Recently a woman said to me that she had expected that working in a community of women would be full of love and mutual support. But instead she was burnt-out from doing too much, from managing personality clashes between women, and from criticism for what she was doing without any offers of help.
We modern women still have a lot to learn about living together with our authentic femininity.
There are two aspects to this situation, and both involve the archetypes.
In our busy lives with many expectations, the list of ‘things to do’ can be overwhelming, and we try with our Mother and Maiden archetype energies to achieve everything and to satisfy everyone. Our sense of who we are comes from success and productivity and from our ability to express love and caring. But it never seems to be enough – and we start to feel that we are not enough.
Many therapists suggest we build ‘boundaries’, but the Mother archetype doesn’t like this – she is about openness and caring for other’s needs. So instead we can call on our Crone archetype to remind us that in all things we are ‘enough’. We may not clear the inbox or our list of things to do, but we are still ‘enough’ just as we are. The Crone supports the Maiden, telling her that for today she has done enough. She supports the Mother telling her that today she has helped enough. She supports the Enchantress telling her that she is loved enough. We take refuge in the Crone.
But as well as feeling the stress of the demands of others, are we also pushing other women towards emotional burn-out?
How often have you expressed frustration or anger with someone, criticised without any empathy, been aggressive and attacked or quit a situation, and then found out later that you were Enchantress (pre-menstrual phase)?
We women have a responsibility in our Enchantress phase to embrace her energies safely without doing damage to others. Her energies and her stories are powerful BUT they are nothing to do with the people or situations around us and everything to do with how we feel and listen to our need for self-love and nurturing. It is so easy to go to social media as therapy, but unlike a true therapy session we can hurt, damage and wound other people in what we say.
So we need to recognise when we are Enchantress. If there is an issue, rather than offering criticism or aggression we need to wait until we are in another phase, and then offer support and help. But we can only do this if we give the Enchantress the self-nurturing she needs.
So just for today realise that you are enough.
Just for today, if you are Enchantress, protect others and privately express your emotions and subconscious patterns. Tell others you are Enchantress so that they can understand. Meet your self-nurturing needs.
When we all recognise, understand and live our cyclic nature, then we can sustain communities of women with love and mutual support.