In my recent discussion with Jessica Zweig on the SimplyBe podcast, we talked about the connection between Yin energy and abundance. To be abundant, to receive abundance, to become successful, we must receive. And to receive, we cannot always be in the arduous doing of things. So how does that jive with our idea of how to attain success in our culture?
Short answer: it doesn’t.
The abundance paradox
At first glance, this appears to be an impossible paradox. To be successful I have to stop doing things? To accumulate wealth I need to release wealth? To be in flow and take advantage of synchronicities I need to play and cultivate joy? Ugh. What a brain bender.
In our culture, success is synonymous with hard work. With grit. With pushing through. With accumulation and dominance and aggression. The inference is that if you go to bed feeling rested and happy, you didn’t leave it all on the field during your workday. Achievement and suffering go hand in hand, or at least that’s what “they” (whoever "they" are) have wanted you to believe.
Innovation is yin
And while hard work is important, it’s equally important to recognize moments to ease our foot off of the gas pedal and get into “glide” mode. When I was a Director of Innovation for a multinational corporation, I did a lot of research and reading around how to generate and maximize innovation across the business. The consistent theme throughout all of this material? Literally all of the great, game-changing and needle-moving ideas that come to innovators come to them during DOWN TIME. When they walk away. When they take a break. When they disrupt their daily routine.
Letting our brain wander in the shower. Random thoughts that come to us in savasana in yoga class, or while pulling weeds in the garden. The bottom line is that the key to generating brilliant, money-generating ideas is to slow down, do something else, and allow it to come into being.
Ideas are always gestating within us. Life itself holds within it endless opportunities for serendipity, connection, and confluence. This is the energy of the Goddess. And one Goddess in particular has been popping up a lot for my clients as they consider a major shift. Her name is Inari Okami.
Inari Okami is a Japanese Shinto Goddess, and she is associated with the moon, with foxes, shapeshifting, sake, rice, commerce and crime. In other words, she’s an abundance Goddess, and we endeavored to harness her incredible energy in our TOTEM Tarot Deck Moon Card.
Like the Moon, Inari Okami embodies the abundance inherent in our existence. We are all connected to it. We change with it, ebbing and flowing like waning and waxing moons. To be abundant, we must recognize cycles. We must tap into the flow of the day- or of the moment- instead of exhausting ourselves by trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.
Inari has been showing up in a lot of client readings for individuals considering a major evolution in their life: one that serves them, gives them more time, supports their health, and isn't as punishing as their current paradigm. Like the moon, we are never the same person twice, and creating a life in which that is accepted and celebrated just might be the key to success.
The "secret" to success
And I’m not suggesting we throw out hard work altogether. Hard work is crucial to succeeding as a small business owner, and there is no replacement for sweat equity. Someone this past week asked me what my “secret” is to getting the word out about TOTEM, and I had a series of immediate reactions to this question:
What does success even mean? I’m not even close to what I consider to be success with TOTEM. I don’t consider it “successful” yet, and I’m not sure I ever will- regardless of what landmarks I hit along the way. Just because you do a great interview with an awesome person on a great platform doesn’t actually mean anything about your bottom line. Social media can be a trickster, and it can give the impression of incredible success when, in reality, you’re just talking to someone on the internet. And then posting about it. The trick is to have fun and do interviews and campaigns that you’re genuinely excited about, because at the end of the day you have no control over how it’s received or what it means for your business in practical terms. To attempt to control it is the urge to “yang it”, instead of allowing the flow of yin to carry it away while you watch, with curiosity, where it goes.
I get lucky all the time. I don’t generate this luck through any formal program or set of ritual activities. I don’t try to control material reality. Instead, I try to pay attention to synchronicities and pursue “random” opportunities for no other reason that I want to do it. It seems fun. It’s playful. If Goddess energy was any formal activity, it’s more like truffle hunting than anything. No one knows why truffles grow where and when they do, and they have never managed to “grow” them in any attempt at formal farming. It’s an adventure. Some days suck- you come up goose eggs after a long day of trudging through the forest. But the days that don’t suck- and produce some of the most delicious, nutritious, magical and coveted fungi on planet earth- well, those are the days that make it all worth it. So, think of an opportunity as an invitation to a truffle hunt, and try to come from a place of “yes”- i.e. receiving energy- to see what treasures you might just trip over.
Don't give up. If there is a “secret” to the relative success of TOTEM, it is ten years of actual hard work. The work that isn’t sexy and isn’t featured on social media or podcasts or anything else. The quiet, daily commitment to client experience and quality of readings and sessions. Spending any money made on continued education, on printing or publishing, on infrastructure and on strategic development instead of buying a new pair of shoes. The real “secret” to business is that it’s mostly about not giving up when it sucks or feels like you’re losing everything or that you constantly ask yourself why you thought this was going to be a good idea. One of my daily mantras is “don’t make permanent decisions because of temporary circumstances.” In other words: the moon might be waning now, but she will wax and become full soon. So, when the moon is full, why not enjoy it for a minute? Yin isn't always available to us- there are times when we must yang- so it's imperative to learn to identify the difference and pivot accordingly.
The addiction to doing
This is the wisdom of the Goddess. It’s not just social media platitudes roughly communicating something to the effect of “Yaaaassss Queen!!!!”. There are real, tangible aspects of Goddess energy that you can incorporate into your daily life and your overall approach to work and money. It’s scary stuff. Trust me- I have a constant inclination to be DOING something to abate my anxiety of being all vulnerable and stuff, out on a limb, running a business. But you can constantly do something every minute of every day and not necessarily see a return on this investment. You can still lose everything. And what if, in your incessant work, you missed the idea/ person/ thing that could have completely transformed your business?
Full Moon Chat with Jenn Dieas
We’re going to dig into this conversation a bit further on Instagram Live this week on Wednesday, October 20th- during the Full Moon in Aries! Jenn Dieasof GlowOut Salons and Babes Behind Brands is going to host us having a full moon chat around all things abundance, flow, and synchronicity in business. I’m also going to be posting a series around the concept of re-crowning the Goddess and maintaining this connection to abundance on Substack herestarting this week. Make sure you’re subscribed over there to ensure you get the more spiritually-oriented, technical content in addition to our fluffy email newsletters- the tangible, nitty gritty exercises, meditations, deep dives and more that will support your individual, spiritual journey.
And this week's Full Moon in Aries is a perfect time to kick off a new practice harnessing yin energy. Aries is all about goals, business, achievements and action, so consider finding a way to access these things...but with a yin approach. Talking to Jenn and allowing our conversation to go wherever it wants is yin- a casual, spontaneous discussion with a badass female business owner under the silvering light of the Full Moon. Perhaps instead of writing down the specific things you want to manifest, you actually live one of them for the night. Take yourself out to dinner. Light candles for your bubble bath instead of just hopping in the shower. Go for a walk and pop into a place that peeks your curiosity. And, if nothing else, just read more about this big October Full Moon HERE.
In short: see what the Goddess is willing to offer you. Get in a receiving state. And, most importantly, when the offer comes in, remember to say "yes"!
This is what I now think of as giving the Goddess her crown back. Putting her energy in charge. Where attention goes, energy flows.
And, incase you haven't seen previous notes or posts on social, please check out our TOTEM Tarot Deck on Amazon HERE. Anyone who purchases a deck before Halloween and emails me a receipt or screenshot will be invited to an online Tarot Card Workshop on Halloween!