It’s now been a full year since I left on sabbatical from the corporate world. After nearly twenty years of working for other people, I wanted to spend some time working on my “art.” For me, art included writing fiction and starting my own “creative incubator.” I also wanted to get out of the corporate machinery, in order to FEEL my impact.

I’m not going to lie, it’s been scary.

I was sorely out of practice with cultivating client relationships from start to finish. I KNEW what I had to do, but the DOING is always the challenge. I was also shifting from a very conservative, risk-averse environment and it took me awhile to get comfortable representing more daring ideas.

I’m still not comfortable with it all, but I’m learning to do it anyway. I’ve given myself permission to experiment, explore and to make art. It’s been awesome and I am so grateful to have had this opportunity.

Which is why MATAGI is issuing a challenge. To everyone who needs a little push, a dare, or encouragement to be creative, try something new and venture into the unknown.

Tell us what kind of permission you most want or need right now — for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift certificate.

Click here for submission link and contest rules.

Below are some of the permissions, big and small, I’ve given myself over the past year. 

  • Permission to not worry about what other people think.
  • Permission to write to my favorite authors and ask for advice (sidenote: Seth Godin, Angela Duckworth, Laszlo Bock and Wil Wheaton – actually wrote back – how cool is that!)
  • Permission to take what I learned in corporate America-things like facilitating Idea Generation workshops-and share it with my community!
  • Permission to start my own business with a bold vision for creating sustainable creativity.
  • Permission to create new products to support that vision
  • Permission to ask for help
  • Permission to offer help
  • Permission to be honest (and kind)
  • Permission to speak truth to power.
  • Permission to take care of myself first
  • Permission to try new things
  • Permission to try and to fail (but hopefully succeed)
  • Permission to do weird things – like teach yoga even though that’s not something Yale MBAs should do
  • Permission to get angry and pissed off and not be a calm cool collected zen yogi
  • Permission to lean into my strengths and not worry so much about my weaknesses.
  • Permission to get into the flow and do my thing
  • Permission to write a Pride and Prejudice sequel even though I am not British and I don’t have my Ph.D. in Regency manner
  • Permission to do my best
  • Permission to do my “good enough”
  • Permission to say no
  • Permission to lead
  • Permission to follow
  • Permission to forgive (others and myself)
  • Permission to change
  • Permission to live in the moment
  • Permission to ask that others treat me the way I treat them – and to leave them behind when they fail to live up to that expectation

Thanks to everyone who’s inspired me and keeps inspiring me!


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