It’s been a hell of a summer. And by that I mean there were pieces that really felt like hell and there were parts that were super exciting and exhilarating. We had a Venus retrograde (among other intense planetary influences). A retrograde is when a planet appears to be moving backward in the sky and that effects us down here on the earth by forcing us to turn backward in our perspectives a bit and evaluate old ground. Old patterns, old ideas and in the case of Venus, old relationships or old ways of being in relationship (Venus is the ruling planet of relationships). So depending on where this retrograde was in our personal charts, we were all dealing with different versions of relationship inspection (relationships with health, employment, money, home, intimate relationship, parents, kids etc.) and frankly, I think it’s safe to say that we all went through the ringer.
To give you a personal example, I got married this summer. The whole extravaganza really brought up some stuff for me to look at! This is my second marriage so up for review for me, were all of my ideas about what it means to be married. Because this is my second time down the aisle I had to look at the prejudices I'd developed and my actual anger and resentment around the institution of marriage. I’ve been really pissed off that my first marriage ended in divorce and my inner critic has been diligent in reminding me that its demise was all my fault. It’s been an irritating little grain of sand in my seashell for years now and I have all these post divorce belief patterns like: marriages fail, marriages are too confining, weddings are just unnecessarily expensive parties, what’s the point? I don't want to be committed in that way again, and the biggie- holy shit what if I fuck this one up too?
It’s hard to admit to yourself that you feel like a loser in one part of your life and then actually do the work that it takes to over-ride that judgement. Judgements (especially those we have of ourselves) can be really addictive. Even though the chemical rush we get from hating ourselves doesn’t feel good, it’s a chemical rush nonetheless and that icky rush quickly becomes a habit. Hating ourselves then becomes something we do on autopilot when we’re bored or anxious or angry- we hardly even notice we're doing it! This makes it really hard to let go and to change. Not only does it take becoming conscious about the judgements, but breaking the habit of self judging also shakes our sense of self. Who are we if we aren’t the person that thinks they’re a huge fuck up?
So how do you start shifting old belief patterns? First of all you need to become aware of what your self judgements are. The easiest way to do this is to begin to pay attention to the way your body feels as you're going about your day. Notice when you feel physical discomfort, especially in your organs. This is a signal that you're telling yourself some sort of lie. Lies hurt, the truth does not. In my case, I noticed that when I was working on wedding arrangements, my heart would start racing and my adrenal glands would start to ache. When I checked in with that discomfort, I began to unearth so many of the judgements I had around marriage and feeling like a failure.
In becoming aware of the judgements, I was able to hold them out and examine them. It really opened me up to feeling the immense love that was being clouded by all that fear and judgement. I saw that the self hatred was just trying to protect the part of me that’s scared to love deeply, for fear of messing it up. So being forced to evaluate my old ideas created the portal I needed to get the clarity on what I really wanted, which is freedom. Freedom to love hard and freedom to drop my expectations of perfection. Wow!
So as a continuing practice, when my old patterning of anxiety and lack of trust shows up (and feels absolutely awful in my body) I use that discomfort as my alarm bell telling me that it’s time to override it with the wisdom of my higher self, and then I actually follow that guidance (because it feels good in my body to do so, it feels relaxing and empowering). It feels so much better to relate to yourself from a place of wisdom instead of anxiety and judgement.
I encourage you to practice this in your own life. We’re still in the shadow of this Venus retrograde and will be until Oct. 9 so there’s still a settling of the shifts you've made. Use this as a window to consciously practice being that shift. Pay attention to the way you speak to yourself and the things you tell yourself and the way they make your body feel. Regardless of where this retrograde was in your personal chart, we’re all in perpetual relationship with ourselves and have some healing to do. Let that relationship feel good and be good.
And as always, if you want to work on relationship or any other pieces in more depth, I do have openings in my schedule for a few more private clients. You can click here and fill out the form at the bottom of the page to schedule a free Clarity Call. This way we can see if we're a good fit for each other.