7 Reflections with the Tame Kieves, Author of This Time I Dance! Creating the Work You Love.
Summary: Even though Tama graduated from Harvard Law with honors and was working for a prestigious law firm she felt as if there was something more out there and that she wasn’t getting the fulfillment that she needed. The book that she wrote chronicles her search for fulfillment and how she found it.
I’d like to introduce you to Tama Kieves.
I’ve known Tama for some time now.
Once upon a time, I had happened upon an announcement for a workshop she was giving in my neck of the woods, and, feeling adventurous, I signed up.
I visited her Website in the mean time, and bought and read her book, This Time I Dance! Creating the Work You Love.
I’ve read it 4 times in total since I first purchased it.
I also sat down with Tama for about an hour and a half after that workshop, and we haven’t stopped talking since. My only regrets are that I didn’t ask her to sign my book for me and that I haven’t written a formal review of her book before today.
Tama knows of which she speaks. After graduating from Harvard Law with honors, she joined a corporate law firm and embarked upon a sure-to-be storied and illustrious career. She was on her way. She had an office that overlooked the mountains. She was on the partnership track. It was hers for the taking. But it didn’t work out that way.
She felt, like so many of us, stifled, stuck, cornered, and yearning for something more.
And as I’ve blogged about this week, she probably had thoughts like mine: “Be careful what you wish for.”
Here’s an excerpt from Tama’s book:
I had chosen this career out of fear, with the strange conviction that somehow if I worked in opposition to the voice of my heart, I would find security and fulfillment. I fled from rainbows in search of pots of gold. Stifling my passions, I’d hoped for strength and satisfaction. No wonder I found only despair and tiredness that seemed beyond repair.
I don’t want to give away her story, but Tama did find the fulfillment she was seeking. By taking a huge risk and letting go, her true spirit is set free. Her story and journey, and the authentic way Tama shares them, can inspire and encourage you to do the same.
Tama and I share a similar approach. We don’t much wallow around in the past. We instead figure out where we are today and focus on solutions. Another excerpt:
Okay, my newfound hopeful friend, we begin. I’m not much on small talk, because you and I have too many magnificent items to explore. So pardon me if I just plunge in and presume to know your predicament even if we’ve just met and haven’t shaken hands. And by the way, I prefer hugs.
Tama found her way, and you can too. I know because she’s been an inspiration to me.
Recommendation: Go ahead – start down that path.
Overall rating: 5 out of 5
Check out her book This Time I Dance! Creating the Work You Love.
I’ll let Tama do the rest of the talking. Here’s the conversation we had:
David: What do you love? Excites you? Passionate about? Look forward to?
Tama: I love writing. I love creative conversations, brainstorming, and co-creating healing experiences in workshops and retreats. The thing that excites me most on this planet is the power of creative inspiration. We all have so much love, power, and magnitude within us. I am always moved to tears when an artist or visionary hits their note, reaches the arc of what they came to be and demonstrates the rapture and generosity of letting go of limits and embodying freedom. I am so excited by the human spirit and the good that we can accomplish. I look forward to reaching even more people with my work and inspiring them to paint, feed the hungry, heal the broken, begin a business empire, nurture the environment or whatever their soul guides them to do. I have the gift of being able to “inspire those in power to reach for a higher power” and I look forward to enjoying the synergy of this mission.
David: If you could share anything that is uniquely you or something you genuinely believe with the world, what would it be?
Tama: I have to take a saying from my book here. It’s this: “If you’re this successful doing work you don’t love, what could you do with work you do love?” I think we’ve been taught that our love is frivolous and weak. We’ve been taught to buck up and deny what we desire. But our desires are our strengths. They’re the portals to meaning. They’re the tickets to a trip you can’t even imagine. I really want to see a change in our culture. I want to see creativity legitimized. I ignored my desire to write and became a lawyer because my family treated creativity like leprosy. It was assumed that all artists and visionaries were hippies, drug addicts, unwashed dreamers who would always be poor. I want to know what our world would be like if we worked as hard to write poetry as we do to sue people. When you follow inspiration, it’s a dynamic path. You may start off writing poetry and end up writing material that ignites thousands of others to follow their dreams. You do not know where love will lead. I want to live in a world that supports and nurtures the inspired.
David: What would you attempt to do in your life right now if you were assured there was no possible way to fail?
Tama: I’d spend more time writing and less time on the road, speaking. I am doing more of this now, but I know I’m still nervous about it. If I knew I could have help in getting THIS TIME I DANCE! Creating the Work You Love into more hands, I’d probably write my heart out, do more yoga, walk my dog more, write more and write more and write more.
David: Is there anything you’re merely tolerating or enduring in your life?
Tama: The heat in Colorado this summer! Okay, let me think about that more. I’m not fond of the word “tolerating” or “enduring.” I can’t create ideal conditions in every aspect of my life at all times. So I believe that I’m allowing some areas of my life to percolate, gestate, or evolve into a more authentic expression. For example, I don’t yet have the perfect marketing vehicles for my work. But I don’t have the push to pursue a publicist or promoter at the moment. But I believe this business development is in the works. I know passionate and excellent people will find me, because that’s what’s always happened in my business. If not, I believe I’ll have the instinct to create change when the time is right. So perhaps, my “enduring” or “tolerating” is a quiet sense of patience, a learned sense of trust, a worn blanket of faith. By the way, I’m less in touch with “enduring” anything when I’m focused on the excitement I have for the work in front of me.
David: Do you have a life’s purpose?
Tama: My purpose is to listen to, trust, and honor my Inner Voice. For me, it’s always been about learning to trust the Voice of Love inside me more than the voice of fear. While THIS TIME I DANCE! Creating the Work You Love is about launching the work you love into the world, it’s really about learning to listen to inspiration more than fear. Many of us think our fears and doubts are rational or even show “good judgment.” But that’s the voice of conditioning or “the world.” The core of you knows a more powerful reality. The heart knows a way where there is no way. This is an inspired path. It’s about going beyond what we know. It’s about discovering a love and a grace and alignment we don’t see on the media or learn about in school. Creativity has taught me to trust my instincts more than my knowledge. My walk in this lifetime is to trust my own inner voice more than anything else.
David: How do you define and create balance, happiness, and fulfillment in your life?
Tama: Since I wrote a book about “creating the work you love” and living from inspiration instead of fear, most people assume that I live “in bliss”” all the time. (First of all, there’s PMS, so bliss is out of the question!) I don’t look for bliss in all moments. I look for peace of mind. I have this huge sense of peace for which I am achingly grateful: I could die now, and I’m okay. Every time I get on an airplane to fly to a speaking engagement, I silently speak to Spirit: “Thank you for everything. It’s been a great ride. I am so grateful for this life I’m living.” I mean that. When I practiced law, I used to be terrified of dying. I felt this horrible angst that I was wasting my time and running out of it. I don’t feel that at all now. I wrote the book I dreamed of writing. I’ve gotten so much feedback from readers all over the world. This is bliss. For me, happiness is living a life in which I’m using my gifts everyday and I feel valued for my talent. I feel that the love I came here to give is being received. For me real fulfillment comes in self-expression. I don’t seek balance. I seek to listen to my inner voice.
David: Is there anything else you’d like to share with my readers?
Tama: I want each and every one of you to know that we need you: We need your gifts and your love. You don’t need to quit your job or abandon your family to follow your calling. You need to allow yourself to know, right now, that you are meant to live your dreams. Feed your desires. Take a class. Hire a coach or talk to your minister. You are the steward of outrageous power. You are designed to make a difference and we need your difference. It’s time. If you withhold your dreams from yourself, you withhold great love, exquisite music, and grace from us. We are connected. Speaking of connection, please join me and become part of our family at www.AwakeningArtistry.com and get free monthly email support or download the Free Report on “Finding Your Calling Now.” I will leave you with my love and support (please know I am always here rooting for your amazing journey) and with this quote attributed to Jesus in the Gnostics:
“If you bring forth that which is within you, that which is within you will save you.
If you do not bring forth that which is within you, that which is within you will destroy you.”
David: Thank you, Tama.
You can check out Tama at http://www.awakeningartistry.com/.