The Girl Effect: Sharing Seeds of Love

Hello. Welcome to the “Unfolding” is a pleasure to share energy with you here!

“When you stand up and speak your truth

–no matter when, where, or why–

a Goddess tattoos your name across her belly.” Sera Beak

(today then, She is adding *Joy*across her belly)

 Thank you for sharing a few moments of Truth with transparency and love..may this piece of my history, my truth..inspire you to create something beautiful and changeworthy with your own not only embrace change as you continue to create your story..but to be the change that transforms another’s story. 

Here is my Truth:  my base heart wound is set at “not enough”.  I share the cause of that in this piece: The Lost Girl ).  From infancy through adulthood, my story is riddled with tales of abandonment, physical and emotional abuse, chaos, and financial debt. 

Living from this base means that I will choose a love relation who either tends to withdraw or who criticizes or lashes out at me; I will choose connections who take far more than they give; I will choose to give you my food or my money even if it means I will be hungry or penniless; I will sacrifice my self in some way because even if it is extremely uncomfortable for me, it has been my norm.   

When I live from this base of not enough, if you tell me I am beautiful, worthy, my opinion matters, my work is inspiring, my smile sparkles, that I matter or make a difference in any way..I cannot hear you..and if I am able to hear you, I am unable to process your words.  If you tell me “I love you”, I do not know what that means because in  the space of “not enough” love cannot touch me. 

In this space of “not enough” I survive, but it is exhausting..a pain filled struggle; some choose to avoid the pain, some choose to numb the pain..I choose to live with the pain which then manifests itself into physical illness, limiting my movement in some way. 

“Not enough” strips me of internal worth, of value, of all that allows me to not just “fill space” but stand solidly and occupy that space.  I feel like the one weed in a garden of gorgeous blossoms, a weed just waiting to be identified, pulled, and discarded.

In “not enough”,  personal choices are discolored by feelings of hopelessness.  This was my story for most of my life. There came a point where I didn’t know “how” to rise above my external circumstances, so I no longer even wished to try.  And, my external circumstances were not as dire as that of some of the more than 600 million girls that live in the developing world..

A few sobering facts:

  • One girl in seven in developing countries marries before age 15.
  • Medical complications from pregnancy are the leading cause of death among girls ages 15-19 worldwide.  Compared with women ages 20 to 24, girls ages 10 to 14 are five times more likely to die from childbirth, and girls 15 to 19 are up to twice as likely, worldwide.
  • 75 percent of 15- to 24-year-olds living with HIV in Africa are female, up from 62 percent in 2001.
  • A survey in India found that girls who married before age 18 were twice as likely to report being beaten, slapped, or threatened by their husbands as were girls who married later.

Today, I’ve healed my heart wound and released my past. I release my story at the end of each day, as I embrace gratitude for the abundance and joy in my life.  I wake refreshed and ready to create a new story daily.  If you know me currently, you would find me to be a vibrant, enthusiastic, energetic woman who is passionate about peace; dedicated to sharing a message full of abundant love and joy; and occupies my space quite boldly.  I allow my space to contain “more than enough” so that I may share from this overflowing well of abundance.

I think you would agree, this is a huge what was the answer?

Love.  (Always).  At each stage in my life, I was given a chance by someone who took the time to accept me and to invest energy with me; teaching me a life skill or sharing with me a valuable resource that I could grow to move through “not enough”.  In the space of not enough, love is best shared as a seed that is planted; this precious seed blossoms with the nutrients of awareness and accountability. When we choose to be aware and accountable, we choose to allow all that we create to be life enriching and spirit enlivening; all that we invest in and share is for growth–our own, and those around us.  

We tend to try to “shower” a person with love…with whatever it is we think they “need”.  However, when we kindly hand a person a seed then take the time to show them how to plant it and nurture it, we are beginning the process of healing, of creating a personal garden.  When given a seed, I am responsible for the outcome: as I choose to care for and nurture this seed, I learn valuable skills on how to care for and nurture my self.  When I was given the tools to work with–and shown how to use those tools–I was able to learn to create a new story.  I was fortunate that in my experience, in each stage of my life there was someone perfectly placed to plant the seed of love..and there were many someone’s perfectly placed with the right tools and the instruction on how to use I quickly learned how to sow abundance and feel gratitude for it. 

Seeds of love (life skills to affirm one’s value, one’s ability to contribute, one’s presence in the world) can be in many different forms: education; monetary donations; life instruction.

When we take the time to hand a seed of love to a girl. then show her how to care for the soil and nurture the plant, we are empowering her to move through “not enough” to choices of more than plenty..of abundance.  When we invest in a girl, she will do the rest:

(Thank you to those who continue to invest in heart is full of love and gratitude and each creation is one of appreciation as I continue to pass those seeds along to the next girl!)

This essay is from my heart, my contribution to spread the word about The Girl Effect, a powerful idea: by investing in girls in the developing world, we make an incredibly effective investment in eradicating poverty, creating thriving communities, and slowing the spread of AIDS. 

To read other inspiring stories, or to add your own essay, please follow this link Tara Sophia Mohr: Girl Effect Posts.

Together, we can change the seed of love at a time.

Much peace and abundant love,



  1. #1 by Leslie on October 4, 2011 - 5:13 am

    You continually outshine yourself, Joy — in self-awareness, simplicity, and generosity of spirit. My life is enormously enriched by your presence in it.

    • #2 by unfoldingyourpathtojoy on October 10, 2011 - 6:08 pm

      Thank you, Leslie. I am on a path of I allow for the vulnerability of Truth, I am Aware of the Freedom of expression..and the bonds that freedom creates.
      My life is greatly enriched by *your* presence:)

  2. #3 by Rand on October 4, 2011 - 6:05 am

    …well looks like I bought some soccer uniforms for “Empowering Girls in Kibera”.

    Coaching a bunch of YMCA Youth Soccer teams was so much fun! I had an assistant coach from Argentina that was going to business school here so that when she went back home, her dream of creating a womens soccer league would become more than just a dream.

    I had no idea when you asked me what I wanted to *create* that I was talking to an angel…

    “Illumination, divinity, anchoring, blessings..a wonder filled potluck indeed! Thank you:)”

    Thank you, and all behind The Girl Effect. Thank you for affirming the importance of my obligation to *create* a future for my own two daughters.

    From my ‘Apples of Gold’ book that I bought from a young girl are these words:

    “Creation of woman from the rib of man:
    She was not made of his head to top him:
    nor out of his feet to be trampled upon
    by him: but out of his side to be equal
    with him: under his arm, to be protected:
    and near his heart to be beloved.”

    • #4 by unfoldingyourpathtojoy on October 10, 2011 - 6:18 pm

      Thank you for your support of the Girl Effect…and thank you for all that you share with your two they create their world, may the love you reflect to them be part of the strength of their foundation:)

  3. #5 by Roxanne on October 4, 2011 - 8:57 am

    Love — yes. That is always the start of an answer.

  4. #7 by winsomebella on October 4, 2011 - 7:17 pm

    Your contribution to a worthy cause is fabulous and an investment in future good.

    • #8 by unfoldingyourpathtojoy on October 10, 2011 - 6:23 pm

      Hi winsomebella,
      Thank *you* for your support:) As I share my truth, may others experience Freedom to share and create from their truth…

  5. #9 by Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord on October 5, 2011 - 1:30 am

    Loving you, beautiful girl, and valuing that we both get to share this planet together along with all the other wonderful women. WE ARE ENOUGH! (Just as we are.)
    x o x o

    PS – I am learning to become more comfortable with transparency, as well as living with less judgment. It feels really good.

    • #10 by unfoldingyourpathtojoy on October 10, 2011 - 6:26 pm

      Such a beauty filled affirmation: *We* are enough..individually and as we allow our “enoughness” to inspire a world wide connectedness…:)
      There is such freedom in transparency, as I release fear, I release struggle and am able to tap into flow quite fully..creating from such a space is a joy..

  6. #11 by Sandra Pawula on October 7, 2011 - 6:21 am

    Joy, I love when you share from your heart this way. It’s so exciting knowing that you have overcome your “not enough” story. May we share the seeds of love across the whole world.

    • #12 by unfoldingyourpathtojoy on October 10, 2011 - 6:27 pm

      Thank you! As we plant seeds of love, may they flourish within our own gardens and may we share from the bounty, the richness, the abundance of all that we choose to grow..

  7. #13 by Ellen Eassa on October 7, 2011 - 1:24 pm

    🙂 Peace and love to you–and many thanks for sharing yourself and showing others how to do the same.

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