Dare to Own Your Potency

The Sea-Horse Effect

Many of us are craving the ability to be fully authentic, to be real, to be seen and loved as who we truly are. We are collectively longing to have a visceral experience of our true creativity, power and beauty, undiluted and unmitigated  by the limiting structures of the wider culture. Each of us holds the potential to bring our original selves forth into a way that transforms our world. The time is ripe for whatever you want to bring forward.

Will you come forward? 

Whatever external permission you are waiting for is not coming.  The only permission that can liberate you is your own.

Potency is embodying your indisputable value and giftedness.

Poppy Field

We are out of integrity when we discount and devalue ourselves. It’s time to finally dump the idea that self-diminishment is noble. The biggest gift we can give others is the example of our own lives working, stepping forward in our power and being who we truly are without apology, without shame, but with a sense of inner blessedness and celebration.

Potency is the flower of legitimacy. Claim your legitimacy and right to take up space. 

We can’t embody our potency if we don’t first feel truly legitimate. No one and nothing from the outside can confer the feeling of legitimacy that we crave, yet this is the foundation for everything else.

Legitimacy is the sense of basic worthiness and goodness. The time for developing that was when we were small children and our mother conferred to us a sense of legitimacy through her own felt sense of belonging in the world. If she did not feel she belonged, our basic sense of legitimacy and value was compromised. We cannot go back in time and get this sense of legitimacy; we can only mourn that lost opportunity and create for ourselves the inner legitimacy we crave.

Portrait of Madame Redon

Because our mothers grew up in patriarchal cultures, we each have a sense of being lost to some degree. And while it feels like a wound, once it is embraced, it actually transforms into a gift–leading us to the depth and authenticity that we crave; the feeling of legitimacy that we long for.

I think it’s no accident that the story goes that Jesus Christ was an “illegitimate child.”  I think the truth it points to is that we all start to some degree with a feeling of being illegitimate, i.e., not good enough, bad, wrong, defected, etc. One could even say that that is the basic human wound–feeling illegitimate and somehow bad or wrong.

Feeling illegitimate ignites the search for the true legitimacy of our Being and ultimately, the potency to carry our purpose forth in the world!

Swan Lake

Legitimacy is the right to be, the right to flourish and act as an entity with agency and power. Despite cultural messages that tell us otherwise, we are each legitimate by the fact that we exist, that we are. Life itself has given us legitimacy by the fact that we were born. We feel this more and more as we remove the layers of limiting beliefs and traumatic residues that cover our essence.

Our essence, our spirit-self is that spark of potency. The more we trust it, the brighter it shines through our human form, the clearer its guidance becomes and the greater the transformation we offer to those around us, by virtue of vibrating with our potency.

The solidity of the felt-sense of legitimacy forms a kind of container to hold that spark of potency within. The container of legitimacy supports our potency and allows it to flourish. One could even say that your basic sense of legitimacy is the human container for the potency of your God/Goddess-Self.

Owning your potency is the undefended courage to live and embody the undiluted truth of your Being, no matter the cost. 

The Scent of Tenderness

Owning your potency is living as essence, beyond the personal ego. It is surrendering to your deepest truth and trusting wherever it leads you, even if your mind thinks it should look different. It takes guts and fortitude to do this. Are you willing?

Ultimately, it’s about dismantling the inner walls that form the individual ego-self that feels it has to defend itself against life. When these walls come down, your personal will merges with the divine will like a stream meeting the ocean. Suddenly, there is a power living within you that provides incredible energy, support and inspiration. You are no longer a single wave in the ocean, you are the ocean itself.

What is standing in the way of you living in alignment with what you know is true for you? What is that costing you?

We have to look at how we’ve been brainwashed into self-flaggellation and reclaim our life force by choosing new thoughts and beliefs that accurately reflect and articulate what we know is true. Many women hit a ceiling right before a major breakthrough. We tend to first look for external permission to thrive, to succeed, to excel. Patriarchy has gaslighted women into believing in our lack of value or power. The legacy is long and the beliefs deeply entrenched. Our mothers and grandmothers had no choice but to believe and pass those beliefs down to us. We have to legitimize ourselves in ways our mothers could not. There’s no other way. As the saying goes, we are the ones we’ve been waiting for.

Don’t seek permission. Soar. 

Oh Louise

There is no excuse not to follow your dreams.  Now is the time. Don’t underestimate the effects of simply making a powerful decision to do so. Trust that whatever follows this decision will be exactly what is needed to bring it about. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. Nothing compares to the bliss of living from the depths of your Being.

© Bethany Webster 2013

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All images featured in this post are by Lyse of Imagine Studio. You can find her work here on Etsy. In order of appearance: The Sea-Horse Effect, Poppy Fields, Portrait of Madame Redon, Swan Lake, The Scent of Tenderness, Oh Louise.

Does this article resonate with you?  Sign up here for a free 30-minute “Healing the Mother Wound Clarity Session” with Bethany to learn about her private coaching on healing the mother wound. 

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Don’t Rush into Premature Forgiveness

%22All-embracing%22 - Artist - Heidi Vaught -

We have to accept the legitimacy of our pain before it can be fully transformed.

In order for forgiveness to be authentic, we have to acknowledge the reality of the transgression that occurred and the legitimacy of our resultant anger.  Depending on the level of conflict, it can take a while. We give away our power when we dismiss the intensity of our anger or don’t take the time to really unpack what is beneath it.

Forgiveness of self and other is the ultimate liberator–but only if it is  the byproduct of an authentic transformation. 

It can’t really be faked. You can tell by listening to your body–there will still be a tension, even if your mind is saying “I forgive.”

Authentic forgiveness is the end result of a process, not a knee-jerk response because someone apologizes and says ‘I’m Sorry.” It’s common for women to feel pressure to forgive out of guilt and because others think we “should” forgive.

Owning your anger is a form of owning your worth.

moon child by aatmagaialive

Take the time you need to understand what the anger is really about. Allow anger to energize you in your quest for what is right and true for you. Ultimately, it’s not really about the other person who made you angry, it’s about utilizing the situation to discover  a deeper level of insight and truth within yourself.

Waiting until you are genuinely ready to forgive is a way of resting in your power and integrity.

One of the most empowering things I’ve ever done is allowed myself to process my anger with an open-ended timeline while in the midst of a major conflict. While the other person was pressuring me to forgive and forget,  I respectfully said that I needed to take time and space to fully process my feelings.

Forgiveness was the natural result of processing my pain all the way through until nothing was left but love–love for the other person, love for myself, love for Life. By taking the time to bring awareness to the complex feelings under the anger, the conflict had served its purpose to deliver me to a deeper level of intimacy with Life. Even though the relationship did not continue, I was able to leave it with love. If I had forgiven prematurely before I was ready, the forgiveness would have been superficial and the deep transformation would have been bypassed.

“There is only one perpetrator of evil on the planet: human unconsciousness. That realization is true forgiveness. With forgiveness, your victim identity dissolves, and your true power emerges–the power of Presence. Instead of blaming the darkness, you bring in the light.”

~Eckhart Tolle

Minerva - Auguste Rodin

Don’t rush into premature forgiveness. 

In one of his poems, Hafiz advises the reader “Do not surrender your grief so quickly. Let it cut more deeply. Let it season you the way few human or divine ingredients can.” I would say the same about anger. Let anger ripen your soul’s truth. Let anger stoke the fire of power in your belly and the wild purity of your heart. When approached with awareness and respect, the energy of anger can be very cleansing and put things into a clearer perspective. It can arouse a deeper commitment to love more fiercely and to surrender more completely to what you know to be true.

When fully felt without a particular narrative or story, anger has a purity to it that is a straight-line into truth.

Harness anger for its gifts. 

Eve by Lucien Levy-Dhurmer

When conflict is approached with the attitude that it holds the opportunity for transformation we don’t feel the pressure to rush into forgiveness. We can let ourselves marinate in the in-between space between anger and forgiveness where a deeper truth can be revealed–potentially a deeper truth that can change your life.

Feeling like a victim, feeling helpless and in despair are completely valid, temporary feelings in the cycle of wounding and healing. Just don’t get stuck there–let it continue to move through you so that it can ultimately transport you to wisdom.

Rage is a powerful emotion and needs to be processed in a safe, supportive environment. Finding a safe place to process our anger and rage is an important form of self-care.

You are worth the time it takes to process your pain. 

Imagine all the women of the world tapping into their anger and using that powerful energy in a way that liberates everyone, a way that gets to the deeper truth in the heart of all people that is waiting to be summoned forth in a larger way.

We are powerful, divine beings. Sometimes our power can take the form of anger. This anger that can be used as a force for good, a force for truth. This is  the power of Kali, the embodiment of the destructive power that clears the way for new life.

Anger is our body’s way of saying “Something in my life needs to change in order for me to fully live.”

%22An Indian woman floating lamps on a river%22 by William Daniell

The feminine wisdom available in our anger is needed right now in the world. And it’s part of the reason women’s voices have been silenced for so long. It’s time to claim the right to be angry and to own the legitimacy of our anger in ways that model a new level of integrity and self-love to the collective communities we are a part of.

  • Are there any old resentments in your life that need to be acknowledged?
  • How can you work with your anger to empower your growth and transformation?
  • What in your life needs to end so that you can live a fuller, more authentic life?

© Bethany Webster 2013

Thank you for reading! I invite you to leave a comment below. What has been your experience with anger and premature forgiveness? 

(Art credits: All-embracing by Heidi Vaught, Minerva by Auguste Rodin, Eve by Lucien Levy-Dhurmer, An Indian Woman Floating Lamps on a River by William Daniell)

Does this article resonate with you?  Sign up here for a free 30-minute “Healing the Mother Wound Clarity Session” with Bethany to learn about her private coaching on healing the mother wound. 

Ways to work with Bethany: 

Click here to download my FREE e-book on “Transforming the Inner Mother” and sign up for my newsletter.