The 11 ways I killed my power and felt like I was dying inside (and the 5 killer realisations I came to that turned everything around)
Today's blog is about the 11 ways I killed my power and felt like I was dying inside (and the 5 killer realisations I came to that will help you turn everything around).
I was unhappy, frustrated and felt like I was banging my head against a brick wall for as long as I could remember. I knew I was born for a huge mission and purpose, and big impact, and yet, I couldn’t find a way to let my brilliance shine.
I want to share the 11 (extremely costly) ways I was killing my power, brilliance and choosing not to shine. I was literally strangling my life, my happiness and my impact alive. Have these ever happened to you? Can you relate?
1. I stayed really busy trying to figure everything out.
2. I resolutely believed that the "magic answers" to fix my life were in the hands of someone else. If I just looked hard enough, and fast enough, I would find my answers to “fix myself/life” (and then I could finally be happy).
3. I did everything in my power to suppress my own knowing and my own voice, for example,
* I stayed super busy and on the move trying to find the newest shiny object (just check out the trips I took in the last 10 years here),
* I put myself under dominating teachers and mentors who kept me small (and a follower, and not the leader I was born to be),
* I set myself up in business in the least visible and accessible way possible,
* I qualified and practised as a lawyer where the rules are mostly known and if they're not, you argue your case based on analogous case law (eg other people's arguments) (there’s no need for my voice and knowingness in that arena - or any need for my originality and creativity either).
4. I repeatedly picked men who were unavailable to me so that I could have it drummed into me non-stop that "I didn't have it" and that I was missing the magic answer as a woman.
5. I didn't move abroad to the sunshine when I repeatedly got the calling to do so in my 20s because I couldn't light the fire under my being that being in immense heat creates - I get hot and ready to boil over, my temper would kick in and I had to stay quiet. It wasn’t ok to express anger or be passionate and engaged by life publicly.
6. I kept my body "less than" I would love it to be to detract attention from my presence and feminine charms to compete in a masculine world.
7. I have delayed having children to not "force me" to step up and get my act together.
8. I gossiped and colluded with peers/colleagues so I could get "fuel"/ammunition for my theories, making me "right" and validated without risking anything by sticking my neck out and making a public stand for what I believed.
9. I put my energy into bitching and moaning about all that I hated and all that did not suit me e.g. being English, living in England and working as a lawyer. I rebelled against my "prison" of a life as a substitute for doing anything about it. Rebelling against my life was as far as I would allow myself to experience my freedom. (I'm half-English and half-Spanish and I never felt like I belonged in very reserved England.)
10. I hated myself and all that I have been, making myself stupid, naive and lacking for not having all of "life's answers" and believing unconsciously that I deserved misery. I stopped myself from being grateful and feeling reverence and allowing in all the abundance I would love.
11. I made success contingent on nailing someone else's model of the world and being the best I could be at that in order to avoid my feelings of inadequacies and strong sense of "no internal and inherent value" to be in the world.
Phew. Intense? Ugly? Yes. But that was my world.
And then I had a shift in perspective. What if there was a lesson in all of this? What if I trusted the bigger perspective of my life, what did I get to see/own/be as a result of all that I had experienced and suffered?
I'm sharing my realisations in the hope they'll be of benefit to you too.
1. I cannot excel in a life that is not meant for me
I learnt very clearly that looking outside to others wasn't the answer to my happiness, success and unleashing my brilliance in the world as a woman. I learnt plenty of things that in of themselves would have made me financially abundant e.g. being a multi-six figure earning corporate lawyer and studying property investment intensely to build a financially free lifestyle… but I couldn't do those things my whole life.
I learnt that I had to do what is unique to me (oh the irony with all that searching outside) or else I suffer. I can't just "make do". I must express and live my greatest joy, or else I suffer.
There's no in between!
2. There is no manual for living a “good life”
In all the being busy and looking outside for knowledge and validation, I assumed I was incomplete and lacking in a lot of "answers to life". I actually spent my early personal development years gathering information to write the "manual for living a good life". That was my first book idea.
What I learnt is there is no manual and no one size fits all approach to living a “good life”. It’s actually very simple. I have to do and be what I cannot NOT have in my life. It’s stronger than “what I would love”. I must do and be what I personally, unique to me, must have in my life. I must be the woman I alone was born to be.
I must be the most aligned and authentic and truest version of me that I was born to experience or I will suffer tremendously – in my body (I’ll save the riding accidents for another time), finances, relationships and in basically every area that matters. And more than that, I will not even enjoy what I love e.g. horses, unless my alignment is embodied in my life. (I share elsewhere how unhappy I was living a multi-6 figure, international travel filled, polo playing lifestyle. My soul was crying for more, and no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't "get happy" in that world, even though to others I had everything anyone could possibly want.)
3. There is no knight on a white horse coming to save me
This is a deep admission. No one would ever guess from the outside, from all my competency and energy I poured into my life that this is what I was secretly hoping was going to happen. Because let’s get honest. Life gets hard. We get lost. It doesn’t turn out the way we thought it “should” and then someone sorting it out for you seems mildly appealing!
It must be the "Rapunzel being rescued from the tower" stories we grew up with.
I’d had intuitive readings in the past like “this lifetime you want to experience your power as a woman”. Ok, so that’s helpful-ISH. But I smiled to myself as I looked at the circumstances of my life. All this drive, all this desire for big things, life not working out as I was expecting it and time was a ticking, what was I supposed to do?
I couldn’t quit. “Not an option” were always the words I heard. No guru had the answers. Shit. I thought, I have been left with no choice. I am literally going to have to create this life for myself or die trying. So I got quiet, I learnt to listen deeply and began to create and embody MY soul’s path to end the road to my suffering. And I realised. This is the lifetime to make my impact. As an empowered woman. With no knight on a white horse to save me.
4. My head leads me down a life path that feels empty
My head leads me down a path to "success" that feels empty. EMPTY is what characterises everything. There is no joy for me in life unless my soul's expression is realised. My path to date has shown me I have no choice. I did that as a corporate attorney and my brief dalliance in the world of property investment. And that’s what I experienced with the first iteration of my own business.
My knowingness is everything. To know for me what is meant for me is everything. It’s the most powerful GPS for life that I have ever experienced. It’s been quite a while since I’ve even attempted to make rationale mental decisions about my life. My head leads me down a path that feels empty, always. If you relate to what I'm saying, this will be the same for you too. It screams making choices NOT based on your happiness or what you really want in life, but on an unconscious desire for outside validation and safety.)
The second danger I learnt to look out for is “sort of” listening to my own knowingness. That’s what happened with the first iteration of my own business. I created something that was boring and invisible. So when I checked in with my business visions, I thought, how the heck did I go down the path I went??
I told myself I would build that platform first (read reliable, known, easy to make money in my perception) AND THEN I’ll go for the bigger picture. It was a painful detour!
But… what did it cement? That I really have to listen deeply to myself and follow what is meant for me, not what feels safe, easy, accessible and available now. Because guess what. If I make that choice now, I’ll keep making those choices for the rest of my life. And then I’d get to the end of my life and think, what was it all for?
And that’s not the path I choose for myself, no way.
I will not get to the end of my life with the regret that I wish I had had the courage to live a life that was true to me.
5. My fiercest leadership lets my people know they’re in the “right place”
The more I suppressed my brilliance, the more men left and life’s great bounty alluded me. The more I own, embody and honour my divine magnificence as the fierce feminine powerful woman I am, the more the world flocks to me. The IRONY of staying out of the sunshine to keep my fire under wraps, the irony of hiding out as an invisible leader and the irony of trying to compete in the world with men.
Burnout, loneliness, betrayal, dissatisfaction and a feeling of icky-ness, there has to be more than this!?
My fire is my light. My wild woman, queen energy, that is the truth of me and it’s magnetic. My fierce voice and ownership of who I am, that makes my life show up for me. To repeat, they are the things that make MY LIFE show up FOR ME. And with it, a peace in my heart that I am living a life meant for me. And joy. And freedom. And most importantly, there’s an enjoyment of the ride.
Let's do one more killer realisation for luck, hey.
6. Life is about TWO things and two things only – the emotions we’re choosing to experience and the challenges we’re up for surmounting
This one is a real focuser.
I was choosing success. I was choosing achievement. For no reason other than the assumption that when I had those things, then I would be happy. That’s how you got happy, right?
You know the drill. The success felt good for minutes, maybe even hours or days, and then what? Emptiness. I thought it would come with more.
I then learnt that really, life is about how you feel in any given moment. There really is no destination (other than death and even that is not a destination really). It’s the nature of the human spirit – we “arrive” and then we want to grow again (not all people, but for you and me, that’s what we experience).
My core values are love, joy, growth, adventure, radical authenticity, abundance and freedom. You’ll notice each have an emotional component. The way in which I’ve since focused on creating my life is around experiencing those core emotions. My drive is there, my desire to create big things is there, BUT this comes from a place of true passion and desire, and not from a place of I’m not enough, let me try and make myself “complete” and “whole” so you can love me. (That's how your mind is working under the surface. Creating your life like that will always turn you into a workaholic, leaving your experiencing burnout and emptiness.)
Because it’s the "I'm not good enough" that is mostly responsible for that empty and “what is missing?” experience we know so well. It's that perception of yourself that causes you to chase success that is not about your heart and loves, but about getting approval so you feel like you have value in the world.
Then there’s the challenges. I am up for the challenge of building a global movement of empowered leader women who are going after their brilliance, leadership, loves and the “good life” on their terms. And I’m up for creating a life with a man who comes from the other side of the world to where I’m from. Both are challenging and both are the most rewarding endeavours I’ve ever been involved with.
That's me. Now over to you.
Some questions for you.
In the comments below let us know:
1. What are the ways in which you’ve resisted your brilliance? How are you suffering right now as a result? What lessons and realisations have you come to about yourself in reading this? I’d love to hear from you.
2. What about the emotions you’re choosing and the challenges you’re up for experiencing in this lifetime? How are you committed to making THIS lifetime count?
Find out in this short quiz, so you can leverage your skills, quit hiding and step into your true leadership role as a woman. You're going to really want to know this information about yourself if you're wanting to live a life as the powerful, happy and loved woman you were born to be!