*Are you happy at the moment?
I am very happy. I learned a long time ago that happiness is a choice. That you are completely responsible for your own happiness. This really frees you from needing outside circumstances and people in order to be happy. Being truly happy is an inside job and since I know it is my choice I am always happy.
*If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?
If I could go back to my 16-year old self I would say to her, Respect Yourself, You are worth it. My childhood was very unstable and traumatic and I never learned to respect who I was. As I became an adult I started to learn that all the choices I made were based off how I felt about myself. How you see yourself really determines the life you live.
*What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?
The most important thing I have learned this year is allowing things to happen in their time. Patience has always been a weakness for me. I am one of those people who doesn’t like to buy things online because of the shipping time. So this year one of the lessons I have been working on is allowing. Whenever I feel like I am getting ancy about things happening I remind myself of a plant in the garden, you must allow it to grow in time- standing over it shouting will not make any difference.
*What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?
In the next 12 months I hope to achieve many more speaking events to inspire and motivate others to live their lives hands-on. Instilling strength, confidence and courage into everyone I can reach. I will also have a new book out to go along with my five books already available. I am also working to launch a new program through my non-profit www.unitedhandsofchange.org to help those in need to strengthen their self esteem and motivate change.
*What’s your secret to happiness?
My secret to happiness is taking personal responsibility for my life. It is easy to play the victim and place blame for all the challenges you have faced in life. I take personal responsibility for my life in the present. I do not place blame on anyone in my childhood. I look back and know I am a stronger person. I am often asked if I could change my childhood, would I? I am quick to respond with a no. If I had to go through all of that to become the person I am today then it was worth it. Today I make choices for me and appreciate the lessons I learned from my past. I make sure that my choices count and treat myself with respect and honor – therefore encouraging the people in my life to do the same for themselves.
*What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?
The practice that keeps me grounded is sitting on the riverbank. Out house is on the river so whenever I am seeking some clarity or feel overwhelmed with life I take the time to sit and watch the water flow. It reminds me of the flow of life and even though there are twists and turns it continues to flow with ease. I love it!
*What’s your biggest regret?
I honestly do not have any regrets. Sure there are choices I look at and think what was I thinking. I am very grateful for my journey and all the ups and downs. The things I have faced have shaped me into the person I am today. For that reason alone I do not regret anything.
*What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?
The most important lesson I have taught my 5 girls is to respect themselves. To see themselves with respect and honor. That they are a big deal and how they treat themselves sets the bar for the way others will treat them as well. Instilling the strength and confidence within themselves so they walk with their head held high.
*What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?
The bad habit I would like to change about myself is impatience. Sometimes I find myself in such a hurry to get to the next spot I forget to enjoy the ride. I am currently working on this but it is still a lesson that needs lots of attention.
*Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?
I am most proud of being able to use my books and workshops to empower and motivate others. It is a humbling experience when someone contacts you because you have inspired them to take a hands on approach to their lives.
*When were you happiest?
Right Now. Happiness to me is state of mind, a personal choice. SO each moment I find myself happier than the moment before. Being alive is a privilege to me so I want to make sure I am living it as happy as possible.
*What ten words best describe you?
Kind, loving, compassionate, passionate, sharing, forgiving, motivated, determined, strong, authentic.
Robin Marvel is a multi-published author and speaker in the field of self development. Despite a childhood filled with abuse, homelessness and teen pregnancy Robin has overcome many challenges to make her life one of purpose, today she has devoted her life to show others how to do the same. Using her story, books and workshops as tools she is inspiring others to break cycles and choose to live the life they desire. You can find Robin on Facebook and at RobinMarvel.com.