In an earlier article, we discussed the value of having a sense of purpose in life and some easy steps to help you discover yours. Recall that purpose is related to vitality, mental acuity, and longevity.
Now, we will explore the three key pillars to keep leveling up your life of purpose… where you are most vibrant and powerful. A life you know matters because you feel ‘on purpose’, whatever that is for you.
The three pillars to create your life that matters include:
We can thank Claire Zammit Ph.D., Evolving Wisdom LLC, for her extensive research regarding these three centers of our power as women.
This series of articles will help you begin creating a life that matters to you and spark more passion for life. Think of the three legged stool. Once you have all legs in place, life will support you to create the life you want.
Many women in their 60s and beyond experience at least in passing that they may not “matter” anymore. The notion is related to feeling relevant and is usually associated with a role, like parenting, work, or volunteering.
Sometimes it is framed as the good days being in the past… along with a bit of apprehension about the future. True, many of our life roles have shifted. This can be something to lament or celebrate. I vote for the latter.
The trick is to stop looking outside to roles and norms for what defines relevance; realize you know what really matters in your life. We are going to explore listening to your own wisdom.
Your inner wisdom needs to feel welcome in order to make herself known and heard. That translates to liking yourself, and thus welcoming the wisdom that you embody.
Many of us have patterns of thinking about ourselves that may not serve us. Some we may have learned during our youth, such as if we are lovable or visible. Some we learn from life experience and culture, such as if we have valuable insights to offer.
What do you really think about yourself? How well do you take care of you? How much do you like you? Are there parts of you that you hide or try to ignore? Celebrate you if you have come to accept and love yourself as much as you would your best friend or child. Doing this is a quest for all of us as women.
Your relationship with yourself is the most important question to explore in creating a life that you are passionate about living. So, how do we learn to love ourselves even more? The voice of your inner wisdom will be muted by any negative thoughts in your mind. Manage your thinking to set your wisdom free.
Yes, this is an act of courage, so the images are intentional! Does your self-talk help you feel confident and powerful, or does it lead you to feel inadequate and unimportant?
For three days, notice your own self-talk. Your inner wise woman certainly is not going to want to engage in a conversation with a barrage of negative thoughts. Come to her aid! When you notice any negative or judgmental thinking, what do you do? Talk back!
Have a phrase to say to yourself that uplifts you, such as:
Now that you have tuned in to managing your mind, let’s get in touch with the wise woman within you. Your wisdom is embodied, not found in mental activity. This is the part of you that knows what matters, so you definitely want to have easy access to that knowing.
After you decide on which wisdom guidance described below works best for you, here is a 7-minute audio to guide you through the reflection.
Here are three ideas for how to listen to your inner wise woman that have worked for others. They all use the same process to tap into the voice of wisdom; you choose the source of that wisdom based on your own comfort.
Before you begin, settle into a comfortable place and breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth three or more times. This gets you in sync with your parasympathetic nervous system – or “rest and digest” as it has been called.
Now ask your wise woman for the guidance you seek. It may be a problem, an open-ended question, or simply general guidance.
One example that I use with clients is to ask what it is that they want to experience in their lives and to feel in their lives.
#1: Welcome her as your best friend. Use this one especially if you are one who has a fabulous relationship with yourself already.
#2: Welcome her as a the ideal future version of yourself (don’t worry about the details, just hold the vision). Take yourself into your future 5 – 10 years and imagine that your life has unfolded perfectly. See yourself in that context.
#3: Welcome her as a sacred guide. This can work for those of you who are practiced using the notion of guides, in whatever form resonates.
Breathe and listen for 5 – 20 minutes, depending on what you are able to do at the moment. Listen. You may get a feeling, actual words, a knowing, an image… impressions arrive in many forms. Even if you think there is no communication, the knowing may just come to you later.
The last phase is to thank your wisdom for her presence in your life.
The best part of all is that the more you practice, the more your wise woman will stay active in your life and decision making.
How do you access your inner wisdom? If you tried this exercise, what happened? Is your voice of inner wisdom active or quiet?