On big girl panties & not taking sh%t: 7 lessons from a year of soul warriorship


lisa fabrega



It was the beginning of the year and I was sitting on a plane, overlooking endless cloud cities lit up with the pinkish hues of a setting sun. I had been asking my soul for months: what’s my power word for this year?  So far, I had gotten… nothing. I was starting to get frustrated as I scrolled through social media post after post with people announcing their “words of the year.”
Why was my soul being so damn quiet about this?

As I looked out the window, some 33,000 feet in the air, I asked the question one final time.

Before I could finish my question, an internal voice blurted out “SHOWSTOPPER.”

I burst out laughing. Oooookay then! I thought to myself. Your wish is my command.

And that began the year of show-stopping soul warriorship.  

I like the word “challenge” as a descriptor for what happened this year, because it wasn’t the year of the beat-down (like 2015 was). Instead it was the year in which I was presented many “obstacle courses” that were training grounds for more gains in personal badassery and queendom.   

I find challenges are often initiations and invitations to step up our power and our mission in bigger ways. That definitely happened on personal and professional levels this year.

And as always, there were huge, powerful lessons in these challenges. So, below are 7 lessons I took away from this year. May they serve you as much as they did me!

Hire for alignment.

I’ve been learning this one for years now, but I find that every year, I come to understand this on more nuanced levels. I hired several people this year to advise me and to work on my team. For the most part I got HUGE value from these hires.

But in some instances, though I got huge value, I ultimately found some people could not get me as far as I want to go, for totally DIFFERENT reasons than the ones I hired them for.  

For example, if you hire someone to help you triple your income this year, because they are really good at that… but they don’t yet have a grasp on how to have good quality of life and lots of space to dream and be creative… they are going to ask you to do things to triple your income and probably get you there… but your quality of life will suffer and you’ll be working more than ever.

Or you can hire someone for your team who is the best at what they do. But what if they don’t define integrity like you do and have wounds from their past that they have not healed? You’ll have a person great at what you hired them for, but they might end up engaging in dishonest behavior or project their issues onto you personally. That means they might be a good job description match, but not a good personality or values match.

Don’t hire someone obsessed with their waist size and calorie count, if you are trying to become more body positive and love yourself as you are. Don’t hire a business coach who has a pile of cash but no life, if you’re trying to up your income AND your quality of life.  

Hire someone who is not just good at what you are hiring them for — but look at the other aspects of their life and business too. Make sure that the entire holistic picture of what you want, is something that person values too. Do they have to be perfect at it? No, of course not. Even our coaches are human and are working on things. No person is perfect, even the experts.

This also doesn’t mean you should hire a “yes man.” I always hire people who are going to push and challenge me to see more for myself, and catch my blind spots.  

But this year, whenever I have hired someone who wasn’t aligned with the areas I value most, I ended up getting what I wanted, but at the cost of something else I valued.

Lesson learned: Hire for alignment.

Trust your gut.

Yes, I know I write you about this literally every day. But that is because the levels to which we trust our soul are always expanding and deepening. From the moment we are born we are told NOT to trust that little voice within and instead trust the external voices of society. So, the process of allowing your soul to lead your life and work is a never-ending one. I still discover ways in which I don’t listen to my soul (or as others call it, “your gut”), even after mastering this enough to teach it to my high performing clients.

This year I went against my gut in several areas. I do it very rarely now, but I still do it, and then learn to trust my soul even more every day. When I did not listen to my soul, it resulted in having to let go of someone I hired to help with certain aspects of my business for dishonest behavior, getting a weird feeling about a dude my friend wanted to introduce me to, ignoring it, and then him fetishizing & objectifying me at a party in front of many people, temporarily getting sucked back into some toxic dynamics in my family I had long divested myself from, and getting stuck traveling with a very mean, fake-nice person.

In each of these instances, I felt something in me want to raise her hand. But my Ego subtly bypassed it by telling me I was being paranoid, and needed to be more understanding and flexible.  


Bottom line: that little voice that says “wait a minute” is NOT always being paranoid. She does not always “need to be more understanding or flexible.” Sometimes we do, but sometimes that’s our ego gaslighting our own instincts.  

In fact, the more I deepen into trusting in my soul, the more I realize how right she is from the get go. Often we say yes to things or go along with them, because we are taught “that is what nice people do.” But as a leader who works with leaders, every year I continue to learn that I’d rather be labeled a bitch by people who don’t get me, than betray my soul and be unhappy. Those who know me, know who I really am. Same goes for you.

Leaders are willing to say no even when they might offend people. I’ve always done that, but this year, as my leadership rose, and our community & company grew more than ever, I naturally had the opportunity to learn new and deeper levels of “no.”

When you up-level, you will sometimes be surprised at who drops out of your life.

It’s a given that when you level up, some people start dropping out of your life. Not everyone is going to go with you when you rise to meet the next level of your calling. That’s okay. This happens to everyone who is here to do great things in the world. It is totally normal.

Some people are only meant to go so far with you on the journey. Your path isn’t better or less than theirs, just different. The roads are simply diverging.

I actually tell my high-performing clients to expect this: when you uplevel, there are always going to be a few people who will drop off. Expect some hate mail. Expect people to act “concerned” that you’re changing. It just means you are right on track.

Often, upleveling comes with a little bit of grieving as we feel the resistance of people who can no longer walk with us. Sometimes you need to make time to mourn the old self you’ve shedded to make way for the newer, more authentic version of you. I’ve assigned many clients the homework of throwing a “funeral” for the old selves they just shed on their way to becoming an even more authentic and powerful leader.

But this year, I was surprised by some of the people who chose to not cross their next threshold of growth.

I made powerful invitations to people around me to step into a new portal of growth and was shocked in some instances when I watched them freak out and not be able to handle the invitation.

People aren’t always ready when we are. And that is okay. Grieve it. Feel it.  

But remember, you are here to fulfill a mission and a calling. And as a leader, staying back in an old vibration because you’re afraid to lose someone is not an option. There are millions of people waiting to be impacted by you, when you stand in your highest vibration as a leader. You let them down when you stunt your growth because you’re waiting for someone who isn’t ready to join you.

Expansions are uncomfortable AF & you’re allowed to ask for it to be easier.

Whoever made us believe that expansions are blissful awakenings where you effortlessly sprout gossamer wings and float up into the rainbow surrounded by butterflies… was probably spiritually bypassing like crazy.

Sure, expansion has a blissful stage. But that usually comes after the messy destructive and uncomfortable part where you sometimes feel like you’re dying. Honoring the expansions your soul calls forth for you can feel like dangerous work. It upheaves so much of what you thought you knew and who you thought you were.  

It involves the risk of disappointing people because you are no longer willing to be what you aren’t as a trade for their love. Expansions require stubborn faith in the void your soul is asking you to leap into. Even when your ego is like the siren tempting you with the false illusion that it’s “easier” to stay where you are and be comfortable.

I had two BIG expansions this year. One was an energetic download into my crown chakra (at the top of your head, and in hinduism it is considered to be the place where you download “divine” wisdom/messages).  

It was so potent, I was out for a week with migraines. I had to cancel all my calls with clients for a few days and lie in my room in the dark with a scarf over my head. (In many ancient cultural traditions, hair is considered to be an antenna and sometimes needs to be covered)

The scarf helped. But during one of the worst days, it finally dawned on me — my body was being asked to shift vibrationally to hold the energy I needed to hold for the new leaders I would be supporting. And my body simply wasn’t yet used to this new vibration.  

The information and energy pouring in to “upgrade” me to my next level of leadership was a bit much for my body to handle. That is why my head felt like it was being assaulted, my skin felt hypersensitive, and my hearing acute.

Lying in the dark with a mask over my eyes & plugs in my ears, there was too much information and energy pouring in, and it was simply too much for my newly adjusting body to handle.   

So I asked: Hey, I am totally cool with expanding in the direction I need to be going. And I’m grateful for all of this amazing info and energy you’re trying to send my way. But right now it feels like trying to jam a waterfall into a tea cup, so can you at least slow it down a little?

Within a few seconds I felt my crown opening up. A few hours later my migraine went away. Days later I was able to remove the scarf from my head.

A few weeks later, I finished out and didn’t even try to renew contracts with many business relations and clients. I loved them dearly but after that massive expansion, I knew we were done with our work and our paths were diverging. I wanted them to go get the help they needed next and I was clear — it was not with me from this point on.

I significantly upped my 1:1 prices to levels that my ego had a hard time even comprehending (and now 1:1 work with me for 2018 at that new prices is almost sold out with only two spots left).

And I turned down a lot of money from people who wanted to work with me and would happily have given me large sums of money to do so. But I could feel they were no longer a 100% match for the next generation of leader that I had just been through such an expansion to be able to hold & serve.  

On the leadership path, when we up-level, we not only change things like our revenue, the clients we work with, the opportunities we say yes to and more… we also literally energetically transmute.  

We expand to hold more light.
Our signature vibration shifts.

You’re allowed to ask for the metamorphosis to be a bit easier. Try it.
Hey, y’all up there — I’m all in for this expansion and I’m cool with it being a bit uncomfortable — that’s part of the process. But can you just take the edge off a little bit? Thank you so much.

There is one last thing you need to know about expansions.

Energetic transmutation requires new boundaries, self-care and dynamics. What worked just fine a week ago, is no longer sufficient. My self care routine and boundaries looked VERY different after my transmutation than just a few weeks before pre-expansion. Make sure you change those too so that you have adequate support for this new, more authentic, expanded leader that has arisen.

You are constantly evolving and that means your support structures will need to do the same.

Not everyone will resonate with your message. Filter those people out. Now.

I haven’t checked our company inbox, Facebook messages, or business page inbox for years now. My support team does that. Why? Because I am simply not available for hate mail, weird catty messages from people who are projecting their own insecurities, and people who don’t resonate with our mission. I don’t allow that to enter into my field of awareness, at all. I have a close circle of people I trust to call me out — I don’t need unhelpful feedback from people in their shadow who want to tear me or the company down.

But I deepened into a whole other level of filtering this year.  

This year, I set very big goals for myself. Having spent so many years supporting high-performing leaders, I know what makes a one hit wonder, and what makes a legacy-maker.

Legacy-makers don’t, for one second, allow people into their field who simply do not get where they are going. They cultivate this as a type of extreme focus.

For example, if you have an aligned goal to charge a high amount for your next program, don’t allow ANYONE into your sphere who does not believe that to be 100% a real possibility. And I really do mean ONE HUNDRED percent. Not 90%. Not 99%. If there’s a wobble, do not spend any more time sharing your energy or your goal with them.

Instead, only share your plans for this new program price with those who totally believe it’s going to happen, and that you are capable of doing it.

This is not the same as never getting constructive feedback from people you trust & have actually given consent for them to give you that kind of feedback. And it’s not the same as deluding yourself and setting totally unrealistic goals that are going to set you back because they are too much to accomplish in one year.

But if your SOUL is telling you to create that $100k program. Or a 300 person event. Or write a new, edgier book. And it is REALLY coming from your soul (that’s an art in and of itself that we teach in my 7 Soul Gates program because the ego loves to masquerade as the soul), then it is possible.

Your soul is connected to divine intelligence. It would never present a true Desire to you that is not plausible or possible. If you truly desire it, then it is meant to be and there is a way.

This year, when I raised my prices to levels that felt more aligned with my new levels of expertise & experience and made decisions to stop launching some programs, I shared the plans with a few people. If I even heard a shred of doubt in their voices or knew that they just couldn’t “see it,” I immediately stopped sharing my plans with them. I moved my time and energy only to those who could see my vision as clearly as I could and believed it was no big deal to accomplish.

When you’ve got big things to do, you need a lot of energy and support. Any person that you keep in your sphere who doubts you or thinks you should take it down a notch because of their own limitations, will only be draining the energy reserves you need to make it happen.

Anyone who feels the need to write your support team a two page email about why so many of your theories and thoughts are wrong and nitpicks your vision, should not have one millisecond of your time and attention. Because they do not resonate with your work. They don’t get it. It is just not for them. And therefore, their opinions, projections, and thoughts simply do not apply.  

DO have a diverse circle of people you trust who will call you out on your BS and keep you grounded. DO hire people who will help you see your blind spots, always.

As a result of me adopting this form of extreme focus, I met all of my “big” goals. Some that even surprised me. And do you know what happened when the doubters saw me achieve those goals? They were inspired to think bigger and reach higher.  

Win win.

Be brave enough to hold out for what you want.

Every time you make changes, there will be a “dead period” where it will seem as if you’ve really screwed it up. You’ll start to doubt the instincts that asked you to make the changes in the first place. You’ll raise your prices and wonder if you were a fool to think anyone would pay you that. Or you’ll turn down clients who you are no longer feeling called to support and wonder where the hell the other clients are and if they are ever going to show up. You’ll set boundaries with that person who keeps ghosting you and wonder if anyone will ever take an interest in you again.

Hold out.

Because, I promise, every.single.time., what you held out for will arrive. That or something better.

When I raised my prices there were two weeks of dead air, and then all of a sudden my programs were full or almost sold out. Women showed up who were happy to invest in themselves, and understood that an investment is part of the initiation. In the two week dead period, I could feel my ego wanting to shout “just go back to what you know! You could fill that in a second and feel secure about money!” but my soul said NO. WAIT.  

I stubbornly did not allow my belief in the arrival of what I desired to waver. I was clear on the version of me who already has what I desired. I knew the energy she cultivated to manifest those desires and how she showed up energetically as a leader. And I held my vibration there with great conviction.

You know what happened?  

Despite the story my ego wanted to spiral into, women showed up to enroll in these programs not only happily paying the new price, but also are some of the most aligned & sovereign clients I have ever had.

A male friend from many years back and I reconnected. I was very interested in connecting with him (and still thought he was handsome and interesting, so was curious to see if the spark was still there), but he kept saying he wanted to talk but then drop off the face of the earth every time we tried to set plans.

That might be fine with some people, but I know myself. That is not behavior that aligns with how I show up in my relationships. No judgment to him —  if that works for him, he should find people who are cool with that.

But I’m not available for the kind of dynamic where I show up with my full self to the table and someone shows up halfway. So I told him that, lovingly. Gave him a chance to meet me there or not, no judgments. He never replied. Which was a good thing because it showed me that our priorities were just not in the same place. Better to find out now, than to find out many frustrating months later, when precious time and energy has been spent for naught.

Lovingly stand your ground. Hold out for more.

Don’t take scraps or crumbs because you’re afraid you’re not going to get what you ACTUALLY want. That’s scarcity mentality. Remember, you would not have it as a desire if it wasn’t meant to be.

Be brave enough to trust and wait. Hold your ground when the ego wants to freak out.
It always pays off.

Being a nerd makes you stand out.

This year, I had two amazing opportunities.  

One was an interview with a colleague and someone I admire very much, one of the people on Oprah’s Super Soul 100. If you haven’t seen our interview yet, you can check it out here. It got over 11,000 views. Our third most viewed video ever.

I was informed by many people that my interview was one of the best interviews they had watched of her all year. I was extremely flattered, and yet it wasn’t a fluke.

I prepared. When leaders get an amazing opportunities, showing up in excellence is the only way they choose to show up & deliver.

As soon as her team reached out to me to let me know I had been selected for this interview, I nerded TF out. I knew this was a big deal. So, I did extensive research. I found out the questions everyone always asks her and that she is tired of answering. I listened to countless interviews she had done with other people to find the questions that no one had thought to follow up with. Hours of research and study went into a 10 minute interview.

We were in the middle of a big launch, but I still read the advanced copy of the book her team sent to me three times.

I took myself to the mountains, meditated, and wrote a list of 100 questions and then whittled them down to a select few that would really make her shine to my audience. The interview wasn’t about me, it was about promoting her and her book.

During the interview, she not only joyfully exclaimed three times that I was asking her questions she had never gotten before, but she also came up with one of her famous “truthbombs” LIVE, spurred by one of my questions about the relationship between boundaries and creativity. That was pretty awesome.

I was also asked to be the Priestess in Residence at a colleague’s super exclusive and high end mastermind. Again, I nerded out, because this was an honor, and rare invitation.  

I scheduled two short conversations with her to get as much info about her participants as possible. I spent several days pulling tarot cards, meditating, and preparing to receive the information that wanted to come through for them. I showed up and held space like a boss for the leader who hired me to do so while she led her retreat. And it ended up being a spectacular experience. I want to be the Priestess in Residence for someone’s mastermind retreat again this year.

Leaders get big opportunities and train for them like the Olympics. Plenty of people get lazy, ask the same questions as everyone else, or show up unprepared.  

Be the one who stands out and is remembered, because you nerded out, and gave it every bit of your presence and devotion.


Did these help? What were your lessons in 2017?

I’d love to know which one you resonated with the most in the comments below!


With love,