Welcome to Trust Your Sacred Feminine Flow and my Divine Feminine Awakening Series.
This series provides emerging wisdom from my own journey of feminine awakening delivered episode by episode in real-time over the last 5 years. Through my present-day lens, I’ve chosen the most vital topics to revisit with you.
My intention is to offer you wisdom, tools, and landmarks for your own journey of awakening.
This re-released episode is from September 2018.
Relationship challenges provide some of our greatest catalysts for awakening our personal sovereignty. They offer us the opportunity to transform the disempowered patterns of people-pleasing, self-betrayal, and codependency into solid, sovereign self-love, honoring, and empowerment.
Listen in for a deep exploration into the transformation from disempowering relationship agreements to awakening soul contracts on our path to Sovereignty.
Included is a powerful practice to shift beyond resentment and anger to loving empowerment in your most challenging relationships.
Also discussed in this episode:
- How to recognize when relationship agreements
- The dynamics and underlying fears in our relationship agreements
- The Journey by Mary Oliver
- The foundation and purpose of our Soul Contracts
- How to find your sovereignty in your most challenging relationships.
Listen to Relationships as a catalyst for Sovereignty by clicking the play button on the audio player below.
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Read the Full Transcript Here:
Welcome to Trust your Sacred Feminine Flow. I’m your host, Joni Advent Maher. I’m a mystic spiritual midwife and a transformational guide. So delighted to be with you today. Today, I want to talk to you about relationships.
So as we’re being called to grow and step into our sovereignty, as women, much of that growth is going to occur in the context of our relationships. And as we know, that is not always a simple and easy thing – to be in relationship. So that’s why it felt important to me to talk about the way that the complexity or the challenges or the messiness that can occur in relationships often is our portal to growing into our sovereignty. So I want to start talking a little bit about the progression of that growth and how that happens. So as we form early relationships, it’s not uncommon for us to enter into what I call relationship agreements.
And what I mean by that is those are unspoken contracts or agreements we have with the people in our lives, whether it be parents or children or partners that goes something like this, I will take care of you by behaving in these ways so that you will take care of me by behaving in these other ways. So what do I mean by that? Well, I’ll give you an example.
So I grew up believing that it was my job to take care of my father’s feelings. I thought it was my job to make him look good and to feel good about himself and in exchange for that, I received his love and we had a special bond because of it because I understood him like no one else did. And I looked after him like no one else did. So it’s those kinds of things. And relationship agreements are often unspoken and frequently they’re unconscious.
And the fact of the matter is they are always based in a mutual fear, a mutual fear about who we are, about what we’re capable of, about what we deserve, about how life is, about how we’ll be provided for. So some examples are things like, I’ll carry the hard feelings that you don’t want to feel for you. I’ll stay small and disempowered so you don’t have to be able to feel threatened or uncomfortable or I’ll take charge and be in control of things so you don’t have to feel insecure or afraid or incompetent. We’ll have a special relationship. You’ll always be my special person. The one who never leaves me. And again, these agreements are always based in some form of fear and both sides of the equation are always receiving something from the agreement. Sometimes it may be safety, it may be love, or it may be protection.
It could be an affirmation or a bolstering of a sense of self. And the fact of the matter is, is these relationship agreements always limit our growth and our capacity to be our true selves because they are not grounded in the truth. They’re grounded in illusion. And the fact of the matter is, is we can stay caught up in our relationship agreements for a long, long time. And whether you look at it as family roles, or this is just the way we relate to each other, it becomes a dance in our lives. And for example, as I shared with you about my father and my relationship with him and the agreement, unspoken agreement I had with him, it went on to shape all my relationships with men that came after that. So it’s not uncommon that early in our growth process, we are starting to feel the rub or the chafe of those agreements.
We’re starting to feel the way that they are holding us back and limiting us. And as we start to grow and change sooner or later, we have to face those relationship agreements and let them go. That can be hugely freeing and it can make things a little messier for a time.
So I want to share one of my favorite Mary Oliver poems with you, which speaks to this very phenomenon. And it’s called The Journey by Mary Oliver.
One day, you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
their bad advice –
Though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
Though the wind pried
with stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voice behind,
the stars began to burn,
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do –
determined to save
the only life you could save.
Mary Oliver, The Journey.
So when we take the step out of our relationship agreements, things can get messy because we’ve been doing this dance together for so long. And those that we are in relationship with can start to revolt and try and pull us back to that. Because even as we talked about in last month’s recording on staying true to yourself, even when we do ultimately what’s best for us, which we know serves the whole, we’re not always getting thank you notes from the people in our lives when we changed the dance that we’d been doing for years and decades, and maybe even a lifetime, because as we may be stepping on more solid ground, as we come into our truth, and as we’ve been growing, when we step out of the dance, it leaves others to tend to and address and deal with their own emotions, their own insecurity, their own places of fear and stuckness. And nobody is consciously excited and happy for that, which is why we get the pushback and the flack.
But here’s the thing Beloved, at a deeper level, your soul and their soul, your higher self and their higher self are working together. They’re working together to free both of you, to liberate both of you from the illusion and how that happens is through something I call a soul contract.
So those people in our lives, who we entered the dance with, who we entered the agreement with on a deeper level, we have a contract that says, I am going to support you in freeing yourself in these ways. And you are going to support me in freeing myself in these other ways. And because these soul contracts are coming from our Higher Self they are based in love and they are based in the truth of who we are ultimately and what we are capable of and what the truth, the deepest level of truth is about life. And so they are invitations to awaken, to embody the truth of who we really are. That’s what we’re here for. And while there may be relationships that are loving and supportive and look like happily ever after, oftentimes when we have a deeper soul agreement to really work with another being, to liberate ourselves and each other mutually, it can often look quite messy.
It can often be quite challenging. It can often be the person that you would love to find a way to just walk away from. But when we have this deeper work to do together, there’s a way in which there is this bond or this bind that keeps us connected because it’s like trying to walk through the eye of the needle. We cannot resolve the situation with a given soul or a given person until we move through what it is that we have contracted to do with them. So for example, there may be someone in your life that has agreed to support you in claiming your power. There may be someone in your life that has agreed to support you in claiming your self worth and your self love and in recognizing your inherent value. And the fact of the matter is, is this is probably not the person who’s telling you that you’re powerful or telling you that you’re lovable, but in fact, quite the opposite.
It’s the person that is provoking you to dig deep into your growth and transformation process, to really go for it and find the truth within yourself. The truth that knows your value, that knows that you are lovable. And that feels that sense of potency and power arriving at that state often requires walking through trial and challenge. And for many of us, those trials and challenges happen in the context of relationship. So I bring this up today because having an understanding of this deeper context can bring not only peace of mind, but a new perspective on how to address or deal with relational conflict or triggers in relationship. So I want to talk specifically about those times when you’re aware of resentment or feeling like a victim, that is something that you need to pay attention to because it’s an indication that you are not connected to your sovereignty. And that is, I don’t bring that up as a matter of blame. It’s just to say that there needs to be deeper attention to what’s going on within the context of relationship. There’s some element of truth that needs to be addressed. That is going unaddressed.
Sometimes it is, as we’ve talked about many times, it’s about using your voice and speaking up for yourself. Sometimes it is about leaving a relationship. Sometimes it is about making a stand to change the dynamics of things. And sometimes if you’re feeling persecuted or victimized by the dynamic in a relationship, if you can have an understanding of what the soul contract is, it can help ground you in your seat of power. It can give you a whole different way of engaging with this person that is freeing and liberating. That is not about leaving the relationship, although sometimes we are called to take that step and leave the relationship. But here’s the thing, whether you are called to stay or leave, whatever the choice, when you are coming into that deeper alignment with the soul level need that need, which is what that soul contract is there to support and address, you will start to feel a sense of solidity, a sense of clarity, a sense of truth and expansion in your choice, even though you might be feeling shaky or pulled way, way out of your comfort zone.
So if you’re wondering what you can do, when you find yourself in that place of resentment or feeling victimized, what you can do to start to shift back to that more empowered, empowered place to that place of rootedness in your sovereignty, I have a brief practice for you that has worked wonders in my own life. And it’s a portion of a deeper practice that I have worked with for myself and with clients that is called Inner Planes work, which is a kind of process that occurs when we can dialogue and relate with someone else in our life at the deeper level of the soul. But this is a portion of that, that you can do on your own.
So you begin the practice by saying the person’s name and then saying, “I love and accept you exactly as you are”. And then you say, “I forgive you for”, and you say, whatever pops into your mind now, to be clear, this is a process you’re doing solo.
You are not doing this with the actual person, but what you’re going to do is just continue to do that series of statements until you have nothing else that comes to mind. So you start out for example, saying, “Dad, I love and accept you exactly as you are. And I forgive you for needing me to take care of your feelings.” “Dad, I love and accept you exactly as you are. And I forgive you for not believing in yourself.” “Dad, I love and accept you exactly as you are. And I forgive you for not believing in your own strength”, and so on and so on and so on. And it can be as simple and mundane as I forgive you for not taking out the trash when I ask you. I forgive you for being a pain in the butt. I forgive you for whatever it is. But the series is, “you say the name, I love and accept you exactly as you are. And then you name the forgiveness. I forgive you for blah blah.
So I can tell you that that is a powerful way to shift out of feeling disempowered and disconnected from your Source into a place of rootedness in deep connection. And personally, it has been the way that I have started to get a glimpse of Soul Contracts that I was not necessarily aware of previously. And that changes things tremendously, because then you can meet the person from love because here’s the thing when someone is in their illusion, when they are in their terror or their panic, or their fear about who they are, or whether they’re going to have love in their life, or whether life is safe or not safe when people are in that state of suffering, it does not bring out the best in them. And when we are engaging with each other, from that perspective, it does not bring out the best in either of us or in either party.
And it causes so much conflict and heartache and pain, and the deeper truth gets buried deeper and deeper and deeper. But if there is one member of the dynamic who can see clearly what’s going on, who can recognize what’s happening and can hold a place of loving, compassionate detachment, even while having healthy boundaries and saying, I’m not going to tolerate abusive behavior, I’m not going to tolerate acting out. It can, it can up level the whole system. It can up level things, the relationship, the family system in a profound way, and in a very quick and efficient way, because here’s the thing we can take lifetimes or more than lifetimes to work out our contracts with each other or soul contracts, or we can work through them relatively quickly. But when one of us is conscious and is holding the space for the process, it quickens it and nothing connects you with the truth and the sovereignty and the power of your true nature more than that in my experience.
And goodness knows this world could use a decrease in reactivity because what happens when we get into that fear cycle with each other and with our partners or with our children and our parents is that it creates reactivity and the reactivity causes more pain and more suffering. And those of us that are conscious women are being called to take up leadership in this regard, in our relationships, in our families, in our communities and in the world. And we do that by standing in the deepest truth of who we are and what we know, and by being a voice for that and a stand for that in our lives.
So beloved that’s all for today, sending you much love, and as always the reminder to always trust what your heart knows.