Clever in Cleveland
by Katie Kurtz
My roots are grounded and buried deep within this illustrious city.
I’ve always loved Cleveland but when I returned after college, I started to become restless and felt like that I needed a change. At the time, friends were fleeing the CLE and flocking to Columbus, Chicago, New York, anywhere but here. Cleveland was great to come home to during the holidays but they looked forward to returning to their lives elsewhere. I naturally felt like that should be my move too and began to doubt that Cleveland could give me the life I wanted or daydreamed about. I found myself conflicted with this desire to bolt or stay true to this place I’ve always proudly called home.
And then this shift started happening-both within me and this great town. I realized that what was driving me to doubt myself and this rust belt city was the fear-based story I was telling myself.
You know that feeling. That sensation of the universe giving you a gentle nudge or sometimes it feels more like a drop kick. Some call it a gut feeling, inner guidance, instincts, spirit or intuition. It can feel like a faint whisper, a rational voice or a bold exclamation. For me it started as faded background noise that soon turned into a deafening blare. I realized that this innate, gut feeling I was experiencing was really a strong desire to share, connect and uplift others within my community. It was at Inner Bliss Yoga Studio where I was introduced to a quote by Marianne Williamson - “a miracle is a shift in perception from fear to love”. I made this connection and began making it my daily intention to choose love over fear, to believe in miracles. I saw my perceptions change and in turn it changed the way I saw the people and environment around me. It changed how I saw this city; it changed how I believed in Cleveland.
I was certain I needed to trust my gut but I was unsure of what that meant. Without a plan or goal in mind, I created Clever in Cleveland and began sharing and connecting on Instagram and Facebook with others on the platform of cultivating love everywhere in Cleveland and beyond.
I believe in all encompassing love-kindness, gratitude, joy, purpose - all of that good stuff that makes us feel awesome, makes the people around us feel awesome, and in turn raises the vibe in our city. Authenticity, truth, freedom, adventure, connection, energy are what I desire and what I seek out because it makes me feel fully alive.
There is no longer doubt that I belong in this city to fill it with boundless love and light. I don’t know where I am going or where Clever in Cleveland will take me, but I know I know I will always honor my roots and continue to grow.