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6 Steps to Reinvention.

Hey there,

I am the middle of an overhaul.
An oil change.*
A reinvention.
Necessity, she is my mother.

My girl is in 11th grade, and she doesn’t need me in the same ways she used to. We are actually going on our first college tour next weekend.
I have separated my home and office for the first time, and I am cultivating new friendships and rituals. Sally and I now do a workout and steam every Friday morning. Yes, I make time for that.
I am finding a deeper, purer, truer voice in this next book I am writing. Even more exposed, more true to my calling, more me.

And with this reinvention, I am finding that I can lose my sense of groundedness.
I am flying with enthusiasm one minute, and wobbly as un-jelled jello the next.

I know you know the feeling. How do I know?

You are a woman. We reinvent continually. Cyclically. Every month, shedding the old, welcoming the new.
Different from men.
That is our nature and our obligation.

Reinvention does not mean what you had was bad. That’s the mistaken thinking of the patriarchy. Reinvention means that we are paying attention and we are continually crafting our lives to be even better for ourselves. And when a woman pays attention and makes it better for herself, she makes it better for everyone in her world.

Reinvention is a topic that is current for every single woman on this planet right now.

Whether you’re reinventing yourself
… after a relationship,
… after a divorce,
… after losing a job,
… or maybe you just want to expand and have an even more amazing job,
… maybe you are a mother and you are re-entering the workforce,
… maybe you want to be a mother,
there’s reinvention all over town.

So, today, I want to give you a few pointers on the path of reinvention and get you started towards the incredible feeling of being the powerful source of creating whatever you want to create with your life.

Because, you know, you can do that.
You are capable of creating your destiny.
I believe in you, utterly and completely.

And so, here they are, my six steps to assist you on your journey to reinvention:

Step 1: Reinvention is always initiated by unhappiness of some sort.

Locate your despair and use this womantra, “I am a sexy, hot genius for creating ___.” Blank could be “the end of my marriage,” or “getting laid off,” or whatever that is for you. And you want to celebrate anything that’s making you miserable right now.

Step 2: Create a desire list.

Give yourself time to invent and imagine that life that you want to be leading.

Step 3: Tell everyone your desires! 

Turn on your listener with your enthusiasm and believe in yourself.

Step 4: Play dress up.

Dress up as whatever you want to reinvent yourself to become. So just like when you were a little girl, do it right now. You may even have to go shopping, but it’s worth it. You become what you can imagine.

Step 5: Lunge at anything that has even the smallest tug of interest to you.

This is really where you get to pay attention to your pleasure. You have to lunge with your whole heart and soul. Don’t be afraid to move blindly towards the light. Be willing to experiment in a new direction. For example, you suddenly decide, “Oh, you know what? I’ve been wanting to take that dance class,” or “I’ve been wanting to take that cooking class.” It’s going to lead to somewhere fabulous. Follow that divine instinct that’s yours.

Step 6: Finally, each day, be willing to use the tools of bragging, gratitude, and desire.

These three are the holy trinity, and these practices will give you much more clarity about what you want and really assist you in creating the incredible “What’s next?!” that you are about to step into.

Come reinvent with me. Leave a comment below and let me know how it’s going!

*Can you tell I have been on a couple of dates with a Nascar driver? Psst, fasten your seatbelts if you are Miami-bound with me this November – we are planning a killer entrance for The Immersion . . .

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39 Comments / Leave a Comment

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  • cialas January 22, 2017, 3:23 pm

    Doesn’t sound like you had a terrific Disney Day. I can’t get wrapped up in the concept of Theme Parks – but I am the odd one in my family.Keep up the crochet. It is way faster than knitting, especially pot holders.

  • SG C'mere Kitty November 26, 2014, 4:11 pm

    I am in layers of reinvention, and I desire to enjoy the duck out of it. I’m reinventing after a 15 month relationship that turned abusive, after a 12 year relationship and a divorce, after losing a job of 6 years, after deciding to leave the industry I worked in for over a decade, after depression and bouncing/wobbling back, after solving a diagnostic mystery that had me go from one doctor to another until we found clarity, and after deciding to be single for the first time since I was in college!! So much reinvention happening that I am a sexy hot genius for all this happening right now. QUESTION TO MAMA, what do I do if financial strain is throwing wrenches and hitting breaks each time on step 4 and 5? I have sime creative ideas, but I wanted more juice on that. Thank you!!

  • SG Marjory Wood Hot Gma October 16, 2014, 9:52 am

    Mama Gena, Thank You! Reinventing is so exhilarating especially for me as I embrace it, once again. The steps you laid out are now my framework to true myself up as I reinvent. I am 66 and this is not my first experience 😉 of reinvention. I know/feel that I’ve been reinventing myself all through my life experiences of a divorce, children transitioning into adulthood, sadness and grief of loosing loved ones, becoming single and taking time for me to “revirginate” (my term for extreme self-care no men involved), working in a man’s world of corporate america, learning things I didn’t want to know about how addiction can disrupt and destroy lives of loved ones, how to open my heart to the possibility of love and relationship and marry again, reinvent my life after a traumatic brain injury that ended my career in academia (the one I believed I would retire from), reinvent the concept of being a Gma, reinventing my family by accepting three grandchildren to raise with my husband because of their parents illness and inability, return and reinvent my love of fitness and being a runner (I placed second in my age group this past weekend as I competed in a 1/2 marathon)…So, thank you Mama Gena for turning the light on for me to see what a “sexy hot genius I am for creating a life of reinvention”. I have felt stuck as I am navigating boot camp – and then you posted this and I found a way to start sorting. I live in an amazingly beautiful area in the North Woods of Minnesota where mother nature nurtures and inspires me everyday. I just have to remember to open up before I dive into my work of getting the youngsters to school etc. etc. etc. I am a writer and an artist (a silver lining after my accident is that I can now pursue my creativity) and I desire to start a Center that will provide “Nature Nurture” for all who come. I am grateful, so very grateful that I have returned to health and that I am a runner, I brag that I am a hot Gma who is enjoying life.

    Deep appreciation for you Mama Gena and the Spirit of Hope and the Witnessing of the Greatness of Women. SG Marjory Hot Gma

  • Sasha Stone October 16, 2014, 1:28 am

    Brilliant Mama Gena! I too am in major reinvention mode. My favorite is tip #1!! I love that I am the genius that created the exact situation that is firing me up and allowing me to be insanely brave, radically bold, and a master manifestress!!

  • SG Pussycat Coltrane October 8, 2014, 6:04 pm

    I love the wisdom of Mama Gena!

    I used to feel like “changing” was such a bad thing. How could one be real and authentic if in constant flux. I used to (sadly) judge women who weren’t consistent, until my consistency turned into staleness, then turned into stuck. I bored myself (almost) to death!

    Reinvention is my new black, I wear it all the time! It means expansion, and THANK GODDESS I have changed for the better, even if it doesn’t seem like it sometimes. I amuse myself with my new found potential, and I love every second of it!

    Thank you Mama Gena!!

  • Alay'nya October 8, 2014, 1:43 pm

    Such a fabulous post, and I loved reading all the comments – so many of us are going through HUGE life-transformations/re-inventions, and we can often feel lost during this process … loved how many women shared such specific life-stories, was tremendously heart-warmed and encouraged …

    I am re-embracing my scientific roots – ones that require real rigor; I’m reading sci-tech papers that have long (scary) equations, working to come up to speed in an area that has been my true-heart’s-calling for 30 years.

    Your suggestion, Mama G., of having each of us say that “I am a hot, sexy genius for creating …” – even when that something that we’re creating / have created seems like a disaster – God(dess), I love this, will use it frequently in days to come!

  • SG Jules October 8, 2014, 12:00 am

    Dear Mama Gena —

    I love love love your blog post!! I am in reinvention prime-time…and your steps are timely and fit perfectly. Exciting changes are happening NOW! I am so grateful for you!!

    Thank you!! SG Jules

  • Yvonne Vermillion October 7, 2014, 11:33 pm

    After much research, my 29 year old daughter decided she wanted to sign up for mama gena’s . It is awesome that she found it because it allows her to be all she can be and has made me more open to my own uniqueness and desires. Right now, I am looking into below market housing options in San Francisco and Santa Cruz because my rent trippled where I was living in Santa Cruz. I’m open to either San Francisco or Santa Cruz, but with more information, I’m sure one door will close and the other door will open. No more renting for me! Thank you mama gena for encouragement and for helping us all realize our dreams!

  • Cindi McCorquodale October 7, 2014, 11:28 pm

    Since first discovering your books 3 years ago I’ve been involved with a 25 year old fo 2 years (I’m 53) and am getting ready to starr a new career as a flight attendant….reinvented! !

  • Robyn October 7, 2014, 9:09 pm

    I am in major reinvention zone. I had twin babies a year ago (Woot! We made it through the first year!) to accompany my 4.5 year old and realized that I needed to give up my job (as an attorney representing people on death row) because it was not responsible, or kind to myself, to be juggling so very much. However, this left me with a great sadness because I loved my job, which was a dream job in a way. But, I think it will be a while longer before I can do that kind of work with the single-mindedness and dedication to it that it needs. SOOOOOO, I’m now thinking of three things: going back to graduate school, potentially for an MSW or an MPH—two big paths not taken for me earlier; taking the Foreign Service Officers’ Test and taking my whole tribe on an international adventure (If I pass, which is a big if. . .); or starting my own business–either a law firm, or a non-profit venture to fund women coming out of prison and reinventing themselves. . .
    I’m kind of putting out feelers to all three options right now and watching for signs from the universe as to what I should be doing more of. . .am open to any suggestions, observations or encouragement. I love this community of women, dreamers, doers and makers!

  • Maria DiSalvo October 7, 2014, 8:13 pm

    I’m so excited to be reinventing yet again. I seem to do this every 9 years with my job so here goes….. I am a sexy ,hot genius goddess for creating a lucrative package to get laid off!!!!
    My kids are out of the house, I divorced my husband 3 years ago and now want to start my own retreat business. I’ve worked in the corporate world with golden handcuffs for a long time.
    The first week of mastery in February I got clear on my business creation and have not done a single thing about it…. No business plan… No pleasure research which is required, no smooth exit from my corporate job….. Well the shit hit the fan at work, as it always does for me when the universe is pushing me to move on. I don’t see me at my current corporate position much longer.
    I brag I let my boss, vp of sales and hr department know I am looking to leave. I’m grateful for the $ I have saved to hold me over till my business gets up and running, I desire to move to Costa Rica for 6 months and take some time off and start to write my business plan and get my ducks in a row. Love you mama gena for creating space!!! Thank you!
    Sister goddess marvelously moist maria

  • Shauna October 7, 2014, 6:19 pm

    I love Queen Kitty Mandy’s comment “it is difficult to acknowledge and accept the gifts you have been given, difficult to feel worthy of them, let alone bask in the glory they bring you, when for long very very long you were deemed as worthless”. Very, very powerful and true. In 2009, I left home (and everything but what would fit in my small car) and started a new adventure of re-discovery and re-invention. I completed a second university degree, found a new job, and relied upon strength and pose that I didn’t know was in me. Yet, I held onto a few intangible things that have been making me sad (really hard to give up). Thank you!

  • Steph October 7, 2014, 4:11 pm

    My favorite line is “lunge at anything that has even the smallest tug of interest to you”. That has just reframed the messiness I’m experiencing as I dial in to my most crystal clear desires. I am unbound!

  • Queen Kitty Mandy October 7, 2014, 3:51 pm

    I would like to express my gratitude for this post, as well as for the responses. I recently got myself, my husband, and our 12 1/2 year old boy out of the hell that was a teeny tiny northern Montana town where creativity and individualism go to die; and into a bigger city that is thriving with a music/art scene that we are a part of. We have started a screen printing business, I have my own painting/writing/sewing studio within our larger creative space, we have at least 4 gigs a month with our band, our child is thriving in his new school, we have projects out the wazoo… And yet… And yet…
    And yet here I am recognizing that I am the hot, creative genius of my own self sabotage. I am working toward so many different goals at once, I get overwhelmed and stop creating. I scare myself with the raw power that I have. I harness her to create and am blown away by the emotion that comes just from having created, and then later in the recognition of what I have created. I compare. I demean my own worth. And I self sabotage. I know this. I am working through this compulsion (because that is what it feels like) a little bit, day by day. It is difficult to acknowledge and accept the gifts you have been given, difficult to feel worthy of them, let alone bask in the glory they bring you; when for long very very long you were deemed as worthless. So today I work toward acceptance and sharing of my gifts without self-consciousness, without trepidation, and with a big middle finger raised to the haters. 🙂 thank you Momma Gena!!!!!

  • SG Jennifer October 7, 2014, 2:30 pm

    What’s a good way to reframe my mother’s impending death for step 1? Any ideas?

    • Robyn October 7, 2014, 9:14 pm

      I am a hot, sexy genius at forging ahead in spite of my grievous (impending) loss and creating a life worthy of the woman who gave birth to me???

      • Sister Goddess Karen October 8, 2014, 5:07 am

        SG Robin, that was awesome!

      • SG Jennifer October 8, 2014, 1:37 pm

        Thanks Robyn! That’s brilliant!

  • Mindy October 7, 2014, 11:48 am

    OY! I just came back from an epic retreat and journey and all my stuff got unearthed like a volcano so I am feeling very unsettled and very scared. I know what’s on the other side of it is magic. Mine is about self-love and worthiness. This reminds me of where I was when I came back from Maui, that;s why the OY! but I am different and I am prepared and I am excited. With so much love and gratitude. xoxo Mindeleh

  • Laura Jacobs October 7, 2014, 11:42 am

    There have been so many transition points in my life and now I am at another. I am dipping my toe into allowing myself the possibility of loving and being loved again after 21 years of being single I am excited , scared, ambivalent,and feel like I am throwing my life into another tornado of emotions . Why ?
    Because it is important to the next iteration of me. Am I scared? Oh my YES Have I figured out how to be elegantly single ?YES am I going to do it anyway YES !!!!!
    Thank you so much for giving us the tools It helps to use them every day for the shift.
    SG Laura

  • Juicy joan October 7, 2014, 11:42 am

    Yes, I am beginning to feel like a cat with nine lives! I have reinvented myself soooo many times it blows my mind. I have recently turned the big 60….hard to believe it ….I look 30 lol. I have been in deep reflection, looking back on all the different chapters of my life & all the various choices made. I have gone & done more than most people will ever get to experience & now I question how I desire to contribute in this next chapter of 60-70! Listening deeply for guidance …..I feel a real sense of urgency…..the clock is speeding up & I want to grab for all the gusto & leave no stone unturned before I leave this planet….stay tuned world !

  • Jennifer ( SG FAB) October 7, 2014, 11:32 am

    Oh, Mama! How your timing is perfect and eloquent! I’ve been feeling adrift. Missing my SG’s and missing you. I will follow your advice to a “T”. Thank you for your inner wisdom and guidance. I brag the intense love and support I receive from SWA community on a daily basis. I am grateful for daily fluffs, weekly blog, and tools to truly explore and expose my pleasure. I desire a juicy hot relationship with a man that worships me, clients and money flowing consistently into my bank account while I serve the world by share my gifts.

    xoxo ~ SG FAB

  • Susan Schaefer Bernardo October 7, 2014, 11:13 am

    I was pummeled in 2011 by a divorce. I had been a devoted stay-at-home and uber-volunteer mom for 15 years – now what? I got myself up from crying on the floor and started asking myself questions: Who am I? Where did the real me go? Where does she want to go NOW? Creativity saved me. Friends saved me. I saved me. Sisterhood pulled me up and got me dancing. I began taking intuitive painting and sculpting classes…and writing. I did my daily brags with a poet friend, and tapped into my inner firecracker. I wrote articles about moving through my pain for HopeAfterDivorce. I started writing poetry again to process my turbulent emotions. I’ve always loved school 0 now I became a student of life. Learning to forgive myself and others. Learning to love again and trust my heart and choices, even when it was so terrifying to use my voice. Learning to re-make my home into a creative sanctuary. I turned my dining room into an art studio. I started online dating and found an amazing new partner.

    And when I was missing my kids desperately when they were at their dad’s, I used the sadness, transformed it into something beautiful. I teamed up with another mom to write a children’s book about love. In rhyme. We did a Kickstarter drive and kicked booty, raised over $10,000 (thanks to loving friends and family and a lot of supportive moms we knew!). We self-published our book Sun Kisses, Moon Hugs at the end of 2012. I kept following every impulse – especially the desires to SHARE my feelings aloud, and to GIVE and HEAL and BRING COMFORT to other moms and children. I sent the book to hospitals, hospices, organizations that work with abused women and children, and to mommy bloggers everywhere….word spread. Another poem I wrote about my mother-in-law’s death was published in The Cancer Poetry Project anthology – and read aloud at World Cancer Day. Courtenay and I began speaking at schools and inspiring young people to create and follow their dreams. Magic kept happening…and I kept being grateful and showing up to receive it. A mommy blogger introduced us to a friend of hers, who happened to work with LeVar Burton on Reading Rainbow…and a few weeks later, Courtenay and I were meeting with him on the set of his TV show Perception, discussing his vision to create his first children’s book to help kids who had suffered trauma and loss. He brought us on to collaborate with him…and that book, A Rhino Who Swallowed a Storm, is being released wide today. It’s in Costco, B&N, indie book stores. It will be on Good Morning America this Thursday. Courtenay and I have our names on the book – and it’s so beautiful, a beautiful book that is sure to help thousands of kids heal, maybe even hundreds of thousands. MAGIC. BIG MAGIC!! In just a few years, I’ve taken all the delicious raw materials that I already possessed and reconfigured them and reinvented myself…as a professional poet and creativity facilitator. I am living my dream life. Thank you for the Daily Fluffs and all the wisdom…your words have helped me find my light and shine it brighter than ever.

    • Deb Castellano October 7, 2014, 5:18 pm

      What an amazingly inspiring story! And I googled your book and found a video of you reading it–soooo touching.

      SG Meow Meow

    • Robyn October 7, 2014, 9:17 pm

      Thank you for sharing this–it is really inspiring!

    • Island Goddess Sara October 8, 2014, 2:25 am

      Wow! Way to pick yourself up off the floor! Your journey is mind-blowing and so inspiring!

  • SG Alex October 7, 2014, 11:09 am

    Yup! I’m in the reinvention stage too. Daughter number 1 off to college 2 months ago, coming up on the 2 year mark post divorce, and coming up on reduced alimony so there’s a fire burning under my seat to get my ass in gear on this reinvention wheel. I celebrate that when I bring it on, I BRING IT ON!

    I’m also celebrating getting in touch with some internal ‘beliefs’ that are getting in my way and holding me back, particularly my anger, resentment, and disappointment. I’m celebrating in the swamp by letting it out in my own perfect timing in little bits and huge bits. The swamp is a place it took a long time for me to really learn to relish and wallow in, so I’m taking my time to wallow until I’ve had my fill.

    Thank you Mama Gena for sharing these insights and steps to reinvention.

  • Penelope October 7, 2014, 11:08 am

    As a freshly semi retired woman I took the plunge a few months ago and started kendo training – a Japanese martial art with wooden swords and a fabulous costume. I loved it.

    Now I have reached the stage of wearing full armour and what has come up for me is:
    1. urgh I don’t like being hit over the head – even when I am wearing (expensive) armour; and
    2. is this violence (to and from others) harming my own sense of my femininity?

    The question I am asking myself is, is it time to reinvent myself again or persist?

    • Corinne October 7, 2014, 12:22 pm

      Stick with it! I started jiu jitsu a year ago and spent the first few months doubting myself as well. (Especially since I’m 87 lbs in a room full of large men.) If you were interested enough to start martial arts in the first place, I’m sure there’s a fierce female warrior inside you looking for expression. You’ll even get used to being hit over the head.

    • Ruby Red October 7, 2014, 3:58 pm

      Strong women are feminine! Kendo on!

    • Alay'nya October 8, 2014, 1:36 pm

      I really understand your dilemma. I too was a martial artist – passionate and committed – for several years. Finally worked into softer martial arts, and then to Oriental dance (belly dance) – a much more feminine art form, yet a true body art – just as the martial arts are.

      Funny thing – about a month or so ago, began adding karate katas and sword work to my morning workout routine – in addition to the crunches, yoga, etc. Karate = focus. Sword = cutting through mental sludge.

      So maybe the question is: what aspects of kendo were attracting you? What parts of yourself does kendo feed? What is it about you that – right now – either needs this art or needs a different one?

      Much love – A.

  • Shannon Day October 7, 2014, 11:06 am

    Brilliant My Beauty!!
    I’m reinventing Right NOW!!!
    D & I are moving to Scotland for 2015.
    Why Not?!?!
    We’re reinventing ourselves…
    Come visit with your Nascar driver~

  • Jeanette Turner October 7, 2014, 11:02 am

    I have just recently started receiving your e-mails when my best girlfriend since the 4th grade sent me your e-mail about struggling to get by and I was and I am….I love, love seeing your e-mails when they come in….so full of wisdom, simple yet brilliant! I became unemployed 4 years ago, couldn’t get another job due to my old age of 55 (ha) so I started a business. I own a fine home furniture consignment store and it’s doing okay but I need to take it to the next level. It’s only been open 17 months so I try to not be so hard on myself since it is still a new business but it would sure be nice to be able to pay the bills, the consignors, and get a small paycheck. Most months I’m just very happy to be paying the bills and consignors. So I love reading your material and how to reinvent myself and the other very insightful things that you write about women. We need to ban together and help each other out and I love that about you…that you are helping us to do that. Thank you for all that you do for women! It always makes my day to get your mail.

  • Myriam October 7, 2014, 10:53 am

    May I suggest another turning point toward reinvention ? Cancer, or any other disease we go through. This is a major call for change, renewal, reinvention. Even if we are facing the end. Life is everywhere.

    • Crina October 7, 2014, 2:25 pm

      My-o-My! So true!!!

  • Anna October 7, 2014, 10:41 am

    I have *created* the end of a job that has made me MISERABLE for too, too long. As a byproduct, I have also created unemployment and brokeness. But, that is okay because I’m now creating a new job that I will like so much more. I can’t go shopping to get anything to dress up in but I can go shopping in my closet; actually, it is pretty fun to go back through my old things and find fun stuff I haven’t worn in a while. Going back to basics is good for me right now.

  • Sister Goddess Dazzling Debra October 7, 2014, 10:40 am

    I so love this path we are walking and I so love how you share your humanness Regena.
    I just recently was told that I need to take up the mantel of a writer.
    I wrote from the time I was old enough to hold a pen but had those desires dimished.
    And quite frankly I feel like I am going into this blindly but clearly, if that makes sense.
    Your blog, your way of digging deep and organizing your journey into words so that I can have the courage to do the same has such value for me.
    Thank you for being a wild woman but mostly thank you for creating a universal womb that gives us all a chance to give birth to our deepest desires.

  • Esther Fink October 7, 2014, 10:35 am

    Wow I love this. And I thought something was wrong with me for wanting to lunge at anything that interests me! I’m going for those guitar lessons now…. : ) Cannot WAIT for Miami.

  • Eugenia October 7, 2014, 10:29 am

    I find that the most unique trait of woman’s power is constantly find a way to make and remake herself in a most exquisite and timely way. I look around myself, as I’m changing, and I see and watch my teaches transformation. I get turned on and inspired. I learn from her and from every step she makes. I learn what drives her and what makes her tick. I figure what did she do to get where she is now. I get to take it all in and find me and my way to power and empower myself to bigger and greater things. I get to fly and feel approved in my actions because another woman took a stand to show me what’s possible. Then, I get to be that woman and find my own way and language of love!

    With love