The Real Story Behind TalkToTree
Welcome to the first edition of TalktoTree.
If you don’t like the name, it’s okay.
I get it.
But there’s a story behind it you may find interesting.
It begins with one of those Fairy Godmother moments of possibility—a turn of events that allowed me to quit my job so I could write a book based on my childhood.
One swish of the magic wand and PING! Suddenly I had the freedom to write, a supportive network of writers, and the encouragement of all my family and friends.
It was a dream-come-true.
Because I’ve been wanting this writing thing for most of my life.
And maybe you know what that’s like.
Maybe you were born with something beautiful embedded inside you too—something that will shatter your heart if you can’t find a way to express it.
And if you’ve been able to sing your song, (or paint it, or dance it, or translate it into a video game) then GOD BLESS YOU.
But if you haven’t, keep reading.
Because as much as I love writing, I hate it.
I’ve spent two-thirds of my life trying to wrestle my story onto the page—scribbling bits and pieces onto napkins and note pads, typing for weeks at a time, staring into the dead eye of a computer, trying to get this “thing” out of me.
And I’ve always failed.
Then PING! Circumstances arranged themselves and gave me an opportunity of a lifetime. I sold my home, quit my job, moved in with my sweetheart, and sat down to write.
At first, it was heaven.
And then, it wasn’t.
Suddenly, it felt like I was being stretched out on a torture rack.
Because after six months of research and writing, I had chapters and chapters of nothing.
So I worked harder, trying to spin straw into gold.
And the harder I worked, the more my anxiety grew.
The hard truth is, when you write for all the wrong reasons it jams you up. It drains the joy out of your work until all you have left on the page is a hard lump of fear.
My anxiety was just trying to point out the obvious.
“You're listening to the wrong voice!”
So I shut off the computer and tried something different—a technique I learned in The Four Day Win by Martha Beck.
I picked up a pen and wrote a question using my right, dominant hand.
What’s wrong? I asked.
Then I switched the pen to my non-dominant hand, as Martha suggests, and answered in large, child-like handwriting.
“DON’T FEEL SAFE.”
“Why? Why don’t you feel safe?”
“LIFE OR DEATH. NOT FUN”
I felt a jolt.
It was true. I was trying to produce a literary masterpiece, while my inner critic drove me forward with a whip.
It was anything BUT fun.
So I wrote out another question.
What do you want?
And the answer came quickly.
“I WANT TO TALK TO TREE.”
I put the pen down and sat very still. I recognized the voice of my five-year-old self—the girl who loved being in nature, the girl who used to communicate with something beautiful that couldn’t be seen.
This was the voice of the REAL me, the essential me who knew how to be happy.
I stood up and put on my shoes, because three things had to happen immediately.
I needed to get outside.
I needed to breathe.
And I needed to be by trees, so I could hear my own inner wisdom.
Because the voice of the soul doesn't use words. It’s touches you with a stillness—an inner knowing that’s usually drowned out by the mind.
My soul didn't care about getting published. Or making a name for myself. Or proving my worth to others.
As I walked, I began to admit that I never wanted to write to please anyone else, and when I got home, I packed up my manuscript and let it go.
Then I opened my heart to what REALLY wanted to happen.
And a new life started emerging around me.
Suddenly, I was meeting Martha Beck in person.
Suddenly I was becoming one of her certified coaches.
Suddenly I was starting a business helping women follow their own essential selves.
PING! PING! PING!
When I allowed my life to be what it wanted to be, it all became simple.
Not necessarily easy, but clear and clean and authentic.
And that “thing” I’ve been trying to dig out of me?
Well, it just started bubbling out on it’s own.
So let me ask you. What deep desire have you been trying to force into place? What dream are you trying to arm-twist into reality?
Whatever it is, I hope you’ll consider this:
The gifts you’re meant to share with the world don’t come from your head.
They come from your heart.
And if you haven’t been able to express them in a way that feels good, then you’re trying too hard.
You were born with an essential brilliance that wants to be heard. An acorn, planted inside you before birth.
And all the information of your true purpose is in that original seed.
It knows what to do! But you'll have to stop struggling and listen.
Maybe, like me, you just need to go talk to tree.
Sending you so much love,