By Nicola Albini, J.D., M.A. - This article originally appeared on September 11th 2015 on huffingtonpost.com
"The world will be saved by the Western Woman." -- Dalai Lama
I love coaching women. Holding a clean, masculine, loving presence for women to deepen into their empowerment is important to me because when the masculine and feminine energies of the world come into true alignment (within ourselves and between one another), we will see some dramatic upgrades in life on this little planet of ours.
In order to succeed and lead in the current world paradigm, most women have felt they need to be primarily in their masculine energy. There is evidence of this tendency in even the subtlest, most personal aspects of a woman’s life -- like her habit of overriding the flow and rhythms of her own body in order to show up for her worldly demands.
But what if women could stay connected to their feminine essence and be taken seriously as leaders? What transformation could this usher in for all of us, men included? I am excited to find out, and have some ideas about how to get there.
Reverend Michael Beckwith identified a model of the four primary stages of leadership, which the Conscious Leadership Group, founded by Jim Dethmer and Diana Chapman, uses as a guiding principle. In my experience, understanding these stages can greatly empower a woman to both shift into her feminine essence AND show up powerfully in all areas of her life. For our purposes, we will focus solely on the first three stages.
1. Life Is Happening To Me.
Most of us must pass through Stage One before we get to the other stages. Here we find ourselves at the effect of life. Complaining and criticism are common symptoms. We are usually somewhere on the Victim/Villain/Hero triangle, where the villain is in constant blame, the victim feels wronged, and the hero sees others as incompetent or "less than" and swoops in to save the day. This is a very expensive stage, as the tariff is our own, true nature.
The antidotes to Stage One are wonder, curiosity and personal responsibility. In order to shift out of this stage, we can ask ourselves "What do I want from this situation?" Or "What I am learning here?" The moment we become willing to take responsibility for ALL the circumstances of our lives and commit to seeing others in full responsibility of their lives, we are free to move on to Stage Two.
2. Life Is Happening By Me.
This is a very exhilarating stage, because here we experience a sense of control, responsibility and power. Our focus shifts from being perpetually outward into the rich terrain of our internal landscapes. We see ourselves co-creating with life. Both hands are on the steering wheel.
This can be a very empowering stage. We feel a sense of control like never before. But, as life teaches us again and again...control is an illusion. And once we get current with that fact, we can move on to Stage Three.
3. Life Is Happening Through Me.
Here is where the real magic starts to happen. The big difference between stages two and three is that we have moved from a sense of control (a masculine principle) to a deep sense of surrender (a very feminine principle).
When we are in Stage Three, we are fueled by wonder. A common question we ask ourselves is: "What wants to happen through me?" We commit to maximizing our energy by honoring rest and renewal; we commit to creating a life of play and to seeing all of life unfold with ease. Stage Three is where the feminine principle comes to life, and it vibrates at a much higher frequency than most of us are used to.
Stage Three is where a woman can rest into herself and trust the cues her body gives her for clarity on where to go and what to do next. She can cite her innate creativity and intuition as main contributors to her success. She can commit to something big without the fear of losing too much of herself along the way.
Be Aware of Shift & Drift
Once we commit to shifting into Stages Two and Three, it's very normal to drift back into our old ways once in awhile. You'll know this is happening if you find yourself complaining, criticizing, or refusing to delegate because you don’t want to impose.
The key to shifting out of this pattern is to accept where we are, take some conscious breaths, change our posture, and ask the direct questions, "What am I learning from this? What is my role here?" "What do I want to create next?" And "How do I surrender and let go?"
Certainly there are women in the coaching world who hold a clean, feminine, loving presence for men to find balance between their masculine energies too. These principles would, undoubtedly, be of service from this perspective as well, as who amongst us couldn’t use a little finesse in the art of surrender?
In this spirit, I’ve got some exciting news! Beginning August 27th, I’m kicking off a six-month course just for women called The Empowerment Shift. This coaching program is for women who are ready to call in and manifest all that they want in life.
To learn more visit www.theempowermentshift.com, and if you know a woman who is ready for deep transformation and wants some expert, loving support in navigating her journey, please send her a link to this post.