By Tara Kimes
I used to take all my cues on how to gain ‘respect’ from the men around me. How they acted, how they talked, how they told jokes, how they worked and played. How they led.
As a musician I desperately tried to show men that I could play solos and perform like them. I followed male teachers and bandmates’ advice and copied their practice methods…I pounded a piano for four hours a day until the muscles in my back changed and my arms stopped being sore. I let male managers and promoters ‘prepare me’ for LA and instruct me on my ‘image.’ I listened to them compare me to other female musicians, and come up with stage names for me like “Shady Lady,” or tell me excitedly “Ooh you’re gonna be a white Sade, or the next so and so.” I listened to men convincing me to sign contracts, proclaiming they knew somebody big in Nashville, or LA, who was connected to some rockstar. And although I somehow had the inner strength to say no, I still remember how drained I was during those years, how little feminine radiance I had, and how insecure I constantly felt.
As a writer I desperately attempted to write in a blunt, no nonsense voice like male authors. I followed prominent male bloggers, studied how they wrote, and devoured their content so I could write the same way. I started my own blog and wrote around 50 articles. I got great feedback on my new masculine writing style that had cursing, humor, and one or two sentence paragraphs that packed a punch. But still, it was a persona…not my true voice.
As a spiritual seeker I desperately tried to show how detached I could be, and to meditate and suppress emotions like the male monks and spiritual teachers I sat with in satsangs. Those quiet men who seemed to have so much authority and composure. Those perfect-seeming men who women flocked to and gave their power completely over to. Those men who somehow attracted hundreds of followers all too eager to put their financial trust in him and hold space for him to retain this imbalanced power structure which is so often and so easily misleading and exploited.
And now as a solopreneur of my own spiritual biz it’s a relief to say that I’m done being desperate and no longer looking to men for the power. Because surprisingly, that image of me as desperate was a mirage, an illusion. What I truly am is emotionally intelligent, loving, connected, receptive, trusting, and fearless of intimacy. And those things are powerful in their own right.
Women don’t need to prove they can do what’s natural to a man—driving, pushing, penetrating and slaying in terms of numbers and money. Don’t get me wrong, driving full speed toward a goal isn’t bad. But when the system doesn’t value the feminine it drives itself off a cliff! In a patriarchal society the system is rigged yang to begin with, so to add more of the same energy to it actually tips the scale. This imbalance perpetuates a fight or flight, militant way of being and breeds a lack of safety in the body. It makes it ‘the norm’ to check out of your body, and leads to burnout.
Thankfully we can tip the scale the other way by reclaiming the polar opposite energy. We can reclaim the divine feminine–the heart-centered, nurturing, tending and befriending, receptive, and grounding energy. We can start listening to our body. We can begin to welcome in emotions and safety. We can let ourselves receive money through pleasure and connection instead of through burnout and chasing status.
This feminine power is emerging as a new way of relating and expressing in business, and as we enter the New Earth, it’s more likely this will become more mainstream. For instance, coaching is now one of the top industries, second only to tech, and women make up the majority of life coaches. There is now a trend of life coaches saying goodbye to websites and landing pages, and simply using DMs (direct messages) as a channel to gather their clients. These coaches are making upwards of a million dollars via their services simply by using the art of attraction and valuing connection.
In my own work I’m noticing clients continue to be drawn to me when I feel rested and fulfilled. They seem to pop up, not when I’m slaving over my computer, but when I accept help from an assistant, or team up with fellow creatives and stop trying to do it all alone. I’ve noticed I gain followers on social media, not when I force myself to post, but when I take dopamine breaks and let myself write when inspiration comes. Money comes in, not when I’m straining myself to do sessions, but when I’m just tuning in to life and relaxing, trusting my intuition.