When it comes down to it, doing the work of Reclaiming Beauty is doing the work of birthing your True Self. And any birthing process requires a tremendous amount of patience and intention to live in alignment with your beauty path.
As I am patiently waiting to give birth to the Reclaiming Beauty Journal & Wisdom Deck, I am constantly aware of the parallel process I am experiencing of the Reclaiming Beauty work itself. In the face of the expected challenges of birthing this project, as well as my own life experiences during this season, I have noticed myself falling into old patterns.
Here’s a snapshot:
During Family Seminar for my work with middle school girls, we were addressing patterns. As a clinical team, we decided to represent patterns that we have worked through by wearing t-shirts of the patterns. I chose “Victim” – proud to share my transformation from victim to Empowered Woman.
Ironically, this week was filled with stress after stress with my life and my project. As a result I was experiencing insomnia, overwhelm, anxiety, mood ups and downs, and very loud voices feeling sorry for myself about being a single mama and having to do it all alone.
On the final day of the seminar, while wearing the “Victim” t-shirt, I arrived with a flat tire. I called for a tow truck. When the driver arrived he told me, “Miss, do you realize you have a spare in your back seat?”
I was horribly embarrassed. I had been waiting with a flat tire for an hour for a tow truck to come and rescue me with a spare tire in the back seat of my car – the whole time wearing a Victim t-shirt! I laughed out loud and shared how this situation really went against my whole Empowered Woman thing. As my mind began to head down the road of self-criticism, a supportive co-worker helped me reframe. He said, “You can be an Empowered Woman and still not know how to change your tire!” Or know it’s in your trunk, I suppose… but I know NOW!
This reframe made the difference in spending an evening in self-compassion rather than self-criticism. I was able to have a sense of humor about the situation, and practice A LOT of self-care that night. With every obstacle I face in the Reclaiming Beauty Journal & Wisdom Deck birthing process, as well as with my own relationship with Self during this precious time, I am asking myself… are you living with Kindness towards your Body, your Mind, and your Soul? It is important to shine a light of awareness to the loud voices of criticism that paralyze our movement forward, and then bring in those actions of Soul Kindness.
Here are some suggestions for SOUL KINDNESS actions steps:
1. SOUL KINDNESS involves noticing the critical thought and bringing in a “YES, and…”
My thought was: “There was a tire in my trunk the whole time which proves I am powerless.” My supportive friend helped reframe the thought in order to recognize the possibility that the situation didn’t negate my truth of being an empowered woman.
2. SOUL KINDNESS involves taking a perspective that invites a sense of humor. Are you able to have a sense of humor about stuck places in your journey to shift from self-criticism to self-compassion?
3. SOUL KINDNESS involves taking self-care actions. When you recognize you are stuck in self-criticism, notice that your Soul is asking for some self-care to move you towards self-compassion.
Join the Reclaiming Beauty conversation! In the comments below, please share an action that supports you in developing SOUL KINDNESS.
An action step for moving into Soul Kindness would be to join me for the Reclaiming Beauty and Freedom Summer Series in July co-led with Taisir El-Souessi of Taisir Expressive Arts. See details below. And stay tuned for the Reclaiming Beauty Journal & Wisdom Deck release date!
Walk in Beauty,
Image: Jill Houser