I just got an invitation to be part of women gathering in a small group, talking… about entrepreneurial women. Count me in for that one! But that’s not the point. The point is that with permisssion from Sheila Winter Wallace, I’d like to share with all of you what an invitation for women to gather, might sound like.
We often hesitate to invite others to engage in conversations with us unless we have a good reason, an agenda, a defined outcome, a sense of how we want things to unfold and what things we want to have unfold. You know, all the things that we’ve been taught should be in place so that we have a sense of being ‘in control’ of the process and will be seen to ‘know what we’re doing’ by those who are invited to engage with us.
We’ve been brainwashed into believing that calling people together for a meaningful outcome must be framed, labelled and prescribed in some way. Nay, nay! Not so! Far too often this becomes the tiny box that we all mold and shape ourselves to and end up leaving such conversations feeling that we have, indeed, wasted our time.
Here’s some of what Sheila (a certified CODE Model Coach™) wrote:
“I am looking to engage with women who ‘work’ for self- discovery – for whom manifesting a meaningful and prosperous life demands that they wake up to who they are and who they can become; women who are self-employed or are in the employ of others and who are entrepreneurial in their willingness to create differently; women who risk the contextual expectations of the collective by intrepidly inserting themselves uniquely into their worlds; women, who, because of their urgent desire to carve out self- transformative lives, risk so that they can become more; women who are done with being sick and tired; women who are done with championing the cultural phenomenon of the ‘balancing act’; women who know, inherently, that life is not to be lived in separate boxes according to external references; women who trust their intuitions more than their intellects; women who are ready to say, ‘No’, to what no longer works; women who are urgently ready to say, ‘Yes’, to what they do not yet know about themselves in their capacity to choose for themselves in their respective worlds; women who are ready to redefine and reclaim their lives according to who they are and to whom they can become, not according to what they do.
I am not looking for strategy, rules, dogma, policy, best practices, training or tips in a discussion about business. I am looking for a potent, deeply meaningful and spiritual conversation about what it means to be me in my life – with business, work and entrepreneurship being the result of me showing up and engaging authentically… for me.
… I have no agenda. I have no desire to set up a new network per se; the connections that create themselves will naturally and authentically fall out of the deeper conversation that starts on January 19. My desire is to connect with others, in simple aloha here and now – with others who want to define and claim what is potently possible for them by just showing up. Just show up. No agenda. No fees. We’ll see where it all goes. ”
Sign me up!!!! And here’s what it took from Sheila to create such a compelling invitation and the space to engage with her: before anything else, she had to get honest with herself about what she wanted as an experience. She had to decloak. She had to be willing to get naked and allow all to see what she cares about and what she’s done with - regardless of how others might have their interpretations about that and their judgements/opinions about that. I learned long ago: judgements/opinions are like belly buttons – everybody has them and none of them belong to you!
Sheila had to ‘go first’; had to put herself out there and declare what she wanted, not knowing who (if anyone!) would share her desire. And you already know how that goes: we’ve been trained to hide in the weeds and get the lay of the land before sticking our necks out and allowing ourselves to be seen. You can never be too cautious when it comes to preventing a sense of shame and/or embarrassment in the body.
You can’t make a difference – in your life or the lives of the people you care about – if you’re not willing to stand up and be seen for what is real, true, honest and meaningful for you. You can’t create the life you want by living the one you think you’re stuck with! And when you do dare go first, be prepared to be amazed by how many people have also been sitting in the weeds – waiting for you to show up and lead the way.
Leadership is an outcome – a result – of living authentically. It is not a verb describing an action, it’s a noun that allows us to look back on the byproduct of living true to ourselves. Breathing in and breathing out; allowing the truth of your experience to flood your body; and engage! That’s what it takes.
Be bold! Ask for what you want and let your voice be heard! Who knows what Practical Magic you can create!
Thanks, Sheila, for being wiling to go first. I know I’ll be in great company on January 19th!