This week was crazy, stressful, exhilarating and exhausting. But, what I learned this week is to appreciate the ups and downs of our lives. Everything is changing and nothing stays the same. Sometimes we are up, and sometimes we are down. I can promise you that you won’t be there forever. In our society, we want to stay on those high moments of life and want to run away from the challenging moments.

I’m not sure where you’re at in your life and what you’re going through. I do know this: hiding is not the solution. What you resist will only persist.  In order to break through to living a whole life, you must go inward and face fear and uncertainty with courage, gratitude, and grace.

 1.     Growth begins at the end of your comfort zone

So many times we avoid feelings and situations that make us uncomfortable. We hate change. When we are faced with feelings of fear or uncertainty, we tend to push them down, avoid dealing with them or disassociate from them. But when you can face your feelings and challenges head on, you will have a breakthrough and grow.

It’s kind of like getting in shape and working out. We have to break out of our comfort zone, stress the muscle in order for it to grow. I mean, I would love to sit on the couch all day eating bagel bites and watching re-runs of Sex & The City, but this unfortunately, would not grow my muscles. It would only grow my belly! So, you must get out of our comfort zone if you want to get to your goal. Usually, when we get to a place where we feel stuck, this is an opportunity to grow.

 2.    Do the work

We tend to look outside ourselves for the remedy to our problems: a drug, a drink, a friend, exercise, food, or sex (or all of that). All you need is to find your own light within you. It is your soul that wants you to shine. In order for you to face your fears, you must dig deep into your soul, do the work, and peel back the false layers that are hiding your true essence.  Your soul’s dream is for you to truly know and love yourself unconditionally.

For example, how many times have you said, “I’m fine” when asked how you are doing. Usually, being general about our feelings allows us to cover them up and hide them. What would happen if you were to honestly express your feelings to someone who has earned your trust? By leaning into your discomfort and expressing (not repressing) your feelings, you will have a breakthrough and move to a deeper place in your relationship. This is not easy. This is the work.

Take each moment and be present with it so you can fully experience it. There is a brief gap between the stimulus and your reaction, and that is the sweet-spot in which your power resides.  In this space you can be powerfully mindful and choose your next thought, action and emotions.

 3.    Be patient and gentle with yourself

Be gentle with yourself and love yourself throughout your journey. Change is not easy. Growth takes time. Stay present, and notice when you start to play the victim role or begin to feel negative emotions such as fear, anger or jealousy. Remember, you have the power to choose to not feed those negative energies.  Move from a place of fear to a place of love. Fear Diminishes and Love transforms. So be patient and gentle on yourself when things don’t work out. Love yourself throughout this process.

 4.    Trust

Have the confidence to be open, vulnerable and keep going, even when things don’t work out as you had planned.  Don’t be afraid to start over. Your path may change.  Let go of the outcome.  Detach from the result.  There is no “failure” if you have gained knowledge. Some times things may not work out the way you had planned, but they always work out as they should.

With conscious grace and compassion, you are on a journey to reclaiming your personal power.  When you really desire something, have faith in yourself and continue to try, the entire Universe will conspire to help you realize your dreams.  Discover the beauty of uncertainty, and trust that the Universe to support you.

Fear knocked at the door, courage answered, and no one was there.

5.    Gratitude

Practicing gratitude and compassion is an essential part of your journey.   When gratitude is present, there is no room for anger, resentment or guilt.  Awaken to the brilliance in ordinary moments. Be grateful for all of your efforts and know that you are enough.  As you work on your transformation, my wish is for you to celebrate all of your gifts, know and love yourself wholly, and unearth your true purpose in life.

Change can be scary.  It can be frightening to not know exactly where you are going, but you have a choice to remain stuck in the dark, or you can dig deep and find the courage to step out into the sunlight and discover the amazing journey that lies ahead for you.  All we can do is ride the waves of life with grace and gratitude.

Look to yourself for the answers.  Experience life and shine bright. Wake up every day to embrace the miracle of your life. Open yourself to the possibilities. It is a beautiful thing to be authentic and free.  You deserve to live the life of your dreams.  Own your reality without apology. Radiate your true essence and beauty. Dream big. Live big. You are worthy if having it all.  Be grateful.  Be whole.  Be bold.  Be gloriously free. Be you.

Audrey Sutton is the author of The Blissful Bitch, due in March 2014, and the founder and bliss coach at