One of the things I don't miss from my NYC corporate life is the masculine hardness that kept me tense, stressed, and closed to the magic and miracles of the universal energy all around us. I was caught in the societal fear that there isn't enough money to go around, so you need to work yourself into the ground in order to get ahead. It was the constant chase to be better and look better than those around me. I forcefully tried to fit in a box that my colleagues, bosses, and friends would respect.
Essentially, it was competition hell. I was sleep-deprived, stressed, and lonely.
In an effort to better my resume, I completed degrees and courses and participated in endless committees — not because I wanted to, but because I thought I had to to get ahead. I wore dark pant suits and tailored shirts, high heels, and straightened my hair in an effort to fit in with New York corporate style. I sat in a gray cubicle hunched over my laptop for 10 hours a day. I walked through the streets "city-style" with my head down, not connecting with anyone. I ran miles and miles after work to keep in shape and to stay healthy. Again, I did it all out of fear, not out of sheer enjoyment.
I tried to date, but consistently found myself meeting men who were keenly aware of the abundance of New York City women. I never felt seen. Actually, I wasn’t “seeing” myself. And deep down, after years of education, I didn’t even like my job. It was just a job to pay the bills and live the lifestyle.
All of this caused my body to be tight and tense, because I was emotionally living in fear. I was striving and I felt so very alone. What I later realized was that the tension and stress I was feeling in my body on a daily basis was a sign that I was out of alignment with my heart. As a woman working in the male-dominated field of finance, I was totally out of touch with my feminine essence — the softer side of me.
When I began to travel around the world and deepen my spiritual practices, I started to feel the pulsating energy of the Goddess within. Being in a foreign place allowed me the freedom to release Her. The Divine Feminine recognizes her inner beauty and adorns it on the outside. Her eyes show her confident radiance. She's so aware of the beautiful gift it is to be a woman; the feminine is the creative force of the universe. She's here to remind others to trust in the Divine, and in this way helps to balance the masculine "doing" energy.
A feminine goddess feels connected to something much larger than the individual self trying to make it in the world. She knows the Divine energy and trusts the flow of life. Her most important goal in life is to love and be loved, no matter how successful and powerful she is in the outer world. She is strong and fierce, but in a subtle way. She surrenders to Spirit more than she pushes through. She is in touch with the way her body feels and lets that guide her life decisions.
In these modern times, I believe most women have learned to cultivate more masculine qualities. We've learned that we can make it on our own, that we can be as successful as men in every area, that we can have a family and have a career. Without a doubt, these are all very positive advancements in gender equality.
But for many women, a good deal of our softer qualities have gotten lost in this effort to be independent. These feminine qualities are so very important. Without embracing them, we women are on a long journey of unhappiness. While we can be successful on the outside, if we don't feel open and free, trusting and playful, connected and loved, we will never feel truly fulfilled.
Here are some ways you can start to embrace your feminine essence today:
1. Take a seat in front of a candle, close your eyes, and start to notice your breath.
The breath can be the most sensual way of connecting to your body.
2. Get on the yoga mat and find the balance between strength and surrender, action and softness.
You can find it even there in the most difficult pose. You can also do this in your favorite physical exercise, like running.
3. Make eye contact as you go out in the world and share a smile.
Imagine loving energy radiating from your eyes to the other.
4. Repeat affirmations.
For example: I am the Divine light of love; I am a beautiful, passionate, soulful, spiritual woman; I'm a magnet for abundance; I am here to shine the light of love as a feminine woman.
To practice all of these steps and much more, consider joining me for my Yoga and Feminine Soul Retreat on the pristine beach of Tulum, Mexico this coming November 7-12, 2013. More info here.