Why do you need to nurture yourself and how do you do it and when!?
Before answering those questions I will start with a bit about myself and how I found the answers for me!
Once upon a time, as a child and then a young woman, I used to feel very fragile, regularly buffeted by the prevailing forces. I traveled from situation to situation, from school to home, traversing my world, confused by my relationship dramas, all too aware of the wobbliness of my feelings within.. Sometimes I felt on top of the world, I felt bright and good inside, but then my light would dim and I’d wonder why I felt somehow broken, how to make my path in life and to develop the faith in myself I needed.
In the living with those questions and through daring to become the heroine of my own tale, I’ve launched myself into the void more times than I could tell, seeking freedom from constriction and to develop the power I needed to create the life of my dreams. Over the years I’ve grown that core of strength and self-knowledge, that guides me like my own North Star .I’ve traveled away from my family and comfort zones. I’ve learned what ‘the shadow’ really means for me, I’ve tried and tested so many healing modalities and trained in quite a few of them too. I’ve practiced at home, on my front lines, seeing daily how I can bring about change where it’s most needed, I’ve prayed and danced and learnt conscious breathing under great duress. In time I cleaned up my own inner world a lot. I took responsibility for my feelings instead of blaming my nearest and often not so dearest! I took full responsibility for my self nurturing, rather than waiting to be given permission to look after myself. I realised that only I could know how I was feeling and take the steps necessary to keep me feeling good. Through being attuned and caring of my reactions to my world, I brought balance and self love to my hungry, sensitive system. The landscape changed, so dramatically that I want to share the good news! It is so worth honouring your dreams and innocence, but it requires tenacity, honesty, soulfulness and courage. I reach my hand out to the women I see all around me in the hope of sharing the tools and knowledge I’ve found and the ease that we all deserve to have.
Let us consider where many of us find ourselves these days….Today more than ever, women are asking enormous amounts of themselves and their families with them. We wish to be dynamic in the world in our career choices, to be successful lovers, wives and mothers and to look and feel good no matter how busy or stretched we are. We hope to be glossy, confident creatures doing our work well, managing our personal lives beautifully and balancing it all with style. This is a high ask of ourselves, and is leading to huge discomfort, not only in our own lives but for those who live and love with us. Balancing it all has become a crazy juggling act for millions and visits to the doctors for depression, obesity, chronic fatigue syndrome and other stress related diseases are up to unprecedented levels.
Knowing and honouring ourselves is not taught or modeled to many young girls. We are often brought up by busy, working parents, taught at schools in which the focus is mostly on the development of the intellect and ushered into our working choices before we have learnt to hear and emphasise the voice of our own inner knowing. The media upholds the myth of feminine power through outer beauty to ludicrous levels. Generations of girls are now emulating the posturing of pop stars and minor celebrities, who often express angry feminine power and vast swathes of perfected flesh as the tool they wield. Anorexia and binge drinking are becoming the norm amongst many young women in the Western world.
There is something very wrong with this picture, yet I can see an evolutionary force at work in us all. Pull back from seeing the view up close and you will see a wave of awakening that is sweeping change throughout the world and we women have been at the forefront of it, demanding glass ceilings imposed from within or without be removed so we may rise into our fullest selves. We are a force for good that holds the keys for human joy and relationship bliss and the speed at which we live that is only up to us. The Dalai Lama is quoted as saying ‘the world will be saved by the western woman’. I agree and I believe that is because we are not only under the kind of pressure that creates diamonds out of coal, but also that we have access to books, support and therapies that educate us how to manage this pressure and to become powerful compassionate souls that make a difference.
However I’d like to add, that as we become out of necessity that powerful creature, we will find ourselves partnered by the kind of men who have also met and embraced their shadow, developed their feminine skills and who now offer their strengths to the co-creation of a beautiful society.
Never underestimate the power of your self-nurturing, it is not only a necessity for your own health and wellbeing, your relationships and pleasure in life, but also you become a magnetic presence out in the world. You awaken others by the sound of your voice, the warmth in your eyes, your ability to respond to life circumstances from your authentic self. You bring a quality into life that will inspire others, bless them and soothe them. Your inner work is one of the keys to our society changing into what we all desire at heart, your influence is immeasurably huge and much needed.