My friend Stefanie Nagorka and I just published a book! The Kindred Spirit Companion Workbook is a companion to Kindred Spirit by Matthew and Terces Engelhart. It is intended to provide readers the opportunity discuss and explore the ideas in Kindred Spirit with a partner, friend, relative or co-worker through the use of 42 daily exercises.
Below is the forward I wrote for the book. Special thanks for my sister Mariana for helping us with graphic design.
In 2010, I began a journey I did not plan to take. I registered for a workshop in San Francisco, cleared my entire calendar for the weekend and showed up for class solely based on a website blurb and title. I didn’t know what I would learn in a class called Sacred Commerce offered by Cafe Gratitude leaders Terces and Matthew Engelhart but needless to say I was intrigued. At the time, I was newly involved with a women’s entrepreneur group and sought ideas to share with that community. Sacred Commerce seemed like something I might be able to add to my toolbox. Little did I know the course would open my heart and mind to the idea of unconditional love as a means of acceptance, trust and respect in the workplace.
I loved the course teachings so much that I bought the Sacred Commerce book, read it entirely immediately and shared it — through lots of tears — with friends Johanna Nilsson and Starla Sireno. I also immediately registered for the Engelhart’s next course — Kindred Spirit. That course was equally amazing and continued to promote unconditional love as a medicine to heal wounds, mend relationships and accept what is.
After the second course, I took the third — Abounding River. That course focuses on abundance and creation and incorporates a special log book through which readers can engage in a 42-day practice of abundance, generosity, gratitude, and self-awareness. Committed to completing the workbook, I raised my hand at the end of the Abounding River course and requested a partner.
That’s when Stefanie entered my life.
Stefanie and I had met previously, albeit briefly, when we took the Kindred Spirit workshop together several months earlier. I didn’t know anything about her other than her occupation (art teacher) and geographic location (East Coast); if you had asked me what state, I could not have told you. But the fact that I didn’t know her didn’t matter; she was willing to commit to completing the workbook with me and that was all I needed.
Engaging in the Abounding River Logbook with Stefanie was an amazing experience. When we started, Stefanie was still visiting the Bay Area for the summer. By the time we ended, she had returned to her New Jersey home. Over the 42 days, we shared frustrations, acknowledgements, challenges and dreams. We had such a great experience working together that we gave the workbook another go-round and continued to meet on the phone for another 42 days!
Once we completed the workbook twice, we started to write our own scripts in the style of Abounding River. At first our scripts related to the themes in the book, but after a few weeks, we began to create scripts that resonated with things that were going on in our lives, issues we wanted to work through personally.
And then Kindred Spirit was released. Immediately we started to read and re-read the book and create our own scripts based on its content.
This Companion is a compilation of our love and commitment to the ideas and points of views expressed in Kindred Spirit.
It is a compilation of a friendship with Stefanie based on trust and mutual admiration.
It is also compilation of deep personal knowing that I have, and have always had, an abundance of unconditional love in my life. I am lucky to have a great role model of love, service and gratitude in my mother Cynthia Guy. All of my life I have been totally inspired by my mother. And the more I learn about what it takes to *be love* the more I admire her. Among other things, she is a natural-born leader and instinctively possesses so many of the qualities I am just now able to put into words as an adult.
I am called to love as a way to carry out her legacy and to hold space for unconditional love in our world.
I am committed to sharing Kindred Spirit with as many people as possible because I know as I love, others will love as well.
You are loved,