I’ve been marvelling at the beautiful winter we are having here in Scotland. In the last few weeks I’ve woken several times to snowy ‘white-outs’ around me and as we live in the middle of a forest, it’s quite stunning to be greeted this way.
I still feel I’m in hibernation, tuning to my own rhythms and to the depth of dreaming and nurturing time that my body and Soul need.
I know that I’m not with this desire alone. I have a profound sense of the collective field right now, noticing how many others I know are needing this spaciousness of ‘being’ time.
I wonder why it is so countercultural for us to allow this way of being, especially in the context of leadership and social change or activism. What I’ve seen and heard so far from the women I’ve been in Circles with, is how much guilt and shame there is around slowing down, around receiving nourishment for self, around staying connected to ourselves instead of being pulled off centre by whatever we are feeling pulled and tugged to do next?
Yet embodying ‘being’ is critical to how we move forward with wisdom and sustainability.
The culture we are swimming in seems to breed an expectation for us to be constantly moving, constantly giving, available 27/7 on social media and pushing to create and accomplish our goals as fast as we can. There is also an added internal and external pressure amongst women who want to make a difference, that we must act now, no matter what it takes, along with a fear of missing out or being judged if we don’t!
It became clear to me yesterday, whilst supporting a totally amazing Women’s Circle in Oxford, that even the way we frame our dreams and visions has a ‘masculine’ bias. In other words, there is a sense that our dreams should be oriented around what we want to create, lead, provide and give to others through our work.
Of course there is a receptive element, in that there is often financial reward and much inner resourcing that comes with it. However, the danger is that those potent dreams can subtly miss out the very aspect of our feminine nature that needs to be re-rooted and embodied. What if we really gave ourselves permission to want to just be? Permission to want spaciousness and nourishment; to want time to rest and reSource ourselves… to want to stay present and loving in our relationships; to want time in nature, to connect with our Soul’s desire and listen deeply?
What if this year, instead of placing our sense of value and success in just getting out there with our gifts.. we put MUCH more emphasis on spending time inside, connected with our hearts and Souls?
I’m not saying we have to give up our passion to create change, but that we find a way to truly integrate the feminine principle of receiving, alongside the masculine principle of giving out or creating.
To me this is about changing the Culture around us as feminine leaders, beginning within ourselves – giving ourselves permission for us to bring ‘being’, receiving, nourishment and deep connection into our dreams and visions, into our daily lives, into our awareness and into our leadership. How can we become role models for this through how we lead? (I can hear myself speaking loudly to myself on this one too!!!)
This is not just about how much better we’d feel as a result. It’s about the consciousness that we can then bring to what we do; how much more resilient and generative we are in our responses to the world around us; how much inspiration we can connect with and act on; how much more support we can identify and allow into our lives and how much more capacity we have as change leaders to ‘hold space’ for transformation around us.
It’s only from this deep inner commitment to self-care, connection and resourcing, that we can give ourselves fully to what we’re here to do.
I believe that as Feminine Leaders, no matter what our gifts are, what we’re really doing is changing culture. Starting by changing the culture within ourselves, we’re changing the culture out there from the manic, stressful, unconsciously motivated culture of excessive speed and doing, to a culture of being whilst doing.
How might you bring a radical permission for ‘being’ into your vision for your leadership? How can you change the culture out there from within?
Replay for The Women’s Fire ~ 14th February ~ Leading A New Culture Of Being