Insight + Interview: The Spirited Woman Foundation’s Nancy Mills

We meet people for a reason; we come together, whether with missions alike or diverging, and offer up important opportunities to those we encounter: opportunities to connect, to learn, to grow. In the case of Nancy Mills, we found all three. Nancy, founder of the successful and inspiring Spirited Woman Foundation, has made it her mission to give back in powerful (and empowering) ways. We were fortunate to meet her so serendipitously at the LA Green Fest, and to be able to join her in giving back to the non-profits she supports through our donation-based class this Friday. To learn more about her motivation and connect with more people who want to have fun making a positive difference,  join our community for free snacks and refreshments at our yoga mixer tomorrow; until then, explore our uplifting interview with Nancy below!


Who is “the Spirited Woman” to you?|
A Spirited Woman is unstoppable. A woman who carries an energetic life force within. A woman who shines her light to the world.

I began Spirited Woman as an empowerment community for women close to 20 years ago. I felt there needed to be a place where women could come together and support one another; shine a light on each other if you will. I believe we’ve accomplished that – Spirited Woman is now a leading woman’s empowerment community known around the world.

What is the Spirited Woman Foundation and how was it created?
Almost four years ago my dream of establishing The Spirited Woman Foundation came true. Oh, it feels so good to give back. The purpose and mission of the Spirited Woman Foundation is “To help heal and support women through actions of empowerment.” As I expressed above, Spirited Woman is one of the leading women’s empowerment communities in the world, and we are so pleased to carry our mission one step further – by helping others who deeply need our help.

A large portion of our Foundation money continues to be raised through our Sisterhood of the Sacred Scarves project. It is by purchasing our “Spirited Woman Prayer Scarves” that a portion of each scarf’s proceeds is donated by Spirited Woman into the Spirited Woman Foundation. It also comes from the Spirited Women worldwide who continually support us through our various activities.

What is the Sisterhood of the Sacred Scarves?
I would say the Sisterhood of the Sacred Scarves is the life force of Spirited Woman and it makes my heart sing. Going strong now for close to five years, it honors women through scarf and ceremony – bringing together spirit-minded women from around the globe. The Spirited Woman Prayer Scarf is a symbol of spirit, empowerment and beauty. To date there have been 16 scarves each with a different theme. 1000s have been sold worldwide, connecting women together energetically. A portion of each scarf sale is donated to our foundation which in turn donates funds to select non-profits.
I also believe The Sisterhood empowers women on every level by giving them the opportunity to purchase and enjoy a sacred scarf, join a global community, come together through ceremony, and a heartfelt way to make a difference and contribute to non-profits that benefit women. 

What is the 1000 Goddesses Gathering?
The 1000 Goddesses Gathering occurred on October 22, 2016 in Washington D.C. It was a visionary event designed to bring Wisdom and Compassion into Washington, D.C. so that it would ripple from there throughout the world. It also was created to invoke the Divine Feminine to ground Her healing energies deeply into the Earth. Close to 500 sisters from around the world came to herald in a positive arc for humanity.
I am proud to say that Spirited Woman was one of the sponsors of this event, and that a portion of NAMASTE – our latest Spirited Woman Prayer Scarf – was donated to the 1000 Goddesses Gathering to help fund this significant day and that there were a sea of sisters wearing NAMASTE, shining their light together.
1000GoddessGatheringWhere do you see a need for creating change in our world today?
Oh-my-goddess that is a big question. I think the first thing that comes to mind is peace over violence. We need to stop the violence. When I was a little girl (many moons ago) I stopped going to temple. Why? Because I really felt that religion was the seed of war. And all these years later, putting religion aside, I still feel we need to stop the violence. Do I have an answer? No. I just really want a change.
You’ve told us that the Spirited Woman Foundation contributes to charitable causes and we love it! What charities have you worked with? What causes have you supported? 
To date, we have supported 14 non-profits. Typically, we take a portion of the proceeds of each scarf and donate it to one organization at a time. We’ve supported an array of causes from domestic violence to teen empowerment to breast cancer awareness. I look for non-profits that are a bit under the radar and truly need our support. For a full list, and the full story, I urge anyone reading this to go to our site.

What motivates you to give back in your own life?
I am motivated to give back because it is part of my essence. I think the better question is: How can I not give back? Giving back just makes me feel good. One of the greatest things is to see a face light up, a smile of appreciation, a nod of acknowledgement. We all need each other. Pay it forward and it will come back.

How do you suggest people get involved in giving back? How can we be the most effective with our efforts?
Gravitate to like-minded people and causes. If you don’t like dogs, don’t give to animal shelters – it will not be part of your passion. Feel into your passion – what is it? Do you love to cook? Then reach out and feed the homeless or start a cooking club with a group of like-minded sisters and help put food on someone else’s table over the holidays. I feel this way, you are most effective in giving back if it fuels your passion and helps you fuel someone else’s dreams.

What are the top 3 most important qualities you think a business or community could possess?
Clarity of mission. Compassionate recognition. Focused growth.

What inspires you to connect to CREATE and contribute to our First Friday event?
Believe it or not, I started doing yoga over 40 years ago! It changed my life. So I am a yogi at heart. When I recently met Marissa and Selah, two of the co-owners of Create Yoga, at the LA Green Expo, I instantly connected to their sense of helping others. They just felt fun, strong, compassionate and smart. Then I went online and read about their mission. How could I not get involved? We have two separate businesses, yet we are clearly on the same page.

Where do you see the Spirited Woman Foundation in a year? 5 years? 10 years? What about yourself?
I see the Foundation as helping many more non-profits and with larger donations. Next year it is my dream to sell 1,000 scarves – presently we sell from 400-500 per year and by selling 1,000 that will enable us to give more. In five years, I would like the Foundation to have a much larger presence internationally. Every non-profit we have given to (except one) helps women within the United States, I’d like to work with many more charities that work with women internationally. It would be an honor to give to women’s causes around the world. In ten years, I see more of the same, but bigger, and on a personal note, I’d like to be on the board of other charities that pertain to women, so that I can lend my expertise and mentor others.

How can the community support your Foundation’s efforts? 
The best way to support the Spirited Woman Foundation is to buy the Spirited Woman Prayer Scarf for yourself, your friends, your family, as gifts, for your alter, for your travels, for your meditations, your yoga class – whatever. The more scarves you buy, the more women on this planet will know about us, and the more we can give.