four good things about pain

Pain is inevitable.

In the past, I constructed my life to avoid pain at all costs. Through distraction, chronic busyness, and various types of numbing I managed to successfully navigate away from pain, but in the process I ended up avoiding life.

I would try to predict the future and if there was a possibility of getting hurt I’d squirm away. Never letting true vulnerability settle in, I defaulted to what was safe, predictable, and familiar.

On my twenty-fifth birthday I had an awakening moment and I understood the truth — in trying to avoid pain, I allowed fear rule my life.

Even though I know better now, there are still times I try to interfere with the unfolding of life, especially if pain is possible.

These four points remind me to live, and love, fully even if pain is inevitable.


Your best work will often come from your most painful moments. Dance, write, sing, paint, photograph, spin, weave, craft. When you create from the darkness your creative expression is rich and dynamic.


When we express our pain we are more able to connect with others. In sharing our bumps, bruises, hurts and wounds we feel less alone. We all have a story and we have all been though pain; our experience of pain and what we decide to do with it is unique, interesting, and connective. Sharing our stories remind us of the truth, we are all in this together.


Illness reminds us to appreciate health. Blackouts help us to appreciate electricity. Drinking dirty water helps us to appreciate having clean water to drink. Once we have navigated through pain, we are more able to appreciate how good it feels to live and love once the pain has passed.


Your pain can open you into knowing who you are and how you want to live. My clients share stories of how their pain shaped their self-awareness, forced them to connect to their intuition, deepened their trust in themselves, developed their character, gave them the courage to make a change, opened them up to a new way of living, and blossomed their sense of resilience.

Gemma Stone LoveWhen we try to avoid the pain of life we become susceptible to depression, anxiety, fear, living on autopilot, and addiction {drugs, food, sex, shopping}.

The more you allow yourself to fully live, knowing pain is part of the gig, the more free you are to live a life you love.

Get your heart broken.
Make the call.
Take the risk.
Try anyway.
Fall down.
Be judged.
Start it.
End it.


What if the pain of your life ends up becoming the best part of the story?




Photo credit :: the ever talented Catherine Just.



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Posted on Oct 30, 2014 | Posted In: thoughts & musings

sometimes, we don’t get what we want

This is the final post about my crowd-funding experiment to raise money for the publication of my book The Art and Science of Designing A Life You Love.

In 30 days we raised $11,133 – from the bottom, middle and top of my heart. Thank you.

Asking for help is hard for me.

I was recently given a writing prompt, I feel vulnerable when…

I wrote … I ask for help.

Crowd-funding is all about asking for help. Sharing this campaign with you felt risky and vulnerable. I needed to settle into my fears — fear of failure, fear of being too vulnerable, fear of asking for help.

In the last ten years, I’ve been able to muscle through most of my goals independently and privately. Some dreams have come true and others have fallen flat because I was too afraid to ask for help.

Even though we didn’t reach $20,000 I feel really good.

I connected more deeply with my readers. I interviewed interesting people and made my sister cry {in a good way}. I moved through difficult writing moments and finished my manuscript by my deadline.

The campaign ends tomorrow.

If you’d like to pre-order the book, you can do so here.

If you’d like a copy of the book and 12 snail mail love letters from me, go here.

If you’d like the book and a one-hour life design consult with me, here you go.

If you’d like to come to the great life redesign retreat in April, this is for you.

I also wrote a pithy post about all the ways we can have a life design party, check this out.

Here are the life design interviews I shared during this campaign ::

Melsha Shea
Briana Waldeck
Kyra Bussanich
Tanya Geisler
Jen Louden

Life has given us each have a precious responsibility. To live as fully, freely, and deeply as we can. To move from survive to thrive, from fear to love, from false to true. To follow our hearts and listen to the whispers of our souls.

You are worthy of living a life you love. I hope this book helps you do just that.







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Posted on Oct 26, 2014 | Posted In: thoughts & musings

Let’s do it together

Gemma Stone happyI have a dream.

We do life design together.

Here’s how the dream unfolds.


I come to you — plane, train, automobile or horseback. I’ll find you.

You host a dinner party for up to twenty amazing people – your bestie, your co-worker, your mama, your barista. You choose.

Together, we spend a soulful evening engaging in the art and science of designing a life you love. It will be a night of connection, belonging, meaningful conversation, deep processes, love and laughter.

A few creative folks have played with this offering by asking …

… can I host this as a full day workshop? I’d like to charge a fee for the spots and make a little cash while supporting you.

… will you come out and facilitate a life design session as part of a retreat I’m already running?

… I want to hang out with you one-on-one. Can you fly to me so we can spend a day designing my life together?

The answer? An enthusiastic YES! 

Will I help with promotion? Yes.
Does the perk include all expenses? Yes.
Are you sure you’ll travel anywhere? Yes!

If this lights you up, send me a note {gemma@nullgemmastone.org} and we’ll have a conversation.

If you know you want it, you can head over to Indiegogo and snap up this perk. 

Let me know what your dream is and let’s make it happen.

life design & love,








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Posted on Oct 22, 2014 | Posted In: thoughts & musings

designing a life you love with Melsha Shea

Melsha Shea is a Life Designer.

A life well lived with no regrets is how Melsha lives her life. She has spent the last year intentionally diving into deep self-worth work, becoming a student of life, finding beauty in the simple things and engaging with her soul goals from a space of vulnerability and authenticity.

In this interview Melsha shares …
… the evolution of her summer on purpose
… how easy it is to find joy everywhere in all things all the time
… what living vibrantly authentic means to her
… how putting “let it be easy” into action can be freeing
… what Melsha let go of and how it changed her life
… managing expectations of you that aren’t in alignment with your soul

After Great Life Redesign 2013, one of Melsha’s soul goals was to live in vibrant wellness. In an effort to help others, she decided to document all the ups and downs of her journey, to living a Great Life, in a vulnerable and authentic blog. Check it out right over here.

There’s only one week left in the Indiegogo campaign to support my new book, The Art and Science of Living a Life You Love. There are plenty of fun perks you can only get through the campaign {a copy of the book with a love-note inscribed, $100 off the Great Life Redesign retreat and I’ll even fly to your place for dinner}.





designing a life you love with Bri Waldeck

Bri Waldeck is the creator of Precious Malas, my sweet sister and a Life Designer.

Note. In this interview we spill sister-love tears. And, there may be an f-bomb or two.
We also talk about …
… how Bri found her own path
… signs you might be on someone else’s path
… three things Bri would tell the lost version of herself
… the best parts of designing your great life
… how she found the courage to take the steps in the right direction
… one thing Bri would tell people who are just starting to design the life they love

I’m running an Indiegogo campaign for my new book, The Art and Science of Living a Life You Love. There are fun perks that you can only get through the campaign {a copy of the book with a love-note inscribed, $100 off the Great Life Redesign retreat and I’ll even fly to your place for dinner}.

Bonus! Everyone who buys a perk will be entered into a draw to win a Precious Mala. The winner will be announced on October 27.




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