I was thinking about Solange’s album title, “A Seat at the Table” and the work that I am doing with my current clients and one thing that constantly holds people back is the fact that we not only judge parts of ourselves, we also shut them down now allowing them to have space in our lives.
This leads to deeper issues of resentment (of ourselves and others) or even self-hatred.
It causes us to hold back out of fear that we won’t be loved, accepted or appreciated. Oftentimes, we aren’t doing that for ourselves so how can we expect it from anyone else?
This also holds us back from taking the leaps we should take, saying NO when we know we should and ultimately leads us down a path of darkness when our soul truly wants to live in the light.
When I went down that path myself, of full appreciation and acceptance, the world opened up to me...not just in opportunity, but within myself. I felt the flow with the Universe. This sense of trust flows through me now that I’ve never consciously felt before.
I trust that I am being connected to the right people, in the right places at the right time for what I desire in my life and how I want to live out my gifts and expression to help others.
Ultimately, radical acceptance and appreciation for all I am and bring that into my work.
Now, you may be thinking, “That’s awesome Jo-Ná for you, but how the heck do I do it?”
I totally feel you and here’s the answer….
It’s a moment to moment process.
It’s a daily practice.
There’s no magic guru, exercise, book or pill that can bring you there (Even though many of those things can be helpful).
It’s making a decision that all of you deserves to be loved and expressed.
It’s conditioning yourself when you WANT to shut down a part of you, instead, saying no and bringing that part to the forefront for more love.
It’s allowing the little kid inside of you to come along for the ride, but NOT be in the driver’s seat.
It’s a daily surrender and commitment to loving yourself. No matter what while still acknowledging your mis-steps and making amends for them.
It’s in those moments when someone shuts you down or attacks you that you don’t respond by joining in on the “beat up on you” party and instead respond to yourself with love.
It’s being aware of those thoughts that lower your vibration and actively shifting them.
It’s hearing your mother or father’s critical voice in your head and responding to that voice with radical kindness for yourself.
It’s an ever-unfolding journey that takes time but it’s so worth it.
Ultimately, it affects the type of business owner you are, the type of person you are and the joy your life develops (or not).
I recall watching RuPaul on Supersoul Sunday and Oprah asked him, “What is the meaning of life?”
His response, “To live in joy.”
This is what Joseph Campbell said in his famous quote, “Follow your bliss.”
When we do this, we are better, life is better and we are better to each other.
Then internal suffering we have and what we inflict on others as a result of that conditioning would subside. Hot damn.
While we ALL may not have perfect circumstances that allow us to access joy easier than others, you don’t have to. Joy is a state of mind.
It’s what Nelson Mandela said allowed him to get through is horrific imprisonment. The state of joy and peace in his mind.
And we can’t access it if we are in a constant state of self-blame, self-criticism, disapproval and a general malaise about our lives. If we don’t allow all parts of who we are have a seat at the table in our lives and businesses.
This isn’t just about being profitable or being “seen.” It’s about truly living and loving without suffering. Thriving in life, living in joy.
You can’t suffer your way to happiness. So how about we start now with a little appreciation of the miracle that is you and let it snowball into a full out “wholeness” fest?
Now, I’d love to hear from you. In the comments, let me know which part of yourself deserves a little approval and appreciation right now and how you’re going to do that today.
And if you know anyone else who may need this, please send it to them. We all need a little reminder to be a little kinder to ourselves and each other.
With Fierce Love,
P.S. If you missed my workshop this month, so sorry. More to come in the future, stay tuned. And if you’re interested in knowing more about my work you can find that here. Lots of love.