My dream is that with motherhood comes only empathy and connection, not judgment and shame. My dream is that all moms feel empowered to ask for help, receive it and realize that doing so doesn’t make them failures. My dream is that all moms realize that taking care of themselves and their needs isn’t selfish, but necessary. My dream is that all moms feel safe enough to be honest about their lives, even the scary parts. My dream is that all moms have access to affordable care for mental health issues such as postpartum depression and anxiety. My dream is that no mom ever feels alone as she struggles. My dream is that all moms recognize motherhood is not one-size-fits-all and no two journeys are the same. My dream is that all moms support each other’s choices and embrace each other’s differenes. My dream is that all moms lift one another up because they understand that we are all in this together.
Meet Tammi Leader Fuller, Founder and CEO (Chief Empowerment Officer) of Campowerment, and the woman, who, I swear, changed my life in just 72 hours. She would argue that she just built the (Campowerment) door and I walked through it, but even when I walked out the door back to my everyday reality, she still had and continues to have my back. I just got back from my second Campowerment retreat and I am going back for more in November. What can I say…I’m addicted. Trust me when I say you will be too! Read on as Tammi talks Campowerment, starting over, and why every woman needs this magical weekend in their lives.
A guilt-ridden, stressed out single mom, wondering when and why I signed up for this insane web of a life I had spun for myself.
The Beginnings of Campowerment
I am who I am today because of summer camp, my happy place. In my twenties, after I outgrew childhood camp, I became a Club Med counselor (a G.O.) for grown ups, probably because I am obsessed with the concept of playtime and the joy it brings to life. I think I became a TV Producer because I was a spirited camp girl (truth: I majored in Journalism cuz there was no school on Fridays!), and meeting interesting people and telling their stories was a very cool way to make a living.
I wasn’t going to write about my weekend at Campowerment this time around. Not because I didn’t have another magical, transformative weekend with the most unbelievable women, but because I want you to hear about the Campowerment movement and why every woman needs some camp in her life, from the founder herself. On Friday I will be posting a Q&A with the rockstar behind camp, Tammi Leader Fuller. You do not want to miss it!
But I have to write about something that happened to me on the last day of camp, just minutes before I got in the van and headed to Newark airport to return home to my real life. We rarely ever know what kind of impact we make on another person and it’s not something we tend to think about. Of course we think about how others touched our lives, but what if you could take a moment to hear from others about the effect you had on them? At the end of camp, you are given this opportunity, but I won’t spoil the details of how, in case you decide to go experience it for yourself. And you should definitely go experience it for yourself.
During my moment, another camper, a woman who I swear is my soul sister and someone I have known my whole life (I’ve literally now known her for less than a week) told me that I make her want to be a mom, something she really hasn’t felt strongly about ever. Cue tears and all the feels. Let me repeat that. I make her want to be a mom. This woman right here—this mommy—your medicated mommy wants to make someone else be a mom. I consider myself to be a pretty confident woman (thank you Campowerment-the first time around), but me? Make someone else want to be a mom? Really? Why?
How Clarity Leads to Having the Life You Want
Lily Tomlin said, “I always wanted to be somebody, but now I realize I should have been more specific.” Lily was of course being funny. But, she’s right.
I’m often asked by women, “How do I get from where and who I am, to where and whom I really want to be?” My first reply is to ask them what they truly want. Many, many times they don’t really know. All they know for certain is they want something else, something more, something true and purpose-filled. Coming up with a concise true response to that question (what do you really want?) seems simple until someone asks you, or until you ask yourself. Try it.
Here’s what I know. Having a true and clear answer is very empowering. It’s the beginning of everything. The greatest starting point in living an empowered life is having clarity around what you want. Your ability to develop a clear and detailed picture of what you want is paramount in embarking on the journey to getting there and creating the life you want.
It’s All About Your Attitude
Yes Ladies, attitude is everything! You’ve likely have heard the phrase “fake it till you make it,” and yes, at times it can be a good strategy in business or the start of a great marketing campaign while you’re building and establishing your brand. However, “faking it” is not the greatest idea when it comes to your own personal attitudes. Just the opposite, authenticity, is the foundation for an effective attitude.
Your attitude about your life determines the quality of it. That is a fact.
Numerous health psychology studies show that the quality of life is very often the result of one’s attitude. It’s been six decades since social psychologist Gordon Allport broke ground by saying that attitudes are “probably the most distinctive and indispensable concept in contemporary social psychology.”
Yes, they are that important!
Allport described attitude and change in attitude as a cognitive process. The way I see it, this simply means you are in control of your attitudes; they don’t control you. Knowing this is very empowering.