What Matters: Tina Roth Eisenberg on Reincarnation and Listening to Your Heart

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Debbie Millman has started a new project at PRINT titled “What Matters.” This is an ongoing effort to understand the interior life of artists, designers, and creative thinkers. This facet of the project is a request of each invited respondent to answer 10 identical questions, and submit a decidedly nonprofessional photograph.

Tina Roth Eisenberg is a Swiss-born, raised, and trained graphic designer gone NYC. Over the past 15 years, Tina started numerous side projects that have organically turned into businesses: a creative co-working community called FRIENDS, a global lecture series called CreativeMornings, a simple to-do app called TeuxDeux, and Tattly, a high-end temporary tattoo shop.

What is the thing you like doing most in the world?

Gather humans.

I am a community builder at heart. Nothing pours more rocket fuel in my jetpack than enabling joyful, generous, and thoughtful IRL human connection.

What is the first memory you have of being creative?

Arranging my food artfully on my plate.

What is your biggest regret?

Ignoring my heart’s whispers.

Six years ago, when my marriage ended, I set out on a personal journey of self-reflection and deep inner healing—I call it the journey from my head into my heart. Looking back, I wish I would have listened to my heart sooner. Thanks to therapists, coaches, bodyworkers, and meditation teachers, I have unlearned unhelpful thinking and behavioral patterns imprinted on me as a child. This slow but gratifying process has taught me that my outer world is a direct reflection of my inner world. I have since learned to hear and honor my heart’s whispers.

How have you gotten over heartbreak?

I once remember a guy calling it quits and me instantly channeling the energy into cleaning out my closets and scrubbing my apartment. Once there was nothing left to clean, I called up 18 friends and convinced them to start our own Salsa class at a renowned dance studio in Soho. Needless to say, the studio owner was a bit stunned. I kept up with Salsa lessons for over a year. FUN!

What makes you cry?

Any interaction that displays deep love and kindness.

My kids expressing themselves lovingly and kindly? I cry!

Music that resonates and is an expression of deep love? I cry!

Reading a poem that oozes love? I cry!

Noticing a random loving and kind interaction? I cry!

I good-cry a lot.

How long does the pride and joy of accomplishing something last for you?

It doesn’t last long. [lowers head in shame]

That is something I am working on as it directly relates to my ability to be in the present moment. Despite the inner work I have done, I still tend to be in my head often, thinking about some moment in the past or future. Whenever I manage to get out of my head and into my heart and into the present moment, I sense a feeling of deep gratitude emerge. That’s where the magic is at, and the pride and joy of accomplishment can get unlocked.

Do you believe in an afterlife, and if so, what does that look like to you?

YES! I believe in reincarnation!

Fun fact—my father did past-life regressions in our living room on a weekly basis. Conversations about the afterlife were normal at our dinner table. I remember when I visited NYC for the first time in 1998, I had a deep feeling of ‘coming home.’ There is no doubt in my mind that I have lived in NYC before, which multiple intuitives later confirmed. I since have learned to pay attention to moments where I sense a deep familiarity with other humans or places. It’s no coincidence!

What do you hate most about yourself?

I dislike that I am having a hard time shaking the belief that I have to earn to be loved.

What do you love most about yourself?

My laugh.

My enthusiasm for life.

How I show up as a mother.

My ability to flip a difficult situation into something positive.

What is your absolute favorite meal?