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Sacred Circle of Support

February 14, 2014
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th_Lindsay Pera _ fave-5238“I’ll do it MY-Self”

How many of us can see in our mind’s eye a fierce and (striving to be) independant toddler declaring his or her freedom and beginning to try to exert control over their world by stamping their foot and exclaiming

“I do it MY-Self!”

The sad thing is – how many of us, years later, and well into our mature adulthood are still trying to do it all ourselves.

What are we resisting against? (that we are vulnerable and imperfect?)

What are we trying to prove? (that we are independant and can do it ALL?)

Now hold that up alongside the lens of the frenetic and frankly STRESSED-out times we live in.

Is it possible we’ve lost the fine art of asking for help?

Is it possible to reclaim balance and find more peace in our day to day lives just by letting down our guard and finding ways to ask for help?

“Asking for help” is one of the first topics I work on with my private clients – because it is literally an area where ALL of us struggle.

When my third child was born and everything fell apart around me I was stunned, sick and confused and STILL didn’t know how to ask for help.  I couldn’t take care of myself and could barely take care of my baby and older kids (the household? – forget about it!) I needed help, and LOTS of it but had NO idea what that would look like or where to start.

I remember the day when my friend Marie called to say she was sending a young lady over to my house that she had met at a community event.  I was resistant, to say the least.

“What will she do?  I don’t have the energy to figure out how to keep her busy….to show her what needs to be done….to….to….”

I protested and flailed and withdrew and felt like a failure – right until that bright, sparkly girl (with energy and optimism to spare) showed up in my living room and looked at the sight of me and said – “let’s just start with a cup of tea.”

That young lady became a dear friend, a mentor to my kids, an indispensible member of our family – and all I had to do was not say…. “no.” All I had to do was to say “thank you,” and then allow and receive. But wow, was that edgy.

I recognize it’s not always that easy. I recognize that miracle help doesn’t always just land on our doorsteps.  But I do think it is time to remove the stigma of raising our hands to say we need help.  I do think it is time to start practicing this skill – and  modeling it for ourselves and those around us (especially our kids!).

Sometimes asking for help is the ultimate first step of self-care and love.   It can be the ultimate first step in stopping the bleeding – and finding a way out of the stress and overwhelm.  It can be the first step in taking care of you.

I recently had the immense pleasure of interviewing THE most inspiring self-care mentor who is leading a movement to restore self-care to our list of personal non-negotiables.  Elena Lipson is a wellspring of love, compassion and she seriously walks her talk.  She shares:

“How I wake up and treat my body is JUST as important to my health and even my business as the food I eat, my business plan or my marketing strategy – probably MORE important.”

Elena works with women (mostly moms and entrepreneurs) who are awakening to the need and importance of balance and self-care.  Elena guides them to recognize that they are their own most valuable asset, and guides them to find ways to prioritize themselves first – and to learn how to ask for help when it’s needed.  I hope you will listen to our Shift Series interview HERE for tips about how to bring self-care back into your health (and even business!) routine.

In addition, Elena provided this piece she shared with her tribe about the importance of creating a circle of support around you.  I hope you enjoy it and find at least ONE way that you could better support YOURSELF – because ultimately everything stems from there.  It’s the proverbial “oxygen mask theory” (you know the one – start with yourself?).  It’s time.

From Elena Lipson

sacred-circle-1024x679The Divine Self-Care Mentor

“Sacred Circle of Support”

You know that warm, comforting feeling you get when you’re sitting around the table with a group of beloved friends and talking about life, love, work, kids and everything else that is literally on the table?

It’s that delicious feeling of being part of a circle of conversation, of love, of compassion and empathy. Within these conversations you may share tears, laughter, joy and growth. You may share new ideas, new ways of seeing a situation in your life and a feeling that you are SO not alone in what you’re going through.

This circle of friends sitting around a table and sharing is something that I have very mindfully and intentionally been calling into my own life over the last many years. And I can honestly say that today I am surrounding by the most incredible circles of support in my life, both in my work and within my family and friends.

I truly believe that as women, mothers, friends, daughters and business owners, we are pulled in many directions by the needs of many and these pulls can literally make us sick, exhausted and depressed over time. With all of these pulls on your energy, it’s easy to put off taking care of your mind, body, spirit and heart on a consistent basis.

You may manage to squeeze in a yoga class or a pedicure. Which are both fabulous! But to truly get nourished on deep levels we need to ask ourselves what we need most to create a personal philosophy of living in a way that allows us to thrive, to be authentic, to live this one wild amazing life in a way that honors our unique path and purpose.

One of the most incredible ways to nourish yourself is to create or become part of a circle of others who are also ‘soul-seekers’ and know that there is so much more magic in life when shared among friends. Even in my business circles we most definitely get down to the nitty-gritty strategy sharing and support of ideas and projects, but there is something also very heart-centered in these circles that comes through. We are all women with a passion to create something meaningful and heart-centered. Whether it’s a six-figure business or a more playful and peaceful life.

If you are feeling the power of what I’m describing, look at ways to create circles of support within your own life. Whether it’s the mamas around you in your kiddo’s school, or online in communities where you share similar interests, you can create your own circle. You can have as many or as few women in your circle as you choose, or you can just let the process happen organically. If you are interested in support around your work, think of women in your community that you are drawn to and maybe share a few similar interests.

You may even create a circle that meets on every Full Moon or New Moon and add some magic and ritual to your space {I have one of these and they are MAGICAL!}. However you choose to create your circle of support is totally up to you. Either way, the magic is in the circle itself.

lindsay

lindsay

Lindsay Pera is the co-founder and “Inspirer-in-Chief” of Chronic Wellness Tools and advocates for fostering an authentic healing relationship with yourself. She strives to share a message of hope, inspiration, of practical tools for getting unstuck and moving forward on your healing journey. Lindsay wants to live in a world where appreciation flows freely, kids play outdoors and lemons are in season year round.