Woman on Wire


Have you seen the 2008 documentary Man on Wire ?

It chronicles the story of how a young Frenchman, Philippe Petit, plotted, planned and staged what he called “the coup” — his code name for what ended up being his ethereal, mind-blowing tightrope walk between the two World Trade Center towers in August 1974.

I am moved to tears every time I watch it.

When I feel tired or question my dreams and the things I want to do in my life, all I have to do is slip into YouTube for a few moments and watch this man literally dance on an one inch wire, miles in the air.

His happiness. His ease. His delight.

man on wire

I just saw an interview with him where he was talking about the walk. This is what he said:

Whenever other worlds invite us in…whenever we are balancing on the boundaries of our limited human condition, that’s where life starts — that’s where you feel yourself living. Shift your weight and become a bird.

After I took a few steps, I knew my element.

There was ease, simplicity, and I was smiling in disbelief.  After all of the detours, disasters, victories, and disappointments; I was suddenly carrying my life on a path that was the simplest, the most beautiful, and the easiest. 

This from a man walking on a wire on what were then the two tallest structures in the entire world.

Death was on either side of him with one misstep or shift in the wind.


A lot of times my clients will talk to me about their fears and what Petit called “balancing on the boundaries of our limited human condition” — when they describe this to me in sessions, they have other names for it, though, like:

  • the storm
  • the edge
  • the unknown
  • the spiral


They talk about it like it’s darkness — like it’s a death.

And in a way, it is.

When you’re on the precipice of talking a walk into living a life that embodies who you want to be, how you want act, interact, and show up in the world?

And you are committing to that so fully that you’re willing to leave behind the comfort and safety of what you’ve always known?

That’s leaving something behind. It is a clearing — a death.

Because what is on the other side of it — after all of the disappointments, questions, friendships that end, hits and misses and just plain shitty days — is that you have an equal parts crazy and grounded belief that you will be able to fly

That’s how incredible it is — what a privilege it is — to be a human being …  breathing, feasting and embracing life.

It is ordinary living in an extraordinary way … and it’s life on the high wire.

All of this can be your body of work — a curation of your extraordinarily ordinary moments connected to your bold pivots and exhilarating discoveries.

That’s where you feel yourself living and life taking your breath away.

I know what this means. I live it and I give it. I am not here to live passively — I’m here to fly like a bird.

B of W Fall 2016 landing page

Ready to be the woman on wire?

I got you, girl.

I’m the tight rope supporting you while you dance and fly.

The fall 2016 Body of Work six week course begins on Wednesday, September 21st.

Registration is now open at www.laura-wagner.com/bodyofworkcourse.

Do you want to sit on the sidelines of life wondering when someone or something will happen to make things change for you?

Or do you want to shift your weight, take a step, and become a bird? If your answer is “yes,” then my program is for you.


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