Tuesday, May 27, 2014

How To Be A Woman: 5 Ways To Nurture & Celebrate Our Femininity

I was 30 years old, and a mother of 3, before I began to question what it meant to be a woman. Up until that point, I had referred to myself as a “girl”. 

I vowed I would always be a girl at heart.

The truth is, while-ever I was a “girl”, I could expect less of myself. It was my way of staying small and unnoticeable, my way of denying that I was more powerful than first thought, because that was too...confronting, too challenging. That realization would require too much of me.

But as I began to make tentative steps to embrace womanhood, I began to see and understand things that I had never really thought about before. 

Namely, the current imbalance between the feminine and masculine energies in our world, and what this means, not just for ourselves but for all humanity.

We live in a society that organizes and governs itself according to masculine concepts of competition, hierarchy, status, logic and rank.

Masculine energy is practical, focused, determined, proactive, goal-oriented. The female energy is spiritual, fluid, adaptable, accepting, process-oriented.

The masculine energy aims and achieves, while the feminine energy attracts and receives

The masculine energy thrives on competition, while the feminine energy thrives on co-operation. We don’t need to look very far to see the competitive masculine energy at work – our education system grades and ranks students (competition), governments are elected via a poll (competition) while experts remind us that “competition is good for the economy.”

The masculine energy “hunts” – goes after or pursues what it wants – while the feminine energy “gathers” – attracts or manifests what it wants.

For the male energy, the outcome is important, but to the feminine, the journey is what matters. During times of crisis or challenge, the masculine tendency is to “fix things”, while the feminine energy seeks to “understand things”.

Both energies are equally important and necessary – one to envision and understand, the other to implement. Neither is better or worse. They are just different. They are two halves of the whole.

In an ideal world, the two energies would balance and complement each other. Like the yin and the yang. In harmony, they allow us to experience life in it’s richest, fullest expression.

Each one of us – no matter what our physical sex is – harbors these energies, yet for many of us, the feminine is suppressed in order to survive in a society that organizes itself according to masculine concepts and priorities. The feminine principles of nurturing and co-operation simply get pushed into the background and ignored.

One (unintended, I believe) result of the feminist movement was the further imbalance of the two energies – rather than encouraging both sexes to honor the feminine and creating a society that embraced all parts of ourselves, it simply gave women permission to compete and achieve (be more masculine.)

As a society, we pursue (masculine way of doing things, again!) a politically-correct version of “equality”, which has nothing to do with balance, and everything to do with trying to conform women into roles and positions and policies which are entirely foreign and unnatural to our feminine spirit. A band-aid solution, at best...

It is time for us to embrace our femininity in an authentic and loving way. This is not about getting a Brazilian wax, and fluttering my eyelashes at the opposite sex, in order to get what I want, but rather embracing all that I am – a whole, other, neglected part of myself.

I’m talking about finding a balance – between achievement and process, between planning for the future and enjoying this moment, between aiming for what could be and accepting what is, between pursuing what I want and simply allowing what I need...

Trying to embrace my own femininity has been a learning experience. Ironically, it has made me stronger yet more humble, focused but more adaptable. I have come to believe there are some core aspects that are unique to being a woman, in tune with our feminine energy. 

These are gifts that we can offer ourselves and others, and the world with love...


The masculine energy is all about persistence. The female energy surrenders. I am not talking about allowing ourselves to be abused or mistreated - I am talking about surrendering to life itself, to the experience, to the moment, to God...

On the rare occasions I have surrendered 100%, letting go of all my own wants and plans and expectations, I have experienced the most wonderful state of bliss. (I wrote about it here: 5 Things I Learnt in Heaven.)

We have been conditioned to think that surrender is a sign of weakness. I believe the very opposite is true. Surrender – giving up the need to be in control – takes incredible courage. Sometimes it is the hardest thing in the world! It is an act of the deepest faith. 

We may reach this point only after we have thoroughly exhausted ourselves by trying to keep all the balls in the air, organize everyone and oversee every aspect of our life. It can be a surprising discovery that the world doesn't actually fall apart if we step back and simply allow some things to "be", rather than trying to force our own will all the time. 

Even consider for a moment the female sexual organs, they are the epitome of surrender - dark and soft and yielding. “Soft” and “yielding” does not imply weakness, in fact, it is these same qualities that enable the birth canal to expand and unfold, and safely deliver a new life into the world.

The feminine energy knows that there are mysterious, unseen, powerful forces at work in the universe. The feminine energy is open and intuitive to these, and willing to be guided by these forces that others might call “fate” or even “coincidence”.


This is a quiet assurance of our ability to manifest the very experience and result that we need. (Not always what we want, mind you!! But always what we need...). And when that experience comes our way, we will not only meet it, we will rise up to embrace the challenge.

This is a deep inner knowing that WE WILL BE OKAY - whether in a relationship or alone, with children or without, with a career or without...we already possess everything we need to flourish and grow.

Marianne Williamson once wrote: “Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate, but that we are powerful beyond measure.

It is our light, not our darkness that frightens us.” That quote is so often attributed to Nelson Mandela, but it came from the heart of a woman...

Love Fully

Only in the past 2 years, I started to become aware that I withhold love from others, for fear of being taken advantage of.

The truth is, it’s not that I'm afraid of being taken advantage of per se, I was afraid that if I did get taken advantage of, I wouldn't have the confidence to speak up and deal with it assertively. It really stemmed from a lack of faith in myself – to set boundaries, to say no, to speak up when it was awkward or uncomfortable.

To love fully is an act of courage. It puts us in a position of vulnerability – which is why it takes a strong person to go there. We are stating that we will give of ourselves, regardless of the eventual outcome.

Mass media bombards us with songs like we “can’t live without him” and “I’ll be your slave”. This diminishes our true power. We will be just fine “without him”, and deep down, we know that.

Acknowledging this allows us to love deeply and fearlessly, to give ourselves completely to the joy of this moment, this embrace, this connection... and not be distracted by what may, or may not, be tomorrow.

Honor Our Role As Mothers and Nurturers.

Our bodies bring forth new life.

The feminine energy tends toward caring and nurturing and making a home, whether we have actually birthed a baby or not. We listen to our friends problems and console and sympathize, we delight in decorating or arranging our own homes.

Despite the natural desire to nurture others, this can sometimes deplete our energies to such an extent that we find ourselves unable to nurture ourselves.

I believe it is vital that we nurture ourselves , for two reasons. One being that giving and giving (without putting back in) eventually results in depletion. At this point, we are empty, and resentment is bound to set in.

The other reason is that being happy and fulfilled (filled full) is possibly the most loving gift we can give to our children, our family, and our selves.When we are exhausted and running on empty, we have nothing to give others - we simply can't give away what we don't have.

Nurturing ourselves also includes nourishing our body with pure, living foods, nourishing our spirit by doing what we love, that which lights us up, and nourishing our mind by choosing energizing and uplifting thoughts.

It's okay to ask for help. The feminine spirit thrives on co-operation, not on some misguided competition to see who can be the strongest and most stoic and "go it alone".  By the same token, it's time to stop viewing other females as "competition" and instead support and co-operate with each other as sisters.


For too long, we have been lulled into believing that others know best for us. There is nothing more dis-empowering, than the belief that we cannot trust ourselves!

So many people believe that a doctor knows their body better than they do. Just because someone has studied the textbooks and knows the scientific names for the anatomy and physiology of the human body...does not make him more of an expert than the person who has actually inhabited that body since before birth! No certificate or textbook or qualification knows your body more intimately than you know your body.

For several decades now, we’ve listened while experts argued and changed their minds over how we should discipline our children, whether eggs are good or bad, whether margarine is healthier than butter, whether women can “have it all”...and on and on it goes. Instead of empowering us, the barrage of information has just confused us, and made us more reliant on the supposed expertise of others.

(What does it take to be an “expert” anyway?! Is there a special course? Must one reach a certain level of qualification or experience? Or if they talk about a subject long enough and eloquently enough, others will inevitably bestow them the title of expert?)

Deep down, we know what is right. We’ve always known! But we tend to get confused by all the conflicting information and voices, and we begin have doubts that we may not actually know what’s best for us! Every question can be answered in the body - just visit a trained kinesiologist if you have any doubts. Kinesiologists are not trained to know what's "best" for your body, they're simply trained to "hear" what your own body is saying. 

Our bodies are always talking to us...if only we cared to listen, or seek to understand. Our body constantly gives us feedback about what we ate, whether we're getting enough sleep or nutrients, whether we're happy and fulfilled. When we don't listen, the symptoms become more pronounced until finally, illness or disease manifests. Sometimes sickness is the only way our body can make itself heard...

Listening to our intuition, our “gut feeling”, our inner voice is like any habit – it gets easier with practice.

Sometimes I imagine what our world might look like, if the masculine and feminine energies were both honored, both respected and both utilized – neither one dominating or “in control”, but both complementing the other and working together for the benefit of all.

Would there be domestic violence? Would there be wars? As the bringers of new life into the world, I believe we are intensely aware of the fragility and the preciousness of life. 

We women have so much to offer the world - not by contorting ourselves into unnatural (and unfulfilled) versions of whatever the status quo demands - but by giving ourselves permission to embrace and nurture our forgotten, feminine self. Nobody else is going to give us permission!

Every woman who does this makes it a little easier, a little more acceptable, for their fellow women to do the same...

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How To Meet A Kindred Spirit 
How To Accept Your Self and Your Life..."As Is"

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