Hello Dear Readers,
It has been some time since we discussed femininity. As I mentioned in my last post, it's been an interesting and transformative time for me in regards to my own personal definition of femininity and what it means to me.
With so many different voices in the conversation, it becomes difficult to decipher and discern your own definition of what femininity and feminine expression is to you.
But even with so many of these differing opinions, there are many similarities between what many thought leaders in the feminine and masculine communities are saying. While I'm not one to ever make generalizations, there are some characteristics and qualities that many of us who identify as feminine women can agree upon. Likewise, there are many habits I'm sure we can agree that are negatively affecting our relationship to our individual femininity.
So in today's post, I'll be listing out some of the bad habits I consistently work on, when I notice they start to impact my feminine expression.
Living In The Past
This one is, without a doubt, my biggest struggle. And the habit that keeps me separated from my feminine genius the most.
When we live in the past, we are communicating SO many things to ourselves and to the world around us. We're saying that we're not content with where we are or what we have now, and that we'd rather be experiencing where we WERE and what we HAD "then". I watched a very poignant Tik Tok about this, where a young man was crying as he explained that being in your mid 20s is a constant wishing for "then" and grieving of a time that has passed. It struck me, because that's exactly what I experience. And perhaps you do too. You don't have to be in your 20s to understand the feeling of wanting to go back, do things over, experience something again, or relive a moment in time.
But when we do that, the feminine, which needs to operate in the present, is stunted.
The feminine, which lives and breathes through emotional expression, can't fully be present if it's living in the past. How can we fully feel and express the range of emotion that we experience on a day to day basis, if we aren't present enough to acknowledge these feelings when they arise?
I'm going to say something potentially radical: it's okay to be emotional.
What's not okay, is allowing your desire for "then" to cloud the beauty that is now. The beauty that it is to fully feel and fully live the feminine experience.
Challenge: Write down the memories you continue to re-live. Write them by hand, fold them up, and place them in a safe space. A beautiful box, or an envelope, that you can revisit easily and consistently without constantly living in the past.
2. Self Doubt
Doubting yourself helps no one. I'm going to challenge you to ask yourself this: what is playing small doing for you? Or for anyone else?
I think one of my favorite aspects of femininity, is the fact that we all bring something beautifully unique to it. Some of us experience our feminine expression through art, through song, or through dance. Others experience it through homemaking and family building. Some of us through teaching and volunteering.
If you don't express yourself fully, you are depriving the world of something it desperately needs: you.
You're depriving the world of YOUR unique essence and YOUR unique way of experiencing the world.
Imagine a world where there was no Oprah. No Frida Kahlo. No Georgia O'Keefe. No Rosa Parks. A world where we didn't get to benefit from the beautiful art, words and lessons from the women before us.
Imagine if they had played small. If Frida had stopped painting because not enough people liked her art. Or if Jane Austen had stopped writing because her books didn't sell.
Self doubt helps no one. It benefits no one. It simply robs us of the beauty your femininity might bring to the world.
Challenge: "Play Big" in one aspect of your life this week. Whether it be in love, in work or in faith. Have radical hope and trust in yourself and your abilities.
3. Cynicism and Sarcasm
Consider this blog post just a letter to me, calling myself out. Because this is another one that I know many of us, myself included, struggle with.
More often than not, cynicism and sarcasm come from a place of hurt. They come from a place of rejection, a place of feeling like you need to protect yourself. I know this, because this is where it has come from within me.
When you're cast off, ignored, and pushed aside, the best way to cope, is to act like you don't care. The best way to "fit in" is to make the joke about yourself first, before someone else has a chance to make it about you. Trust me, I know.
But what kind of energy is that putting into the world around you? An energy of hate, negativity, and lack of self worth.
Sure, often times, it's good to protect yourself. To be skeptical and to question things. But more often, it's a good idea to protect yourself with love and to lead with love, compassion and understanding. It's not about allowing yourself to get walked over, but it's about knowing the line between pumping out negativity or pumping out positivity.
Cynicism and sarcasm are just ways to silently scream for help.
To beg for someone to show you that they can be trusted. Or to take the time to look past your walls, and truly try to understand you. Which, let's be clear, not many people will do.
But the armor of being a cynical and sarcastic woman is not one you want to put on every day.
Challenge: Put on the armor of love. The armor of hope. The armor of understanding.
4. Living A Burnt Out Life
Man oh man do I understand what burnout is now more than ever. Working a 9-5, maintaining my personal brand, my romantic relationship, my familial relationships, my friendships, all while trying to do all of those things well. It's exhausting.
Our society praises being busy. We love and lift up the people who have a million causes that they're fighting for all while being a mom, wife, tech entrepreneur and whatever else.
How many times have you asked someone how they're doing and the first thing they respond with is, "Busy."
Busy, should not be a description of how you're doing.
Living burnt out causes us to feel overwhelmed on a daily basis. A feeling that should really only happen occasionally, ends up being a constant state of being.
The Feminine needs TLC.
And yes, the TLC that looks like bubble baths, face masks, and sleeping in. But also the TLC that looks like therapy, journaling, and meditating.
I challenge you, to rebuke living a consistently overwhelmed, and burnt out life.
What are the things you can remove from your life, that will allow for space for that much needed TLC?
Challenge: Identify what is causing burnout, remove it, and replace it with something peace-giving.
5. Hating Your Cycle
I remember in one of my earlier videos, talking about how much I hate my menstrual cycle. And let's be clear, she's not my best friend. She's painful, often times debilitatingly so, and she interrupts my life plans more often that I'd like her to.
But over the last few months, when I've started tracking my cycle and taking my temperature every morning, I've learned more about her. I know, down to the exact day, when to expect her arrival. It's insane.
I used to write her off as an annoyance. As something I'll have to deal with until I'm in my 40s or 50s and then I'll gracefully transition to menopause. I never took the time to get to know her. I never took the time to understand her. (To be honest, the same could be said for much of the feminine bodily experience but we'll talk about that another day).
Simply put, hating your cycle, is hating one of the most natural parts of yourself. When you think about it, you could change everything about yourself: your face, your hair, even your skin color in some instances, but as a woman, you can't stop flo from showing up.
Hating your cycle is, arguably, a form of self hate. And writing it off as something that is an inconvenience or something that you dread every month, takes away part of your beauty.
Challenge: Spend your next cycle pampering yourself. Eat healthy, foods from the Earth. Make an anti-inflammatory tincture to drink. Take a bath with lemongrass and epsom salt. Lay on your back and meditate. Fully feel the experience of womanhood.
Part two coming soon. ❤️