Since I began cycle syncing my work schedule, I’ve noticed a whole bunch of benefits.
The way I now work is to coach every second week and spend the alternate week writing/marketing/workshop planning or resting. I sync these non-coaching weeks with my period (when I need to rest for a few days) and during ovulation when my creativity is at its peak. The coaching weeks are reserved for the first and third weeks of my cycle – when I have good amounts of energy and an ability to use both my intuitive and rational sides to help women make sense of and move beyond burnout.
Not only does this approach allow me to ‘tilt’, being mindfully where my feet are and focusing on one thing at once. But scheduling in this way allows me to relax knowing that everything on my to do list is scheduled and accounted for. And I’ll simply get to it when I get to it. Removing that exhausting mental list from my brain has been revolutionary and freed up so much creative energy to channel into other things including in and out of work.
But this approach also has an unexpected benefit of having a week to simply listen to and hold space for my beautiful clients as they navigate their way through life’s trickiness and ickiness … and find the lessons and gifts in the unfolding of it all.
It’s remarkable to me how themes are repeated and revisited between the women I work with – almost eerily so. A meaningful reminder to me that everyone’s life goes in seasons, that there is certainly a collective energy, and we are not so alone in all of this as we may assume.
This last week there has been a pattern in these conversations, a theme that has such resonance for my own life right now I had to share in the hope that it may connect with you too.
The theme has been ‘how to be me’ and has come in the form of various questions and ponderings.
How can I safely express who I am when I fear it’s not loveable?
How can I express my needs without making other people feel uncomfortable?
How can I say no when my boundaries have been trodden on?
How can I move toward what I intuitively feel is good for me?
How can I trust myself?
How can I stop bending to make other people feel good?
How can I be more authentic?
How can I speak my truth?
How can I find connections with people who get me?
Why don’t my family get me?
These questions may seem rhetorical, even philosophical.
But at the heart of these questions lies the biggest fear that we – as women who are seeking growth – have.
The fear that we are not enough.
The fear that is conditioned into us as little girls – who are taught to want to change and fix our bodies, our minds and our emotions.
The fear that is reinforced by working cultures that perpetuate the need to prove oneself to be rewarded.
The fear that we practice overcoming as teenagers – wanting more than anything to fit in and belong and learning to squash our intrinsic expression in favour of acceptance.
The fear that prevents us from sharing our vulnerability and connecting with others from heart-centered space.
The fear that stops us from trying new things and living an alternative life and quitting the job and dumping the partner.
There was a time…. Somewhere in our lives, where we decided to squash the inner voice in favour of being loved.
We noticed that if we just kept ourselves small and quiet and ‘good’, that others would be happy. And so we chose that path, over the path that instinctually felt good.
And at that time, it was compassionate, almost benevolent in its intention.
Except that now, as women, it is holding us prisoner.
Because what happens when we aren’t ourselves is that within us, those whisperings, those instincts, start to try and get our attention.
At first, softly.
And then louder and louder and louder.
Because we need nutrients that we have long since forgotten that we need.
Deep, soul-enriching connection and conversation with others.
Functional, juicy, feminine movement in which we move our bodies in all directions.
Creativity – allowed to burst forth from within us and be expressed in a form that makes sense on that day.
Outward expression of emotion – anger, frustration, disappointment, sadness, grief, joy – emotions that when squashed back inside us cause dis-ease, resentment and stagnation.
Trust – in ourselves and our own body’s language. Trust in the fact that there is something greater guiding us if only we could find the courage to surrender and stop ‘doing’ and ‘proving’ all the time.
And when we DO express – in whatever way FEELS good for us, what we are asking for in our relationships is one simple thing.
LOVE ME FOR WHO I AM.
Not what I do. Or how I make YOU feel.
Love me. See me. Hold me in all my vulnerable, dynamic, unique beauty.
Because let’s face it… being someone else is f*cking exhausting.
The beautiful thing that has unfolded in my life is proof that when we start to honour those whispers, not only do we benefit, but other people do to.
Contrary to what we believe – being loved is not contingent on hiding the parts of yourself you think are unloveable.
The more we are ourselves, the more we are able to receive love. And the more love we will receive.
The more we can find safe spaces to practice being ourselves in – to practice expressing ourselves – the less we are likely to look for approval in inappropriate or unsafe spaces.
The more we can find outlets for emotional, creative and sexual expression – the less likely we are to blow up at our partners or our kids.
The more we can see and accept ourselves, the more can do so for others (which is actually what love is).
And the more that we can BE ourselves – unleashing our unique gifts and traits and qualities into the world without refinement or hiding some parts of ourselves or holding ourselves back – the more the resonance and quality of what you have to offer touches other people.
And the more you can make an impact in a way that doesn’t lead you to burn out.
So what do I think we can do for our wellbeing this week?
Don’t get a massage or go to the spa.
Be you – even if it’s for a moment or an hour or a day. Be unapologetically you in a place where you know you will be seen and received.
And feel the weight lifted from your shoulders and your heart open.
I see you. And I love you.