New Home Forums Philosophy, Mindset & Preparation My Accountability Letter

8 replies, 6 voices Last updated by  Andy Freist 6 years, 2 months ago
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    Deanna Gibbons

    Holy wow! This took some serious soul searching and I realized a few truths about myself that I have never admitted to myself before. #4 was gut wrenching and made me cry. A lot. Bradley and Andy, you will never know how this little exercise has changed my perspective. It was difficult to come to terms with some of this, but I also feel so much more light and airy. So here goes: (oh and if this seems a bit harsh, it’s because that is what I needed.)


    Dear Deanna,

    Listen up, lady! You need to stop making excuses and just do what needs to be done. You have been procrastinating and making excuses for far too long. From this point forward, your excuses have no more power. Here are your excuses and what you need to remember to push past them and the fear and move forward to an extraordinary life:

    1.       The excuse of “I don’t have enough time” just isn’t going to cut it. You have time. You even scheduled your course work into your planner. But instead of doing the work, you are telling yourself some of the lies below and being lazy. If you actually work the 8-10 hours scheduled, you will easily get your course finished by your October 3rd deadline. The next time you are scheduled to work on your course, do it.  Just work for 15 minutes. You know that once you get going, it will be hard to stop and you will feel so amazing when you get 2-3 hours of solid work completed!

    2.       Oh? You don’t “feel like” working? Suck it up, buttercup! No one feels like working. But this isn’t real work. It’s your passion. Your dream. It’s soul nourishment! You want to change the lives of teens. You want to accomplish great things and be a role model. You want to make a difference in the world just like you are preaching to these kids but how are you going to do that if you don’t “feel like it?” These kids are counting on you. You know that you have to Turn Pro just like Stephen Pressfield says.

    3.       You think you don’t have support. That’s all the bullshit you make up in your head to avoid doing the hard work, the scary work. Your kids tell you all the time to put yourself first. Your husband says he will support you no matter what and he always has in the 21 years you’ve been married. This is not a valid excuse.

    4.       My family will suffer if I am not focused on them all the time. This is the most ridiculous lie you tell yourself. Don’t be a martyr. You play it off by saying things like  “But I am doing it for them.” But really you are a control freak. HA! Your family would probably love it if you backed off a bit.  You know what? They are growing and leaving the nest one at a time. It hurts to know you aren’t needed as much, but that just means you are moving into a different time in your life. Anyway, you are around now even when you are working on your course IF they need anything, which they won’t because none of them are little anymore and are quite capable of taking care of themselves (and Dad is available if they need help). Put a sign on your door that says do not disturb and get to work. I promise, the family will not fall apart without you for a couple of hours.

    5.       No degree ≠ dumb. Just because you don’t have a piece of paper from a college, it doesn’t mean you don’t know what you are doing. It doesn’t mean people won’t take you seriously. You have taken more online courses and training than any person probably ever. You have started several business in the last 15 years. You are intelligent and people will see that. You have many qualities that make you the PERFECT person to teach this course. I think you should make up your own college degree for the school of life and hang it on your office wall.

    You can do this!

    You were born to do this!

    Don’t stop.


    Lorraine Watson


    Nailed it.

    For me too. Thank you.


    Sharyn Warren

    You may be the spokesperson for many people on this course. You know what I discovered? I was spending almost every waking moment–and some sleepless nights–THINKING about this course and calling it “working on it.” I would start something and then work for hours, and actually have nothing to show for it. Day after day after day.

    I’m pretty self aware, but our blind spots are our blind spots. Some things–like my chin, or ears or back of my head I just can’t see and have to have a tool or assistance. Brad and Andy’s coaching helped a lot. But I also did some things that fit my make-up–like checking out the local shaman and practicing a new meditation with spirit guides–or my subconscious. Doesn’t matter. I made a small alter in my office and changed my daily ritual to offering a gift every day to my helpers. And to my own brave spirit. I started going for some body work and energy healing. Got back into regular taijichan practice.

    And one of the biggest things that has helped is a little course on shadow work that I stumbled upon. The woman that created the e-course has a motto: “Having is evidence of wanting.” This is the first time I have been encouraged to come at my procrastination, confusion, ceaseless spinning and not going anywhere from a place of love. Meaning to consider that I actually LOVE procrastinating, being confused, not getting anywhere in this e-course creation or biz development. Why? Because it kept me invisible. Protected me from things I really fear. And saved me from being a really big failure, meaning, if I give this everything I have in my heart and mind to give and nobody wants my stuff, or thinks it (me) is stupid, then how could I have wasted my life and subjected myself to that? So OBSCURITY created by all those things I mentioned up there–attitudes, non-aligned actions, and in-action–have all served to protect me from deep, deep seated fears.

    The advice in the Shadow Work course–embrace your Shadow. Love the hell out of it. Not in a mushy, gushy way, but in a powerful, “get off on it”, outrageous sort of way. When you spoke of “lightness”, that is exactly what is happening. Freedom. Not just self acceptance. But damn fine self-appreciation for some “darker” spirit within that has been working like hell to save me from bad things.

    The hitch, of course, is that all of those bad things are imaginary. And not what I want to guide my life. That is not my path. Fear probably isn’t your path either, but it sure can illuminate our surroundings and make scary monsters out of bedposts. At least that has been true for me.

    I don’t know if it will help or not, but I share this with you because, personally, I was able to get only so far with the “kill the Shadow!” approach. Beating it–i.e., ME!–to death really wasn’t getting me out of the darkness. Brad and Andy saw that I was trying to make myself do some things that I really don’t want to do. Or at least in a way that really isn’t right for me. Shifting towards what is more natural (but maybe still challenging) and honoring of my way of enjoying and creating, etc. was their message and has been spot on. Energy and inspiration and will power gates opened back up. Clarity too! Working with my Shadow from a “hell YES!” attitude instead of “man up and defeat that bitch” has been hugely liberating and empowering. Who knew?

    As for those degrees? I have several, plus tons of certifications, memberships, licenses–all sorts of external permission. I tossed them all! 40 years of accumulation. At the end of the day, nobody cares. They want to know if what I have to offer will help. Years ago I defied conventional, professionally approved interventions to have a sort of visual pt done with my daughter who had a fairly severe learning disability. It made all the difference in the world for her. It didn’t matter that when I told other professionals about it, including her treatment team and my own professional colleagues, that they scoffed, were critical and dismissive. It helped her. And I passed on our experiences to other mother’s dealing with a similar issue and they were helped too.

    The world is changing. And we are on the leading edge. And the old guard isn’t going to just hand over the keys to the castle. It will be up to you to say “Hey, check this out, try this, see if it works for you. I’ll help you do that.” And let your message be the Lighthouse that beckons the folks who are having been looking for what you have to offer. Who, not only don’t care about those official degrees, but might also actively distrust the old guard. They know that bravery, and love and a new view of what is possible is exactly what they need. As well as the process that you offer from a very practical and loving perspective.

    Sorry this is so long. But your bravery in sharing, the fact that you, too, just can’t let it go despite that Something in you that has been putting up impressive resistance–these things spoke deeply to me. There is no doubt in my mind that you will find plenty of occasions to call up that will power and determination that we all must use to get through certain places. But it seems to me that just as passionately loving the wisdom in us that Resists taking action that is not aligned with our Unique Design is important too. That’s the feminine talking now. And I believe the Feminine is Rising. And only when we honor ALL of who we are will we be able to accomplish ALL of what we are capable of.

    Oh there I go again. Go for it, Deanna. And thanks again for your sharing your Truth.

    I’m telling you, you’ve got this!!!!!!


    Deanna Gibbons

    Thank you Sharyn for taking the time to write your post.

    I think that I am also very self aware. Unfortunately, knowing yourself doesn’t always lead to making changes. Sometimes we tend to stay stuck in the “that’s just how I am” mode of thinking, which is where I have been the last few years. Just from the exercises on the mountain, I’m really bringing up a lot of my “stuff” for lack of a better word. It’s been an emotional and mental journey to this point as much as it has been physically getting my course out into the world, maybe more so. Thankfully I tend to dive head first into stuff and this mental work has been no different, just much harder to wade through.

    It’s funny you talk about my “Kill the Shadow!” approach. I tend to be very self critical and very ambitious, which can be a brutal combination. I’ve been told numerous times, by people that love me, that I need to be nicer to myself, learn to love myself instead of being so hard on myself. I just don’t know how.  LOL It’s okay, we are works in progress and I will get there, of that I have no doubt.

    I love how Andy & Bradley really saw you so clearly. I like the idea of  “shifting towards what is more natural (but maybe still challenging) and honoring of my way of enjoying and creating”.  I need to figure out what those things are for me.  Rather, I think I know, I just have to figure out how to incorporate those things (music and design).

    I really appreciate your input. Every time you respond to my posts that deal with my inner workings, I feel like I advance in my knowledge and power. I have never been much of a woo-woo type of person but have been reading up on some areas that are new to me. Chakras, meditation, visualization, crystal healing etc. You know, the “new age” stuff, and am intrigued. I wonder how I can use this new knowledge to work on the shadow. Maybe trying something new is what I need. And I would love to hear more about this Shadow Work course.


    Bradley Morris
    Mountain Guide

    Holy wow, potent sharing happening here.

    First off: way to freaking call it out Deanna. Way to see the pattern, hear the stories and take a stand for yourself and what you’re here to do. YOu’re spot on with all your offerings.

    On the credential side of things: I had zero training when getting into guiding and teaching meditation. Nobody gave me permission. I had lots of experience practicing, that practice changed my life and I was passionate about sharing my discoveries. That led me to facilitate more than 500 workshops and make courses that have spanned 40+ countries. Not once has somebody asked me where my credentials were.

    You know what your kids are gonna be stoked for? To see there mom freaking lit up, on fire, passionate and doing what makes her come alive. I think it’s all we ever really want for our parents and here you are with the prime opportunity to be the perfect example of what that looks like.

    Thank you Sharyn for jumping in and sharing your stories too. Shadow work is powerful stuff. We’ve all got a lil darkness in the background that plays a part in our actions and stories. Way to face it, love it and move through it.

    So inspired by this community.

    I imagine you’re feeling more powerful than ever after writing your contract Deanna. May wanna print this out and sign it, then post it somewhere nearby your work zone.   😉


    Deanna Gibbons

    I realized I read your comment @bradleytmorris and never responded.

    You are right that my kids will be so happy to see me doing something that I love and am passionate about. I sometimes get so involved in making their scouting experience just right that I forget they are MY kids and that I need to be a good role model as a parent too.



    Stefan Morales

    Way to go Deanna! This is a great letter!


    Deanna Gibbons

    Thanks Stefan.  It was painful to write. But also cathartic.


    Andy Freist
    Mountain Guide

    Holy wow is right!!!

    Reading this just brought a big smile to my face.

    Bravo for your bravery and willingness to do the work. And as we both know, “the work” goes far beyond marketing strategies and product creation 😉

    Keep it up! You’re on fire Deanna!

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