray. So I tucked it away for another time. 


You were so right (of course!). Right after we met, family needs escalated and I barely had time to focus on the work already in front of me. There’s no way I could have launched something new, especially my first solo event! So grateful you anticipated that and guided me to take it easy. 


Still, the idea would not let me go. I’ve frequently caught myself staring into space…planning the ecourse, envisioning the event. But instead of rushing in and launching it, I played with it. I meditated on it, connected with Spirit about it, came up with a dozen names and logos for it…but with no deadline or anything to make me stress about it. I knew it would be my next big thing, but something about it still didn’t feel quite right, so I let go of the when and how. 


And then one night, as I was having fun imagining it for the millionth time, it hit me like a lightning bolt. It felt like God organized all the moving pieces and inserted a complete vision for it in my head. It makes me cry, just writing about it, because that vision included a critical missing piece: sparks. You know how I’ve been trying to figure out a way to better incorporate my dad’s work into my work; how he wanted me to take sparks and do it “my way,” and how many conversations we had about my desire to help adults tap into the inner sparks they’d long forgotten or given up on. This crystallized vision included that – circles of women gathering to ignite their sparks, intentionally and intuitively. It gives me full-body chills, and I have felt (and heard) my dad with me so much in these final planning stages. Working together, in a new way.


Spark*Sisters - Find Your TribeSo the final result is an online intensive – Spark*Sisters. An 8 day deep-dive ecourse plus a database of participants’ locations & interests so they can find each other…find their tribes. And, as a powerful option for up to 20 women in the Twin Cities, I put together a morning event on July 19th (at the Arboretum!) where I’ll intuitively place each participant in her new tribe and they’ll begin to bond around their hopes, dreams and fears. 


Well, you guys…before I even officially launched the thing, the EVENT SOLD OUT. I simply sent two emails – one to my Project Light Year students and the other to newsletter subscribers – and women started signing up in droves for the ecourse and the event. So I’ve already added a second event, which is already selling before I’ve mentioned it anywhere! Can you believe it!? Holy wow. 


So. Sorry for rambling on, but I just wanted to share the good news and also thank you for encouraging me to wait…for the right time and for inspiration to strike. I so cherish you!




Want to find your own circle? Find details on Spark*Sisters here.

And if you’re in Minnesota, sign up for the second Spark*Sisters LIVE event over here.

the big reveal: my new dream (and how to give yours wings)

you can dream. so dream out loud. - U2

So many women I know are holding on to a deep secret, keeping quiet about something that could change the world – or, at the very least, their lives.

The secret is a dream. 

A dream of doing something more, something different, something that’s been calling their name. Is there one inside you?

Why all the secrecy? Because these dreams are mirrors to our soul. They reveal what we long for, what really matters to us. They ask us to feel worthy of them. They challenge us to follow them regardless of how the people in our lives react.

And when we say them out loud, we make them real.

They dangle in the air in front of us, clear as day. Not so easy to ignore as when they were buried inside, shrouded in doubt and fear. When we say them out loud, to real live people, those people might have questions or opinions or – gasp! – ideas to help us.

Eight years ago, I decided to be brave about revealing a dream of mine. I’d been blogging for a year about beauty in our midst. Taking pictures, writing about what I saw, feeling increasingly connected to the universe, and nervously protecting a growing longing to turn my reflections on beauty into a book. I could see it in my mind’s eye. I could feel it helping people. I could imagine it being really popular. But it felt audacious, preposterous to think I was ready for that or worthy of that. Still, that dream chased me. Kept popping up when my guard was down.

One day, I went out for coffee with Anne, a smart and spirited woman who had mutual friends with me. We talked about our backgrounds, our work. And then, like an angel in disguise, she looked at me lovingly and asked if I had any dreams she might be able to help me achieve. And that’s when I said it, just like that.

I said my dream out loud. I gave it wings. 

And do you want to know the craziest thing? She had just met with a local publisher the week before who said he was looking for the very kind of book I described to her. The universe is freaking amazing when we speak our truth, isn’t it? Anne connected us, the publisher gave me a book deal, and I relished every second we worked together on that book.

A couple of years later, two weeks before the book went to print, the publishing house closed its doors without warning. My book never saw the light of day. It was sad, of course, but I already knew deep down my dream was morphing. I already had other hopes gaining steam inside me. Experiencing the power of giving voice to that book dream gave me confidence to speak up about other fantasies for my life. And the death of that book gave me the space to launch my first ecourse. I wasn’t sure I was ready to or worthy of teaching anything to anyone, but it was another little dream that wouldn’t let me go. As soon as I said it out loud and wrote it on my blog, I set the wheels in motion. And today, I am so grateful for the brilliant women who have come together for my classes over the years. I’ve learned as much from them as they have from me, if not more.

Saying my dreams out loud – the ones that reveal who I am and what I want and ask me to stand in my own light for all to see – is still daunting. But, because my friend Andrea Schroeder asked me to share here today how I give a dream wings, I’ve decided to be brave. To tell you about a new (old) dream. To say it out loud, to release it to the universe on wings and a prayer. To set the wheels in motion. Here goes…

I’m ready (again) to write a book. A best-selling book (squeeeeeal!). A book that cracks hearts wide open to fill them with hope. A book that brings us all closer to the Great Beyond. A book you can’t put down because you hear the voice of God, the swirling universe, the dancing stars, the stirring of your soul every time you open it, leading you to your happily ever after. 

It’s a big, bold dream. Audacious, yes. Preposterous? Maybe. But possible. Totally, wonderfully possible. Because everything is. It feels awesome and awful to put it in writing, unsure if you’re rolling your eyes or clapping your hands. That’s the way it always feels, and it’s kind of exhilarating. I so hope you’ll try it, too. Your dreams are pulling at your heartstrings because they have something to say, because they need to be in the world, because they’ll help make your life feel worthwhile. Saying them out loud is like pushing them out of the nest; until you do, they have no chance to take flight. So what are you dreaming of, love? Ready, set, fly…



The Give Your Dream Wings Blog Hop is a peek inside the process of how inspiring people make the magic happen. We’ve got some of the internet’s most inspiring bloggers sharing how they give their dreams wings – what they do that supports, nurtures and encourages their tender dreams to come to life.

This is happening in celebration of the new e-course of the same name by Andrea Schroeder of the Creative Dream Incubator. The Give Your Dream Wings e-course shows you how to nurture and grow YOUR dream, for free, in only 10 minutes a day. You do not have to wait until you have more time or money!

Click here to find out about the free e-course, and to read the other (crazy inspiring!) posts in this Blog Hop.

the secret nobody knows: finding my way back to abundance

finding my way back to abundance: the secret nobody knows

My hubby bought a new jacket and matching snow pants last week, perfect for sledding with the kids. He looks like a million bucks in them, even though they only cost $18 – at the Goodwill. Oh, how we’ve changed.

A decade ago, the only reason we had to visit a Goodwill store was to donate clothes and household items we no longer needed, in hopes they might find a second home. We never imagined one day we’d need – much less choose – to shop there.

Back then, we both had full-time jobs that paid very well; we wouldn’t have batted an eye at buying Brad’s snow pants and jacket at a high-end store…at full price (a discount would have been a victory, not a necessity). We went out a lot – for dinner, to shows, to family events. We paid loads of money for our young son to attend a full-time, top-notch daycare. We finished our basement and added a bathroom in our urban bungalow. And when that house felt “too small,” we moved to the ‘burbs – into a house with plenty of space (and a great big mortgage). We said we were blessed…but I’m not sure we really knew it.

I was pretty awesome at manifesting whatever we desired: more money, great trips, new opportunities. I trusted the universe would take care of us and frequently set my intentions on creating more material goodness in our lives. It was easy to do when things felt easy.

Eventually, I longed to leave my high-stress communications career; it was wearing me out, and I wanted more time with my son. So I envisioned all I desired – flexibility, creativity, financial stability – and trusted it would come. And it did. I left the corporate world in 2007, able to make even more money doing freelance work, writing my blog and hosting a new radio show. For more than a year, all I’d envisioned came easily, but my energy was off. I had a hard time adjusting to working from home and frequently felt worried or isolated.

This is what almost no one knows: that our precious little life caved in on us. The recession hit in 2008 and I felt it big-time. Clients pulled their projects. Radio sponsorships dried up. My income dropped by 80% and, as we lived our two-income lifestyle on one income, thinking it was temporary, our savings disappeared. In the meantime, I had a baby (oh, bliss! oh, bills!). Soon after, I needed minor surgery. And then the furnace broke. And the washer/dryer. And the air conditioner. The hits just kept on coming – hits that would have been tricky to manage even with my old income. We got by on credit cards, assuming we’d bounce back to our old normal sooner than later, and that we’d be able to pay all quickly-ballooning bills with ease. But reality set in as creditors started to call; every unrecognized number on the caller ID made me sick to my stomach. I considered going back to work, but our youngest son’s mounting special needs left us perplexed and paralyzed, unsure how and where to place him all day long; the thought of it weighed heavy on our hearts.

We borrowed money. We leaned on my parents (hardest request I’ll ever make, but they were amazing). We sold books, toys, jewelry, baby clothes. One day, I pawned a ring Brad had given me years before just so I could buy groceries. I was a ball of nerves, trying to keep up appearances while feeling like a total failure. 

Saving money turned into a part-time job: clipping coupons, finding deals, shopping at secondhand stores. And you know what? I got really good at it. Getting a cart-full of groceries for $50 or a kid’s Halloween costume for a buck was an energy high. I felt good figuring out new ways to help my family and increasingly optimistic about our ability to climb out of debt. I was reminded of the buzz that comes from feeling productive, being resourceful, trusting the universe. And I made a conscious decision to follow that high.

when you focus on the sweet stuff, the sweet stuff multiplies. via livlane.com

I started focusing more on the blessings in our life (there were still so many). Instead of feeling disgruntled when Facebook friends posted pics of their tropical trips or expensive family outings, I chose to be genuinely happy for them. I sought out learning opportunities with payment plans and scholarships, determined to figure out how to turn my creativity into revenue. I started tapping into the power of intention again, envisioning our family beautifully secure and content. I fed off every moment of inspiration, every bright spot in each day. 

My small business was gradually reborn; I leveraged my marketing expertise and keen intuition to mentor women who felt clueless about marketing or intuition. I taught classes. I sold my art. I gave speeches to whomever would have me. I made mistakes and brushed myself off. Every step felt big, every sale I made felt like a miracle (still does, quite frankly).

It’s been a bumpy ride, to be sure, but so much goodness has flowed into our lives as we’ve intentionally focused on gratitude (best fear-fighter ever), cultivated positive energy, revamped our relationship with money and created new sources of income. Now, to pay for something we need or want – whether secondhand or high-end – is so much sweeter now, having known the crippling anxiety of serious debt. I still clip my coupons and get jazzed seeing the price go down at the register. We still high-five over perfectly good snow pants found at the Goodwill. And I thank my lucky stars that Brad and I grew together through this, rather than apart.

Until now, almost no one knew this chapter of our story. But over the weekend, I got choked up while finalizing a payment plan for Project Light Year in response to many women wanting to join but needing some help to do it. I realized the powerful shift from once needing such assistance to creating it for others. As I sat there, breathing that in, I realized I should tell you I’ve been thereI get itI know the shame of it and fear in it. I realized I should tell you that even though things could always be worse, they can also get so much better. I realized that should I reveal this piece of my journey, it might provide a little light for yours.

(Note: For info on the payment plan for Project Light Year, just scroll to the bottom of the info page here. I’d love for you to join us!)

here’s who i’m spending 2014 with (squeal!!!)

Christmas star ornament

Merry-making is at full tilt around here. Our boys are so excited – love watching them delight in the magic of it all! But gosh, isn’t it shocking to realize 2013 is almost over?

I love the week between Christmas and New Year’s because I intentionally review my year and plan ahead for the next one. It’s so powerful. I’m already buzzing with excitement for 2014 because, for the first time, I’m leading a YEAR-LONG program designed to help brave hearts like you soulfully create your brightest year yet – and be in community with each other, exploring and sharing and adding light to your lives. Project Light Year is going to be amazing.

Project Light Year with Liv Lane and 8 "dream team" contributorsAnd today, my heart is so incredibly full as I get to introduce you to 8 amazing contributors; a virtual dream team of teachers and visionaries, intuitively and artfully helping women create their best lives. And they can teach it because they have lived it; every single one of these women has transformed her life to do what she loves, to grow from grief and hardship, to live with great purpose. Ready to meet them? Drum roll, please…

Lori Portka: Lori is pure light; she is a brilliant artist whose vibrant paintings honor the beauty of life, cultivating “happiness through art.” Her inspiring work around the art of gratitude will play a huge role in Project Light Year; if you don’t know her yet, you will fall in love with her pronto. Promise.

Susannah Conway:  Susannah is an awesome photographer and author who’s led thousands of women around the world through her soulful online classes, dedicated to leveraging creativity and self-reflection for deep healing. Totally pinching myself over her being here.

Leigh Hopkins: After two decades of working in public education reform, Leigh realized her amazing intuitive gifts could be leveraged for another kind of reform: helping women achieve a greater sense of well-being and connection to their intuitive wisdom. As founder and director of Viva Institute, Leigh is a beacon of light for so many; can’t wait for her to help participants step deeper into their inner knowing!

Kelly Rae Roberts: If you’ve stepped into a gift shop in the last several years, chances are you’ve seen Kelly Rae’s life-affirming work, given that she’s one of the most successful licensed artists on the planet. She’s a girl with a deep, giving soul; her art shows it…but I also know it. Her being here is such a gift.

Laurel Bleadon-Maffei: If it weren’t for Laurel, Project Light Year might not even exist! During an intuitive reading with her, I received guidance to bring this idea back to life – the one I’d sketched out but put on hold. I was instantly energized to finish what I’d started – and I knew Laurel had to be part of it. The messages she receives and shares from angels and spirits are beautiful (no wonder over 60,000 people have followed her on Facebook!).

Rachel Awes: Rachel is like a walking rainbow. A gifted psychologist and soulful artist, her work lifts up people from their most vulnerable places and illuminates goodness in all of our journeys. Her words are like silk on your skin and her joy is contagious. Can’t wait for the ways in which she’ll color our year together!

Michelle Stimpson: Michelle is a one-of-a-kind life coach, guiding women through positive change for over a decade with tremendous success. I’ve never met someone with more integrity and with such passion for living life to the fullest. And the ways she manifests magic in her life is so awe-inspiring; prepare to be wowed!

Carissa Paige: I have maintained for years that Carissa is a real-life fairy, feathers and glitter tucked in her knapsack along with her paintbrushes. The way her intuition and dream life lead her through art-making and storytelling mesmerizes me, and her courageous heart inspires me. So thrilled she’ll be sprinkling her fairy dust on all of us throughout 2014!

See what I mean?? Total dream team. If you’re ready to join us for 12 months of magic-making, soul-deepening, intention-creating, spirit-guiding, purpose-finding content and connection, then click here for Project Light Year. Can’t wait to shine bright with you, all year long.

3 steps for manifesting money & magic (how i went from worried to wowed)

Money Angel - photographed in Santa Fe by Liv Lane #abundance #prosperity

Can I be real with you friends? Yesterday, I had some heart palpitations over my self-worth – the money kind and the soul kind. It did not. feel. good. 

This is usually a very busy time of year for my business and important for our family’s finances, but I’ve pulled back on almost everything to put my full attention on this. I know it’s meant-to-be and will be so, so soul-stirring. But as I looked at the numbers, tighter than usual, and started adding up some big expenses coming soon (including my sudden need for a root canal and some major home repairs), I could feel myself spiraling down.

To add fuel to the fire, my heart felt bruised by some unkind notes and actions from a few folks who don’t like that I communicate with the great beyond. (Thank you to all you dear hearts who lifted me up on Facebook yesterday!) It’s easy to feel uneasy when we feel attacked or misunderstood, right? It contributes to that crappy feeling of not having enough, not being enough, not doing enough.

I hate that feeling of lack. It makes my chest tighten, my head spin and my heart race. As soon as I feel it creeping in, I know I’ve got some work to do. Not work-work, but re-framing work; taking the time to consciously shift my thoughts from scarcity to abundance.

I knew yesterday that if I got caught up in a shitstorm of worry over money or mean girls, that negative energy could practically shut me down, blocking the flow of positive energy – contentment, prosperity, trust, service – into my life. So I put on my big girl pants and got down to business.

I followed my 3 step recipe for manifesting money & magic…


First, I got grateful. I started taking stock of all the abundance already in my midst: a home I love, a full fridge, a cell phone, a laptop, shelves full of books, transportation, healthy kids, a flexible schedule, morning coffee, art supplies, warm flannel sheets.  I could have gone on for days. I bet you could, too.

Second, I called in my angels. For me, this means getting quiet and sending out an S.O.S. (much like a prayer) to any and all available angels. I request assistance in lifting my energy and clearing the way for more light-filled abundance to flow in so I can be fully focused on using my life for good.

Now, I had an extra-special opportunity yesterday and the timing was no coincidence, I’m sure: I had a session booked with Laurel Maffei-Bleadon, a gifted healer and channeler (just like many therapists have their own therapists to help them work through personal issues, intuitives tend to lean on other trusted intuitives to deliver and validate personal messages). The messages I received through Laurel’s team of wise spirits & angels were right on the money, including a detailed description of a new online program I had been planning for January until Into the Light came along. It was their way to validate that my vibration (and ability to attract abundance) rises when I’m in the zone, creating something new and meaningful and needed. Now I’m so excited to finalize and unveil that project super soon!

Third, I talked myself into a prosperity mindset. I headed to the bank to transfer some money, and saw a coffee shop across the street. Man, a dark mocha sounded really good – but I began to feel that tightening in my chest as I tried to convince myself not to get the coffee. I wasn’t passing it up because it was a fiscally responsible choice (which would have been perfectly fine and probably smart), but because fear and lack were trying to rise up again. I looked at the situation straight on, witnessing how that scarcity mentality was so keen on convincing me I didn’t even have $4 to spare. Not true, I reminded myself. Not true in my bank account. Not true in a world where there is plenty for all. Not true for a girl who is attracting abundance. I have enough, I told myself. I am enough.  

You Are Enough card by Liv Lane

And do you know what happened, friends? I went through the coffee shop drive-thru, ordered my mocha, and when I pulled up to the window, the barista said, “Guess what!? The car in front of you just paid for you!” Oh. My. Word. My whole body filled with elation as I told her that I’ve done that so many times for other drivers, but that no one’s ever paid for me…and that this was the PERFECT day for it to happen. “Cool – it’s totally karma,” she said.

I drove away happy as a clam, so thankful for that little sign that all is well, that there is enough, that the universe is listening.

It’s listening to you, too. What are you manifesting through your thoughts and actions? I’d love to hear, brave hearts.

how to find your people (my favorite magic trick)

when you trust the right people will show up in your life, an amazing thing happens: the right people show up your life

We all know what it’s like to long for someone to show up in our life – a new friend, a new partner, a new colleague, a new client. But do you ever feel like NOT finding the perfect people has become the story of your life? You still long to find them, but suspect and expect they’ll always elude you? You’re not alone.

That’s why I love the conversation I had with my friend Jen this weekend. She’s the photographer behind most of the pictures of me on my site. And a few months ago, she left her job to focus on photography full-time. (Yay!)

Jennifer Liv Olson Photography | in her studio

Jen in her studio

When I asked if November was shaping up to be crazy-busy for her, she shrugged and nonchalantly said, “Not yet.” But this has to be a busy time, I insisted; aren’t families chomping at the bit to get holiday photos taken? Again, Jen shrugged. And then she told me this: since diving into self-employment, she’s gone into almost every month with a wide open calendar, no clients to speak of. But within the first couple of days each month, her schedule has filled up with sessions. Booked solid.

Wow. Most entrepreneurs – especially those in the early days of their full-time businesses – would FLIP OUT over that much uncertainty. They’d look at that empty schedule and wave the white flag of surrender. But not Jen. 

She trusts the people will come – and they do. 

Now, that doesn’t mean she sits around twiddling her thumbs, waiting for the phone to ring. She still promotes her biz and hones her craft, but not frantically, not from a place of desperation, not in a fit of jealousy over what other photographers are doing. Right on.

Seems like so many people are in crisis mode lately, searching frantically for the people they think they need to make their lives better. But that scarcity mentality, obsessing over what or whom we lack in our lives, only magnifies the problem and traps us in a cloudy bubble of negative energy. Whether we need a handful of new clients or one new best friend, the trick is to focus specifically and joyfully on who we do want to walk through that door, and then fully expect they will.

I actually do this every time I launch a new program. A week from today, I’ll begin a new session of The Art of Choosing Beauty. When I created this class, I carefully envisioned the type of participants I wanted to attract: women with open hearts and minds who are longing to feel consistently happy, looking for ways to stay positive, hoping for healing and a renewed sense of hope, and eager to be supportive and supported in a circle of kindred spirits. And you know what? That’s exactly who showed up for the first round and I fully trust that’s who is showing up for this next round. (Is it you?) It’ll be a smaller group this time around, but it will be the perfect group.

There are seven billion of us on this spinning planet. Your people are out there.

Yep. Your best friends, your best boss, your best therapist, your best babysitter, your best plumber, your best client, your best mentor. Get clear on what about them will fill your cup, then silently invite them into your life. When you feel like taking action (making a call, trying a new place, saying hello), ask yourself if you’re being motivated by inspiration or desperation. Inspiration feels lighter, easier, happier, doable. Desperation makes you feel heavier, anxious, stressed, doubtful. And since thoughts create things and our feelings magnify our desires, inspired action (vs. desperate action) helps us attract the right people, the best people into our lives. You might as well start planning a welcome party, time and date to be determined.

this morning’s big score: my kid just learned the power of positive thought

does the power of positive thought work?check out this sweet story about a ball, a boy and a tree.

Friends, you’ll get such a kick out of what happened here this morning!

My 10 year old, Ryder, and his neighborhood friends have loved spending time after school in the autumn sunshine, kicking and catching a football in the street. He can literally spend hours doing this (it boggles my mind!) – but they were using a busted-up football, with the stuffing coming out. So yesterday, I drove him to a sporting goods store to pick out a new football and a kickstand.

He was thrilled and played football all evening – until one of his punts veered right and catapulted that football right into an evergreen tree in our front yard. We looked and looked (and even tried to shake the tree with a rake), but we couldn’t see the football. As night fell, I told him we’d try again today.

This morning, it was all he could think about. While I made breakfast, he ran outside to look for it. No luck. He begged me to go out in my pajamas, climb a ladder with a rake, and do my best to find it. Ha! Can you imagine what a spectacle that would have been for the neighborhood?? I told him we’d try to come up with some ideas after school, which he was NOT happy about.

There was pouting. And moping. And as he put his backpack on, he grunted, “I’m never gonna find it in my whole life!”

“If you think that way, you’re probably right,” I told him. “Remember, your thoughts are powerful. Let’s trust something will work out – even if we don’t know how.”

He rolled his eyes (he’s heard this speech eight million times), gave me a half-hug and headed out the door. Not 20 seconds later, he burst right back through it, shouting with joy.

“I got it! I got it! A bird just flew into the tree and knocked it right out!”

Ha!! As he hurriedly and happily stuffed it into his backpack for recess, I pointed out what had just happened. That bird didn’t come hours later or while Ryder was inside talking to me, but at the precise moment he was walking by that tree, seconds after shifting our outlook (even if he did do it begrudgingly). It was like a little God wink – an awesome and perfectly-timed reminder to my boy that magic can happen when we trust. Sometimes, it spurs our own inspired action. And sometimes, it triggers inspired action by forces unseen and the Universe sends birds and balls and joy flying.

Another touchdown for the power of positive thought. 🙂

how to change what you don’t want

Tell me what you want....The Universe (and the #SpiceGirls) via livlane.com

The summer after I graduated from high school, I worked as a telemarketer selling water softeners. Actually, my job was to convince the people I called that if they didn’t get their water tested soon, they would regret it for the rest of their lives. Lovely. They would often agree to a free consultation, during which the “expert” would show them their terrifying test results…and then try to sell them a new water softener. I hated every second of that job, but it taught me lots about what I didn’t want out of life.

That experience came rushing back to me when Jonathan Fields posted this on his Facebook page yesterday:

“We spend so much time working out what we want. But there’s also so much power in knowing what we don’t.”

Jonathan’s right: that awareness is a powerful thing. Why? Because knowing what we don’t want helps us clarify what we do want.

During the three months I worked at that telemarketing firm, I was one of five women – all decades older than me – who sat in a tiny, windowless room, hunched over our little desks with phones and phone books (yes, children, we used phone books to find people’s numbers). The boss would collect our appointment sheets and count them out loud, so everyone knew who had booked the most appointments each day. I wasn’t sure why but I usually booked more than anyone. This routinely resulted in so many dirty looks and loud sighs from the other women that I intentionally started to work slower and sound less excited on the phone, hoping someone else would book more appointments and spare me their resentment. At break time, we’d go outside – gasping for fresh air, craving sunlight – and the four other women would huddle together six feet from the building to smoke. I, meanwhile, would walk the tree-lined neighborhood streets, thinking about how much my job sucked.

Though it wasn’t my intention, the list of grievances I was making in my head actually helped me see what I wanted out of life. As I walked those sidewalks day after day, I started to change those don’ts into desires. I imagined the opposite of those things I hated, envisioning a workplace where I felt valued, supported, and excited to be there.

Can you see how this might work in your own less-than-awesome situations? Here are some examples of how I was transforming what I didn’t want into seeing what I did want…

turn what you don't want into what you DO want, via livlane.com

If you’re in a situation with a lot of “don’t wants” attached to it, flip your view and imagine the opposite. Envisioning something better and believing it’s possible is your entry ramp to positive change.