How to Pick Your Talisman

What do all of these photos have in common? (Hint: you might need to enlarge them to find out)


These were taken years apart…and at really wildly different stages of my life (single, dating, engaged, pregnant, married, a new mama…) and the only reason I don’t have even older ones in here is because my computer recently crashed and I can’t bring myself to deal with the tech-aspects of recovering my photos and reorganizing them.

The one things that is common in all of these if the fact that I am wearing my absolute most favorite piece of jewelry: my black pearl and leather necklace.

There’s something about it. Simple, elegant, and badass all at the same time. It’s feminine, earthy, oceany and exotic. It goes with pretty much everything, and I never take it off. Well, except for massages. I take it off for those.

I can wear it in saltwater and in the shower and in my yummy pampering baths. The leather gets softer and softer, and the pearl gets more rich when it is spending time in the ocean…from whence it came.

Why do I wear it all the time? It’s not just about convenience, although it is pretty awesome that I have my elegant badass piece of jewelry on at all times.

It is about the way it makes me feel.

The funny thing is people don’t always get it. They say to me, “You are always wearing that necklace! What’s up with that?” or, “Yup…there’s Ana and her necklace” as if there’s something wrong with that.

I don’t give a shit, because you don’t ask someone, “Why are you always wearing the same wedding ring?” Why not? Because it symbolizes something eternal and ineffable.

Same with my black pearls and leather. They help me step into my sexiness, my connection to nature, my power and timelessness, my femininity and my badass. When I wear my necklace, I don’t think about if it’s the “right” piece.

It know its the freakin’ right piece.

My husband showed his knowing of me back in the day, when he proposed to me with a ring of one beautiful black pearl on leather.

How could I not say yes?!

I had heard of talismans before, in my teenage years when I explored Native American culture, in my 20s when I delved into shamanism, and again more recently, when bullshit exorcist (and one of my biz coaches) Fabeku Fatunmise asked me what talismans I would choose for myself.

But at that time, it had never occurred to me that I had worn one for over 7 years.

It was about a month ago, when taking it off for a massage, that I realized how right it felt to have it on, and how naked I felt without it.

My necklace was bought by me, for me, on a surfing trip after my recent divorce and my second more-than-annoying run in with cancer. It was a splurge, and it felt absolutely right.

I have never questioned it.

I put it on in the shop, the sound of the ocean waves crashing just outside. The stunning French woman behind the counter at Pachamama looked at me and said, in a romantic accent through her full lips, “Yesssss. You must geeeet zat.”

Oh hellz yeah.

I wear it every day…it’s been on me when I cry, when I skinny dip under the moon, when I reach the summit of the highest peak in Mongolia – pregnant. I was wearing it through breakups when I growled at an ex in Vegas (yes, I literally growled), and wilderness trips with my girlfriends amongst granite peaks.

It was on me when I started my business, when I quit my J.O.B., when I moved to Alaska, when I sold my condo in Telluride, when my heart was aching. My baby can pull on the leather without me fearing she’ll break it, and when she sticks it in her mouth, she is tasting continents and oceans and sweat and tears.

I used to think talismans were something you had to look at a lot to get their power. But now I realize it was simply by knowing what it symbolized for me, and by choosing to hold it close to me, that I shared its energy and it became my talisman.

I think talismans are important. I’m a bit too much of a multipassionate to commit to a tattoo, but if I ever conjured one up that felt like it would fit forever, I’d probably get one. So, I’ll stick to my necklace for now. I also have other stones, and fabrics, and essential oils that I use.

What are your talismans? What are those things in your life that when you connect with them, you step into your highest truth and power?

wonderwomanmugIf you don’t have any, what are one or two you can think of right now? Here’s another one of mine – I use it before many of my coaching calls with clients and sip exquisite teas with heavy whipping cream…

How to Pick Your Talisman

If you’re having trouble, here are some tips:

  • If you don’t know where to start, begin with getting clear on how you feel when you are tapped into the flow. If you need more help with this, check out the free Clarity + Courage course. This could be one feeling or a bunch of feelings, but whatever it is, be clear about what this FEELS like, and don’t get caught up in the word you use for that feeling. THEN, pick your talisman based on if it helps you feel that way.
  • Do you have any go-to items of clothing or jewelry that you wear when you’re feeling down? How do they make you feel? If it’s feeling more connected to your truth and your inner power (aka ziji), then this could be a talisman for you.
  • Are you attracted to certain stones or materials? Like granite, or quartz, lapis lazuli, silk, velvet, leather…Do this make you feel connected to your most magnificent self?
  • Try to pick things that are accessible to you at all times, or at least easily accessible. That way you can tap into them when needed or on a regular basis.
  • Is there a movie you love to watch that, when you’ve gotten to the credits, you feel like anything is possible, or that you are calm and centered and grounded and at peace, or however the hell you really want to feel? For me, it’s movies like The Matrix, or Empire Strikes Back. When I watch those, even making the bed becomes a Jedi practice.
  • Is there a song, an essential oil, a flower, a picture (you get the idea) that helps you tap into this juicy feeling of yours?

Happy talisman hunting!