Marie Forleo introduction


I'm Marie

You have gifts to share with the world and my job is to help you get them out there.

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Have you ever felt discouraged, disheartened or even depressed by the turmoil and uncertainty that surround you?

When we’re engulfed in circumstances that feel beyond our control, finding the strength and courage to keep going isn’t always easy. Understandably, we can feel helpless and alone.

That’s why when this question came in from a reader in Iraq, it broke my heart wide open.

Her letter was a powerful reminder that no matter who we are or where we come from, the vast majority of humans want the same things: to be safe and connected with those we love, to contribute and grow through meaningful work, and to live in peace.

If you’ve ever struggled to find strength and meaning in a highly uncertain world, today’s episode can help.

Nothing physical lasts forever, but the legacy you create is here to stay. Click To Tweet

You’ll learn two simple and highly effective tools to use whenever you feel discouraged and maybe even wonder… “What’s the point anyway? All of this is futile. How can I possibly keep going when everything could be taken away?!?”

You’ll also learn about the philosophy that Mother Teresa found so inspiring that she put it up on the wall of her children’s home in Calcutta.

It speaks to the strength and purpose we can find as we face the reality of impermanence, and the power that comes from being willing to share our gifts no matter what.

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Check out this episode on The Marie Forleo Podcast

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Dive deeper into Kent Keith’s Do It Anyway philosophy through his book here.

Now I’d love to hear from you. Choose one or both of the follow questions to answer in the comments below.

  1. R. shared that she was feeling like she has to figure it out on her own. What support and encouragement can you share with her in the comments below, to let her know she’s not alone.
  2. Have you ever found yourself feeling like it’s futile to create something, especially if you’re afraid it could all be taken away? What shift in thinking has helped you?

Remember, share as much detail as possible in your reply. Thousands of incredible souls come here each week for insight and inspiration, and your story may help someone else have a meaningful breakthrough.

Important: share your thoughts and ideas directly in the comments. Links to other posts, videos, etc. will be deleted as they come across as spammy.

Thank you a million times over for adding your love and your voice, and for making this little corner of the Internet one of the best in the land.

If you have friends, clients or colleagues who are struggling to find strength and purpose in a crazy-uncertain world, please share this post.

All my love,


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  1. Kim

    First, thank you Marie and R. for a heartfelt question and heartfelt response.

    R, I can tell you right now that you have inspired me and probably thousands of others with your question. The fact that you reached out to Marie, that you haven’t given up, is a testament to your resilience. I hope Marie’s advice will help you keep going.

    I’ve experienced many times that helpless feeling, when I think that what I create isn’t having the impact I would like. I’ve come to learn that if something I create touches only one person, it is all worthwhile. And, that it can have a ripple effect that we may never even know. I think you’ve started that ripple here today.

    • This was so very deep and absolutely timely in my life. Thank you both.
      I’m sending you some love an hope…and a hug, I feel like a hug is in order here. 🙂
      You are definitely not alone R, I’ve been in a place very similar to the one you speak of (although my chaos and circumstances out of my control were very different) and I understand how sad and unmotivating that space can be. In my case, I found that starting the #100daysofgratitude challenge on Instagram last spring really helped me to put the wind back in my sails and allow me to take one tiny step forward each day. It was part of my healing process and may be helpful to others as well.
      Know that others are, have been and will be grateful for the things you do and for you simply being you.
      Know that the things you create and the love you share with the world has an impact…even if only to a single person. That single person is worth it.
      Much love,

      • Yes! Gratitude is amazing. It is such a powerful tool that we can use to create a positive shift in our lives. Try this: as you are falling asleep each night, speak 7 moments, actions or things that you were grateful for that day. They can be as small as finding a parking spot when you were running late, laughing with a friend in the phone, feeling the sun on your face at lunch. With this practice, gratitude begins to infuse each and every cell in our body. What a gift to give ourselves, yes?

        • Joseph Bennett, thank you.

        • Andrea Rand

          Action Based Care is my non-profit organization legac!! it’s so hard trying to find my tribe, board of directors, help. Now I live on my sailboat and was hoping this would be a people magnet but I’m still alone and discouraged. I started teaching sailing in Portland Maine harbor 42 years ago. Now I can’t even communicate or get a job or interview at the local non-profit organization Sail Maine.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Kim! To touch even one person’s life is to make a powerful impact. <3

    • Sindhujaa

      Dear R,
      Sending you love, strength and prayers- may your country be blessed with peace and safety.

      Second, if you have the time, do read Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert. It addresses different kinds of fear around creative projects – our passion projects. You might find some interesting answers in there to your question.

      She reminds us that a creative life is a life of courage and adventure. When we add some play to our passion and create for the love of it, with less attachment to outcomes- the less you will be paralysed by fear, and the more divinity will flow through your work. Place lesser stress on what the world does with your masterpiece once you’ve gifted it to them…. and instead create for the joy of creating 🙂 Passion always touches lives – but we can’t control how and when and why.

      Like a flower that blossoms with all the beauty it can muster, offering joy to all, and then fades out – let us accept the journey and beauty Of our lives and our projects 🙂

      Shine bright. And may love and joy flood your life .

      • wendelijn

        I had the same thought: you might need BIG MAGIC ! Made a diffidence for me when I feel everything I do is futile and not worthwhile in the bigger scheme of things.
        Send you lots of love

      • This was the most profound text I’ve read today. It has awaken and inspired me. Thank you for sharing !

      • Christine

        I second that! Big Magic was such an amazing book, and it had a serious impact on me. In fact, I may need to read it again…

    • Doris Pipala

      You have to build and create for the present time and have faith that this spirit of creation and ability will always be with you. So if your past achievements have been destroyed, phased out, etc. you can still take joy in what you are creating in the present. Your past achievements have made you what you are today and they are still with you in your mind if not on the physical plane. We must live for each day and always create something new or be in the process of creating something new by gathering information or practicing, etc.. Always ask what is next, or what can I do today.

    • Rippled here in Australia! xoxoxo

      • Sharon "Smokey" Gray

        Rippled here in Santa Monica, CA.

  2. Barry Hall

    Many thanks Marie for some great info for “R” and everyone else. Keep up the great work. – Barry.

  3. Dear R.,
    Your story touched me. You are not alone. Know that when you meditate, hundreds of thousands of people are meditating with you and we’re connected, supporting you with love and light. In that silence, you can feel the vibration of goodness in the world and when you design your buildings, that goodness comes through and it’s seen by many. Change happens.

    • Julienne

      Yes! I second what Barbara wrote! Just remember that positivity begets positivity and if you can try Marie’s daily exercises (with goooood music) and meditation you will be able to get in sync with all these positive vibes out in the world. Don’t give up R. Keep going and creating and living! You may not know it but you have the potential to touch many people in Iraq and around the world through your inspired work. Think of all the girls who will look up to you and say “Wow- she did it! Maybe I can do it too!”
      If not for yourself- do it for posterity’s sake. Don’t allow the sadness and misery drag you down. Recognize that it’s there, dig a little deeper inside and find the courage to choose to see the love in everything- and where there is a lack of it- fill it with loving thoughts and energy… and by doing this -you will fill yourself with love… and the cycle of goodness will continue. Sorry, if I got carried away. R- your story really touched me and this is the first time I ever wrote in any comments on Marie’s site but you drew me in.

      • Pauly

        Great ideas … May the peace you find in meditation and prayer help you transcend the troubles around you. Keep shining your light!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So true, Barbara! We’re one human family and meditation connects us to one another.

      • Max

        Sending you positive vibez and love R! A lot of people are going through self doubt and fear in “will thing and work out, or am I wasting my time ”
        I’m trying mediation right now and it’s not easy but Marie and some of my fav people including Oprah and Tony R swear by it. Good enough for them, we gotta give it a try.
        I’m learning the company you keep is so very important and balance in life also. M x

    • Patrice Lane

      That is beautiful, Barbara!

  4. Dear R, I am a news reader in the UK, and I wanted you to know that everyday when I am telling the world about what is going on in Iraq, I always try to imagine the faces, the lives, the struggle and the strength of the people I am talking about. Tonight when I am on air, I will be thinking about you, your love of your job, your hopes and your dreams. I hope you feel a little bit of love being sent across the airways. I too struggle to keep on going and I am not living in fear for my life. I have so much admiration for your strength and courage. Knowing that you have reached out for support in such difficult circumstances, encourages me to ‘keep on building anyway’. JMac

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much, Julie. Your work keeping people informed about what’s going on in the world is vitally important.

    • Dear Julie, you are allowed to struggle even when you are not struggling for your physical life.

      Other people’s suffering does not diminish nor invalidate our own – unless we let it.

      Nor does invalidating our own suffering help others (if it did, there might be some point to it, rather than just using it to beat ourselves up & adding to our excess of invalidation)

      I think healthy USEFUL alternatives to being shamed by the suffering of others include:

      1. Helping – we often feel helpless in the face of apparently overwhelming suffering. However, by all means offer practical assistance, but helping can be as simple and profound as truly hearing someone and bearing witness to their pain.

      I did this for eight years as a volunteer Lifeline telephone counselor, and was frequently stunned at how quickly people’s distress can ease when they feel someone is finally hearing them.

      I hope R is feeling heard today.

      2. Gratitude and mindfulness – Brene Brown’s work covered this well. People who have suffered terrible loss – such as the loss of a child – generally don’t want others who haven’t lost a child to feel guilty, nor to live in fear of loss.

      How others can honor their loss, is to be grateful for what they have in the moment.

      Worrying about loss will not protect us if and when loss does happen. Conversely, gratitude can’t prevent loss, but it WILL protect us by providing resilience.

      Rather than feeling indifferent or guilty about our freedoms, I suspect we can best honor R by appreciating and protecting them.

      Very best wishes to you, Marie, & R

      • K

        Your comment spoke to me. What you say is so right, especially this one here
        “How others can honor their loss, is to be grateful for what they have in the moment.”

        My best friend lost her husband and I got carried away in her loss. For many years, I stopped myself from living my life to the point that I felt guilty being intimate with my spouse or having a vacation with my family. Gratitude, faith, self-love got me thru..the journey is still on..I try everyday.

        I read this book called “Writing down your soul – Janet Connor” and that turned the tables for me. Now I write down my soul everyday like there is no one watching me. I write my fears, my anger, gratitude, dreams everything..i write until there is nothing more to say. Then I start to hear my inner voice coming thru my own words. I meditate and have found guidance. I found my guru(teacher) and finally at peace with myself.

        I have struggled and continue to struggle with what I call as “purposelessness of existence.” Marie, like you have shared everything you create, build, hope, wish, love in the physical plane is perishable. For me, when I fly in an airplane watching the world below..I see a broad brush of land, water, clouds. At a macro level, everything is perfect as it needs to be and all is part of a very big pretty painting. I see no purpose in chasing anything and just wish to be and witness. Not sure if any of it makes sense, but in my belief that our life goals are only what make us happy. So, R keep creating what you love..whatever you do is for you!
        Sending you peace, love and sanity in trouble times – K

        • Dear K,
          Thank you, and it sounds like after some painful times you have this empathy thing figured out.

          The clinical definition of empathy (and it’s a critical therapeutic ingredient) is to feel for the other person BUT while simultaneously maintaining boundaries between their pain and yours.

          We cannot serve others if we are lost in their pain.

          Very best wishes,

  5. Imane

    Thank you R. For the enegy and passion you give to what you love doing. The war is a visible challenge to you. We in countries without war have invisible challenges (our fears and doubts, society, family circumstances) all challenging us. You are not alone and we feel you, keep doing what you love doing, express gratitude and appreciation for what you created if it did not last in the world physically it did grow within you to make you grow wiser and stronger. Sending you Love, Imane from the Netherlands ?

  6. Hey R – its Hadeel from Kuwait.

    Please don’t give up. I know it is challenging especially in Iraq but you have to keep the faith.

    I’m cheering you on from your closest neighbor country.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you, Hadeel! So glad you’re here. <3

      • The best that I can do <3

        • Kristen Elizabeth

          Completely beautiful. Such happiness coming from you–your best is quite wonderful <3

    • Annette Phillips

      Hi Hadeel,
      I didn’t exactly know why, but your response to R. made me burst into tears, big fat juicy tears!!
      I quickly clicked over to your website to find “3 Style Tips for Beautiful Women”…and there you were so beautiful, kind and loving. Your love is so strong and powerful. Thank you.
      1. R. Thank you for question…look how much love and light has been generated. I feel humbled and deeply grateful to have been part of your experience.
      2. When I find myself feeling futile I shift my thinking with gratitude and by repeating “Thank you for this gift of LOVE”
      Regardless of the situation it magically lifts me.
      Thank you Marie for your humility, dignity and grace on MarieTV today…my heart is wide open. I feel the love reverberating around the world for R. xx

      • Hey Annette,
        Wow, I sure did expect tears! Thank you – you’re comment really made my day!
        That’s the least that I can do.
        I hope you enjoyed my 3 tips. Thank you for visiting my site.


  7. Hey R – its Hadeel from Kuwait.

    Please don’t give up. I know it is challenging especially in Iraq but you have to keep the faith.

    I’m cheering you on from your closest neighbor country.


  8. melissa

    Hi R –
    You threw a stone into the water and I am one of the ripples that appeared. I will be meditating and moving along with you for the next 7 days. Let’s heal together. Sending love from Chicago, and encouragement from the spirits of Daniel Burnham, Frank Lloyd Wright, Jeanne Gang & Louis Sullivan!

  9. Her- your courage and vulnerability has created a ripple that just inspired the entire MarieTV community! I’ve struggled with depression on and off for the past 10 years, and know as an artist how isolating it is to try to create from that place- know the clouds will always pass, and that your gift and light are more than welcome in this world, they are worthy.

    Like Marie said, meditation is an amazing practice to check-in and center yourself, but in addition when I’m feeling stressed or overwhelmed I play this game: what are 10 minutes of fun I can do just for me? What would bring me gorgeous, selfish, unabashed joy for just 10 min? Do that. Everyday. Sometimes we need to shake out the cobwebs and celebrate (even if it’s just 10 min).

    Sending you lots of love and solidarity from Brooklyn!


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a great tip, Erin! Thank you for sharing it. Even just 10 minutes a day can make a big difference.

  10. Catherine

    Thinking of you today, R!!! Marie mentioned music- this always lets the sunshine in for me and gets me dancing :
    Love from Canada!

    • Tal

      Catherine, thanks for sharing this music! I used to listen to this style of music years ago and forgot how it instantly lifts my mood. You made at least one person happy and dancing in their room today (and from Canada too!)

    • Jessica

      Catherine! I know this comment was for R, but it was also for me! I clicked on your link and I’m listening to the music with tears streaming down my face. My mother passed away three years ago and she loved this kind of music, and actually this was one of her favorite songs that she used to play for us as a kid, but I never knew what it was called or how to find it. And here it is! So many wonderful memories flooding over me right now. I’m so grateful. Thank you! Such a happy, peaceful feeling. Much love to you and this awesome community. -Jess

  11. R – My family lost everything in a flood when I was 28. My husband was an artist and I stood with him at the top of a hill while we watched all of his years of work wash away in mudslide and flood. Together we had a few dollars in our pocket, the clothes on our back and two cans of coca cola. I thought for sure my husband was going to go into a deep depression. INSTEAD – I did. It took me a long time to come out of it and it is still painful to think back on that time.
    What I can share from that life experience was that my husband saw it as a moment to change his creative avenue. He turned that experience around and became a playwright. I came out of my depression and started a business that requires no inventory and makes me get out and connect with people.
    It is possible to survive something out of your control. It takes time and most importantly you have to give yourself space to feel a range of emotions. In the end it will make you a better architect, creative, and inspired soul.
    Thank you for sharing your story.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with us, Flora! It’s really good to hear from someone who has come through a tragedy and knows firsthand what R is feeling. I’m so glad you were able to start your own business and that your husband found a new creative direction! We appreciate you reaching out and sending love R’s way.

  12. Bethany

    I really believe that most depression comes from a feeling of not being in control. I know I have experienced that at different times in my life. I know Mother Teresa dealt with that by believing that God was in control. What happens may not be what you wish would happen, but God does have a plan and it is always for our happiness. My best friend was murdered in February, leaving his wife of 24 years and his 5 year old son. He was very much loved by his community and his hometown. I didn’t understand it. I still don’t. But I know God has a plan somehow for this. And I am dealing with it by loving his family and showing that to them as much as I can! I am an illustrator and designer, and I can imagine what you’re feeling. You have knowledge that could be passed to others, especially younger people! Find a way to share that so that the creativity can continue! Or share it with the world through a blog! Material things can be destroyed more easily but knowledge and wisdom and ideas cannot. My relatives lived through horrific times in Germany in WWII. I believe we are stronger-minded for it. The little things that others worry about tend to be a little more insignificant to us. I will pray for you!!!

    • Anne

      Totally agree with you; I was going to write a comment about our families and WWII, and that many people tend to worry about insignificant things nowadays. I always think about my mom, this little girl in 1943, waking up in the middle of the night at the sound of sirens, shaking in the shelter as next street’s buildings were destroyed by bombs… everything is fine. The physical is impermanent but thoughts and ideas are not so impermanent. I also think that you’re spot on about depression often being about not being in control. Meditation can help us focus on what we actually can control, and it can help avoid depression, in my opinion.

  13. Dear R,

    Thank you for reaching out and sharing your worries with us.

    1. The world needs you and your work. Only the fact that your letter has inspired so many of us already is proof of that. And your passions, your creativity and your work is so meaningful.

    2. I have many time doubted myself and my creative work. What keeps me going is the notion I could inspire others and that would make it all worthwhile. And, life is here and now (this I have to tell myself often).
    Much love and strength to you R.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautiful, Emeli! It really is true what Marie says at the end of every episode: “the world needs that special gift that only YOU have.” That’s true for you and R both. 🙂

  14. LOVED this, Marie. To R, my heart breaks for what you and other Iraqi’s have had and continue to go through. Please remember that the people of your community/country deserve and need the end result of your work. They need beauty, art, and hope for the future. My thoughts are with you. <3

  15. “People are illogical, self-centered, etc.—love them anyway” Wow! This is so powerful. I love it! Such hard advice but something we all must learn. God Bless.

  16. R, you’ve inspired me today with your strength and passion! Keep building, keep loving, keep that fire! Much love and support from Portugal!

  17. R., as long as you keep building with love, that can never be torn down, or ripped away. The building is just the physical aspect of your love, the heartfelt part remains intact and unshakeable.

    I recently experienced the physical passing of a very important man in my life, my father, my first love. But his spirit, his legacy, will last forever.

    Be blessed, and love always wins.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such an important reminder, Danielle! Thank you for sharing it. The physical may fade, but the heart, soul, and love are here to stay. I’m so sorry your sweet dad passed away, though I’m glad he left a beautiful legacy.

  18. Thank you for this encouraging video and deep thoughts on a Tuesday afternoon (already pm here :). I can relate to you question R. and share your fears and doubts… so I decided to share my viewpoint in hope that it might also help you experience more love and less fear.

    In the past years, living in Turkey, although it can’t even begin to compare to the trauma you must be experiencing on a daily basis, has been more than challenging.

    Every single person I know in my home country has asked me when we are planning to leave. They are asking me “why are you still there?” on a constant basis.

    And while the political and economical situation here in Turkey is more frustrating, scary and dangerous by the day, we, my husband and I, choose to stay.

    One reason, among others, is that we want to enjoy and love the place as we know it for as long as it lasts. Realizing that in a few years Turkey might be a completely different place, due to political tension, makes me want to stay even more. It makes me want to experience all of it, as it is now, as Marie also comments – it’s perishability makes me feel like I have to live it now or never. It makes me want to get to know the people, the places, the food, the life…as it is NOW. Because soon, it might not be…at all.

    I believe while seeing destruction and decay, in all realms of life, is sad, but also reminds us that we still have the chance to experience what’s left and helps us appreciate it even more.

    So, I’m staying, for as long as I can. Because Turkey is more than bombs and political manipulations. And I’m staying for that more.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We’re sending so much love your way too, Antoniya! Your home is important and we hope your love for Turkey will inspire others to stay too and keep calling it home.

    • Judy

      Antoniya – thank you for those words – that last sentence really helps and strengthens. And to R. – thank you for inspiring this outpouring of love and wisdom!!

    • April

      Your comment touched my heart so deeply. I am so sorry for all that you are having to endure in your country but I COMPLETELY understand what you mean by saying (in effect) that the fact that it may never be the same again is what makes you want to stay so you can savor every moment before it changes. I commend you for your strength, courage and fortitude. Prayers for your home, your family, your country and your safety.


  19. Dewi

    What a tough topic. Being powerless can occur at any circumstances to anyone, even in our most difficult time. In my case, experiencing family issue or family got sick could hinder my spirit to fire up in doing my stuff. However, like Marrie said, we can chose to make the turmoil to become our power booster to truly live, love and share our positivity to others so the strugling and despair will disolve a bit. In terms of how to empower ourself, please put your faith to the Almighty sister, in the faith that He who always watch and never sleep will never let us drown. And our support to let your voice being heard so this turmoil or conflict can be ended.

  20. Katina Diep

    It took a while to accept the anxiety I felt, on a daily basis. I had cancer at a relatively young age, and the following months, was diagnosted with bipolar disorder. Just recently I got it: feeling bad is just a phase, I can still love myself, love my life. I learned to stop giving fuel to the bad feeling, by overthinking. I realized that a phase can last an hour, within a 12 hour day. That would give me 11 hours to appreciate, be greatful just to be here. You’ll figure it out in time 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing, Katina! It sounds like you have a really good plan in place and are quickly able to identify when you’re overthinking. That’s definitely something meditation can help with too, so I hope you and R both find it to be a helpful practice. We’re so glad you’re here.

  21. Natalie

    Dear Marie, dear R, thank you for this beautiful episode and thanks for sharing your story! R, I think what you are doing is really inspirational to all of us, and your situation (building something that may get destroyed only hours later) is quite a good metaphor for life in general. That’s what it’s all about: to keep going against all odds.
    Lots of love from Switzerland!

  22. Elena

    R – you are a unique, special force that we your sojourners in this world need.
    Despair if you need to for a few moments, from time to time – to allow it to be released. Grieve as you need to. But don’t linger too long in despair, it will disempower you.
    What you suffer from circumstances beyond your control, let it not take from you any more than absolutely necessary to right yourself, dust off and continue with head held high – in communion with the universe who supports you.
    I have not seen your face. I have not heard your voice, but I SEE you.
    With love,

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Elena! I love what you shared about allowing yourself to feel the feelings you need to feel, but to not feel them any longer than you need to. That’s such great advice.

  23. Wow, this went right to my heart also. Dear, R, I too felt alone just less than two years ago when I was going through a divorce and diangnosed with cancer at the same time. Honestly, I wanted to die. Infeltbsonalone and helpless. I carried so much shame and guilt. The worst part was that is I lost all my friends through the process. It was a like a knife had gone through my back. Twenty years of friendship gone just like that because of a mistake I make. Which later, I realize was a gift. Seriously, one of my friends said that his wife couldn’t be my friend anymore because she believed I didn’t get enough therapy and stay in the psych ward that my husband and friend called on me. The crazy thing is that I found the most love and respect from a person I didn’t even know. He was a professional who worked with PTSD. Although I am not living in your county in war, I had my own war zone in my little house. Nobody even knew the pain that I was living with. At one point, I wished myself dead….. and literally, a few months later I was doangnosed with a cancer with no cure. No I was confused. I didn’t really want to die, I just wanted a friend. I wanted a companion to listen to me. I needed help. That’s when I joined a online training to become a life coach, even though I thought I was going to die. I know this sounds crazy, but when I was going through cancer treatment, I started to chase all my dreams and show myself that I AM WORTH IT. I didn’t wantnto die and leave this world feeling like a failure and sure didn’t want my kids to see me as a failure. I had already failed them by our marriage breaking up. They hated me. This broke my heart. So at the most challenging time of my life, I was fighting cancer and fighting a crazy the most uncompassionate ex you have ever met. I learned to send him love anyway and forgive myself and others who were cruel to me. Crazy, but it made me feel more peace in my life. I learned not to fight back, but to love even those who hate. The most important thing I learned and saw with my own two eyes is how fast life can be taken from you, even if you don’t have cancer or live in a war zone. It’s so true that at any given moment, any one of us could be in a car accident and lose our life. It happened to a friend of mine and this was a huge wake up call. This is when I said, f**it and started to live for me. Yep, the ex called me selfish too. Now, I am starting a new business and live in the moment. I don’t know if you have kids like I do, but I wanted to make them proud and show them that no matter what circumstances come your way, you never give up on chasing your dreams. So I think you are so brave to write in and I think you should give yourself the permission to build your business. I believe as long as we are happy today and feeling inspired we are more alive in our soul. What is the point of living is you can’t even be you or holding yourself back. Go girl and just know that there are thousands if not millions of people who share your same story. You are not alone. I love you and keep on going ❤❤❤❤Emilee from California

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so, SO much, Emilee! I’m really sorry to hear of the hardships you’ve endured, but I’m so glad you’re living for you, shining your light in the world, and inspiring others through your work as a life coach. It’s clear you have a lot of heart and compassion, which I know informs the powerful wisdom you share. We’re honored you’re in the MF community and are sending buckets of love your way.

    • Mirka

      Emilee, thank you so much about your words! They really touched me. You are absolutely right.

      For R: please, keep going girl! Creativity, passion… please, never give up of being the best of you, never give up for your life, dreams, ideas… because I think that is exactly the most powerfull weapon for everything: depression, hate, struggle and so on. Even if you make the tinest step it worth a lot!! As Emille wrote: “I had my own war zone in my little house”, I had it too. Making the tinest steps helped me to survive.
      Another thing which also helped me was STOP TALKING with your inner self too much. Just do it. Because you can be trapped in your own mind´s talks and that is actually really killing.
      I am sending you my love and prayers, Mirka from Prague

  24. Christina

    R!!! You are speaking what we are all feeling my love! While we aren’t ALL living where you are, I worry very deeply and do lose sleep over the turmoil that human beings have to love through due to war & conflict.
    I want you to know that all of the suggestions that Marie has suggested WORK. I live with depression and GAD- generalized anxiety disorder, which can seem like it’s taking over my life. But I manage it. Some days are easier than others. Exercise is a tried, tested & true key component to managing depression. It’s like shaking off the bad vibes. It helps! Routine is also helpful, getting in your meals and of course, just as mother theresa said “do it anyway,” the end of that prayer says “it was never between you and them anyway.” Always know that you are valued, you are loved and you are adored.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s gold, Christina! Especially the very last sentence. I hope R sees all these messages of support and feels valued, loved, and adored in her soul.

  25. Sending love and light to you R and to everyone listening/reading. Thanks Marie for all you do.

  26. A

    R, thank you for sharing! It is only when we reach out that we can feel supported, and so often so many of us choose to sit in silence and pull the blanket over our heads. You are so supported, and I can feel all of the love and light that this community is sending to you! As for your work, I for one am awed by the work of architects, creating majestic beauty through solid foundations, and trust that because you share your heart in your work, and is supported by all of the love of this community, your creations will stand tall forever.
    Love and Light to you and all at MF!

  27. Dear R, I have been struggling with a personal relationships and some self love issues for many many years. And so its not personally tied to my work. However it affects my work greatly. It unmotivated me and takes all my time and it motivates me to become more loving to myself and stronger. It feels like an uphill battle at times. And other days, I stop to look at the spectacular view from the level in which I have climbed and fill myself with gratitude. We are one human family. I share your concerns and I also share love. We can do this R! Your making a difference and your not alone!


  28. Thandi

    What a beautiful, supportive community you’ve built, Marie, thank you.

    R, I suffered from depression for more than half my life (I’m nearly 33) and still do I guess, it’s not something that just goes away, but I’m busy weaning off my antidepressants and I’ve never felt better. I’ve learnt that thinking about myself is not a bad trait, take care of yourself first and you’ll find you’re much more able to care for others in every way. Do what you love, no matter how trivial it may seem, if it makes you happy and isn’t harming anyone else, go for, never mind any sort of judgement or inner critique. A happy you is a brighter, more active you and believe me, it’s contagious. Marie’s tips of music, meditation and activity are the perfect recipe. Yoga has transformed the way I see myself, others and the world as a whole. I’m not a devout vegan hippy, but I take what I want and need from the practice and you can start by doing simple exercises at home as Marie says.
    Finally as my mother always told me, the first step is always the hardest, so go forth, try it out, it gets easier. Pain and suffering are unfortunately part of the world and of life, but we can reduce this, we have the power within ourselves. Never hesitate to admit you need a hand from time to time, you may be surprised and how many people relate and offer a little boost when you need it.

    All the best to you and all xx

  29. Sarah

    R, if you feel being an architect is your calling, then you have a duty to yourself and others to continue to do it. If you no longer build, who will inspire others and offer hope especially to other girls and women? Even if your building gets removed, you still have offered hope to others even if for a short period of time. Your buildings may bring joy and distraction for others from the awful things that are occurring in your country. I am sending you hugs and encouragement, and I will be praying for you from a Pennsylvania!

  30. Tanja

    Dear R, dear Marie,

    R, you are strong, you are powerful and I admire your thrive to create amidst circumstances that are impossible to even imagine. I beg you to keep on doing what you’re doing. You are an inspiration to all of us and I’m sure that your actions will make your life greater and impact other people’s lives too.

    Love & Light

    PS: I was just complaining about my costly dentist appointment, when I got the MF newsletter with your story, R, in my inbox.
    I felt ashamed. The world doesn’t need more complaints about ridiculously unimportant things.

    Thank you R, thank you Marie and thank you Universe for this friendly reminder about what matters and what doesn’t!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing, Tanja. We definitely hope R keeps shining her light in the world. We’re so glad this message came at just the right time for you too.

  31. Thank you Marie for your inspiring messages!

    R: Thank you for taking the time to reach out about something that was on your mind and bothering you. Sending you positive vibes and keeping you in my thoughts 🙂

  32. Dear R.,
    The fact that you’re even part of the MF community, tells me you have a spark, a fire and a purpose inside of you! Stay present to your purpose, and the amazing example you undoubtedly are to so many (and you may not even know it)!

    Keep the faith, and never, ever, ever give up!
    with love,

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We definitely second that! Well said. 🙂

  33. Marianne

    Dearest R,
    Our circumstances may be vastly different, but I often suffer from depression. I grew up in the war zone of my family, and everyday I had to fight for the survival of my soul. I finally found my soul’s purpose and my reason for living. Thank (god) everyday that you already know your purpose, to create beauty in the love for your profession. Whether it is here for a moment or forever, it is a unique expression of you and why you are here. Celebrate each moment. Much love, M
    PS read some Lynn McTaggart and the Intention Experiment

  34. Dear R,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story. You are not alone. I will be meditating with you and sending you so much love. Keep fighting, keep loving and keep building.

  35. Hi R,

    Your question resonates and created this space for us to come together and consider as a community. This indicates just some of the power that you have in you, and it makes sense to me that you are an architect, creating thoughtful spaces for others to inhabit, enclosed in the decisions you make manifest into form. Please keep reaching and keep making. I am an artist here in New York/Brooklyn, and concerned about a divisiveness I’ve been witnessing that pushes people apart… what is the work I am now to make in this context? It’s your kind of reaching out that creates spaces for others to reach back and find the connection. You are literally building the spaces that hold people, and that work is vastly important to the world.

    I know so many of us now feel connected to you and are sending warmth and encouraging energy your way. I hope you’ll be doing the 7 day meditation/movement. I’ll be doing it every morning too, in solidarity.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s so true, Kate! In a world that tries to tear people apart, R is creating spaces for humans to gather together. And you’re connecting people with your art too. Thank you for sharing this beautiful perspective!

  36. R. a community a world away is sending you love. Your bravery, your compassion and your wisdom is powerful. You are not alone. <3

  37. Thanks Marie for sharing. Lady in Iraq, it’s amazing to know you have this strong desire within you to achieve so much more in life. Keep going no matter what comes. Like Marie always says, the world needs that special gift in you. Sending you love from Nigeria. Don’t give up.

  38. Glory

    WoW! thank you R and Marie. The video and the question reminded me of a quote “I come as one, I stand as ten thousand” know that we are all sending you good vibes from all over the world and that you are not alone.

    • April

      Thank you for sharing that Quote. I literally sat straight up in my seat when I read it and thought “WOW ~ wow ~ wow~~ How profound!” I think as women we KNOW intuitively that we are ALL one and that we are SO MUCH MORE POWERFUL when we ALL stand together. This is now going to become one of my favorite quotes. Off to see who the author is now…LOL

  39. Dear R,

    I’m sitting here safe and sound in the US and can only imagine what it must be like for you to not only worry that the buildings you create will be destroyed, but that you and/or your loved ones could be killed. After reading the eloquent responses you’ve already received from others, I didn’t think there was any reason to add my own ramblings, but I’ve decided to write anyway.

    I can’t really offer much except a loving kindness meditation from a half world away… May you, and all beings, be safe and free from fear. May you, and all beings, be happy and healthy. May you, and all beings, dwell in peace. And when it feels like meditation is worthless, I’ll meditate anyway.

    In addition, I’ve been trying to challenge myself to find a way to contribute to peacemaking activities in the world. And when it feels like what I do won’t help. I’m going to do it anyway.

    With love,

  40. Michele

    Marie & R, thank you so very much for sharing this Q&A. It is extremely powerful, and Marie, your answer gave me chills. R, I hope you can feel all the love and support we are beaming your way! I echo Marie in saying that you are here for a reason, and never doubt that.

  41. Wendy

    Thank you Marie and R. for sharing.
    R., You show your courage and resilience both by reaching out to the Marie community and by doing what you love, building. You are not alone, collectively as a community, sending you love and lightness.

    When I have that helpless feeling, I am able to move forward by knowing/feeling that I am not alone in this helpless feeling and that if my work can impact just one person, then it is not futile.

  42. Jacine

    Dear R, thank you so much for this question, because I have been brought to a new place and touched so deeply by it, and the answer and insight Marie has given.
    Thank you everyone above for all of your heartfelt replies. Only a week ago I started meditating again (after not doing it for a long time. My “small” excuse? I have been dealing with the subject of impermanence as well, but on a much smaller scale with my living arrangements. This has helped me to put things into a better perspective with renewed vitality.
    I am thinking of you R! You are a courageous soul! I know you can continue to create! One step at a time, seeing the beauty in each tiny movement towards the goals of our hearts.

  43. K

    Just a few words to let you know your words so resonated with me and I’m right there with you. Keep on creating, keep on loving, keep on being who you are. Never, ever give up you are never alone. Sending you lots of love from the U.S!

  44. Marianne

    Thank you, Marie and R., this was one of the most powerful Q & As yet. R., I’m writing from New York City feeling humbled and grateful. I hope you do find the strength to keep creating — you live in a beautiful country and it’s people like you who will keep the spirit of love, hope, perseverance and peace alive there.
    With Love,

  45. Eliza Bulz

    I’m sending all my love to you R, and to those struggling with similar circumstances.
    Create for you first, life is too short to give up on your deepest passions.
    Little habits are great for gently getting you in flow, I find prayer helped me most.
    Art therapy is also a good option, let your feelings guide the brush or pencil.

    I know from experience what you struggle with won’t be simply solved by a comment from a stranger, but I am here for you to say you are special and important and you are making a difference , even if it seems unimportant or small to you.
    All my best

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Eliza! We absolutely second that. <3

  46. samantha Selwyn

    This too shall pass xoxo!!

  47. Michelle

    You have inspired me with your courage and your love for what you do. You have given me a renewed sense of purpose knowing that you face unimaginable circumstances and still have the passion to contribute and create. I will be joining you in meditation and movement.
    You’re never alone. Thank you for inspiring me.

  48. Your questions have inspired us all, my heart goes out to you and I will be here in Costa Rica meditating and dancing ( that’s my exercise!) right along with you. As an artist, I often wonder why am I doing this? Will anyone see it, appreciate it? Will it make a difference in the world? When we follow our passion, whether anyone sees it, whether the building comes tumbling down, whether the store burns down or the studio floods, we have fufilled our destiny, and we are making a difference in the world, not the end product that we created , but who we are as humans fulfilling our destiny. And by reaching out to Marie, and to us, you have touched thousands of lives, as we look at our own lives and our own destiny. Thank you for that,love, Laurel

  49. Ellen Shapiro

    Thanks for this Marie, and R-thank you for reaching out for support. I send you–and hope you can feel–my heartfelt blessings and prayers, and those of the many here who are responding to you.

    I have lived with depression on and off through my life, and what has helped the most for me, is any kind of movement and meditation, especially dance and qigong, and being in nature. Also being in supportive groups of women. It is amazing how powerful and healing it can be to be witnessed by others–even if nothing changes in our circumstances, we can feel very differently knowing we are not alone. If there are one or two others, start a circle, and share together. One final idea, something that always lifts my spirits, is looking for ways to help someone else. That often comes to me naturally in the course of a day, because I teach, coach and counsel people, but everyone can find opportunities to do that–even if it’s just sharing a smile, a nod of recognition, holding a door open. Wishing you healing and the inspiration to keep going and remembering that bringing beauty and shelter to the world is a great gift–that you give through your work. Many blessings to you!

  50. I needed this today. Thank you.
    You aren’t alone. Sometimes it feels like we’re being pummeled when all we want to do is bring good to the world. Good reminder to do it anyway. Take care.

  51. We’re with you R. I’m sure that somewhere there is a window, in a building, that you had a part in, that someone walking by noticed, and it changed them. Your significant contribution might be that one window. Don’t give up. We have ripples.

  52. Marissa Bishop

    Your passion and commitment is beyond inspiring. THANK YOU for sending your message and I send you positive wishes so that you may continue your work–we need your work in this world!
    Much Love from NYC

  53. All you need is inside you. Life force will also guide you regardless your challenges.
    I think you should create for yoursef in the first place and live and express your own beauty.
    Because you deserve it.

  54. Felicity

    My husband and I drove through your beautiful country from Saudi Arabia to Turkey in 1987. The news reports of the devastation there are heartrending. I was born during WW2 in Birmingham, England, during a bombing raid. I want to remind you how wrecked the big cities of the UK were when the war ended. Going back there now, it is hard to believe the streets were once filled with flattened buildings. Your country is going to need architects like you once peace is restored. Human beings are amazingly resilient. Iraq will rebuild itself. Hang on in there and await your time. It will come. I’m a writer and wrote a non-religious Christmas story for Christmas last year. The royalties go to Unicef for the children in the your war torn corner of our Earth. I liked the idea of a Christian festival helping out the Muslim children of Syria and Iraq. So you see, you are not alone. Even if we can’t always help you physically, we are with you in spirit.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so, SO much for sharing, Felicity! You’re absolutely right––humans are resilient and R’s country needs her now more than ever.

  55. Wow!!! This is so spot on. I absolutely love the message you shared. Despite what could happen–DO anyway. So powerful. The phrase that gave me goosebumps and filled me with excitement was the finishing quote, Work is love made visible. <——– THAT is the purpose. It's all about love. Thanks, Marie!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      YES, Brandy! That’s such an empowering, inspiring quote. Thank you for bringing more attention to it because I think it’ll really speak to a lot of people.

  56. Gabriela

    Thank you for all your valuable tips.

  57. Ashley

    Hello R! Unfortunately I don’t have anything super inspiring to tell you but I want to let you know I’m thinking of you and sending love your way! Don’t give up on your passion! “You are whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy”

  58. Jacqui

    Hi R!
    I want you to know that you are not alone! when I have to navigate situations where I felt alone, I would recall and repeat quietly to myself the words of the great sage, Maya Angelou, “…I come as one, but I stand as 10,000.00” You don’t go alone because you can call on ancestors and women who came b/4 you, when dealing with difficult circumstances.
    I send roses your way. Many Blessings

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a powerful quote! Thank you so much for sharing it with us. I hope it’ll bring peace to everyone who reads it here, as it has to you.

  59. Hi Marie, a pleasant good day to you and your crew. You have no idea how much your emails with these snippets of practical wisdom helps people but then again you probably do know.
    Listening to this one about the lady who is dealing with situations outside her control hit home. It motivated me to keep putting the time in and to be grateful more often for the liberties we take for granted.
    After coming back from a week in Honk kong and a short stop in mainland China I have to say wow!!!
    Great country China, loving people, incredible work ethics. I could go on and on.
    With all that being said, I’m so thankful for the United States of America. We’re so blessed. To people around the world, you inspire us a lot. The things that you can’t control because of political and other reasons will strengthen your creativity.
    Thanks Marie for sharing this email. I appreciate this as I start my day. Being 54 yrs present on this planet I’m about to change gears from over 25 yrs in healthcare working with veterans who has dementia to opening this company I founded. Youth Builders International, our mission is “to transform the lives of undeserved youth in our communities through sports arts and entertainment.”
    Much respect and many thanks for such an inspiring forum to learn and grow.

    B School is my next milestone.

    George. Xoxo you all!!

  60. Kimberly

    This segment made me feel (gratitude) weepy & gave me (happy) chills. Years ago I was in a tough place ~ full of dispair…everyday. I knew I had to change something – anything – just do 1 different thing. So one day I began forcing myself to “find the beauty”. It could be anything…clouds, a weed-flower. . .hope in a child’s eyes. All day I would do this. It was hard at first…but I kept at it. This mental practice (over time) caused some sort of “shift”. . .that caused another & another. This “shifting” was how I baby-stepped myself from hell…to hallelujah.☺️

  61. Marie and “R”,

    Wow. These two suggestions are what keep me going day-to-day. In fact, to the point, those days when I choose (an operative word!) to not meditate because I am too busy or lazy or whatever, I am less together, less capable of dealing with daily stress and clearly, not as focused. The meditation provides a break for your busy, busy brain and mind. When combined with movement, at a different time, it is incredible how you feel able to take on the world.

    “R”, most of us cannot begin to imagine what your life is like. Be strong, because you are, keep pursuing that which you feel you should. Take care of yourself and continue to be the strong person you undoubtedly are.

    Thank you

  62. Moh

    The world is upside down, and so are we ! Overwhelmed and left sometimes with less to hope for. That would be true if nobody cared but that’s not the case at all : everybody wishes for peace because everybody wants to live a dignified life no matter so what does it take ? To keep building and rebuilding till it stands once and for all. Because each time we have to redo it, we re getting so proficient at it that we become so expert that we get noticed and looked for till life sooner or later validates the best students we are (the hardest tests for the best students of life as they say) as the best teachers (yep one day what you are learning will be awesomely treasured) ;)! So we deeply pray for you and whoever needs anywhere in this world where support is needed :)!

  63. Katie

    R- Thank you for the passion and love you bring to the work you do. It’s inspiring. Keep creating!

  64. Jarryl

    Actually, we do a good thing is for our willing or target instead of getting the accomplishment from others. So, what shall we do is trust ourselves and make it better. Sometimes I will finish something, but nobody find it or appreciate it. What I can do is changing my mindset to rethink about this, and trust I can learn a lot from it. Then, I feel very well.
    Thanks Marie and R, let me rethink this question:)

  65. Dear R,

    Marie hit the nail on the head…we are here to love as much as we possibly can. I know that despite the hate going on around you, you have love in your heart to give and love will always win the day. We are here for you and we love you too!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Exactly, Meagan! Love wins, and people united by love can never truly be defeated.

  66. Gina Bacon Kerr

    Greetings R, I have worked for several decades in the building industries, helping manage, with architects, the fabrication of their structures. Through these complex processes, I have experienced the magic of true collaborative effort. Long after the effort to complete a structure, the community of respectful alliances, is the true heart of the experience, for me. I hope you step into your next moment forging tried and tested relationships, in the evolution of your work. No bomb can destroy a true crucible of relationships forged by a generous process. Wishing you well, and nurture, in you unique and exquisite challenge.

  67. Julia Arruda

    Marie, as usual, thank you for such an amazing episode!

    Dear R., I hope that by now, after all of the comments that came before me, you can realize that you’re not alone, even though it may seem like it sometimes. I believe that one way or another, on different circumstances, each one of us has felt what you feel today. Carrie Fisher once said “Take your broken heart and make it into art”. Fill your heart and mind with your creativity and enjoy the process. And when you feel as if the inspiration isn’t there, come back online. We’ll always be here to help you out.

    Much love from Brazil!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That Carrie Fisher quote is perfect! Thank you for that beautiful reminder.

  68. Greetings R,

    I’m grateful for your story today – thank you for taking the time to share it publicly. By doing so, you have inspired so many.

    I thought Marie’s advice was spot-on and I hope it helps; to which I can only add that listening to Seth Godin’s “Leap First” is two hours (max) well-spent whenever you need reminding that you must create your art simply because the world needs you to create it. How long it lasts, or how many people see it, does not make your art more or less valuable. Go to and grab a copy.

    I hope that the comments from this community help you realize that of course you are in no way alone. My compliments to the community by the way – in a time where acceptance and compassion seem scarce, remember that the power to change belongs to the few. As of this writing I saw 27 hands go up in support of a stranger….and that’s the most inspiring thing I’ll see today 🙂

    R – It would of course be heartbreaking to build something and see it torn down, but far, far worse to never have built it at all. I’m straight-up plagiarizing when I say this, but you’ve come all this way to find you have something deeply meaningful to share…we need you to share it. I hope that helps in times of uncertainty. Thank you again for your story. You have inspired me more than you know.


  69. Dear R,
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us and my heart goes out to you.
    Although, I have not gone through the same struggles you are going through, I would like to offer you the plan I use to break down problems that appear to be just too huge for me to fix. I hope this works for you too.
    I recognize the problem is out of my control. I try to look at the issue objectively and try to see what my life would be like if that problem did not exist, at that point I need to decide if it is something I want to fix. Most of the time I want to fix this issue and sometimes I don’t.
    If I decide to fix the problem then I try to break the huge problem down into little pieces then think about the steps I need to take to resolve the problem to bring things around.
    I complete 1 step at a time no matter how long it takes. I don’t let myself get distracted or think about the next step. I just keep moving forward one step at a time always keeping my focus on the end result and what my life will be like when the problem is resolved.
    Sometimes this can take a very long time but keep moving forward and don’t get discouraged. Each step you complete toward your goal is empowering and gives you the confidence you need to move on to the next step.
    R, I hope this helps you. I admire you for your courage and your strength.
    Thank you for giving me the chance to be supportive.

  70. Dear Marie,
    Thank you for addressing this question, sharing your wisdom, and creating this forum for people to respond and create.
    Dear R,
    As someone who has struggled with depression my whole life, your question really resonated. I can not imagine the stress of the life you are living. First, know that the depression you are feeling is a perfectly natural response to the chaos around you. Often people who are depressed, feel badly about themselves for succumbing to depression. Second, please know that you are not alone. Isolation is a root cause and an exacerbator of depression. Third, please know that things will get better. You may not see how they can, but they will. Depression lingers and intensifies when you have no hope or change or improvement. Fourth, I wanted to share some things that have worked for me:
    1. Morning Pages – every day I journal for 30 minutes in a stream of consciousness about whatever is on my mind. (This practice comes from Julia Cameron’s “The Artist’s Way.”)
    2. Yoga – I try to practice a few minutes everyday if I can’t get to a class. The focus on the breathing and getting the postures right gets me completely out of my head.
    3. Community – reach out to friends and create a group of people who are having a similar experience to share where you are. Schedule a weekly call if you can’t meet in person where you can connect, share your stories and coach each other.
    4. Look for the lessons in each of your hardships and your inner strengths that got you through each experience. Celebrate what you have learned.
    5. Acknowledge the pain of loss of each situation. Whatever emotion you resist, persists. It lingers when you don’t allow yourself to feel it.
    6. Know that for loss, every void created in your life, is also creating the space for something new. In your case, every building that is destroyed allows you to create something new in its place. This means that you will always have the opportunity to create.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      These are all really excellent, spot on tips, Spencer! Thank you for outlining them for us. It’s wonderful to hear how they helped you and I hope R and others in our community will find them helpful too.

  71. Dear R: I’m going to share something beautiful: “Health does not always come from medicine. Most of the time it comes from Peace of Mind, Peace in the Heart, Peace of Soul. It comes from laughter and love.” Health isn’t just about the physicality, and remember Kahil Gibran’s words–YOU are making love visible. Love, Hugs and Positive Thoughts to you.

  72. Erika

    Hi Marie! Thank you so much for sharing your heart and R’s question. R. Thank you for your transparency. I am praying for you and sending you lots of love and light. As you can see you are not alone. The most important thing you did was to not isolate yourself and suffer alone. Instead you inspired me because you reached out. We are standing with you!

  73. R,
    Stay Strong! Keep building!

  74. Johanna

    Dear R.,
    it is strange where the law of cause and effect can bring us. This is the only place where we can become aware of our thoughts and actions, and speaking, and send love into our world, even so that seems sometimes impossible.
    Thank You so much for Your impact and questions, as i was at a similar point of helplessness, even so i am in another situation, which is also cruel. But You reminded me on the only way out is Love, starting with loving You self, and do things that are good for You. And so for others. Love. Jo.

  75. Thank you so much for this letter, R. Every time I hear about another bomb going off in Iraq, my heart breaks with helplessness and the futile longing to connect. You have done all of us an enormous favor by giving us the chance to send our love.
    As an artist and designer who has thrown decades of work into dumpsters, I have come to understand that the value of work is in the doing. What I live for are the moments when I am in flow–when time stops, when I move with the grace of inspiration and everything feels effortless. It often takes a lot of effort to get there, but the moments when it happens make everything else worthwhile.
    I know that you must experience this state, by what you have written in your letter. I believe that on the level of spirit, nothing we create can be destroyed, and everything we learn stays with us to be used for a higher purpose.
    Much love.

  76. Reaching out to the architect in Iraq with heartfelt support. So good you reached out for connection. Over the years I have learned to “shake hands” with my fear and accept it as part of me. It doesn’t go away and I have more control. Sometimes I even thank it when it shows up and it is a good thing. Wishing you the best and sending hugs.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s really smart, Penny! I love the idea of shaking hands with fear. It may be impossible to be truly fearless, though we don’t have to let fear dictate our every decision.

  77. Dear R, I too am facing a great time of uncertainty and fear. My heart beats with yours. What I hang onto is the belief that I was given my gifts and my heart to share with the world and make it better. The power is in the giving and the intention. What the world does with what I offer is it’s own business. I wish you love, light and peace. Xoxo Sara in Texas

    • Kristen

      Sara, I love your comment — it really inspires and resonates with me. Thank you!

  78. Tal

    R., thank you for writing in and asking your question. As many of the comments here already noted, your letter has inspired so many of us because we know what it’s like to feel that way. You are definitely not alone.

    As someone who has worked in the building industry, I cannot stress enough how you must continue to keep doing your work. Your passion and love for architecture is very much needed, especially as a woman architect. The field is lacking this perspective of architecture, and I don’t know how it is over there, but here in North America it is still very much predominantly men who design our buildings. While this has created many great architectural works, I believe we need more woman architects who can show us to build another way and inspire little girls all over the world that yes, we can build and design our spaces too. Continue to do your work from that fierce heart space. The world needs more architects like you.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We totally agree, Tal! I hope more women and girls will be inspired by R and know that they too can build buildings, create cities, and make the skyline their canvas. 🙂

  79. R-So many people have been touched by your question, your hope for the future and your love of life is clear, based solely on your question in the midst of your circumstances. I recently started looking at different meditation sessions on YouTube and there are some great ones, that provide almost immediate uplifting results from one session. Marie’s answer and so many other readers helpful suggestions hopefully will help you to continue the good work you are doing. Being an interior designer, I have felt sometimes that the work I am doing is trivial in comparison to all of the problems in the world, and the situations/causes that are in need of people to help solve or make better. Then I try to remember that God has given these talents to me for a reason and in some small way I am doing good by creating some kind of beauty in the place that I have been put. Stay strong in your beliefs and keep creating useful and beautiful spaces, you are making a difference.

  80. R, your story and Marie’s video is particularly inspiring to me today. Your expressed struggles, beyond your control, tells me how much your world really needs you. Your efforts for a better life must continue because our cultures around the world depend on visionaries like you for survival.
    This weekend, I experienced a huge failure when my wellness conference, open to the public, had only 25 attendees. I have never given a party where no one showed up. So I am processing a huge piece of humble pie, then I will regroup and reorganize.
    The world so desperately needs us, R.

    • Dear Suzie,

      Ouch! I hear you sister.

      Late last year I organized my first ever workshop. The ‘prompt’ was I needed the income.

      And I had to cancel it due to insufficient interest – I was actually going to lose money if I went ahead with it. Not great, BUT so many good things came out of the experience.

      My big slice of humble pie included realizing I had been quite unrealistic with my pricing – which was too high for my current place in the market.

      AND very importantly the process really highlighted the blockages in my sales funnel – which I knew where there, but the experience showed I couldn’t keep ignoring them and had to take action on releasing these blocks.

      I also learned many things about organizing and promoting an event which will make next time a lot easier.

      And, to my joy, someone who saw my workshop promotion offered me a 50 minute $2,000 speaking gig.

      So I applaud your courage, and hope and expect that your humble pie is as valuable as mine was.

      Here’s to moving onto a better quality of mistake.


  81. Wow Marie, this episode really struck a chord.

    R. Thank you for being brave and speaking up and asking for support. My heart goes out to you. Sending you tons of love. Stay brave and create!!


  82. M

    Dear R,

    Although there is no way to know how long any building will last, and nothing lasts forever (except love), one thing is for sure: if you do not build it, it is guaranteed to not exist at all. Your story is both humbling and inspiring. I will be joining you in meditation each day.

    Sending you love from Toronto, Canada,


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So well said, M! Thank you for your words of encouragement.

  83. Jon W

    The haters
    and the bullies and the fighters
    and the terrorists–do you know
    why they hate?
    why they destroy?
    It’s because of the light,
    the light that’s inside of you
    and inside of them.
    They are afraid of that light,
    of what it can do and what it can make,
    of the love it can show.
    They can’t risk letting anyone
    see their light.
    So it’s up to you
    to love with that light
    to build
    to show them
    that only you–not them, not anyone–
    have the power to turn off
    your light.
    I haven’t written a poem in years. But R, your story inspired me to write that. Thank you for sharing your story.

    There’s a speech by Theodore Roosevelt called “The Man in the Arena.” I encourage you to Google that and read it. It’s one of my favorite speeches, and it applies so much to your situation.

    Thank you again for sharing, and lot of love

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Love it, Jon! I’m so glad you were inspired to write a poem and I know R will be happy to see it. Thank you for shining your light.

  84. Nihal Schawky

    Dear R
    I heard Marie and then read all the above comments. How wonderful our world is! still full of caring encouraging people. One blessing to count and it will lead you to many more. One quote that helped me deeply “it is what it is” for all of us with whatever we are experiencing. I know in my heart that God or the universe is fair no matter what we experience. So if we just keep the trust that even in the hardest of times we still have a choice. We can choose our inner world of peace and hope. And we can tap into all this positivety at the tip of our fingers. The advice of meditation and movement are great tools that help our mood indirectly. I always believe short term suffering and taking the wise steps now will only lead us to the best of places long term. Will keep you and all this wonderful Marie community close in my heart and prayers. I have no doubt that if we live today and make the best out of it as is our tomorrows will keep getting better if not in the outside world for sure in our inside one ?????

  85. Jon W

    The haters
    and the bullies and the fighters
    and the terrorists–do you know
    why they hate?
    why they destroy?
    It’s because of the light,
    the light that’s inside of you
    and inside of them.
    They are afraid of that light,
    of what it can do and what it can make,
    of the love it can show.
    They can’t risk letting anyone
    see their light.
    So it’s up to you
    to love with that light
    to build
    to show them
    that only you–not them, not anyone–
    have the power to turn off
    your light.
    I haven’t written a poem in years. But R, your story inspired me to write that. Thank you for sharing your story.

    There’s a speech by Theodore Roosevelt called “The Man in the Arena.” I encourage you to Google that and read it. It’s one of my favorite speeches of all time, and it applies so much to your situation.

    Thank you again for sharing, and lots of love

  86. R,

    Salam Alaikum, Habibi/ti!!

    Greetings from San Diego, my husband is Iraqi and loves his country and his people and is working to build a solution that improves the safety, security, and livelihoods of everyone in Iraq, including his family and friends. His time in America has taught him how people from every walk of life can live together peacefully and in harmony and will continue working until he has achieved this in Iraq. Just know that there are people on your side all over the world, and you are not alone!


  87. Aloha Miss Marie,
    I am grateful for your Tuesday “pump”! After I listened to your “vlog”? I tweeted it and then I had inspiration:
    I encourage you to investigate
    I wrote a screenplay about your topic today and without Paraliminals I don’t know if I’d be “still standing”
    Paul Scheele might be someone you would like to interview…to continue your good works helping people.
    Mahalo for listening.

  88. Luce

    Thank you Marie for another great segment. Your insights are so helpful.

    Hi R, your story really moved me. Know that you are not alone and You are in my thoughts and prayers. Marie gave you some very helpful actionable ideas that I will practice as well I.e meditation and movement. I will add that Oprah always says that when you feel alone and depressed and that life is against you, reach out for someone and help that person. This simple step will lift your spirit and give you the strength to go on. XX

  89. Jana Larkin

    Dear R,
    Thank you for writing to Marie and for being so honest. So many of us have similar feelings and yet we haven’t reached out as you have. Thank you. Marie’s response helped me so much and I imagine you feel the same. I was in a car accident four days ago and while I walked a way from it with little injury, I’m unsettled and feeling depressed. After hearing your story and Marie’s response, I choose to have courage and to move forward. Thank you for sharing. You are in my prayers. Love from Chicago!

  90. Jana Larkin

    Dear R,
    Thank you for writing to Marie and for being so honest. So many of us have similar feelings and yet we haven’t reached out as you have. Thank you. Marie’s response helped me so much and I imagine you feel the same. I was in a car accident four days ago and while I walked a way from it with little injury, I’m unsettled and feeling depressed. After hearing your story and Marie’s response, I choose to have courage and to move forward. Thank you for sharing. You are in my prayers. Love from Chicago!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I’m so sorry you were in a car accident, Jana! But I’m really glad you’re okay and that this episode came at just the right time to help you feel better. Sending love your way!

  91. Marie, thank you for this episode.
    R, you are not alone. I am sending you incredible love and energy. Thank you for the beautiful work you are doing in Iraq. It matters. You matter. We are here with you.


  92. R. — Sending you a big hug and much love. Your question has me thinking, feeling, expanding today. You are a light.

    (And on Marie’s 2nd question: One thing I’m finding helpful is remembering how bad I feel when I’m not writing and creating. It may feel like it’s for nothing, and yet when I’m not doing it, I somehow feel even worse. Even if the creation seems futile “out there,” inside it always offers me so much.)

    Thanks, Marie and Team Forleo!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a good point, Robin! Creating things can be painful sometimes, especially when our creations aren’t valued or are destroyed, but not creating hurts so much more because we’re going against our nature and defying our calling.

  93. Safena

    R, it’s amazing to me that just being you has touched so many people here. You made Irak personal and has bridged a gap by sharing what is in your heart and soul. Thank you for allowing us to imagine you loving what you do and I suspect who you are in the midst of the unimaginable. I feel myself more connected to you and when I hear the news i will care for you and now the all. I hope this makes sense how your reaching out to this community has changed lives. You built a bridge…that will never be broken. Love to you. Marie I felt your ❤️!!

  94. Anto

    Hello R,
    The thought of you makes my chest feel ripped open. Your story is in a concrete way the story of humanity, the archetypical Sisyphus. Even though everything we do is ephemeral, I believe we are connected to eternity by a God who notices, treasures our lives deeply, and is safekeeping the love we put in this world. No tear goes unseen, no hair falls without witness. And the lives of the people you touch with your example and courage are more precious than centuries of archeological delight.

  95. Keep in touch R – with Marie – and your words will reach all who listen –
    making a direct, human connection between us,
    You are being heard – You are making a difference in our lives today,
    In meditation we connect in silence – to open our eyes and see the beauty,
    In movement/music we connect – to find our joy…….,
    Love is the way…… Kikki

  96. Jennifer

    Dear Beautiful R.,
    War is a very ugly part of humanity and although I cannot relate to your exact experience, I can tell you that if you carry peace in your heart you’ll not only bring it to yourself but to others as well. Find a way to always go inside and find the light within you. It’s filled with love, hope, stillness, peace. I am praying for you and sending you a very warm hug. God bless you…

  97. Beautiful . . . we must remember that we live moment to moment and if in that moment we cross paths and see the beauty you or someone else has created, our lives are enriched. It would be a darker world should you or anyone else give in. We must press on, we must create, and we must share the love and light of what we do. Thank you Marie, thank you “R” . . . you’ve made this moment a beautiful moment.

  98. Gayla Drake

    Beautiful episode!
    R, you are not alone; there are so many people in the world praying for peace, for an end to the war that is tearing your country apart. Knowing you are there will be a focal point for my Light Language Group – we create grids of sacred geometry in specific color frequencies that insert desires and commands into the Universal Flow and Code of Light and Abundance. We meet again in 2 weeks, and I will be bringing your story to the group for some work. Promise.
    As for the second part, being a woman over 50 I often feel marginalized and ignored, like I am on a downward slope and nothing I do is perceived as being relevant. I have abilities, gifts and talents that I crave to share, and luckily I earned a high enough level of respect when I was “young and relevant” to carry over to a point – but find myself frequently passed over in favor of younger women for events, presentations, and concert opportunities. This is a paradigm I know millions of women are beating their heads against daily. In fact, #heymarie, here’s my Q: How about some help for women in their “Fullness Years” to overcome the stigma of age so we don’t have to work so damn hard to offer our gifts and have our knowledge appreciated. Even “wisdom” seems to be a dirty word sometimes. 50 is FAR from over the hill. In fact, if anything the mountains I want to climb are steeper and taller and cooler than ever. I will never stop learning, stop training, stop working hard at getting better at what I do every day. I have so much experience and, yes, wisdom, that I love to share with younger women, and being overlooked because of having lived all that TIME that it took to GET that wisdom is stupid frustrating! I don’t want to pretend I’m younger than I am, I want to be as authentic as I can be, no more pretending and hiding! Do you have any insight? I know I can trust you to take this on with passion- and compassion. Thank you always for everything you do to make the world a kinder, smarter, more livable place.
    Love and Light –

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      This is such an excellent question, Gayla! If you’ll write to us at infoATmarieforleoDOTcom we’ll be happy to help you submit it for consideration for a future Q&A Tuesday.

  99. Wally Barr

    R, If not you then who? Q: How do you eat an elephant? A: One bite at a time!
    The problem did not get to where it is over night. The solution is not going to happen over night either! Much love.

  100. Thank you so much for reaching out, R. I wish you love and courage through the times you are enduring. Thank you, Marie for connecting us all! This was very needed and powerful!

  101. Amber Jane Arquette

    R., when I am feeling alone and that I have no control, I know that I need to grab my spiritual/self care first aid kit. In this kit are lots of things/actions that Marie talks about, anything that lights you up and fills your cup or re-connects us to something bigger.

    Write a JOY List, have music available for dance and meditation, have a spiritual practice and journal. Take baths, I use pure essential oils multiple times a day. CONNECT with others, join a support group, a craft group, a friends circle (on-line or not). Make sure you have some people you can call when you are down. And of course balance out with processing the feelings, so we can let them go. Write thank you cards to those you have to thank. Create art or plant something. What book moves you? Get a massage, or have a lovely desert out. What really brings you back into feeling centered, grounded and connected to your heart. Write or “put: that “in” your Spiritual Self Care Emergency Kit. This kit can be just in your mind, AND it should be at least written on paper so that you can grab it anytime and read off the items. You can even refer to this list when you are setting up your schedule, go ahead and schedule this time in BEFORE break down, so that you can re-fuel along the way! Many blessings to you.

  102. Thank you Marie for adressing R’s question. And thank you R for reaching out. It is the power of your creative force that touched my heart. I think on our day by day we are not aware of the power of our love and creativity. We think the hard facts, the walls, the bombs, the political bla bla has power. Listening to Marie reading your question and how you describe your work and the love for what you do and how you create, I realized that THIS is our true power. Before our very eyes brutality can seem to destroy it all. But it will never alter the strong stream of love. I am sending my love to you and your people. I admire your fierce heart. Thanks for inspiring mine. You are not alone.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Right on, Andrea! Love wins in the end. 🙂

  103. Bonjour “R”! First i don’t know what to say. But if just few words from every where in the world can encourage you to continue so, i’ m going to put mine.
    I think that people like you, who still going even if they live terrible moment, are changing the world. Step by step. If we keep going to make are dream come true, we gonna change the world for the best!

  104. Thank you R for opening up and reminding us all to live and love fully while we’re here. I’m sending you and your country warmth from Southern California, and hopes for healing.

    As always, thank you Marie for your much needed wisdom and huge heart. You’re a gift in this crazy world. Love you!

  105. Hi R,

    First I have to say I admire you and your profession, becoming an architect is a long term goal of my own and I have so much respect for the field. I am sorry you are feeling alone. Just know many people have now taken a moment to think of you, imagine your pain, and are coming alongside you at least mentally.
    Finally, I kept thinking of the idea of wedding cakes- so much time and skill goes into creating them, and then in just a few moments they’re cut to pieces. Not that we want that to happen to buildings obviously. But beauty and things we build are a gift to the world, an act of kindness i think. They give people a moment of wonder. I think it’s amazing you have the power to create and build.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s a really good analogy, Stephanie! Knowing the cake will be eaten doesn’t discourage the baker and the cake’s inability to last doesn’t mean it should have never been created. It’s still a valid, gorgeous way to create and share beauty with the world.

  106. I went to a zen retreat on life vows in January 2013. In the middle of one of our meditation times, the monk made a reflection that went straight to my core and that I wish I could repeat with the same solemnity, wording and depth. He said that having clear life vows needs a lot of courage because your life vows will take you to places where you can practice those vows. So, if your vow is to love every human being, your are probably going to find yourself in places where there is no much love, how else can you practice your vows? how else can you give what you are meant to give? R you have a passion for architecture and constructing and you live in a place where there is so much destruction. I admire the courage and love that you have to construct in the middle of destruction, and at the same time I am sure that the impact that you are having is far deeper than the impact you would anywhere else in the world. I send you my love and admiration, we are with you.

    • marilyn haverly

      Thank you for sharing that monk’s reflection. I’m going to remember that and be glad for the encouragement it gives when I feel resistance or overwhelm. Makes perfect sense that we will find ourselves in circumstances and situations that make possible living our intentions!

  107. Anne-Kirstine Klitmark

    Thank you for discussing this question with humbleness and upliftment.
    To R, I agree with Marie, that you are here with a purpose.
    What keeps me going when I feel to give up, is I check in with what I am doing and knowing it is my calling, I keep going.
    Much love to community, that I am grateful to be a part of.

  108. Beautiful advice Marie! Dear R, I do not know the terror you are going through but I know the woman of your country are strong. This might seem like a weird analogy to bring up on this topic but I have children and I have given them wings. This is hard for a parent, to let kids grow up (not to mention the worry that comes along with finally setting them free out in the world). I guess in a way we created the babies but don’t have the babies forever, nor control over these people we created. But I do have beautiful memories of my babies in my head and in my heart. Although they are no longer under my roof or under my daily care as they were when they were little children, every day I pray that my adult children are safe and happy and healthy. That’s all I can do, “Let go – Let God”. Whether you pray or meditate, Marie’s advice is perfect. Keep on creating. If they tear down your architecture, you will always have the joy of the beauty you created in your head and heart and they can’t take that from you.

  109. Monique

    A love-full episode Marie and R. Even though circumstances don’t define who we are they can be a detriment in our ability to express love in our lives.

    R., a new building expresses hope in its structure for a better tomorrow. It is also a message that says to others – we are still strong and beautiful and can make of this world a better place to live in.

    I found myself a few times at the threshold of suicide until I saw, from the corner of my eyes, a young child looking at me while myself on the point to jump in a freezing river with a strong current. For a split second I thought “I cannot do this to this child”. I knew then that the reason we are here is to offer hope, resilience and examples of love. The child then smiled at me.

    Your work, R. is so important since you never know when it will inspire someone to go on with hope while looking at your creation. It might even create a smile in their heart and this would be enough for them to go on. Your life work is precious.

    • Dear Monique,
      I’m so glad you are still here with us and able to talk about your experience – dispelling the loneliness and spreading the hope.

      • Monique

        Thanks Rebecca! There is so much that can be done, and very simply, to help someone to see the beauty and importance of what they do. I was in Paris and asked a woman in the metro who was attending people “how do you do this morning?”. She froze not knowing what to say. To me to add “you might not have a lot of people asking you this”, she said “indeed people are too busy running”. I smiled, she smiled and then I asked my question since I was lost:-) in this big town.

        • Yes, I think that speaks to the power of ‘simply’ telling people – metaphorically or literally – ” I see you, I hear you, you matter, you count”

          I hear you Monique

  110. Thank you for this inspiring question.

    We are never alone, there is always someone close to support us if we open our being to sharing. I have experienced it in my travels to the other side of the world, there is always someone behind the door, present to answer a sincere smile.
    We are all here to love and share .. even though sometimes we have the feeling that we are abandoned by all and that nothing is sincere.

    When I do what I feel called to do, I sometimes tell myself that it is futile. But above that, there is the certainty that if I have brought comfort, lit spark of hope, strength to continue or appeased, even a single person, during a day that life gives me, then I acted for a greater good than me, which lasted beyond my existence and will change in a certain way the face of the world.

  111. Diana

    Dear R.,
    You are an inspiration to me. I can only imagine the difficult circumstances you are living in and it breaks my heart. You have received training and have become an architect amidst all the difficulty-you are amazing!
    Know that you are supported by your sisters all around the world. We all send you love and support. Don’t give up. You are a light for others. Much love to you R. I will be praying for you daily.

  112. Tina Huston

    I live in Douglas County, Colorado. In all of my living days, I have never come across a local government as corrupt as this one. They are on the side of developers, business, and money and will hurt, control, and even try to destroy, anyone in their way to the point of consistently breaking the law. My home and business has been under their threat in the past and is under their threat, again, because of a developer who wants to put high-density housing in a rural area. This type of development is outside of the county’s state-mandated master plan, yet, the county commissioners have cut deals with the developers and have no conscience about pushing local farmers out and trampling on the civil rights of the local people. This type of harassment wastes so much time. I have to fight my local govt…again. I won before and I’ll win again, but not without the loss of a lot of resources. It makes me want to say…GRRRRRRR!

  113. We stand with you. You are not alone. You’ll get through this. One step at a time.

  114. Gwenn McGuire


    I don’t know you personally, but I don’t have to! We are all connected, I am you and you are me. I LOVE YOU! I BELIEVE IN YOU! There are people around you looking for you to push through. They are looking for you to use your God given gifts to help inspire and push them forward. There are people who are counting on you to be true to yourself. I am counting on you, because one day I want to visit and marvel at your work.

    XOXO- Gwenn M!

  115. Dearest R.,

    I can’t imagine what you witness and experience on a daily basis. You are so brave to continue creating in the midst of such chaos. And Marie made some wonderful suggestions with the meditation and the reminder that, indeed, nothing lasts.

    May I offer this. You said that you love what you do and that in itself is reason to do it. Cultivating happiness and joy within yourself radiates out into the world, bringing about change you may not anticipate.

    Secondly, you are creating beautiful buildings where people connect, grow, and learn. How special is that? We have all come across spaces that inspire us, whether they are ancient ruins or a new, high tech office building. You are a part of that legacy and that is something to be very proud of.

    And, yes, your building may be destroyed, but that means it has somehow served its purpose for you or for the world. As a composer and writer, I often have to be reminded that, while what I create may not necessarily be intended to inspire millions, if anyone at all, it is part of the bigger plan.

    But you must keep creating! You must keep bringing beauty and light into this world! And, hopefully, someday, those who seek destruction will look upon one of your glorious structures, see the divinity within it and themselves, and it will remain standing.

    Sending much love!


    • Caroline - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Tiffany ♥

  116. R., sending you lots of love, peace and light. Don’t give up! I’m pulling for you!

  117. Maria

    R, thank you for asking this question. I send you my thoughts and hope tomorrow will be better for you.
    Lots of love

  118. Jäz

    First of all it is great how Marie, your platform makes visible how we are all connected and makes it more easy to reach out and feel that.
    R, thank you for what you have sparked. When we have everything – like freedom, peace, a home – we get so caught up in details that really don´t matter and it is healthy to step away from that and see. You are so brave and I hope and pray humanity will come to it´s senses soon enough. We all are trying to add to this, right?

    R the first thing that came to my mind was Wow, she actually made the experience of building buildings. It means you express yourself and you have a mirror of what you are capable of. The experience of having a building as materialized proof of your output is amazing.
    Not everyone can say that. To be able to look at your own creation is truly a gift and blessing.
    Of course I understand the circumstances are enourmously challenging for you and yes it would be nicer to know they are there to stay. But hold on to the good qualities you get to experience while building. Those experiences will be available to others too. This way we make sure we create more nurturing examples than destructive ones!
    Love and Energy from Berlin.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Well said, Jaz! Thank you for sharing this encouraging message with R and all of us. 🙂

  119. Dear R,
    What I had learned through many unfortunate events in professional and personal life is that those unfortunate events built up my stronger brighter more resilient self into the best version of me. Within the struggle and pain lies the seed of the same size glory. Learn how to transform your own personal disadvantages into your unique strenghts and the world will be yours. You had started well.
    Three years ago my own green architecture company went bankrupt, I was stolen by my own employees, and found out I was pregnant and with no support from the other party… I’d never imagine that I would move to the US with an “extraordinary achievements” working visa with my toddler girl, to work for a green company and have peace of mind and emotional and financial stability for the first time in many years…
    Just hang in there! it will get better!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Wonderful, Cynt! I’m so happy things are going well for you and that you’re the best version of yourself. We hope the same will happen for R!

  120. Morgan Bau

    I cannot begin to compare my circumstances with yours o.k. a war ravaged nation. However I am completely familiar with the feeling of pointlessness in my work which I love. I am a speech pathologist in the schools and entered the field wanting took make a difference in the lives of others, however now I feel I am merely an employee pushing a public agenda and filling out paperwork. Often the decision to enter the day and go to work comes down to knowing deep deep down that we don’t control all the variable we would like to but LIFE demands that we push on anyway. Showing up is half of the battle. It’ss like a plant that pushes through the cracks in the pavement. I often think “How did that grow without sun or perfect surroundings?” It siply is programmed by God to live despite the circumstances. You are amazing to seek clarity of purpose under dire circumstances.
    All the best to you. Morgan

  121. Kat

    This episode went right into my heart. I cried actually… I’m a new mom (my baby is 5 months old) and I’m slowly coming back to my coaching business. I wanted to give up. Today I said to myself: I have no energy to do both baby and business. I was ready to give up.

    And then I saw your episode Marie and it gave me hope. I’m going to do both meditation and movement for the next 7 days. I feel that’s what I need.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So happy to hear that, Kat! I’m so glad you’re not giving up on your dream. We believe in you! 🙂

  122. Marie,
    One of the most difficult things I have ever done is complete Joshua Rosenthal’s Health Coach Certification program. As part of the curriculum the school provides a website which the student creates on their own with the help of the liveedit staff. Handsdown, creating the website and graduating were the most difficult things I have done in my life. The course takes 1 year to complete and I graduated this past January.
    Most of my family and friends were then and continue to be unsupportive throughout this entire endeavor. As soon as their negativity began I found myself thinking that they were right, I should just quit. I realized that throughout my entire life when my family and friends were negative and unsupportive, I just quit. This time, I would not let myself quit. I finaly understand that what other people think about me does not matter. My opinion about myself is what matters and I am tired of feeling like a quitter! I decided to ignore the negativity and complete something so important to me. I am so glad I did because now I have the confidence to keep moving forward no matter what. I finished the website which came out pretty good for first timer and I have my Health Coach Certification. Now I am working on building my business while still working my day job but that is another story. Thank you for letting me share.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Congrats on your health coach certification, Mary! Your opinion of yourself is the only one that matters and I’m so glad you followed your dreams. Go you!

  123. R,

    You are so incredibly brave. Thank you for sharing your struggle. You are definitely not alone. All I have ever wanted was to have and give my love to a family. I had that, almost picture perfect, then, some unthinkable things happened. I have struggled to be brave enough to give 100% of my self the way I did before, knowing it could just be “taken away” again. In you sharing your struggle, you helped me unlock that last piece of fear I had held onto. Marie is correct, if it hadn’t been for yoga, meditation, prayer and essential oils, I would not have survived my family’s darkest days. Peace, love and light be yours.

  124. Jelena

    Dear R,
    I’ve been pondering the same questions for the majority of my life. I was born in a country that doesn’t exist any more. The war started when I was seven. At eleven, I learned that my uncle died, having secretly joined the army. I wrote a story about him two years ago, and a week later, I found myself in a Parisian café, celebrating a friend’s birthday, and then we learned of the terrorist attacks, and had to hide, which brought back all the pain, and the memories of hiding in basements and long nights of air raids, all of the things I hoped never to experience again.
    This feeling of powerlessness and of uncertainty is the most difficult part of being human. But it helps to realize that this is also the invisible connection that links us all. So know that you are not alone, dear R.
    We can choose to build or we can choose to destroy. And you, you are an architect, a builder. So keep on doing that because that’s what you love. Pour all of your love into it, and try to love it for the process, not the product. It may last, or it may not. But even if it doesn’t , someone will have seen it, someone that you don’t know will be touched by it in ways you cannot foresee.
    In my teenage years, I was very depressed and often thought I would end it all. But then I came across Hesse’s Steppenwolf, and this book changed everything for me. Even though it was burned by the Nazis, the book somehow made its way to me, and saved me. Hesse could have given up, and wondered what was the point, but he didn’t and that is probably the reason why I’m still here.
    M train by Patti Smith is a book I would recommend when you are feeling this way. She knows about loss and about impermanence, but she also knows about love, and art and beauty, and about keeping that sense of wonder among the chaos of existence.
    Stay strong and courageous, dear R. I hope to see your buildings one day.
    With love and gratitude,

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing your heart, Jelena. I’m so sorry to hear of the hardships you’ve endured, though it sounds like you know exactly how R is feeling and I know she’s thankful for your support.
      Thank you for the book recommendations as well. We’re sending buckets of love your way too.

  125. R. thanks for sharing your fears and struggles. I am a small business owner in the U.S. and currently I’m trying to keep my new business afloat. I have a wife and two small children and worry that I’m not going to be able to provide for them. It is easy to get down when it feels like there is nothing to show for all of the work you’ve done.
    I have been helped by remembering that my identity is not based on my productivity. I’m still able to contribute to those around me by showing them love and by giving whatever I can – whether it be my time or just simple kindness. What is lasting is the impression that you make on the people that you encounter. Your true power is in the people that you surround yourself with. Those relationships will feed your sense of purpose and lift you up when you feel like your work is going nowhere. I’ve been able to stay energized in my career because of the strong relationships I have maintained outside of work. Remember not to isolate yourself but reach out to those around you.

  126. The only thing constant in life is change. I remember how crushed I was to shut down my real estate appraisal business after investing close to 9 years and well over $100,000 building it up. But, on the bright side, it lead me to earning 3 degrees and admission to law school (half way done), a career in teaching- which has been insightful as to the human experience, and a new zest for entrepreneurship.

    One of my takeaways from starting over is this, love the journey and each chapter of your story more than the travel destination. Keep your head up and follow Marie’s advice (exercise and meditation are truly valuable).

    Warm wishes,

  127. Thank you for this platform with Marie and the thousands of other women who share their experiences in life….we have all been in the same boat one way or another, we all share the weal and woe of life and its just very comforting to know we are not alone. With technology within our reach, we are somehow supported by the other’s encouragement and the most heartfelt empathy from those who have been there….
    Call it meditation or prayer, that exactly is one powerful way i cope with my personal concerns. We all need some solitude or quiet moments to simply ponder on the more essential and fundamental truths in life to see the wider perspective. May I also add though, that after some introspection, it also helps to go out of our way to help and reach out to others so we don’t simply end up cocooned with our own worries. Its another great way to discover there is so much more we can give. Hang in there and keep going.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So true, Tesa. Balancing quiet moments with time spent connecting with others is vital. I’m glad that’s been helpful in your own life too!

  128. Mary Beth

    What came to mind as I listened to the story is the proverb that he who is faithful in little will be faithful in much. Our job is to be faithful where we are and that opens the door for more, whether it’s with what we have now or with what will come as result of our faithfulness. All the best –

  129. Blessings to you, R. You are in my heart. Your question has made me so aware of how fortunate I am. I’m grateful to you.

    I hope it will be possible for you to try the two things Marie suggested. I know they help me.

    Sending you so much love and support,

  130. Thank you Marie and R.

    R, when you stated that your love being an architect, you really touched me. Passion for work that contributes to the larger world is important. I hope it’s encouraging to you to know that you’ve just encouraged me. I’m facing the possible end of a 17 year marriage….and rekindling my passion for my work seems the only way to light the path in front of me. I’m an 3D animator and jewelry designer. The distraction of my broken marriage has taken the lion’s share of my energy. Not today. I hear of your struggle and your strength to know and follow your passion anyway—and that is inspiring me. I am going to meditate, and do some movement and dedicate my day you, R., on the other side of our shared world. Blessings to all.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I’m really sorry you’re going through a tough time right now too, Kelebek. We hope you’ll find solace in your art and that things will get better soon.

      • Thank you, Mandy! I appreciate the comment–reminds me that the world is full of caring people with energetic support. Together we are strong. ?

  131. Hey R,
    You’re amazing – I feel so blessed to know there are people like you in this world.
    Thank you
    All my love
    Maddy x

  132. Donna


    Know I am sending lots of LOVE, LIGHT and HEALING!!!

  133. Dear R,
    Thank you for sharing what you are experiencing worlds away from many of us. I can’t even begin to fathom what it must be like to live where you are and my heart goes out to you. From your question, it is obvious that you are a strong, passionate person. When I was going through depression the one thing that helped me was practicing gratitude daily. It is now the cornerstone of my business. It was the tool that helped me come out of depression and live a love-filled life. I know at times it might seem like there is very little to be grateful for, but finding something small to focus on each day has amazing power to recharge you physically and motivate you to do other things that make you feel good. I wish you peace on your journey ahead, something good always comes from our struggles if we focus on our inner strength, wisdom and love. Stay safe.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      You’re so right, Lorraine! Gratitude really does make all the difference.

  134. Marlowie Hatulan

    Truly inspiring, Thank you Marie for keeping me on the loop.
    And R, thank you for your courage and the wisdom brought about by your story.
    Remember, your role as a chief builder has never failed you, take the best view from the top. Assess and re-build yourself out of these blocks of comments that is gradually changing your way of life today.

  135. “Have you ever felt discouraged, disheartened or even depressed by the turmoil and uncertainty that surround you?
    When we’re engulfed in circumstances that feel beyond our control, finding the strength and courage to keep going isn’t always easy. Understandably, we can feel helpless and alone.”
    Well, that has been me for more than a four years and thank you for sharing this video and reminding me about ‘do it any way’,
    As regards our architect friend in Iraq, I guess, designing buildings is quite similar to writing poetry or stories (something which makes me feel alive). It’s the moment we write the poem (or you design the building) that gives us more joy and awakens passion inside of us. It’s the satisfaction of having an image in our head/heart and being able to translate it into paper or bricks. We cannot control what people do with our creations, we cannot control what people feel about it and we cannot even control if we will be here to see if people enjoy them as much as we do.
    As far as feeling discouraged and helpeless, I think we all share the same feeling around the world: we crave for freedom.
    If we are broke and cannot choose what food to buy or when to eat; if we have health issues or some chronic disease and we cannot choose how to move our body or our physical condition determines our routine; if we are hiding in a corner afraid of what might happen outside; if we are deprived from simple things which seem so normal to the rest of the world; we are not free, we are prisoners of our circumstances.
    And then, there is another feeling we all share: hope. It is “hope of deliverance from the darkness that surrounds us” (Paul Mc Cartney) which help us try one step at a time, just for today.
    Studying at B-School helps me feel hope, hope that I may set myself free from my financial situation; hope that I may be successful in spite of my health issues; hope that I may not feel so lonely because there are other women who can support me in this tribe.
    I must admit, I am not 100% sure I will succeed. When I have to spend 50% of my day in bed in order to feel better; when I have no money and I am tired of trying different ways out and only finding myself in the same dead end; when the landlord wants his money and I have no idea how I will get it; when the tons of issues to solve is a lot heavier than the solutions I cann find; then I feel discourared and I want to give up.
    But, there is a moment when I get an email with a link to this video, or an email from a new friend, or I get an unexpected gift, or I am able to write something beautiful in spite of the darness; and then hope prevails and that spot of light just makes sense for today.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautiful, Susannah! Hope does indeed prevail and we’re really happy you’re going for your dreams, even when it’s not the easiest thing to do.

  136. Thank you so much for this video and the question, Marie and R.
    First off, R., my heart goes out to you. You are so brave and you sound very strong and passionate. That’s so very needed right now. Especially in your country and circumstance. You are holding – and literally building – the LIGHT that you are.
    I can’t even imagine how you must feel under your circumstances, so admire you even more for this and it puts things into perspective for when I have a day where I feel lonely or like ‘does this even make ANY difference?’. It SOOOO does.
    Also, please, consider this:
    1. While you are designing and visioning and creating, there’s a high frequency of energy flowing through you that’s coming from beyond your personality, so you’re already being nourished through that within yourself – as well as emanating that to others. AND, others see you model how it is to live your passion, especially in a profession that used to be more male dominated in former times. So good to hear that more and more women are architects.
    2. What you’re building isn’t only in physical structure, you’re also building it in consciousness, and, like Marie said, that can’t be taken away. You’re buildings are written into that blueprint of our collective consciousness.
    3. You are not only creating BUILDINGS, your are also creating HOPE after hope after hope, even if the building itself were to not last forever, hope is exactly what’s needed. 4. … and people like you who refuse to give up.
    5. If lower consciousness was a person, that’s exactly what they’d want, for you to give up, feel lonely, feel isolated and separate, and lose hope, lose your enthusiasm, and JOY, and zest for LIFE, to stay small and dim your light – or dim it again. You may have gone through many breakthroughs to get here. You’re still here 🙂 <3 🙂
    6. Even if in the physical it can get lonely sometimes, you may feel lonely – but you're NOT alone. We're all here with you.
    7. While listening I was wondering whether your feeling lonely might be an inner propeller and motivation to begin growing a community with like-hearted souls around you with similar passions, even one person to start with, they might be as relieved to be with another human being of your caliber. You feel amazing and strong and passionate for your architectural potential and what you can contribute to the world.
    No one said this would be easy when we all somehow signed up to be here at this time to use our gifts, skills, talents, and compassionate heart to create a better more beautiful world. to BUILD a better world, starting with beautiful buildings? <3
    8. We need your light in this world and time, your community needs it too, even if many might not even understand it or you.
    9. I totally hear you, it CAN get lonely at times, especially for those who are creating new pathways, because not many can see what you see until you have built it.
    … and isn't that alone worth it?
    You're creating monuments of magnificence and beacons of hope with each day and each blueprint, each scribble and each smile.
    10. And it's about the journey not only the outcome, so the being immersed in joyous creation, the person that you are becoming, daily, while being engulfed in what you so love, take YOU into whole new waters and expands you every day.
    Your house must have a GLOW around it, LIT UP by your passion for this.
    Do not let any one or anything chisel away from your radiant light, lovely woman, you're in a giant global family, a magnificent STAR building the NEW – not just a little crumb putting up with what's left over by those who aren't as respectful to beauty, life, and creating such beauty.
    And I SO celebrate YOU. We ALL celebrate YOU.
    And anyone in similar challenging situations.
    What helps me when I feel down is to remember to not let the 'Low Vibe Gremlin' get the better of me, but for every time I feel like 'what's the use', I do what I can to instead AMP UP THE LIGHT EVEN MORE. This has gotten me through many cross roads and made me that much stronger.
    You've got this. Go gettem, tiger!!!
    I celebrate YOU.
    With so much Love and adoration,
    xx Tanya
    PS One thought that came was that it might be interesting to look into how it would be to use all your wisdom about architecture and how that might apply to building relationships and communities. Like, building the blueprint, the foundation, the construction, the teamwork. No idea where I'm going with this, but this popped up while I was listening to Marie read your email and share.

    May this inspire you to just be curious – and explore.
    Sending you visions of protection by all that you believe in, whatever that may be 🙂
    Oh, and here's a long sister HUG.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Love, love, LOVE this, Tanya! Thank you for this amazing wisdom and heartfelt comment.

  137. LL.

    Dear R,

    You most certainly are not alone…not in your pain, not in the uncertainty of life or the impermanence of it. I was immediately moved by your pain. I feel it.

    I can’t think of a better response than what Maria shared with you: take care of yourself and remember these truisms of life: life is impermanent and you have something completely unique and essential to contribute to the world. YOU MATTER. For the sake of yourself, allow yourself to put this work out there without being attached to the outcome once you release your contribution. You will have done good and the world needs good and needs beauty. For the sake of others, for as long as it is meant to be, your work will touch them. That’s not a gift anyone else can give in the way you can. This is worthy, no matter what comes after…peace or disaster.

    Our stories are individual but there is a universality to suffering. I have felt a similar fear of putting myself out there when, essentially, I have had to rebuild my life from the beginning and rebuild my heart and fortitude.

    In fact, I learned of an important truth in 1997 after trekking in Nepal and meeting with many people of less good fortune than I. I wrote home to my friends to tell them that we should be mindful of the suffering out there, and the people who live in extreme situations. A very wise and dear friend phoned me and reminded ME that ‘suffering is relative’. If we lose a mother, no matter where we are on the planet, we cry. There is no comparison to war, but in fact people suffer abuse, depression, self loathing, fear, disaster, divorce, death, job loss and job stress – the very things that shake them to the core. The list is long. It humbled me. It also reminded me of the universality of our human condition. The stories may be different, but pain is pain.

    So, be assured that your pain is reasonable, but you are important, and though we don’t know each other, I actually champion you on just as I would hope you would champion me on as I face my own fears: and for the record, here’s mine…that I will die homeless and on the streets, disabled and broke (this follows after losing my entire life savings in the 2008 banking crisis, and the events after that). It follows a string of mini-disasters in my life that are, well, essentially the ‘stuff’ that life is made of. Problems to overcome. Hearing your story reminds me to be braver in my own life. I wish you, in turn, the courage to know that no matter how hard it all gets…you matter, you’re not alone and you are worth – no matter what you decide to do or not do.

    Love, LL.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      You have more courage than you think, LL. It takes a lot to put yourself out there and share your story, especially when it touches on difficult subjects and hardship. We’re sending love your way too.

  138. Angela

    Hi R,
    Thank you for being so open and sharing your story as I believe your courage to ask will lead to healing answers for you and so many others. I agree with many of the comments already stated regarding meditation and knowing that our purpose here on earth leads us to love and do good, even in uncertain circumstances. I believe that our created purpose comes from God. We are to use our gifts, our love, to glorify Him. When that happens nothing we do is in vain. And what may be physically detroyed, spiritually lives on forever. Proverbs 3:5 reads: “Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding.” I say to you and anyone else going through a similar situation; Believe, love, and trust in God the Father, God the Son (Jesus Christ) and God the Holy Spirit. Above all else, find calm & rest in Him. Let His light direct your path.
    Blessings & Peace,

  139. Dear R & Marie, My heart’s feeling truly touched and Im dropping my tears here. When I could, Id just take you both in my arms and share an extra big compassionate and loving hug.

    We are all in this together, R! As Marie said in her coaching calls of B-Schools: “I need you all to be present, because that’ll create the energy for me to give my very best for you”. I believe, that works well too for our community. When each one of us does the best every single day, we all will benefit it positively. Knowing you now, encourages me even more to go out and pursue my mission. With each step I take, I send you too strength, comfort and most of all LOVE across our planet right into your courages heart.

    I also agree with Marie’s suggestion number 1: meditation is precious. Practiced consistently, it’ll do wonders taking you beneath beautiful, in a vast world of faith, courage and resilience. Once discovered, it’ll open up to you gradually and you’ll learn to drink from it and internalize it into your life.

    Thank you so so very much for sharing R and this episode of Marie TV today.
    Im feeling very grateful!

  140. Dear Marie & R,

    Thank you for an amazing question & answer! I felt the Love and the connection we all share when we spread our authenticity and compassion across this planet. R, I send you so much love from South Africa 🙂 And my heart goes out to you and all of the other extraordinary beings who keep your beautiful flags flying high in such challenging conditions.

    I certainly know my own feeling of futility & discouragement. It has really gotten in the way of my development as an artist. So often I feel like, in a world with so much that needs to be ‘fixed’, what is the point of a painting? I have a very strong sense of responsibility (us multi-passionate souls tend to be quite sensitive & ethical), which leads me to feeling like I’m wasting precious time on a career that doesn’t place very high on the list of global priorities. Especially because I’m a real Turtle and so my paintings can take me months to finish. To be honest, I haven’t overcome this quite yet. But I do what Marie suggests. I meditate daily (which I started doing regularly about a month ago and IT IS CHANGING MY LIFE) and I try to balance my energy by having other ways of being of service in this beautiful world. The movement thing is a must for me (like Marie says, getting down can kill the motivation to exercise). So I’m going to take on that 7 day 10 minutes of movement challenge! I’ll do it if you do 😉

    So much Love xxx

  141. Kendra

    I was thinking of TAPPING for R and others as a helpful tool! Thanks for the reminder of a commitment to 10 minutes when your slumping. That is doable.

  142. H

    We need more people like you, even when is so difficult you try and try everyday. You are not giving up. People like you make me do exactly the same. Let’s continue trying together!
    Let the love you have for what you want and love let you continue to potentially help those who might be needing that same thing as you.
    Truly all we need is love!

  143. In life I have had a chance to come back from being pronounced dead. What I realize is it easy to die. And just need to say it’s wonderful. Living however takes courage to do what we have been born to do here. Let’s say a beautiful being/angel offered me to leave this world and I said if I stay let me know what it was I am supposed to do here and make the seas part in helping me find my way. Here I am a decade later living a life I never had the thought I would get to do. I just realized when I got my strength back. Life required jumping in to what we believe in. Doing what spirit intuition drives us towards. A kind of important step was seeing I got a second chance. And so why not do it with e dry part of me. Now I am here in Bschool learning what life didn’t teach me. Do not give up on You even if life is only offering spoiled apples. S Nation

    • Ana Verzone

      Damn sing it!

  144. R, I have so deeply felt such emotions at times and I wanted to share a favorite quote that I hope will inspire you:
    “I wish I could show you when you are lonely or in darkness the astonishing light of your own being.”

    I love Hafiz! I highly recommend reading his poetry.

    You can reach out to me anytime. I fly through Dubai at least twice a year if you can ever meet up there as well.

    To Your Freedom – Ana

    • Ana Verzone

      PS I’m aware Dubai is not exactly close to you – but I had to add that just in case. You never know!

    • Gorgeous quote!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Such a great quote! Hafiz sounds like a wonderful poet, especially when you need an ounce of encouragement.

  145. Hi R! Love and support to you…you are not going at this alone. And your questions and Marie’s answer resonated so strongly with me…here in the US. Our country is going through it’s own dark period and the news is almost to much to bear. But, the notion of carrying on ANYWAY and doing what we love ANYWAY is what I think we need to hang on to. And…on a separate note…I exercise every day to help handle my moods. It works. Lots of love to you!

  146. Jocelyn

    Hello R,
    I don’t really have advice for you, but I did want to write and say that you matter and what you do with love matters. The fact that just this one letter you wrote is touching so many leaves no doubt that you can make a beautiful difference no matter the situation you are in. You have inspired me and I will think of you everyday, sending love from thousands of miles away ❤

    I saved this quote just yesterday, “Life is tough, but so are you.”
    “Tough” is a probably bit of an understatement when describing your situation, but it’seems also probably an understatement when describing you.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Right on, Jocelyn! I know there may be a lot of people who saw this video and wasn’t sure what to say, but you said the perfect thing. 🙂

  147. Linda

    What beautiful, encouraging words from the other commenters. I urge you to read The Bridge Builder (a short poem), by Will Allen Dromgoole. It is a beautiful, inspiring poem.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That sounds wonderful, especially considering R is an architect! 🙂

  148. Dear Marie, Dear R.,
    thank you so much for this very important and honest question and your answer – this is very helpful for me right now as well. I think we all come into situations again and again where we get stuck, hopeless and we can’t see through. You are defenitely not alone R. What really helped for me is practicing thankfulness – looking for the things that I’m thankful for, also the very small things like being able to smell a delicious food, being able to walk and move, breathing in life. I start and end my day taking 1-2 minutes thinking and feelling all the things I’m grateful for. When I get caught in negative or repetitive thoughts I focus on my breathing and taking 10 very very deep breaths. It helps wonders. I really hope you read this R. I send you lots of love and a big warm hug,
    yours Christina

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Yes, Christina! We definitely believe in gratitude too, and love gratitude journals. Good tip!

  149. Dear R,
    Thank you for echoing what so many of us feel and at times are unable to verbalize. Thank you for inspiring the “ripple” effect today – hearing these words intended for YOU have given ME the courage to go on today. Hearing your circumstances has given me a different perspective on my own challenges. I’ll share with you what someone recently told me as I lamented about feeling my attempts were futile….”Get up, dress up and show up!” Ok, so it’s certainly not as eloquent as Marie is – but you get the idea. Much love and prayers streaming your way. ~ valerie

  150. Dawn Elizabeth

    Dear R
    You are remarkable! Like Marie, I live in NYC, which is one of the most diverse and inclusive cities on the planet. I dont live with the kind of fear and chaos that you do. I get to walk through Central Park with my girls and my dog every day. Being out in nature always makes me feel a little bit humble and in awe of the world.
    I admire your strength and resilience.
    Mostly I admire your passion. There are so many people everywhere who don’t love what they do. That in itself is a rare gift. No doubt it took tremendous sacrifice and study and hard work.
    Marie’s advice is so perfect. Meditation and yoga are a part of my life and daily routine although any form of exercise is such a mood booster.
    Courage, kindness and an open heart are my values and how I try to live out every day. Everyone has theirs!
    Sending you love and light and strength.
    I’m new to Marie and just feel tons of admiration for this community!
    Dawn Elizabeth

  151. R. I just want to send you some love and tell you that inside of you lies the power you need to overcome any challege this life can bring you. Do the meditation and the movement, Marie told you about, that’s what I do too. I’m also an architect, but in my country (Portugal), dued to the economic crisis is hard to be one specially, an eco-architect, like I wanted to be. But that made me go in a different direction, what was actually, very good. I now give intuitive art classes to children and do that kind of art myself, and I’m completly in love with what I do. I’m also a single mother of three, and because I´m alone with no steady job, I face uncertainty everyday. But I know in my heart that everyday we have the chance to make a difference, by doing and being ourselves, no matter what. With all my love, Isabel

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We’re sending so much love your way too, Isabel! I hope things get better for you soon. Even in the midst of your own hardships you found time to share words of encouragement for R, so we’re honored by your kindness and generosity.

  152. Amanda

    Great segment. Sending love and light to you in Iraq. I can’t imagine what your daily life is like but as Marie stated you are here for a reason. I am also someone who has suffered from deep depression and the daily exercise on top of being mindful is extremely helpful. Thanks as always for your episodes Marie. Inspiring to a T. Much love.

  153. Judi

    R., It’s difficult to fathom your situation and heart-breaking to see the turmoil and violence around the world and in our backyards. I do feel hopeful that peace, joy and understanding will prevail. I believe the will to create and build is much stronger. For times I’ve felt hopeless, I’ve learned to take small actions (a short walk, listening to music, conscientious breathing) to help. I’ve also allowed myself to feel angry and sad. Instead of feeling like a wimp for crying or like I “have” to be happy and joyful, I take it as the process of being human. You’re not alone and I whole-heartedly believe you will see your wonderful creations come to life.
    With love and solidarity,

  154. Dear R. & everyone in the Marie TV community,
    This morning in my reflection time I was thinking about a similar question. I had the picture of a beautiful rose on a bush that just had started blooming and remembered this quote:

    „And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.“
    Elizabeth Appell

    The blossom will not be there forever, it’s living in the seasons and also in a world where it might be cut done, squished etc. But it’s the purpose of the rose to bloom and show and share its beauty. That’s how it was created – to be beautiful.

    The blossom doesn’t care if anybody will look at it or appreciate it. Of course it is lovely when this happens, but if not the blossom has to bloom anyway, because that’s her calling.

    R. create, build, live, love, breath, love, cry, pray, hope, fight – because you must, because that’s how you were created. If anybody will look, enjoy, applaud, criticizes is a different story, but FIRST you have to share your gifts, because you MUST to not implode. You must to live your calling.

    Beautiful architecture is so inspiring to me and as long as a building stand I will enjoy it. When it is gone I will be sad but for always grateful for the memories I have about it.

    Be blessed, guided and comforted!

    • “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.“
      Elizabeth Appell

      Thanks Katharina 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a wonderful quote and the perfect analogy! Spot on. 🙂

  155. Rachel

    Hi R,

    I think you picked the exact right person to reach out to. Marie is amazing!
    You may feel that everything is futile but the truth is – it does matter. For different reasons, I have recently struggled with the same concept. The way I am getting through it is that I want to do as many good, positive and helpful things as I can while I am still here. My faith is also very helpful.
    The other reason I keep on going is because the very act of working makes me feel better. It distracts me from the unhappy thoughts that seem a constant barrage. It helps to fight against that voice that keeps telling me to give up. My worst days/times are when I don’t have any work to focus on. If you can stay busy with your work, meditate, exercise, and find some faith and support, you will feel better.

    With Love,

  156. Ilaria

    Dear R.,
    My grandma lived through WW2 in Italy a long time ago, in a city that was bombed a lot. Despite the scarcity of food, the fear caused by sirens going off at any moment, bombs and destruction everywhere, she kept going, working long days as a seamstress and supporting her husband who worked digging tunnels and coal mines. It must have been so hard, but she made it through. I think some things that helped her were the work she loved (she used to say: “I am an artist”), family, talking to people (in this day and age, the internet works well for that! :), and prayer. Whatever quiet time you can find to reconnect with the silence of the Universe, with the spirituality that we all share with fellow human beings in whichever way you know how to do it, will be worthwhile, I promise. Like my grandma is to me, you, R., are an inspiration to so many of us. I hope that peace will come to your country soon, but first, to your heart. Even if for a few minutes a day, cultivate it. Much love from an Italian in Florida.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Your grandma sounds like an amazing woman, Ilaria! I hope her story will inspire R on her journey. 🙂

  157. Stacy Read

    This was such a beautiful reminder and video to remember that love is what matters most. The circumstances that you are surrounded by are unimaginable at times I’m sure, courage is facing fear in the face and rising up anyway. We can all chose to live small given the way of the world, the trick is to calm those thoughts and remember that peace begins with us. We are the creators of our lives and the energy we bring to it. Pray, meditate, and trust that everything you do is coming from a place of love. Thanks for sharing and no matter where you are, remember you are so loved.

  158. Shay

    This is seriously one of the best Marie TV episode. Thank you for reminding me to keep on pressing.

  159. Alicia

    Dear R thank you for having the courage to reach out and ask your question. That is strength to even ask for help. I admire you for that.
    I have felt alone as a matter of fact i woke today feeling sad and alil depressed, not being able to control what could happen to me and my children…although your situation is different I felt the same uncertainty about life. I needed to hear this and redirect my focus on what I do have and what I can control, myself. Lots of love! Xoxo

  160. Minna Ahokas

    I wanted to say you are not alone in this, even though my situation is nothing like yours, there is something similar. I`ve quite recently changed a career and I`m devoting a lot of time and effort to my research without knowing if what I`m creating right now will ever be recognized or if I will get funding to keep continuing. What Marie just said in her encouraging video really resonated in me. To build strength to just keep doing the best I can even though I really don`t know what is “useful” in the future. But what is what I want to do is to try to give my best every day and to have this belief that no matter what will become it builds me as a person to try my best and that matters regardless of the outcome. Or regardless of how long I will be here on Earth trying my best. All the blessings for your situation R.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We’ve got our fingers crossed that you’ll get your funding, Minna! I can tell from your message that you’re really dedicated to your work and want to see it brought to life.

  161. Thank you so much for your vulnerability and honestly, R. You are a bright shining light, please never forget that. No matter if everything you design are destroyed, you will still be a bright, shining light. Shine on, sweet sister – I’m sending you tons of love!

    I, too, have felt that what I’m building (Shift Bars) is futile because no one will ever try them. But I know that I would not have been led down this path and feel so committed to it if it wasn’t meant to be. Or if not this, something else that this path would lead me to…

  162. R. You are lovely. Keep going. There’s no other option. Love and light to you!

  163. R, just know that you are part of a community much larger than the space you inhabit. So many throughout the Universe are sending you heartfelt love and support. I hope you can feel it!

    I good health and love ~ Jennifer Zorn-Ford

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Yes! There’s so much love headed R’s way. Thank you for sending yours and for being a part of this community! 🙂

  164. Dear R,
    I’m often too busy and distracted to watch Marie’s new videos when they first appear on Tuesdays (I save them for later Marie), but when I read Marie’s heartfelt email today, I had to stop what I was doing, watch the video – and write to you.

    R, I hope you can feel the outpouring of love & support zinging your way today. I never write in the comments section (I only read it), so I’m writing this especially for you – to remind you to multiply by thousands the number of people sending you best wishes after hearing your story on Marie TV.

    Keep designing with joy R – you will always have extra support beams for your buildings in here.
    Love, Claire

    PS ‘Do It Anyway’ – love that Marie

  165. R, my heart and soul are with you, sending you loads of encouragement from LA. Thank you for asking your question.

    Please let us know what we can do. Marie and Team, thank you for giving practical heartfelt options for thriving. The final quote just made me realize, as I expand my biz, I’m not sure whats going to happen, yet, I must do it anyway.

    I’m gonna watch the episode again right now!

  166. R. My heart goes out to how you feel, I can’t imagine how it must be to felt like things are so uncertain around you. I have definitely felt this way, but perhaps your context is different. One thing that may help you is to record how you feel about what you have created or done at the end of every day, even if you have only taken small steps. This is because, really, our sense of achievement comes from the process that goes on inside us when we create. What we create may not last but that inner development does – just think, if you suddenly created a beautiful building in a day, would you feel the same sense of satisfaction as if you had worked on it for months, giving your heart and soul to the process? The nice thing is that even if what you create doesn’t last, that process inside you has still happened – so record it in your journal! You can look back at your journal at any time to remember how great you feel when you create and to inspire you to continue. Good luck!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s so right, Natasha! As the old saying goes, “it’s the journey, not the destination.” 🙂

  167. Dear R.,
    Over the last 25 years, I have served children, families and community and along that journey I have had many learning experiences that have helped shape me today. Some of the most challenging experiences have been most recent, I lost my job and I have no family close by to support me. I was so scared, nervous, anxious and saddened. My whole adult life has consisted of me caring for others and my identity was shaped by my passion to help. I realized over the last few months, that I am to help and serve myself first, to love, to meditate, to trust and to continue to follow my passion to create, inspire and share my purpose with those around me. I believe that you are an inspiration and I admire you for reaching out, that is the sign of a woman of strength. Stay open, focus and follow your passion! Build with confidence and love!
    Paula Milbradt

  168. Lori Harris

    Dear R,
    You are not alone. Hearing your story was so moving and meaningful to me and thousands of others through Marie TV, and your work as an architect is enriching so many. You are a blessing in this world and posing your question to Marie allowed her wisdom to help you and so many others who share your thoughts. What I’ve experienced with Marie is that although our circumstances my be completely different, there are ALWAYS others who can relate to feelings underneath. We are all connected by our humanity. Much love to you!

  169. Mary M Russell

    Hi R and hi Marie,

    As an amateur artist I understand the fear of my creations being destroyed, it’s happened.

    As a Printed Circuit Designer, I know that what I’m designing to WILL be replaced by something better. Maybe even next month. Technology changes sooo quickly we are constantly designing and redesigning. I often find myself wondering how what I working on will change. How can I design it to make the future changes easy to implement?

    It’s a shift from “this is the best it can ever be” to “okay, let’s see how and who is going to make something even better!”

    From anxiety to excitement about the future. The world and the people on it are ever changing.
    Embrace the growth, be part of it.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such an amazing mental shift, Mary! It’s a beautiful way to reframe things for the better. 🙂

  170. Our biggest gift in life is life. Knowing we are here experiencing this journey called life is precious, no matter what happens, we are breathing and alive on earth. I watched my hard work not be accepted, when the 2006 hit, rejected and even though people around me admired my talents did not monetarily support what I had to offer, for me to sustain my life style. I am an artists in the three fields of music, dance and fine arts, painting, sculpting and jewelry. I have a BA degree in fine arts and dance, also one year intensive education in vocals and percussion. My journey took a turn when artists were defined as copiers of one another as Americans have become less and less creative. The education of art was taken out of the schools thus far. Its all business in so many ways and the heart of originality has been temporarily broken. I fell down at first, as I was older and unfamiliar with my new surroundings. So I meant younger people in the same struggles, went back to get further education and am working on building new paths to take as an artist. I still struggle with producing my own work, but I am everyday forming this new path as an original artist. I will think of you as an inspiration and hope you think of me as an inspiration. We can help each other that way. Our connective thoughts have power, i believe. I go by Cat and my artist name is LA CAt. Much love and more love to you. I thought go out for your happiness and peace in your surrounding and your life. ?
    One Love. Cat

  171. Thank you Marie for sharing all your wisdom.

    Dear R. I am feeling blessed and touched to just hear your true story keeping the faith. I am sending you love, compassion & anything else you may need to keep up doing what you live anyway. . Remember to enjoy the time while building. I experience in my business and life that the transformations while working are more important then the end results as you will keep on growing anyway the builds will change and get better and better over. Kind regards Christine

  172. Bonnie Lanzillotta

    When I am struggling I sing the song of HU. It’s an ancient name for the Divine, however you see that in your world. It’s sung in a long drawn out many such as huuuuuuuu. Huuuuu. Huuuuuu slowly with your attention on someone or something you love. It is a love song that brings comfort protection and guidance . This song can be sung by anyone regardless of faith .

    May the blessings be

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That sounds beautiful, Bonnie! Thank you for sharing this with us. 🙂

  173. Robert

    Prayers, love and blessings to you R. and Marie. Thank you for sharing. Very inspiring and that is something that can’t be taken away!
    God bless!

  174. Danielle

    This episode could not have come at a better time for me. I am starting a business and a family at the same time (talk about new chapters). I’ve been thinking a lot about items we have no control over and how controlling I’ve become. It was a good reminder that the only true control we have is over our own thoughts and actions. The lack of control I’ve been feeling is from having two miscarriages. I keeping thinking with where science is at that “shouldn’t there be more control with pregnancies by now” and on the other hand I can see the beauty in surrendering control and letting nature take it’s coarse. I believe there is a plan greater than me and my control (not to mention my control limits what’s possible). I’ve spent months feeling powerless and lost. This episode shed so much light on the space I’m in and for the first time I’m clear that my circumstances have nothing to do with my power but rather challenge my ability to be vulnerable, open to possibility and help others instead of getting stuck in a victim mentality. “What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.” This paradoxical commandment spoke to me in regards to my miscarriages… The lives I was building were “destroyed” overnight and I will continue to build anyways. Thank you.

    • Dear Danielle,
      I am so sorry for your losses and so impressed by your vulnerable courage.

      As a recovering control freak I’m much more aware when my anger and irritation flares up AND what it means – which is that I’m feeling out of control and anxious in some area of my life.

      Having identified what I’m REALLY anxious about – I then invoke the serenity prayer (fix what you can, let go of the rest, the wisdom to know the difference, etc.)

      Yeah, getting more comfortable with the discomfort of uncertainty and vulnerability – incredibly useful parenting skills 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing your heart, Danielle. And thank you for building anyway. The world needs more of your positive spirit and compassion.

  175. Hi Maria,
    Thanks again for wonderful tips. R. I feel your pain as have been through lot of pain myself. As maria said the only 2 things which are in our hands is to improve our thinking, which help us to be positive in life. Wishing you all the happiness.

  176. traci

    Favorite episode ever. To R – my thoughts and love are with you. To Marie – nailed it – again! Love. Love. Love.

  177. Juliana Rolemberg

    R. I don’t live in a war country but my country, Brazil, is in a political crises, that is taking all the workers rights away, making life very dificult to small enterprises, I’m feelling very very sad with all that’s going on, and just to listen to your question was like a slap in my face, there are so much bad things going on around the world and I was just looking to my small problems. So, please, accept my support and love, keep going on, I found the words of the book inspiring, let’s go on anyway. Move forward. And thank you, Marie, I’ll try the habits. Maybe is just what I need.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We’re sending love your way too, Juliana! Whether it’s war or a political crisis, it’s difficult to live in a country where you don’t feel supported. We hope things get better for Brazil too.

  178. Kristen Carter

    Dear R,
    Love and blessings from a snowy mountainside in Colorado!
    I resonated so deeply with your letter, and with Marie’s response. I have struggled with depression too, and in that space didn’t have much energy to create anything or the hope that it would matter.
    The one thing that helped me the most was starting a gratitude practice. This goes back 20 years now, and Oprah was talking a lot about starting a gratitude journal — just writing down three things at the end of every day that you were thankful for. Some days all I could come up with were the most mundane things — traffic was light on my way home from work; we were healthy; the baby slept through the night. But in time this practice changed my mindset and my life. I began noting good things all day long, even if they were small, that I could record in my journal, and eventually my focus shifted to what was good in life more than what was bad.
    I will admit that antidepressants also helped during that post-natal phase, but the gratitude practice has stuck with me ever since. Scientists in the field of positive psychology (in which I’m now certified) have now even proven the benefits of gratitude for relieving depression and anxiety; I am living proof.
    Here’s something I’m grateful for right now: this sisterhood Marie created that can bridge hearts and minds across the planet!
    All the very best to you.

    • Thanks for sharing your sadly-all-too-common struggle Kristen. You help everyone feel less alone and more connected in doing so.

      very best’ 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Marie is a big believer in gratitude journaling too! It really does help. I’m so glad it’s benefited your life too! 🙂

  179. I would love to visit the site more often but when I do I am asked to join several times, even though I already have…… The reason I say this is because I want to drink from the fountain of hope and joy and love, but I end up with the bitter taste of sales and self aggrandizement from the site. I understand that this is a business. It is not an altruistic endeavor to bring about change in the world. It has the aspect of bringing hope and satisfaction but is driven by the dollar. I pray that one day I have enough money and time to be able to present just such ideologies that you do, but for free without needing email addresses and without selling any of the knowledge. Or maybe one day I can sponsor the site so no one outside has to pay. Well I do say thank you with sincere gratitude for what I have gleaned (after I let the disappointment subside) from what you have shared. I do hope that you see I am not spitting harsh words out of some back handed desire to bring you down. I am really just trying to show how some people react to the site so you can decide if thats how you want people to see the goodness you present. Its not the message its the package. Again I thank you so much for all the joy, hope, and love you have spread. Please keep doing so, but please consider the package you wrap it in.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, Spencer. There seems to be some confusion and we’d love to sort things out.

      To clarify, MarieTV and browsing on Marie’s website is completely free. There is a pop-up that asks if you want to join the email list so you can be notified of new episodes, though if you don’t want to sign up you can click the X in the upper right corner of the box and the pop-up will close. Marie does sell online programs, though we only want people to buy them if they’re really interested and believe they’ll be helped by them. It’s totally fine if you’d rather not sign up––you can still check out MarieTV anytime you like. I hope this helps clear up the confusion! Feel free to email us at infoATmarieforleoDOTcom if you have any questions.

  180. Cass

    Thank you for sharing, R. And thank you for your love, Marie. We are all in this together. I’m going through a very similar situation and this video brought tears to my eyes. Meditation and prayer seem to keep popping up whenever I am seeking answers to all of this confusion. We all need each other, and we all need the work that each of us does in this world. You are so loved, R. Your work is so valued. You are never alone. “I was lucky enough to have been to rock bottom before, right? So I know, for a fact, that rock bottom is always the beginning of the newness. It hurts and it’s painful, and then there’s the waiting — where you don’t know what the hell going on and you don’t think any of it is going to make sense and then, there’s the rising.” -Glennon Doyle Melton

    Praying for you, and your home, and sending you so much love. xo.

  181. Monica

    Dear R.,
    Your dilemma and question deeply touched me. I believe the energy you feel and transmit during the PROCESS of designing and building reaches further and beyond the product of the physical building you design. Even more impressive is the continuous act of loving and building again and again and AGAIN – every time a building comes down To triumph is to design and build structure and beauty again and AGAIN – that’s what people around you will see. And that’s an important legacy in itself. Thank you for your question (I never comment on ANYTHING – so you’ve had a huge impact on me already). May peace find its way to you and your country – M.

  182. Michael

    The feeling of being alone is helped by things like prayer , meditation, music, nature and such. Good for feeling centred, calm, positive and connected.
    The feeling of wanting to give up when things seem futile, well there is the question of our choice in how we see any given situation.
    In any case we can never be in full control and cannot create permanence even in the best of circumstances. But we can always inspire others by our efforts nevertheless.
    If you quit, give up, do nothing then you hand an easy victory to whatever might seem to be the opposition. If you just keep going and do even the smallest thing each day, it can allow growth and is an outlet for your creative energy.
    If you have to do it all over again, then enjoy it again if it’s what you love.
    Just don’t give up.
    Never choose to give up your dreams and what you love in life.
    I’m not trying to be funny, but you could say, for every building that’s knocked down today it’s another opportunity to build something new tomorrow.
    Keep it going R.
    And everyone else.

  183. Darlene Michele

    My heart is with you. You are NOT alone. You are part of the human family and that makes us sisters. When it appears that you are alone, remember that you have all of us, your family, here in the world with you. The thought that you are alone is a trick of the mind and an illusion. Instead, choose to believe that you are surrounded by many who love you and are sending you all our best thoughts and energies. That is the truth. That thought will build you up and help you stay strong when things are difficult. <3

    As for building, you shared your love for building things. And, yes, it's possible those things could be destroyed in the turmoil within your country. But, as Marie shared, build anyway. When we build and create anything with love, it may be that that thing we create may disappear, fall apart, or be demolished. But, the love that we built it with, will remain. Remember that part. The love will remain. And, that is really the point of life. To give love. If you build with love, then no matter what happens, you have succeeded. You have made the world more beautiful because you put more love in it. And, love can't EVER be destroyed.

    Sending tons of love and hugs to you right now!!!
    Wishing you a life of beauty,

  184. Jen

    Dear R.,

    Thank you for reaching out to Marie and her community. This world we live in can wear a person down. The future of humanity sits heavy on my shoulders as I’m sure it does to a lot of people out there. I can’t say for certain I know exactly what you’re going through. I can only tell you my own story with depression, for it is everywhere and I believe everyone goes through it with differing intensities.

    My mother suffered from depression and anxiety throughout her life and so when I graduated from college, mental health was a top priority for me. Our minds have great power and incredible capabilities.

    I lived in a Buddhist community for three years. (Definitely have done my fair share of meditating). But during my third year there in the community, I discovered there were cases sexual harassment and assault being covered-up within the community. Disgusted by this, I left. It was not an easy choice. I sincerely loved the community and the people in it, but I could not live with myself if I stayed. I myself had been sexually abused when I was just a child and I understood the full measure of damage being done.

    I fell into depression after this. I felt betrayed and angry. I was dripping in bitterness and feeling helpless. Meditation helps and exercised helps. But above all, what helped me was realizing that I had lost my heart somewhere along the way. So I invited my heart to return to me. I held on to any moments of warmth and fed those moments to my heart. And it grew stronger and stronger until it grew strong enough to help me carry my loads and burdens.

    It won’t happen overnight. It’s definitely a process and I believe in the transformative power of darkness and women, especially, understand this most.

    I wish for the connection between yourself and your heart to be rediscovered, healed, and strengthened.

    I send you more love than I can even imagine.

    • Dear Jen,
      “I invited my heart to return to me”

    • marilyn haverly

      Thank you, Jen. Your words encourage me, too!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with us, and the wisdom you gained on the journey. I’m sorry you had to make the difficult decision to leave the Buddhist community, but I’m really glad you invited your heart to return and did what was best for you, even when it wasn’t an easy decision to make.

  185. What a gift to hear this story I never reply, and often push delete – YET this one said watch me, pay attention – learn Susan! Thank you – you have given me courage to face my dark spaces and places- there is no –who has it the worst- or WHY ME- that question seems to pale all subjects – but it sure comes up! For my simple suggestion – I know that the only way I can feel true empathy and give real support is to have had the feelings – experienced the fear, had the doubt and of course wanted the answers- the answers lie in the questions and the ability to still love in spite of it all – Love to you!

  186. Marie, I love that you are such a compassionate person. “R,” I love that you have hope despite everything, as evidenced by your reaching out to Marie. I feel like the experience of terrible suffering is something that connects us all, and that seeing this connection is, ironically, our way out. It helps me to know you have known incredible pain because I have, too; it makes me feel less alone. I don’t have to know you to know that I love you. I’m sure you’ve already experienced great joy in your lifetime and even if it seems impossible now, you will experience it again, probably the more you connect with others. They say our social ties are the biggest cause of happiness. Know that your social ties include all the kind people who have read today’s post and care deeply about what you are going through and how you are doing. YOU ARE LOVED.

  187. Liz FitzGerald

    Dear R,
    I am so touched by the thought of you living in Iraq and boldly pursuing your work as an architect. I am inspired by your courage. I will think of you and hope for a peaceful future for your country.

  188. Dear R.

    Your question and Marie’s answer moved me. I am sending you good thoughts and want to let you know that I believe in you and your dreams.


  189. Ines

    Thanks so much Mary for you whole heartedness! I always find your responses not only inspiring but also down to earth.
    Dear R,
    I struggled myself with depression for a very long time. I lived in the midst of a corrupted environment (people, institutions). My only (and tiny) hope at that time was my faith, through which I had learnt the meaning of true love and cherish. Though, living with that disease was not easy. However, as Mary said, exercise and prayer (meditation) are two things I did which I have never repented for. Even if they both may seem meaningless at times, I would advise you NEVER stop doing them. In addition, I highly recommend you talk to someone. For me the more uplifting and encouraging companionship came through spiritual direction provided by priests in my church. They are trained to see and comprehend human frailties and are inspired by extemporary truths. If it is not easy to find someone you can talk with, I strongly advise: INSIST! Talking is fundamental to realize that even in the midst of turmoil there are reasons to persevere and believe in human nature. We are here to grow in community and to lift each other up. An important turning point for me (also highlighted by Mary) was when I was able to hold on to the belief that as long as I (my actions and words) can speak up for justice and love, there is hope. I can be the candle needed to light someone else’s candle. So, I hope that your profession can serve as an inspiration to others because, for sure, your gifts were given to you for a very good reason.
    Wish you the very best and my prayers are with you and all other people struggling in similar situations.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I love what you shared, Ines! Especially, “your gifts were given to you for a very good reason.” That’s so true, and even though R is feeling discouraged and worried if her buildings will remain standing, she’s the only one who can create them like she does. No one else can be an architect in the way only she can. She’s the perfect person for the job. <3

  190. Donna

    Thank you for sharing Marie. I have learned in my walk of life, that nothing lasts forever. There’s a song by Brett Dennon, and he says “Nothing lasts forever, not even the mountains”. Not even the mountains! It makes me feel beyond blessed and grateful to be alive to be able to experience the beauty of this world even if it doesn’t last forever.
    My 3 mantras I have for myself daily self is •Nothing lasts forever •Smile •This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine.
    We have daily opportunities to spread love and light and if we focus just on oursleves I believe ugly, depressing circumstances can change for the better. Sending much love to you!!!

  191. This story and question touched me profoundly. It reminds us that we cannot control everything, but can focus on those things that we can control. We have to continue to be around people that will support, pray and encourage us to keep going. I also believe music and movement is key to keeping your day going. R know even if one person is able to see your work you have made an impact. You are building memories in people that cannot be destroyed. Keep building you are making a difference. Keep being a difference maker by building lasting memories for others.
    Keep Living your Best Life on Purpose,
    Yolanda Shields

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Exactly, Yolanda! Buildings can be torn down, but memories last. And like that saying from Maya Angelou goes, “people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” 🙂

  192. Dear “R”,

    Thank you for your inspiring us…keep moving and don’t quit as we are inspired by your story..thanks also to Ms. Marie Forleo and to your Team.. keep up your great work!

  193. Sandra

    Marie, your message as it related to R hit a spot in me today… so poignant and heart felt. R.. blessings to you! I cannot truly know your struggles .. I admire your strength as I struggle with depression and am a artist at heart – and often find it hard to create in my world. I cannot imagine how hard it is in your world, but am heartened to see you are seeking. I have learned that when I seek – when I keep looking and asking, it is answered someway and somehow – if I stay with it. Thank you for reaching out. I believe if we can find a way to connect more as human beings, we can create a world were we can all thrive – not just struggle to survive. Whatever you create, it may not last, but those who see it and experience it will be touched and it will send a ripple of what is possible, what is great and good into the world. Meditation always strengthens me, though I still struggle to make it a habit. May you keep asking and seeking… in my heart, I totally support you.

  194. Dee

    Dear R.,

    Grave times like these are when the world needs architects more than ever.

    Art and culture and ideas are what make us most alive and human. We’ve got to do as much living as we can in the time we have!

    A person could live a century without ever seeing a beautiful building or having a creative thought. Or they could spend their life, however long, creating truth and beauty tirelessly for themselves and others.

    Thank you, R., for bringing some joy to a country that truly needs it. I hope I can follow your example.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Agreed, Dee! It reminds me of a story I heard about Winston Churchill in WW2. Someone suggested cutting funding for the arts to help the war effort and he responded, “then what are we fighting for?” Some say the story isn’t true, but even so, the sentiment remains. It’s the artists, the creators, and the dreamers that we need most, especially during troubling times. 🙂

  195. Courtney

    Dear R,
    Those of us living in the US can’t even begin to understand what it is like to live in your shoes, and I won’t do you the injustice of pretending. What I will say, is that you sound like an very brave woman, which we need more of in the world, so I look up to you and respect you for your strength, courage and commitment to work you love. Marie’s tips are getting me through what currently feels like a very tough time, and although some days it is very difficult to make myself move, and to sit for 10 minutes quietly, they both can truly shift my perspective and make me feel better almost instantly. So even if they may seem futile, a mindset shift, even if only for a short time, may be what you need to keep you going. Sometimes, it’s also just taking an action that helps. I admire you and please don’t give up if it feels like this is what you are called to do! Our thoughts and prayers are with you, even if it seems sometimes like us in the US are detached, I promise not all of us are 🙂

    • Dear Courtney, you may be detached in the US, but – as you are telling R – you are not alone.

      Sending best wishes and light from New Zealand

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautifully said, Courtney!

  196. Hi Marie,

    When I think people I love will not be here forever, that gets me down too (speacially my parents). I have a daughter (she is 6 now), and I start to think that one day I’ll not be here for her. But, as you said, I’m here now, so I took a shift. I start to write letters for her, letters that she will only read in a few years. In these letters I write on subjects that I would like to talk to her about, but not today, because after all, she is only 6 years old.
    I’m sure she’ll enjoy reading the letters in the future, especially if I’m not here anymore.

    Thank’s for all the things you do. It means a lot to me!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s so wonderful of you to do, Aline! I know your daughter will be so thankful you took the time to write when she’s reading your letters one day. That’s such a beautiful gift to give.

  197. Dear R,
    I would like to acknowledge you for your honest and brave question. As you can see, you have moved many people here from around the world. You have already contributed to more love, compassion and connection happening on this planet because of your words.

    A few years ago I took my daughters to your neighboring country of Iran. I know the circumstances are very different there than Iraq and the difficulties with the government are very different. But there are also similarities in that many people there are living under governmental regimes that they do not agree with- as are we in the US for that matter! Americans are not allowed to travel freely through the country and we had to have a police registered escort wherever we went, two of these were men and two were women. The women were both in their 20’s and what many people in the West do not understand is what happens to people who live under strong oppression. It does not make them weaker, but makes them incredibly strong. The wisdom and intelligence of those two women in their 20’s cannot be found here in the US until around age 50. There is a gift in the turmoil that you live that cannot be measured and is understood by very few people. None of us chose where we were born and to whom we were born.

    My grandpa died in the holocaust and my parents are both immigrants because they were fleeing senseless death- as wars always are. They were both strong survivors and also had a drive that I just do not have. I did not grow up in a war zone, but the beaches of California as they were determined to create a better life for their children than they had. They did. And I am grateful. My children have an even easier life than I did and I’m not sure it is doing them any favors. I try my best to expose them to the world at large and make them think and challenge them, yet they will never have that level of intensity, focus and wisdom that those young Iranian women did. You are the same. You see how your words have gone straight to the heart of women all around the world. You have more focus and power in your intentions because of what you have lived. It’s like the diamond that is formed through the stress and pressure around it- you are that diamond that shines so brightly. Please keep shining and letting the world hear your voice. We, in the West, need to hear your voices. Your voices will help carry all women forward. So many Westerners believe that we need to help our Middle Eastern sisters- yes, we want to see peace and freedom in your region! – But at the same time, we also need you to help us! We need your powerful voices to remind us of what is important and the heart of the human experience. Many in the West are lost in materialism and a meaningless life that leads to depression. We need your powerful words to pierce our hearts and wake us up. Please keep speaking. Keep creating. Keep reminding us of our humanity when we are in the grips of first world problems- my coffee was too hot this morning- and meaningless complaints. The world is alive and beautiful and painful and sublime and awful. It is all of those things and in that we mess we can all find our way. But we need guides like you sometimes. Thank you for being our guide today. 🙂

    • So true Angelina.

      I don’t believe what doesn’t kill you automatically makes you stronger – sometimes it does and other times it leaves you broken. And it may simply be that more sensitive types, for all their gifts and through no fault of their own, are a little more fragile, a little more sensitive to the pain.

      But I agree that your children will struggle to appreciate the material things in life they did not struggle to earn – and against a cultural backdrop of relentless consumerism bombarding them with messages that they are not ‘enough’ and in order to be enough they must have more, and more, and more (and it’s hard for parents to combat that onslaught.)

      For some, depression sets in when we believe we can never be enough, and just give up. Characterised by a loss of hope, it’s easier to live disappointed than to be disappointed (Brene Brown).

      For others, depression sets in when we ‘have it all’ and realise that for all our net worth we still don’t feel worthy. We often feel cheated. We followed the rules, played the game. And found the trophy cupboard was empty and lonely. Worse, we feel we are not allowed to be depressed – what do we have to be depressed about?! Others would kill for our lives. So slather a thick layer of guilt and invalidation on top of the depression.

      Thanks to R, this Tuesday Q and A is about the stuff that really matters – a sense of purposes and contribution, but most critically of all, a sense of connection and belonging.

      Thank you

    • Elaine

      So true! Perfectly said!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So well said, Angela! Thank you for sharing your story too. And you’re so right–––we need more voices like R’s in the world.

  198. Mary

    Dear “R,”
    Your question and story touched my heart. Thank you for having such incredible courage to continue to seek out the good, the meaning and the love no matter what. Your passion and purpose will make your country and the world a happier, more loving and full place.
    Although we are worlds apart, and I have never known the kind of challenges you have faced, your question moved Marie to make an episode that came to me at just the perfect time. I have been trying to find the courage to believe that I can live a life of self love and happiness, and I have a lot of hold habits of thoughts that make that kind of life feel impossible. I have been feeling defeated and without much more energy to keep trying, despite the yearning in my heart. Marie’s video and your question and story helped move me back in the direction that I have been trying to stay the course on.
    Keep the faith, the world needs creations from people with your kind heart, passion and love.
    With great love,

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Stay the course, Mary. The world needs that special gift that only you have, too. 🙂 We believe in you!

  199. Dear R.,
    I believe that it is women like you who will be making a difference in your country, and to our planet.
    I strongly encourage you to keep going and never ever give up hope!
    You are the answer to the suffering in this world.
    I am proud to call you my sister.
    Thank you for your work, your contribution, your perseverance.
    You are making the world more beautiful for all of us!
    Love to you, your country and people.
    xoxo, Lee Ann

  200. Hey Marie and R,
    Love to you R. – all the best and totally understand where you are coming from.
    1. As a creative type I feel like when I am creating something and the end is nearing I almost have to remind myself that – this thing- this product, show or performance will be over in 5-4-3-2-1. So allowing my self to say, continue on !! Anyway !! be Anyway!! is a great way to keep going. Much love to you R. – We got you!!
    2. That tactic that has helped me continue anyway is a combination of rest and gratitude. The Rest is really caring about my health and observing my emotions/ thoughts/ habits after the project ends- Did I like this and that and how much time will I need to recover. Mediation is a big factor of this work. Gratitude that although I may have loved the project it is over and I produced something in the world that will inspire, motivate, move people – open door ways. and gratitude that I can build more after.
    Much love you Marie

  201. Priscilla

    Thank you Marie and R for an inspiring and thought-provoking episode.

    R, the beauty you can bring to the world with your love and passion for what you do is boundless. You are making a difference by creating your art , and right here by sharing your stories and struggles with us. You are not alone.

    One quote that always comes back to me when I think, “why bother?” is one by Paolo Coelho: ““Life is too short, or too long, for me to allow myself the luxury of living it so badly.” It has helped me many times turn my thinking around or get me out of a bad situation that wasn’t serving me. But I think the opposite can also be true. Life is too short – or too long – to not do what you were meant to do, what lights you up as a person, and in turn the world around you.

    Hold out hope and continue on your path. We are all with you.

    Much love to you, R. And to Marie, for bringing us all together!


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Love that, Priscilla! That’s the perfect quote.

  202. Hi R,

    I have dealt with anxiety and depression for over 10 years now and I know how difficult it can be, even without having to deal with the additional stress of living in a war-torn country. I have thankfully felt much better over the past 6-8 months or so, but I will never forget the feeling. You’re not alone in this at all!

    Regarding meditation, I know it’s not for everyone and I do have one suggestion for anyone that has trouble with it. This might sound silly but – I color. I have a collection of adult coloring books, markers, colored pencils etc. When I’m stressed I just sit down and go to town. Since the images are already there and you’re not having to create something from scratch, you can really zone out and just focus on coloring each little section at a time. It totally clears my head – sometimes even more than going for a walk.

    Another thing that has helped me stay focused and keep moving toward my goals is finding a support network. I have joined a few amazing groups on Facebook and through a couple online courses. The women are amazing and have become like family, even if we’ve never met in person. I now have family in Denmark, Australia, Canada, Italy, Japan, Mexico and more – and we keep each other motivated and inspired. This is definitely something I would recommend looking into!

    Best of luck and build on!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I’m so glad you suggested that, Dorothy! I have trouble with meditation myself, but coloring books do the trick. 🙂 It’s not a silly suggestion at all!

  203. Yukari in Hawaii

    Dear R,
    You are not alone. Lots of hugs and lots of love to you!

  204. Hi R. Thank you for having the courage to share your story. You are not alone. You just aren’t. The thing that helps me the most, is embracing the so called ‘dark thoughts’. I see them as a warning from within, to return to my female, quiet place and really feel and meditate. The place from where we women create, from where our wisdom comes from, our passion and capacity to put new things into the world, is a dark place by nature. With dark, I don’t mean bad. It’s just dark, you can’t forsee what’s up next :-). I hope this doesn’t sound woolly 😉 I think the problem is, we don’t understand that place anymore. We judge it and ourselves and we get ‘uncomfortable’ and negative. What helps me, when I am ‘deep into the earth’ and feel like I’m cut off from love, warmth, connection, is smiling and allowing myself to be in that meditation. Visualizing this as maybe sitting at the bottom of a well, what I DON’T do: is put the lid on top of my ‘well’ in the ground. If you relax and smile, you will see that you can start asking yourself creative questions, instead of destructive ones. No matter what, I never allow myself to stay longer than 10 minutes in a destructive state. A second thing that helps me, is get myself into a state of gratitude, by naming 10 things (count them on your fingers) that I am really grateful for, eg before I go to bed. And I HAVE to be honest. Eg: I won’t say ‘I’m grateful for my kids and my great husband’ if didn’t honestly felt it that day. This helps me fall asleep relaxed and smiling. Dear R., I hope you find inspiration in all the comments. I wish you well, Lots of love from Belgium, Kathleen Zwakhoven

  205. Jennifer Cho Kain

    Dear Marie & R,

    Thank you so much for this episode. I was deeply moved hearing Marie’s question and knowing it was coming from a professional/artist in Iraq. The impact of such a war and the toll on individuals and families is heartbreaking. I so appreciated your question and also, Marie’s response. Personally, my meditation and yoga community are my mainstays in my morning practice. It helps so much! But there are times when it’s even hard to get on the mat, want to move when I get very down or grieved. At those times, I have to give myself compassion and patience, and being able to accept how I really feel is the beginning of healing. When I can get myself back on the mat, I set my timer for 20 min. Usually, I go beyond the 20 minutes, but sometimes, I just begin by lying there, letting myself breathe. Then I move as my body wants to move and I do some familiar asanas, or move in a new pattern, which is healing and creative and expanding for the mind. 9 x out of 10, I feel a ton better afterwards. And I pray. Meditation and prayer are for me like a hug and a kiss from my Beloved. Something I would not start the day without! Sending you so many blessings of peace, well-being and love to you, your family and community. Thank you for your courage of reaching out, and being seen. much love, Jennifer

  206. Knowing that there is a duality in aloneness that in some ways we really are alone in the world, BUT that there is support and love around when I need it, that is of great comfort. Then I know that feeling is normal, but that as long as I have the courage to reach out and share my need for support among my friends, family, and support systems I don’t have to go throug anything alone that I can’t handle on my own… On creating: do it for the joy of doing it. No one would ever pay for my art, at best, friends find it endearing when I gift it to them, but do it because it brings you joy. People feel that joy and love that went into it, and that is most certainly the only reason my art ever ends up hung up or worn!

  207. Inez De Rijcker

    Hi there,

    R, I would like to send you lots of love, support & recognition of your situation. I can not imagine what you have to go through. My shift in thinking how to keep creating when feeling down is that I KNOW there are so many people out there who have it so much worse than me. Food, health, financial, family,… That doesn’t mean that my situation isn’t sometimes difficult for me but knowing that standing still in life won’t help you with anything. Doing nothing because maybe it won’t matter for others, or it won’t last long isn’t going to help you move forward, live your life, in whatever condition that may be. Knowing that so many people in this hard world can survive with almost nothing, gives me strength to keep on trying, keep on fighting for what I want to achieve/ believe.
    Big hug and keep the spirit!

  208. Angela

    We’re all in this together! Sending love and peace your way R…

  209. R, first I’d like to say that I’m so sorry for what is happening there and for the role of the US government and citizens and other world powers that do nothing or perpetuate these atrocities. Though I’ve never known the extremes of war, I have known survived the violent extremes of a mentally and emotionally imbalanced mother and family. One of the things that helped me to propel myself through and out of the situation was the situation. When I knew there were other ways of living and being, I knew I wanted out of the circumstances. The injustice I felt lit a fire inside me that I use to this day to fight for the underdog in myself and those in the world. I too struggled with depression long after I left the situation and again I had to fight but this time it was with the trauma and negative thoughts that I carried with me. While I agree with Marie on meditation and movement, it can be hard to find the will. So I suggest that you find the things that light that fire inside you and use it to burn up any thoughts that deter you and to stoke it in small ways. Doggedly pursue anything that gives you even a tiny flicker of hope or enjoyment and fan those flames. Getting support from others like Marie, must be one of those things. Another I find helpful is when I realize I’m not in something alone and that impermanence is shared by all of us, no matter the cause. Do you know about the Tibetan monks that make beautiful intricate painted mandalas out of sand? They spend many days on their mathematically perfect creations. . .and then they destroy them! Perhaps some smaller version of this practice will help you to continue. Know that you can keep creating and it’s the constant creativity that will win over those who seek to destroy, every time. The world needs your light and your gifts. Please keep giving them! Look at each work as sand mandala, create it, enjoy it, let it go, and create something even more spectacular next time. Love and courage to you my friend.

    • Deanna Arrants

      Apparently we think alike. 🙂 Shalom & Great advice! 🙂

      • Mahalo! Let’s hope there are more and more of us!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      So well said. I was thinking of the sand mandalas too. 🙂 And I definitely agree that different things light different people up, so pursuing our unique interests and sources of joy and hope is key.

  210. Deanna Arrants

    Hi Ar,
    Thank you for sharing your story. 🙂 Everything Marie shared is wonderful! The only thing I might add, is that what we create may be wiped out in a single moment but the connections made in it’s building, the appreciation felt by those who beheld it, those are ours and live on in the universe. Just like the Buddhist Sand Mandala’s teach us, life is transitory and the beauty is in the process, and shared experiences that last once the sand is swept away.
    Sending Love and blessing your way!
    Assalaamu Alaykum and Shalom! 🙂

  211. Gertrude

    Dear R!
    Thank you so much for your courage, for sharing your questions and your hopes and fears. Please feel encouraged by all the comments and know that you also touched my heart in a deep way. Please keep on adding beauty to this world, by inventing beautiful buildings. They will be seen and will touch lives. They will be places of hope! And know that I feel encouraged by your story to do the same: to love and to add beauty to the world, no matter what. You are not alone! Love, Gertrude

  212. Mel

    R, sending you love positive thoughts from Colorado. I hope to hear any updates about your progress- keep building and take care of your soul! I think you have inspired us all here today.

  213. Zoraya

    Greetings R,
    Your story has moved me because your resilience is supremely admirable. I send you an abundance of love. I hope you can hear me, but YOU ARE NOT ALONE. We are in this together, moving along. I am here to help you rise to a higher level of vibrational energy. You are moving mountains. YOUR WORK MAKES A HUGE DIFFERENCE.
    Also, the remarks of all the commentators has moved me to tears. It is amazing when a collective community embraces the vulnerability of another being respectfully, and nurtures and encourages them. AMAZING.

  214. Thank you R, for your question and Marie for your heartfelt and generous response.

    R – you are not alone. I send my love to you and your country.

    You are already a light in the world by asking your question and being an architect. Thank you and keep on keeping on!

  215. Dear R,
    I can only imagine how life in Iraq may be! And from your words to Marie, I am certain you are a brave and an extraordinary human being. Please keep doing what you do, and sharing your passion. I bet many of your Iraqi people feel blessed with your work.
    Thousands of miles separates us now. But it is only physical. I am with you, we all are.
    Sending you much love now and always,

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautiful, Naima! We totally agree. <3

  216. Hi R,

    I am sending you love and peace to your heart and mind.

    I also want to say as a US citizen I am sorry. I am so sorry for the pain you are going through. I am sorry for what my country did to your country and the beautiful Iraqi people. In 2003 I and many felt completely powerless when the Bush administration went to war. Know that many of us protested, but it was not enough. I can’t imagine what it has been like for you. I know it probably doesn’t help, but I would still like to say to you personally that I am so sorry.

    I hope some day the millions of us who are wise, loving and who care deeply about humanity can find a way to help right this wrong.

    Please know my heart is with you. And I am sending you strength, love, hope, courage and peace to your heart. I would also love to send you joy. Dancing is one of the things that uplifts my Soul — the next time I dance in my apartment I will think of you and send uplifting, joyful healing energy your way. I will also hold you in my meditation practice.

    Deeply We Are All One,

    Bella xo

  217. Darlenys

    I found such inspiration today in your words Marie, and thank you goes out automatic from my heart towards you, besides you keep me on track of this wonderful books and ideas from which I’ve never heard before, so today I found the strenght to keep going even when a part of me have doubts and fears, nevertheless, there is always a part of me that says keep going, keep trying, keep loving. I am feeding this part of me with you insights, that part of me says all of this have sense right now even if you can not seeing in this moment all is well, and that I will see it and I will feel it, as has already happened in the past, that inner warm sparkle that you can find during a time of meditation or during a sesion of breathing would work miracles in time in your life and in those who sorround you. A warm hug hug Marie for you and your team.

  218. R, you have touched my heart, opened my eyes, and inspired me. Thank you. Sending you so much love, and wishing you strength. While it is true things of physical nature don’t last, memories and experiences do. They can also be a tool to inspire and share with others. Share what you know, create an experience through your work, and share it (maybe you can bring in youth with interest in what you do for a day or those with just a dream who need reassurance). If you find purpose in the madness, it will all be worthwhile. You ARE a GIFT, share it. Blessings.

  219. Wow! That really touched me. Real tears here. Thank you for such a wonderful episode ❤️ I feel inspired. Massively and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

  220. There were several events in my life that triggered a deep depression. One was when I was very young, triggered by the loss of a relationship. My depression felt like it would never lift. Every moment I spent by myself, I cried. I also felt like I would never smile again and mean it. I felt completely alone and like giving up. I did not know how to shift emotions very well at that time and did not have a very good support system in place.
    Well, let me tell you, after many months of feeling dead inside, there came a day when I was driving in my car and listening to a song on the radio and felt inspired by the music. I started to sing along…and for that moment in time, I realized I felt happy. It took even longer to feel completely feel like my genuine happy self. But afterward, I was so glad I did not give up – that at such a young age I was able to realize that when dark feelings come up again, that eventually, “this too shall pass.”
    Life requires us to do many new and challenging things. Even though I LOVE my work as a mural artist, I still have to constantly figure out how to give each client what they want by stepping into the unknown and create something out of nothing for them.
    Sometimes saying YES to things in life where we have no clue what we are doing, and simply doing the next right thing as we move forward, will surprisingly bring us the most beautiful experiences in life.
    Another of these first-time experiences, that at the time scared me, was so inspiring, that I ended up writing my first book about it…yet again, creating something new and good from something that started out being scary.
    Just do the next right thing that you ARE ABLE to do.

  221. Robin

    R, You have not felt anything that the majority of the people in this world has gone through. I have also gone through depression and felt like nothing I do matters anymore. I still feel that what I do for others does not matter. Sometimes you have to stop doing for others who do not appreciate you. I will tell you that each day that God gives us, we are to use our gifts to be a Blessing to someone else. It may be a stranger, it may be a friend, it may be someone who is also suffering, that God will lead you to. The choice is to live your life as God intended for you, each and every day. Tomorrow is not promised to any of us. Live your life each and every day. Get up, do what you need to do even when you don’t feel like it. What you do today may be the Blessing that someone else needs.

  222. Karen

    Dear Marie and Ar from Iraq, I usually don’t leave a comment on YouTube or anywhere else, but this episode for sure touched my heart deeply, because I am going through a similar situation, but somehow different at the same time! Because I do live in a safety country, however I am an ocean far away from my family, and I feel that by the time goes, the distance gets even worst! I am a super positive person and happy as well, however I also felt depression and I wanted to died! I always judged people who were going through this kind of feeling and somehow found themselves even more depressed by using drugs or something like this! I am glad and also blessed to have God in my heart since I was just a little girl, so during this though period of my life, one night I was crying and desperate for pure love, and I begged for God’s help and presence! I was so deep on my prayer that I definitely felt God’s presence and pure love at that night, and it was from that powerful prayer that things started to change! Books started to get my attention and I did my part as well! Which means, move your body (exercise is powerful, trust me) and move your mind (be aware of what you think about, “you become what you think about”) you have the power to control your thoughts and if they are negative, you have the power to change it! Trust me, I did it and I won this battle! Another thing I learned it was from Dr. Caroline Leaf “You cannot control the events or circumstances of your life, but you CAN control your reactions to the circumstances.” Hope it helps! Stay strong honey, God bless you!

  223. Michelle

    Wow! I’ve watched Marie TV for about 4 years and took B-School few years ago but this video spoke to me the most. Thank you Marie, you continue you inspire us all with your wonderful advice and guidance! I teach entrepreneurship to teenage girls in Afghanistan via Skype and I hear them say the same as R about building their future. They fear it will all be torn down. I hate even saying this out loud but sometimes I wonder if they will ever be able to implement what I teach them because of the circumstances in their country. I wonder if I’m being irresponsible by selling them an impossible dream.

    Marie is right when she says nothing in the physical plain lasts anyway! These girls and R have every right to build. The love that goes into that creation will have a lasting effect on the world – even when the physical manifestation of that does not. Build anyway R. Love, love, love to you. Thank you Marie x

    • Dear Michelle,

      How amazing what you are doing!

      And, no. You will only be irresponsible if you sell them ‘reasonable dreams’ – which would be to take their dreams away

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s so wonderful of you to do! It’s not irresponsible at all. You’re showing them that their dreams matter in a world that so often tries to tear our dreams down. You’re teaching them that their voice has power and that they matter. You’re doing amazing, necessary work. And you never know if they’re getting that validation elsewhere–––you might be the only one in their lives who make them feel like their dreams have wings.

  224. Sister, you are loved and appreciated. I do not know you, but I know how terrible it feels to be driven by anxiety and depression. Whay I do know about you is that are not going to give up on yourself. Your desire and need and love to create is strong. Let that guide you. That is the energy of the divine working through you. Sending a big hug and kiss from Hawaii.

    Thank you Marie for this one.?

  225. I don’t live in a conflict zone. I haven’t seen my physical world blown apart. However I have had a series of traumatic events happen to me. In a short few years I have experienced the passing of my son, my husband, the family business and my business too. Everything I cared about was destroyed. Or so I thought. The lessons of this are massive for me; although these circumstances are out of my control, I can choose how to respond. Now that the grief is subsiding, I am starting over in every way. I am forever changed. I now know that “stuff” is here and gone in a heartbeat. What matters is the kind of difference I can make in this world through co-creating with Source and with love. I applaud your courage to continue to build and dream. Standing with you and beside you in love.

  226. Bernadette Cassidy

    Hello R
    Please don’t give up; you’re a true blessing to all of us! Remember to love yourself more and know that you are in my prayers too and I’m sending you a big hug from Ireland!
    May you be truly blessed and may love and light flood your life and those around you!

  227. Sharon

    Just think of all of the miracles you are going to create when you, with so many others, re-build your country and your lives!
    With lots of love

  228. Lou

    Dear R,

    Wishing you not to give up. In my dark times I told myself to just make one more baby step. Just one more… One step at a time. (Another one was: If you’re going through hell keep walking). At some point you get to the light.

    Sending you love and prayers,

  229. Margaret

    I was only just reflecting how lucky I am to live in the UK where although there are issues we don’t have people who are starving and we have strong human rights and little real danger. So dear R. I feel so much for you and your situation and of your people. Loving thoughts are sent to you and hopes of peace for your country. Stay strong. Margaret.

  230. What is most remarkable about technology today is how connected we can be, in ways we never had access to before. Just 25 to 30 years ago, we didn’t have the ability to talk to someone halfway across the world – now we can email one another and chat and Skype in seconds, and it’s pretty amazing. As a kid I never would have imagined I could say that I would have online friends in London and Australia and Germany and all these places so outside my own world.

    I guess what I’m trying to say to R. is: you are not alone. We see you and acknowledge you and your struggles. And I think you are an amazing person for finding such joy in your work and life amidst such daily turmoil. You are powerful.

    On a side note, in regard to Marie’s second question… I’ve been sitting here, trying to comprehend the depths of that kind of futility and fear, where what you create can be so easily destroyed, and how to keep the faith, so to speak, and keep on creating.

    The only thing that comes to mind is this: the Tibetan Buddhist monks and this thing they do called sand mandala.

    They have this ceremony where they spend hours and hours, days and weeks, setting up and creating the most beautiful, vibrant, intricate designs, made out of tiny grains of colored sand. It takes enormous patience, calm, quiet and concentration. They work from the center outward (which is, if you think about it, pretty metaphorical for all of us and how we could look at ourselves and our lives: starting from our heart and working outward from there). They work and work until they complete the detailed geometric design. It’s remarkable and astounding, the level of detail in this art they create.

    And here’s the most astonishing part: when they’re finished creating the design, they have a ceremony where they destroy the very thing they have spent so much time creating. Where they started in the center, building outward, they now push the sand from all directions back toward the center. Again, the action seems pretty metaphorical about how, if we feel we are losing our way, we need to go back to our heart center.

    Anyway, as they push the sand back to the center, they erase all the details and beautiful colors, blending it all into these simple stripes of sand. The creative design is gone, just like that. Then they collect all the sand in a special jar and release it back into nature, in moving water.

    The symbolism of it all is about life and how ephemeral it all is. Everything moves and changes. Everything has a cycle. Everything is transitory. And especially when it comes to material things, even the most beautiful things that we can create are not things that should tie us down or that we should cling to. We can create, we can destroy, and we can create again. It is not in the thing itself, not in the finished product; it is in the doing, the creating, that we find what we need.

    So if people have the capability, I would recommend checking out a youtube video on sand mandala creation and destruction. It’s pretty fascinating and entrancing.

    Obviously, there are differences between this and what R. is experiencing: the monks can control the destruction of their own art, while R. cannot control what happens to her wonderful architecture because the destruction comes from the actions of war. But even if you can’t control who does the destroying, the ultimate point is that we must find a way to let go of the thing we create and trust that the experience of creating it, the ritual of creation, is the most important part. What happens after that is out of our hands. But at least we tried to create something, you know? We put some love and beauty out into the world, even if only for a day.

    I hope you can take something meaningful from that, R. <3

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      The sand mandalas are a beautiful analogy, Sherry! It’s also really helpful to know how they are created and destroyed since there’s so much symbolism in each step. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us!

  231. Gretchen

    Marie – Thank you for always sharing your advice and wisdom. I love that you so often include additional reading etc for those of us that want to dive into the subject further.

    R – Thank you for asking for Marie’s advice. Your situation is unique, but that feeling of pointlessness is so universal. You are an inspiration. I hope you continue to build beautiful things and that your question inspires all of us to continue to do our own work even when it feels hopeless.

  232. Wow! This episode went straight to my heart. Thanks you Marie and R.
    R, I pray for you and your safety, and I hope one day you won’t have to live in fear of your environment. I feel so much for you and I admire your courage and your love for what you do. I haven’t met you in person, but I can say you are wonderful and full of love. Like Marie says, keep building and share your love to the world anyways.

    For the second part of the question, I feel this struggle coming up everyday. I’m doing jewelry and art and both sometimes feel like they don’t make a difference, but then thanks to Marie, I remind myself that they do because they are part of who I am, and somewhere they are making someone happy in small ways. I remember selling a piece of jewelry once that was a custom order, and this lady was convinced it had so much heart, it helped heal the person she gave it to, who had cancer. I felt like my work became suddenly so important and I had to keep making it. Despite the struggles, I keep making. I also recently started a yoga class and I try my best to attend it daily. It ends with a 10 minute meditation on being grateful and I have to say, it’s magic! I feel more serene, less prone to anger and more energized for the day. Also I believe it is helping with my thyroid issues. So what Marie says it’s true. Those are two non-negotiable habits that everyone should develop. I’m working on sticking to them for the rest of my life. So dear R, I hope you embrace what Marie suggested and I pray with all my heart that you find healing and peace. I will think of you on my next meditations. Much love and light to you!

  233. R., please know that people of good intention are thinking of you with love. Also please know that so many of us here in the US, and elsewhere, opposed the US invasion that left your country so unstable and dangerous.
    Architects make such a difference in how we see our world, and I honor your ability to persevere in your work and keep getting fulfillment from it.
    I’ve found that Pema Chodron’s “When Things Fall Apart” is a great balm–she’s a Buddhist nun (from the US), but her writing doesn’t require a similar belief and she beautifully sees the human condition. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve met who felt this book really helped them in dark times.
    And yes, movement! I heard an interview with a psychiatrist who studies trauma, Bessel van der Kolk, who wrote “The Body Keeps the Score.” He believes yoga and other kinds of movement are essential in letting our physical bodies process trauma (notice how a dog or cat shakes itself after a conflict–same thing).
    Hang in there. I send you love and encouragement.

  234. Kristen Elizabeth

    Dear R,
    My big Why is horribly simple: to do God’s will. I don’t advertise it; I prefer to keep it private and make my place in the world on my own merits. It’s a polarizing Why, and relies on an obedience that is not necessarily relevant to many people.

    So, I add a poem, by my fellow Canadian, Gwendolyn MacEwen. It is the thing I go back to, and steady myself against, every time I feel separation or isolation. I love to draw and write, and I also love to fight against child trafficking and ritual child abuse. And I have a special love for Iraq: Gilgamesh, one of my favourite stories — hmm. Maybe it will also be helpful to you right now…funny how I didn’t think it first.

    My very best to you, R, and thank you, Marie, for asking us to help her; I’m in quite a situation myself, right now, and needed this spirit-medicine.

    When all the world’s supports gave way
    I constructed pillars very tall indeed
    (as time, or taller)
    Making me the roof of all things
    To keep the sky out and the awful rains
    (not to be left with nothing beneath,
    even a needle’s head where
    with uncountable angels
    one can dance.)

    But I feared the green earth
    And its largeness, the sea-tides
    I never saw except in sleep,
    Distances, and purple castles in the night,
    Sunflowers, conquests, kingdoms, stars,
    And once fearful I no more wanted
    Sunflowers, conquests, kingdoms, stars
    But that priceless loss of things —
    The unbearable dark and sweet lack of wanting,
    The death in the mouth, the utterly empty eye,
    The easy wealth of nothing for it needs
    No tending and no holding.

    I said, the House of my Blood has fallen;
    I said, someone with a gleaming axe
    is hacking to shreds my old horizons

    But now when all the world’s supports give way
    As they tend to do several times a day,
    I construct provisional pillars very tall indeed
    And invite the breaking, anytime, of these.

    • Beautiful.
      Thanks Kristen

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you for sharing this great poem, Kristen! I hope it brings comfort to all who read it.

  235. Stephan Cox

    R., I’m so inspired by your strength. Please know that not only did the majority of people in this country NOT support what our government has done to your country, but also that there are many people who care deeply about the plight of people like you. Thank you so much for sharing your story. So much love to you and yours.

    • Caroline

      I second that from here in the United Kingdom. Two million people marched on the streets of London to protest against the Iraq invasion in 2003.

  236. Oh my, it took me 5 minutes of scrolling to be able to comment. 🙂 Wow, this episode is incredible and the number of comments already off the charts!
    Thank you R for sending in this question and Thank you Marie for such a powerful reply. I am deeply moved and appreciate the advice and all quotes shared. It is about leaving a legacy behind, that is the only thing that matters. I will continue to spread love, encouragement and uplift to the world surrounding me. R, I hope you can feel it, too!

  237. Melanie

    R, your predicament has touched me deeply. Reach into yourself and share to create a world that is growing when all around you is being destroyed. Be the seed that grows the plant that starts the healing of your nation. You are in my thoughts. Kia kaha, kia toa, kia manawanui (be strong, be steady, be full of courage).

  238. Dear R,
    Your heartfelt letter is such a reminder of how life is really filled with moments and snapshots we take from this lifetime. What helped my mom get through depression was reading books and listening to meditations along with breathing exercises. I know it isn’t an easy process, but hang in there, you are passionate about architecture and your life is a testament of how humanity can be so resilient even under circumstances you cannot control. Movies can also take you to a place inside and inspire you wherever you are at. Watch “Lion” a true story, a journey that goes from the outer survival experience to the inner journey of finding home again.
    When I think of war, I think of the walls humanity has built up around love for whatever reason given.
    I don’t know if you like writing, but what if, just a thought, what if you took us on a three part journey? The first part – What if you started out writing about your childhood and how Iraq was then, and the hopes and dreams that permeated that time?
    Then the second part, what if you stopped us at a point in the book where the catalyst of war began and with it took the hopes and dreams away on the faces of many – friends, neighbors, community and your own – and survival set in along with the many faces of fear.
    The third part – what if this was about your journey as it starts out where you are now, struggling with dimming your passion in light of all the uncontrollable circumstances around you, and how it makes you stuck yet open enough to ask for help, and in that journey you started to draw a parallel of this time to architecture. Use that passion and fear to write about this moment yet move it towards the … what if we could rebuild it? what would it look like? what would it feel like? what would each community want to do? what would I would to do? what seeds would I plant for a generation that can find hope in the midst of anything?
    The what if is an opportunity to reveal the outer and inner journey of your life…. I truly believe that would be an amazing story… If you are not a writer, don’t worry, simple is good, and there are several formats – journaling…
    Just a thought…. May you find strength in this moment and never lose hope for your life can shine light in the darkest moment of many, including your own.
    You are not alone. From what I have read, you have an incredible support here, including Marie’s.
    Thank you for being you, for being alive and for having the courage to open up your fears. In that lies real strength.
    Hugs and love,

    • Dear Eliana, I just watched ‘Lion’ in the weekend.
      Such a profoundly moving film – speaking of the collective conscious – it’s now on my ‘unmissable’ list.

  239. One of my best episodes ever.
    Thank you so much!

    R, I admire you. You are BRAVE.

    Having gone through a very traumatic experience (sexual abuse) I constantly struggle with the fear of it happening again if I express my talent and my love.

    And, honestly, sometimes I do receive hate messages.

    However, I learn every day to define myself as a brave woman who overcomes loss and the hatred that feeling lost sometimes leads to.
    Like Marie says, DO IT ANYWAY.
    You will receive so much love expressing who you are: a gift to this world.

    Love, Valeria

    • Dear Valeria,

      My position is that the haters are gonna hate anyway – regardless of whether I play big or small – so I’m making it worth my while.

      Thank you and keep going.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      You and R are both brave, Valeria. And strong too! We’re sending lots of love your way.

  240. Marie and team,
    Thank you picking R’s note to do today’s Q&A on. What a heartfelt core to remind those of us who are not in unbearable conditions to be grateful for and cherish all that we have.
    R, Marie’s suggestions are fabulous. I also want you to keep this in your heart…the creations you build will be enjoyed for whatever amount of time they exist. You provide beauty from a place of love. Know how valuable you are regardless of the daunting conditions around you. Feed your passion and keep building. You now not only have Marie and her team sending love and encouragement, you have a whole community supporting you. You are more than a survivor…you are a thriver!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thriver! That’s a perfect description, Debbie. 🙂

  241. R – I’ve never left a comment here on MarieTV before (and I’ve been watching for several years) but I felt so moved today by your question and your heart that I wanted to pop on and just let you know what a gift your words are. You have affected and helped so many by being brave enough to reach out. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

    You are an inspiration. And you are loved.

  242. I work in a field where my work is destroyed shortly after I finish it by customers. I will admit is sometimes frustrating …but I try to look at it as JOB SECURITY.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s a really interesting way of looking at it, Mary! If R’s buildings are destroyed, I really hope they’ll call on her to rebuild.

  243. Hi R
    I was very moved by hearing your struggle – I can only imagine it. Even though, as with Marie, I’ve never been in any prolonged similar situation, there is one thing I try to keep top of mind when I do have those times. And that is what so many philosophers and wise people have said through the ages – the only thing that matters in life, the only thing that brings happiness, isn’t what happens to me, but how I deal with it.
    I’m a therapist, and one of my mentors who has since passed kept saying “focus on the process” over and over. It’s now what I say to others, and what I do for myself.
    I hope this helps; my heart and good wishes go out to you.


  244. Kristen Herlicka

    I’m sending you love and light. I resonate so much with your feelings right now. I am smack dab in the middle of a depression right now over my own circumstances feeling defeated, scared, and hopeless. But, there is a sparkle of light in me, I can feel, a knowing, that I am meant to do so much more in this world. Two days ago my depression got to me so badly I didn’t feel like going on another day, so I reached out private FB message to my closest friends and family and let them know how badly I am struggling. I am broke, homeless and filing bankruptcy, and facing having to bring my ex back to court for child support. And through all this, I’m trying to build a business! By my friends and family responding to me, and encouraging me, and reminding me of my strength, I have a renewed sense of self that I CAN do this and I WILL do this. It’s all so overwhelming but it is doable. I hope by seeing all these comments you will know you are not alone in your struggles. Anyone can do anything once they put their mind to it. We can’t do it alone. We need support. I support you. Don’t worry about things you can’t control. Instead of thinking what if something goes wrong, think what if it goes right?
    Kristen xo

    • Dear Kristen,
      My heart goes out to you at this time. I survived a similar terrible situation where I lost almost everything, and – at times – non-survival felt like an attractive option.

      It’s so hard and I’m so proud of you that you reached out for support and connection – just like R
      🙂 🙂

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I’m so sorry you’re going through such a challenging time, Kristen! Though I’m really glad you have good people in your life to stand by you and support your dreams, even in the midst of difficulty. We hope things get better soon!

  245. Dear R,
    Thank you for your work and your heart and for sharing your question. I am sending love to you and your entire country. I’ve struggled as an American knowing that my country has caused so much pain and destruction in yours, all the while I and my immediate community have been against the Iraq war from the beginning. I’ve learned how to become more engaged and raise my voice louder, but there are still days it feels so overwhelming. I believe though, that despite those who put this war into effect, we are all very connected. I see here in these comments how your voice and your question have brought so much good already—good in connecting people and shining a light on how we struggle and how we heal.

    When my husband and I were starting our farm in 2013, we had all of our tools and supplies stored in our neighbor’s barn. The barn burned in March of that year, just after we started our first seeds, and we lost everything just as we had barely begun. It’s been five years, and there are still times I feel the trauma of that fire arise in me, but what really remains and continues to grow is the community that came forward to help afterwards. With that community support, we were able to start over and are now going into our 5th season.

    Even though we are far away from each other, I feel how your voice has brought together a community and highlighted such an important part of everyone’s journey: the impermanence and the persistence to keep building.

    I know we will likely never meet, but you have my love and my compassion and my belief that your work is important.


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Beautiful, Kate! R’s work is important, and yours is too. It’s wonderful to hear you’re in your fifth season and that your friends and neighbors were there to help when you needed them most.

  246. First and foremost
    R. I have also never commented on this site before.
    What I want you to know is this; you have inspired me today with your love of creation. Loving to build things, even though they may be torn down.
    I have recently allowed myself to start writing, and considering it a profession.
    I, too, love to build and create, and am staring into the dragon’s mouth every day as my mind wonders what the hell the point is-wanting to build something that may never even be seen.
    But what I have started to realize just recently, is this;
    Doing it makes me feel better.
    NOT doing it makes me feel like shit.
    And as someone who has also experienced depression and the depths of that kind of unique and personal despair, I can really say that what I want at the end of the day is just to feel good.
    Creating makes me feel good, so that’s what I’m doing.
    If creating makes you feel good-even though the physical creation may not live forever-please know that by simply having the courage to do so, you have inspired at least one person half way across the world, to remember that she is not alone in her fear or her questioning.
    I do not know you, but to me, you are fearless.
    sending love your way, every day.

  247. Thank you R and Marie! Sending love your way! R, what you do matters because even if we never met, what you do matters to me! I care, support and encourage you to keep showing up. Visualize all us Marie Forleo fans standing with you and cheering you on!!!

  248. Emily

    Dear R,
    Sending all the love and admiration in the world. I’m thinking of you and I do care. You are not alone.

  249. Amanda

    Dear R,
    I cannot imagine what you are going through, so I simply send you my love & best wishes. Please don’t give up, I am sure that your contribution makes a difference for someone or even your entire community & beyond.
    Lots of love to you, Marie, the Team & everyone here!

  250. Eve

    R, I am ashamed of the actions of US military in your country. America’s government has joined in with the thugs of the world. I wish that my own country would clean up their own mistakes, instead of pretending we have everything figured out. I have lived most of my life in poverty class in America, and poverty class is hellish, no matter where you live, esp. for women. I grew up up in violence filled home. I had no family to turn to. Hidden gift I got, was I found real help in Nature and the Universe. Some tips that might help you in practical ways. William Bloom has worked extensively with the invisible realm of Helpers. He discovered that every country, town, building, road, etc. has Guardians. Invisible to the eyes, but one can sense them, if one acknowledges their presence. You can ask the Guardians to protect your country, your community, your projects. They are strengthened, able to work stronger in our behalf, when we acknowledge them and call on them. It requires us to move beyond human centeredness. We have abundance of practical help beyond humans, Invisible to the eyes, that hardly anyone acknowledges any more. Explore asking the Guardians to protect your home, your projects, your country, community for 7 days and let me know how it works for you? My heart is with you.

  251. Dee Draper

    First of all, R. thanks for reaching out and sharing your story. It particularly reminded me how fortunate we are to be living in the U. S. and I must continue to express gratitude.
    I am also reminded that gratitude is an action word and on a daily basis to seek out opportunities to take action in helping others. R. today you helped me.

    Thanks Marie,
    I totally agree, I subscribe to these 2 habits and without fail they contribute to my peace and rejuvenate my spirit on a daily basis. It also helps that it is literally in my genes to be eternally optimistic no matter what. My father passed that on to me. He was in the ministry for 66 of his 83 years (he passed away 17 months ago) and no matter what was going on in his life, when someone would ask him how he was doing his response was “I’m doing doing very well, thank you”. I approach life that everyday is a new day – – a new beginning, full of possibilities to live my best life. I have had a spiritual practice that includes exercise and quiet time for 27 years and those habits have sustained me through some extraordinarily challenging times (including my father’s death) and tremendous personal growth. Ultimately my path led me to be a part of this community – – never saw it coming – – but oh, what a joy this has been for me. Immediately, I knew I had to do B-School. The process is tailor-made for me. I have known for 5 years that there was more for me to do as a contribution to the world, I just did not know how to get there – – I had an itch that needed to be scratched. Without question B-School was the answer to my itch. The most significant aspect of B-School for me is that it includes Action Steps – – I can have faith and experience tremendous grace, yet what I have learned in life is that it is the Action that I take that brings the most in desired outcomes and achieving my goals.

    Much love to everyone,


  252. Brilliantly said. Thank you!

  253. Jan

    I was moved by your struggles, R., and something that helps me is to know that all the assets I need are within me to create again. I spent a lifetime of doing all the right things, only to lose everything at 54. Although it was devastating, I struggled through the depression and loss and started over, and am now much clearer-eyed and happier. Your strength is within you. Whatever you have built before, you can do again, and probably faster, easier, and better. On the other hand, you may find that what was once important to you is no more–all the “things” in our lives are mere trappings. Your wealth and happiness is within you. Our ability to create is our true wealth, and the expression of our creativity is deeply satisfying. Though we all leave this plane, it is the love we share along the way that makes it all worthwhile. I truly wish you safety and peace, and a life of creativity and love.

  254. Jasmine Beard

    Hey R – I have the great privilege to have been born in New Zealand & now live in Australia, I can’t even imagine what it must be like to live in a country at war for so long. But I can imagine you a brave courageous soul, who I’m sending all my love & a big hug too!!! You are not alone.

    • Hey Jasmine, another Kiwi! We do get around.

      Hope you are safe with the floods in Australia. The tail of cyclone Debbie has clipped New Zealand. We are on high ground here in the Waikato, but no one is making unnecessary travel.

      Best’ 🙂

  255. Pam Hardy

    Dear R
    Thank you for being who you are! I am inspired. Your questions brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for being in a war-torn country and having the ability to say “I love what I do.” With and attitude like that, I’m sure you are a beacon of light for more people around you than you know. Even if every building you ever design is blown to pieces, the fact that you kept the spirit of cultural renewal alive in your community matters … because it says “we believe in peace, we will keep dreaming, and that will never die.” Iraq has not always been at war. It was once the center of intellectual culture for virtually the whole planet. It will be again. Even if this war goes longer than your life, your dedication to building beauty into the world is a thread in a long lineage that started generations before you, and will continue for generations to come. Your role is to keep the flame burning brightly while it’s in your hands.

    Here is a quote that I love from Mahatma Ghandi:
    “It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that’s important. You have to do the right thing. It may not be in your power, may not be in your time, that there’ll be any fruit. But that doesn’t mean that you stop doing the right thing. You may never know what results come from your right action. But if you do nothing, there will be no result.”

    Thank you for being you.

  256. As a movement therapist and yoga instructor for the past 15 years, I have taught upwards of 8,000 classes and really have nothing to show for it. At the end of each miraculous class, the mats are rolled up and students go home. There is nothing physical to show for our time spent together. BUT there is an energy Shift that happens inside myself and each of the students who attend. We are biologically different because we showed up. And for me, I evolve as an artist. Creating and sculpting beautiful sequences paired with scientific and mystic teachings is an art. I am inspired by the growth I experience from week to week and year to year. Look back to see how far you have come as a creator. They say if we practice at improving ourselves in one area every day for 10 years we are considered a master. It’s the PRACTICE that makes you the master. The again and again is what changes us. Like the story of the 1000 Paper Cranes. We do the work not for the praise, but for what it does inside of us. To own a skill or art is so very fulfilling to our soul. Let that be your motivation and your guide!

    • Pam Hardy

      Thank you, Emily. I am also a yoga teacher, and your response is so inspirational.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s spot on, Emily! What the work does inside of us matters. 🙂

  257. Dearest R,

    Please consider this my virtual hug to you and your family. I’m sending prayers and healing thoughts your way.

    If you decide to accept Marie’s 7-day meditation challenge, here’s an example of Metta Meditation (aka Loving Kindness meditation) from Ward Simmons, Insight Meditation leader:

    May all beings be free from inner and outer harm
    May all beings be happy and contented
    Mall all beings be healthy, in body and mind
    May all beings live a life of well-being, free from suffering

    I will focus my energy on you and your country the next time I meditate.

    I use the (free) Insight Meditation app on my phone, and what I enjoy most about it is being able to see when all the people from around the world log in and mediate. That helps us know we are not alone.

    Thank you for reminding me we’re all interconnected.

    Be well.


  258. Advin

    Hello R,

    I hope you are well and able to see how many people here support you from everywhere in the world. R. I can slightly relate to how you feel. I currently live in NYC but before living here I was in Iraq for about a year working as a combat photographer. I did many humanitarian missions which made me connect with so many beautiful people like you. I have been telling stories to my son and others about the people that impacted me at an emotional level in your country and I will always remember them for who they are inside. Many of them were politicians, policeman, engineers, students, doctors and people from other fields. Remember, the actions you take today can impact people and generations to come even if things don’t last forever they will be in the history books. I am sure people see how talented and inspiring you are. I must say that my job is important to feel fulfilled and accomplished, but what matter the most is that fire inside, your passion, your energy, your strength, your enthusiasm. Those qualities will last forever.

  259. Jasmine Beard

    Hey Marie & team, thank you for your amazing show and inspirational wisdom. It’s like watching a favourite show, it’s in calendar as part of my ‘hour of power’ . Everyday I spend the first hour doing 20mins meditation & then 30mins on my personal development. On Wednesday morning ( I live in Australia) it’s your show. Sending you all much love.

  260. Ulla

    thank you so much Marie, for this excellent episode and thank you R for bringing up the question. I know those struggles very well and i would like to tell you, that my mantra is: “never give up”, and “love is the only answer”. On my spiritual path I learn, that everything is coming from me, therefore I have the power to change the “film on my screen”….so i try to clean up my life, and try to live as ethical as i can be…., in buddhism they say, as long as you have negative thoughts in your mind, there will be pollution, as long as you think negative about any other living being, there will be war….and so on…..our thougths are stronger than anything else, because everything starts with a little tiny thought before it comes to an action and starts to materialize into the world… we do good, when we think positive…and the good side effect is, that you feel more and more empowered and you won`t feel longer as a victim but more as a creator….I really hope it serves you…..wish you all the best!!!!! love, U

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a good reminder and vital wisdom. Thank you for sharing that beautiful quote with us.

  261. Tamara

    My love and prayers are with you, R. Marie, thanks so much for this beautiful episode.

  262. Hello, beautiful R.! My friend, I send you blessings, love, and healing wishes from New York City.

    I loved Marie’s response to your question in the video, and I can only imagine the impermanence and incredible devastation you have experienced has left your soul marked and wounded. I grew up with childhood sexual abuse and was attacked in college, so I completely understand the hard marks depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder can leave on your brain. That said, I’d like to offer a few items for your consideration.

    The first thing I would offer is that you are here for a reason: you are an architect. You express your soul through your creations; the soul sings when it finds its language, yes? I am an artist, so I understand this entirely. I will tell you that you must create, even though yes, tomorrow it might all be gone again. Brene Brown says unexpressed creativity is not benign, and I implore you to pour your emotion into your art. You were born to make it, not to shepherd its permanence. If flowers never bloomed because they knew they would wilt or we were never loved because our families knew one day we would be parted, what a sad world we would live in. Make your art because it is your birthright. Let your Higher Power worry about the permanence.

    Finally, I want to offer you this moment of brief comfort that so many of us in lands far away feel your pain and send you love. In the darkest moments of my spirit, in the nights that feel the longest, in the moments of terror where I’ve felt my body, mind, and spirit ripped apart, I’ve come back to the realization that I am loved so immensely. I was born, therefore I am loved.

    I love myself fiercely. I have to do that; into this world, I came alone, and it is through this world that I am my constant traveling companion. I must rely on myself, I am the custodian of my soul, and I take my responsibilities seriously. I also meditate, I move my body to shake off the dark demons of depression, and I’ve found that they help knock the blues to the floor regularly. But it is the act of creating, my architect friend, it is your art that will heal your wounds. I send you love and hope someday the world will be calm enough where we can all sit in cafes in peace and celebrate the beauty of our souls together. For now, I will see you the right star at the left of the moon, and we’ll share a smile there. Be well, stay safe, and know that you are loved.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      The wisdom you shared is pure perfection and you’re so right. The flowers bloom anyway, we love anyway, and we have to build anyway. Thank you for sharing your heart.

  263. laurais

    R, your situation and mine seem opposite. You say you create things that are visible, tangible and probably quite beautiful. Yet, through circumstances beyond your control, they may be be taken away at any moment. What I create with words will never be taken away. But I’ve never been able to get anyone to look at what I’ve done, and though I’ve poured my heart into my work, the love that’s created it may never be requited. Though I don’t know anything about you other than what you revealed in your Q to Marie, you’ll be the inspiration of my next piece which you may never know of. No matter. There are invisible bonds that connect souls across apparent time and space; and, as you can see from these responses, this connection is permanent and will last though every post and beam, bracket and joist, that’s ever built from your wonderful designs may be destroyed.

  264. isabel

    Dear R.
    I am another Architect inspired by your courage.
    I will think of you and hope.
    Regards from Brazil.

  265. R-
    Sending love and support for all you are struggling with, and all you are creating. Thank you for wanting to create amidst the struggle. We are all better for you sharing your gifts.

  266. This topic definitely touched my heart. Marie you are so amazing for your care for your community and the time you take to address our concerns is truly appreciated. R you are NOT alone. I pray that you are covered with safety and supreme guidance to soar in your hopes and dreams. Your story has inspired and reminded me to be more grateful in my current circumstances. Sending a virtual hug your way!

  267. Lília Finelli

    Dear R.,
    I’ve heard this from friends, since I work with laws. Everything I write can be destroyed or have no longer value at any time. And that’s ok. A professor always said to write it anyway, because we don’t know who’s reading and what effect will it cause. I’m sure your work makes a difference and I’m sending you lots of hugs, from this really hot land I live (that is known for recking its laws), Brazil 🙂

  268. One thing that came to mind when hearing your story is that because you’ve been through trauma and are in a volatile environment, this isn’t as simple as existential ennui. Trauma affects our brains and our thought patterns. As a result, my first thought is that itms important to establish a sense of safety within yourself, especially considering your outside circumstances. Everything that’s going on outside of you is affecting what’s happening inside of you. Trauma takes away our feelings of safety, so we have to learn to re-establish it especially within. The best way to do this is by practicing self-care in the form of taking physical care of yourself, and learning to manage your thoughts, accepting your emotions. and focusing on what you can control to make your environment as safe as possible for you.

    Second, whether or not your work can be destroyed doesn’t take away the value of what you do. Every day we create in the face of destruction. Nothing is certain for any of us, but we do what we do out of love. Instead of asking, “what’s the point when it could all be taken away?” Ask “what makes my heart sing?” Doing what you love because you love it is a good enough reason, regardless of the outcome.

    Third, just because something could be taken away doesn’t mean it will. Learning to be present can help with a lot of this mental angst. Take it one day at a time and don’t worry about what could happen later. Projecting awful outcomes will make you feel awful. One of my favorite quotes comes from Winnie the Pooh & Piglet:

    “Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?’
    ‘Supposing it didn’t,’ said Pooh after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.”

    • haha yes, Pooh knows mindfulness beats catastrophizing

      “Every day, somewhere in the world, it’s someone’s birthday” said Pooh.
      “That’s a lot of cake!” said Tigger

      Please excuse me paraphrasing from memory, but “Happy birthday” to everyone with a birthday in the next 365 days.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s a really good point, Jessica! Our creations could be destroyed, but it doesn’t necessarily mean they will. We never know, so we have to keep creating. 🙂

  269. MCC

    A Flower’s beauty is given by its fleeting existence.
    The shorter it’s wonderful flourishing, the most wonderful are moments of its beauty sublime contemplation.

    The Flower does not contemplate its fragile and short life. But rather lives and gives it all in its short existence.

    Dear R,

    Be like the Flower! Live and express yourself! Either in art, music or all under an umbrella called architecture!

    And continue to make other things come to life and bloom! As buildings are not only walls around us, but also spaces that hold our hearts and dreams!

    What a beautiful thing to share one’s soul in a blossoming home!

    Although autumn may come, wait for the summer! Because after rain is always sun! And things will blossom again!

    Find yourself! Seize the moment! Express yourself (so others can find you too)!

    Our hearts go out to you!

  270. Tania

    Amazing Question and answer! You can do this R. Hold on, the winds will have to change. No words can express the atrocity and pain you go through or the sympathie I have for you. Fatality can be such a dream and courage killer but the fact you asked this question, in my opinion, means you are stronger then this. And if finally the winds don’t change, I am sure you will become the biggest, strongest and most courageous bird there is in the sky. You just need to fly and You can do this!!!

  271. April

    Dear R.,
    I sit here with tears flowing from my eyes after listening to your heartfelt letter to Marie and then reading all the responses as well as hearing Marie’s response back to you. I cannot even begin to imagine what you have been and are still going through now. I dont want to get political, but I do want to say to you that most Americans know that our politicians are complicit in all this War Mongering and we are waking up and trying to find ways to make it all stop. I know it does not and cannot take back what you have already endured, but please accept my deepest and most sincere apologies for all of it and all parts which our country has played in these conflicts.
    Awareness is the key factor in solving these problems and while you may think your letter to Marie was a small gesture, the sensitivity, gratitude and fortitude of strength you displayed are going out into the world and spreading that awareness in a BIG way.
    Thank you so much for touching my heart and I am certain the heart of hundreds, if not thousands of others. I will pray for you, your country and your people and for PEACE for ALL of us. Be well sister in another land. I hope to hear more from you in the future. Blessings.

  272. Lisa

    R, I agree with Marie’s suggestions about meditation and exercise. Commit whatever time you can each day to do both of those things. They will keep you in the present moment which I’ve learned is KEY to getting through mental, emotional, & physical struggles.
    Also, I agree that listening to music can really lift your spirits and not just when you’re exercising either! Music always inspires me when I’m feeling down and especially when I’m feeling lost. Here’s a great Spotify playlist (link below) I came across today from an American artist with a beautiful heart & spirit. I hope his music selections bring you joy in the present.

  273. I remember having a big doubt about lauching a blog about spirituality, i thought my writing and what i have to say was crazy and that no one will read me and it was useless to create that blog.

    But then i said to myself, well i really want to write it and if just ONE person read it and find it helpful, well, my mission is done! So i create the blog and after 7 seven years of blogging, my blog has a total visits around 500.000 visits and thanks to this blog, i met some good friends and awesome and inspiring people!

    Like Marie said, we are all here for a reason and if we want to make something, it’s because someone somewhere needs our something!

    Thanks Marie for this great video! 😉

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Congrats, Aline! I’m so happy you’re building anyway and following your dreams!

  274. Dear R,
    The love and connection generated here are because you had the courage to share your vulnerability. Thank you for being such an inspiration and thanks to Marie and her team for this episode.

    R, you showing up has changed all of us. I’m willing to bet that how you live your daily life and the nature of what you design and create has an equally powerful impact on the people you choose. From my place of privilege and peace in Vancouver, Canada, I say, “Go sister go! Our world needs you.”

    On death and impermanence, it’s the very finite nature of life that makes us get “fired up,” as Marie said, to love fiercely and take risks. Being with the reality of our mortality in a heart-centred and soulful way does help us make the most of this precious gift of life.

    R, I have a tool with a bundle of thoughtful and juicy questions that help people ponder their legacy and then creating lasting messages for people they love and for future generations. I’d be honoured to share with you (and anyone interested) the 3 page “How to Write Your Heart Will” guide that we give away as an opt-in on our site. You don’t have to opt-in, just sent me a note at hello AT willowEoL DOT com and I’ll forward it to you.

    With love, light and gratitude,

  275. Dear R, it touches my heart to her you say that you love your job despite your circumstances. While your ear is if it will last or come to anything, please hold on to that love of what you do. Live in the moment and let not the love you feel for what you do go in vain. Shine, Shine as bright as you can, where you are. You cannot imagine that many people do not love what they do and yet they are living in greater comfort. Iraq will change someday soon. When the change happens, make sure you will have continued to grow in loving and building what you love to do. DO NOT GIVE UP.

    Much Love,

  276. Safeer sheriff

    Hi Marie, excellent & timely mail to me, it’s simply mind blowing & inspirational, after watching your episode I feel to live again my life cheerfully thanking the creator & also share ur mail to many deserving.
    Stay well!
    cheers with all my heart.
    safeer sheriff.

  277. Nara Younger

    “Work is love made visible.”

    Love anyway.

    Wow, did I need to hear these words today. Thank you R., and thank you Marie, for your loving contributions–today, and every day. My heart is strengthened to know that there are people like you walking and breathing and being on this earth.

    I relate the most deeply to your deep love and care and commitment to your country and your family, R. There are times when I feel lonely, tired, and hopeless too. And that’s because, well, of course my heart is awake, my eyes are open, and how can I not with a clear conscience lament at some of the deeply loveless things I see happening around me, and in myself, too?

    But today is a new day. And there are friends everywhere around us, if we know how to look. So let’s keep loving and living together, all of us. Let’s keep doing our part to make this a beautiful, good place. Let’s keep eating lunch together, and problem solving together, and hugging each other. And reading good books, and savoring the sun on our faces, and knowing the deep, silent places of love that we come from.

    Let’s keep doing this, together.

  278. Brenda Heins

    OMG – I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE all your videos and advice, Marie. But today’s really hit home. I also suffer from depression and anxiety and it totally demolishes my creativity. I also wonder why I bother to create things that my family or friends don’t seem to notice or appreciate. Part of the problem is that I am multi-passionate like you, Marie, and I constantly berate myself that I can’t just find one creative outlet. Then I am frustrated because I can’t consistently create in all the ways that I love. I recently started taking a course about Creative Anxiety through Daily – who knew there was such a thing(?) – but I think that’s my problem.

    I really like the course so far. I am probably going to buy the author’s books. I started keeping a quote journal of inspiration quotes. I am really going to institute the meditation and movement as part of my journey. Also I realized this morning as I was debating whether to go back to bed with my headache/depression – I decided that giving up in defeat and losing out on yet another day of creativity was also fueling my depression. So now I fight. I fight to not give in or give up. Anything accomplished in my crafting room is better than sleeping my life away. So even if I’m just watching videos for inspiration or crafting tutorials I am at least doing something.

    I have also discovered that sometimes even just organizing my supplies can motivate me. Looking at my crafting inventory and making it more efficient to use them sometimes is just the spark I need to finally play! It is indeed a journey. Thank you, Marie, for being a mentor and inspiration.

  279. Sarah Hoffman

    Dear R, I am so proud of you. Thanks you for sharing your story with all of us. As many have mentioned already, your courage and passion for what you do has inspired me and brought me to tears. I’m sending you so much love and appreciation I hope you can almost taste it!! Keep on building!! Also I just read this quote that may make you feel more hope:
    “We would like to leave you with this very clear knowing that we hold: You are just a few laughs away from letting a whole lot of good stuff in. You are just a few kisses away from letting a whole lot of good stuff in. You are just a little bit of relief away from letting a whole lot of good stuff in.”


    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Love that quote, Sarah! It’s such a great reminder for all of us.

  280. Elissar

    Dear R i really hope you will be able to read my comment, i do share the same exerience with you as am from Syria, Marie and her advises literally saved my life from deep depression that I had after I flee the war as refugee, Marie words were the light in my life, her work lift me up and I was able to achieve one of my childhood dreams and gave a TED talk in Europe. Dear R you are not alone I really feel what you feel, I just want you to trust Marie’s words and keep building becuase we all need that unique gift soul you only have❤❤❤ a lot of love to you

    Dearest Marie, I feel your love coming through my screen am so thankful for you and your great work and your beuatiful team definitely you are my saviour and rol model may GOD bless you ❤❤❤

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      We’re so honored that you’re in our community, Elissar! I really hope R sees your comment in particular because you can really relate to her experience. You’re amazing and strong!

  281. Sending lots of good vibes and strength to you, from Colombia, South America!

  282. Hanadi

    This video has came just in time! I’m going through a challenge for a week now! I was really used and all what I’ve made was taken from me by force! I was angery, sad and felt so lonely! Then one day, I decided to surrender and let go because I tried everything and nothing has worked for me. Today I received the answer, all my prayers came to fruition! And the heaviness has been lifted from my chest! One thing I learned is “to do my best, work, give, love, live and really enjoy that along the way” I can’t guarantee the results, but I know that I did the best I could for me and my beautiful kids.
    And yes I did feel alone in this, but I knew it won’t last! As nothing is constant in life but change!
    Dear R, I’m here in the gulf, all by myself with my kids.. many challenges to face as I don’t have a permanent job. But I know one thing for a fact, we are always supported by God and he is taking a good care of us! You have a lovely life and enjoy what you do xx

  283. Virginia Reeves

    Bravo to R and others who are determined to move past their depression and live with courage and hope – no matter the circumstances. I have been fortunate to live in safety and am deeply grateful for that. I find when I’m frustrated that going to a ‘quiet room’ in my mind helps. It’s not meditation but my escape. I have several images I call up. I then think of happy times, good things important to me, and reassure myself that there are people I don’t know (as well as those I do know) who benefited from what I have shared. We each matter in more than one way.

  284. Maureen

    Dear R,
    You are absolutely not alone in your thoughts and feelings. I have suffered from depression and anxiety for most of my 38 years in life so I can relate. It’s only within the past year of my life that i’ve really taken the time to take care of myself, focusing on what it is that brings me joy and fulfills me, practicing self-care and gratitude. I would completely agree with Marie’s tips to practice daily meditation and exercise. By taking time every day for yourself, over time, will reinforce that YOU are worth it. You were put on Earth for a reason, you have an inner light to shine. Be brave, you can do this. You have an enormous world community here to support you. How amazing! With love, Maureen

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a key thing for us all to remember: we’re here for a reason. Thank you for the reminder. 🙂

  285. Hello, there is huge significance in “R’s” first explanation statement. “I’ve been through a series of traumatic events…” Trauma is a VERY different category and it can live in our subconscious mind AND in our bodies. Speaking as an energy and subconscious mind coach and someone who has been through PTSD myself, this is not so much about your job feelings as it is about the trauma. When we don’t feel safe, many outside parts of our life gets affected.

    This is a safety issue and EFT tapping can absolutely help with the right approach and a trauma skilled coach/practitioner. All the other emotions–depression, fear, worry, anxiety, feeling why bother, are all byproducts. EFT practitioners are all over the world and you might even feel some relief in the first session. It may or may not take several sessions to clear the effects living within you but there is more than hope. Someone skilled will know how to take things down in steps so that you won’t be re-tramatized and you will learn a lifetime tool to help yourself when you are alone with your feelings about anything going forward!

    If we reach a trauma tolerance, it affects everything–our work, our relationships, our dreams, our health, and our ability to move on or go forward…everything! I hope this brings comfort to you, and anyone dealing with depression. You don’t have to live with it. There are solutions! Hugs to you, “R”and to you too, Marie!

  286. Candra Adams

    R., you said you love what you do. You are so lucky for that. And the other people who see and are inspired by your art (no matter how long it lasts) are also lucky. Perhaps consider yourself as a reminder (for people who desperately need it) that despite and alongside destruction, there is always creation. Plus, There are people who hate what they do, so what difference does it make if it lasts?
    I have found myself now, in a situation, where I trusted a woman who rented me her house. I have many serious allergies and sensitivities after being exposed to toxic black mold a few years ago.. I was just finally recovering my health and strength and so much did not want to get sick again. She promised not to use any of the products that set that off. After I moved in, I got sick, and could smell those products (glade, dryer sheets, etc.). My friend and I searched around and found that she used those products, then hid them in the back of a closet. She also hid scented candles (another trigger for me) in cupboards and at the top of a tall bookshelf. She even put a dryer sheet under the mattress of the bed she said she “prepared especially” for me. I woke up the next morning swollen, rashy and with huge welts all over. I had to go on numerous med’s. to take it all down, which also made me sick. The kicker is, I looked at the place before I moved in, and spoke with the previous tenant. She assured me she never used the products I ‘m allergic to, and the place smelled fine. Then, I got upset to my stomach, I thought it was from the med’s., until my little dog threw up last night four times. I checked the refrigerator, and she set it at the lowest setting. I was furious. I felt victimized and I took it personally. Why would she do this to me? I felt stupid and unworthy. My Dr. said she must be a psychopath. A friend who is an atty. is going after her to refund my money. But, last night I realized that by taking it personally, I was giving her and the situation too much power. That what I need to do is learn from it. This kind of thing has happened to me before, and I vowed this is the last time. I tend to be too polite and trusting (my friend pointed that out to me). Anyway, that’s my story at this juncture of my life.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      I’m really sorry that happened to you, Candra! I really hope things get better soon and that your attorney friend is able to help.

  287. Suzie

    Dear R
    Art, like architecture, saves lives. Where there is suffering, art heals, brings peace and hope. What you are doing is so important to those around you.
    I cannot imagine how truly difficult your circumstances are and we can hear from your message to Marie, how brave you are. Keep going R, you have all the love and support in world coming to you from this community.
    One thing Marie said, I feel is true too, even in my country I feel the fear that it’s all going to end. I could loose my child or become a victim of violence or many other terrible things or die even. I think what is at the centre of that is that we love this world and the people in it so much that the impermanence is crushing. But I learned when my dad died, when you truly love without fear that love continues the same, even when they we gone, even though you miss them and wish they were here. If you focus on the love, you can feel it still.

    So my message to you is to focus on the love you put into what you do.

    Good luck R
    Love Suzie

  288. Ally M Matteodo

    R, sending you lots of love and support across the space between us. You’re an inspiration and I admire you very much.

  289. When I heard your story, I immediately thought of Tibetan sand paintings. Monks spend hours meticulously creating intricately designed and colored mandalas made of sand. And then they hold a celebration when it’s all scraped away, as if into the sea. It’s always represented to me the impermanence with which we all live, even though your situation may certainly be more vivid and immediate. It’s all about the process of joyful creation – it’s necessary for our souls and for our soul’s evolution. Keep building, R.!

  290. Margot

    Hi R, I can’t imagine the daily uncertainty and fear you deal with, let alone being able to be creative with war as your backdrop. I think you’re amazing and I hope one day your country will feel peace. Let your light shine. As we say in New Zealand, kia kaha – stand strong! I hope all these beautiful comments make you feel the love of humanity around the globe. It only takes the tiniest piece of light to take away the darkness. Big hugs from the other side of the world, Margot

  291. Dewey MacMillen

    Hi Marie and R,

    I loved this video and hearing about the struggle you have, R, in what I can only imagine to be an extremely unpredictable environment. I totally understand what you’re feeling, though! I am a college student and therefore feel as though my brain has almost been hardwired to equate “likes” on social media with success. Obviously, I know this is ridiculous and has no merit but sometimes I can’t help but think that way! Luckily, I am at least aware of it. Anyway, oftentimes, I have found myself holding back from creating something in fear that it won’t be widely seen or well-received. I know this is slightly different from your feelings but I think it all falls along the same lines of being afraid or frustrated about not getting a certain result or fearing that that result won’t matter in the long run. However, as I have been finding in books I read/podcasts I listen to/etc., daily meditation really can teach us to be present and focus on what is in front of us and use that as our motivation/measure of success, not what may come to matter in the future.

    Again, loved the video and reading some of these comments!

  292. Zolaikha Strong

    You are amazing!! I am still in awe of your inspiring words and stories… This has been your calling since forever!! Love this episode and definitely needed to hear this at this stage in my life!!

    Love seeing you succeed and following your passion!!!

    Your SHU friend Zol 😉

  293. Alison Jane

    Habibti R.,
    You are most certainly not alone. Around the world, we are now thinking of you, and sending you our love, support and warmest encouragement. I simply cannot imagine what you are going through, but what I do know is that your presence, your attitude, your courage and your dedication are making a difference to someone. In ways you can’t imagine, you are showing them how to live.

    With my prayers and solidarity,


  294. This episode was just meant to be at this time and in this space.

    Today I have been incredibly discouraged and un-nerved by absolutely nothing I can put my finger on. I desire with all my heart to bust out of my situation and just goooo… never looking back (it’s in the past). Find a quiet nature spot, set up camp and just meditate, listen and ACT…push through the fear of doing things wrong and “jump on board” with what my heart and soul are telling me.
    But the reality of finacial chaos that would pursue me would not probably find me with a great deal of peace, if I just turned around and walked away from it all.
    I feel so stuck ! Fenced in on all sides! No forseeable way out! All the answers I come accross from within are terrifying to me (that land of uncertainty). Every penny I make at my job are committed. There is no money to start something new let alone get it off and running. And so I sit… In the land of mediocre…
    Listening to R.’s situation brings me back to the reality that I also have so very much to be grateful for. So much opportunity. I am safe when I go to bed, I DO have a job to pay those bills, I can learn what I want to and when I want to. I can go for a walk anywhere. I have food (sometimes), shelter and clothing (my needs are met)… and everything else is just wants anyway.
    R you are a very special person to be able to focus (even if it is your passion) while in the misdst of chaos and uncertainty. I cannot even begin to fathom the magnitude of that. But please know “You are NEVER alone as long as you keep reaching out, follow your heart and YES! “Do it anyway”. This world needs to see that strength you have, rising up from the midst of the turmoil, shinning and mighty in the power and beauty of your creations! You are in my prayers, now and always!

    Now I am going to buy that book “Do it anyway”!

    • Dear Carol,
      You have a lot of compassion.

      It’s an infinite resource – could you consider shining some of it on yourself?

      The psychological prison bars are the hardest ones to break.

      P.S. I’m much improved at self-compassion myself. I find it’s a terrific pain killer 🙂

  295. Caroline

    R, I want to see what you create, and what the women of Iraq are creating. Can you start a videolog about your work in creating in Iraq. I think I am not the only one who would like to see you. Something like this could not be destroyed and would last forever.

    Watching this post I realised that I feel like that about looking for a relationship; that there is no point trying to create one because somehow it will be destroyed, one way or the other. I hadn’t seen it that clearly before. Now I can look at it differently; to build it anyway even if it doesn’t last.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s a really good idea, Caroline! I hope if R is feeling called to share more about her creations the wonderful support here will inspire her to do so.

      Just like Marie encouraged R to build anyway, we encourage you to love anyway. I’m so glad you have a new perspective. 🙂

  296. As I always say, “Control what you can and let go of the rest.” Try not to think about what COULD happen and instead let your passion for architecture fuel you!

  297. Anna Smith

    I am not writing to tell you that I can relate to your situation or that your story reminds me to be thankful for what I have. Instead I want you to know how very brave I find you to be. You having the strength to reach out to Marie must mean that you are an amazing soul carrying around a story that needs to be told and life lessons that need to be taught. During the times when things seem dark, please know that I am thinking of you. During the times when each step might seem meaningless and heavy, know that people you do not know care. Thirty minutes ago I did not know your story. Now I do, and your wellbeing matters to me. Marie’s advice is great. Music, relaxation and exercise are all wonderful ways to deal with stress and anxiety. And when your options in life seem limited, don’t forget to plan and to dream. This will prepare you for a day when things will be different. And this will also give your mind a vacation of sorts. Create a safe space in your mind where only dreams are allowed and where fears and doubt are forbidden. Try to visit this space a few minutes right before you fall asleep. End each day with a message that gives you strength. And before you close your eyes, know that there are people you do not know that now care about you. Please stay in touch and let us know how you are doing.

  298. Kim

    Dear R,
    Your letter to Marie moved me to tears. I want you to know that everyone who has watched this video is sending love and light your way. Like Marie said, we are all here for a reason. I think it’s beautiful that you are brave enough to bring things into this world that can feel so hopeless at times.

  299. Beautiful response, Maria.
    Love anyway…

  300. Ash V

    First off R, you took a powerful step to not feeling alone by reaching out to Marie, and to all of us as a result. It never hurts to reach out a hand to try to connect, I have found that someone will always grab it and then connected to others. When were in our own heads it’s hard to not have circumstances seem insurmountable. Of course your circumstances are quite unique and challenging and your tenacity and willingness to build new and beautiful places is a testament to the strength you have within you. You love what you do- to build- in that way I think you’re spreading love. that has to be a gift you give to your world in a place where uncertainty and destruction seem all too common. You are persevering in adversity and that probably inspires many others to do the same. I hope marie’s suggestions are helpful to you along with the support that you’re receiving here. Wishing you warm well-being of knowing that you were not alone and that you are very very strong and inspiring. If you can, send us pictures of wood to build or what your design we would love to see them!

  301. Ash V

    I often quote a line from Ally McBeal when asked ‘why do your problems seem so much bigger than everybody else’s’ she replies ‘because they’re mine’ [not verbatim]. I think it’s very very hard to not think your problems are bigger than they are when all you’re doing is rolling them over in your own head and living them day after day. I find that reaching out to others in small ways and great- whether sharing details of the issue to get support directly, or just connecting for the pleasure of someone else’s company is incredibly freeing in making your problems more proportional to the size that they are and opening you up to creative solutions. I also find changing scenery or exercising as you said really really helps. Also just sitting and watching the world go by is my kind of meditation because if I’m left with my own thoughts the monkey brain takes over!

  302. Annie

    Dear R,
    You are one courageous woman, for living your dreams in the midst of such adversity. Refuse to stay discouraged. Some comforting words, rest with the knowing that, courage doesn’t always roar, sometimes, courage is that little voice at the end of the day that says to “just keep going”, advancing confidently towards your dreams.
    Pray for peace in your country, your thoughts have power, send everyone peace of mind, love and light within your heart, and by that, you will massively contribute to your country.
    Warmest regards,

  303. Wow R, sending you an abundance of love and strength from Australia! The world is ridiculous, build anyway!
    Sam xo

  304. Erin

    Do not give up, keep building. Sending you love and hugs.

  305. Katrin

    Thank you Marie! Such a beautiful episode.
    Meditation and excercise (for me its walks with and without my Border Collie Cruiser in my local community and weekly Dru Yoga) have made such a huge difference in my life!
    These habits keep me cantered and living from a place of love. Love for my real, authentic,genuine self and love for others. This allows me to serve and inspire every day.
    I work with 0-5 year olds as an educator and it keeps me in the moment and lights me up every day.
    When I recently made a career change to this sector I could have given up often. I was studying, working and being a busy Mum of three school aged children of my own. Let’s not forget the partner of a soldier too (who is often away)!
    When I felt like I couldn’t possibly go on because it was all too hard and I was so, so tired…I drew on affirmations and the habits of meditation, exercise and a healthy diet and lifestyle to get me through. I also surrounded myself with positive, like-minded people who believed in me and I journaled like crazy, putting my dreams, hopes,aspirations and goals on paper and then into actions. I researched, reached out and made connections and then I learnt to let go and trust! As I worked from my soul’s purpose, from a place of love everything started to fall into place.
    I still have a long way to go as I realise more study in Community Services is a real possibility for me but I know I can do it! I can make a difference to families with young children. I do it every day – just by being me and doing what I do because it lights me up from the deepest part of my being. I know you can do it too!
    All my love,

  306. Today’s episode was beautiful but also got me so fired up and pumped. I, like so many others have felt a degree of how you feel but it’s true, do anyway – it’s perfect and really works.
    It’s soul food.
    Sending you, love, blessings and encouragement.
    Amma x

  307. Eloïse

    My dear R ! You touched my heart and I wanted so badly to find beautiful words for you, share an inspiring experience. But I cannot find something to say that would be enough. So I will just tell you that I’m thinking about you right now, I will pray for you every night before going to bed and that from now on, you’re in my heart.

  308. Alana

    Hey R,
    Its great you stepped up and asked the question~ What’s wonderful is that what you experience, is what many of us, including myself experience and I’m way over in Vancouver Canada! 🙂 Find the joy in what you do… think about that and experience that – we only have the present so perhaps let what moves you in the moment be what inspires you to step forward – even into uncertainty..

    And part 2 – that I love to teach yoga and share my energy with students and that currently, I am in a situation where the space I have – will soon be gone. I am reluctant to “promote” or create new events in that space. or to attract new students as soon it will ‘ all be gone!” But… I have to believe that if I do – it will all work out.. and another space will show up :0 Law of Attraction!
    All for now!

  309. Arika

    R, I want to thank you for your courage in writing to Marie and sharing with her the questions on your heart- my sister and I really needed this question and answer with some struggles on our hearts as well. I admire so much your strength in pushing through to your dreams and your success in your career in the midst of the uncertainty you face every day. I struggle with depression also, and I have found that exercise helps me greatly! I am going to work on Marie’s suggestion of meditation as well, and I hope that both of her suggestions help your body, mind, and soul. You and your community are in my thoughts and prayers!

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Yes, Arika! It does take courage to share struggles and be vulnerable. Thank you for sharing yours––we’re so glad you’re here.

  310. Thank you… thank you R !!!! … for reaching out!
    woW, what a huge reminder of the love that’s present now, connecting all of our hearts… in real time! ~ i’m drinking this up, and sending this love out now, straight into your beautiful heart and mind ? to calm you and guide your way.
    ~ani (botanical perfumer in california)

  311. Arthur Fonseca

    Marie, your loving energy to R reflected here in my house in Brazil and helped me value more my own life in the world.
    R., this single question of yours was the ignition of a huge positive energy wave. I bet it will return to you 3 times stronger!
    Finally, I’d like to share a book on physical exercise that just changed my thoughts about it. Exercising now reminds me I’m strong enough to do anything I want, as long as I persist and be patient. It’s called “Spark: How exercise will improve the performance of your brain”, by Dr John J. Ratey and Eric Hagerman. You can even get it online. All the best on your challenges, I am sending my best thoughts to you.

  312. glenda pitman

    Hello precious R. You are a shining example of asking for support and receiving it in truckloads. I can’t add much to the powerful words that have flooded in…..and these words are uplifting me also and affirming for me that there is so much light in a world that can be perceived as so dark so much of the time. Find a clearing in your day each day for a quiet practice, to tune into the light within you then go shine it bright. renew your light within each day with that quiet practice then go shine it bright again. You have a passion and you have recognised your passion and your gift and it is in the creation and the giving that the power lies. I am just so enthused by the concept of “build anyway”. It is a beautiful act of defiance and gift to all who are connected to you. I am now connected to you, as all in this group are and I urge you to “build anyway” and share your creations with us. You are one powerful force and I send you much much love and support. Love from Australia.

  313. Ariane

    You are so not alone R. I think about the futility of life all the time, but when I look at my beautiful boyfriend or play with my awesome nieces and nephews, I totally see the point again! The key is to focus on the right things and do the thing you love the most, in your case, you’re lucky: you found it! 🙂 Love from Montreal!

  314. Sofia Fonseca

    Dear R., I am sending you love from my heart. You are not alone. I really wish your country can find peace in the near future, because you have all suffered so much… I can only send you love and light and I promise you, you will be in my thoughts.
    Big, huge hug.

  315. I stand with you, R.! We all do 🙂
    Keep going for love, for the change you want to see in your country, for beauty.

  316. Sue Kapilik

    Hi R and Marie. Here is a beautiful song based on the “build it anyway” concept almost word for word.

    Have a listen and may you both be blessed. You both might want to add it to your playlists. May it feed your souls. Love and light. Sue

  317. R’s situation reminded me of the Tibetan monks that create amazingly beautiful sand mandalas, and brush them away to symbolize impermanence. Even though the mandalas are brushed away they don’t disappear from your mind and heart, and you are still touched by their beauty.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Exactly, Kaluwa! People are touched by the beauty of R’s buildings too. Thank you for this beautiful reminder.

  318. R, your story is extremely heartfelt. We all, in some way, believe that we have stories potentially similar to yours- but only YOU will ever know what it is like to be in YOUR situation. Marie’s 2 step action plan is magnificently appropriate- every day to clear the head space and get the body in motion. And then, to know that millions of people here are 100% behind you- urging you every inch of the way to become your very best in the most horrendous of situations; to give you the inner strength to put the smile on the face regardless; and continue finding the way forward. We all need to BELIEVE that if we continue doing the RIGHT things, the universe will (in the most unexpected fashion), reward us – your greater power will ensure it – whether it is in the words of Dr Jayne Gardner:
    1. Ipeseity (Neuroscience).
    2. Zero Point Field (Quantum Physics).
    3. True Self (Psychology).
    4. God (Religion).
    5. Soul, Source, Spirit (Spirituality).

    Be Strong.
    With much affection to you all,

  319. Oh Marie! You made me cry. Thank you for your light.

  320. Dear R, hearing your question made me imagine as if you’re building ice sculptures for parties that later are melted, or sand castles by the beach that later are destroyed by the ocean when the tide rises. Still ice sculptors and sand castle artists build them anyway even though they know their art will be destroyed in time. Now that I think about it, our job as Life Coaches is a bit similar to this situation as well. What I mean is that we give our all for our clients so they can feel good and live a life they love and enjoy, but still they’re the ones in control do to with their lives whatever they want, even to the point of destroying it if so they desire. At this point our “art” would also be lost forever. So, I recommend you to find fulfillment and joy in the process of creating the art rather than in keeping it intact. Maybe this can help you when you’re building although once you’re done creating your piece, let it go. I believe by doing this you will feel free of the final piece’s state, you will be able to focus on staying creative, and you will also be a great example to those in your community demonstrating you can still feel joy, fulfillment, meaning and success amidst your situation in your country. Best wishes for you and all yours.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Well put, Claudia! Impermanent things can still have very real, tangible value. Your examples are spot on. 🙂

  321. Shelly

    Dear R,
    I am so moved by your courage and your willingness to be seen. Please know that you matter, and your work matters. The love and joy you bring to those around you can never be destroyed or lost. As a very wise friend once told me, you are a voice in this world, and the world needs to hear you. Thank you for sharing your heart with all of us here. Sending you lots of love.

  322. Kate

    Even if you have something taken away from you, you will always have the lessons you have learned. No one can take away your knowledge and lessons, no one.

  323. Cecil Scott

    R, I cannot tell you how much your message moved me. Others have said it better than I can, but your passion for what you do makes you truly special, a unique gift to the world. This is what Marie has been telling us since the beginning! Never forget how much you have to give — because the best work comes from people who are passionate about what they do. The obstacles you face are unfathomable, and I can only ask that you find a way to keep yourself safe (it is not selfish of you to do so), so that the lucky world can benefit from the gift that is you.

  324. Anna

    Thank you for this post today! R, your question demonstrates courage and strength which is all about being resilient. Reaching out for support has helped us all and I really appreciate your question. Marie has offered great tips that are also my ‘go to’ tools when depression strikes. My heart resonates deeply to your situation and want you to know that I will also meditate with you daily now. And will also celebrate your artistry too. Never give up on it! The world needs you and your talent. Special thanks to Marie for your innate ability to offer wisdom that is always well received! Blessing.

  325. Dorothy Mortimore

    There is a saying: “The day you were born was the day God decided the world could not go on without you.” And it is so very true R. You are necessary, you are seen and you are loved. You are the ONLY one who can fulfill your purpose. The world needs you and I need you. I am praying for you and your country.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      That’s such a beautiful quote, Dorothy, and so true! The world needs R and I hope she’s feeling strong and inspired from the support our amazing community is giving her. Thank you for being a part of it. 🙂

  326. I’m consistently aware of the impermanence of what I achieve or create, yet, not doing is not an option because not doing is more painful than doing with the knowledge that nothing lasts. Doing, building, creating makes me feel alive and in the end that’s what makes my life matter.

  327. Marie, you nailed it…again!

  328. Mo

    Hi R,
    I feel specially identify with your issue. I have been living many changes in my life in recent years, and I feel inspired to share that one of them have had related to my own death, it means, my own impermanance. Before facing the fact that I won´t be here forever, I used to think that life was permanent jajajaja. I didn´t have “consciesness” about death, it was an intellectual concept, as Steve Jobs said, but guess what? when the idea of death became a real possibility I just was shaked and had the chance to really understand that everything can change and dissapear in a second.. starting with me… so If I can not be here forever, which options do I have while “my moment” comes?… well, starting giving me, finding a new meaning to my life. In your case, you really now that you love being an architect, so, take that and make it better. Put all your heart in the present moment and give all those good things you have and just leave the expectation for being here forever and just give what corresponds, without expectation, just give and, in the end, I think, you will feel full and empowered.

  329. Sundai

    Dear R,
    Just as any great architecture is constructed one brick or one nail at a time, you only ever need take one step at a time. Knowing that you only ever have to take one step at a time can really help alleviate the feelings of overwhelm that might prevent you from doing what you are here to do. Taking time everyday to listen to that quiet voice within you is invaluable. From that quiet space you might like to ask, “What is one simple step I can take to move me closer to my dream? Then wait, be open for an answer it will come. It may come as a thought or idea, or it may be later you see a sign or meet someone in your community who can help you with the next step. Your community, your country, the world need your living example of belief, courage and creativity. Much peace and happiness to you R.

  330. J

    Wow. What a community! What a beautiful, global, diverse group of women and men who can write this HUGE of a comments section 100% positive, tearjerking, inspiring, encouraging love!!! I only recently stumbled onto your blog, Marie. I signed up for your emails right away. You are really doing something great here. You strike that chord! For R, look how you have already given us all the gift of YOU. I thank you for having the courage to be you, to reach out, to express your vulnerability in a situation it might be extra difficult to do so. It takes so much strength to stay open, to stay hopeful, joyful, to be willing to build in the face of destruction. But you have already built something here that cannot be destroyed. You have certainly inspired me, and it seems many others as well. I have you on my heart, I send you my heart.

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      Thank you so much, J! We’re so glad you’re here and we appreciate the love you’re sending R’s way too.

  331. HI R, my heart goes out to you. I know how painful it is to feel you’re alone. The darkest time was when I believed God had abandoned me. Here’s something that made a huge difference: it’s called a ‘muga box’. It’s a small lovely looking box which you put somewhere you can see all the time. In it you put your micro-moments of joy, those small moments that flit through your life so quickly, you can barely notice them – here in England it might be a tree covered in blossoms (it’s spring) – or a sunset – or the smile of a baby, you get the idea. Each moment is precious and belongs in the muga box. Try it for 7 days and, as Marie said, let us know how it worked for you. xxx Sue

    • Mandy - Team Forleo

      The muga box sounds lovely, Sue! I heard about something kind of similar a few years ago, though I’m not sure if it has a name.

      You put 12 marbles into a box and when you’re feeling totally happy and at peace with yourself, all 12 marbles are inside. But when you’re feeling down about something, you take a marble out for each thing that’s bothering you. The goal is to keep the box somewhere you’ll see it every day, and it’ll probably bother you to see these pretty marbles outside the box where they can roll away and get lost. So it’s a reminder to do things that make you happy and fulfilled so you can hold on to the marbles and keep them as a reminder to do what makes you feel whole.

  332. Tamara

    Dearest R,

    I am sending my love, prayers and light to you in Iraq! We are all sisters in this world and I thank you for being here. Thank you for reminding me when I feel alone that indeed, we have each other. You deserve to feel the love from this community and others right next to you and from across the globe. Thank you for reaching out, thank you for your voice, thank you for your light. You are a beacon of hope and strength for all of us. I needed to feel helpful today so thank you for giving me that gift. Thank you for connecting with my heart. May peace be with you my soul sister. All my love, Tamara xoxoxo

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