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One of my favorite words in the English language was introduced to me by my dear friend Angi Sullins. The word…mutuality – a reciprocity in dependence, motives, actions, words, respect. When relationships (either business or personal) are created from this wonderful island of shared experiences and beliefs the results are abundant and magical.

But just as hurricanes ravage coastlines and earthquakes topple buildings, storms can ravage the seemingly protected islands of mutuality too. Winds may thrust more heavily from one direction, knees weaken, trusted walls are challenged and fear and vulnerability roll into town. We raise our shields. We deflect what once freely filtered through. We question our every decision.

I haven’t mastered the art of discernment yet. I tend to enter every commitment full bore – a 100% passionate investment and it’s gotten me into some pretty frightening predicaments emotionally and financially. I’ve let my own desire for reciprocity in intellection, passion and spirituality often get in the way of seeing deeper truths. And when actions stop matching expectations the storm lies just along the horizon.

Today’s creation is to identify that in every experience or relationship where mutuality is challenged, conversation is crucial and self respect is critical. For every player, is the played. Yet when we love ourselves from the inside we find a mutuality of self respect, self awareness and self fulfillment.