Daring Spirit: Cheryl Murnane

When you open up to things, it is amazing what happens. Since we began featuring Daring Spirits each week over a year ago, we have had the pleasure of connecting to a lot of great people doing awesome things. This week is no exception! 

Cheryl Murnane lives in a suburb of Boston with her husband, two children, and dog, Mitzi. She works as a hair stylist/salon owner at Accents on Hair in Andover, MA. As a practitioner of yoga, she lives a disciplined life, balanced by faith and family, and she believes that everything happens for reasons we may not always understand. She is the author of two contemporary romance novels:  During the Fall and Steady as You Go.

Get your pencil ready as you may be inspired to put your thoughts on paper after hearing from Cheryl! 

Daring Spirits:  Tell us about a decision that felt really bold.

Cheryl: Having the courage to answer my soul's yearning desire to write a book was a bold decision for me. I always help to cheer friends on when they were trying something new in life, but I never allowed myself to answer what was calling me. One day I finally said enough is enough - just do it!

I love to write, but I didn’t have false ideas about my ability. I didn’t think I would write the next great American novel. I just wanted to write a great story about love and faith. Doing it for myself gave me the courage to try and not get hung up on the outcome. I wrote word by word until I felt the story was told to the best of my ability and left the rest in the hands of the spirits.

Daring Spirits:  Describe a time when things went "wrong" and then the Universe delivered.

Cheryl:  I never knew the connection between writing and the spiritual world until I started on my journey. When I write, I close out the world around me and go inside. It becomes quite meditative. When summer rolls around the kids are around and distractions pull at me, I fool myself to think that I’ll be able to finish a draft. Frustration sets in.

That happened while I was writing Steady as You Go. I had started writing in the early spring and was halfway finished when school let out for summer break. I didn’t pick up writing until October, and by then the wheels were rusty. I couldn’t find my way back into the story until one day when it appeared everything fell apart.

I work as a hair stylist as my main profession. It was a sunny Tuesday morning when one by one my clients cancelled their appointment due to sickness or over-scheduling themselves. At first I was upset – having to reschedule clients can be challenging because of availability on both sides. But, that morning the story was churning inside and with the day in front of me I wrote and wrote. Words bubbled out of me and characters began to emerge with more emotion and richness in their characteristics. Questions were answered and plots were solved. The part of my brain where ideas are formed overflowed and my fingers couldn’t keep up!

The ten days that followed were led by the Universe! I wrote more than 30,000 words and finished the first draft! Some may view it as mania, but to me it was pure energy guiding me. I woke early and wrote all day. My family allowed me the space to do it and the Universe took care of the salon – more clients cancelled as the week went on. It was honestly the most Universe-driven experience in my life. I couldn’t have stopped it if I wanted to!

Daring Spirits:  What’s one thing you really want people to know?  

Cheryl:  I have done a lot of soul searching in my life and this is my take away: life is about choices. Having the mindset that every choice is an experiment can lead to some pretty amazing opportunities.

Taking small experimental steps either in how you speak to someone or in trying something new can replace the fear or anxiety we have created within ourselves. Often times we create our own fear and have the ability to destroy it by changing one thing, which can help reset our thinking by experiencing a different outcome. Take a chance, be brave, and believe in yourself – if you don’t, who will?

Daring Spirits:  Beach or Mountains?

Cheryl:  My soul is at its happy place when my toes are in the sand and my breath aligns with the waves! Inhale, exhale. Waves roll out, waves roll in.

DS: Sweet or spicy?

CM: Ugh…sweet! It’s a problem…sugar is not good for us, but try to tell my taste buds that!

DS: Window or aisle?

CM: I favor the window – flying through the clouds and looking at the landscape below reminds me to make the most of my time here. Reality of how small I am in the vast universe is a great wake-up call to make the most of my time here on Earth. 

Daring Spirits: Thank you, Cheryl! Love the story of clients canceling, making room for you to write. What a gift that you recognized it. So often those little gifts pop in and we forget to see them as that - a gift of space for us to create! 

To connect with Cheryl and get your copy of her books, check out her website. Her books, During the Fall and Steady as You Go, are available in both paperback or e-book. You can also find her on Facebook

Psst! Are you a daring spirit, too? If so, we want to hear from you! Fill out the form here, and you may find yourself featured on the blog.

photo: Cheryl Murnane

This post originally appeared on December 21, 2016.