Choosing To Share My Private Journey – A Transparent Update

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Social Media Privacy Privacy is a major concern for many people using social networks. Choosing how much of your personal life to spill into your work life through social networks is up to each individual.

In the context of how transparent to be on Facebook and Twitter, back in February 2008, I wrote about these three areas of life: personal, professional, and private. Today, for a specific reason, I am choosing to move the personal | private line:

When is it appropriate to share more?

For so many of us, our personal lives become inextricably linked with our professional lives. Who we are is our business, our business is us.

However, I always maintain we must still have a private life and choose only to share those things we are truly comfortable with: (1) being on the front page of the New York Times, (2) found in a Google search, and/or (3) proud for our children/grandchildren to see in years to come.

So, when is it appropriate to reveal more? …When your private life doesn’t feel completely congruent with your life in the public eye.

That’s where I’m at right now, and so this may be the most personally transparent blog post I’ve written to date.

I believe in authentic communication and I’ve recently undergone such massive transition in my personal life that it just doesn’t feel right not to share myself more openly with my community at large. One of the main reasons I’m inspired to write this post is to share with you my commitment to authentic, heart-centered relationships – on both a personal and professional level.

Over the past several months, I realize many of my network perceive I’m still living in a motor home traveling the country with my husband, Ty. I was. Up until about September of last year when we returned to Southern California after an 18-month tour of the entire western US and Canada.

My personal journey…

heart_girlTy and I met in 1999 not long after I came to San Diego from Scotland, and we married in 2001. We enjoyed many wonderful experiences together, most certainly our mobile lifestyle. But we discovered differences over the years in our outlooks, goals and aspirations. After we returned from our travels, we gave much thought to the future of our relationship.

As I continued to work on myself and grow personally, stepping more fully into my inner power, strength and light, my business success became greater and greater… and I began to see that Ty and I were simply traveling different paths.

Once it became clear our marriage no longer served either of us, Ty and I separated earlier this year and last month we divorced. We put effort into a responsible and caring separation, and we are amicable about the transition.

This has not been an easy choice for me, but it feels like a true choice for Freedom. Since I had experienced divorce with my parents as a young child, I was reluctant to travel that road again. Even though I’ve done a lot of personal and professional development on myself, I still had non-supportive beliefs and patterns impacting my choices.  I kept telling myself I was committed to a new standard of marriage. Now, I’ve realized I’m committed to a new standard of relating regardless of the form of the relationship.

Publishing personal changes on social network profiles

facebook_logo While I’ve been going through this transition over the past few months I kept wondering how I’d manage to change my relationship status on Facebook – and other social networking profiles – from married to single. (I did edit my privacy settings so the relationship change wouldn’t just suddenly go out in the News Feed of all my friends.)

Not only that, but I wondered how my network would respond to this news and, though I’ve shared with many close friends, I just wasn’t sure how to share en masse… or even if I needed to. But any time someone would tweet or write me through Facebook about my mobile lifestyle or husband, I didn’t know how to respond. So, that’s why I’ve chosen to write this post.

Given the very nature of social media and the times we are in right now, I just know it’s more in alignment with my truth and integrity to share this part of my journey with you now.

Resources that made a huge difference

I’m deeply grateful to many spiritual teachers whose work helped immensely to deepen my relationship with myself and bring out the higher meaning in my transition.

Ty and I were fortunate to have the support of Peaceful Divorce Expert, Belinda Rachman. She’s an exceptional mediator who specializes in “divorce-in-a-day,” based in Carlsbad, California.

There are also a few books that I’ve found most helpful not only in my marital transition but in embracing my success at a whole new level:

  • The Big Leap – by Gay Hendricks. Incredible book about how we all have an “upper limit” of success, happiness, joy, love, finances and unconsciously sabotage ourselves when we reach that limit until we know how to breakthrough.
  • The Secret Code of Success – by Noah St. John. Excellent book that shows how our fear of success is greater than our fear of failure and teaches specific steps on how to overcome this challenge. Great companion to The Big Leap!
  • Spiritual Divorce Debbie Ford. A book I bought years ago but was afraid to read. 😉 If you know anyone contemplating divorce, this is a superb book.
  • How Do I Tell The KidsRosalind Sedacca. A beautiful storybook for couples with children; Roz’s book touched me deeply as an adult child of divorce, even though I don’t have children myself.

Letting our light shine!

Rapeseed field at springI’ve always resonated with these beautiful, inspiring words by Marianne Williamson from her book A Return To Love, and they have helped me greatly most recently to really let my light shine:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
that most frightens us.

We ask ourselves,
Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.

Your playing small
does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine,
as children do.
We were born to make manifest
the glory of God that is within us.

It’s not just in some of us;
it’s in everyone.

And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.”

Another gem from Marianne (I saw go by on Twitter recently): “Every change is a challenge to become who we really are.”

How has this impacted you?

woman_freedom My hope for you in reading this post is to feel inspired to live into YOUR deepest truth more fully. To know how powerful beyond measure you are and to step up and play a bigger game in life and business. The world needs you!

I’d love to hear your thoughts – please share how this post impacted you in the comments below.

Mari Smith

Forbes Top Social Media Power Influencer | Facebook Marketing Expert | Globe-trotting Speaker, Author | 'Mari like Ferrari' | Bubbly Scottish-Canadian!

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  • Linda


    I also have been through the pain of divorce, and I can only imagine what it must be like for a person in your position to have felt compelled to share such a private and painful part of your life’s journey.

    I am most inspired by the last part of your post..and I quote “…feel inspired to live into YOUR deepest truth more fully. To know how powerful beyond measure you are and to step up and play a bigger game in life and business. The world needs you!”

    You are so authentic and giving in all that you do in sharing yourself with the world.

    I don’t even know you, but I respect you beyond measure, and I wish you all the best!


  • What a heat-warming post. Though one could see it as sad, I don’t see it that way. You’re becoming more of the woman you were meant to be and I love how you say you are “stepping more fully into my inner power, strength and light”…that is beautiful!

    And the words of Marianne Williamson I’ve read before, but really touched me reading it again tonight. Especially that first verse:

    “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
    Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
    It is our light, not our darkness
    that most frightens us.”

    Makes me think I’m often afraid…not that I’m not good enough, but that my light could shine so brightly I’d get a sunburn. But I don’t need to worry about a sunburn….my light will shine just enough on so many others just enough to let them shine….and my light will inspire & transpire them to live a better and more fulfilling life. THAT is what I need to remember.

    That, and your entire post, has made me think more about who *I* really want to be, and what is my inner power, strength and light. For that, I thank you 🙂

  • Mari Smith

    I am so deeply grateful for your kind comments. My heart is very full knowing how much love and support I have in my community. It took me many weeks to build up the courage to get this post “just right.” It was important to me to share as an inspiration to others, and not at all from victim or blame. I’m not that kind of person anyway, but sometimes underlying negative feelings can leak through in communication. I actually had five close personal friends read my draft and provide feedback before feeling ready to publish!!

    I’m heartened by the comments on Twitter and Facebook too.

    Thank you for being YOU!!: )

  • Hi Mari,
    Take heart – sounds like you’ve made great decisions with grace, style, and compassion. Only good can come from this situation, as Louise Hay says!

    Marriage is meant for happiness and mutual growth – if it’s no longer good for you, then moving on is definitely in both partners’ best interest. Letting go allows you both to move on and find love, fulfillment and happiness again.
    Thanks for you leadership, once again!

    If you’re looking for guidance on where to go next, I can recommend Jannine Oberg at She uses astrology, EFT, IMAGO, mediation and counseling skills in addition to her natural gift as an intuitive and healer to help guide couples and individuals with life’s transitions, uncovering hidden resources and influences you may not have known existed before. There are new opportunities for all of us in these times!

    Thanks for sharing your personal journey – I’m sure many people will find guidance here!

  • Mari, you are so special to entrust your friends, colleagues and followers with your deepest truths. We all already know you as a model and inspiration. There’s no shame in acknowledging your path as separate from Ty’s and that because of your choices, you both can now be free to be who you’ve been meant to be all along. I believe you two were together to bring out the best in one another, and now may you both continue to shine in your true unique ways. Blessings to you both.

  • Wow Mari,

    Thank you for sharing and because I have met you both I initially felt sad, I suppose I had imagined that Des and I would meet up with both you and Ty again when we again ventured to USA. I wish you both peace and joy. I now understand more fully a comment you left for me on twitter this week.

    I love what you have shared here:

    “My hope for you in reading this post is to feel inspired to live into YOUR deepest truth more fully. To know how powerful beyond measure you are and to step up and play a bigger game in life and business. The world needs you!”

    You so inspire me to step up and play that bigger game, yes the world does need me, as it does you and all that you be.

    In Love and light


  • Hey Mari,
    Class and grace go a long way in this world. I appreciate you relaying the story because it humanizes this thing we call social media.

    To new doors opening.


  • Gina Parris

    Oh Mari,
    God bless you through this time. The end of a marriage is always a heartbreaking thing to me, but your post will manage to bring grace to a lot of people who know that they are in an impossible union. Thanks for sharing how to be authentic in the uncomfortable times.

  • Authentic Change Coach, Iyabo Asani

    Mari, thank you for sharing this.

    I came into this Internet world less than two years ago and I find that many marketers put their best foot forward and want us to believe all kinds of wonderful things about them which are probably all true. However, there is a ying to every yang and I find it hard to know people when you only see one side of them whether they are online or not.

    Thank you for this. I appreciate you.

    Holding you in a space of love and serenity.


    Iyabo Asani

  • Mari – This was very deeply moving to read, especially because you wrote it out of your desire to step into more of who you really are as an authentic being. You are so inspiring! I notice that I am making different decisions in my life (seemingly small ones at the time, but not really) as I really see myself as a “brandividual” (a term I learned from you) and know that everything I do in my life is transparent. I wish you all the best in your new life you have stepped into.

  • Thanks for sharing, Mari. I probably share too much personal stuff on Twitter and FB, but I’m careful to keep it not TOO personal. However, I’ve also had some experiences this year that I consider putting out there, because I think I could help people by sharing. Still not certain, though, because I do worry about how clients or potential clients would perceive this.

    Thanks for being so open and I’ll be thinking about how I can share my experiences, too.

  • Mari-
    I so admire you for posting this. I remember our conversation a while back and have kept your split to myself, wondering how you’d handle announcing it publicly. And you did so in such a beautiful and authentic way. Very classy and full of integrity.

    By sharing this story and also the resources you used to make this part of the growth path for you and Ty, you remind us of your expertise in relationships. Thanks for doing this.

    Blessings to you both,


  • Dear Mari,

    I so honor you for sharing your journey so authentically with us. I acknowledge you and Ty for making that choice to see the ending of your relationship as the possibility of a new and powerful chapter for you both. When my marriage was seriously floundering almost 10 years ago and we were working to salvage it, there was a period of almost 2 years where only our therapists, and 2-3 trusted friends knew the true state of our relationship. It was excruciating because I felt I couldn’t truly be myself around those I loved the most. Yet I knew I needed that time to get to clarity about the state of our relationship. As I’m sure you now know, often everyone will have a different view on what you “should” do when divorce is on the horizon which is typically based on what personal fears and issues get triggered for them. Particularly when children are involved, the need to do your own emotional homework is absolutely critical.

    I often say to my clients and students as I support them to thrive after divorce, that I consider my divorce the greatest gift of my life. I wouldn’t have become the woman I am today without it. Your honest and powerful post will help to shift the perspective society holds around divorce. Yes, it’s absolutely painful, but there are great gifts and enormous wisdom we can find from divorce, if we are willing to look. Not only are you willing to look, Mari, but you’re willing to share – that is so powerful, so thank you!

    Blessing and gratitude to you,
    Carolyn Ellis

  • Hi Mari – I posted a comment above. Thanks for posting. It doesn’t lead to my correct twitter address. It should be

    Thanks. Again, many thanks for sharing the depth of your personal journey.


  • Stephanie Bell the Spirit Coach

    Well Mari — you know this post hits home with me personally also, since just a few days I finally moved into my new home — as a single woman. While Chris and I are aren’t officially divorced yet, that is merely a function of paperwork, and now we are truly living separate lives after 14 years together.

    We too were able to do it quite amicably, although there have been “moments” especially recently. I am grateful for your resources, I find myself quite emotional — more so than I expected and needing more support than I (the “SpiritCoach”) imagined I would! : )

    Thank you Mari for being your authentic self and sharing with us all! : )

    I send you lots of love and blessings and know you will continue to grow in a most beautiful way, personally AND professionally! : )

    God Bless You Mari!


  • Mari,

    May your innate wisdom be strong enough to protect your inner peace during this turn of events.



  • Only someone with great strength can take what is an intensely personal crisis like this, and turn it into not just a ‘learning experience’ about using social media effectively and with authenticity, but also share some awesome resources and insights that will aid others facing similar problems in their own lives.

    Mari, my heart simultaneously aches and sings for you. You are losing something precious, but growing into something fantastic at the same time.

    My hopes and prayers will be that the transition is painless and trouble-free, and will take you closer to a place where you really want to go.

    If there is anything I can do to help, please ask.

    All success

  • Mari – Thank you so much for sharing your story with all of us and opening up your heart. I know it can’t be easy. I applaud you for staying true to yourself and your power. I met you for the first time at Ali’s OSBW and was so impressed at your amazing genuine caring heart and desire to see others succeed, that I know your are going to continue to truly shine and set a fantastic example for all of us in transparency, engagement ad interaction, and community building. Much love and success, Jen Bourn

  • Dearest Mari,

    I can only imagine how you had to work up the courage to publish this post and I’m so grateful that you did. The flood of love and support you’ve received already is a beautiful thing to witness. As Dr Mani said above my heart both aches and sings for you. Sending you a big virtual hug and wishing you and Ty much joy and peace.

    Gina xo

  • Mari,

    I appreciate your openness and the difficult decision you had to make between what’s “personal” and what’s “private” (thanks for the clear distinction, too).

    There are so many layers to making a decision like this and it sounds like you spend much time in making a considered, thoughtful decision…and making it a “teaching moment” as well.

    Blessings to you,

  • Kamila Harkavy

    Hi Mari,

    I agree that transparency takes courage and is part of playing a bigger game; it’s also one of the ways that we manifest leadership. By being transparent, that truthfulness and realness inspires others to be more truthful and real and to share themselves authentically. This leads to a greater sense of our own humanity and connectedness.

    I, too, have wrestled with the issue of how much to reveal. I’m thankful that I struck a good balance between transparency and TMI (too much information) especially when my ex-husband’s attorney brought the results of her web search on me into a courtroom- I had nothing to fear and was not embarrassed. Readers of my blog and visitors to my website comment most often on their appreciation and thankfulness for my transparency as it supports them to be transparent with themselves- a necessary first step.

    Although it may not be our primary motivation, being transparent also supports one’s marketing as it gives others the opportunity to really know us and what we believe; and to then choose to do business with us as a result.


  • Dear Mari,

    I am so sorry and wish you and Ty the best as you begin new journeys. Thank you for choosing to share your deeply personal transition with your readers. I wish you joy, peace, delightful growth and all that will continue to bathe your life in meaning and happiness.

    With my warmest wishes,


  • Remember how when we had the good fortune to run into you recently in San Diego, I didn’t recognize you because your energy was so different? You were so vulnerable and connected to your truth — it was a gift to spend a bit of time with you.

    Your sharing of your journey is a breath of fresh air! Women already struggle w/ “super woman” syndrome. As we become more successful the pressure to appear as if everything is perfect can be intense. Thank you for your tremendous courage to not only live authentically but to share those authentic decisions publicly in a graceful, honoring way. Much love and blessings to you and to Ty as you travel your new paths! xoxoxox Kendall

  • Hi Mari,

    My heart goes out to you and Ty. I appreciate your honesty and vulnerability. Living in the secret place of holding your personal life separate from all of your followers is over and that will empower your next steps.

    So glad to have met you and Ty and hope for you what is true for me and that is that both my ex hubby and I are living happy and fulfilled lives apart from one another and everything is at last, all good.

    E hugs to you!
    You are a classy lady!

  • Thanks for sharing your personal life. You are courageous for baring your soul. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I wish the very best for you.

  • Thanks so much for sharing yourself so authentically. I applaud the courage it took to do this. In my mind, this makes social media more appealing. If we all put up the front that we have it all together, then we are setting the bar to be unattainable for others.

    People want to do business with real people – people who are successful but yet who we can relate to.

    It takes a lot of courage to be vulnerable — thanks for modeling vulnerability and strength in such a beautiful way for us all.

    Stacey Mayo

  • Hi Mari,

    Thanks so much for sharing this information. I know it wasn’t an easy decision. I went through a divorce myself it was very unpleasant. But it was for the best.

    I’m glad I did have the pleasure of meeting both you and Ty.

    I appreciate you sharing your book list. I see a couple I need to get for myself.

    You and Ty are in my prayers and thoughts as you both embark on your new journeys.

  • Lisa Ladrido

    What a beautiful post Mari. I am sorry to hear, because I know divorce is a difficult decision and one that is not made lightly. Whether you were to share it to the world or keep it to yourself is purely a personal choice. I can’t imagine anyone judging you either way.

    However, when you open up to the world, to your online friends, the real Mari, the person behind the beautiful happy face on your website, Mari, the person, your heart, is shared with all. I think the more we share with others, the sooner we can heal from the pain and start to live again. It is a much healthier place to be.

    Take care Mari and thank you for sharing you.


  • Coach Deb

    Aloha Mari,

    Here’s to your courage & shining your light – even on your darkest days, when the tunnel seems so dark and long.

    In honor of your journey, here’s a video I did with a client in Temecula, CA that brings Marianne Williamson’s inspiring words to life in a unique way.

    May it inspire you to the deepest part of your soul and motivate you to really let your light shine…

  • Mari, your courage and grace in expressing the private side of your life really touched me and deepened my understanding of authentic power. Your ability to articulate your personal situation so that you also “inspire people to live their deepest truth” took me years to discover and model as a professional speaker and published author — and I still wrestle with more than I care to admit.

    Self-disclosure in a public space, from what I’ve learned, is most powerful and transformative when it moves beyond catharsis, whining, or blaming to an authentically personal and equally universal insight (often shared in and because of hindsight) that all can apply for the betterment of their own lives. You did that beautifully and eloquently. Thank you. Encore! Encore!

  • Mary Cate


    I feel the need to honor the sadness I feel — anytime a committed relationship ends — but in particular when it happens to a couple I’ve held as an example my own vision of living a true adventure together. It sounds like you both were equally committed to a mature approach and mutually supportive transition. Life is poignant, no avoiding it. I wish you both the best. Odd how escaping in a motor home led to Facebook and being more socially connected than seems humanly possible. An amazing life is in store.

  • Oh, Mari — what a graceful and perfect way to share this. I struggle all the time with how much to share, and know firsthand about the divorce experience. At times I have not handled it with the tact and honesty that you have demonstrated here. Thank you for being a light and inspiration to us all. May you continue to grow by leaps and bounds, always seeking deeper truth. Welcome to the next and glorious chapter of your life. Love and light to you.

  • Congratulations, Mari, on taking the higher road and simply telling the truth.

    Change itself is seldom simple, yet recognizing when to move on is key to creating the authentic life. As painful as endings may be, there is release and relief in acknowledging the truth of “what is”. You and Ty will both be better for letting go of what no longer serves or sustains you.

    I wish you peace as you discover all the wonderful, unsettling, exhilarating, joyous, confusing, and satisfying new things your journey brings.

  • Mari, I have always been impressed (from the get go) with the open, caring, genuine presence you have cultivated online. Even though I have not met you in person yet, I get who you are – someone who walks her talk. I see your friendliness extended to anyone who reaches out to you whether they are a “name” or not. It was such fun for me to find you a fellow Canadian (fellow Beautiful BC-er even!) and to swap some messages with you early on when I first hit Facebook and Twitter. Your generosity in sharing your knowledge about social media, in general and in particular, has steered me in the right direction more than once, and I thank you.

    Divorce has hit so many of us, and some multiple times, whether as a child or an adult. And some of us have let our own losses add to our compassion in walking alongside those in the throes of it. Even though it is a private journey, it does become public knowledge when you stop wearing that wedding ring and no longer are seen with your former spouse or partner. Your sharing of your own change of status in this online community has taken courage and you’ve given it due process – you have done this tastefully and without blame.

    I did miss you awhile back when you said you were going (how did you say) underground or offline, and wondered how it was going for you. Now I’m glad to see you’re back in full force!

  • Mari, you are a wonderful example of practicing what you preach! Thank you for your continued inspiration to share openly and honestly with internet networks. I agree that it’s important and even though it’s not the easiest thing to do all the time, I greatly admire the way you do it anyway! Congratulations on your decision to move yourself forward. I look forward to hearing more about where you land and your continued (amazing) success.

  • Julia Mattern


    Thank you for sharing your story and the list of helpful resources with all of us. what a wonderful example of turning a personal situation into a powerful learning experience.

    I am always amazed by how we spend so much of our lives keeping huge parts of our journeys secret and in so doing, miss the opportunity to truly connect with others on a deep level. This year, I have witnessed several successful, powerful people share their darkest moments and I have always come away with love, admiration and a greater sense of connection–I now add you to that list.

    Having spent a wonderful weekend with you and Ty, I know you are both special people. I admire the courage and grace with which you ended your relationship and your beautiful sharing of that story.

    Sending you love and peace on your new journey,
    Julia Mattern

  • Ali R. Rodriguez

    Your transparency touches my passionate soul. I’m in appreciation of your humbleness, clarity, authentic power and integrity to stay true to the woman of substance you are.

    This is a huge lesson you’re sharing with us and we are so lucky to be the recipients of your wisdom, valor, courage and personal growth journey, even if painful. The resources are also amazing. It is through transparency and authenticity in Social Media, that you continue to build a successful tribe so that together, we continue to move forward to fulfill our intended purpose on this earth.

    You have done this with grace, class and above all “honor”, to yourself, to your committments, to your future, and to the rest of us who care. That’s how you are letting your light shine! …and may it always shine bright, no matter what!



  • Hawaiians call it “koa” – courage. It takes tremendous courage to walk the path you are called to walk. And it takes “ikaika” – strength, to make the choices you’ve made to walk that path. I wish you warmest aloha as you continue your journey. Mahalo for taking us along with you as your companions and friends, and for trusting us with your most personal struggles and joys.

    I look so forward to meeting you in person in Rancho Bernardo next month.

    You are amazing!

  • Terri Zwierzynski


    As I read your post and the comments that followed, what kept coming up for me is how much social networking, particular in a business context, is highly biased toward sharing positive news and thoughts. Sometimes following folks in Twitter, I think “these people can’t possibly be this happy all the time!” And like a lemming, I swim along with the positive tide, never sure when it is really OK to say I’m not having a great day, something bad happened or I am just feeling down.

    On the other hand, on the few occasions when I have shared these not-so-great things in my life — I have found my social network to be unfailingly supportive, sincere in their understanding and sharing of uplifting thoughts. But then there is always a hesitation before sharing again…amd I just looking for sympathy? Or am I being authentic?

    Maybe it’s just me? But I don’t think so…

    Terri Z

  • Dear Mari Braveheart, You touched on universal truths even as personal as your message was and that nakedness is so nourishing. Every glimpse of honesty nudges further truth sharing that helps us all.

    Since my divorce there’s been so much growth – not easy but great discoveries that enhance my life daily. The honesty stretches into generations as well – my son now has a better chance of knowing what a committed relationship can really be and how women have so many gifts to offer in the home and out. So, thank you for helping me see that and know that all is proceeding as it should. I send a heart full of light and sisterhood. With a ‘rolling namaste’, Love, Elaine, the Drivetime Yogagal.

  • Mari,

    Your post is heartfelt and courageous. (Courage comes from the French word couer which is heart)

    Sharing your personal journey serves to bond to your friends both in-person and virtual. I have had the pleasure of meeting you in person and know you to be a stellar gal.

    It is not just the personal stories we share on Twitter, Facebook and other social media that can get an emotional charge. Sometime stating “what’s on your mind” can get you in legal trouble like this tweet story –

    Yes, there is a difference between personal, private, and pubic. I describe love linguistics to encompass the words of love, body language, and emotional and social intellisense. It is the “social intellisense” that needs to be turn on high and activated with diplomacy, decorum, and decency. Following “Platinum Rule of Life” is always the way to go: Treat others the way they want to be treated.

    Have fun at the Tweet-up on Wednesday.

    Peace and Lovematism,
    Sherrie Rose
    The Love Linguist

  • Makena Hayes-Gargonnu

    Greetings Mari!

    Thank you for sharing. Opening up to the world can be very difficult for us sometimes. I’m glad that you and your husband found a peaceful way to transition into your new lives.

  • Mari,

    Since I first started following you on Twitter I’ve always thought of you as a “classy lady”. The manner and style in which you’ve shared this personal information proves that I’ve been right all along.

    Wishing you the best.



  • Tracey Hausel


    I am deeply honored that you would so publicly share your journey with us. You are such a caring person that I know this may have been difficult for you.

    I agree with you stance on privacy. One must be authentic to themselves and others. Bravo to you!

  • Mari…Thank you for so courageously and eloquently sharing your personal journey. It’s inspirational to know how you live your truth, even when it’s extremely difficult to do so. Simply the best to you and Ty,

  • Dearest Mari,
    Thank you for those post. You’ve been such a pioneer AND guide around this bold new frontier for social networking. It has certainly helped me navigate my way regarding how much to reveal and how much not to.

    I too am “all about relationships” – always have been. And believe in serving people from a place of authenticity. After all, I only work with people I know like and trust, why wouldn’t it be the same for others.

    I recently had to make a similar choice. My life was consumed for 4 years caring for my mother who was battling cancer. She died this past May.

    I had to find a way to talk about it within my communities because it just didn’t feel right to be writing posts and article all designed to be inspiration, uplifting and empowering, when I was having to manage great personal stress and challenge.

    I may have lost a few people from my list, but the love support and I believe professional respect I gained was incredible.

    I think anyone who opted out, were simply not in alignment with my professional orientation anyway.

    I guess when integrity is a personal and professional value and standard. When you embrace internet marketing and social media as part of your promotional effort, some level of intimacy and transparency is necessary.

    Your guidelines have been very helpful in my ability to find my own personal boundaries in the ever flowing dance of all this.

    Blessings on your journey,

  • Dear Mari,

    Having walked a similar path, I relate all too well to what you’ve shared with us. I especially loved how you summed up your response to this significant change in one’s life, that is, “I’m committed to a new standard of relating regardless of the form of the relationship.”

    I know you will succeed in making the transition and I wish you much comfort in setting up your new home. Putting my energy into that helped me tremendously when my husband and I parted ways. I loved the home I created for the children and myself very much and am grateful for having been able to raise them there for almost 5 years.

    Sadly, a joint venture with a dishonest business partner has since cost me that home and my life with the children (both very painful personal losses), but not my belief in the value of integrity or the importance of the work I’m doing with others.

    As I explained to my son and daughter as we dismantled our lives, in life it’s not how hard we get hit, it’s how hard we can get hit and still keep moving forward! I know you’ll keep moving forward, Mari. And I’m right there with you all the way.

    Thanks again for your openness. Wishing you all the best.

    Linda M. Lopeke
    The SMARTSTART Coach

  • Dear Mari,

    I’ve been an entrepreneur for 21 years and a coach for 8, and I’ve been through divorce in my 20’s, serious financial woes, the passing of my husband of husband of 27 years from cancer, handling now being a single mom and more, and I’ve shared much of this with my online community. Why? Because people need to understand that success in business does not mean we have a perfect life and that life’s challenges touch everyone. It’s beautiful to see that you stepped into your greatness by sharing an authentic experience of growth and change that will only make you seem more real to all your social media friends, clients and followers. And it’s inspiring to see that you handled your divorce in such a dignified way.

    May you blossom in your new freedom,

    Janis Pettit
    Small Business, Big Results

  • Clare

    Wow, Mari! You are very courageous to post YOUR truth out here! As a mom who is divorced and re-married, and someone who had a very public life when I divorced, I know exactly what you have been grappling with. I still have many experiences tied up inside me that I know would help thousands of others, but I am not yet ready to share. perhaps when I am more established online, then I may well do so or better still, write a book about it because there is certainly enough content!
    Sharing deep, inner experiences is what draws us together and makes us the spiritual beings that GOD intended.
    Bless you and Ty on your new journeys. I hope to meet you in person very, very soon and give you a BIG HUG! You deserve every success that comes your way!
    P S I know what you mean about not being a victim, and your writings prove that!

  • Sheila Martin

    Oh, Mari.

    Brave wee lass.

    My heart goes out to you now…

  • Mari – I’m touched by this “announcement” of your divorce but not surprised that you would share it in this public forum – the place where you have created a community of friends – whether you knew it before or not.

    There’s never been a bright line between business and professional relationships. They ebb and flow as needed in our lives. You have taught so many of us how to build “business” relationships through social media. Yet I have seen how Twitter and Facebook really just confirms that old saying that we do business with people we “know, like and trust”. Always have, always will.

    This news about your divorce saddens me because I know firsthand how difficult it is to transition out of a marriage. But I join everyone here in celebrating how you’ve discovered and embraced your authenticity. It’s the biggest gift a woman can give herself!

    I’d like to share a simple, but profound quote by Mashide that helped me understand why I needed to move aside things I once thought were important in order to get to the real me:

    “Barn’s burnt down…now I can see the moon.”

    Enjoy the view, Mari:-)


  • Hi Mari,

    Iam happy for you making this decision for “freedom.” We haven’t talked for a long time, but I’m with you, and love Marianne’s famous quotes on the fear of our power.

    Hope to connect with you in San Diego,

    Judy Cullins

  • Toolie


    Thanks for the transparency and truthfulness you regularly share. Making the decision to part is tough no matter how it happens — been there! I’m glad that you’ve found emotional and spiritual support, and hope that your new-found freedom will feed your spirit and your dreams. Well done! You’re in my prayers.

  • SRivera

    Thanks for sharing your life experiences. I wish you the best!
    God Bless you!

  • Elle How

    Hi Mari:

    I am so very proud of you… you are very graceful and when you share yourself like this you give courage and strength to all of us to really live more authentic lives. I am ending a relationship that began many years ago and while I have struggled with the thought of removing myself from it.. I have come to the realization that I am only preventing myself and others from moving onto their proper paths. Your post came at a most opportune time… it is confirmation that I am making the right moves to live my life more authentically as well.

    Thank you and I wish both of you all the very best…

    Elle How

  • Hi Mari ~

    When someone has the courage to be human, to expose their real world, it gives everyone permission to do the same and reminds all of us how important it is for us to live authentically.

    Marriage is a journey and for many of us, not an easy one. It constantly ebbs and flows. It also reminds us how different men and women are in the way they see the world and process their isssues.

    I’m sure like most of who only know you through Twitter of FB, I assumed you had a strong, loving union with Ty and in fact had found your perfect partner. As with the rest of us, there is that part of us that the world sees, and then there’s the part they don’t.

    You’ve shown respect for both you and Ty and for what you had together through this post. Everthing in life has a beginning and an end and some things are just meant to end sooner than others.

    Thank you for your honesty.

    Warmest regards to you Mari,


  • Birgitte Melnick

    Dear Mari, What wonderful courage and determination you have in sharing your life with the readers of your blog. I, for one, send you special thoughts and strength all the way from Denmark, where I am vacationing during the summer. Each occurrence in our life is another chapter and only shows us how strong and resilient we are. Hope to see you soon… Gitte

  • Andrea Tannouri

    Hey Beautiful Lady,

    Great job on your post Mari. You struck the right balance and it was both instructional and personal, I commend you for your transparency and your bravery. Keep your light shining bright! =) Andrea aka @HolisticMom =)

  • Mari,
    I like to congratulate that you following your truth.
    And came out to public to share with us. Since there is no accident that you turned to one of the most public figure these days. You have inspired touched many woman.
    Even though you have sadness I could tell your loving and caring energy coming out from your story. I am very proud of you.
    I will miss seeing you and Ty together at party.And looking forward to meet your new man.
    Best wishes to you and Ty’s new life !

  • Mari,
    Your incredible journey and being so open and sharing about it is what makes you a great person and leader! Most people think that those who have great success always live in a perfect world – it’s those that share their struggles along with their triumphs that truly helps and inspires others.

    Thanks for The Big Leap book, read it on the plane ride home from San Diego. It’s helped my marriage and helped bring closure to a business partnership that needed to end.

    Success is a Journey, Not a Destination!

  • Mari,

    You show me in many ways how to interact with my social network and customers. We hear so many divorce stories, most of which present with a conflicted and ugly tone. Yours is clearly a higher vibration recognition that lives do veer apart, that unions that no longer support both, should be blessed and gone their separate ways, wishing both parts the best in their further journeys.

    Thanks for teaching, whatever you do. I have followed you for a while and think you are tops.


  • Rose Kirkland

    I really admire your authenticity and honesty about your situation. I have also been there and I remember going through such embarrassment and humiliation about a divorce that I was going through that I did not want… Neither did he! But, you know what happens when the wounded inner child comes up and that little boy wants to “suck his thumb” and be stubborn…. So, it happenend, but has worked out for good.

    Mari, your situation is also working out for your good and you will grow much more because of this painful experience. Thanks for sharing yourself.

    Rose Kirkland

  • ‘Real’ people are just the best. Thank you Mari. The comments on your post tell the whole tale.

    I couldn’t help but pick up the ball and share your post with our blog readers in the professional beauty industry on that topic. It is soooo fundamental. Hope my trackback registered for you. Life is an amazing journey with so many of us sharing the same trails.

    At some point in the next 30 days I will be contacting you regarding how your work might work for our clients. We only have four hands and as we’ve learned in the PR biz for 30 years, the good folks need to work with and refer to the good folks. .

    Thank you again.

  • Mari,

    Most people think that life is a journey. I suppose in the macro it is, but it’s really a series of journeys with beginnings, middles and endings. My hope for you is that, as this journey has ended, another more aligned to your bright light becomes available to you – and you take the step toward it with an open heart.

    Your disclosure only makes you more accessible, human and compassionate. Thank you for sharing your experiences and thoughts. You never fail to inspire.



  • Mari,
    I was touched by your story and courage for making it public. I wonder too how much personal information to share? For you these seems a healing, so it serves you.
    Blessings on your future journey wherever ot may lead.

    Interesting, Esperanza was may attorney many years ago on a wrongful termination case, she was amazing. I knew she quit practicing and wondered where life had talken her, so thanks for the connection. I no longer live in SD, otherwise would love to see her again.

    Thanks for your authenticity and sharing of your soul,

  • Very touched and impressed with your story and your struggles as you jouney with authenticity Mari…I have foolwed your path from the sidelines as I myself am exploring this world of social media.I point alot of people in your direction and tell them your story.
    Recently I was wondering how all this growth impacted your life because it seems that you are incredibly busy.

    I too come from a divorced family and have many issues around it. Sounds like you were able to manage it all as peacefully and respectfully as possible.While I find divorce a very sad time and sad story I can also appreciate its necessity in one’s journey to wholeness.

    Once again I am impressed and honoured to hear your story shared with such humility as you pave new paths for yourself and many others who are following closely behind.

    Bravo Mari!

  • Mari,

    I was so touched by your post. Thank you so much for sharing. I really appreciate you for “walking your walk” — not only do you TELL people how to do social networking but you SHOW them by demonstrating good practices. Keep up the good work – you rock!

  • Mari, I know you only through the Social Media Summit and following you since then, but the positive responses to this personal post are a resounding testament to your courage and your character and to the strength and quality of the community you have built. In being true to yourself, you have been true to us, and we are grateful for you and for the example you have set. I wish you–and Ty–only the fullest and happiest life possible.

  • Del Williams

    I am sorry that you had to go through this, but I want you to know that I am so proud of you. You have handled this with such grace and dignity. I look forward to getting to know you better, because you have enriched my life in the time we have known each other on Twitter. You have been gracious and kind beyond belief. I am excited to see what the future holds for you.


  • Mari,

    I’ve been traveling a lot this summer and only just read your 7/28 newsletter (and somehow missed the posts on FB and Twitter). I too am the child of divorce–a very messy one–and I’m so glad that you and Ty are taking a much more amicable path, and that you wee able to share so much together in your years together. Still, it can’t be easy.

    Wishing you the best of luck in the next phase of your journey. May it be all you hope for, and more.


  • Mari, your willingness to share in such an honest and elevated way is a true gift to those of us connected to you. Life is MESSY, and no amount of razzle-dazzle online marketing savvy is going to change that – and yet, so few leaders and high-visibility professionals choose vulnerability and tell the whole story.

    The fact that you pressed the pause button on your incredible, accelerating business to reach those who can really gain strength, courage, and wisdom from your own personal journey (including me)is an act of great kindness. And in handling the matter with grace and maturity, you show us all how to move beyond the petty and into the best versions of ourselves.

    Thank you.

  • Mari,

    What a Wonderful, honest and uplifting story! How brave of you to share it with all of us!

    Personally, I truly believe that we stay together (friends, lovers and so on) for as long as we have a mutual exchange, and when we come to a point where we no longer have that exchange, that’s when it’s time to move on. Hopefully we can allow ourselves/eachother to move on without any hard feelings… because the people we’ve spent such intimacy with, knows us the best.

    Wishing you the very best from here on, and that you’ll find your way (which I don’t doubt at all!)to spread your wings even further in pursue of your dreams…

    Thank you So much for sharing, Mari!

    Moria x

  • Wow Mari, I definitely connect with what you are saying. I have been going through a similar transition, however mine hasn’t been amicable. I have realized that I needed to make a true choice in freedom as well and something had to change in order for me to grow as a person. Although the last 2 years have been difficult I am starting to realize my true potential. I am finding my inner power and strength and I am finally really enjoying my life. I want to empower others ad share the information I know. I am quiet no more and I hope my light shines bright.

  • Hi Mari,

    Well, as you already know through our emails last night, I was totally out of the loop when this came through so just now am learning about your transition. AND, I have absolutely no doubt that you are tuned in, tapped in, and turned on to your own internal guidance system, and I bet that Ty is, too. You both honored where you are at and where you are going and you took action in a way that bespeaks of true love and respect for one another.

    Rock ON Mari and keep on Shining YOUR inner light – like the quote by Marianne says, none of us do anyone else any favors when we hold ourselves back from living as our Boldest, Biggest, and Brightest self. All Good Stuff!! 🙂

  • susan kuhn frost

    Awww…you are a trouper; you grab hold of life and live your truth. I hope our paths cross one day.

  • Joy

    Hi Mari—thank you for sharing such a personal part of your life. You are a brave and couarageous woman who is being authentic. I wish you much love and continued success.

  • Beautifully, magnificently, perfectly transparent Mari – a sweet gift of grace to others who are unfolding their relationships and the mark of a true leader and inspirational model to be open and vulnerable, honest and true and yet also be clear on your own ability to say and share that which YOU wish to have known in your own words and in your own sweet time. Thank you for your courage in Speaking Your Truth with such beauty. Many multitudes of blessings to you as you move further into your high destiny of service to the self and to the new world unfolding before you…..

    Love and infinite joy, peace and gratitude,


  • Dear Mari,

    Thank you so much for entrusting us with this information–both of your personal life (cause as you can see we really care about you and your happiness) and resources to help your friends through our own transtitions.

    Namaste babe,

  • Jeanne Quereau

    Dear Mari,

    I have only come to “know” you in print and by voice so far, but, you have already left a big imprint on me. Your openness, warmth and caring come through so strongly and has such a wonderful effect, not to mention all the helpful information that you offer, as well.

    Thank you for sharing this personal aspect–even though I’m only just learning about it now. And thank you for the resources you mentioned, especially the quote from Marianne Williamson. It is so “right on.”

    So glad you have chosen to let your light shine bright and that it has touched me, my heart, and the future of my work.

    Many blessings for you and your journey,


  • I don’t know why I found this post and I too think you are very brave in sharing your personal story here. Though I do think you are safe here among friends. Funny thing about perfect honestly is, the universe resonates with you 🙂

    Thanks Mari

    PS. I’ve heard of and admire Guy Hendricks through the Spiritual Cinema Circle.

  • Michelle

    So nice Mari to read the truth. Your truth.
    It resonated with me and I too went through a similar process – it takes a LOT of courage not only to face yourself initially but also to share it – with friends and family – and your network. You are an inspiration!
    Warm regards
    Michelle Hardwick of

  • I am SO late ctahcing up on this item of news in your life Mari.
    Nancy Marmolejo summed it up so eloquently when she says that you shared this “in such a beautiful and authentic way. Very classy and full of integrity.”
    May good luck accompany you on the path you are now travelling.

  • Donna Payne, The Web Coach

    Hey Mari,

    I know this is way after the fact, but something that always helped me thru divorce (I’ve had two) is buying myself a fabulous, crazy-expensive DIVORCE RING!

    Fly… be free my friend… until love knocks on your door again.


  • Hi Mari,

    Thanks for sharing your transition. So happy you could do it smoothly and elegantly…at least it looks like that to us. 🙂

    I agree with Esperanza (love her) that you are the most important person in your life. It’s like being on an airline when the attendant tells you to put your own oxygen mask on before helping others. You can’t help anyone else if you can’t breathe.

    Can’t wait until our paths cross again.


  • Mari Smith

    @Lorrie – you’re very sweet, thanks heaps, hon!! Yes indeedy, it’s been a smooth journey so far… though one dotted with interesting lessons along the way – noticing where I still get hooked, for instance. lol!

    So true re the oxygen mask!!


  • Mari,

    Taking a deep breath after that post.
    We can tell you are healing, and while the challenge you shared with us means a great deal, your wellbeing is too.

    I appreciate your leadership in the space of social media and as a good human being. You are in my prayers as the coming months will continue to be an adjustment for you both.


  • Mari, you inspire me on so many levels. Thanks for your openness, your grace, and your luminous light that encourages me to embrace my own larger life. L.

  • Kathy

    Thanks for sharing with such transparency. I am inspired and grateful. I had this same debate with myself before blogging about my breast cancer journey. Ultimately, I decided it informed my current way of being in the world so much that I really had no choice. Plus, I felt modeling transparency as a life coach allowed me to be of service to others as I desire to be. Namaste.

  • Beautiful!!! Your comment here has made my day, Kathy. Congratulations on being a role model for many! I trust you're all clear now and stronger for the experience!! (My sister in Scotland just did the “Moonwalk” – 10,000 women walk all through the night in decorated bras – to raise funds/awareness for breast cancer research!) This is the 2009 video: So inspiring!!

  • Honesty is always the best policy and I admire your candid truthfulness and thoughts. You are one to be admired for sure!

  • Mari

    Thanks for sharing about your life. And as a relationship coach, sharing your own relationship journey with others contributes to you and what you bring to your coaching.

    As a coach of other coaches, however, I've discovered that one of the biggest problems most coaches have is just exactly what you mentioned . . . how much to share.

    I had a radio program where I brought other coaches in for them to share what they were doing to help grow businesses, and help grow lives and results. But I quickly found out that coaches were against sharing their contact information.

    So, after actually trying to contact 75 coaches who had yellow page listings with this message, “I'm looking for a coach, give me a call.” And out of 75 not one called back. Then out of 150 listed on the internet in the Kansas City area, only 2 actually publish contact information on their website, at least where I could find it.

    And of those listed on LinkedIn most don't publish a website, nor email, nor contact iinformation.

    So, your article about “how much to share” is quite appropriate, but probably in a little different way than you had intended.

    As I talk with other coaches about why they do this, most women tell me they are afraid to publish their address or phone number, some from both genders tell me they are afraid of spam emails, etc.

    If someone wants to be hired as a coach, they want to be found for something, so why would they hide?

    In fact, I get about 500-600 emails a day, and fewer than 10-20 a day are from a prospective client. I deal with the junk emails with spam filters and love the other 10+ emails and calls a day that I get. In fact the way to get those is increase your visibility, and the bad comes with the good. But those running and hiding will never experience that kind of result.

  • Mark

    Mari, though I am just reading this post…it resonates so muc with me. I am going through a very similar life-change, and am felling like it has been a good thing for us both. Though it is difficult to pull apart those areas of our lives that were intertwined, and that we have a child together, we both know it is better for us to move on apart, rather than stay together in pain. Thank you for your willingness to be so transparent.


    Mark L.

  • Thanks so much for reading my post here, Mark — my heart goes to you and your family during this time of transition. Everything is always a perfect journey – only sometimes it's not til we have that 20:20 hindsight that we can really understand why things happened the way they did. 🙂

  • Thank you for your kind words! 🙂

  • Yinka Olaito

    Mari, thanks for been opened and honest. I wish you well in yoiur life journey. Hope the lessons learnt will help you succeed in future decision along this topic

  • Leyla Alyanak


  • Thank you for your kind words!!!

  • Thank you!

  • Anonymous

    I am reading this today, Aug 16th 2011 and so resonate with the words from Marianne Williamson, not in respect to divorce, my parents are more in love today than than on their wedding day 57 years ago; in respect to living authentically and doing business in that truth. I too have a transformational mentor: Patricia Wall who has taught me Self-Mastery.
    I say thank you for your inspiration and your open and honest approach in business. I am blessed to have met and mentored with you. 

  • Indu

    All of us have different paths to take, different roles to play and different choices to make. We cannot underestimate anyone’s personal journey. That is what I have learnt in life so far. Thank you for sharing yours. This resonates with mine more than I care to acknowledge. And gives me strength in knowing that I’m not alone. God Bless you Mari <3

  • Author David Brown

    Very powerful, spiritual, and impacting information Mari, thank you so much!

  • Thank you so much for your kind words, David!!

  • Owen Hemsath

    I love how transparent you are Mari. I seek to model this as I blog my own journey- like getting my teeth knocked out last month. I dont ever wamt to be accused of hiding anything.