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
From the beginning of this year I have been blessed to always be working on something meaningful, from helping to create and perform an original interactive theatre piece with one of my closest friends, to writing songs for a new project with my partner. Being a part of something I believe in is what gives my life meaning.
It has always been my passion to create meaningful art, just from falling in love with novels, plays, films, and songs in my childhood. It is easy to lose sight of that and get caught up in what everyone else says you “should” be doing. Whether they’re telling you not to pursue your passion or trying to tell you the way to do it, I definitely got lost for a few years before realizing that I knew the way all along!
If that lost feeling creeps up on me again, the easiest way for me to recover is just to take some time alone and think of as many things as I can that I am grateful for. It helps to remind me that every day I am closer to the life I envision for myself. The only way to get closer is to be here, now.
My good friend and the director of the show I am currently doing inspired me to start meditating a few months ago, and it has changed my life in ways I could not have predicted. Meditation has helped me to find what really matters to me, to be confident in my talent and to be happier than I have ever been just by being present with whatever is happening. Much of the show was actually conceived and developed through meditating and then improvising scenes and writing from that place of connection.
I could go on about how fear is at the root of everything in this world we wish we could change, and the thing is, we can, if we stop being afraid that it won’t happen. Take a moment to sit with yourself with unconditional love until you get to a place of non-judgment, and then ask yourself what you want to do. The hard part is believing in yourself later and following through!
Once I stopped being afraid that I might not get to experience the life I want and just had absolute faith that I would, all of the things I wanted started coming in to my life.
– Tanya Zoeller
*Life By Me would like to congratulate Tanya on her show, Mindspin, currently running in Los Angeles.