My wonderful friend Heather Waxman and I have been having a really important conversation lately about the beautiful, but oftentimes neglected, self-loving act of going inward.
We are living in an incredible time- a time where women have more say in the workplace and power in their voice than ever before. No longer are we living in the days where women fill “X” role and men fill “Y” role in relationships. We’re in an age of discovery, rebirth and expansion.
We create our own roles, even if it’s one that hasn’t been created publicly before.
Women have been taking life by the reigns, discovering new ways to use their unique feminine power by combining both their creative geniuses with their powerful determination. This has resulted in some incredible female leaders, both in the media, but also in personal social circles.
I feel beyond blessed to be living in a time where I have so many inspirational women to look to whenever I feel overwhelmed, over-worked and discouraged. Not only do I have plenty of “North Star” inspirational figures, but I also have a supportive tribe of soul sisters I can cling to when times get hard. I have a woman in my life that has “been there, done that” with just about everything I experience. It’s beautiful.
But, like in anything, there’s a lesson within all of this that I can choose to ignore, or I can learn intently and take to heart.
Though I have women in my life to turn to, to listen to and to receive from, when is best for me to simply…not?
When is it best to soften up, quiet down and just be within myself?
There are moments when I feel scrambled, running around left and right trying to do, do, do and I forget to simply be. I fear what will happen if I’m not setting out to accomplish and “conquer.”
“Will I lose this opportunity? Will I get behind? Will I miss out? Will I become weak?”
I have both feminine energy and masculine energy, but when I forget to allow my feminine nature to live in me (and fully), then my masculine “never stop” attitude will easily take over.
When times get frustrating, it’s all too easy for me to seek out wisdom and help, and immediately take action. It’s possible to do so not only because I have so many powerhouse females in my life, but also because we live in an age of technology where we can receive instant advice about anything.
Want a solution to your problem? Boom. It’s there. Within seconds, you can reach out to your tribe, search an article or seek out the story of someone else who’s been in your shoes. You can find a solution, and move on.
Or so you think.
This “fix it and move on” attitude comes from the masculine energy that we all have within us, but let me tell you: it takes more self-awareness to know when to turn down the volume on this quest and simply allow yourself to go inward.
What if you don’t have to move on from this feeling immediately? What if you don’t have to find the answer? What if there’s nothing to find, but instead there’s everything to feel?
What if what you need right now is the total opposite: the act of going inward and escaping your ever-addicting solution-focused mission?
There is beauty within going inward, and I am not referring to only the physical aspect of retreating. Retreating within the body, meaning, taking your body indoors or to secluded places, is a beautiful way to go inward. On top of that, there’s also the aspect of being “with yourself” mentally.
I know that you have amazing friends with great insight, but it doesn’t matter how amazing it is: if you don’t know yourself first, none of it will matter.
What often makes people succeed in business can make people fail in self-awareness.
Want to know yourself? Want to move beyond this emotion of pain? Want to escape any morsel of sadness you may be experiencing? If that’s the case, you must first become the spiritual healer of your own life by feeling what it is you’re feeling.
Go inward. Stop seeking ways to move on from whatever you’re experiencing right now because chances are, you can learn something valuable from it just by going inward.
Heather sent me this excerpt from Woman, Earth and Spirit that explains perfectly why going inward is so important for the feminine:
For many of us, there’s a sense of shame that comes along with seclusion, which is what keeps us from taking this time to ourselves.
Our culture glorifies “busy” to the point that it can feel shameful to do nothing. I oftentimes don’t want to be in my apartment for too many hours in the day, partly because I like to get out and enjoy coffee shops, but I believe there’s another secret motive behind this, and that is because I have shame about being indoors for too long.
I feel guilty. I feel a sense of “laziness.”
When did retreating to one’s sanctuary become a sign of idleness?
I’d like to propose that it’s everything but idleness. Becoming a recluse could be the most potent form of self-awareness. The reason I believe this theme is coming up in so many of our lives is because of the changing of the seasons. With winter coming, people may be feeling more introverted, and some might even be feeling sensations of depression.
What I ask of you during this time isn’t to force yourself to connect with others, go out every night and ask people for their insight on every topic of your life. This is the perfect time to go inward, physically and mentally, as you find peace within your own heart and home. There is beauty in the act of retreating.
In a world where introverts are turned into extroverts with the power of technology (God bless it!), listen to your feminine desires when they arise. If you feel called to be with yourself, listen. Forcing yourself to throw your sacred seclusion out the window will create an imbalance in your nature, which needs more protection now than ever.