I want to tell you a story I’ve repeated so often lately, it occurs to me that it might be something you need to hear.

Even if you’ve heard it before, I’m guessing you need to hear it again.

It’s about knowing when to withdraw from giving, when it’s time to rest and receive.

Several years ago, I visited, the dancer, healer, and teacher, Karuna Haber, in her studio. We were just getting to know one another, and she had generously offered her studio for a writing retreat.

I walked into the room, and fell in love with its gleaming hardwood floors and wide wrap-around windows.

Scanning the studio, I noticed a beaded mat in the corner and instinctively walked over and lay down.

“Can we meet over here?” I asked.

In retrospect, it wasn’t the most professional way to conduct a meeting, but I felt immediately at home with Karuna.

She sat down beside me and told me that the mat heated contained crystals. It felt like heaven to my weary body.

We went over the event I was planning, what equipment she owned and what I’d need to bring. About midway through our conversation, she stopped nme.

“I sense that you’re giving out more than you are receiving.” she said, “You’re not keeping anything for yourself.”

You know that feeling when someone has articulated exactly what you’re sensing but haven’t been able to articulate?


That’s exactly what my students and clients experience whenever I tell this story. Heads nod in deep recognition.

Many of students are women caring for husbands, teachers trying to hold the attention of young students over Zoom, or healers being called upon to do their work over the ethers of the Internet.

But the truth is, if all you are doing is staying home and social distancing, you’re holding the whole worldAnd it’s exhausting.

I told this story a few weeks ago because I felt I was at the edge of what I was willing to give away.  I had come to the conclusion that I needed to step back practice group to once a week and limit how long I would offer free coaching with The Heroine’s Journey.

I told people this, not to create marketing urgency around The Heroine’s Journey–get it now because it’s going to go away soon — but for the sake of transparency and healthy modeling.

When you feel at the edge of what you can give away,  I want you stop and listen.


Karuna said something else that day that has stuck with me all these years.

“This is a healing space,” she said. “While you are here, let the studio hold and support you even as you are teaching.”


Since that conversation, I’ve sought space to write and teach where I felt supported, places of intention and healing.

In the time of quarantine, we can’t gather at my favorite retreat centers, although I do have the lovely space of my home studio where I set up my Zoom meetings.

Beyond that, I have you, the writers who show up and give me a reason to bathe, dress, and even put on a little makeup.

But what truly feeds me are your hearts and minds, your willingness to be vulnerable, your willingness to show up and receive.

We continue meeting on Sunday afternoons through May to sit and write together.

Are you ready to receive? Will you join us? Details in my weekly newsletter. Sign up here: https://saundragoldman.com/

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