Each of us, whether biologically male or female, has a choice about the extent to which they express empowering feminine qualities. Sadly, for many of us, feminine qualities have been derogated. As a result, we have diminished their importance in our lives and even repressed them. This means that we cannot give them full expression, which undermines our ability to reach our potential. We may not even consciously realize that this has occurred. Balanced incorporation of both masculine and feminine qualities is key to full engagement in life.
Consider the following seven empowering feminine qualities, and how they are expressed in your life. Do they enrich your experience or are they showing up with dysfunction?
1) Consort: This quality shows up in the archetypes of the dancer, virgin, or concubine, who emulate beauty for beauties sake. It pertains to decoration, grace, and vulnerability. It is the extent to which you can trust enough to be tender, delicate, and allowing. It is appreciation, a state of being responsive and yielding, as opposed to more masculine qualities of assertion and initiation. In its detriment, innocent appreciation and sharing of beauty is lost and manipulation occurs. When you are sensitive to this exchange, true partnership can be achieved. Continue reading
The Middle Way is about balance, but is not as simple as adjusting weights until they are equal and then you are done. This is because the weights themselves are not constant, so, you need to pay attention to how they shift in quality. In other words, it is less like linear pendulum oscillation, and more like a spinning disc. Fine adjustments allow you to more completely meet your needs and priorities, or to optimize where you concentrate your time.
Your fundamental needs do not change that much. What changes as you move beyond childhood, is the extent to which they are your personal responsibility. We often do not pay them much attention until one is neglected and we feel its absence. As long as a certain level of safe shelter, available resource, community, accomplishment, and inner evolution is occurring, all is well. However, it is easy to see what happens if our environmental temperature becomes hazardous, or if we experience restriction of food or water. What is less obvious is the physiological reaction to solitude and isolation, or to stagnation in achievement, or development of the way we matter. These are all elements of the environment with which we surround ourselves and which may need an overhaul depending on career choices, family commitments, financial pressures, or health issues. It is up to you to find the sweet spot where you experience harmony by choosing what is required and eliminating what is not. Middle Way means bringing attention to where you do and don’t need to go, how you do and don’t need to feel, and what you do and don’t need to think. Continue reading
“Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later.” – Og Mandino
The ‘doing your best’ perspective suggests that we should go all out to squeeze more out of ourselves. Perhaps, this means continually attempting to give 100%, which risks burn out if we do not equally give 100% to recharging our energy!
Is it practical to ‘do our best’ at everything, or even necessary? If we try to ‘do our best’ in every detail of what we do, we fall prey to perfectionism, which makes it really hard to bring something to completion. For example, when chopping vegetables to cook, some unevenness will not affect the flavor. In many cases, more is lost by going for perfection than settling for good enough.
Striving to ‘do your best’ also increases comparison with others and brings judgment of our own presentation. However, if this statement is rephrased to ‘being your best’, our focus shifts from the outcome to the level of engagement and good enough becomes perfect. Check out these three ways to shift from ‘doing your best’ to ‘being your best’. Continue reading