sovereignty

How Do You Know You’re Living Your Sovereign Story?

How Do You Know You’re Living Your Sovereign Story?

If someone asked you "what were you born to do?" would you have an answer?

For a long time, I thought I did. It’s all about the writing, I'd say.

But then I realized my immediate answer, my easy answer wasn’t really a complete answer. The real, enduring answer wasn’t writing, it was found through writing. Turns out, the mission is about so much more than the words on a page.

Find the Power of Sovereignty Within the Dream of Community

Find the Power of Sovereignty Within the Dream of Community

Many of us have lost track of a wider sense of belonging because of our relationship and family structures, because of our demanding jobs, because wine is easier, because there are so many things tugging at our attention that seem more important than connections with soul friends.

It’s time to look at our need for community, our need for sovereignty, and how the two blend together.

What an Irish Goddess Can Teach You About Writing & Marketing Your Practice

If I had one wish for you, it would be that you would stand sovereign in your story and in the marketplace. Sovereignty is at the heart personal fulfillment and professional success. When you are sovereign, you are the confident, compassionate ruler of your own life. You don't assume that you can control everything, but you are sure of your worth and guided by your dedication to the greater good. For the healer, therapist, or coach who wants to change lives with her vision and her work, sovereignty is a beautiful thing to aspire to.

A quick Irish history lesson (and a good story to tell over a few pints of Guinness!)

But, before it was applied to the modern individual, “sovereignty” has belonged in discussions of royalty and statecraft.

Goddess by Moira age 5
Goddess by Moira age 5

At the heart of Celtic myth - and particularly Irish myth - sits the Sovereignty Goddess. She is divinity made flesh and an embodiment of the land itself. In order for the king to take the throne and guarantee the fertility of his realm, he had to win favor with this otherworldly woman. And then she took him to bed to seal the deal.

Across mountains meant to be her breasts and across rivers meant to be her blood or tears, battles were waged in her name. The Sovereignty Goddess did not rule, you see. She was the power behind the throne. Or, perhaps, it's better to say the power before the throne.

She supported his royal cause and she crowned the king, but then, she had to stand aside and let him define his own destiny.

Centuries later, when the Irish peasantry struggled under English rule, the Sovereignty Goddess represented dreams of independence. This time a fairy woman, the goddess would appear to young men in a dream and incite them to take a stand for themselves, their people, and their country.

(Does this sound a but like what you do for clients? You help them along their journey of becoming and giving them the tools to succeed on their own, right?)

What does the Sovereignty Goddess have to offer the modern transformation professional?

History is starved of powerful women, so this influential creature is a welcome shot of the feminine. Certainly she got my attention when I was a student, just as she got the attention of the people who used these myths to understand their world.

But a couple of generations of feminist literary and cultural criticism has taught us that “and then a woman appears” is not always a sign of gender equality and empowerment.

Though seducing mortals and actually being a country is all very fabulous, it’s quite disempowering. The goddess is momentarily star of the origin story, but then she is pushed offstage until the hero decides to invade a neighboring kingdom in her honor.

With this in mind, what can a kingmaking, rabble rousing Sovereignty Goddess do for the transformation professional on their own quest to change the world?

Well, being an essential part of the prologue or “just” having a recurring role in the supporting cast is actually what being a healer is all about.

5 Lessons About Storytelling & Marketing that Only a Sovereignty Goddess Could Teach You

When you’re a therapist or healing professional writing in support of your own work, the Sovereignty Goddess can be the perfect model.

As the writer or the healer, you’re not the star. The reader is the hero. The client is the hero.

Your role is to awaken, inspire, support, facilitate. Though you hope to sustain a long term relationship with your readers and your clients, the focus is on their process and growth, not your role as guide.

Here are five ways to embody the Sovereignty Goddess and make a difference in your business and in people’s lives:

  1. Live the Legend: Like the Sovereignty Goddess, you need a powerful legend. Through your writing and branding, you can build visibility and a strong reputation that invites people to learn more about what you offer. Intrigued by your story as well as the social proof (what people are saying about you), prospective clients (or, perhaps, perspective heroes) will be excited to explore how you can help them rewrite their own stories.
  2. Embrace the Magic: The Sovereignty Goddess used magic to turn commoners into kings and warriors. In our contemporary world, we have our own kinds of magic. After all, there’s something just a little mysterious in that alchemical process that turns ideas into words that help your ideal clients understand that you're the one who can help them become healed and whole.We create and connect to magic through stories. When you sit down and write out your vision for your clients, describing what sort of transformation you know is possible, you are taking the first step in making heroes who, in turn, can be sovereign in their own lives.
  3. Exercise Choice: Just as the goddess has the power to name her consort, you have a similar power when you decide on your ideal client and reader. Choose someone who has the life experiences that your stories can speak to. Write for people who seek the outcomes that your work can promise. It’s in being choosy and specific that you’re most effective, telling stories that go deep and doing work that changes lives.
  4. Seek to Empower: When that young man laid down with the goddess, it was guaranteed that he’d arise an empowered man ready to make his own way in the world. Your hero client/reader is going to use the seeds of your story to create his or her own great narrative. Ultimately, this is what you want: your audience’s new sense of success and happiness originates with you but does not permanently depend on you.
  5. Practice Trust: The Sovereignty Goddess understood her role in the grand scheme of things: kings would pass on and young upstarts would need her to help them take their place. She trusted that in every king’s court, her story was told around the fire - the modern equivalent of being shared on the Facebook wall, the Pinterest board, and the Twitter stream.Create content that matters to you and is designed to speak to your ideal readers and you can trust that your good work will inspire your hero client to share on your story (most likely by crediting your supporting role in their own remarkable journey).

This St. Patrick’s Day, as we celebrate all things Irish (both pagan and Christian), I’d be grateful if you shared the Sovereignty story with your community - who knows what getting in touch with their inner Celtic Goddess might do for them!

Do you need help discovering and telling your own Sovereign Story? Check out my writing coaching services.

If you're longing to meet the Sovereignty Goddess within, I can help you connect to her during a Creativity Healing & Coaching Session.

The Moment a Princess Becomes a Queen, #365StrongStories 26

The Moment a Princess Becomes a Queen, #365StrongStories by Marisa GoudyThe woman drew her spine straight though no one would accuse her of slouching. She glared at the shoulder blades of the retreating clerk but soon sighed deeply and settled her face back into its usual expression of benevolent calm. It wasn’t this dreadful man’s fault that the news he carried was so bleak. She had never known an officer from the merchants’ bank to come bearing anything but vague threats and insincere apologies.

In truth, she had inherited an impoverished realm but wasn’t given a single clue about how to rescue it. For more than two generations the family had eked out an existence on the afterglow of remembered opulence alone. But even that dance with delusion had ended, finally and without ceremony. She smiled wryly to think that there wasn’t money for ceremony anyhow.

Regardless of what the bankers said, there would always be enough to keep them fed and clothed. Mostly, she didn’t care if they had to move to the castle gatehouse because the roof of the Great Hall finally caved in. Though she hadn’t realized it at the time, she had made that decision long ago.

Before she ever wore her father’s heavy crown upon her head, she married a good man who would always be able to provide the essentials of life. But, of course, she had always been raised to expect more.

Nothing but the finest dreams and most gossamer promises were good enough for the young princess. She had been permitted to marry a man for love and was still allowed to keep the expectations of a bride who had made a strategic match based on riches and position.

Only now that the princess’s fantasy had dissolved into a sovereign’s reality did she see the weakness in the story of happily ever after. Now, she had her own daughters’ legacy to consider. And what about the ancestral ghosts that would lose their home if this palace was allowed to slide into the sea?

She took off her crown and looked at her reflection in the rosy gold. Her mind made up, for the first time in her life she looked into the eyes of a queen.

What Your Creative Entrepreneur's Autobiography Reveals

The Prologue to Your Creative Entrepreneur's Story

What your creative entrepreneur's autobiography revealsIt’s not enough to dedicate your working hours to support someone else’s commercial dream.

Following the rules as they’ve been set out, and even doing the work you’ve been trained to do won't always sustain you. Not if it’s not yours. Not if it doesn’t have meaning.

You need to make things - a sculpture that will endure; a dinner that will linger, even if only in memory; a poem that describes a perfect moment in time. This creative process is usually more fulfilling than thankless, so you keep on reaching to find the true expression of your vision.

Soon, your private creative process resists being confined to the edges of your day.  You feel restless, empty of purpose even as you're full of inspiration, and you're unable to conform to that workaday reality you tried to accept as "normal."

Like the creative imperative, once “I am an entrepreneur” lodges in your heart, you never quite escape it.

And so, you leap. Or you tiptoe. Or you stretch until you realize you’re prepared to open a business based on your passions, your art, and your calling to make something that matters.

Become Sovereign In Your Own Reality

Long before I had the courage to say “I quit!” and declare I had to design and control my own work life, I had my brushes with sovereignty.

I’d found myself in a rather un-magical world - newly married, working, spinning my wheels on a spiritual quest when I really wanted to fly to some other dimension. As I tried sort out how I was going to lead a meaningful life, I made my way to a place where I could dance with the unknown.

When my teacher and mentor declared the point of everything was to “become sovereign in your own reality,” I knew I’d found it.

The seed was planted, but then I kind of forgot about the epiphany. Since it didn't offer an immediate escape from the day job, I kept searching.

Though starved for attention, that seed survived. It nourished me through the start of motherhood, the death of my own mother, and the sudden freefall into entrepreneurship. It rooted me through the subsequent years of self-discovery as I dealt with all three of those events occurring in the span of a few months.

Your Creative Entrepreneur's Autobiography is Your Sovereignty Story

BIt just may reveal the heart of your work - your sovereign story - in a way you've never understood it before.

It's going to be a story of hopeful meandering and dead ends, of running full speed in the wrong direction. You'll likely describe collecting blossoms of inspiration and losing sight of your creative dreams when immersed in busywork. There will be breathless successes, long pauses, and soul shaking defeats. You'll talk a lot about seeking, finding, and planting the seeds that you pray will deliver a good harvest.

Wandering is actually the most direct route to Sovereignty.

Whatever truths are illuminated in your creative entrepreneur's autobiography, recognize that there is a story to be explored and told, an historical map that needs to be drawn. This indispensable map will guide your next steps.

In looking to your own past, collecting the experiences and lessons and "ah ha!" moments, you gain perspective on where you truly stand today. With such an understanding you'll be ready to articulate the vision and craft the message that will take your work into a future that glows brighter thanks to your contributions.

It's possible to build a nice business without diving this deep into your history, your vision, and your reason for braving entrepreneurship. But didn't you leave that secure, "normal" world because you hated the way personal, creative expression and earning a livelihood were always held at arm's length?

Isn't it worth going deeper and going further?

Beyond Unique, Beyond Engaging, Be Sovereignbeyond unique. beyond engaging.

Be Sovereign.

As a creative entrepreneur, you do more than just run a business…

You dare to make a livelihood in service to your passions.

You speak your truth to a select tribe that yearns for a life more beautiful or bearable or bold.

You’re confident that your work has both value and magic... both describing it and getting it out there is a sacred mission.

So, how do you move from being a business owner who makes a nice living to standing sovereign -  in your life and in the marketplace of ideas and products?

You find your stories. You write your stories.

You share the stories that generate a special, signature energy that sustains both you and the community that invests in your work.

Is there a specific formula for sovereignty?

The fullness of what it means for a creative entrepreneur to "be sovereign" is still revealing itself.

I discover something new every time I write into “what is sovereignty and what does it mean to me and the people I am meant to serve?” (I'm taking option #1 when it comes to deciding what to publish when I'm writing the bigger story and sharing what I can as the bigger ideas coalesce.)

If you have any stories about how sovereignty shows up in your life, please share in the comments. sovereignty is about consciously standing in your own story, but that's only possible when you're connected to other trees in your shared forest.

Meanwhile, follow along with my #365StrongStories project. Get the weekly digest full of inspiration for storytellers, entrepreneurs, and seekers of sovereignty.

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