I recently had an experience that resulted in my falling in love with myself. I have been studying and training and doing my inner work for 15 years now, and on this day, through perfect synchronistic events, everything shifted. They say you teach the work you need to learn for yourself. I support women in becoming more conscious, and helping them to realize how essential they are simply because they were born. It is my passion and my purpose, and my personal work.
My history has been trying to “prove” my worth and convince others and myself that I mattered. It was an exhausting process and something still always felt like it was missing. Like I mentioned, I have done much healing and work around this and my other defenses and wounds, and I am sure I will continue to deepen for the rest of my life, but a couple of weeks ago the Universe gifted me with something I have been searching for and longing for I suppose since I was a little girl. This something is myself.
I was with one of the communities I am a part of in the most exquisite mountains doing the work I love to do. During one of the many opportunities we are given to bring ourselves more alive, I received the message loud and clear, “I will no longer be careless with myself.” These are not words I typically use but the energy and the meaning behind the words began to unfold. Energetically, it felt as if I was releasing the grief and the shame I have held, the women in my family have held, my ancestors have held and women everywhere have held. The shame of each time we said “yes” when our souls were screaming, “NO!” The ways in which we have let others’ actions and opinions about us inform us of who we are. All of the times we have put others’ needs before our own, often forgetting we even have needs. The shame at the realization of how we have been so careless with ourselves, careless with our bodies, our hearts, our minds, and our spirits. All of the times we have simply settled for or given in. Each and every time we betray ourselves in big ways and in small ways that are so subtle we don’t even realize the betrayal. And each and every time we make ourselves small to make others more comfortable.
Do you know these places in yourself?
Where and how do you betray yourself day after day? If someone mistreats you, do you make that about you? Because it is not – it is about them. Their actions and opinions do not inform who you are. Yet, we do it all of the time.
How often do you dim your light to make others more comfortable or to not appear “full of yourself?” How often do you speak harshly to yourself? Do you not receive or reject compliments when they are offered to you?
How do you dismiss yourself or make yourself less then when in conversation with other women? How do you adjust to a social situation, rather than stay authentic to yourself? How do you dismiss your pain? When someone hurts you, do you lessen your worth and feel you must somehow deserve it? When you make mistakes or hurt others do you reject and devalue yourself, rather than forgive yourself? Do you mistreat yourself with food? Or perhaps, you freeze or shut down with lack of movement and flow?
If any of this and maybe all of it is true, are you ready to stop? Are you ready to shine your light and know your worth? Do you want to feel how essential you are? Do you want that reflected back to you through others? It is time to stop punishing ourselves for being imperfect. It is time to witness and be witnessed in our brilliance and our light.
You do not need to earn your worth, you matter simply because you were born. A baby is loved because they are alive in your arms, not because they cooed particularly well or are a good sleeper.
I’m trying to understand what happened on that mountain. What were the “perfect” circumstances that led to this shift? What I know so far is that I was ready. I had a bigger yes that I have had before. I was given the opportunity to feel my power: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.
There is nothing I needed to “do” in order to fall in love with myself, rather I chose to let go of all the feelings and misbeliefs I have clung to about myself. I did this in relationship with others – men and women who could meet me where I was, who I could be raw with, people who I could tolerate being deeply witnessed by, and people who not only accepted, but mirrored and celebrated the authenticity and vulnerability that I was willing to allow.
I now not only know the importance of realizing how essential we each are, but I know in every cell of my being that I am essential, that I am badass, that I am humorous, that I am wise, that I am nurturing, and that I am authentic. I will no longer carry shame or feel like I am bragging to recognize this truth that is myself. In order to truly serve those I work with, I need to own this about myself, and celebrate it.
This does not mean I won’t forget, but I know I will come back to the truth.
We cannot do this alone. We have to talk about the ways we betray ourselves on a daily basis; we need to talk about our shame and our pains. However, I’m clear now we need to talk even more about our brilliance. We need to talk about it until it feels natural and essential. There can be no more getting small or dumbing it down, to make everyone “comfortable.” We need to stand up and shine and be witnessed.
I feel like I have let myself out of jail, and I have a freedom to be in a way I have not known.
From this new place, I can serve the world in the ways I am meant to. I hope that you will join me in declaring,
“I will no longer be careless with myself.”
Beautiful post Jennifer. I agree, and I join you in declaring “I will no longer be careless with myself.” Thank you for sharing your wisdom and authenticity.
Thank you, Kim. Yes, thank you for joining me! You are such an essential woman in my life, my tribe and in my heart.
This is a very essential phrase for me at this time to work with. Thank you Jennifer – just a simple “I will not be careless with myself / my life”. Well, Wow….something to take to corners unspoken.
Chris, both you and your sister are in my prayers. Thank you for taking the time to read this and for your sharing. I hope we continue the conversation.
Beautifully transmuted Jennifer! Thank you, your awareness shifted something in me too!
Thank you, Helena! I am so glad you felt a shift. While vulnerable, it also feels so empowering to be sharing in this conversation with both women and men.
Spectacular post. I’m on the exact same path. Totally vibing with you
Thank you, Laura! I’m so grateful to have fellow journeyers!
Beautiful post! This resonates with me so much!
Thank you Michelle! Your words mean a lot to me.
It would appear we are walking this path together, sister. Thank you so much for sharing so beautifully!
Thank you, Rebekah! Lovely to walk with you. 🙂
Jennifer! Yes! I’m feeling your passion and your light and an awakening of that in me.
Thank-you for this beautiful sharing. xo
I know you understand, Cindy! You were certainly with me in my heart. Thank you for sharing. xo
I’m in full agreement with you. We make decisions and do things to keep others happy instead of doing what lights us up for fear of upsetting others.
It is only by being true to ourselves that we can have true fulfilment and happiness
Well said, Tamsin! Thank you for your comment.
WOW. This is beautifully written Jennifer and truly speaks to my core self. This is something I need to learn as well as teach my girls.
I think the best way to teach the girls is to know it and heal it in ourselves, and to TALK about it as women. I think the older ones read my posts :), but if not have them take a look. Thank you for commenting. xo
Jennifer, this really spoke to me. I recently felt really angry for how careless others have been with me and realized that I was really angry at myself for letting it happen and not being true to myself for fear of making others uncomfortable. It is up to me to not be careless with myself, to honor myself, to not lessen my worth or shut myself down. Thank you for this beautiful, honest reflection of your experience!
Exactly, Ragan! We do is so subconsciously or unconsciously all of the time. Thank you for sharing and for joining me on this journey.