Releasing The Woo

Over the past few months, I've taken a few steps back, observing + evaluating many things in my life. One of those has been everything spiritual - from recent feelings, the people I know, articles + the community I have been + am part of. Through this process, It's felt like a roller coaster of shadow work, light work, affirmation + sometimes complete irritation.

There's a phrase picking up circulation that I used to be okay with, in fact, I've used it from time to time (even though I felt valley girl dumb) + I was going to be part of an amazing retreat that had this word in its name. That word is Woo Woo.

"Woo Woo" is a label used to coin someone or something as spiritual + conscious, but not religious (usually involving yoga, manifestation practices, meditation, mindfulness, you get the picture). Something like, "Hey! I'm feeling woo woo, let's do yoga at the rooftop brewery then have tea + read tarot!"

Personally, I just don't like this word, but in retrospect, no woman should like this word, it is a strikingly hyper-feminine jumble of whimsy alliteration, like the fluffy girly names our mothers tell us to call our vaginas, labia(s) + breasts. This word feels like it softens, depreciates, downgrades + belittles our journey, way of life or experiences (whatever your experience may be) into be a more awake human.

There can be fun in spirituality, lots of fun, but please let's not give it a name, or at least not something that resembles puffy pink bedazzled sorority trinket. After all, we're still swimming in a misogynist world where we say "I'm sorry" too much, feel like we have to justify our choices to others, we compare ourselves with filtered social media projections + think our beautiful bodies need weight loss, surgery or unnatural enhancements.

Besides a personal distaste, I mostly hear this novelty word from white, privileged women (I AM white + very tuned in + struggle with my own privilege) to justify an experience or a new + interesting frame of consciousness. This is same privileged kind that will spend $75 on yoga pants creatively marketed to women to illicit feelings like strong, fierce + fabulous. That fierceness, that beauty, that strength? It's inside of every damn woman, it's always been there + we don't need articles of clothing, goddess coursework training or a perfected Instagram account to justify or establish our soul value. We are already enough, we're already authentic. Our society (the same one that thinks you need $75 yoga pants + matching mandala printed $60 tank top) wants us to think otherwise. Woo woo doesn't feel authentic,  it doesn't sound authentic (in fact, childish) + it's being represented by women who are amazing enough to say "I am me" + erase it from their vocabulary all together.

Instead, how about this

"I am me,
I am enough,
I need no labels".

You get women declaring this instead
+ we have a damn revolution.

Not slapping on a constant label (woo woo, yogi, guru, intuitive, empath, goddess, etc) + just declaring we are who we are, label-free, is most powerful + often difficult because it still doesn't tell others immediately who we are. THIS is exactly it, we're not jars of canned vegetables on a market shelf, we're storybooks + if we align with the right people, we unravel their story as they do ours.

Embarking on becoming conscious + mindful feels damn exciting + exhilarating, especially in the beginning. It's like what sex is like early in a relationship, cathartic. However, in this blissed-out stage, ignorance is an easy trap to fall into. Branding yourself is one of the easiest traps. I fell into that trap, I felt like I had to look a certain way for yoga class, + in that class, I felt like I needed to push myself to be like everyone else. When I first came out, I labeled myself as a femme lesbian (the LGBTQ community is quite label loving). I've used elements from another culture (which I knew nothing about, nor respected) for my own desires. I look back now + could cringe, but I'm now hanging out on the flipside + have learned to think things through more consciously for the next time. Of course, I'll make mistakes.

"Woo Woo" ranks in the same realm of cultural appropriation (bindi tattoos, colonizing native practices, headdresses at Cochella, glamifying yoga + sacred cultures or using the word "tribe" to reference your group of friends) or companies + organization like Spiritual Gangster, Sisterhood of the Goddess Divine Mastery Program (okay, I bullshit this name, but Google for yourself, these exist) + Lululemon that cater to pure exclusivity + capitalize on this new age movement in the most inauthentic + material ways.

Straying from my personal feelings, I dug deeper on the history of how "Woo Woo" came to be + discovered it was pretty much, well, full of Woo. From RationalWiki:

The term comes from "woo-woo", an epithet used in the 1990s by science and skeptical writers to ridicule people who believe or promote such things. This is in turn believed to have come from the onomatopoeia "woooooo!" as a reaction to dimmed lights or magic tricks. The term implies a lack of either intelligence or sincerity on the part of the person or concepts so described.

My desire in bringing this to light is not for people to be offended. It's to make us think. Think more about the words we use, how we show up, how we really feel about something or someone, what we post + how we communicate. There are times I wish I would have read something like this to come across my path during moments of my life.

Here's the kicker...
I have crystals (I love them)
I charge my water under the Full Moon (I even capitalize Full Moon)
I co-create spiritually-grounded, magical retreats for women (where we've never heard or used "woo woo")
I try to be mindful
I use plant medicine to connect myself with Spirit
I sometimes practice yoga
I make yearly vision boards
and... I also have a $72 pair of yoga pants that I cling to with disdain (this purchase occurred during my own awakening)

On the other side, I eat meat, I think homeopathy isn't the ultimate solution, I drink beer, I dislike meditation, I don't buy all organic, I sometimes argue with my partner + I have problems with expectations + control (among other things). I am human, I'm not "Woo Woo", I don't belong to a tribe, I'll never call myself an alchemist or yogi + I never want to be a spiritual gangster. I'm just me, + that is quite enough.

Each one of these things make up who I am, there is NO label needed. Your current frame of mind doesn't need a designation, we're constantly changing after all! Our wonderful journey, experiences or paths don't need a label. Sometimes, we need to relish in the beauty + non-conformity of, "I am here, this is me".

*SIDE NOTES*

If this topic interests you, here are some resources that might get your own wheels spinning (as my best friend + soul sister Britt says, "there's dogma in everything" + she's absolutely true, so take what you wish from these):

White Ladies Finding Themselves Sisterhoods (article)
Yoga, Cultural Appropriation & Decolonizing our Practice (podcast)

Among "woo woo" there are other words + phrases I have had trouble ridding from my vocabulary, including my "I'm sorry's". Accidentally bump into someone? I say I'm sorry. Missed a phone call from someone? I say I'm sorry. Don't like the way someone makes me feel, I start our with "I'm sorry but...".

In fact, I wrote I'm sorry or I don't want to offend many times during this article. Sheesh.

How to Stay Grounded & Active During This Political Climate

There we were, myself in Washington, DC & Britt in Oklahoma City, swimming in the sea of this new revolution. Handmade signs appeared in the crowd like wave capped foam in a deep sea of pink (thanks to those pussy hats). Children, men, trans, people of every color & race, gender non-conforming & every type of woman imaginable - from 3 years old to 93 years old all gathered this weekend. Why? Many personal, many glaringly obvious, but many came from the heart dropping disappointment & sadness felt with we realized our country wasn't as progressive & heart forward as we thought.

Two days after the Women's March & I'm still feeling dizzy.
Dizzy because it provided a high of this powerful community.
Dizzy because it was the kindest group of people I've ever been in (lot's of "oh! Excuse me, coming through!").
Dizzy because I realize Trump had to be elected to sew together this monstrous community of support & love.
Dizzy because I feel in every part of my body, mind & heart this is only the beginning.
Dizzy because I’ve come from conservative roots & now I see the contrast so clearly.
Dizzy because people were marching on all 7 continents - including 30 women in Antarctica.

I’ll never be able to put the emotions into words nor the sights or the energy. Many people on the contrasting side have internalized the Women’s March as a “sad group of man-hating fat women” or “new-wave feminists who can’t get over the win” - we wish they could’ve been there, even if for a moment, swimming in that powerful sea of love. This is what we’re up against, others (many of them women) who have been told we’re nasty, sore losers, man-haters, delusional, etc. Saturday was exactly opposite of all those words & no verbal justification or explaining is needed for our oppressors & criticizers. Our soul, eyes & heart has been the first seat passenger on all the reasons why we march, support & move forward.

So, we’ve marched. We've witnessed the emergence of this movement. We should all honor the fights & souls that have blazed this path. We are in it now. The common question & topic of “what’s next?” follows. A high energy & emotional event (like this weekend) is life altering but keeping the momentum is the powerful aftermath we're all responsible for. We’re going to talk about it, because it's just as important as coming together. Below, we’re listing suggestions & resources for fostering this powerful force you’ve created along with others. If you have any suggestions or more to add, we’re glad to do so, just reach out to us at YouAreVenus@gmail.com.

BE STILL

Meditate, practice some deep breath work, stretch, take baths. In these times of verbal attacks & quick judgements, you’ll need to carve out time for self-care & self-love. Many people (especially women) who are overextended, over-worked & underappreciated are those who anger quickly & without much thought (media usually helps fuel up manufactured thinking). Slowing down, taking a breather does wonders for the body & mind.

TURN IT OFF

This might be an excellent time to cut ties with your cable company, plus it’ll save you some extra dough for some self-care & pampering (above). Given the political climate, the news causes anxiety & snap judgements. Turning it off for a whole week or permanently might be one of the healthiest things you can do for yourself. Checking your phone falls right along these lines, challenge yourself & others to check your social media 2 - 3 times a day, turn off your notifications or leave your phone in another room. Not ready for this? Check out this gradual 7 Day Smart Phone Detox here.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO ENGAGE

If you’re like us & have family members who lash out at you with hurtful, ignorant & thoughtless comments (usually on social media, because there’s no facial confrontation), you don’t have to fight back. Ever. At this point, there are amazing resources out there for them to gain a full & eloquent answer to their “why are you whining?” and “he’s a great guy, why can’t you give him a chance?”. Some great ones are here:

A breakdown of “why women marched”
List of republican leaders that don’t support trump
Documented statements Trump has said about women While Running for president
Anything on FactCheck.org
Trump on women’s issues
Why women’s issues matter
Major misconceptions about the #BlackLivesMatter movement
Why trans people & issues matter

EVERYDAY ACTIVISM

Being an activist on Saturday was easy & we hope it brought on a sense accountability to bring home to your everyday life. What does this mean? Write your senators (why & steps below), meet others through events who share similar passions & voice (Meetup groups & Facebook events are a great go-to), attend rallys & marches. Most of all - be KIND, pick up someone else’s trash, pay for someone else’s coffee in the drive through, volunteer, donate - whatever you feel like doing to show this revolution is thoughtful & human-focused.  

The next march in Washington is the People's Climate March on 4/29, get in on the action here.

POSTCARD PROJECT

Right now, people are encouraged to write to their state senators to tell them why & how we will continue to organize & fight in response to the political, social & environmental climate. Why postcards? They’re inexpensive, easy to write & visually receptive to the recipient. The Women’s March website provides a step-by-step resource with mailing addresses here

GO GREEN

It doesn't take much research to realize Mother Earth is getting the shaft this term. This couldn’t be a better time to embrace green, eco-friendly switches & mindful living. Reusable grocery bags, abandon paper towels, glass containers instead of plastic, composting, turning off lights & shorter showers, biking more, switching to LED bulbs, create your own chemical-free cleaning products, flush less & opt out of junk mail.

Here are some additional lists:
"Easy ideas to incorporate Into Everyday Mindful Green Living"
"6 Tips for Sustainable Living"
"25 Green Eco-Friendly Products"
"Ways to Go Green"

UNDERSTAND THIS MOVEMENT IS NOT JUST ABOUT WOMEN

Our Trans, Cisgender, Black Lives Matter, Disabled & Queer communities are part of this, too. Don’t know much about your trans community? LEARN & connect. Be quiet & allow someone to tell you why their life matters. Ask their story, ask how the current political state makes them feel & open your heart (& mind, for some people). In sharing, you’ll find this movement even more powerful.

SPEND YOUR MONEY MINDFULLY

Did you know multi-billion dollar corporations such as LL Bean, QVC, Yuengling Beer & DSW have supported the Trump election or carry a Trump branded product? When we purchase something, we're putting our earned dollars towards more than a product, we're putting our money towards energy. Find an amazing list of stores, brands & companies to avoid here: #GrabYourWallet. Just as important? Purchasing goods from good-willed, green-forward, women, LGBTQ, & minority run businesses & makers. Here are some amazing lists to support other forward thinkers through their goods & services.
Lesbian & Bisexual Owned Business
Black lesbian, bisexual, queer or transgender woman
Top Green Companies of 2016
Minority & Woman-owned Business Directory
Top 20 Socially Responsible Companies


For those take issue where our stance is, please unfollow us. It's that simple. For all of the other brothers, sisters, gender non-conforming souls who we will proudly fight with, let's do this.

Love & peace prevail...
Bethany & Britt

#impatient: The Pressure of Social Media in Birth

When I was a child, my fascination sprouted for pregnancy & the female body. When my mother breastfed my brother, I breastfed my baby dolls & I still remember a moment (I was 3) rubbing my mother's pregnant belly with lotion.

If anyone knows this side of me, they know the fire & relentless passion I have for advocating awareness & broadening my knowledge when it comes to pregnancy, birth & postpartum. Nope, I'm not a raging, "natural birth is for everyone, if you don't do it you're terrible!". HOWEVER, I strongly feel that labor-related interventions often compromise a woman's body & our mismanaged healthcare system generally disregards a woman's power to birth (however birth feels right for her). The female body, during every stage, from conception to birth is sacred & transcendental. From the uterus to nipples, each system works in synchronicity to nourish & help an infant thrive, while healing itself & balancing a slew of hormones. When someone refers to someone with meek character as a "pussy" or "vagina" I think it's terribly hilarious. A vagina (& the other components) is one of the most physically powerful (if not most powerful) systems someone could have.

We should all aim to be vaginas.

There are so many topics that will organically surface when it comes to birth & pregnancy, but this one is calling me to be called out.

Recently, I was scrolling through a friends Facebook page, who is 9 months pregnant. Although we're not close, the energy I have picked up from being around her is she is somewhat private, lives a mindful life & has embraced this energy with her pregnancy. So it's no surprise she hasn't posted a million photos or updates during her pregnancy, no redundant "my baby is the size of an pear/mango/pineapple!" photos or daily rants about what she's craving or how the nursery looks. With no recent posts from her, these wall posts from her friends were glaring back at me (& everyone else, for all the world to see):

To the woman in the first comment: If mamma needed Red Raspberry, evening primrose, acupuncture, castor oil, etc. she'd probably reach out to you in the first place.

To the woman in the first comment: If mamma needed Red Raspberry, evening primrose, acupuncture, castor oil, etc. she'd probably reach out to you in the first place.

Many people would not see an issue with these comments, many simply seeing friends or family with loving intention anxious to meet the new arrival. I get it, I get it. Babies are awesome, but these cascade of comments, whether folks realize it, creates a spectator sports-like agenda filled with unnecessary pressure or unwelcome (& often overbearing) help. You have no idea what mamma is going through when these notifications ping her phone during the last (usually uncomfortable & emotional) 8 or 9 months of her pregnancy. She could have just been induced against her wishes, sitting on the toilet trying her damnest to take a poop despite a week of constipation or riding a roller coaster of emotions just thinking about her baby leaving the quiet & intimate womb they've shared together for almost a year.

If you really need a pregnancy or labor update, private message or text. Much more genuine than public posting.

Secondly, it's selfish. You are impatient? You are anxious? You are tired of waiting in the hospital waiting room for their scheduled c-section? We're not the one who has made compact space in our body for the baby, you're not the one know the specific cascade of emotions & hormones as mom nor are you a fly on the wall of the birthing room/space to entitle yourself to feel #impatient. I recently got a text from someone (whom I love & respect) complain about waiting in the hospital waiting room for a family friend's child to be born, I cringed.

The concept of backing off is simple, but emotionally challenging for some to understand. Pointing out this growing problem (among many when it comes to birth) only advocates deserved privacy & reclaims the sacred process birth can be... should be, or what a mamma or partner desires. It's time to become accountable to our social media posts, check-ins & updates in this spectrum, but really everywhere. Someone's birth, even if it is your child's, should be free (verbally & energetically) from your expectation, pushy excitement, questions or how you wish it to unfold.

Creating sacred space (physically, mentally & spiritually) for a new soul to emerge is overwhelming in itself, publicly posting on her wall, for everyone to see, "when are you due again? I'm waiting!" doesn't offer any form of support or energetic love.

Part of this is my opinion & intuition, but also the education I've received from a seasoned doula, midwives & moreso from the beautiful women in my life who have shared how just a few words or too many questions during their own experience made them feel inadequate, pressured & disrespected.

Numerous studies have proven stress during a woman's labor actually slows the process down. The magical uterus expands, contracts & rests functionally similar to the rectum. Would it be easy to take large bowel movement knowing that you have a room full of antsy people posting questions, tweeting, checking in & posting how #impatient they are for your poop? Nope, didn't think so. A woman's laboring body is no different.

Friends & families overstepping their bounds with the #impatient mentality (& addiction for social media validation) is something that has become a norm. I nosedived into it all (to confirm my thoughts above) with each point above relevant. Time to raise the vibration that this is not okay, give this process the space it deserve. Simple as that.

This is only scratching the surface. Posting about your new grandson, niece or best friends birth before they post is not okay either. Other amazing resources that couldn't say it any better. Sharing is a glorious catalyst for awareness:

A Guide to Birth Announcement Etiquette
Dear Everyone, Childbirth Isn't a Spectator Sport
Don't Insta my newborn: 5 rules for posting about a friend's baby

You have to learn to give zero Fucks.

Blog post from You.Are.Venus. how to not care what people think

If I gave the kind of time and energy some people want me to give, to explain my life choices and direction, I would spend countless hours wasting time reasoning and defending, the experience I desire to live.

If you do not understand someone's path, that is okay.
If you do not agree with someone's path, that is okay.
If you do not wish to take the same road they have traveled, this is also okay.

If you have an opinion over someone's life because you are miserable and don't want to make conscious decisions to change your own, that is NOT okay.
If you spend more time behind a computer screen complaining, rather than having a constructive voice or action towards change, that is NOT okay.

What we need to experience in this life is just for us.
If you need to take the hard, long route into clarity - so be it.
If you need to repeatedly make the same mistakes, follow the same patterns and repeat yourself until you learn who you are - it is what you need to do.

However we choose to live will teach us, no matter what road is traveled.

There is no wrong path, just not the one others may agree on or approve of for you.
This is their problem, not yours.
Sometimes we even have to check ourselves back in and remember to stay in our own lane.
Keep our mouth shut more, learn to be understanding, patient and kind.
Sometimes, you have to choose to silence your words towards those judging your path and give zero fucks about their views.

My forward, vulnerable words may make some uncomfortable, I know.
My openness to share my skin makes others uncomfortable, I know.
My desire to share love, peace and harmony irritates some, I know.

I hear all the time, " It isn't that easy, Brittany."
But in reality, it is.
Love, will shift the world.
No one will change my mind about this.

And the shift begins with those who think this way.

Imagine a world where the cynic turns into the voice of love and acceptance.
A world that never has a vision of a half empty glass.
Because everyone realizes that from the inside, they can make their own cup runneth over.

Sometimes we sit back and look at those we love and think, what the fuck are they doing!
But, look back at your own life and piece together the brilliance and beauty of the design made by your mistakes.

And ask yourself this, how would I know who I am now..... if I couldn't feel what I wasn't, back then.

Britt Johnson

This is my body, don't tell me what to do with it.

Do not define me by the color of my hair.
By the bleach I choose to cover over my mousey blonde; I am not hiding.


The feminine sway of my back that arches, it is not a form of seduction.
It is the curve of my feminine nature and I honor my sway.

I will show it if I choose to do so.

Do not define me by the substance I choose to sip, the smoke I choose to elude from my lungs or the curse words that roll off my tongue, effortlessly.

The moments I choose to spread myself open for another; baring my naked skin.

This is my body, don't tell me what to do with it.

Do not judge me by the words I speak to myself in the mirror, days when my own reflection makes me want to shut my eyes. Some days you may see beauty while all I see is a distorted figure. This too shall pass.

But you......you can not single-handedly distort me because I no longer allow myself to be defined or stereotyped.

I am not mediocre, I am fucking magic. 

I am a woman.

Undefinable, unrepentant and never diluted or dissolved by the projections of others.

You can not tear me apart with your opinions.

If I am to be torn a part, it will be by my own doing.

I am not a sinner, I am not a saint, I am not above or below another. 

I am you and we are..... all of us.

My existence may look different than yours.

Get over it.

I am not doing it wrong and neither are you.
You can't define something that you can't see through.

I am an undefinable woman.

This life I live is just for me.

Britt Johnson

Stretched thin & the power of "no"

BY: BETHANY

"No."

A short & powerful word that typically carries much social negativity in our constant-moving culture.

As we grow older, our calendar or planners in tow, we're bombarded with work, maintaining our health, scheduling dinners with friends, birthdays, contributing at home, attending weddings, showers, running errands... the list could stretch a mile.

When we quiet the noise & focus inward, we can't help but acknowledge our tired body, noisy mind & overworked heart declaring, "I'm exhausted".

When you're exhausted, it is the time to say no to those things that exhaust you.

Personally, the past two weeks have been borderline overwhelming - traveled to New York for a wedding, moved apartments, attended a bachelorette in South Carolina all while planning for our next retreat, less than a week away and running a small business.

During this time, I've taken inventory of body when it gets overwhelmed, paying careful attention to my mind & heart, in doing so, I embrace a new, relieving, simple response of "no".

Declining the invitation to meet up with friends, going out to dinners & even yoga class is something I'm not "feeling bad" about. I'm in tune to the stretch of my energy resulting in the disability for me to be fully present. Every person I have a relationship with deserves my whole, balanced presence, just like I do from them.

To force yourself to merely "show up" when you're mentally, physically & spiritually exhausted is not only harmful to yourself, but also to the energy you spread to the people you care about.

In our culture, we're programmed to get to work early, stay late (seriously, I worked for a company where this was one of the golden rules...) & go go go all the time. Shedding this distorted mindset & giving yourself the space, time & sanity by saying "no" almost trivializes our misguided, selfless society. I've found it also provides a very heightened contrast to those people who won't give themselves a break because they're in fear of letting themselves & others down.

Be the light. Give yourself the space. Your soul will only boast balanced energy & a more magical you.


If you need another push, this short video from Gaga should do the trick. The analogy might be on a different course, but the answer's all the same.

dropping the bs: CONNECTING through vulnerability

Since the dawn of time, women have been gathering for a million reasons - to birth, to fight for their rights, to party, to educate, to hold sacred space, to celebrate marriage, babies & more.

As our own moon gatherings & retreats have started to gain momentum, I am finding myself surrounded more & more with like-minded women. This has been amazing, but also, I have grown aware at the lack of these powerful connections & exchanges within our daily lives. When women come together in these modern time, it's typically around an occasion - happy hour or hyper-planned events like parties or dinners where this almost always happens,

"SO, HOW ARE YOU?"

"I'm good, soooo busy"

Someone recently touched on this redundant exchange (read it ) that got me thinking, we're ALL busy, life is about constantly shifting & transforming, right? So why aren't we asking our sisters, "how is your heart?" instead of inviting lackluster responses that comfortably shield the inner workings of our heart or struggles. When we drop an agenda to come together in safe spaces, promoting honest conversations, dropping the bullshit (egos, embarrassment, pain or control) the release & connection created might be surprising... & transforming.

vulnerability

Letting this thought fester (my over-analytical Virgo style), I've started to become increasingly aware of these hollow exchanges while embracing the genuine people entering my life & conversations that are so valuable to my soul. Those are the people I have no fear unveiling what is going on in my world at that moment - good, bad or uncertain.

When you realize these connections are powerful & trust in them, you won't have the, "oh shit, did I say too much?" afterthought. If you are asking that to yourself, you should not be sharing your energy, time or space with that person!

When women gather, unveiling their truth through words (& sometimes tears), energy is amplified & the release is undefinable. More so, this behavior starts to integrate into our daily life (not just in our like-minded circles) where you might find doors open a little wider, stalemate relationships time out & opportunities become clearer.

Finding time to gather shouldn't be terribly difficult, only your approach creates difficulty. Here are some ideas on how to get started, whatever your style might be.

1. Let your friends know you'll be holding monthly or bi-monthly groups/gatherings as a check-in with one another. Letting them know this is a time to "get real" is important, you want this to be a safe environment so voicing intentions will organically dissuade anyone that isn't aligned.

2. Rotate gatherings in different friends homes to give each space sacred energy. Create a calming setting that aligns with your circle of friends - light candles, burn incense or diffuse oils, create a playlist, sit on the floor or lie on living room couches. Get comfortable! Saging everyone when they arrive is a great way to clear negative energies.

3. If you don't know where to start, a great place is to pose a question so everyone in the circle can go around & answer, these are all great starting points to go deeper:

"HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT BEING HERE?"
"WHAT IS GOING GOOD IN YOUR LIFE RIGHT NOW?"
"HOW HAS YOUR HEART BEEN THIS MONTH/WEEK?

4. After the first round of questions, you might ask how everyone is feeling - it might be surprising how slowly opening the heart might surface unseen emotions. This is a good thing! Tears provide release, touch becomes a cloak of strength & a kind gaze is worth a million words. If your group is comfortable to move further, ask whatever might arise in your mind (or another person in the circle), this will evolve naturally. Some ideas:

"WHAT ARE YOU WANTING TO RELEASE THIS MONTH?"
"ARE YOU STRUGGLING WITH ANYTHING RIGHT NOW?"
"WHAT INTENTIONS WOULD YOU LIKE TO SET?"

5. Once you're ready to close the circle, try a 5 minute meditation (there are lots of great guided mediation apps), a short yoga flow or hold hands to literally feel the energy you've created. Close with last thoughts, a glass of wine, shimmy or hugs. Do what feels right.

If the thought of this seems uncomfortable, ask yourself why. It's the only way to get real with yourself. Do you have "surface" friends that you can't be real with? Do you have things you're nervous to release? Have you had your own vulnerability backfire? These answers speak volumes as to where you are & what you need to shed to embrace vulnerability. I promise, it's the most freeing feeling.

If you ever need ideas on how do amplify this within your circle, we want to support your efforts! Drop us an email at YouAreVenus@gmail.com. Want to join our gatherings? Check our schedule out here.

Thoughts by Bethany

Are you Celebrated into Existence?

Are you celebrated into existence?

Are you seen in pieces or in your complete wholeness by those you feel give you life, inspiration and love?

Are you surrounding yourself with those ready for the intensity you contain within?

Are you too much more often than not enough.

Do they tell you that you are beautiful, that you inspire their true nature to continue to surface? Are you in a relationship that drives you forward instead of allowing you to run in place?

Friendships and lovers should fuel your flames, not suffocate them.

I've learned many lessons in my now 30 years of life.
I have learned what I value in myself and what I seek to achieve outside of me.
I've learned, if you are not celebrated and seen, stop holding your breath and enduring.

We endure too much, for too long by those who can not see us. They are the ones who look in the mirror and can't see their own reflection.

This is not your fault.

We always accept what we feel we are worth, in this present moment of our lives.

Luckily, these moments shift daily and so do you.
We are always worth more than we believe we are.
We should always reach beyond what we thought was good enough.

In life, there is mediocre food, plans and sometimes days.
But, love and connection should never be mediocre.
Love should allow you to breathe heavier, deeper and with slow inhales that are infused with passion.

Love should never make you hold your breath and beg for acceptance, validation or sensuality. Those you crave should crave you in all the same hues.

If I could tell my past self anything it would be this:
You are vibrant, multi-colored hues that not everyone will absorb.

Stop enduring for those who are color blind.

Stop apologizing for your hopeless romantic heart.

Your sexual nature, your desire to spread yourself wide open.

Stop explaining why you fall in love quickly.

Stumble into love as my times as you can. Life feels extraordinary when you allow this.

Stop settling for lovers who taste and inhale what they want from you, then run away.
Friendships built on personal gain, comfort and insecurities.

Let them go.

You will be okay, I promise.

We don't celebrate one another enough. We don't exclaim in admiration our love and appreciation for those who are a witness to our lives.

We don't say enough, I see you.
Past your surface and straight to your core, I see you. You don't need to do anything else besides breathe because that is enough.

Our attachments as humans trip us up. We hold on too tightly to those we should let go of.

We watch as they grab a hold of each leg one by one, trying to drown us with them.

We are no longer seen and celebrated, we are held onto for comfort.

We have become security blankets. And security blankets eventually wear out.

 I will no longer be hidden, silenced or kept away from view. Smothered in someone's insecurities. They can keep up with my intensity for life, or let go.

I have decided that I will either be in relationships that celebrate me, or I will walk away and celebrate myself.

I would rather live a life celebrating the world I see alone, rather than living a daily life of mediocre visibility.

I would rather not have love and friendship at all if it wasn't intoxicating, expanding and celebrated into existence.

Britt Johnson

Speaking Your Truth

release your attachments to the outcome

By: Bethany

My stomach twisted into tight knots each morning I woke the days leading up to the moment. I rehearsed the words in my head until I could say them without thinking. I grew fond of an audio meditation titled, "Don't Let Fear Stop You From Speaking Your Truth". I was preparing & giving myself lots of love before a difficult conversation that was overdue. Overdue on my end because of my dislike of confrontation.

Some people don't flinch (or have too much of a hard time) declaring their truth verbally, no matter how harsh or eloquent it might come across. I do, I always have.

This has held me back in many ways - allowing lackluster relationships to linger, being an unhappy employee & not standing up for people, situations & myself when it was desperately needed.

I allowed my truth to represent itself, with a shaky voice I declared my frustrations, but balanced it with respect to the person I was speaking with. This recent confrontation has been a huge mirror into a bolder path I'm taking, giving me a boost & heightened awareness that I must speak my truth. FROM HERE ON OUT.

One vital component of this transformation into someone who says what she needs (or doesn't need) is this sentence.

release yourself from the attachment of outcomes or expectations based on others' behavior.

When speaking your truth, you must be at peace with someone's perception of you. They might think you're a bitch, too direct, selfish or even foolish, but know this is only projection - your truth is a indicator so sacred, it provides an immediate physical & spiritual release once vocalized. That my love, is not selfish. That's allowing your soul to talk.

Unleashing this "soul speak" only carves a more authentic path for you. It releases you from the constraints of what no longer serves you & allowing this is cracking open doors along your journey.

Awakened Women Don't Just "Hook Up"

Recently I've been seeing a number of articles circulating about awakened women and their sex lives/sexuality. Some of these were written by men who experienced these women and thought their world was rocked royally.

So, I thought why not see what flows out through my own perception and experience on this topic.

So here we go......

Awakened women aren't masters at sex, so let's just go ahead and get that out of the way. We aren't all magical creatures who will blow your mind with our high vibe perspectives and conscious communicating under the sheets. We are just confident and observant. We are comfortable in our skin and content with our flaws.

We feel energy flow and we watch body language like it is guiding us into a new light; a new discovery of ourselves. We practice being within the NOW of each soul who we choose to share our bodies with.

We just don't fear, nor give expectation, any power in each new situation. There is no expectation in our minds.

What we most definitely exude is confidence about our bodies and what we desire. Awakened women know these key things about what it means to be a conscious lover:

1. Awakened women are givers and know their worth to receive

Conscious communication with another soul is a give and take. We know that if we want to receive what we give, we have to be verbal and let the person know what we are wanting in all ways. Know one, especially in that state of mind, can read your every thought. They can however be guided by your energy and then your words. Words are there for you to say what you want, what you desire and what you crave in the moment. Awakened women use their words with the their highest intentions in mind.

2. Awakened women see sex as a connection and not just about pleasure

Awakened women know that when two souls entangle themselves together, there is a transmission of energy every single time. Of course we are still human, which means, we let our past and possibly lifetimes of patterns cloud our judgement at times. We own this. There may be a partner we choose that wasn't the best decision at the time but we don't beat ourselves up about. We excuse our poor alignment, sage the shit out of our bodies, go cleanse with a little juicing and some yoga, and we shake that shit off! We like to believe the bad decisions were the best lessons. And we know that if we were in it just for the pleasure, we are more than capable of handling that job alone. (sorry but it's true)

3. Awakened women can feel right through your insecurities

If you have been guided to the energy of an awakened woman by the Universe on some level, mirrored within her own energy; make sure that your confidence about your body image mirrors hers as well. Awakened women have spent hours and hours naked and alone with themselves, dancing around carelessly and staring at that their perfectly imperfect bodies. They know their body may not be what they always wanted, they realize through the course of life that it has changed, but they have come to a place of peace with this. They know that whoever they align with as a lover, that they will always be accepted, received and honored. They know this because that is the energy they are putting out from their being. The Universe will deliver that exact vibration back to them and they are confident of this.

4. Awakened women don't play games or have strings attached

Awakened women know, on some level, when they are aligned with who they are and when they are not. They know that when they are aligned with their highest good, they are not taking on a role of playing games or practicing any kind of manipulation. Awakened women do not use people to band-aide their wounds or pacify their hurting hearts by stepping on yours. So if there is an opportunity to take an encounter to the next level sexually, it is because she feels aligned to you in a way that is a balanced transfer of energy. An awakened woman does not see a soul and imagine what she can get out of them or what will make her feel whole. An awakened woman isn't trying to fill her cup by using another, her cup is already full. She conquered that on her own. She sees you as an encounter for growth, good energy and connection.

Within every woman is an awakened woman, ready to break through from the past that binds her. The conditioning and experiences that may have left her jaded and wounded internally.

She has a past filled with harsh words said by others that left scars of shame. She taught herself to hide her body from the world and her own reflection in the mirror. She became a lover that preferred leaving the lights off. Her inner child is screaming for an embrace that is pure, honest, trust worthy and a reflection of her powerful inner light.

She is not aware, quit yet, that she is what she is seeking. She may still be seeking everything outside of herself to find what she desires in a lover. But she will realize one day, this kind of self love takes painful endings, and hard internal work that is well worth the struggle. She will look back and see all the lovers she took on as a blessing. Her gratitude for all the bullshit will lift her up and push her forward.

If you encounter an awakened woman, watch her carefully.

Watch how she moves, how she carries herself, how she speaks and looks at you with a gaze of contentment. It is not with surface glances, or ego influenced touches. Instead, it is with mindful eyes that stare at you straight from her heart center. To use or mistreat you would mean she is mistreating herself and doing an injustice to both of your souls. With an awakened heart, transparent gaze and tender touch, she will guide you towards her.

Her intentions of connecting are on the highest level humans can connect on.

At the core of every encounter, an awakened woman knows her soul and yours have known each other in many lifetimes. There is a pattern in some form and she aims to feel into this, take it within her being and open herself up to understanding what this may mean. She does not fear the path that the Universe is delivering.

She craves the unfolding of it. The mystery of growth that lies through each new door opened.

The Divine Feminine that has awakened will show you love, that is all. Don't run from this. Let it seep into your aura and take hold of you in all ways. She will feel when your body loses all resistance to her.

An awakened woman will never let you forget this trust in which you have shown her. Let go and let this conscious lover take hold of you.

- Britt Johnson

Mia Hollow quote





Balance or Burnout

You.are.venus. how to balance or handle burnout

BURNOUT

Taking a pay cut, apartment hunting, a whole slew of trips to plan, balancing two small businesses and a full time job has finally catapulted me into a phase of burnout. It's quite interesting to look back on the past few months when I was happily juggling everything with a whirlwind-like grace and composure (I'm a Virgo), now, all I want to do is crash and wallow in a little self-pity (hello, March astrology!).

I am not alone, this happens - especially when we are able to balance so well. We need moments of crashing to only allow room for surrender. This sweet surrender (along with time and healing) will heighten your awareness and grow you in other ways you wouldn't have known without nurturing this burnout.

Easier said than done, so I've been taking these small actions to recover and untangle why the Universe is keeping me still.

- Bethany

ASK YOURSELF THE HARD QUESTIONS WHEN FEELINGS ARE INTENSE
For me, come to challenging people and situations. In these moments, I lean in on personal/soul accountability and ask, "why is this person bothering me, what is that mirroring upon myself?" I answer - usually not the easiest, but unraveling my issues is removing the block to propel me forward.

FIND YOUR THERAPY
I transitioned practicing yoga from my home to a studio. It makes me feel a little out of control, but each time I practice, I feel more connected back to myself and to the other people in the class. Yoga has become my therapy, my frustration outlet, my get-my-ass-in-shape routine that I now couldn't live without. Also, GET OUTSIDE. Allow the stillness of this new Spring season clear your blocks and realign your mind.

LOOK FOR THE SIGNS
There's nothing wrong to ask for some damn guidance or a sign or two to make sure you're on (or not on) the right path. For me, it's the moments of mind-overload when something appears (usually an nature-related) that literally vibrates within my soul "keep still" or "yep, you're right". Brittany has really been my cheerleader on really opening my eyes and being downright demanding that signs (vision, dreams, numerology) show up when we need them.

ASTRO IT UP
Your birth chart, astrology forecasts and moon phases can all play an indicator in energetic shifts and emotions. Curious? Learn more about it all here.

 

bALANCE

I have always been someone who jumps into something headfirst. (I am a Sagittarius Woman) But, my ascending is Libra. (the sign of balance)

I have had to learn over time, with the help of my earthy Virgo friends, that thinking about the process beforehand, can be a pretty good idea. I hate the thought of over thinking things and not allowing flow. But, there is a balance in between spontaneity and over-analyzing.

I have learned in the last two months, thank you Mercury Retrograde (blah), that I hit high peeks of creative flow and then I come down hard. There is no balance within this and I am now present in seeing this. For me it's kind of like eating a dozen cupcakes and then having one hell of a come down an hour later.

I never noticed what this did to my physical body, nor did I slow down enough to see a pattern. I never knew what the signs where, when I wasn't grounded and when I needed to surrender and let things unfold as they should.

I am paying attention now and finding peace within my conscious balancing.

-Britt

QUESTIONS I ASK MYSELF DAILY
Are my decisions coming from a place of pure desire, intention and serving the highest good of my inner being?

Am I choosing to fill my calendar with "to do lists" to keep myself busy and distracted from what is really bothering me?

Am I sharing how I truly feel or silencing myself from fear of how I will be perceived?

Have I been outside grounding in nature and getting enough sun?

*Am I allowing the unfolding and momentum to take place, or am I introducing resistance by pushing against what I desire with force?

* Have I checked in with my body today? Do I hurt anywhere or feel overly exhausted?
Our emotions are the indicators towards our alignment and balance. We should all consistently feel excited, happy, grateful and motivated. Let your body tell you what it needs and honor your truth, always!


Surrender or Panic - The Moments We Have To Just Breathe

As we creep closer and closer to this Full Moon in Virgo, I feel pieces of my past hurts and memories, lifting off my being.

This week I decided to go to a new spa in Oklahoma City called Udånder. A Scandinavian steam and sauna spa that also provides an aromatherapy steam room, dry sauna, polar shower, and herbal soaking tubs.

As soon as I walked into the space, I felt relaxed and centered.

As I stripped down, wrapped my cotton rob around me and slipped my rubber shoes on, I knew I was about to shift my energy.

I began in the Sauna. A 100+ degree box that wrapped me in heat the moment I stepped in. I let my bare skin take in the warmth, laid on my towel and took a giant, deep breath in.

After about 15 minutes, I headed to the polar shower. A cold shower that recharges your body, strips any negative energy, and wakes every dormant cell that needs to be shaken awake.

After the polar shower I stepped into the Aromatherapy Steam Room that is infused with the lung-cleansing oil of Eucalyptus. To say it was intense is an understatement. You step into a room that smells like utopia, but leaves your sense of site debilitated.

You have to step in, navigate with easy, soft steps and just breathe.

As I sat down, I realized I had no other choice but to focus on my breathing. Every few minutes and newly intense push of steam and eucalyptus would fill the room. And just as I silence my mind in mediation, I had to do the same within this steam.

But then I realized that not only was it my mind I had to silence from wondering off, it was the sensations through my body that said, "Get out of here!" (still my mind playing tricks on me) It is the heat that takes over your senses, mixed in with the intense oils and steam.

I learned within a few minutes of sitting there, I either Surrender or Panic- it is my choice.

I sat in there for about 10 minutes, got out and drank a lovely cup of oil-infused water, and sat in a lounge chair in silence. I was thinking about this idea of surrendering or panicking. I was already thinking about how I would describe this to others and incorporate my experience in a comparison for this life we are living.

I have learned so many things within my 30 years of life. And I have realized it is never ending and we will never stop having these monumental realizations.

I have learned just how complicated we make life to be. But in reality, we are meant to take soft, easy steps and just breathe. We have the choice to be guided by our emotions and senses, or overthink situations and panic.

If I would have over thought my experience in that utopia room of Eucalyptus, I would have let my experience be short lived due to my panic. But, I surrendered while also listening when my body said enough.

During this hour of cleansing, I knew that I had just accomplished more than I ever thought I would by stepping foot into Udånder.

The moments in life when we must slow down and breathe, are the monumental ones. When we can take a pause and center our minds within all perspectives; we will align with everything we desire within this life.

I am learning that everything I want and need, is coming into my life within divine timing. So, I choose to silence my panic, surrender, breathe and take in the moments of this beautiful journey as they come.

If you are an Oklahoma native, I would highly suggest you have an experience of cleansing, surrender and rejuvenation at Udånder.

Namaste, Britt





Feminism = Humanism

Bethany Frazier You.Are.Venus. Feminist

By: Bethany

What a word that is so misunderstood. What a word that holds so much power. What a powerless word I once thought it was. What a beautiful and safe word it is now.

In my short 31 years, I have been changed, transcended into ways of thinking, feeling and behavior only by my connections, experiences and reactions.

I was born into a fairly male-dominated society, but really, we all are.

I grew up in ultra-conservative Texas, when my little brother was born, he was the family’s pride and joy, men lead church service and dictated congregation decisions while the women quietly took care of the babies in the nursery. As a teenager, boys recklessly drove jacked up trucks to manifest their power, football was viciously glorified while most girls (including myself) dressed in scarce clothing and layers of makeup to grasp nearly anyone’s attention.

In the middle of my teens, trying to grasp hold of who I was, my own secret sexuality and my obsession for expressing myself through writing (even if no one understood), I was sexually assaulted.

It was during a high school dance and by my “best guy friend”. I was drugged and taken to the girls restroom where I was too drunk and high to yell for help. After someone heard, I was taken to the hospital where he denied the incident. The weeks after, we we’re both sent to reassignment school for drinking at a school function. I kept my mouth shut, my head down and my secret locked away.

I have never wrote those words or shared them beyond 4 people.

My story, the details, the embarrassment and its aftermath might be my own, but this unfortunate tale is same story as any other sister who has experienced assault (finally, our culture is shedding light on these injustices that have been happening for thousands of years).

When this happened, I was 16, but at 30, all the repressed feelings and memories hit me like the crash of a wave carrying sharp shards of steel. Subconsciously, I had held off “dealing” until I was aligned and full of strong feminine energy where I could go back and face the trauma head on.

I'm still working on releasing my anger, facing guilt and empowering my broken body. The cycle is ongoing and knowing that others (millions, really) out there are also "working through it", makes it a little sacred.

In this harsh world of sexual violence, shame and attacks on making decisions about our bodies, let that beautiful and strong feminine authority guide you, with tender exploration to self-love and harnessing power, that my sister, is feminism.

We (women) have been quietly taking up less space, pushing our suffering to the side for the sake of social comfort, become accustomed to male chauvinism in the workplace, suffering domestic violence with little protection from the police, accepting less pay and shitty maternity leave, enduring catcalls while simply walking down the street and have become desensitized as our sisters are trashed or thrown across magazine covers like pieces of sexy playthings.

Feminism has shifted and is no longer the term for hippies, bra-burners or “man haters”. In fact, I despise these terms (okay, I don’t like wearing a bra, who does?) and honestly appreciate the men that have come and gone in my life - my father that raised me with the most sensitive devotion, my brother who exudes strength beyond his awareness and all the guys along the way that have shaped my soul into what it is today.

But let’s get real, our world has been male-dominated from the dawn of time, but there is a shift happening - a quiet and slow shift. Women are sharing their traumas, co-creating with one another, and building awareness and self-love with our littlest generations. On the flipside, the masculine is waking up, disconnecting from the “rough and tough” ideals that are imprinted upon them. We are no longer doe-eyed doormats to our counterparts, we talk about our pain and this world is starting starting to listen.

I’m not a feminist because I was assaulted.
I’m not a feminist because I’m gay.
I’m not a feminist because I’m a woman.
I’m a feminist because I know what it is to not be.  

I wouldn’t trade in my traumas for anything. I needed the intensity of my aches and sharpness of my breaks to lead me to build this powerful soul (scars and all) and share these words.

Recently, the ever-so-wise Brittany said “It’s all about self-love and finding our power as women … We are rising, as women, from the depths of where we’ve been pushed to. It’s not feminism, it’s humanism.”

These words ring in my head, “it’s not feminism, it’s humanism”.
It simply is.

The Beauty in being an Enlightened Vagabond | Airport Confessions

It's the moments of transit that change us, that move us into acceptance and desire.


I have seen and felt, the beautiful moments of growth in places we transit from one location to the next.

It's within the chaos of airports I have experienced emotional meltdowns and beautiful moments of clarity.

I have found myself escaping to the bathroom of a busy airport, while trying to pull my carry-on, backpack and over priced bottle of water into a tiny stall, while releasing tears of anxiety.
I realize within those moments of movement, I am most vulnerable. And then I catch myself surrendering to the moment and not giving a damn who sees me fall a part.

I have felt helplessness, sadness, anxiousness, pure bliss, excitement and contentment in airports and planes. And I have felt all of those emotions within one sitting; one transit between my departure and arrival.
 

I have found myself at the same terminal, at two different moments in my life, experiencing two different outcomes.
I once left LAX with joy and consuming love with all that the Universe provided within my travels. While another time, at the same terminal, I felt heart break and confusion.
 

I have missed flights and sat motionless in delays that lasted hours. In those moments, I realized it was synchronized just right so I could meet specific souls for conversation.

I've ran through airports like a mad woman, trying to find gifts, minutes before the gates closed. I've had meltdowns listening to music while writing my soul out on paper. I've done yoga and meditated while listening to Podcasts as I was looked upon with confusion.


I've watched as families say goodbye with heart breaking kisses and watery eyes.

I've met amazing souls while drinking $9 draft beers.
The explorers, teachers, seekers of love, and those trying to find their way to a place they feel is home.
 

I've secretly been envious of the Welcome Home signs and tearful, passionate Hello's.
I have watched embraces that seem to last for minutes as lovers reconnect, body to body.

I feel such beauty in those moments as their emotions flood over my being.

It's the moments of transit in life that change us, move us and jolt us to remember who we are and what is important.

An epiphany in the same terminal, and return back into a whole new moment in time, changes everything. And if we are paying attention, those moments can shift our whole reality.
 

Life is so much like the container of an airport. We meet every kind of soul that is possible in this life. And we feel and witness every emotion imaginable.

We have a beginning and an ending during each phase; each current path.
We get to choose to stop movement, stay in one place for a long or short period of time.

We choose our desired class and location. And the most important part, we trust in the process.

We trust that this journey we are going on will fly straight, take off without complication, safely get us to where we are going and land us right where we desire to be.


We know that planes crash and there are malfunctions, but we keep flying. We keep returning to those overpriced flights and food because it's worth it. The preparation and struggles are worth it.

The connections, the growth and the experiences we receive are done in a divine way.
 

I travel now with a conscious awareness to open my heart to possibility. I know things may not work out like I imagine, but I ignore those thoughts and keep focused on my plans and desires.

I know at the other end of my journey, my flight and destination; it is filled with true love and happiness.
 

I've learned these beautiful lessons within the mixture of energies of an airport.
And the most important lesson I've learned is the Welcome Home sign and Hello embrace, followed by endless tears, has already happened.

It was the moment I woke up and remembered who I am, my inner power and my strength.

It was the moment I fell in love myself and all that I am.

We are never truly seeking anything that is beyond who we know we are, deep within ourselves.

What we seek is but a mirror of our own soul. The reflection of our own deep love, passionate embraces and moments of pure bliss and clarity.

The next time you travel, be aware of all that you are feeling, seeing and hearing. There are waves of synchronized truths waiting for you to clash into.

-Britt Johnson

Sexual Shame and Trauma: The Deep Seeded Clearing


For the last few months, I have been clearing space in my life for a new cycle; a new year.
This week is my birthday week and with each new birthday, we have the opportunity to start a new year of intentions, aspirations and desires.

For me, 2015 has been about healing and shedding of what no longer serves me. It has been about fully WAKING UP. Traveling and exploring beyond my boundaries. And I have let my words flow through me to release my fear of vulnerability ( different than transparency) and judgement.

For the next cycle of my life I will pull within: healing + release, financial abundance, passionate love, creative flow, more travel abroad and spontaneity.

Before I move forward, I must release one last, very deep seeded trauma within my childhood and adolescence. I am not sure I even knew it was so significant until the last few months, and I have been paying attention.

A lot of times we think sexual trauma means you were physically abused in some way. But trauma and shame can come in many different hues and forms.
For me, it came in sexual shaming with the use of fear.

I was around grandparents, whom I love very much for the contrast, that were very strict within the confounds of organized religion. I grew up hearing that sex before marriage was a sin and if you chose to be sexual before then, you would pay the consequences.

I remember thinking about that very deeply as a 10 year old. I thought, I don't want the "Devil" to pay attention to me and God to be angry with me for feeling sexual. I desired a deep connection with a man early on in my life and I knew that was in my future.

I remember consciously shutting my body down, in order to "follow the rules" that I was told.

I believe before this conditioning, I was authentically a sexual human being.
There is a deep seeded awareness within our consciousness that remembers how sex can connect us. It connects us to our true self, unconditional love and acceptance; it connects us to the highest energy possible we can achieve as humans. Over time, society has made this connection taboo, something we can only talk about in private, and even an act solely provided to us for procreation. That is all a bunch of bullshit.

Over many generations this conditioning has continued to stay strong. Within this new cycle of earth, and souls awakening to their true, soul selves; we are beginning to see this mindset weaken. We are beginning to see a new generation of souls embracing who they are through the flow of their bodies, sexuality and voice. It no longer serves our being to feel repressed, closeted or shameful for who we are.

As I carried these shameful, restricting thoughts into my youth, I began to see just how fearful I became of anything sexual.

I wanted to explore my desires but I put all kinds of rules into the equation. I wouldn't kiss a body until a certain age, I wouldn't let them feel me up until this age, and I definitely won't have sex until this age. This was my inner dialogue during my whole childhood.


I took away all of my emotional indicators......I took away my intuition.

That is what conditioning does in our lives. It takes away our inner guidance system that is based on how we feel, emotionally within.
 

I ended up kissing a boy in 7th grade while watching She's All That at the movies. I still can't chew WinterFresh gum because of that first, sloppy, weirdness of a kiss. I explored foreplay at 15, and I had sex when I was 16, a number I picked intentionally.
 

That is when the trauma occurred around sex in my life and why it has taken me years to heal, surrender and feel as though I could unleash my true nature.
 

I fell deep into someone's energy, while thinking it was love, at 15. It took me 9 months to finally let myself surrender and have sex. But by then it was tarnished, unfaithful and I did not feel honored or safe anymore.
 

He had already cheated on me with another, and yet I still convinced myself it was the right thing to do. I believe I felt it would show how much I loved him, wanted him and forgave him. I stopped focusing on my desires and only thought of the desires of another. But it was my body that would take on the consequences, even if my mind could not comprehend that yet.
 

The first time is usually never pleasant anyways, but I took on a tarnished view of worthiness that would affect me for more than a decade to come; I just didn't know it yet. I did not honor myself, my worth and my body by not cutting ties with his deceit. Something I still to this day do not regret because the contrast is a beautiful gift.
 

I have learned, even consented sex can contain sexual trauma. And the conditioning my grandparents showed me of their own fear and views of sexuality, really derailed me for a very long time. My task was to pull myself from these mindsets, views and fear-based conditions.
 

I can say proudly as of right now, I have arrived. I no longer am bound by the fear of my sexual nature. I no longer fear speaking about anything related to sex or my desires within this life around my sexuality. I have forgiven myself for emotionally abusing my body though my choices and actions. I have forgiven my past lover for not honoring my body. He had no real love for his own being, it is the only way he knew how to love then, and I accept him for who he is.
 

I am beginning to understand how all of this affected me for the last 15 years. I am beginning to understand truly how powerful we are in this life, and how every wall can be torn down and burned!

I am still working through what I want, what I desire and what I deserve in this lifetime. I visualize it everyday and I will bring it into my experience, when the universe says it is the right time.

Our beginning stages of sexuality, views about our bodies and our past decisions, do not define who we are now.
 

It is all contrast for what we want and what we don't want. We can heal and grow from anything that has been laid within our path.
I now see this clearly and fully believe, we are all worthy of everything we desire. And it will come as soon as you surrender and let go.

Do not be shameful if you are sexual. Honor your body, be wise who you share it with and know you are in full control of what you do in this life.
 

But never, I repeat never, allow someone to make you feel too sexual, too open or that you desire too much. We came here to desire everything and anything. There is enough desire for 1,000 lifetimes of accomplishments.
 

Know that your first experiences in life towards sex or your body do not define you. Limiting believes about why you are here and who you are, these beliefs can be dissolved away with your passion for growth and love.

Love yourself first, then you will be shown the love you seek.

Namaste, Britt Johnson

The Narcissist and the Little Girl

I believe nothing in life is by chance, by coincidence or by the fault of the stars. I believe our future is in our own hands, by choice and free will.

Alignment is always as it should be, even when we may curse the Universe for the pain it causes.

Before I was born into this life, I knew exactly what I was capable of enduring. We all know what can can handle, before we step into this journey.
I knew I was capable of unwavering forgiveness, love, loyalty and I would develop a noticeable layer of thick skin.

I chose to be born, raised and loosely embraced, by a narcissistic father.

What is a narcissist? The dictionary describes this term as a person who is overly self-involved, and often vain and selfish.

But this is not a story about what a book, written in generic definition has to say.
This story is about my life, coping and living in his tortured reality. Breathing in the toxins of manipulation, and existing within a state of emotional warfare.
While also making sure to not lose myself completely in the process.

I was tormented by words, it was never physical abuse.
Negative words about my mother, were spoken as if his hands slapped my face. His hour long cries of a tortured childhood, a women who left him and life path he could not see - it was like being burned slowly by the end of of a cigarette.

I have never been physically abused and I know nothing of domestic violence. I know they are different but I am not sure which one is worse. I may never know the answer to this, and I surely am never going to say which I would prefer.

I know how words feel and I know what broken bones feel like too. I can say in this very moment, I think of words more often than the broken bones I've endured.

I can not recall the pain of those breaks, just as I can not describe childbirth in detail. I would not be able to say what it left negatively within my being.
My broken bones happened because I have the beautiful curse of being adventurous, and I chose to bring life into the world; all events I don't see as negative or replay in my mind.

But those harmful words spoken are imprinted within my memory. And on occasion, life sends waves of events to see what will trigger those dormant wounds. I can recall exactly how I felt in the moments those words were spoken.
Just as we can recall when someone we love dies. I know exactly how those pieces of me within, felt as if they were disappearing slowly.

As an adult, I get to choose what effects me by the length in which I hold onto something. I get to choose whether I will be stuck in a car with someone who cares only about themselves.

I get to choose whether or not I listen to him talk negatively about other souls. I can now stop him in his tracks, bow out and say ENOUGH.

As a child, I had to endure it.

I was just an innocent child and that is when I was the best target. I was impressionable, I was vulnerable, and I loved him. He saw all of this and ran with it.

I had to learn the patterns, decide my own views, attitude and my cooperation within negativity. I had to learn my worth, learn forgiveness and I had to learn the many masks abuse can wear.

I learned the contrast between what felt good and what felt like darkness. I was brain washed in so many ways by my father's illusions of the world.

His illusions of what makes us happy in life, did a number on my perception.

I learned that conditional things make you feel good. But what he neglected to teach me was that it is only temporary.

I watched him constantly seek material things from this life and from others. I watched him use tears for sympathy and fits of rage to sway others towards his needs. I watched lies told in order to seek and maintain control.

And from the outside, I watched a man show me what my future could consist of.

A narcissist is good at making you feel loved and safe. They make you feel as if somehow, they are always thinking of you. They have a genius way of making you question who you are, if your life is even worth anything, and if your views are even valid.

They play the victim and the martyr as if they are professionals at it. And some days, you find yourself crying right along with them.

Somehow you have been convinced the world is a dark, scary place where know one can be trusted. My father often said, life is a bitch and then you die.

He is brilliant at playing the fool and intellectual, all at the same time. He knows how to make you feel sorry for him and confused by his sly way of flipping any story back towards you.

His quick responses would leave me frozen in place. I was a hostage by my father's emotional, Russian Roulette.

Like I said before, I believe we chose to teach each other lessons in this life. I chose him and he chose me, for many reasons.

I now know one of the reasons is forgiveness.

I will forgive him for the lies, the emotional manipulation and his selfishness. I will forgive him for blowing away all of the inheritance my grandparents left him, while I received no support given to me. I will forgive him for not knowing how to be a supportive father. He did the best he could, due to the conditions in which he was taught.

I will do this because it will teach me who I am.

He was not taught how to be selfless. He was taught that there was no need to work for things in this life, they would be handed to him by the skill, of using words to persuade others in his favor.

I was able to pay attention to how he treated others. And I acknowledged that I was not going to be the exception, just because I am his daughter.

Narcissist don't have exceptions for anyone along their path. They are only thinking of what they need, in order to feel content and happy.

I feel I was presented this relationship to also learn boundaries. I can love from a distance, without feeling guilty for doing so.

I do not feel guilty because no matter what I say or do, the circumstance will never change. How he treats me will never change. So if I allow myself to feel guilty, I am only punishing myself.

My advice for those in the same situation is this:

Do not ever allow anyone outside of you, define who you are or make you question your decisions.

Decide how much of your energy you can give, without feeling emotionally assaulted. Set boundaries.

Understand that people do not change for other people, they can only do it for themselves.

When someone shows you who they are, believe them. Even if it is your parent. ( thank you Maya Angelou)

We are not who our parents are, what they have done or what they haven't done. They are here to show us all the things in them we desire, and all the things we choose to not be like. Contrast.

Love them. Love them. Love them. This is the most important.

They are hurting inside and have never found their true voice. Do not feel sorry for them and their choices. Instead, love them for who they are and who they will never be in this life for you.

Once you know who you are and how important your life truly is, validation is not needed. Do not ever let anyone define who you are or what you can achieve.

Britt Johnson

7 Reasons Being a Single Mom will ruin my Son

Over two years ago, I chose to leave a relationship that no longer served me. I chose to grow and discover happiness.

In doing so, my 4 year old son joined the journey. I knew it would serve my son a grave injustice to stay in the unstable whirlwind of our toxic relationship.
 

 I made my decision, coordinated the details and we made the move and everything seemed to flow with ease. Divine timing had our backs and I felt like I was slowly morphing into the human being my soul called me to be.

 I had absolutely no resistance within this decision. My truth needed to be heard with confidence and courage.

 As for our life now, my son and I are flourishing.

We are learning to live with each other as friends, as parent and child, and as two souls here to grow ourselves separately. Some days we fight like brother and sister, but most days we laugh uncontrollably. We are never going to be perfect, but we are going to be happy. We are going to share our feelings, go on adventures, practice being patient, present and kind.

Most days, I am my son’s keeper and on other days, he is mine.

He is now 6 and still doesn't understand the complexities to why his father is removed from our lives. He has a life time of understanding and acceptance of why it happened and how it did. For now, he needs to be a child with a passionate and wild imagination that sets him free from worry.

The lessons he will learn and strength he will gain from being raised by a single parent, will be monumental for his growth.

 Unfortunately, he will also be ruined because of this, and here is why:

 

  • To the future women in my sons life.

 My son never had a choice. He knew early on that I do not apologize for being naked, and neither should he. I showed him our bodies do not define who we are, and we are all beautiful. I told him exactly how he came beautifully out of my body, and he knows just how strong a woman truly is.

He is sensitive, secure within himself and he knows what he wants. My son was raised by a bold woman, and around a massive amount of secure, confident, soulfully beautiful women. He's had a few positive male influences in his life; these confident, respectful men have shown him qualities that have directly left an imprint on him.

So, if you don't love yourself to the core of your being, you may not know my son long.

I have ruined him for your type.

 

  •  He will never fall into societal rhythms.

 Sorry society and all your expectations, but my son will push the boundaries and question all your rules. My son will go forth towards his own rhythm in life, he will not follow or be led. I ruined him this way with my stubborn spirit and soaring heart. He will, mostly likely, never take no for an answer. He will be kind in doing so, but he will push his way through all that may bind him.

 

  • Sorry corporate world, my son probably won't vibe with you.

 My son has learned a lot through my journey, through both my negative and positive traits. What he will constantly see within my teachings (and mistakes), is the illusion that lies within what we feel we need to do in life, versus what our soul calls for us to do. A 40 hour work week, sitting at a cold desk, in an environment that takes your energy, to pay for a home you're rarely in; will probably not be my son's cup of tea.

 

  • My sons color will not define his presence.

 My son was taught early on that the color of our skin has absolutely nothing to do with the substance of our soul.

He will not fall into the stereotype society projects African American men to be. His friends and companions will consist of all nationalities. He will dress in accordance to what best represents who he is, not a way the world wants him to dress. He will express himself fully by his own doing.

I have ruined him for you fashion marketing and corporate chains.

 

  • My son will buy organic oils and healing foods.

 My son will know all the essential oils he needs to cure any ailment. So sorry pharmaceutical companies, I ruined him for you. He has been taking peppermint, rosemary and lavender baths since he was 3, and he knows that coconut oil is a miracle worker.

He will not judge others for taking narcotics or eating fatty foods, he still will do so on occasion.

But he will not fall into the grips of feeding himself addictions for others to profit.

 

  • My son will design is own Sadhana.

 Since my son was little, he knows when there is a Full Moon, New Moon, and Harvest Moon.

He knows when Summer Solstice is and Spring Equinox. He is secure enough to wear flowers in his hair, throw intentions into the fire, and he knows what Sage is for. When sharing with him what I practiced, I was still mindful in giving him room to follow his own path. He will go into the direction that feels right within his soul. Again, sorry to any organized communities/ religion.

 My son will appreciate your views, and respect what you believe in. But you will have no chance in converting him.

 

  • My son will believe in Growth and Love. Period.

 My son has been taught his whole life that we should love each other unconditionally. So if you try and pull him into drama, or form a group that is purely based on using fear as a tool; he will have nothing to do with you.

My son was taught that everyone has their own path and no one is doing it wrong. We each came here to form our own dance, and learn our own lessons. He will be taught, there is no wrong way to ride this ride we call life.

 To my beautiful Indigo child:

I will annoy you, I will embarrass you, I will tell you when you are wrong, I will tell you every day you are magical, and I will love you in this life unconditionally. I promise to keep my word on everything I have written.

And I promise to ruin you for the individuals in the world who want to define you.

Pinky swear, Momma

Britt Johnson



You do not need a Guru to find your own path. You Are The Path.

I love Wayne Dyer, Alan Watts, Buddha, Osho and Ghandi. I listen to the channeled messages of Abraham Hicks and Kyron. I follow Kaypacha, Kelley Rosano, and of course my momma Karla Gandy, for Astrology advise and guidance. I find Ashrams to be extremely healing and the feeling of community pulls me in like a moth to a flame.

But I can not understand how some of these individuals have become such a catalyst, and even a necessity for some to excel in this life. I just can not relate to shrines full of images of other human beings. Are they/were they more ascended in some ways, yes. But this was all done by the allowance of their inner work and this happened over years and years of learning, listening and studying.

They found self love and desire first and then became teachers.

The people I have stated had mentors and guidance, but they did not kneel at alters for their channeled messages and higher consciousness. They worked on themselves and felt as though ascension was an inside job. They cleared their channel within and let go of resistance.

They did not call themselves masters. And each one will always say, growth is infinite and we can not possibly get all we want done in one lifetime.

I grew up torn between two house holds.
The Church of Christ and the Catholic Church or as I like to call them, Oil and Water.
To me, there is no difference in the rituals they both take on. One kneels in front of Mother Mary and the other holds Jesus on their alter. Both looking for salvation outside of themselves. Both calling God by different names but yet feeling as if one way to "get there" is better than the other. Oh yes, I love Jesus but do I think he will came back and save us, absolutely not. He was a messenger of Love, not a religion. We are here to save ourselves.

So when I see shrines, there is a part of me that wants to back away and scrunch my forehead up real tight. In Bali I came across beautiful arrangements of flowers, leaves, incense and fruit, all in honoring of God (Source) and Gaia (Mother Earth). To me, these alters represent our offerings back to this beautiful Mother Earth that provides our well being. There aren't images of human beings at these alters. This feels right to me.

Within the knowledge of all those who we seek for guidance, the base of their teachings comes down to one key aspect, LOVE.

Love should not have to be earned, it does not cost money and it should never have strings attached. Love should be seen within ourselves and within each other, equally. We came from unconditional love and now we are here to acquire that within, to remember how powerful we are. (As within so without)

Just because this is something I can not relate too, practice or fully understand, does NOT mean I think it is wrong. I believe that every path is the right path. It is uniquely yours and you should always be in full control of your destiny. From my perspective, as I see the separation occurring by organized religion, race and gender, I also see the separation we do to our inner being by idolizing another. I watch those around me seek answers by the women or men who came to clear a path, not be "The Path".

YOU ARE IT.....YOU are the Alan Watts, Wayne Dyer or Ghandi. You can ascend as far as you want to ascend. We are all able to tap into the same infinite knowledge because we all came from the same Universe.

Those we grasp onto for knowledge and "salvation", did not ever say they were the way to enlightenment and happiness. I feel as though we some how missed the point.

"Anyone who tells you he has some way of leading you to spiritual enlightenment is like someone who picks your pocket and sells you your own watch". -Alan Watts

My Vulnerabilty will help Heal my Wounds

I am healing.

From a love that came and left, from wounds still evident from childhood and from the torment and harsh words I once made this beautiful body endure.

I am at a place within my journey where I am able to help others by the level of growth I have accomplished, but I am fully able to accept and say, that there is still healing to be done within me. Until death I know I will continue healing myself and others within this ever changing life.

I have decided that my vulnerability, my authenticity and my ever so evident transparency; will help heal my pain.

I have decided to use my non-filtered mind and mouth, for my highest good and not against me. I will use my words to share my inner most desires and feelings, and not my projections.

I recently took a trip to meet new souls, explore places I had not seen and see old friends. I had no idea the transition, the pain and the remembrance I was about to experience. I became triggered by emotions I had not yet healed from.

I felt sad, angry, scared and vulnerable.

I questioned everything about myself, my journey and my desires in this life. It was as if I traveled to the core of past life pains and a sadness I am still experiencing in this life. I left my home with a routine that was healing me a little bit at a time.

I left my place of comfort and threw myself into the fire.

I was in the extreme, fast paced energy of Southern California, feeling everything. And when I say everything, I mean it. The empath in my veins was screaming to run away, grab a hold of something that makes me feel safe! My inner child was screaming to be held or JUST RUN!

But I couldn't run away. All I could do was breathe, accept what was happening and work my way through it, not around it.

So far in this life, I have only traveled to places that made me feel adventurous, safe, free and willing to venture into the unknown.

I realize now that is was my alignment and energy that I am currently swimming in. It is the experience I am going through currently of letting go of the things I wanted to skip through, ignore or act like I was moving through quickly.

The Universe just doesn't allow "Drive-Through Healing".

There are no easy routes or escape plans for healing. I have to go straight through for growth to occur. I have to accept what is for now, understand and embrace everything I am feeling and just let go.

So, as I work through the healing of new shifts and changes occurring within my life right now, I am staying as grounded as possible. Speaking when I feel called and being mindful when I must sit still and be the student.

I am now just allowing life to show itself to me and have as little participation as possible. I am releasing my desires, pain and future endeavors to appear in due time. I have set my intentions and manifestations in motion and have full faith the things I desire will appear.

I will be challenging myself to a 30 Day Vulnerability Challenge. JOIN ME if you feel called to share the things that no longer serve your inner being. #30DayVulnerabilityChallenge

On days when I need to align myself with a little music, a little Trevor Hall will do the trick.:)

#TrevorHall&NahkoForLife

Britt Johnson

 

Evolving, Enlightenment WITH A Job that holds you back

By: Bethany + Britt

You.are.venus. blog unhappy in a job or career advice

"It was good, it kept me busy."

My mother's words (these words) echo as we end our long distance call. She recently landed a new job and was reflecting upon her past position which worked her until thankless late hours (every night, including weekends) for the past 6 years. Her new job is now allowing her flexibility to take care of my sick grandfather and keep grounded with many changes affecting her life.

"It kept me busy"

I don't ever want to be ... busy.

I want to spend my waking hours doing something that brings me discovery, growth and also balances my personal life.

As divine timing would have it, the past two weeks (same time frame my mother changed jobs) I quit my idle job, at the same time my girlfriend's company (who had filed for bankruptcy and bought out by another corporation) declined an offer the same unproductive position (same pay, same role).  Synchronicity with others is inevitable if you let it happen naturally, don't agitate it until that boost of "okay, let's take action" happens. Then action IS taken.

Sitting at a desk, starting computer screen, under glaring fluorescent lights, in a highly misogynistic & controlling environment weighed down part of my soul. Each day, while growing more humble and enlightened on the inside and in my personal life, the 8 long hours I spent at work didn't reflect this.

That little voice in my head would pipe in, "This doesn't match who you are anymore, it doesn't serve you".  And in times I felt defeated, threatened and exhausted, that same voice would gently declare, "This isn't permanent. Change is coming."

That inner voice led me and two weeks ago, something came over me, I peaked at a job posting board, found a small-based business that I already had connections with (and genuine interest in), so emailed my resume and landed the job the next day after an interview.

My story of finding my enlightened self in a stagnant (and even manipulative) work environment is common. Too common.

It's reality versus desire.
Stability versus dreams.
Security versus change.

Add on a mortgage, children, taking care of an elderly parent or personal illness and this battle is heightened tenfold.

How do we change the course of our unhappy work lives to a position that means something to our soul and balances our personal world? I don't have an all-knowing answer, but what I'm learning (and what has manifested) is happy soul = happy roles. Here are some ideas on how to do this:

1. Be Specific

Most people don't change their course to a better one without having an idea of what they want; what a new direction will look and feel like. Create the ideal job or work situation in your mind, write about it, daydream about it, manifest it into existence. For example, the past month, I grew slightly envious of seeing people on morning runs on the way to my downtown office. I thought "this is what I want, I want to have time for myself in the mornings, I want to run like this!" as the Universe heard my daily desire, it delivered. Now my new workday starts at 11am so I'll be running and getting my yoga on as I've always wanted.

2. Love yourself enough to know you deserve better

Clear blocks that are holding you back and free yourself from any limiting beliefs because when you love your soul, body and ways of thinking, you will literally breathe new opportunity and connections into your life. This is not ego but self-love (know the difference because there is). If your drive is ego-fulfilling then your path will serve only the ego and not the whole self and I promise you'll know the difference.  Deserving better also means letting go of those relationships that hold you stalemate and any toxic energy circulating in your workplace that leads to harmful energy flows or blocks. Cutting cords from those things that don't serve your soul or new opportunity are vital to letting new and exciting possibilities.

3. Find things to get to you where you want to be

I never graduated college because I (along with the majority of 20-somethings) didn't know what I really wanted to do or who I even was. Luckily, I blazed through coursework and real-life curriculum on my own by signing up for workshops, reading and researching things I was truly interested in and taking risks by starting my own ventures while building a line of connections and resources along the way.  I listened to my inner voice when it pulled me to take a doula workshop or when I started blogging and I listened to it again when I launched an all-natural apothecary line. I'm listening to it again as I've accepted a new position that will allow me to put all these accumulated skills and aspects I love and am good at (connecting, serving and driving traffic) into a full time position.

4. Pull support from all directions

Follow your astrology forecasts, practice Visualization, carry or meditate with crystals that enhances new opportunities (Citrine is my favorite). If you need an astrologer's forecast to guide you when to keep your ears open then do it! Put it all out there and let it carve a path of reality for you. When you get the itch to look for something else, say what you want out loud (however the words come to you). The power of your intentions and the methods you practice used to strengthen them will work to breathe it into existence. Think of what you desire and then align with those desires by letting go. By letting the Universe take over, there is less resistance towards that desire. We desire things because we want to feel good (that's the basis of what we truly want) and to live the lives we have always imagined, we have to be happy and content within before any "conditional" conquest will truly fulfill us.

5. Cool it, timing is everything

Let things work the way they're intended to. Don't fester and don't settle for an "easy ticket" job just to get you out of the one you don't like. This is important during manifestation. A Course in Miracles teaches: "Those who are certain of the outcome can afford to wait and wait without anxiety." A frenzied mind is one that cannot balance clearing blocks, focus on visualization or trust that the Universe will provide (all in the right time). Understanding and working through agitation is also extremely important as you'll carry it through to your next role if not combated.


An analogy I will hold onto until death is this: When we are conceived, our bodies are being formed with precision, timing and ease. Within that 9 months of gestation, we are not worried or bothered by what color our eyes should be, the length in which we should grow or color of our skin. Instead, we are letting Source, Creator, the Universe - transform our being and align us to that in which is intended. We let go, and in turn, everything happens without any resistance.

So, the same is to be said for the next 90 years of your life. Things don't go into an undesirable direction until we begin getting in our own way. We put our own agenda into the mix and carve a path of unwanted obstacles. We create resistance by false expectations of ourselves or by listening to the expectations towards our path by those around us.

When you desire something into the core of your being, it is already on its way. Trust in this!

In all aspects of our lives we want the best possible outcomes. Let the job you have always wanted, the lover you desire to be with or the place you have always dreamed of living come to you when you are aligned and ready. Not a moment sooner.

Stop renewing your relationship with conditions you don't want.

Believe all that you are seeking is just around the corner.

Believe you are worth it all.