For the almost 10 years now that I have been a Wellness Practitioner, then a Coach and a Mentor to other Practitioners, I have always aspired to embody and empower as much authenticity and integrity in this world as I could, at the same time as having to co-exist in the business world with the ideal of what i call the White Picket Fence Success Woman, who has it all and the the perfectly manicured social media social proof to match, no matter what industry she works in.
When this personal challenge inevitably has come up for new clients, time and time again, I've told my clients exactly what I believe it's all about. Which is not denying oneself the love and honour we already deserve (from ourselves and others) for exactly who we are right now, while trying to live achieving a set of tick boxes set by someone else that measure your success. But instead i ask them to consider what abundance and prosperity means personally to them. And what their soul has to say about who they're here to be? To me it's not just about the material stuff. Abundance can be a plentiful supply of anything you desire in any aspect of life. Prosperity can be a quantity of such abundance or money to whatever amount suits their individual needs, whatever they are...wether that be to set up a clinic, get a new house, or extra funds to pay for a trip to the hot springs at the end of their coaching program via their business, or to have an abundant inner wellspring of new confidence.
My clients have happily shared and we've celebrated the achievements of all of these goals that were theirs. I want them all to know that they are enough exactly as they are right now. To have realistic and heartfelt goals and ambitions and their own set of self defined check boxes yes. But not, as i have been so prone to, beating oneself mentally to a bloody pulp for failing to BE this version of success or that one. Though in truth, what is REALLY underneath all that in my experience, is the fear of losing someone we love and admire's love and approval. Yet here's the catch 22...it's a little tricky to receive their love and approval or anyone's love and approval, until we've first dared to explore and bare up ALL of who we are and learn to love it, so that others who would love and admire us exactly as we are can actually GET to us...and we can receive what they have to give. My god have I tried my best, in the face of thousands of women (and men) all too ready to line up and shred me for my failures, to balance the demands of white picket success world with authenticity and personal integrity of that intention.
I cried for the love and appreciation placed elsewhere. And then I cried for the part of me that wouldn’t love and accept myself for having failed to become the next level of white picket fence success, in relationship or business. And i cried because i felt so not enough. I’m someone who has been through a lot in life and I am still healing. Forever it feels sometimes like I am still healing. And the pain sometimes to show up for work or for love means having to have that panic attack to purge that old thing first, sometimes it’s meant having to violently spew and shit my guts out with past traumas just to be able to stand in the room with close friends. But i do my best. To some, I am "awesome". And to some, not all, it was still never enough. All i wanted to be able to do was focus on the clients, on the shared purpose. But instead, my head i'd realised this last few years was constantly full of, distracted by this drama of egos trying to prove themselves enough to this person or another. Why?
But then the gold, like i said to you above, I asked me, who am i really doing this for and to be enough for? As for it to work, you have to be pursuing it for the right reasons, for your own deepest motivation and from a place of self love and love for others. If though, it ever becomes soley for the love and approval of the audience (instead of for their wellbeing and empowerment), or for this man or that woman, or that partner or family member, or this Coach, or this Mentor you love and respect's love and approval alone, i believe is not alone the most beneficial, and self honouring motivation. Caring what people think is an asset when it helps us be our best for all of the people in life we need to show up with and whenwe need to be the best we can for our clients.
But then there's an aspect of that which is actually playing out our ego stuff, our need for external validation, our wounded Daddy or Mummy stuff, and the unmet need that grows into for seeking the love and approval of the education system we were brought up to seek the approval of too, but on a far bigger scale. The challenge instead i think is to bring it back and be the ones ourselves to primarily define who we're here to be and if we're enough and living according to our own integrity. Then to fill ourselves so full with our own love that it doesn't matter quite so much who around us does or doesn't love or approve of us. Every opinion but our own is to be considered an opinion we can take or leave. Some people will love and value us as we are. Some wont. Some will be projecting their loving heads off. That's their right. That's life. I feel like i broken record with this lately, but you can choose the wound, or you can be the love. You can choose to love and receive love when you think you're finally white picket fence success enough. Or you can see and love and value the amazing being you are right now....and receive love. And you can get caught up crying over the spilled milk, or you can re-focus on the new set of challenges at hand.
And so i had a little ceremony and thanked the old me for all the old versions of me and all involved had taught me, but said goodbye to all the unrealistic expectations and hopes I and others put each other through. And then called the love in in all its forms....the self love, the love of others and welcomed a new and the more authentic version of me that i am here to be and the world full of people who fit with her, warts and all that i knew would be waiting on the other side when i let this go.
What I am, what I have achieved and created, experienced in the world so far though, the times i lived as Ms White picket fence relationship woman with the the manager man, the house the 2 SUV's and the lifestyle, for the times i have successfully supported, co-created, relief managed and practice managed 100k+ Psychology, Natural Therapies and Coaching Practices and for how many people I have helped find their strengths in their lives and businesses and the flow on of that, I am fucking proud. For the growth i have achieved, i too, am fucking proud. This last year has been a tremendously big lesson in continuing to love and back who I am and what I believe in despite the intense opposition that comes when you declare yourself and you trigger people and they tell you that you need to stop being you and be them and do it their way so that they feel loved and comfortable, especially in the financial gap moments, when their way, their "proven" way, they think is so much more successful.
As well as being a year of great growth and opportunity, it's been a year of saying multiple no's to support that came with conditions and a price in self love and integrity of my values that was too high and so I said no, in favour of saying yes to love and what best honoured all of our growth and empowerment. Even if it meant no food on my table or roof over my head, I said no. It' s been a year of asking what does abundance and prosperity mean to me now instead, beyond the million dollar success paradigm? What new way am i here to help co-create? And how can i create that and be me and help people? And whatever comes, I do it. I get up and look myself in the mirror and love myself and say fuck it, I’ll give it another shot, and I do my best to own my shit and walk my talk and I do it. And for the opportunities that are showing up now to match that, i am so excited and so very grateful to be a part of. As a friend of mine said to me recently, it really is true that life meets you in the most wonderful ways when you put all of beautiful, unique, shiny and wounded you on the table.
Nat talks about Self Expression, Heart Centred Communication and Lifestyle for Leaders.