My authentic offering is valuable.
I have recently been hit on the head with the term – Reciprocity
In one week, I have had 4 different conversations or interactions that have referred to this term. A term that initially, I had no idea what it meant.
For anyone who is like me, and was not actually sure what reciprocity referred to, it is defined by Cambridge online dictionary as – ‘behaviour in which two people or groups of people give each other help and advantages”
So on reading this definition, the penny dropped. Of course, I knew what it meant! It was obviously a derivative of the term “to reciprocate,” which I guess is a more commonly used reference.
However the reason the term had been bought to my attention was not because of the meaning as per the definition, but rather it came up as a result of being introduced to the term of “Sacred Reciprocity”. A term that I have discovered stems from an Andean shamanic concept called Anyi.
The term Anyi, speaks to the notion that everything we have is provided to us from Mother Nature/Gaia/Earth. Everything. Just think about that for just one second. Everything. Absolutely everything you have, comes from the Earth. And therefore, if we are receiving so much from Her, then what is it we are giving back? How are we reciprocating for the gifts She offers us?
In the Shamanic practises, they incorporate many rituals and ceremonies in order to give thanks to Her. They consciously remember. They consciously engage. They are consciously grateful for that which they are receiving.
For me, I personally feel that our culture and our way of being have truly lost sight of the fact that we are only here because of Her, and we are more concerned with, what more we can take, than what we can actually give back.
We have lost the links, connections and ideals of the sacredness of life, earth and all its cycles. Cycles that we are all a part of whether we want to be conscious to them or not. And as a result, we have little or no idea of what we are offering because we have forgotten that we are even receiving!
Apart from the obvious environmental impacts, our way of life is having on the earth, I think this lack of consciousness around reciprocity also bleeds into our careers and ways of interacting with others.
I had never thought about my career, as an act of an offering until I attended my first Qoya retreat, which was themed Doing Your Sacred Work.
I had never consciously thought that what I was doing every day was and is going to be my offering to the world. And when I began to think about my career in this way, it really started to make me think a lot more about what it was I was doing, why I was doing it and how I was offering it each day.
It made me ask myself: what are my real gifts? Did I truly have unique gifts? What was I actually offering? How did I offer it? Was I hiding my gifts in order to fit in? Was I conditioning to just offer certain parts of me? Or did I just follow the path that was in front of my nose?
I had no real answers to any of them. But when I started to think of each day as an offering, I started to question that I was truly offering the best version of me.
I then stumbled on the idea of: “Did my current offering come from a place of love, or a place of fear?”
And in the vast majority of things, the answer was Fear.
I did what I did because I was scared I couldn’t make money in other ways.
I did what I did because I didn’t want to stand out too much.
I did what I did because it was ok and I didn’t really want to make a fuss
I did what I did because it is just so damn scary to do anything else
I did what I did because it felt safer to be small
I did what I did because what if I failed?
I did what I did because I didn’t really know what else I would do
Fear. I did what I did because of Fear. So, now I was at least conscious of this, and it meant that I could at least begin to ask myself what would I offer if I was offering from a place of love instead?
Sounds easy enough. But it is not and in fact, it manufactured a whole lot of smoke screens!
So I have danced with the question throughout the last 3 years. Then one day, whilst in a Communication workshop with the fabulous Joe Weston (check him out), he introduced me to the idea that you are in your true power – when you are in your Joy.
This one little statement hit me so hard. My authentic Power, COMES from my Joy, my offering then should COME from my place of authentic Power!
I felt like I had won the jackpot. It felt like the little puzzle piece that would put me together. At least one layer of the fog was lifted. I need to find my joy, and offer that.
I started this year sharing in my Infinity Therapies newsletter, that I was committing this year to Being. That my offerings to the world would come from my deepest desire to just Be.
And why just Be? Because when are you just being, you can find a place of true joy. Not the hyper jump around every day joy, but the deep seated peaceful underlying current type joy.
To some, the idea of just Being, may seem a little confronting, as the idea of just “Being” sounds like it is not offering anything – but what do you DOOOOO, if you are just BEING? This is often the question asked!
Being does not mean that you don’t act. Rather it is it is just a way of reframing, and guiding the way I choose to spend my time. By checking and aligning my actions to a sense of Being, I am able to create stronger, healthier boundaries, and to create more joyfully and holistic goals. I enjoy the journey every day, as opposed to just the outcomes.
This in turn, means I manage my energy better, I eat better, I exercise more and when I feel anxiety or stress about anything, I can focus on returning to my original goal as to why I chose this path, and as a result, my mind takes rest quicker.
Each day, I am working on Being a Well-Being!
Here are some examples of how I have used my sense of Being to help to define my actions and offering:
- I want to live more consciously and mindfully – so I practise meditation
- I want to expand my capacity to create and express myself- so I practise writing
- I want to feel embodied, I want to feel in touch with my knowing – so I engage in conscious movement, rest and sensual practices
- I want to be and feel connected – so I create invitations for others to join me!
If we start from who we want to Be and then offer into the world, the actions that support that, how would that change the culture in which we live? How would it impact the choices we make, the interactions that we have? And what if our real gifts are aligned directly with our sense of well being – then why would we not want to offer them?
We are birthed into this world by a Mother that nurtures us until we are self-sufficient enough for Mother Earth to take the reins, She then showers us with an abundance of resources, She does not “do nature”, She “is nature” and with that she offers us her best – should we not reciprocate?