Winter is a time of year I used to wish away and force to be different. A time where I and many I know feel agitated, lethargic, cabin fever, or not entirely ourselves. We feel off. We feel different. Because...we are.
"It is uncomfortable to be one's own authority, but it is the only condition which true personal power can develop." ~ Starhawk
I was walking back to my car after running an errand. As I opened the car door I heard a man yell out his window “dammmmmmnnnnn giiiirrrrllll!” Then the following conversation ensued in my mind:
Embracing my feminine side, deciding what it means to be a woman for me, is teaching me how to feel safe, whole, and held.
A master in this lifetime of my masculine side of doing, achieving, pushing, planning, analyzing, thinking, and leading, considering the feminine side of my being felt foreign, vulnerable, and too “fluffy” at first. It felt counterproductive to slow down, I had deadlines to meet! It felt confusing to feel versus think my way through situations. And yet, this shift has given me the power to finally start feeling at home with myself.
If you’re a strong, independent, high achieving self-identified woman (including trans, genderqueer, and non-binary people who identify as women), you may be rolling your eyes. You may be clicking “close” in the browser window. You may think this has already started out as too “woo woo.” If you’re a person who self-identifies as a man, you may think this doesn’t apply to you at all. I invite you to hear me out. All human beings have masculine and feminine energies, or yin and yang as it’s often referred to in Eastern traditions.
Understanding both the masculine and feminine sides of our being and becoming a master of both brings us into wholeness. This is where a sense of home inside ourselves is born.
Before I tell you my story, let me share some of what has shifted for me since embracing the feminine:
I value my self care as a priority without struggle.
I feel a greater confidence and clarity in who I am.
I experience a regular stream of intuitive messages to guide my path as I execute my plans.
I have a willingness to adapt and be flexible with ease.
I allow others to lead and take on different roles rather than leading all of the time. (We can’t lead all the time, this creates burnout and conflict in relationships.)
I’m able to let go of the need to “save” others and always be “the helper” during times of need. I now care most about supporting, empowering, and serve the other person’s needs, versus my old need to “fix.”
I greatly value my felt and lived experience alongside my thinking analysis.
I have increased presence when I’m with people I love.
I am a better listener.
I no longer feel drained from other’s energies. This used to be a regular daily experience for me.
I now know how to disentangle my energy from others and recognize when I’m entangling with other’s energies in an unhealthy way.
I no longer feel the need to build walls as boundaries to “protect myself.”
I know when I’m in alignment and when I’m out of alignment with my Truth.
I’m less reactive and triggered because I’m more grounded in my body and my actual experience rather than the stories in my mind.
If you desire these shifts in your life, let’s chat! I offer free 30 minute discovery sessions where we can get to know each other more, spark clarity for you, and if we both agree we are a strong match, plan some empowering 1:1 work. I’m currently scheduling 1:1 clients into 2018, so schedule now HERE.
These are not small shifts. I now live inside and embody an entirely different state-of-being on a daily basis more than ever before. Fear impacts me less. I co-created a partnership where empowerment and deep respect are front stage. This has allowed me to feel safe and create a healthy attachment in a romantic relationship for the first time in my life. I have more faith that things will always turn out alright, even when they don’t feel like they will. I’m able to be with intense emotions and no longer feel I need to run away or shut them down when they arise.
In my 20s, I realized that every morning I woke up as a young woman who had accomplished her checklist and felt...lost. Some space deep inside of me felt empty, vacant. I was in a marriage and felt lonely. I had a long list of friends and felt isolated. I was extremely involved in meaningful work during my work day and studies and felt unfulfilled. I was strong, independent, and high-achieving and felt insecure. I was...exhausted.
When we forget the feminine side of ourselves, regardless of our gender identity, we burn out, we numb out, we feel uninterested, and we survive rather than thrive.
I had mastered pushing, striving, doing, planning, reviving, and leading. I was a warrior. And over time the mastery I created was an unbalanced expression of my masculine side. Because the feminine side of me wasn’t there to marry the thinking and the feeling, the doing and the resting, the intuitive and the rational, it was impossible to find balance for long. Inevitably any moments of balance would tip off easily. This led me to conclude despite big changes in my life to get divorced, sell my house, and get into my own place, that I needed to get away. The only way I could create balance was “away.” I daydreamed about backpacking around the world for a year. I ultimately drove cross country for several months and moved into a Buddhist monastery. I was searching. I later realized I was searching for a part of myself long forgotten and lost...now remembering. The feminine experience of my being.
The reality was that I had experienced windows into my feminine side when I went on silent retreats, during my morning meditations, and when I read inspirational readings, but this side of me remained unintegrated, separate, and associated with only intensely spiritual experiences or burnout recovery moments rather than my everyday life.
After my time in the monastery I went to the mountains of Arizona. There I met a female shaman. She invited me one evening to do a card pull without my prompting. I pulled from a goddess deck and then she asked me to write a story about the woman in the picture. It was chilling. When I re-read the story, I started crying. I recognized I had written a story about myself. The woman in the card was holding swords. She was a warrior. The story I wrote about the warrior, was about how exhausted she was, how much she yearned to offer her divine gifts, and to live in ease. This was the first spark of seeing myself in a divine feminine light.
During my time in Arizona I decided to take a trip to Sedona. Standing by the famous Buddha Beach, a feminine vortex energy center (no less), I was inspired to make a covenant with the Universe and the Earth. I drew symbols and charts in the sand I was inspired to draw and said a prayer. I committed myself to going back to DC for one year and being led. Led to understand why I had to go back and not choose a life that felt easier...in the monastery.
My mind didn’t get it, but that didn’t matter. Something deeper inside of me did and awakened. It’s like that...mysterious. Somehow by just turning our attention, our curiosity, towards the feminine side of us, and an interest in integrating it, embodying it more fully... it awakens and starts to do the inner work. I have for you, that if you’ve read this far, something inside of you is already awakening. Because nothing is coincidence.
If you're curious to learn more about integrating the feminine in your every day life, I'm leading a women's circle in 2018 focused on owning our personal power, unleashing the wise woman inside, and living INside our truth. You can learn more HERE.
Look at my own life after the moment in the sand where synchronicity took hold. I met divine feminine teachers without prompting and suddenly all of my mentors were divine feminine teachers. (I literally realized this just recently!) Every spiritual book I was inspired to buy turned out to be about...the feminine. I started valuing community and sisterhood. I participated in rituals and started creating my own to spark the creative, right brain side of me. I got a tattoo on my left arm of flowers blooming to acknowledge this new divine feminine garden I was growing inside of myself even though I had no idea what it really meant. I just knew I had to. I cycled with the moon and seasons of nature. I studied animal medicine and earth spiritual traditions. I dedicated my morning meditations to connecting to feminine energies of life including Mother Earth and the moon. All of these changes came from a simple moment like the one you are experiencing right now...reading a blog post. A pivotal moment where something sparked inside of me and my curiosity naturally attracted more.
For this week’s Joy Tip Wednesday I want to invite us to explore our current connection to the feminine.
Start by reflecting on the following questions with yourself as a prompting to feel into how much the feminine is in your life. You may journal on them, meditate, or have a conversation with a close friend. Whatever you naturally feel drawn towards. See what arises to start getting in touch with the feminine side of your being:
How often do you flow with what is arising versus planning and executing life?
How many times a day do you tune in to your interior experience versus your external experience?
How do you take the current cycles of nature, the cosmos, and your inner hormonal shifts into consideration when observing your current mood?
If I were to ask you to relay events in your life that happened recently would you spend your time recapping the play-by-play events or the way you felt?
And finally, how often do you feel at home in your body, in your mind, in your emotions, and your being?
Know that this is just the beginning. The starting point to touch more into a side that many of us have tucked away or even shoved down. It may feel vulnerable, emotional, or even like you want to simply disregard the possibility of flowing more and letting go of control, or understanding how the greater Universe impacts your personal experience. Don’t worry about it. It’s all perfect.
When I first started consciously turning towards the feminine it felt strange, sometimes a little too “woo woo,” and I feared that it would get me off track from my goals. Despite these feelings, I stayed open, curious, and stuck with my exploration. I knew something needed to change and remained open to the possibility that my feminine side might have answers. I encourage you to do the same. What amount of feminine informs each person for their ultimate wholeness, balance, and thriving is unique for each person. The only way to find out what that is for you is to begin the exploration. Enjoy.
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As we're getting ready to give our energy to other's this holiday: let's get perspective. If you're anything like me, you're feeling the crunch. The fact that we all try to complete the same amount of work despite the reality that we have days off. (Remind me why we do this again..the math doesn't add up) Juggling multiple engagements, visits, and trips. A larger pull on our energy reserves as we spend more time "out" in social gathers and conversations. This can all predictably pull us off center if we keep operating in the same way before the holidays show up.
I only found the love I was seeking because I became the woman who could live in it. Many years ago I was jaded about relationships, marriage, partnership, and all things romantic love. After my divorce, I was convinced that I wasn’t meant for pairing up. I was sure it stifled my spiritual practice, inevitably led to suffering, and stopped us from awakening.