Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]
Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]
Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]
Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]
Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]
Leilani Münter is a professional race car driver and an environmental activist who uses her voice in the number one spectator sport in America as a catalyst for change. [www.leilanimunter.com]
By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]
Sophie Chiche, lifebyme.com founder and curator, enjoys asking deep questions and living a life of meaning. Today she's launching Shape House, an urban sweat lodge, a place to melt away fears and fat. [www.shapehousela.com]
Entrepreneur and writer Mastin Kipp founded TheDailyLove.com, which merges pop culture with inspiration, and co-founded The Love Yourself Company, an apparel company that has started a global self-esteem movement. [www.TheDailyLove.com]
Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]
Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Chairman of The Elders, a group of world leaders who address some of the world's most pressing problems. He works energetically for human-rights and in his ministry. [www.tutu.org]
Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]
Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]
Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]
Simon Mainwaring is an ex-Nike/Wieden creative, former Worldwide Creative Director at Motorola/Ogilvy, branding/advertising writer, author/speaker/blogger, Australian, idea geek. [www.simonmainwaring.com]
Shannon Bindler is a style editor, life coach, and the co-founder of Get Up Girl, an empowerment company that inspires women to shine. [www.getupgirl.com]
Grammy-nominated art director/designer/photographer Mathieu Bitton has designed over 450 CDs and movie posters. He's a renowned collector of and authority on black films and their soundtracks. [www.candytangerine.com]
Opus Reps founder and agent-producer Jorge Perez travels the world producing photo shoots with great photographers and celebrities. He's also very involved with Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles. www.opusreps.com
Lust. It’s not just the eroticism of sex. It’s being in lust with your life and letting that guide you. That’s how I’ve been guiding myself. It’s very body-based. It’s very “I want.” It’s this pull, this really erotic feeling, like a tingling almost. I trust my lust. It’s not going to steer me in a detrimental way.
When I worked at a female-owned and -operated adult store, I read a lot of books about polyamory and BDSM. I thought, Oh my gosh. This is me. This is what I want. I lust for this. It took a long time to feel comfortable saying I identify as a sexual submissive. I also identify as a polyamorous person. I’m now becoming comfortable with all of that.
For some people in the BDSM community, it’s very much about play. We go and dress up and I paddle you a little bit. For me, it’s a path of discipline and personal growth. It’s a path of sensation – not for the sake of sensation, but for the sake of connecting with someone else through sensation.
I battle with depression and I used to go numb. Now, when I have depression, I play with someone. I don’t use it to narcotize myself. I use it to move through the depression, and I feel light after I play. I feel connected on a spiritual and emotional plane, not just in my body. It’s not only about the act of sex. It’s about lust for life and the juice of life. That doesn’t have to happen through sex, although it’s a great way in.
I keep coming back to the idea of resilience. How do I cultivate a sense of resilience in myself and others? I don’t believe resilience is an innate trait. And without it, I don’t think anything else is possible. Even if you’re just going to get out of bed today, you’re still engaged in some bit of life. That’s resilience. You keep going. Not just existing, but moving toward what you want.
When it comes to sex, so many people don’t trust themselves. They’re scared to lose control. They don’t trust that they can navigate the complexity. They’re afraid of the rawness of sex. It’s not pretty. It’s not some cute little girl waving her hair around. Sex itself is raw and exquisitely ugly, and I love that.
What’s really at the core is that people are afraid to cultivate an inner sense of “I know what I want, I trust my lust, and I’ll be okay.”
– Jamila Dawson