It’s Ok to FEEL OK (controversial?)

This ones actually called “I Feel Guilty or Disrespectful”…

This morning, another close friend, making it three in a little over a week, shared she was feeling bad for being ok or having many moments where she’s feeling good (~> she’s enjoying quality time in family ~  it having felt necessary, she realized, after a tough last couple years).

I understood the feelings that parade as guilt.

How can I feel good some days or maybe even most days right now when so many people are hurting physically, personally and/or professionally? 

It feels disrespectful, even.


This is my answer to self when I’ve experienced similar feelings (note: this is three weeks after writing a post talking about it being ok to NOT feel ok right now, both = valid, in short, it’s ok to feel *whatever* you are feeling, which may change minute time minute at times):

First, pain and joy co-exist. 

They do and have for always. The world is made up of it/of them both…if one lives, the other, too, can live and has since the beginning of time, without humans trying to change that fact. 

Just as rain falls or light comes every single morning, people have experienced life in wildly different ways.

This happened before Coronavirus/COVID and it will happen after, too. You were hurting while your neighbor played loud music while throwing a party. Or — your neighbor was crying in her car down the street, while you were laughing and tickling your son.

From wherever we’re sitting, just before all of this happened and still very much now, there were and are people in pain because they don’t have enough food or water or shelter. Millions upon millions. 

I hate to say it, but it’s true — that when it hits closer to home it hits us differently, maybe, but the truth isn’t any different and that is that you get to have your own (real) experience.  

You’re not turning a blind eye to the world around you and what’s going on *and* you also don’t have to shut down feeling ok or grateful that parts of you, maybe surprisingly throughout all this, have maybe been returned to a more solid state. 

What’s likely most true is that many of us are feeling the full range from completely tender and unsure to completely grateful and certain (at least about some things in our lives).

So ~ if you feel you can create something in this time, create. If you are mending relationships, wonderful. If you feel happy or peaceful or grounded, or for the first time in years, like the world is working at the speed of your soul, let it work —

It’s not wrong.

I think what it comes down to is that love doesn’t ever take a break. As evidenced by the countless of nurses and doctors who have worked tirelessly to support those  in need right now, love keeps working even as dark times loom…babies are still being born and people are still pledging their love to one other and families are reconnecting in a way they, maybe, haven’t done so in this way before…

And thank God for all the above — we can’t push away moments of might or of feeling good or of gratitude or say they‘re not worthy of living alongside everything else because it’s IN those very moments where love, opportunity and optimism is working…

It’s where we rise from.

It’s where we become well again.

We deeply need people who are feeling well because these are the people who can tip scales, who can give back to their community and world *with* that very wellness and love found or created…

It’s those people who are likely also doing something of great importance, too, inside their own FAMILIES (Mother Theresa‘s response when somebody asked how they, one lone person, could help create peace in the world: “Go home and love your family.”).

The truth is many are getting that very opportunity right now.

Whatever we do, we can’t stop seeing love, creating love or feeling any good feeling we can catch right now. 

We need those feelings very, very much.

Make happiness (or peace or gentleness) your business — especially now during these stay-at-home orders.

Life is good,




Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

While You’re Healing, Help Others Heal

Now that he’s in high school, I drive just under three hours every day to get him to and from school.

We had nine years of first living five doors down from school and then about three blocks from school and now we get to experience a whole new type of departure and arrival and a new, beep beep, part or side of our relationship, too — grateful my business allows me the opportunity to be this mobile.

I think of these three hours: “Look at what they’re allowing me to do, talk about, hear about or to more fully understand, or — look at who I can sit in comfortable silence with, stealing a glance, while hearing hip hop bounce from the one headphone he’ll sometimes put in.”


The cost of something is the connection or growth point to something else. Let’s not look solely at the cost of something (what’s been taken away), but at what’s being put in its place. There’s always some thing —or some one.

[Visiting Crumbs & Whiskers for the second time — this time, I surprised Nolan with a visit while he was healing from a concussion. If you live in LA, check C&W out. You can order tea or coffee and snacks while you and someone you love play with kittens and cats who have been saved from being euthanized. Prrrfect thing, really…while you’re healing, help others heal heal,✌🏽

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life!

Life is good,




Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

Don’t Do THIS (suffering story)

(In The “Wild” of Our Own Homes)

I felt feelings that in 45 years I had not experienced before.

The drive up to what would be base camp before my days in the wild was exactly that ~ wild.

My mind, because I was allowing it to, ruminated on the days coming without food (water only), no shelter and no social interaction and couldn’t decide which would be hardest.

My body had buzzed with an I can’t wait to do this quality (seven months of prep), then, as it happens, was buzzing with something that felt altogether different.

It makes sense that I would feel new feelings as I had never chosen to do something like this before (plus, I was allowing my mind to do what it wanted with me 🌀), but, that said, I was well-versed in seeing the benefits to my growth inside chosen challenges, which reminds me of two things: 1) if you choose experiences that challenge you, did you know that you suffer less at the hands at the ones that come un-chosen? and 2) if we believe that evolution is based both on the quality of our attention and how we decide and CHOOSE something different when we are inside conflict, then this vision quest and these days or months staying at home during this pandemic can work for us.

Both the idea of chosen challenges and what feels like a solid truth behind our personal development have been such helpful truths for me — over the last decade, especially…

I’ll cut to the chase in this share, but the second that I hugged Josh and Nolan when they picked me up (they had driven me there, too), you know what I said that doesn’t hint at, but that is fully indicative of the experience I allowed myself to have?

[Crying as I hugged him, Josh said and cried through his words, “Now I can tell you that I was so worried about you”, then, I, now shaking from the build up of days that I couldn’t wait to tell them all about: “You didn’t have to worry, it was amazing, (pause, cry, pause, cry), it was so AMAZING.”

This very experience, the one that made me feel like I might throw up on the way there (before I had even ventured out), ended up being one that I now place up there with the birth of my child.

It showed me once and again that pain and joy co-exist, hi and thank you, life, and that there are treasures that can be unpacked and experienced during challenging times.

During stay-at-home orders, and with a high risk person living with me, I’ve been asking myself, how will I choose something different inside any conflict or challenging feelings felt (which I have felt). And, how can I make [how can WE as a family] make this a chosen challenge…we are choosing to stay-at-home, which on some days may feel like a low level challenge (because there are real problems and true challenges going on in the world — we can make what happens inside here something else, to have a different quality and we can come out the other end saying, “No…it was amazing (pause, cry, pause, cry)…”.

All of us genuinely can do this inside the “wild” of our own homes now.

We can take it (the chosen or unchosen challenge 😉) and transform ourselves with seeing it as exactly that — as a transformative time, one word, action, I’m sorry and habit at a time.

Maybe do what I did in going back to the basics every minute/hour/day of each day on my solo journey — when feeling challenged, walk short or long distances, drink a snack of water, ask~ what am I really hungry for in life?, do another meditation, create a ritual, pray, set intentions for the morning/ afternoon/dark of night, write more, get after that burning idea (write more), sit, breathe, look at the tree long to really see it, stare at a leaf in your hand…

In maybe other words, keep your light on.

[PHOTO ABOVE, 8:19pm: The time, at sunset each night in July, that Josh and Nolan said they would pray for me and p.s. I’ve talked about being gentle with yourself during this time, both on social media, my blog and to my clients and newsletter community, but this doesn’t mean sit back and don’t do anything ~ it means doing everything you need to do to not suffer through this…if that means taking a nap, take it, if that means creating your next biggest business, create it, but gift yourself the opposite of the need to suffer unnecessarily, ✨).

🍃 ⛰ 🏠 🕯 🌎


Make happiness (or peace or gentleness) your business — especially now during these stay-at-home orders.

Life is good,




Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur 

Take YOU Over Completely

We slice and dice ourselves into different parts to fit different environments and end up diluting our personalities and power so much that the best someone might get, either professionally or personally, is a lukewarm version of us (we, too, in turn, get a lukewarm version of our life — it’s this lukewarm version that keeps us at least one arm’s length to true contentment and to those feelings of meaning we most want as part of our daily lives).

No loving leader in the world changed it by fitting in or only using part of his or her voice or true expression. We are all leaders (part of what I’ll share this weekend at prison, we are) ~ leading or nurturing families, businesses, corporations, movements, some of which we can essentially call our children (they are our wishes let loose on the world, a  movement if I’ve ever known one). And likely the most important of all – leading ourselves.

Whatever you consider your thing beyond the 9-5 or in addition to it — the thing that you’re madly called to do (what you consider your art, your passion or purpose projects, your use of your wild creativity and/or solutionizing for the greater good etc.) — it all must have (gets to have) the full expression of you baked into it.

That most full expression needs to take you over completely.

YOU, and no one else, need to take you over completely.


[📸: Mayan ruins in my homeland last July]

Make happiness your business by creating your authentic brand…enjoy your business, enjoy your life!

Life is good,




Michelle Ghilotti
Success Designer, Brand Activator & Social Entrepreneur