“It is important to have one’s own personal space. (Especially for women who are brought up to share everything we have with our loved ones.) The martyr in us can sacrifice to the point that sometimes we are self-righteous, overbearing and demanding and that’s not healthy or authentic. Setting boundaries and making time for yourself is like telling the world that if you are well cared for, everyone around you will be too.” —Virginia Woolf in A Room of One’s Own
Creating your Sacred Space and using it is the first tool of Self-Care
Can you relate to what Virginia Woolf is saying? She points out how we as women can easily get stuck in giving too much of ourselves out of habit and then how it backfires on us. We can only give so much before we burn out or get depleted. Creating Sacred Space is the first step towards learning to monitor where you are in your “giving quotient” and how you can learn to check-in and be present to your own needs for time alone, setting boundaries, taking space with your loved ones or others in your life and work.
Melissa Burch,( 2012) and others have named this “Sacred Space” because it is a place where you can learn about your own inner gifts as a woman and learn how to nurture them. This is a sacred process of getting to know yourself more deeply. This begins to change how you feel about yourself by caring for yourself with these behaviors and actions.
Here are 8 Steps for Creating Sacred Space:
1. Find a private space for yourself in your home
2. Light a Candle
3. Bring in Special Objects that awaken your heart and your emotional self. Feel free to add anything that has special meaning to you: a photograph of a loved one, flowers, a book that inspires you.
4. Get a journal and pen handy to write.
5. Set aside a regular time each day to visit your Sacred Space —protect your time there.
6. When there, sit or move in silence focusing on your inner self. Use a mindful meditation or personal practice like prayer that allows you to be quiet and listen inside.
(You can use a special meditation you have received from one of my women’s groups here in mp3 format)
7. Anchor your energies through the 4 Elements or whichever element feels strongest to you:
The 4 Elements, Earth, Air, Water, Fire are ancient themes which connect you to morphic fields, bring you closer to Oneness, the Source, the power of the Universe (God). Your Larger Self and your person power can be felt when you create this anchoring. Here’s ways to represent these 4 directions:
East:Fire. A candle symbolizes fire in the East, as well as Spirit and Illumination. Bringing forth the light from within yourself; a releasing of the darkness within —your own internal struggles—inspiring us to move forward, to evolve.
West: Water. A bowl of water symbolizes emotions, transforming deep feelings, introspection, clarity, seeing what is hidden.
North: Air. Incense symbolizes air in the North, wisdom, working on belief systems, learning spiritual truths, aiming towards grace.
South:Earth. A crystal symbolizes Earth in the South, the physical body, healing, manifesting into physical reality, becoming more active in the world.
8. Create an Altar using these 4 Elements and special objects – Creating a Ritual
An Altar is a special place that you have put together that has meaning for you where you come to daily for your ritual of connecting with your deeper self.
You can look on Pinterest four some amazing photos where people have built Altars in their closets and other unique places. If you are lucky to have a special room of your own, that’s even better.
(Parts of this were taken from The Four Methods of Journal Writing: Finding Yourself through Memoir: a Spiritual Practice & Ritual for the Soul by Melissa Burch, 2012, NY: New Memoir Press )
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