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My Rude (Royal) Awakening

This is a different kind of post for me. I don’t usually do full book reviews, but this book calls for an exception and you’ll see why…

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I posted the above image on Instagram last week with this caption:

“When a book is so life changing Kindle just isn’t good enough and you need it in print too. Mind and heart blown by my most recent read. Will share a bit about it in a blog next week.
Lots of tears and tender feels that I don’t usually feel like shame, regret, and embarrassment.
Realizing something you didn’t know you didn’t know your whole life can be pretty shocking. Thankful for teachers, self-forgiveness and Divine timing.”

WHAT’S THE BOOK??!! People wanted to know.

It’s The Queen’s Code by Alison Armstrong. One of the reasons I got so much out of it is the wisdom is presented in story form rather than being purely instructional. This style really allowed me to see myself in the main characters and feel what pieces were true for me.

The funny/tragic/perfect thing is, it had been sitting there in my Kindle queue, like a hunk of gold buried in the dirt, just a few days short of a whole entire year. I remember downloading it after I listened to her audio The Amazing Development of Men, which some of you have probably heard me reference before in podcast interviews.

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We’re all on unique journeys. We walk certain paths, learn and unlearn new and old truths, forget and remember, progress and regress, breakthrough and breakdown, fall on our faces and rise up each time wiser than before. Ultimately with every leg of the adventure we get closer to personal truth, power, freedom and unconditional love – and that’s why we keep going.

If you’re someone for whom relationships with men are a significant, recurring or unavoidable part of your journey, I hope this is useful by either providing fresh insight or confirming that you’ve already got the Queen thing down.

While I’m not up for delving into the inner workings of my personal experience, after learning what I learned it feels borderline irresponsible not to share. It also feels good to own up to stumbling into and unraveling a HUGE personal blind spot. And of course, I make no assumptions that because this material had a significant impact on me, it will resonate for you.

As always I encourage you to think, feel, and choose for yourself.

THE LESSONS THAT BLEW MY MIND AND HEART

1. Some women turn frogs into princes. Other women turn princes into frogs.

Alison Armstrong calls this Frog Farming and although the description is a bit generalized, I immediately remembered all the times and all the ways I’d done this in relationships.

This excerpt explains a bit more,

“She realized every man she’d known began as some flavor of Prince Charming. And every man ended up the same: distant, defensive, and uncommunicative. She assumed the prince was for show, and the frog was their true nature being revealed. What if they actually were Princes? And something I did changed them? Far from needing to dodge blame, Kimberlee was relieved to think she might be the cause of how men treated her. If she was bringing out the worst in men, she could probably stop. She’d tried changing men; it had to be easier to change herself.”

2. The MANY ways women emasculate men.

Emasculating men is one of the main ways women Frog Farm. This part was particularly painful for me as I’ve done so many of these having no idea about the potential for negative impact! In some cases like “Don’t need them for anything important to you,” I even thought I was doing something right. My view on that choice has certainly shifted.

-Withholding appreciation, admiration, participation, sex.
-Don’t let them impress you.
-Compare unfavorably – be impressed by someone else.
-Don’t trust them.
-Assume insincerity.
-Don’t need them for anything important to you.
-Be disinterested in their passions.
-Complain.
-Expect them to act the same as girls/women.
-Demean their earning abilities.
-Blow off their suggestions and ideas.
-Ignore them.
-Criticize them.
-Interrupt them.
-Be impatient.
-Roll your eyes.
-Tsk or scoffing sounds.
-Take over something you have them to do.
-Demean their virility.
-Shut down their story telling.

3. How we view our needs – asking vs demanding and the ever-inviting art of receiving.

I posted about this on Facebook the other day to do a little research and get a gauge of where people stand on this. I was also curious to see how many people already understand this point as Alison Armstrong presents it. You can see the outcome of my research in the post comments here.

Here are some helpful passages in the book that I highlighted in this section:

“Looking at your needs, from what they would allow you to be in the future, will put you in the point of view to receive them instead of demand them…I will put this simply. Although feminism and the information age, and reliable birth control, have provided enormous opportunities for women, they have not necessarily resulted in women getting more of what they need.”

“Most women have become self-sufficient in regards to their needs. When they discover a need, they provide it for themselves. That works fine –if it’s something you can give yourself…When women discover they have needs that must come from another –for love, attention, touch, help — they can be stymied. They will often try to talk themselves out of it. If they cannot, next they will try to figure out who owes that to them, because of something they did for that person or sacrificed for that person. In other words, they will try to figure out how they deserve it. And from whom they should demand it.”

And she goes on to give great examples of the two potential responses to this “deserving and demanding” dilemma which are Resist or Submit saying, “The demand itself eliminates any possibility of giving.”

This insight invited me to reconfigure what felt like a HUGE part of my personal operating system. I thought being independent and self-sufficient meant not being “needy” but there’s a big difference, which she explains, between being needy/helpless and allowing others to support you.

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That’s what I wanted to share for now. Perhaps another time when my experience isn’t so fresh I’ll write another post to let you know how the integrating process of all this information went. In the mean time…

HOW WAS READING THAT FOR YOU?
If you haven’t read the whole book and don’t having complete context, you may have some questions or your responses may not be fully formed yet, but I’m curious nonetheless. And of course if you have read the book, I’d love to know about your experience. Let me know in the comments or come on over to the private Facebook group and let me know there.

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My Rude (Royal) Awakening