Embracing feminine and masculine power consciously
Michele Jones has found her best life by helping her clients find theirs. Her words, as our Feminessence Brand Ambassador, are profoundly important – with meaning and consequence for all women.
‘Initially, I believed that to be a successful person in business or to ignite and possess the entrepreneurial spirit, I had to bring my masculine energy to the forefront. Drive, strength, confidence, focus, independence… the daily grind… the hustle. Let’s be honest, these are all traits that we tend to admire in an entrepreneur – or maybe we’ve just come to recognise them over time as the characteristics we should possess if we’re to succeed.
It was all I had ever witnessed. These were versions of success that I recognised and aspired to, and the kind of life I previously wanted to live. Over time, this has made me realise that it’s no wonder women tend to take on a more masculine persona in business. In a male-dominated world, where male entrepreneurs outnumber women two to one, if not more, most women feel that they need to act more like a man to be successful in business.
That was my early experience of being in business until I could shape my own identity. I had relied on modelling others whom I deemed to be successful or who were in a position of leadership around me at the time.
I was taught to imitate those around me until my own understanding and innovation could take flight. Perhaps we’re all raised with some of this in us? I believe these characteristics and my understanding of them at the time were purely through stereotypical ideals and social conditioning.
I also believe that this comes from the common misconception that our feminine side is weak, while our masculine side is strong. What I’ve come to realise is, whether you are male or female, whilst our feminine energy is indeed softer, it’s by no means weaker. Both men and women have feminine and masculine energy. It’s about the balance of both, not the lack of one or the other.
I’m so glad I experienced my own awakening to this.
I now believe that through embracing our feminine side, we’re able to produce positive results in business for both genders. The feminine traits that I’ve learnt to bring to the forefront, are embodied and integrated into my day-to-day business operations which have ultimately led to my greatest successes, boosting my business beyond my earliest dreams or vision. These are traits such as thoughtfulness, compassion, vulnerability, intuition, patience, collaboration, and they all stem from accessing deep insights and the core of my passion. What I’ve also learnt is that they cannot fit purely into the three-dimensional, physical mode of operating.
Globally, the human race is operating either in 3D, 4D or 5D levels of consciousness, or a combination of all three.
Most of us are moving back and forth between two or three of these dimensional states of consciousness depending where we are at in our lives, and where we are on our own path. 3D is usually represented by feelings of fear, limitations, lack of interconnectedness, suffering, working hard to succeed, being locked in by time and space or the belief that proximity holds all the power and seeing yourself as an individual that is separate from others.
4D tends to act like a gateway to connect us from our 3D existence into a 5D way of living. 4D consciousness begins to awaken to the idea that we are all connected and that there is more to life than meets the eye. Thoughts become powerful and can shift the way reality is perceived. Duality and the idea of good and bad is still experienced, but there is more compassion and understanding behind it.
There is an opening to the importance of diet, meditation and leading a healthy lifestyle. What you put into your body becomes important and there is a desire to pay attention to how your actions affect the environment and those around you. There is also a strong desire to find your purpose and to follow your passions. You understand that life is meant to be enjoyed and that you are worthy to live the life of your dreams and become your own version of what living your best life means to you.
You perceive the world through six senses and your intuition starts to grow and expand. You seek a deeper meaning to life and you can start to see the synchronicity and magic of the universe. Over this past year, as a human race, many of us have been rapidly shifting into a higher state of consciousness towards and into 5D. The traits of these higher states that I’ve integrated and embodied have brought with them a greater sense of expansiveness within myself, my clients and my business, and those whose lives I’ve been fortunate to touch.
This has allowed for more possibility, more opportunity and more sense of ease, yet a deeper understanding at the core of it all and with greater meaning.
The 5D state feels effortless.
From this level of consciousness, you begin to understand that we are all one and we are all connected. Life becomes an adventure of growth and there is no such thing as good or bad. Judgement ceases to exist. There are stronger feelings of love and connectedness with others, the planet and even the galaxies around us.
Love and compassion reign supreme.
You understand that everyone is on their own journey. There is a higher purpose for all things and every experience holds meaning. Everyone is equal and there is a desire to live from a place of pure authenticity. You understand that your purpose is to live your truth and to seek joy. From this state, you know there is no competition and there is enough in the universe for everyone. You feel peaceful emotions of love and compassion for life, Mother Earth and the stars around you.
The challenges and suffering that occur in life don’t have the same intensity. You can face them with a sense of ease and a knowing that everything is for your highest good. Your intuition is extremely strong and you may even feel connected to angelic beings and ‘god-like’ signs of the universe or the divine, whatever you relate to the most as your own source of the higher power, beyond our human existence. I believe that as more humans make this shift, they will experience oneness, radical forgiveness, unconditional love, manifestations at a faster rate and a feeling of being supported by energy as our dreams and purpose begin to unfold.
For this to happen we must surrender the old story we have been told and at the very least be open to another way of being. We must give up the resistance created in hanging onto the old narrative of struggle, fight and pain which keeps all of humanity rooted in the energy of the old 3D. It’s our job to continue to awaken to it and to understand the elements of embracing feminine and masculine power consciously as we move forward through life on our own path, on our own journey.
BOOST YOUR LIFE & BUSINESS THROUGH THESE TRAITS!
The feminine trait of thoughtfulness allows us to nurture and act with care and consideration those around us, our clients, staff and potential clients. Being thoughtful lets them know we genuinely care and it helps build strong, lasting relationships based on loyalty and integrity.
In my opinion, the best leaders today are caregivers, regardless of whether they’re men or women. Caregiving and thoughtfulness have traditionally been viewed as feminine qualities because they’ve been associated with mothering. But a mothering nature for a caregiver in the workplace is simply someone who nurtures their team’s talent and inspires the best kind of work ethic with values, purpose and passion.
Being able to see another’s suffering and respond to it allows us to better understand our clients’ needs and wants. It is then we can create solutions that our key audience needs, not what we assume they need. It was through the process of working with organisations as they restructure or undergo significant change that I realised the purest intention and power of using emotions and how essential they are to the connection they bring to the human endeavour. I realised more than ever the importance of the care factor – allowing people to be seen, heard and valued for the contribution they offer.
I realised that compassion and emotion are needed to breed success into any workplace, business or organisation. One of the things I’ve also learned from working with effective leaders is that they embody traits such as practising compassion and using their emotions as rocket fuel. Most people want to feel heard and understood, so these traits are needed to connect on a human level. As a leader you must have compassion and curiosity to understand who someone is at their core – their goals, fears, aspirations, passions, beliefs, insecurities – all of it.
Compassion is foundational to both innovation and entrepreneurship. To find opportunities, we must be looking with our ears and listening with our hearts. Clients may not know how to create the actual product or solution that will ease their pain points, but they are certainly the best equipped to articulate their challenges – that is, for anyone who is willing to listen.
So, perhaps, when we scoff when we’re told to get in touch with our ‘feminine side’, it’s time we take it to the bank, especially if we want to remain in this age of compassionate opportunity and emotion-driven entrepreneurship.
As scary at is sounds to let our soft underbellies show, being vulnerable with our market allows them to see that we, too, are real people. Sharing our struggles and fears makes us more relatable and strangely more likeable. People are more likely to buy from people they like! Authenticity goes hand-in-hand with vulnerability. It’s where you decide to come out from behind yourself, into the conversation and make it real.
Authenticity, therefore, is not something you have, it’s something you choose.
You don’t have to have all the answers. Be transparent and admit to it. We are all human, and we all continue to learn. I’ve learnt that if I want to fully embrace authenticity, I need to be willing to make myself vulnerable. Being vulnerable also means owning up to your own limitations and asking for help when and where you need it.
For a connection to happen, we must allow ourselves to be seen, really seen… deeply seen. People who have high self-worth realise this and have the courage to be imperfect. They have the compassion to be kind first to themselves and then to others. They have a connection as a result. They have a willingness to let go of who they should be and embrace who they are, which is absolutely essential for deep meaningful connections.
You have to fully embrace vulnerability. It’s where our greatest source of untapped power lies. It’s the key ingredient of a leader, and of a culture that creates openness, truth telling, innovation and most of all, connection.
That gut feeling you get when you know something is really good or really bad is a feminine quality. You know when you know you just know. Listen to it. Nurture it and it will serve you well, allowing you to solve problems even before they arise. Both men and women have intuition, but there may be science behind why we refer to it as ‘women’s intuition’.
Women’s ability to draw insight from what seems intangible is in fact just heightened sensory ability, because we’re using our senses to pick up on cues others may miss – even if we’re doing it subconsciously. Research on non-verbal communication has shown that women in general are better than men at reading facial expressions, and so can pick up on more subtle emotional messages.
Intuition has long been ignored in the workplace in favour of hard data and facts. The truth is that you need both to innovate and be successful. Listening to my own intuition and tapping into my innate wisdom, or what I call ‘heartbeat moments’, has definitely been an integral key to my own success.
This is a learned skill that opposes the masculine drive forward. While the masculine seeks to change things, the feminine calmly goes with the flow. It is a useful trait to nurture as an entrepreneur for those moments when nothing is going your way. We have all heard that ‘patience is a virtue’. This says that if you are to be a good person, you must work hard to exercise patience. It’s especially true these days, when there appears to be a growing sense of frustration, whether it is at work, with the government or with societal issues, in particular those that force us to change the ways we must defend ourselves (to assure we are not being taken advantage of) or those we love (to protect our kids from bullying and keeping them out of harm’s way).
Our collective effort to exercise patience is being tested today more than ever before – and as leaders we must do more to make up for those that have already lost their patience along the way. I have always done my best to see the world through the lens of others and I continue to evaluate tension points in unbiased ways, which means to listen and ask questions with a positive attitude and with the right intent. What it always means for me is to never run away from being responsible for myself and my choices.
There is power in collaboration. The masculine tends to be more, ‘I did this. I did that.’ In general, women tend to talk more in the ‘we’ because we realise that the power of the team is diversity, and the best teams have different kinds of skills and thought leadership at the table. If we were all the same, companies would not be able to evolve, and would remain blinded by the warrior at the helm. Great work doesn’t happen in silos. If you want to drive innovation, you need to connect and collaborate with others who have different skill sets, experiences and perspectives.
We all have both feminine and masculine traits. They are, in fact, two sides of the same coin. In each of us one may be more dominant than the other. In a man’s world, where success is synonymous with hard-nosed-don’t-take-no-BS-from-anyone drive and arrogance, it can be easy to dismiss our feminine traits. To do so deprives us of becoming a complete person, causing us to alienate our clients and staff. By showing our feminine traits of thoughtfulness, compassion, vulnerability, intuition and patience, we make ourselves and our business more approachable and open to new possibilities.
You don’t need technology and science to create breakthrough innovations. You just have to be tuned in enough and hold a big enough vision to see a gap in the marketplace and the determination to keep iterating until you find a winning solution.
INSIGHT, PASSION AND COMPASSION
I believe these are the three most important qualities of the modern entrepreneur. I was always surrounded by a sea of men who were leading with ROI and dotting their ‘i’s and crossing their ‘t’s. I was always told there was no room for emotion in the boardroom. So, what’s a girl to do? Conform to the leadership style that was historically rewarded with success? Or follow my heart and be myself, bringing passion and compassion to the workplace and putting people at the centre? There were so few women at the top back then that most conformed to the rules. I came to realise Sarah Jessica Parker was right when she said, ‘Trying to be a man is a waste of a woman’.
I knew I had to be me. It’s not about being female and male. It’s not even about being feminine or masculine. It’s about having a balance of both regardless of who you are. Every one of us has a combination of masculine and feminine qualities. Instead of suppressing our feminine qualities because society may believe them to be of less value, I believe we need to tap into those qualities personally and professionally as our source of power.
It’s a power that comes from being connected to our true self. The definition of your own femininity that carves out your unique feminessence is going to be different for everyone and defining femininity for yourself is an individual path. For me, femininity is about having a strength that I define as ‘grace with grit’.
I call it the ‘feminine principle’. ‘Business as usual’ has traditionally been dominated by masculine qualities, while denying and undervaluing feminine capacities. The prevailing business culture is hypermasculine and holds most feminine qualities in contempt. Masculine ambitious energy is characterised by greed, power, self-centricity, ego, fear, insecurity and anger. This frictional energy is what caused the problems in the global economic crisis.
To become balanced, integrated and, yes, successful, organisations of all kinds need to value and cultivate feminine energies and qualities within their cultures. Feminine values may get lip service but often very little respect. Women in business are expected to be more like a man. Strength is seen as unfeminine, because if you are a strong woman, you are not feminine, but if you are feminine you are considered weak.
I feel so strongly about the feminessence movement.
I am proud to be the launching Brand Ambassador and to be here sharing my thoughts with you through the pages of this magazine. Women already have a great deal of power in the world, but they don’t always recognise it. So, if this movement can allow them to step into the power they already have, they can bring about rapid and wide-ranging global change. Twenty years ago, there was only one female CEO running a Fortune 500 company. There are now thirty-seven. The trajectory is encouraging!
I believe a truly conscious leader can call on positive masculine and feminine qualities regardless of their gender. I feel that this is the movement we’ve all been longing for, where leaders will stand tall and be proud to own their innate feminine capacities, which will in turn be valued and rewarded. I believe it’s our corporate responsibility as conscious leaders.
It’s at the very core of all we do at LYBL (Live Your Best Life). Our mission is empowering you to live your best life – no matter who you are. This movement will bring with it a force for good amongst people, business and the community collective. So, let your wisdom and intuition guide you. Be generous of heart and be dedicated in the highest way. Put humanity before profit and you will build the most successful business and life for yourself. It’s our birthright to live our best life.
Be all that you are. Living your best life is your most important journey.
I look forward to the day when our paths cross, so we get to celebrate your every effort on this planet.