How I Found the Magic in My Life

what ifFour years ago,  in a room full of about 13 other women, I took a vow that would change my life forever.  In front of my teacher, and everyone else I committed to living life as a magical act for a year and a day.  At the time I wasn’t quite sure of what I was committing to, but a voice inside me said Yes! Do it!  So I did.

At the end of that year, I was in grad school, on my way to getting my degree in Chinese Medicine and starting my life’s work as a healer.   But something more profound than just finding my vocation had happened to me, and shortly after that year was over, I made a commitment to live my whole life as a magical act.

Here are just some of the things that has meant for me:

I came to fully accept that I was a magical being.

I was enrolled in a 4 year program in magical studies, but I always felt like and imposter and a fake.  I didn’t think I had any particular magical talents.  I didn’t feel like I was psychic, I had never been able to ‘see’ energy or auras. In fact, I was pretty sure that any minute someone was going to point a finger at me and tell me to get out of class. What I learned that year was that we are all magical beings.  We are all capable of developing psychic awarness, but more importantly, we all have gifts that no one else has, that is our magic.

I accepted that I was fully in charge of my destiny.

No more excuses or free tickets to pity-ville.  If I was going to live my life as if it were magic I had to accept that every thing happens for a reason.  Everything has a purpose. I also had to accept that I co-created my own reality with the universe.  If I felt like a victim or full of negativity, that is exactly what I was going to create in my life.  But if I stood in my own power and called to me that which I desired most, I was able to bring it into being.  What a scarey and awesome prospect.

I learned that I was here to do something amazing.

Up until that point I think my biggest life aspiration had been to avoid being eaten by what I saw as the soul killing machine of capitalism.  That meant living a life of flexible, but meaningless employment, always being broke and feeling like it was the fault of the system that I was unhappy.  But choosing to make this vow I came to realize that my gifts were needed. This is when I began to realize I was a healer, and invested time and  money into grad school so that I could open a full time practice.

I also learned to surrender to the fact that I had no idea what my true calling would look like.

In accepting that I was hear to do something special, the next step was realizing that my own attempts to shape that reality actually kept me bound by my own limitations.   When I learned to surrender to the Universe (which I think of as the goddess) I learned that life can be so much more wonderful than you could ever imagine.  When I look back on what I thought I wanted at the beginning of grad school, I can see now that it would have made me miserable.  So by surrendering and being open to the opportunities that life presented with me, I am so much happier.

I learned that when you are ready to do your work, the universe steps up to support you in a million ways.

Just one example.  Upon finishing grad school I had some vague ideas of how I wanted to practice.  Actually there was one practitioner whom I really looked up to, and if I was going to open a clinic, I really wanted it to be like her clinic.  After a couple of months of  practicing out of my house and looking for the perfects space, who calls me on the phone?  This very practitioner.  There was an opening at her clinic and did I want to join them?  Um Yes!  It made it possible for me to make a living strait out of school.  From there I built a thriving practice that not only paid me, but fed my soul in so many ways.  It was not uncommon for me to look around while at work and think “I can’t believe I GET to do this for a living!”

Of course making this decision hasn’t meant that things have always been easy, there have been a lot of hard life lessons to learn (more about that in a future post).  But I’ve felt ALIVE and CONNECTED in ways I never thought possible, and that has made all the difference.

In what ways has saying yes opened up magic in your life?  Leave a comment below.

Allison Carr LAc believes that healing yourself makes the world a better place.  Learn more about her work and classes at



Who should you tell about your spiritual beliefs?

Photo by- Marcus Ranum

Photo by- Marcus Ranum

It’s been a journey for me to be more and more ‘out’ about being a witch and a priestess.  Often I see people struggle with this question, “Who do I tell, and when?”

It makes sense why you might be reluctant to be open about your beliefs, especially if you identify as being ‘pagan’ a ‘witch’ in any way ‘woo-woo’.  We live in a culture where these beliefs are still considered evil, or devil worship by some, and just merely backwards or silly by others.  So I always feel like it is a personal choice how much you want to reveal, and your reasons for staying hidden about your beliefs are totally valid.

I want to share my experience however, in hopes that it will help some of you make the decision.

As a disclaimer I will tell you that I live in Portland, a town very welcoming and open to alternative beliefs and lifestyles.  We have our own TV show dedicated to our quirkiness (Thanks Carrie Brownstien and Fred Armisan).   I’m also a small business owner, and thus, I’m my own boss. I realize these things put me in a unique position to have the luxury to be a little more public about things than some of you.

However, time and time again, I am astounded at how much opportunity and goodness comes my way when I risk being open and honest about what I believe.  The more and more I do it in my business life the more I’m rewarded by getting to work with people who are attracted to my viewpoint, and share similar aspirations as me.  The more I do it in my personal life, the more rewarded I am by the openness and connection it creates in my community and family.  One of my favorite moments was getting to talk to my mom about animal allies after publishing this article.

So how do you make the decision?  I would answer these questions as honestly and openly as you can:

How much could you lose by being ‘out’?  For some of you the answer might be your job, your family members, community status.  These are serious considerations.  But for others of you it might just be some annoying friendships with people you would rather lose anyway.  Think about what you would be willing to let go of, if others react unfavorably, and also keep in mind, often other’s reactions are much more welcoming than we’d fear.

How much community support and buffer do you have?  I have a strong community of like-minded people, a family that is open, and a loving partner, who supports my spiritual practice.  All of this helps make any backlash I might get for my beliefs a mere annoyance rather than a devastating loss.  Who is around you that already knows about and supports your beliefs?  How much do they already help you stay strong in the face of adversity?  Are any of them harboring fears about you coming out that may make them less than supportive?

How willing are you to talk about something that is deeply personal and sometimes hard to articulate?  Like it or not, when we go public about our spiritual life, we open ourselves up to questions.  Some of them can be in an attempt to discredit us, but most are just out of honest curiosity and a desire to know more.  How comfortable are you talking about what you belive?  Do you have a language that is comfortable for you?  Are you ready to be questioned?

What are your reasons for being public?  This is perhaps the most important question for anyone to answer.  For me it was a matter of trying to be as authentic as possible in my daily life.  I also am guilty of being a recovering cynic, so it was important for me to fess up to my beliefs as a way to make peace with my past self.  I also feel that the more open and honest we can be about our belief, the less they will be stigmatized or misunderstood.  Your answers may not be the same as mine, and I really encourage you to think long and hard about this one, because sometimes it can make everything worth it, even if the answers to some of the above questions aren’t so favorable.

I hope made it clear that I don’t belive there is one right answer to the ultimate question of whether you do or don’t go public with your beliefs. Whatever your choice, I hope it ends up being as posative and life affirming as mine has been.

Have you grappled with this question? Leave a comment below and let us know what your decision was and why.


Allison Carr LAc believes that healing yourself makes the world a better place.  Learn more about her work and classes at