What I Learned in 2016

What I Learned in 2016

 

Picture of me in a hedgehog onesie on a giant teddy bear from New Years 2016, photo by Jane West.

2016 brought a lot of learning and a lot of joy.

My biggest lesson of 2016 was figuring out how to serve myself first in order to serve everyone else sustainably. People had always warned me about “burning out” but I had never hit my limit. Creating the 2nd Annual Women Grow Leadership Summit in Denver for over 1,200 women was my greatest accomplishment. It was also what broke me.

Although I could have blamed external challenges for breaking me. I realized that all my external challenges were reflections of my own inner struggles. So I went about investing everything I had into working on myself. Yoga, meditation, books, dance, music, purpose-driven leadership, cannabis, psychedelics and the School of Womanly Arts were my practices. We found a new CEO to take over my role at Women Grow on July 1st and I focused on myself full-time.

Leaving the CEO role at Women Grow was the hardest transition I’ve ever made. The unexpectedly tough part of aligning your personal and professional purpose is allowing them to separate when needed. It took me almost three months just to stop thinking of myself and my role as one.

I ran away to play in Spain, speak in Berlin, camp at Burning Man, and work Symbiosis. I traveled 26 weeks of 2016. I learned a lot.

I learned how to love myself unconditionally. I learned how to stop using food to solve problems that food doesn’t solve (and lost 30 pounds). I learned how to stop caring about what people who don’t care about me think. I learned how to put myself first every day. I learned how to process dark emotions and self-hatred. I learned to stop over-thinking the past at the expense of being present. I learned I didn’t have to be afraid of my full emotional range.

I took six months off for myself. The changes I’ve made to my mental, physical, and emotional health have just begun to benefit me. I have much more to learn–but I’m ready for the next challenge. I’ll be back at the 3rd Annual Women Grow Leadership Summit in a few weeks, where I’ll announce my next project. I invite you to join me at the summit, Feb 1-3. It’ll be an experience like you’ve never had. Click here for more info.

Scroll down to see how I learned how to be in a museum, how to Burn in Spain, new psychedelic treatments, the final Summit at Sea, winning licenses, and at the very bottom, everything else I’m up to this year.


I Learn By Teaching

I perfected the blend of education, inspiration, and community that encourages women to take huge risks. Over 1,200 women gathered in the Ellie Caulkin’s Opera House in Denver to hear 32 speakers, including Melissa Etheridge.

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I’m grateful to all our speakers, who brought advice from every industry, age, and experience…like Jeanne Sullivan, one of the best known female venture capitalists in the world as Wonder Woman from New York City.

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Or Renee Gagnon, the first transwoman to lead a federally legal cannabis company in the world, came from Vancouver.

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Sara Batterby taught how she would go on to complete the largest financial raise in the cannabis industry for a regulated business shortly after this event.

Join me at the 2017 Leadership Summit coming up in just a month.

2017 Leadership Summit Info


I Learn What Burn-Out Really Is

I was wiped after this event. I couldn’t think. We tried to do long-term planning but we had exhausted ourselves and the entire team. It was impossible to follow up on this momentum. I’m so grateful to the so many of you who gave me space during this sensitive period to grow and recover. I was no longer taking care of myself and I had failed to care for my team.


 I Learn How to Release


I Learn How to Be in a Museum

 

Being featured in the Oakland Museum’s exhibit on Cannabis in California was a first. You sometimes feel like you’re both predicting and making history on days like this. I’m grateful we got over a dozen women featured in this exhibit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


I wrote

You have everything you need to start. Every time you are waiting for another teacher, you are wasting time. Learn in practice, not study.


I Learn to Relax in Europe

Grateful to Bar-Keep for showing me the most diverse Burning Man event in the west. 2,000 Europeans gathered on a small plane in the Spanish desert for a week in scorching July to build a humble city and party down.


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Grateful for the invitation to speak at Tech Open Air in Berlin. I got to debut my talk on “Clarifying Your Calling with Cannabis” to a packed house.

Grateful to edge pushers like Cindy Gallop on “Why the Next Big Thing in Tech is Disrupting Sex” if you want to know what’s up after cannabis.


I Learn About Relationship…

Grateful for the many books I read on relationship this year…including American Savage, Goddesses Never Age, The Law of Attraction, The Art of Everyday Ecstasy, and More Than Two.

Excerpt from More Than Two

 


Learning at the Burn

Getting the bus tuned up before we leave for the Burn.

Playa-bound!

For my fourth Burning Man, I had the privilege of attending for 10 days and leading a camp of 35. Friends from across the world came. I learned to run my first electrical grid (with lots of trial and error). I found a pair of exceptional Tantra Energy Teachers and became enraptured with their workshops.

 


I Learn About Fear & Love

John Lennon and I share a birthday in October and this thought

“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.”
~ John Lennon


In support of #nationalcomingoutday I’m sharing why I’m bisexual. I’ve found that a person’s gender doesn’t affect my ability to co-create a loving relationship with them. Picture from the first week my girlfriend and I started dating in March. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈

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I Learn About Psychedelic Treatments at Horizons

The Horizons conference presented research on MDMA & psychedelics from celebrated universities…NYU, Columbia, John Hopkins.

Multiple studies showed patients experiencing up to 8 months of relief from symptoms with just one “magic mushroom” therapy experience. These “peak spiritual experiences” were leading to increased positive attitudes, altruism, and deeper development of social relationships.

I was seeing that we had extended our physical bodies past our ability to fill our lives with meaning. Alzheimer’s disease was preventable if we stayed mentally active and engaged. These patients showed how spirituality was actually a component of health, particularly at end of life.


I Learn Prototyping in November

I took Prototyping for Creative Innovation with Megan Goering, formerly of Google. We ran through prototyping techniques and tests until we could do them by habit.

I wrote out dozens and dozens of business ideas and then weighted them on factors like start-up costs and market size. I began testing messaging of all the different things. The cannabis helps with ideation but didn’t make narrowing down any easier.


I Learn About Sex & Sugar at Sea

On the eve of the election, I boarded a cruise ship for 3,000 “innovators” and we sailed out to the Caribbean. Marijuana was legalized in six states but we were all shocked by the Presidential election. We gathered to build new ways to a future we all want to live in. We workshop. We dance. We drink. We eat. We snuggle.

David Deida teaches us

“Sexuality is an art. There is no right way but when you see someone doing it right, you know.”

I attend panels like “Sugar is the New Tobacco” and learn from Dr. Dean Ornish that 86% of 3 trillion dollars spent in healthcare are spent on chronic care for mostly reversible conditions. We’ve created a food system, which externalizes all the costs of eating cheap food that causes illness.

Dr. Ornish reveals that “bad habits” are developed to deal with the isolation of modern life. He uses lifestyle as treatment by asking people to eat well, stress less, move more, and love more. He’s found that fear is not a sustainable motivators for people to change bad habits. You have to fill the voids those habits leave with even more joyful and pleasurable motivators.


I Learn Good Work Pays Off in December

Grateful to the Women Grow community in the Bay Area celebrating two years.

 

Grateful for the dispensary license process in Maryland where two teams I had advised won licenses.


I Learn There are Far Better Things Ahead Than Any We Leave Behind

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In the words of visual artist, Olivia Steele.


What’s is Jazmin Doing Next?

  • January 5th, San Francisco (and 30 other cities)
    • Seed School (Tickets) my 4-hour crash course on planning your cannabis business, getting a license, and pitching investors.
    • Women Grow Signature Networking Event (Tickets) Focusing on clarifying your goals and creating sustainable habits to pursue them with myself & Jess Dugan.
  • January 21-22, NYC
  • February 1-3, Denver
    • Join me at the largest event for women in cannabis in the world. Women Grow’s 3rd Annual Leadership Summit  (Register Now)
  • March 2nd, Bay Area (and 30 other cities)
    • Women Grow Signature Networking Event (Tickets) New information on how THC affects women’s health with Kym Ferrari of 4 Love Oil.
  • March 4-5, Bay Area
    • Women’s Visionary Congress Women and Cannabis Workshop (Register Now)

6 Comments

  1. Dearest Jazmin – thank you for this wonderful overview of both pain and joy. Thank you for opening the door for me to share my passions at last year’s Leadership Summit. That wonderful gathering reinforced what feeds my soul by fighting for legalization and regulation of cannabis and showing people the way for economic opportunity. Wishing you peace in the New Year despite the fears we might share for our world.

    Looking forward to another wonderful Leadership Summit and Women Grow events all year long.

    Reply
    • Thank you Jeanne! So glad to have you on this amazing new journey for women and our health. Very grateful to you and John.

      Reply
  2. Thank you for sharing with an open heart and mind. It’s so powerful to hear about nitty gritty challenges and the internal work that they necessitate. Keep doing you!

    Reply
    • Thank YOU Emma for reading and being brave enough to do your own inner work too!

      Reply
  3. Dear Jazmin, the challenge and opportunity we face as humans lies in the fact that we become who we really are through our choices. I believe that the true growth for all of us means increasing levels of spontaneous interaction with our environment, the courage to seek out new experiences, the tenacity to stick with projects and undertakings, the ability to decide what the real self wants and how to go about getting it, and the ever-widening ability to love and take part in meaningful human relationships. This is it! You just helped me to realize how powerful your message is, Thank you for that and Thank you for sharing yourself with me. What a beautiful way to start 2017! Happy New Year!

    Reply
  4. Jazmin, What I have read about what you have done makes me proud, amazed and a tad envious. So much work on learning and growing….lovely. Life has much in store for you and as you live your life with gusto, may the rough times be few and cushioned by good friends and the thoughts of all the good and wonderful times. You will really taste all life offers.

    The WG event was just amazing, and I have been at many.

    Reply

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