Meet the Founder of Soulful Living
Welcome to Soulful Living! I’m so pleased that your soulful journey has brought you here! My name is Valerie Rickel, and I’m the founder, creator and soul of SoulfulLiving.com, a 23-year-old inspirational website, devoted to personal growth, spiritual development, self help, and self improvement.
Twenty-two years ago, I made a commitment to myself to launch SoulfulLiving.com on January 1, 2000, in honor of our New Millennium. And, that, I did! Time sure flies quickly. It feels like it was almost yesterday when I first launched the website. The feelings of excitement of birthing this project into life are still as fresh with me today as they were then. How was I to know as a young 30-year-old that I would still be blessed with the gift of creating and presenting SoulfulLiving.com to the world twenty-three years later? Life is sure filled with many wonderful surprises. I think when you start up a creative entrepreneurial project of any kind, you never really know where it’s going to lead — what its future will hold. You are so “in the moment” of creating, of following that “greater call” — that “flow of inspiration.” You hope that your project will grow and prosper, but you just never truly know. My life has taken many twists and turns, but, here I am 23 years later, still doing the work I love! How would I have known that I would be so blessed?
When I set out to create SoulfulLiving.com, I was grieving the loss of my father and had been searching the internet for personal growth and spirituality resources for comfort and healing, but there was so little available online at the time. I knew deep in my heart that I needed to create a website that would offer hope, healing, and inspiration to people around the globe. I had been “called,” and I knew that creating this website was something I could not not do. And, I discovered that a wonderful byproduct of following this calling — creating this website — was that it helped me to heal, in many of the same ways I had hoped it would help others. (Such a blessed gift!) Isn’t there a saying that it is hard to help others without also helping oneself? I have found that to be very true and am so grateful. SoulfulLiving.com is my calling – my Gift from God – my Truth, My Light. I can’t say for sure whether my life purpose found me, or if I found my life purpose, but I know, without a doubt, that sharing my passion for living a soulful life is why I was put here on this earth and that following my soulful life purpose feels really good.
I am in utter amazement at how large the internet has grown over the past two decades and the number of inspirational web resources similar to SoulfulLiving.com that have appeared during this time. It makes me feel like a “pioneer” of sorts… It’s a funny feeling. It makes me feel just a wee bit old, too, to be honest, but, also very honored, joyous, blessed… Many feelings wash over me…
In January 2020, we celebrated our 20th Anniversary! And, the coming years are going to be years of incredible growth and expansion for SoulfulLiving.com. I have so much planned for the website that my heart and soul floweth over with joy and excitement! New features of the website include an Inspiration Gallery, our Soul Retreat Gift Pack, as well as the thousands of Archived Articles contributed by our best-selling authors and experts from over the past twenty three years, plus an abundance of wonderful new articles and wisdom from many of your favorite authors!
I am so grateful to you and hope you have found SoulfulLiving.com a valuable and meaningful resource over these past years! I am blessed with the gift of feeling a giddy, child-like joy upon waking each morning, knowing that I am working in service to you and helping make the world a better place, all while getting to do work that I love…deeply. I feel very blessed to be given the gift of SoulfulLiving.com. Wow, twenty-two years… I feel like I have raised a young adult… SoulfulLiving is my child, and I am her mother. I am so excited about the future and the website’s continued evolution. Thank you so much for joining me on this awesome journey. I am so grateful for your support!
I’d love to take the opportunity to get to know you better and make some introductions… That’s me up on the top left, and my kitty cats (the CEOs of SoulfulLiving.com) are to the right of me. I was devastated by the loss of my precious 14-year-old gray kitty to a terminal illness while I was working on the website’s remodel in 2014. She used to sit here on my lap (and sometimes on the keyboard!) every day as I worked on SoulfulLiving.com. I am such a huge cat lover, and she has left behind a huge hole in my heart and home. I made a special dedication of SoulfulLiving.com’s Redevelopment in her honor (see below).
To the left is a photo of my beloved Upstate New York. A native of Los Angeles, California, I summoned up the courage to make a cross-country move a few years ago, to a region that I had had a love affair with for many, many years. There is a special magic to this part of our country that my heart cannot even put into words. It is impossible for me to drive the country roads of New York, during all four of her delicious seasons, without hearing my heart sing and feeling like I have found my Nirvana! I am an amateur landscape photographer, among many other things, and photographing the beauty of this region is one of my most favorite pastimes. You can see many of my photographs featured in our Inspiration Gallery.
I am very excited to get to know each one of you! If you have the time, please email me and say hello. I love hearing from visitors! Before I sign off, I would like to share an essay with you that I was asked to write for a book several years ago. (Some of you may have already read it, and for some of you, it will be new.) It tells a little more about my “soulful life purpose” and the creation of SoulfulLiving.com. I hope that it also serves as a jumping off point for us to get better acquainted! Click here to read “Living Your Truth.”
With love and gratitude,
Founder and Soul
Valerie was deeply touched and inspired by her father, an artist and philosopher, and in his wisdom, creativity, and spirituality, she found the inspiration for her website, SoulfulLiving.com. The passing of her father and mother and the traumatic events of 9/11 all proved to be catalyzing events from which were born Valerie’s passionate interest in soulful living and her intense search for life’s meaning. Deeply committed to the opportunities her website has opened to her, Valerie’s mission is to share her passion for soulful living and inspire and enhance the lives of others. Valerie and her website, SoulfulLiving.com, have been featured in numerous print publications, including Carol Adrienne’s book, When Life Changes or You Wish It Would; Pat Sampson’s book,The Power of Positive People; Meg Sanders’ book, The Good Web Guide to Mind, Body and Spirit; The Los Angeles Business Journal; Health magazine; Health and Fitness Magazine; UCLAlumni Magazine; Gospel Today magazine; and most recently, Bryant McGill’s book, Simple Reminders. View more press here.
A creative entrepreneur by nature, Valerie enjoys spending her time developing heart-centered and soulful ventures, both online and off-line, and supporting other entrepreneurs in pursuit of their creative dreams. In addition to creating and designing SoulfulLiving.com, she offers creative services and business and marketing consulting to soulful entrepreneurs and professionals, including best-selling authors, thought leaders, visionaries, spiritual luminaries, life coaches, psychologists, yoga teachers, personal trainers, holistic wellness experts, jewelry designers, artists, and many other creative souls. Visit her website at TheCreativeSoul.com.
Valerie's Coaching Programs
Valerie in the Press
The Power of Positive People
Valerie Rickel, the Founder and Creator of SoulfulLiving.com, is profiled in Pat Sampson’s book, “The Power of Positive People,” along with her recent essay, “Living Your Truth.”
“Bruins in the Internet Age” – UCLAlumni Magazine Interview with UCLA Alumna Valerie Rickel
When Life Changes or You Wish It Would
SoulfulLiving.com’s Founder, Valerie Rickel, is profiled in Carol Adrienne’s book, “When Life Changes Or You Wish It Would,” along with the story of the development of SoulfulLiving.com.
Be the Present
There is a beautiful scene in the movie, “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” that comes to mind this Holiday season with its deeply meaningful message. The scene is a profound reminder that in order to truly experience the beauty and richness of the moments of our life, we need to be fully present in […]read more
Living in the White Space
I’ve been thinking a lot about “white space” lately. Specifically, how to create more of it in my life and the many benefits of “living life in the white space.” Having grown up in a family of artists and graphic designers, I often heard reference to the term, “white space,” in discussions about creating “good […]read more
The Courage to Change
A few years ago, I made a very courageous change in my life. I moved from the city of Los Angeles, where I had lived my entire life, to a lovely little soulful town in Southern Oregon. I simply packed up my car, drove and didn’t look back. Well, that may be oversimplifying the move […]read more
Your Unique Brilliance
An Unexpected Gift from the Sea I was living a few blocks from the ocean last summer when I was gifted with an unexpected surprise from the sea – a starfish! It had apparently gotten swept up into my garden, during a severe wind and rain storm. (Or, so I thought at the time… I […]read more
Living Your Truth
While I was growing up, my father often said, “The Truth cannot be told.” This was one of his favorite expressions, and it brought me to one of my own: “Your Truth cannot be told.” Why not? you ask, and I reply, Because our Truth is our Highest Good, our Heart, our authentic inner knowing. […]read more
My artist father “lived for” finding the meaning, messages, and symbolism hidden in his favorite artists’ work and in his own art, as well. He was a graphic designer by trade, but by night, he “painted from the right side of his brain” and often stayed up till the early hours of the morning, exploring […]read more
Personal Statement at Launch, January 1, 2000
My Soulful Journey
The vision for SoulfulLiving.com was born out of my great passion for soulful study, which was heightened when my father passed away. He was a very wise and soulful man and a great inspiration to me. In my mourning, I found peace, hope and purpose through spiritual growth and learning. SoulfulLiving.com is my soulful purpose–I am able to share what I am most passionate about in life: soulful living! I receive great pleasure and satisfaction from knowing that I have the opportunity, through SoulfulLiving.com, to inspire and enhance the lives of others.
Some Background on My Soul
I am a native of Los Angeles, California. I earned my Bachelor of Arts degree at UCLA in geography with a focus in psychology, have a background in art, journalism and computer graphics, and, during the years of my professional career, I have been working in marketing, website design, and public relations. I have many wonderfully supportive souls in my life–family and friends–who fill my heart with much love and joy.
My Soul has been Called!
I believe that my life’s experiences have led me right to this soulful endeavor. The only way to describe the experience of creating SoulfulLiving.com is to say that it literally poured forth from my soul. It is my personal contribution to our new millennium. It is my hope that, in this new age, we may all live joyful, peaceful, and soulful, whole lives.
–Valerie Rickel, January, 1, 2000