June 4, 2015
Leaving the Gilded Cage:
New Inspirational Book Offers Dance-Changing Steps for the Tango of Life
Lyla Berg has never been afraid of taking a risk in life. No, let me rephrase that. She has learned how to overcome her fears—to leave her gilded cage—so she can benefit from the possibilities and successes that risk-taking can bring. Whether it’s getting married, getting divorced, raising a son, being a school principal, running for political office, traveling to foreign lands, or learning to dance Argentine tango, Lyla has learned to overcome her fears and self-doubts, embrace new opportunities, and find joy even in life’s most difficult moments.
How does she do it? First and foremost, she has learned to open her heart-soul connection. That is her secret for living life on her own terms. Early in Leaving the Gilded Cage, Lyla explains to us why she values the heart-soul connection so much:
“As the poet Rumi reminds us, ‘Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you’ve built against it.’ In The Tao of Love, Ivan Hoffman suggests that we will not find love, for ourselves or for others, by what we own or have done, but rather, by what we learn from what we have in our lives and what we have done. Opening your heart-soul connection will enable you to experience and express more love by helping you to disown whatever it is that keeps you enclosed in your gilded cage of perceived safety and familiarity.”
With this focus on the heart-soul connection, Lyla shows us how to leave behind the gilded cage, her metaphor for all the things that hold us back in life from behaviors learned in childhood to fears and the negative voices in our heads. She walks us through a series of chapters on such topics as “Embracing Relationship Fears,” “Committing to Being Happy,” “Handling Conflict Gracefully,” and “Rediscovering Your Creativity.” In each chapter, she shares personal stories of how she overcame difficulties in her life, offers inspiration and steps for others to conquer their own obstacles, and provides moments for reflection, positive affirmations, and finally, a tango metaphor.
Tango is at the heart of Leaving the Gilded Cage. Lyla decided late in life to learn how to dance Argentine tango, and it has become for her the perfect metaphor for the dance of life. Each chapter ends with what she calls a “Tango Gem,” which includes wisdom about the chapter’s topic translated into tango language. For example, in “Chapter 9: Demonstrating Confidence,” she states:
“Tango invites you to plunge into the depths of your being—to explore your spirit and feel passionate with the energy of simply being alive. The more you enjoy dancing tango, the more confident you will become; and your confidence will grow if you can learn something from every experience. As in life, it is important to your sense of self to maintain your integrity, both physically and emotionally. Be who you are, not how you think you should be. No matter how others may react, be bold and radiate your most beautiful, intriguing self.”
Throughout the book, Lyla reminds us that we are all in this dance of life together. We need to be respectful of others, not stepping on their toes, but not letting them step on ours either. No one can tango alone, so we need to be less selfish and more connected with others:
“The moment you change your thinking from a focus on ME, I, and MINE, to WE, US, and OUR, you open your heart-soul connection and begin to act from a place of ‘knowing’ that we are all connected on this journey called ‘life.’”
Knowing we are connected also means learning how to collaborate with others. If we want this world to be a happy place, we all need to get along, and getting along with others begins with getting along with ourselves—and success for one’s relationship with oneself lies in an open heart-soul connection. Lyla Berg is the perfect person to guide us through the steps necessary to open that connection so we can experience the dance of our lives.
For more information about Lyla Berg and Leaving the Gilded Cage, visit www.LeavingtheGildedCage.com.
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