And then, just like that, all hell broke loose.
As I write this, I have just returned from a truly epic road trip with my family. Enter Sunday, with a smile on my face and just so much juicy excitement to get started, to get back to my office and my conversations with you and my client work and all of the incredibly exciting ideas for deepening my business and bringing some of my fiercest dreams to life.
And then came Monday morning. With just one of the worst panic attacks ever.
I could gloss over this. Keep it behind the scenes and go about my merry way – because, after all, all is well now. But I won’t.
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Because this – this – touches upon the core of feminine leadership as I see and live it.
What you do when shit hits the fan.
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As I write this, on Thursday, I can look back on Monday and Tuesday – and accept that both were marked by some of the ugliest, most persistent and quite frankly venom-spewing headshit I’ve had to deal with in ages. Any of these sounds familiar to you?
“Holy fuck. I’ve just been away for 6 weeks. What was I thinking?”
“She looks so put together. She’s just amazing. Hm. Maybe I’m actually not as far as I thought I was.”
“Good lord girl, you cannot just reach out to people and ask them if they’d be interested in this idea you’ve got. Of course they’re not. Remember you thought it’d be a great idea to go live your life for a bit, hm? Traipsing about the world? No wifi? You’re no longer anywhere on their list.”
“Why even bother (as I sat down to write a post). Do you think people actually read this?”
“You keep on dreaming girl. Just don’t come running to us when your heart’s bruised and your book refused” (yes, my venom-spewing voices can do a good rhyme).
The list goes on and on. The battle waged and raged all day long. Until finally I asked why. And interestingly, this came along: a book I had bought on our travels. “Women trailblazers of California, Pioneers to the Present.” (authors: Gloria G. Harris & Hannah S. Cohen)
Pioneers. I’ve always been fascinated by the traces of powerful women in history. So little is known. So many voices silenced.
And yet, here they were, in this book: powerful women. Women on the barricades, in boardrooms before boardrooms were a thing, in courts and on the street. Pioneers, trailblazers, going for what they believed in and what they wanted, no matter what.
No matter what.
How do these words make you feel? “No matter what.”
Yes, I do want you to stop for a minute and really pay attention to how you feel.
“No matter what”.
When I did, I realized that what these traces in history don’t show us – are the battles inside. The battles of the mind, of the venom and the despairing voices.
Traces in history speak of steely determination – but don’t mention how it had to be sought out on purpose, time and time again, each day anew, how the voices would whisper and suggest that just this once, it would be okay to let it slide… to give in…
They don’t speak of the lonely tears, hidden beneath the covers of a duvet.
Not the thoughts, in those decisive moments before standing up in a room full of men, unused and hostile towards bold women, and voice a clear – and different – opinion.
The moments where defeat loomed large, and every fiber of a woman’s being yearned to simply throw in the towel and walk away from the fight.
The fiercest battle we will ever face, is that within our own mind, our own being.
It requires commitment. Determination. A fierce awareness of our emotions and thoughts, and the path they would seek to lead us on.
Now, our emotions and thoughts aren’t bad or evil. Or out to get us.
But in a society where being different is punished or ridiculed, where sameness and obedience to the spoken and unspoken rules is what is being asked of us, where the general tone of voice IS venom and negativity and hostility – our emotions and thoughts will mimic those habitual behaviours in an effort to keep us safe.
Guilt, shame, despair, unworthiness, fear – they are the tools of the protection mechanism that kicks in at full force when we gear up to do something that puts us outside of the norm, outside of what is safe. Our innate reaction is to run. To hide away. To acknowledge that when it already feels this bad now – surely this isn’t really the path to take?
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My Gorgeous One. We are the trailblazers, the change-makers, the pioneers if you’d like of this time and space.
With a deep burning desire to create positive change in the world. Pulled towards a bigger destiny for ourselves, and in the process, we blaze a new path for all of our children to experience.
Seeking a life that is lived from the heart, with passion and purpose, and so much love. With meaning and meaningful work and deeply-felt connections with others. Deeply embedded in the ever-continuing flow of universal creative force, in a dance of desires and excitement and joy.
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And so, the thoughts and emotions that are the most intense, the most hurtful, that make you feel like shit and want to crawl back to bed, defeated – these are the ones you’re not allowed to turn away from.
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These are the ones you need to look at with a piercing gaze, and put all of your might towards, to learn how to free yourself from their painful grip.
I know how to engage in this dance. With these thoughts, these poisonous voices, these icky feelings. I know how to free myself from their whispers and burden – and turn my attention upon my dreams, and visions, and desires, and move forward on the path towards them. But even so – commitment is an ever-recurring choice. Each day anew.
Stepping into Luminary Priestesshood, accepting the aspect of our calling that has us step up, more visibly, it isn’t the easiest path to walk.
But I don’t think we have a choice. Our happiness depends on it. Those moments where we dance with the bliss of fulfillment. Of living your purpose and knowing that what you’re doing, how you’re doing it, is contributing to more happiness and meaning in the world – it’s truly the only thing that will set our hearts on fire. And bring us peace.
Knowing we stayed on the path. No matter what.
What are the thoughts – the venom – that are the most intense for you to walk away from?
Let us know in the comments below…
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