Sacred Anger

Feeling too much? Like your nerve endings are on the outside of your body and the slightest sensation or incoming news can ignite or trigger or send you into an emotional spiral?

I am with you.

One client recently called it feeling the “collective rawness.” Yes, collective internally and as a global society.. 

And with no break since March, it’s been quite an onslaught. 

The chronic news of Black people being killed by the hands of law enforcement (over and over) is one thing. Add the pandemic and all of its societal changes and fears and mixed news from science and conspiracy theories, another. Add to that the political craziness and hate-mongering and divisiveness AND the continual destructive storms, wildfires, hurricanes, and tornadoes, and we are tired. 

Cognitive exhaustion, physical exhaustion, emotional exhaustion, and even spiritual exhaustion are all real.

Our lives are not the same as before March of this year, and we wonder when, if ever, we will resume something that feels “normal.” Our minds are searching for some way to “solve” these problems or our hearts want someone else to “save” us from this mess.

Steven Covey wrote years ago in the Seven Habits of Highly Successful People, that it is never a good idea to try to teach or learn when we are tired or emotionally upset. 

Guess what? Most of us are both. 

And, I’m here to say that Anger is our invitation to create, innovate, move us out of the stuckness and towards what’s emerging. It’s a doorway. How?

Anger has gotten a bad rap. Especially for women. We aren’t shown, for the most part,  models of what it looks like to be an angry woman, on purpose, who is still loving and guided by Spirit.

That’s because we haven’t had many. Neither Mother Theresa, who bore her pain silently and alone, or feminists who came across as anti-men and angry. Not the working mother who is worried about her children while taking care of her community and planet and Self (not in that order) while holding down a job. Not women who have chosen not to have children (for their own reasons, because they have a choice) while marching or actively supporting Earth, Gender and Sexual Equality, Racial Justice and healthcare access for our marginalized citizens, nor for those who quietly go about their day-to-day, signing petitions, learning about their role in racism, finding ways to discuss and grow as conscious individuals while making a difference in their own circles by choosing Love over discrimination or hate.

So many ways to be activists. Even by choosing the food we eat, and how we spend our money. 

AND, it starts by being Angry. Allowing the fire in the belly to be stronger than the fear of staying silent, standing by, or choosing the status quo for comfort’s sake.

Anger is the beginning of a spiral of emotions and truly helps us become innovators and creators and impactful leaders (and activists). 

Years ago, a wise teacher and friend helped me learn about my emotions in this way. Begin by choosing a specific issue that is troubling, that you hate, or that made you angry.

Allow yourself to feel the emotion, speak out loud about it, write it, dance it. 

It tends to fade after some focused attention.

Below is something different. Sadness, grief, or fear. Each could come in their own wave.

By asking ”What about this makes me feel sad?” we can get deeper. Feeling the sadness, the grief may be, and letting it be expressed (again through writing, dancing, speaking/crying out loud) allows it to be expressed, felt, and transformed.

Next is probably fear. “What am I afraid of?” Asking over and over till you start feeling the fear, start knowing its source, and focusing on it, even for a few minutes. Sharing out loud to a trusted friend, who is only observing with compassion, not speaking at all, can be cathartic. Letting it out through words, written or prayed, screamed, or softly whispered brings light to the shadow and gets some space around it.

“What do I want/need?” is next. What do I really want to change this? What do I need? It may be that you want the political divisiveness to end, but stay with what’s under your control. What is it that I want to feel instead of this? Expressing it through dance, writing, drawing, imagining then sharing it in some way with the Universe/God/Source is very beneficial.

Then we get to Forgiveness. What can I forgive myself or another for? Again, expressing it orally, through another format is your choice, but put it OUT THERE.

Appreciation/Gratitude is what follows. Express it. To yourself first, then to another if need be and you are called to.

Last is LOVE. It’s the natural progression of following our emotions down to their Source. Our essence is LOVE and when we fall away, step too far from it, feel disconnected, the other emotions are there to help guide us HOME. 

Let’s not fear Anger. It’s sacred and needed. The more we try NOT to be angry, the more we can make ourselves sick. It’s like trying to imagine we can shake a can of soda or sparkling water and then open it and it won’t make a mess. The anger WILL explode one way or another unless we guide it back Home. Back to Love. 

Want a safe space to do this process? I’m here.

What You Think of Me Is None of My Business

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Thanks, I’ve got this.

No really, I do!

You see, what YOU think of ME, is none of my business.

I read that book. About 40 years ago, in fact. Here’s a link, if you’re curious.

https://g.co/kgs/AwyKjP

It had a profound effect on me then, and it still does.

Yet, I forget. I worry about what to write and how to write it and how to show up in what clothes and what people think and the feedback I get (even if it is good!)

How can we get OVER ourselves? Follow our own guidance and trust when it’s time to ask for guidance from others. There is a huge difference.

I’d like to tell you a story about how other’s were concerned about me 10 years ago and how I switched it back and took back my power – and it was magical!

I was divorced, running out of money and networking all over town to find the perfect job that would utilize my talents, give me the flexibility to be Mom to my middle-school-aged daughters and pay me enough for my household expenses as I was not receiving child support.

A dear friend and my mother both shared with me they were concerned (afraid, actually) for me and worried about when I was going to find a job. I assured them both, calmly and assertively, that I wanted only their confidence in me and to imagine me happily working and paying my bills. They both agreed and within the next month or so, not one but TWO contracts for my consulting work were signed!

So, let’s get back IN-to our own self, stop minding others’ business and ask politely that they not get into ours unless invited.

©2018 https://deborahleeann.com Authentic Leadership Academy & Consulting

Wake Up White Women

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What to say?

What to do?

How to be with People of Color?

I’m stuck. Truly. For one who is rarely short on words, I’m a bag of emotions.

And, not sure if I want to blame it on the mixed messages of our country’s leaders or Mercury Retrograde or centuries of history where white privilege has been the norm or the fact that my antennae are hyper focused on receiving messages that are beyond and out of alignment with what I see with my eyes…

Whiteness. White privilege. White women. White culture. We are so IN in, it’s hard to imagine NOT being in it. Yet we share this world, this country, our communities, our neighborhoods, sometimes even our families with those who do not identify as white.

Waking up is painful. It’s easier to go back to sleep. Yet, we can’t sleep this nightmare away. It’s our responsibility to at least acknowledge this isn’t right. It can’t continue. I disagree. This feels wrong.

And I am not just talking about the horrific events last weekend and the lack of accountability by our top government officials to denounce it in a way, apologize in a way, unify in a way, that I had hoped he would.

I am speaking of all ways. Always. Speaking up. Standing up. Moving beyond our fear. Showing up. Not agreeing. Or, not standing by in silence.

No more hiding. Leaders do not hide. They do their work. They SHINE their most brilliantly when the times get dark.

And, I’m learning, that SHINING is not always easy. Or pretty!

Listen in and let me know what resonates. What doesn’t? It’s time to practice opening up and sharing in a more vulnerable way. I’d love to witness that from you.

More info on SHINE Principle at https://deborahleeann.com/Shine

Join the SHINE Challenge on FB here: http://bit.ly/ShineFBChallenge

Til our next time together, SHINE your light with love, compassion, and authenticity!

Conscious Creator or Reactive Victim

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When seeing how I was allowing myself to get W A Y off-track today, I noticed that my thoughts were on a downward spiral.

And, after such a good morning!

Meditating, quiet time contemplating how to create my day, a great session with my shaman/business coach, some delicious coffee, and some creating of new connections for new business through a referral service..then BAM!

What I learned was that each of these “referrals” was costing me. Not even if they were qualified or for a $10,000 project, but even for single or short term $500 coaching package.

Ahhh, so this is the cost of being “in flow?”

Or, is it my resistance to being open to really having it come to me with grace and ease?

And, then the inner critic. The “I told you so!” The “you knew there would be a cost associated, didn’t you?” And on and on. Down the slippery slope of shame, doubt, confusion, until I hit victim. This is where I walk around, looking for something to eat, activities to distract, and ways to numb.

I really dislike feeling yucky like that anymore. And I am beginning to become aware of it earlier and earlier.

So, what to do now?

Focus.

Inward and downward. Remembering this is all temporary, and a result of where I WAS, not where I’m going.

Clarity emerges. Bit by bit. With each breath. I am in Creative space. Bye-bye Reactive Self. I’m back in the driver’s seat. And, from here, the words flow.

Momentum is like being in a canoe floating down stream. It’s easy. It feels good. The scenery changes and I get to see what is around me.

So unlike fighting against the current. Where all my attention is on pushing and striving.

Back in Flow. Back to Creating my Life.

More will be shared in the podcast, I’m sure. Listen in?

Share with me, where do you get stuck? What are your practices for turning yourSelf around?

Authentic Anger

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned…

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Authentic anger, especially for women, looks very different than a lot of we’ve been seeing, or what we’ve been taught, or what . AND, It’s true that women have a millennia or two worth of of actions and historical events and current events to be angry about.

I am and the perfect example. It was the first emotion available in my palette that allowed me to really feel and to tap into what was mine. My truth. My Authenticity. My Essence.

For that reason I think once opened to it, women tend use it as it as a weapon. As way of showing how strong and powerful we are.

A woman’s anger (picture the power of mother Earth’s storms!) is a lashing out, a destructive force. It’s a force you can’t deny. And, it’s often quick and swift. It’s a balancing of energy. It’s about standing strong in our essence, in our conviction and passion, declaring our truth.

It’s not a lot of words. It’s not a lot about the hurting of another. It’s not making the other pay or share in what’s our’s. It’s not about making a point by tearing down the other’s ego – be it physically, emotionally, spiritually.

It’s sad that we have not learned the teachings of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Gandhi around nonviolent conflict, peaceful protesting and working together TOWARDS an end, versus FIGHTING AGAINST the other. There’s a way of making a point with clarity and courageous conviction, sometimes even more so without words.

This reminds me of the Compassionate Samurai. A samurai warrior is trained in all of the martial arts and trains his body to be strong and powerful and also to open his heart. Open his/her mind in a way of serving for all. It’s it’s about dropping our ego, standing tall for the collective.

This is where a woman’s anger can be very affective. When we are fighting for our child or for the rights of all women, or a beloved, we do so in a forward thinking type of way. We want to create change that leads us towards where. We. Want. To. Go. (versus fighting back at what has happened)

This has to be a changed in our mindset. We can change our belief system to learn that what has happened has been the catalyst that turned on this emotion and power and sharpens our senses, and from there, discern how we will move or take action or respond in a way that generates momentum to build what we want.

Join me as we transform our Authentic Anger into the energy that spurs us as compassionate leaders, heard and seen as powerful, strategic, grounded and leading towards change.