My birth certificates says I’m a María Alejandra Carles, but please call me Mayi. I’m obsessed with party props. My uniform of choice is my paint stained Eeyore pajama. If left unsupervised, I could eat an entire batch of Red Velvet cupcakes. Nice to meet you.

I believe that there’s a voice that only you can hear – it’s the call to why you’re here + why you matter. Hearing it + heeding it is the greatest gift you can give to yourself + to the world. I also believe that if you silence it, something magical will be lost + all you will feel is emptiness.

So, I’m on a mission to be, well, Mayi + inspire others to get clear on who they are + what that looks like + how to use that competitive advantage to dazzle. So, if you’re ready to let go of who you think you should be to dream bigger + imagine better + be happier + embrace all the beautiful messiness in-between, you’ve come to the right place.


Beneath the bubbly personality + funny Panamanian accent + goofy party props, I’ve got some wicked career diplomas + Hall of Fame accomplishment under my belt that make me the best in the world to teach the Life is Messy philosophy. 

I studied Art in Scuola Lorenzo de Medici in Florence, Italy; received a dual Bachelor degree in Communication Studies + Art Theory and Practice + a minor in Art History from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois; + a Masters in Art in Visual and Critical Studies from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in Illinois.

Prior to becoming a full time artist, I was Program Coordinator for The Aspen Institute’s leadership program The Central American Leadership Initiative Foundation (CALI), a non-profit organization that seeks to inspire leaders across the region to transcend from success to significance.

I’m humbled by all the kind comments + amazing support I’ve received since starting my messy empire. Some of the cool placed that have featured my work are: US News + the cover of HOLA + ProBlogger + Red Carpet + Artful Blogging + Creative Live + The Unmistakable Creative Podcast + Roxy. 

I now live + love + create full time in Panama City, Panama. You can find me every week on Heartmade, where I’m the host of the very loved Friday Video Time show, or in the kitchen making homemade granola for hubby (and by granola I really meant cupcakes).


Alright, enough about me. Now, I’d love to hear about YOU!!! What’s your biggest obstacle that’s preventing you from reaching the life you dream? I’m here to help. Just e-mail me at

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