‘not to worry because worry is useless in times like these’…an ongoing challenge for me.  

i love this song, ‘where there is a man and there is no voice, there i shall go singing’…..one of my challenges, one of many, is exerting my voice, my power, my authority in my life, my business.  i’m cool if my opinion aligns with yours, but if it differs, and if it is an important topic, i struggle.  in recent years, i’ve realized that rather than wade through the waters of holding my truth in the light, i stuff it, unless i simply can’t bear to, especially if it only affects me.  many people don’t want to hear anything except what they believe…what their perception is.  and many of those same people have such strong coping skills to put it back on whoever disagrees, to make them wrong, to make them feel awkward, you see, that is how they get you to be quiet.  and i have. been quiet.  it is part of what locks me up at times.  

the only exception i experience is when the issue relates to my children.  topics that involve the treatment, care, or parenting of my children, i have a voice, and i feel confident and (a bit more) fearless…my internal critic, the one that tells me most conflicts are because of me, he recedes and i stay present, and firm with what i want for them, what i expect, what i will and will not tolerate…end of story. there is a obvious distinction from issues that involve just me (even in business) and i observe my strength.

 a new goal is to to cultivate this strength and determination for my own life, business, relationships and encounters.

it’s not to say that i don’t feel drained from exerting my voice, because i do.  yet, if the topic is my children, i don’t reel over it, and question myself in useless detail about whether what i am asking for, or how i’m asking for it is valid.  

lil ones deserve to be protected…respected….their mind, their bodies, their souls and their spirits…THAT is one important and never wavering value i have.  

now, as a mom, i certainly have my moments when i lose my patience or overlook something and have to clean it up with AJ & G….i want to model humanity to them….to show them that big people make mistakes and it’s ok to own it, that they deserve apologies too.

for some reason, this is important for me to share here.  it’s a delicate balance having a blog that illustrates my profession, and to also share personal stuff…and yet my personal stuff is intertwined with what i do and the underlying relationships are key elements in my daily life and work.

a theme this year….my voice, my authority, my power…even writing that makes me cringe.  like, what Jana?  you think you have power?  who do you think you are?  

i have to learn to be more comfortable with using my voice.  you see, when I was in Corporate America it was easier to play that role—to enforce the policies and procedures for the companies i represented.  it’s much more difficult and emotionally dicey for me in representing my own business…not just my business, but my passion….something i put my heart and soul into.  every decision, every layout, material selection, piece of furniture, accessory, every everything that i encounter in design is important to me and taken very seriously.  

do not be mistaken though…i equally value the wants, needs, preferences, and interests of my clients.  but that is really for another post.  this is more my sharing of a personal struggle, on a variety of fronts, related to me having a voice in my life in work and in play.

so, here’s to using your voice.  i’d love to hear your experience with having a voice, in life, love, work, parenting, whatever. is this easy for you or do you struggle too?  if you do, what have you found helpful?  it truly helps me and warm my heart when you share your experience here.


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Category: Design, Her journey | 11 Comments

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This entry was posted on Thursday, July 16th, 2009 at 12:37 pm and is filed under Design, Her journey. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

11 Comments so far

  1. laurel on July 16, 2009

    So on the same path Friend. I recently posted about telling the truth your truth . I have done it wrong- too harsh in past rather than telling the truth in a way that can be understood and without making someone wrong. Make Sense? I see you as a strong woman -very strong and not one to be intimidated into shrinking away. I have been known to be (not a shock I am sure) and work on (daily) not to be the person who only wants to hear what I think as right and true. It is a struggle for this stubborn Taurean but one that I believe with prayer and contant inner nudging can change. Life has a funny way of helping us find our voice. I love what you said about the kids. It is so much easier to be fierce on their behalf isn’t it? I guess be fierce for their Mom too. Love you Friend.

  2. Rio on July 16, 2009


    I hear your voice and support you finding it in whatever you do in life. I know for myself it is an on-going process of conscious and non-conscious behavior….meaning using it (my voice) and then not using it and realizing I needed to!

    I hold the vision of you in your space and in your power with all that comes into your world; I see you as centered and whole right now and in every minute of every day. I know that as I see it, it is true and alive! I experience the beauty of your vision and your confidence in your strength.


    (loving you right where you are at today and holding vision for your tomorrow)

  3. Heather on July 16, 2009

    I loved this. I’m learning how to use my voice in more ways every day. It’s all about reaching out.

    Big hugs, my friend!

  4. javajune on July 17, 2009

    Jana, Jana my dear, I think we are two peas in a pod. I have struggled to find my voice so often and the only time it comes out loud and clear is when I am protecting my children. Being strong and voicing your opinion is so hard even when you’re right. I’ve been trying to follow my passions and bliss since leaving corp. america a year and a half ago- it’s hard to do when you’re not making any money and don’t feel validated by your efforts.

    I feel a kin-ship with you and I am so thankful to have my online friends that make me feel like I’m not alone in my own every day struggles. Today is tough for me we had a sad incident with a feral kitten in the engine of my husbands truck this morning. Since you love animals as I do, I know you will understand how I’m feeling.
    BTW I will be going to Portland on the 12th of August, wish you could be there.
    Thanks for always being there.

  5. Lucinda on July 17, 2009

    Oh how lovely, brave and authentic you are. I learned recently on my blog when I shared my self-discovery journey that people responded to it, they spoke back to me with support and seemingly genuine anticipation of how I will evolve. It’s interesting when you become personal on your blog, it breaks down a barrier showing the human side of you. Will it help business? Perhaps. I couldn’t agree more – your voice is your authority, your power and it is intertwined with your personal and professional. We become more powerful when our voice isn’t full of victim language, when our voice has confidence and intention. You are not alone my friend, as I can see I’m not the only to speak up and tell you so. It may be a daunting journey at times to find the strength to speak up, but I already know the strong, beautiful and talented Jana will command an even greater audience before too long.

    Oh… and if you haven’t been to Bel’s blog, you must visit. Her voice is rapidly shifting, you can sense her strength developing, and her light growing through her words. The Bryan Tracy CDs she’s been sharing thanks to lululemon are quite powerful. You might really get a lot out of the 2nd CD about self-concept and reaching your full potential. She shares how this is so important from a parental perspective. http://givelovegetlove.blogspot.com/2009/06/brian-tracy-cd-2.html

    Hugs to you dear friend. Your light is pulling me right along side of you.

  6. jana on July 17, 2009


    I like your take on fierce :) Yes, the balance of graceful and honest…always learning there.


    Thanks for holding that image for me…I like it and I’ll pick that one up :) you are the best and I love you dearly (but you know that).

    H, yes, it is about reaching out and opening up :)


    Oh, yes, we do have kindred paths…even after I found the career path post Corporate America, it has been up and down hill in cultivating this persona for myself :) I am appreciative of our similarities and hugs to you for your ferral—big hugs and support.


    Can I just tell you that your loveliness is amazingly appreciated. Thanks for your kind words and support. I remember our last conversation about being more soft on your blog—the balance of work and personal—:)

  7. Bel Youll on July 17, 2009

    Hi Gorgeous!,
    Thank you so much for stopping by my blog – to know that it has helped you in some way makes my heart sing. I know that everyone has their own path to travel and our journeys are different. Sometimes it takes us a lot longer to see the things in ourselves that other people see. But Jana I hope you realise just how beautiful, talented, creative and special you are. When I view your photos and blog, look at your work and read your words I am drawn into your world completely. Your spirit shines through everything you do and I admire you so much for following your heart. I have heaps more to chat to you about re your voice, but I’ve got to run to work. Will definitely be back soon though!

    Much love,

    Bel X

  8. Sylvia on July 18, 2009

    Jana! I don’t know were to start and if I will be able to finish? ;) This is the topic for a great girls night out, or maybe for the long journey in javajune’s cool blue car? I’m struggling with claiming my own voice too… There were so many changes in my life, that I’m not sure how my voice sounds right now? But if you know me as a teenager you would have only two choices – love me or hate me ;) this is how strong my voice was, and believe me there are the times when I miss it… I still find it hard sometimes to find the balance between saying your own truth without “hurting” others, or by not saying it hurting yourself…

  9. Joanne Flynn Black on July 21, 2009

    the honesty in your voice and being brave enough to write this post brings you one step closer in your journey.

  10. Natalie Martin on July 22, 2009


    Thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing your experience. As you know, I struggle with many of the same demons in life and its very hard to continue to show up on a daily basis and have the energy to keep fighting these internal voices.

    The most difficult thing for me is to continue to put myself out there and believe in myself when rejection is all around me. Staying in contact with those that support and love me and continuing to share my experience with them is the only way I get through it. Having you in my life has truly been my saving grace. I love you with all my heart and it comforts me to know that I am not alone in fighting this battle with my crazy brain.

  11. Von on July 23, 2009

    Go Jana! I am so excited for you about this growing conviction you have to silence the critic and know that who you are is someone the world badly needs to see and hear. And why not mix it up with your design?! The whole of you all in one place might be a bit scary for you but it’s such a beautiful mixture for us :) I love reading you personal journey side by side with your thoughts on style and decorating. Go you!

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