Asking for impossible things

JOY in Vancouver
Follow your heart instead!
— Madelyn Mulvaney

Such a startling and provocative prompt ‘Asking for impossible things!’ There is something so magnificent  to me about this – a spotlight on desire, on hope, on dreams. And yet – often in conversation when I talk with people they say “oh I could never … I can’t possibly… it couldn’t possibly work out.”

Impossible things seem to point to big ideas for passionate wishes fulfilled – ultimately to create a more colourful happy life.

So often people marvel at my life – my beautiful  Arts studio, the loving relationship with my friends and family – my upbeat charismatic dog.  They are happy for me but a little envious as well. They often mention how they “thought about opening an arts studio too… or this and that” but then their voice drifts off into the ‘buts’ and the obstacles, ultimately dwindling into a dismissive wave of the hand.

The simple truth is, however, that if I had listened to the fears of others around me – I would not have my happy Arts studio.

My Mom was afraid, my friends were doubtful and worried, my accountant said it simply couldn’t work – (statistics pointed to 96 percent of most small businesses failing within a year or two at best.) Terrifying lack of support all around me.

I had no money, no business plan – simply a dream, an impulse and and upbeat energy. I was persistant. I was positive and outgoing and hopeful and excited – and my belief in myself was infectious. A small loan came in from my petrified Mom – and off I went.

May I have the courage today
To live the life that I would love,
To postpone my dream no longer
But do at last what I came here for
And waste my heart on fear no more.
— John O'Donohue

If I had listened to the fears of these beautiful people around me I wouldn’t be who I am – a happy business owner with a strong Arts Studio now five years old. I wouldn’t live in a bright apartment around the corner of the studio supporting a loving staff of 5 and my own everyday needs.

The truth is I was afraid. Every single day. I had and still have bouts of anxiety that can really pull me down and taking bigger leaps of faith in my business daily terrified me. Still. To this day. It’s not for the faint-of-heart for sure. Uphill. Twisty. Unknown territory.

But I went forward anyway. I took the next step and the next and the one after that.

When I took my first step I asked myself if I was passionate about my dream, did I love it? Would it use my unique talents and skills? And was it going to make me a better person for having done it? And finally: was there a chance that, by creating this business, it would help someone else in some way?

Yes, yes, yes YES.

I deserved a successful outcome to my impossible dream.

Somehow, my energy and determination attracted energies, resources and good fortune along the path – clearing the way for my desires and intentions. It seemed that beautiful resources and people would suddenly appear when needed.

And I quickly understood that choosing a supposedly ‘difficult’ or impossible journey was not getting the credit it deserved.

I just knew I would get there and I kept on walking and being utterly grateful for the small and bigger moments of success and joy amidst the inevitable challenges and setbacks.

I refuse to live in fear even when I am profoundly afraid.

I live in hope, I live in joy, I live BRAVE. I never give up and all these good things continue to show up in my life and attract angels.

One of our main mottos in the studio is CREATE YOUR LIFE. Create your art, create your intentions, create your tribe and take bold colourful steps to live a fulfilling, beautiful life.

I can promise you this: There will ALWAYS be people all around you (people you admire, people you love, people wandering in and out of your life) who will say not to be brave, not to take risks and to settle for good enough.

Abundance, joy, love, magical things will all show up when you are brave enough to show up for YOU. You have to be brave and believe in impossible things – for the sake of braveness and magic alone. It seems basic but I was continuously reminded what a huge impact these tiny actions of bravery can make to us.

And then one day we all have the moment where we say :

”Wow, I prayed for this. It’s here. It’s happening.”

***For more beautiful essays on ‘asking for impossible things’ go to my web designers’ website and sign up to read them all!

Inspired, grounded, happy

wellbeing and joy vancouver.jpg
morning coffee at my brother’s cottage on Denman island - it really is the simple things that make a beautiful life
— Maddie

This week a message popped up on my iPhone that read ' Your screen time went down 29 percent last week.' This thrilled me as I aspire to the highest quality of life to cultivate my spiritual growth. Recently at one of our Luminous Socials a woman asked me how I practice this level of inner sunshine and I thought I would love to share the little things I have identified that contribute to a more mindful day.

  1. Each and every day I read from a book (usually just a chapter!) and cook something wholesome in my little kitchen.

  2. I create a beautiful piece of work whether it be taking a photograph, writing a poem, or decorating a corner of my home.

  3. I am inspired to leave my phone at home when I go for a long, meandering walk with my dog Lucy or a friend along the seawall, Pacific Spirit park, up the mountains.

  4. I mediate each morning for 40 minutes and pariticualy love love love the Headspace app.

  5. I move my body every single day  - often on a hike, a bicycle ride, a yoga class at Semperviva or a simple walk with my dog.

  6. Each day - I have a quiet, sweet real conversation with someone I love - a present, 'listening' conversation where I make a point to reach out and explore a meaningful connection. I come away more deeply in love with this person - and cherish them all at the more profoundly for this time together as I have taken the time to understand their heart a bit better.

All these little bits of sunshine make me feel so much more inspired, grounded, happy.  Of course! I have bad days, and sad moments, and difficult challenges - but these simple practices bring out the very best and most beautiful of my life and my soul in our world.

What are your practices for a beautiful life?

big love,

five things Friday

Maddie at Denman Island.jpg

Well this is such a charmer (scooped it up In the bookshop on Denman Island

I’m sure you have flaws but I just can’t see them - how do you stand up to a sunset anyway?


A beautiful fellow proposed to his sweetheart in our studio a few weeks ago. He turned the entire studio into a gallery of photos and films celebrating their personal moments together. Now every morning when I come to ‘work, not work’ I can feel the love:). (and yes, she said yes)

This weekend I am gearing up for a cooking Fiesta! Pumpkin cookies, pumpkin maple pie, pumpkin scones…well, you get my drift:) I’m so content lately - filled with a quiet kind of thoughtfulness. My morning meditations are such abundance to me….