Category: Coaching

10 Powerful Mantras for Beating Burnout

By Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly

How has your Summer been this year? I hope it has been full of Joy, Peace, and so many happy new memories. I also hope you are finding ways to recharge your energy. Keep reading for my top 10 mantras for beating burnout!

For me, this summer has been full of fun activities and connecting with friends every week. I’ve also been vending at local Psychic Fairs, doing in-person oracle and tarot readings in addition to working with my online clients, enjoying lunch dates with old friends, beach days, county fair, and hosting house guests. I love it!

summer letter cube on soil
Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

Listen, I love this Southern California sunshine and long days to hang out on my back patio, take a nature stroll, or work in my garden. Those are some of my key practices for grounding, centering, and clearing my energy. These are non-negotiable for me in order to not veer off into over-commitment and burnout.

Still, even with my non-negotiable self care practices fully in place… I’m tired, y’all.

Like DAMN, let me just take a nap already. Anyone else?

If you can use some leisure time to just BE and not constantly DO, then these next few mantras are perfect. These are the ones I use whenever I’m physically, mentally, or emotionally wiped out. Start with these mantras to get your mindset ready to come back from burnout. Which ones are your favorites? (Mine is the last one, lol)

10 Powerful Mantras for Beating Burnout:

  • I am allowed to rest for as long as I want and need to
  • It’s okay for me to pause
  • It’s okay for me to let someone else handle it today
  • My body wants to rest, and I am happy to give it rest
  • I am taking some time just for myself
  • I will be okay even if I miss out on this experience
  • There is still plenty for me to enjoy when I am ready
  • I am happier and feel better when I get enough rest
  • My friends/family/loved ones understand and support my healing
  • Shhhhhhhhhh
blanket with fruits on grass in mountains
Photo by Sunsetoned on Pexels.com

Whether you can get away for a dreamy 3-week vacation, or if you are able to enjoy a few days (or hours?!) here and there… you deserve a moment to yourself to rest & recharge.

Michelle Lewis (she/her/they) is the creator & founder of The Blessings Butterfly, a holistic coaching & energy healing practice that is teaching people to live a life that they love. She is a writer, speaker, energy witch/healer, and author of the Amazon bestselling positive affirmation books, The Blessings Butterfly and The Blessings Butterfly

The Message of Summer & Fire

Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly

Have you ever wondered why you feel a deeper connection to some seasons, but not others? It may be that the master element for your favorite season is also a master element in your astrological birth chart. To find out what your birth chart contains, get a free report here: Free Astrology Birth Chart Report

Today I want to share the message of Summer & Fire.

macro photography of black sunglasses on sand
Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

The season of Summer & the element of Fire are closely intertwined, energetically balanced and full of activity. This is well-known among Energy Work Practitioners, especially those with training in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Eastern Yoga, and of course witches, shamans, & pagans.

So… how can understanding and embracing Summer and Fire benefit you? Simply put, it can help you improve your health and access your Joy. Yes, even if the master element of Fire doesn’t rule your Sun sign.

Here are the key characteristics associated with the Fire Element:

  • Passion
  • Connection
  • Destruction & Transformation
  • Light & Warmth
  • Movement & Growth
  • Knowledge & Wisdom

The season of Summer belongs to and is ruled by the element of Fire. Taking this a step further, it is said that the element of Fire is ruled by the heart! So… what fires you up? What makes you want to get out of the darkness of isolation, and connect with other like-minded souls? Right now, this Summer- this is the time for you to come out and Shine.

silhouette of person holding sparkler digital wallpaepr
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Whenever you follow those little lights of Passion, they will inevitably lead you to your Joy. If you’ve been waiting for a sign, Honey this is it. It’s time for you to LIVE!

Michelle Lewis (she/her/they) is the creator & founder of The Blessings Butterfly, a holistic coaching & energy healing practice that is teaching people to live a life that they love. She is a writer, speaker, energy witch/healer, and author of the Amazon bestselling positive affirmation books, The Blessings Butterfly and The Blessings Butterfly

2022 Year of the Deep Water Tiger

Guest Post by Tina Falk, CFSP, Founder of VIA School of Feng Shui

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

Are you feeling a shift in this new year? Some transitions are subtle while others are a surge of energy. To me, I already feel a powerful surge. My favorite method to interpret energy is through a 4,000-year-old astrology system; the Chinese five elements and zodiac signs. I am a Chinese Astrologer and Metaphysician. I use these insights and intuitive nudges to assist my clients and students from all around the world.

Aside from exploring their own 4 Pillar Chinese astrology chart; most of my clients are eager to know about the energy of the new year and how it may influence their lives based on their particular chart. Even if you’ve not yet had a 4 Pillar chart reading, there is still a lot to gain by understanding the incoming energy of this year.

So let’s dive in and see what 2022, the year of the Deep Water Tiger might present.

The world we are creating…our lives, our homes, our communities, and planet, is a reflection of the health or dis-ease we are owning. Are you on default mode or creation mode?

This year will be about choice. Stepping into, and understanding the power of, your will to choose. What you decide is your choice. The choices we’re being faced with, at this critical time in our human evolution, are between the old and the new.

If you choose, in any given moment, to fall back into habit, or what someone else wants, out of fear or out of stubbornness, then that is a counter clockwise turn directing you back into old ways.

However if you choose potential, creation, uncertainty, and future, then you are spinning the dial forward into a new world. Yep, that new world many of us came here to be a part of.

The main traits of the Deep Water Tiger energy are intense, extreme, and powerful. Below is my interpretation of these energies to assist you in the navigation of your Dark Water Tiger journey:

FEAR vs OPTIMISM

The response of fear or optimism relates to Deep Water energy. Think of being at sea during a storm without any means to anchor or get your feet on the ground. We don’t do well making decisions that will serve us long term when we come from a place of fear. Fear is valuable and can bring about quick reactions to get us out of harm’s way, but we don’t thrive living in that reactive state for long. For long-term survival, we need to turn our attention towards the next forward step.

When we have something to look forward to, or take time to see challenging moments or relationships as a valuable lesson or opportunity for growth, we begin to feel encouraged, hopeful, and stronger. Optimism is an innate drive in humans. Having a desire for better or more is what keeps us alive. Assess your connection with the external world and be sure you are allowing space for other optimistic influences and people to be a part of your everyday life.

ANGER vs SERENITY

The emotions of anger and serenity are indicative of the Tiger. Tiger, the beginning of Spring, is a Wood Chinese element. Wood is associated with the liver and limbs, birth families, unexpected change, strength, growth, maturity, new beginnings, and anger. What emotions are you choosing to express, sit in, live in, and project onto others?

Anger can be the impetus for change. That’s a good thing. But we can’t live in anger—instead we use that energy to make things different. Keep in mind, and heart, that the world around you, is also being influenced by these energies. You may choose to remain angry, but are you able to stand in the center of the storm without snapping or being swayed by the noise? Can you create serenity within?

An inner place I often tap into for serenity, is a trusting that there is a greater purpose to this thing called life. That even though right now—I may not like what I’m experiencing or foresee the outcome—I trust there is a reason for it to be happening. My husband and I have always had a saying through uncertain times (we’ll be celebrating our 34th Anniversary this year, so many opportunities to use it), “Things always work out.” This comforts our souls and allows us to move forward.

DIVISIVE vs DECISIVE

If you know someone with a Tiger in their Chinese astrology chart, you know there is no sitting on the fence for them. They are either all in or all out. This year, the Tiger is teaching us the importance of our choices.

Whatever you decide—you can’t get it wrong. You can pick an old way, and continue down that path for the rest of your life or choose the new. There’s no right or wrong. We are each here for various reasons and there is no one “true” path for everyone. But there is a “true” path for YOU.

The state of humanity is deeply divided, and the energy of 2022 indicates that this division will become deeper and more expansive. So what does this mean? Are we supposed to pick sides? Fight against those who disagree with us? Or appreciate the contrast? Abraham-Hicks speaks frequently of the value of contrast.

We need to see and experience things we don’t want, so we can get clear on what it is we do want in our lives. That’s all. There is no right or wrong, good or bad. It’s just an energy presenting itself that you get to make a decision about. And those decisions realign us on our purposeful and meaningful path.

WAR vs PEACE

Tiger is often seen as the symbol of power, authority, prestige, royalty, and war. The Tiger knows exactly what side of the fence it is standing on. And will then put every part of its fierce attention, and being, towards that intention. He has his eye on the prize and will stay laser focused to see it through.

The war has already begun. It is in each of us. Our greatest battles are fought within, but we often turn our anger towards others thus becoming at war with the world.

One of the simplest, yet most profound, quotes of this new-age era came from Gandhi, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Gandhi embodied internal peace. No matter the chaos, disagreements, fear, or destruction happening around him, he stood strong without being swayed from his convictions. What steps can we take to create stillness, rest, a pause, a breath, gratitude, and peace in our own lives to bring more peace to our world?

This is the year to turn inward. To tune out the noise and the blame, and work on our own inner peace. Tuning into, and tending to, our Selves is a profound choice that will anchor and support other decisions we’ll make this year.

The Tiger is fierce. He is focused. And hungry. What are you hungry for?

The decisions you make this year will set the trajectory of your future self. Just get off the fence and keep moving. And remember that everyone around you, those next door, on the news and the other side of the planet, are all being influenced by these energies, too. There’s no time for judgment. Be patient and empathetic.

The Tiger is a keen observer. It’s our duty to witness the events that unfold before us, then turn inward—to our innate intuitive compass—to guide us along our path.

Are you curious how the 4 Chinese zodiac animals in your chart get along with the Tiger? Reach out to schedule your personal 4 Pillar Chinese Astrology Reading.

I am Tina Falk, a Chinese Metaphysician and Astrologer. I’ve been practicing this way of life since 2005. My goal is to provide a professional and intuitive perspective to enhance your awareness and appreciation of Self and Space. My role is to bring you into a place of being in gratitude, creating conscious intentions, taking action and believing in your own power. This will propel you into a more meaningful and purposeful life. I am a classically trained feng shui practitioner who also incorporates Landform and BTB principles. And to me, the most exciting aspect is integration of your 4 Pillar Chinese astrology charts. My approach allows me to personalize your whole feng shui experience! I can make recommendations that are specific to you, and each member of your family or business team. Everyone deserves that personal attention. Overall, I am here to support — sometimes with a firm stance, but always with love and empathy — and to inspire a new way in which you see the world and your place in it. Feng shui has enriched my life by revealing everything from the insanely obvious to the subtlest of energy in our surroundings. We are sensitive beings and when we can connect and create a sacred relationship with ourselves, our space and others…damn, life gets exciting and motivating! Feng Shui has been a true gift to me . . . and my family. I intend for it to be the same for you.

Connect with Tina: VIA Feng Shui Instagram

Lessons from The Lovers: Tarot’s Theme for 2022

a tarot card om blue and pink surface

Written by Kate Sheridan, Guest Contributor

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

If you’re interested in numerology or the tarot, you may have heard that this year is a Lovers year. The logic is simple: when we add up the digits in 2022, we get 6, which leads us to card #6 in the Major Arcana — The Lovers.

But what does this mean?

Lovers Stereotypes

With Valentine’s Day come and gone, I find myself exploring all of the stereotypical themes we might associate with this card, the kind of surface-level interpretations that come to mind when we hear the word ‘lover.’ Surely this card signifies romantic love, a twin flame connection, finally meeting that tall, dark, and handsome stranger…

Right?

silhouette photo of couple during golden hour
Photo by Rodrigo Souza on Pexels.com

We all know the feeling. Let’s say you’re doing a tarot reading for yourself and you pull The Lovers, and your heart leaps up at the thought of meeting your Soulmate with a capital S. Oh my goddess! you think, It’s finally going to happen! Or maybe it’s not a Soulmate, but a new job, or your family’s approval, or any other kind of external validation of your worth. Your heart leaps up toward this someone or something, leaps or even grasps at it, and you’re left hoping that this desire is a foretelling of its consummation. Will The Lovers bring you a lover, bring you your heart’s desire?

Maybe it will. Indeed, true love is real. It happens every day.

Still, I can’t help but feel like The Lovers card needs a PR update, one that expands our understanding to encompass the full range of this archetype.

And I should know, having read tarot for myself all throughout my tender twenties, those years of relationships beginning and ending, of looking desperately for love, of enacting codependent dynamics over and over until finally my eyes were opened to the pattern of my life — and to the possibility of choosing another way.

As with all the cards, we’ve got to go beyond the “Little White Book” style of reading, that is, relying on the guidebook that came with your deck rather than tapping into your own intuition. If The Lovers card is only what the LWB says it is, then all we have to go on is “Attraction, love, beauty, trials overcome.” Or reversed — “Failure, foolish designs.”

Attraction or failure. Love or foolish designs on love.

Duality Traps

So often, our minds fall into these dualistic traps, especially when reading tarot: Will my future be good or bad? Will I succeed or fail? Should I stay or should I go? Is this decision right or wrong?

Will I meet my Soulmate, or will I be alone forever?

yin yang symbol on brown beach sand
Photo by Jben Beach Art on Pexels.com

Upon closer inspection, it is precisely this kind of dualistic thinking that The Lovers card urges us to alchemize and expand. The classic image by Pamela Colman Smith depicts this process perfectly. First, the binary: man and woman, Adam and Eve naked in the Garden of Eden. Then, the expansion: the archangel Raphael, patron of matchmakers but also of medical professionals, Raphael whose name means “God heals.”

The word heal has the same etymological roots as the word whole, and this is the key to The Lovers. When we pull this card in a reading, often we are being asked to interrogate all the ways that we are making our wholeness contingent upon something or someone outside of us: If only I could be loved by this person, if only I could be as beautiful or talented as that person, if only I could be validated and recognized in this way… then I will be happy, then I will be whole. Then I will be healed.

Deeper Inquiry Leads to a Shift

Here’s the truth. When your heart leaps up toward that which you desire, it is the leaping itself that is asking to be acknowledged. The desire itself. The longing. In this tender feeling is the gesture toward Wholeness. Belonging. Union. The Lovers archetype points us not toward the Other (the person or thing we desire so much) — or even toward the Self (the remaining half of a binary equation) — but rather directly into the interstitial space between Self and Other, the ineffable yet palpable place where Self and Other become One.

“There is only One Light, and ‘you’ and ‘me’ are holes in the lamp shade.”

– Sufi poet Mahmoud Shabestari, by way of Paul Quinn, author of Tarot for Life

The question then becomes: how and why are you denying yourself access to this mysterious place of Union, of Oneness? How and why are you banishing yourself from the Garden, convincing yourself that someone or something outside of you is standing between you and your worthiness?

As we sit with these inquiries, we come to realize that our ability to experience Union with another will always be constrained by our ability to touch this place of Union within our own hearts. The extent to which we can receive love is directly proportional to the extent to which we can love ourselves, or better yet, the extent to which we can access Universal Love in our own heart chakras, harmonizing higher and lower frequencies — alchemizing duality — and attuning ourselves to Love as an orientation toward life, not a foolish design in which we either succeed or fail.

everything is connected neon light signage
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Remember that this alchemy is happening on a collective level, for one and for all, throughout 2022. Though you can and will learn Lovers lessons in deeply personal ways, this isn’t just a warm and fuzzy encouragement toward self-love. It’s no walk in the park, to enter a Lovers year now, in this era of great awakening but also of great existential threat. I believe that our collective survival depends upon the collective consciousness that is the fruit of Lovers labor. It feels like an urgent imperative, to bring this healing technology of the Heart back online, to re-member our interconnectedness to all beings and to all things, to reclaim the Earth as an Eden where each one of us is already worthy, already whole.

But we can’t achieve this Union by bypassing dualities, leaping over them and into Oneness. No, we must enter directly into duality, the feelings of separation, of unworthiness, the heartbreak and the longing, in order to see through the illusion of separation — and into the One Light.

The Lovers tarot card as depicted by artist Pamela Coleman Smith

To dig deeper into The Lovers card, you can check out Kate’s Year of the Lovers offering. She also recommends two podcasts, Tarot for the Wild Soul by Lindsay Mack and Between the Worlds by Amanda Yates Garcia. Here are some episodes from each that focus on The Lovers card:

Kate Sheridan is a tarot reader and astrologer who calls herself The Laundress. Through her project The Spiral Temple, Kate holds sacred space to re-member the Goddess, reawaken the Divine Feminine, and reconnect with the cycles of the Moon and the Wheel of the Year. You can find her online at www.thelaundresstarot.com and on Instagram @themodernlaundress.

Why Are These Crystals So Magickal?

Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly

Think that crystals are *just* pretty rocks? Think again!

The love of crystals is not just for witches, yogis, geologists and spiritual gurus. Since the beginning of Time, humans have had an ongoing fascination with shiny & colorful rocks. Yes, they are pretty- but they are so much more than that. Today, I want to share a few of the many wonderful, dare I say magickal, properties associated with 3 of the most popular gemstones: Amethyst, Clear Quartz, and Rose Quartz.

If you’re just starting out in your energy practice, these 3 crystals make excellent tools that you can begin working with right away.

For a solid metaphysical reference, I like “The Book of Stones: Who They Are and What They Teach” by Robert Simmons, Naisha Ahsian, and Hazel Raven.

Ready to dive in to some of Earth’s magickal treasures? Let’s Go!

Amethyst

a close up photo of amethyst crystal
Photo by Jason Deines on Pexels.com

Amethyst is simply beautiful and develops various shades of purple as it grows. Ranging from delicate lavender to deep violet, this variety of quartz gets its gorgeous color from small amounts of irradiated iron, or other impurities that change the color of this otherwise clear mineral. For me, I meditate with amethyst whenever I am preparing to work with a client for an energy reading. I find it helps me to connect spiritually with the client and their guides while still maintaining an energetic barrier of protection for myself as the channel.

  • Magickal Correspondences: Divine connection, spiritual protection, purification, releasing addictions.

Shop Amethyst items at The Blessings Butterfly Gift Shop! 108 Bead Amethyst Prayer Mala Peace Candle w/Amethyst

Clear Quartz

close up photo of clear crystals
Photo by Castorly Stock on Pexels.com

Clear Quartz is a favorite of mine because it serves so many purposes in my magick practice. Whether I’m using a long point to focus energy on something specific, or pairing it with another stone to amplify that crystal’s properties, I don’t think you can ever go wrong with clear quartz as an all-purpose energy tool. And, if you’re not into the witchy stuff, it’s still just a really pretty rock to decorate your bookshelf or desk.

  • Magickal Correspondences: Programmable, amplifies intention, magnifies ambient energies, clearing, cleansing, memory enhancement, awareness, focus & clarity.

Shop Clear Quartz items at The Blessings Butterfly Gift Shop! Positivity Crystal Candle

Rose Quartz

photo of rose quartz
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Ah, Rose Quartz, the stone of Ultimate Love! This is in my opinion a perfect stone for anyone who is ready to welcome more Love into their life: Love for the Self, Love for one another, Love for all beings that make up our magnificent universe. It is simply not possible to have too much Love, but it’s evident that a lack of Love causes tremendous suffering. For me, Rose Quartz has been a pivotal crystal in my own healing journey to Whole-Self Love.

  • Magickal Correspondences: Love, gentleness, emotional healing, release of stress, Divine Unity.

Shop Rose Quartz items at The Blessings Butterfly Gift Shop! Rose Quartz Rough Stone (pocket sized) Sage Bundle for Love + Friendship

Now, you tell me: Which crystals are your favorites? Are you interested in learning about the magickal qualities of any other stones?

food wood dawn nature
Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com
Michelle Lewis (she/her/they) is the creator & founder of The Blessings Butterfly, a holistic coaching & energy healing practice that is teaching people to live a life that they love. She is a writer, speaker, energy witch/healer, and author of the Amazon bestselling positive affirmation books, The Blessings Butterfly and The Blessings Butterfly

The REAL Formula for Success

Written by Guest Contributor, Helen Tremethick

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

Many years ago, I wrote a blog post called, “SUCCESS begins with SELF-CARE”. I was crafty enough to turn the word SUCCESS into an anagram that included: Self-care, Understanding, Community, Creativity, Excellence, Service, and Savasana. What’s most interesting to me about this post is not how nerdy I am when it comes to wordplay but how relevant it is even now. 

As entrepreneurs and values-minded people, we love to talk about The Hustle as an Evil Other. We share stories of how we’ve successfully overcome the external pressure to perform. But the truth is, when it comes to our daily routines, we’re often guilty of pushing ourselves too hard, creating unrealistic expectations for ourselves, and then diminishing or worse, ignoring our successes. 

The Hustle is pervasive AF. Its insipid claws sneak into our planners, our To Do Lists, our social media feed, and our perfectionist standards. Its voice whispers “not enough” despite your life filled with big responsibilities and unexpected challenges. 

In my last decade as a Business Co-Conspirator, I’ve seen this time and time again. The Hustle can be glorified as a “5-Step Marketing Plan to 7-Figures” but it’s still lipstick on a pig. 

Anything that makes you feel as if your best is not enough is The Hustle in disguise…no matter how many glitter rainbows and fluffy pillows you find on the website. 

woman reading book
Photo by The Lazy Artist Gallery on Pexels.com

Humans like things to make sense. We like to know that if we “do this plus this then we get these results”. That’s the reason why these templates and gurus do so well. They’re catering to our innate need for clarity, quick wins, and easy confidence. 

I’d like to offer an alternative. This is what the real success formula looks like:

Discernment + Small Doable Actions + Noticing = Personal Success

Discern which tasks will move you toward your goals (there’s a whole post about that here).

Take small doable actions and pay attention to your accomplishments.

Notice when you start consuming content or thinking thoughts that put you on the “not enough” train. 

Then repeat. That’s it. 

It’s the same as the old adage: How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. 

We could call this Growth Mindset. We could call this Self-Compassion. We could call it simply Being Nice To Yourself. As business owners, we can also call it Success.

Whatever you call it, I’m here for it. 

Real growth, real success, is an individual path that is highly customizable. 

And if it hasn’t been said before, allow me to say it now: 

You Are Enough. 

Your best is enough. Your work is enough. Your magic is enough. Your definition of success is enough. You are enough. 

Don’t let The Hustle tell you otherwise. 

Anything that makes you feel as if your best is not enough is The Hustle in disguise…no matter how many glitter rainbows and fluffy pillows you find on the website.

helen tremethick

***

This is an original post written exclusively for The Blessings Butterfly.


Helen Tremethick is a thought partner & co-conspirator for badass entrepreneurs (and those who want to be). Helen uses a unique methodology called Love & Badassery that helps business owners find the courage, confidence, and clarity they need to show up wholly in their businesses. 

Since 2011, she has worked with hundreds of business owners to clarify their messaging, copy, business models, and transform their self-confidence while doing so. If you’re looking for the skills you need to grow in your business and your life, Helen’s Love & Badassery Motorcycle Club is the right next step for you.

To find out more about Helen, check out helentremethick.com or find her on Instagram @helentremethick.

***

Want some more inspiration? Check out these articles: Inspiration: Doing Hard Things More than Enough Open Letter to a Little Girl

Goddess In The Family

Written by Angela L. Todd, Guest Contributor

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

photo of a statue
Photo by Hert Niks on Pexels.com

I love goddess imagery.

I’m getting to be a big girl and I have started to really tap into the power of that imagery and correlate it to my new size. I say I’m big and strong and I won’t blow away in the wind!

I’m seeing goddesses showing up everywhere, and recently I’ve also been feeling a new important link between goddess culture and my work as a family historian. I am so grateful to Michelle Lewis for inspiring me to explore this spiritual aspect of my work.

I specialize in histories and archives (papers and photos saved for public research) centered on: women, historically excluded populations, and special needs kids.

My way into this work is usually through the much more popular idea of family history. That’s where the non-dominant folks seem to be allowed to be.

Unearthing a matriarchy is my dream job! I feel so lucky, so blessed, so called… to do this important work that I hope will shift the path of patriarchal cultures around the world. Seems reasonable, haha.

summer building garden park
Photo by julia lee on Pexels.com

My first goddess

In the 1980s I did some family systems healing work with John Bradshaw for a weekend.

Barely past my teens, I was a little Maine girl in a huge California auditorium being led through my first guided visualization.

We spent a lot of time getting in touch with our inner child. Bradshaw asked us to imagine an unshakable supporter of that inner child — a fierce defender. A thing that we could always call up and call on.

I imagined a great grandmother … A big white woman with a sack dress, a grimace, and a huge pitchfork!  She doesn’t have a name but this woman still comes to me and I love the look of her in my mind and I feel her strength. She is unfuckwithable – and bigger than this stock image.

No, I didn’t go on to find this specific woman in my family history — but some version of her is in all of our long histories.

I propose the goddess imagery that I’ve grown to love actually stands in for them, for all the amazing women in our lineage whose stories we do not know.

Yes every woman does seem heroic to me. Let me share some of the amazing women I’ve “met” with you:

  • A Black woman who started her local NAACP chapter, and rose through its ranks to become president. She was a force for justice in her community and she saved everything: meeting minutes, her letters to the editor, a copy of her letter to the local emergency room about her racist encounter (25 years later, she was on the board of directors of that hospital). She even saved her hate mail. Her documents show real truths about the power of women, the insidiousness of racism and the constancy required to combat it. Happily, this collection is now safely housed at a university, so future historians can know all of it.
  • A Jewish woman emigrated from Russia in 1919. Her spouse lived hours away at a camp to perpetuate their heritage; she remained in the big city. She raised four daughters mostly alone, working three jobs long before “women entered the workforce” during World War II. This collection, including 100 years of photos, is headed to a repository for Jewish families.
  • A white rural grandmother did double the work during the 8 weeks of fall harvest. All day she worked in the fields; at night she was doing housework (hearty packed lunches for the next day, women nightly meals, and laundry). And she still said “we loved it because we all got to be together; it was so much less lonely.”
  • A Black sharecropper’s daughter was recruited to teach and write for the newspaper and sent each of her ten children to college. She was a devoted wife, a consistent poll worker, and represented her church (both the first one, and the second one that replaced it after it was burned down) at mostly white regional and national events: a pillar in the community. Hundreds attended her funeral in the deep south.
  • One Italian family came to me suspecting a devious past had led to their material comfort… As it turns out the wealth came down the maternal line and was not recognizable in traditional gender roles. Nobody had ever spoken of it.
  • A white divorced mom brave enough to take jobs she wasn’t quite qualified for so she could both escape a current handsy boss and put food on the table for her kids.
  • Most families that I’ve worked with have strong, driven women who never married and gave themselves wholly to the church, the Navy, or to helping other families. Sometimes they tell me “I think she was a lesbian — but don’t put that in there!”
woman in white dress standing on brown grass field
Photo by Lucretius Mooka on Pexels.com

Once we uncover the women from generations past, we start to see where we fit in the path. And where we are in the path is so powerful.

angela l. todd

I know you’re feeling how remarkable our female ancestors are. Every woman I’ve uncovered has endured, overcome, or succeeded. You’re probably also feeling the thoroughness with which these women have been neglected over time.

And in history, neglect is synonymous with erasure.  They are not included in our global, national, local, or even family histories most of the time.

I believe that we have been replacing our own forgotten foremothers with a much more abstract goddess image. When you trace your history, you will see the goddesses emerging. You will see your divine connection. Connections

Our mutual friend Michelle Lewis says: “People’s stories from generations past are pieces of us that we carry forward.” And I agree wholeheartedly.

Once we uncover the women from generations past, we start to see where we fit in the path. And where we are in the path is so powerful.

The more we look, the deeper we drill, we see the power in the present: “I’m the piece that’s bringing it all back together. You may go through thinking you’re the one that’s wrong, you’re the one that’s out of stuff. But actually it’s like no honey, you’re bringing everybody back in.  You’re healing pieces from before you that weren’t able to be in their fullest expression.”

If this is resonating and you are goddess-curious, I invite you to consider joining me to uncover one of the goddesses in your lineage. The program is called Finding A Foremother: For Women Who Want to Save the Story of A Woman Who Came Before. I have a special discount for friends of The Blessings Butterfly, available HERE. We meet Wednesdays at 7pm Eastern, and the next session begins January 5.

History doesn’t just happen, it is actually made by saving — and researching — the records of what happened. Let’s make history together!

Angela L. Todd

Archivist, Historian, Activist

I have always been THAT girl — the one talking to little old ladies in the grocery store; the one reading a parade of women’s biographies, autobiographies, and history; the one asking my kid where the women are and where are they going to live on that Lego space ship… I’m always looking for where the women are, and what their stories are. I say it, and I believe it: every woman has a story worth saving.

I love having long white hair and I LOVE being in my 50s.

I’m on a mission to capture women’s stories.


I am working to save stories usually relegated to the sidelines of history — especially those of women, but also workers, activists, community groups, or salons.


I spent 18 years as “archivist and senior research scholar” in a science archive at a top research university: curating 30,000 portraits from daguerrotype to digital and ferreting out women to add to the biographical files. I gave up on dead people and now I help living women make history. That means you.

Connect with Angela: www.angelaltodd.com

Want some more good reads about empowerment through spirituality? Try these: The 4th Pillar: Explore [Your] Divinity (Part 1: The Bigger Picture) The 4th Pillar: Explore [Your] Divinity (Part 2- Holding a More Expansive View) The 4th Pillar: Explore [Your] Divinity (Pt 3- Divine Character)

A Journey of Sexual Healing

By Stacy Walker, Guest Contributor

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

anonymous woman with rainbow light on face
Photo by Wings Of Freedom on Pexels.com

It’s been just over five years, five years since I’ve had any intimacy. No sex, no kissing and no cuddles.

This wasn’t initially my decision, and at first for a long while, I’ll be honest it felt like a slow torturous death for me. Because in many ways it was. Most of the suffering starting out was because it wasn’t my choice. But I was the one that actually initiated it, without realizing at first.

I am a very physical woman, touch is my life force recharge. I love to have sex, and wanted it often, like at least every few days often, if not more. After my first divorce I refrained for a while, but once I reopened myself to it, the flood gates opened. They opened to a dangerous proportion.

I wasn’t reckless with situations, but I did quickly align myself with someone else who used sex as a distraction and addiction. The two of us getting together on weekends was a blur of sweat and showers. Often times topping off at twenty plus rounds in a weekend. It was quickly going from unleashing my sexual goddess and experiencing the best orgasms of my life, to numbing out and not being able to get enough.

Looking back on this and the one eighty turn I did after a few months of this indulgence, is an obvious intervention of the Divine.

woman wearing mesh blue dress lying on gray concrete floor
Photo by Ferdinand Studio on Pexels.com

Going Deep

It was during my birthday dinner with a long table of my new friends, that I got the ping. The notification that would launch my Soul into a long and tumultuous journey. It was my next ex husband messaging me via match.com. And my universe instantly shifted. So much so that within the first week of communication with this new man, I abruptly ended it with my recent sex companion. Cold stop. Which is now ironic, because as it turns out, that would be the last occasion for me to actually have a more functional sex life, as dysfunctional as it was. That was nearly ten years ago.

After a few weeks of corresponding with my now recent ex husband, we decided to meet in person. I was immediately enthralled with him. And when we said goodbye and he kissed me at my car, there in the late afternoon sun, the earth and my world shifted. For the first time in my life since I was a little girl, I was acutely aware of the dramatic change in the air and atmosphere around me, and within me. I knew in that instant that my life was about to radically change, and it did.

I was enraptured with this man, so much that I didn’t even notice at first that he wasn’t reciprocating any sexual body language. That he was actually just going through the motions and leaned heavily on his ability to dazzle me with his words and kissing. I was in it for the long haul, it was a spell, a spell as it turns out that my Soul had orchestrated. And that the energy shift I felt when he first kissed me was our Souls reigniting a long standing contract, one that now needed completion, and was necessary to launch me into a long initiation into the dark night of my own Soul. So that I could be the anchored and authentic Soul Guide I am now.

Sex was complicated from the start, he was always scrambling to avoid it, and I was always desperately wanting it, with him. Because I was so wildly attracted to him like I have never been with a man before, yet he kept me at an arms length. At first it was all about excuses and philosophies about wanting it to be different this time, and needing to still heal from ex’s cheating on him, etc. All the while talking about and flaunting his sexual experiences with others, and still showing obvious signs of being a womanizer. So many red flags, one after another after another. It was quickly becoming a mine field of red that no one could navigate. Yet I stayed.

It was like I had no choice, for the first time in my life I was going head first into something that made no sense, all I could do was feel. Feel the potential and feel the activation I felt in my entire body even just thinking of him. Which of course was just a new addiction. But also more, because my Soul actually was inviting me to see this through and to initiate my spiritual awakening. We did occasionally have sex, and with my level of attraction and addiction for all things him, I didn’t even notice how dysfunctional and lacking it really was. I was so far gone that the slightest crumb of affection and touch was all I needed, while pining and obsessing the entire time in between occasions, as to when I would get more. He was literally starving me sexually, which led to his ability to control me. This was his Souls ‘in’, in this contract playing out between us.

By the time his behavior shifted from this repeating cycle between just us to taking his toxic behavior outside of our relationship and using other women to hurt me, I was too far gone.

calm young woman looking at camera through broken window
Photo by Hebert Santos on Pexels.com

Coming to the Surface

The story that played out between us is an entire novel, a novel of Souls, shadows, victimhood, and eroticized wounds. We eventually married, which is when the sex dried up even more, from once or twice per month, to once every two months. But I was content suddenly, because he was finally ‘mine’ and he was content in knowing he ‘had’ me. So I relaxed into this new rhythm for a while, until just a few weeks before our one year anniversary when I took a trip to the beach with friends.

There on the beach at sunrise one morning I asked my friend to help me pray for healing between my husband and I, and for our sexual healing. This is the moment that I initiated the ending of my sex life (for now), and my journey into celibacy, without even realizing it. Because what we are praying for often shows up differently than we think it should, than we initially want it to. That what we are actually praying for is at the core of what we are wanting help with, but not at the surface level frustration of it, but at the root cause and ultimate healing of it.

As it turns out the last time my husband and I had sex before my trip, would be the last time we had sex. On that beach, I had an additional silent prayer, a shift within me, that I never wanted to have to fight for or beg my husband to have sex with me again. What I thought I was asking for was his healing, his emotional capacity to open, and for me to finally have the intimacy with him I so desperately craved. But ‘our’ sexual healing would not be the healing between us and our ability to come together in better harmony. It was to be a separate healing journey, one that would take us both by surprise, and yet not surprise.

It was to be a separate healing journey, one that would take us both by surprise, and yet not surprise

stacy walker

A few months had passed after that prayer, and I was beginning to suffer the death of my sex life, this is not what I wanted, this is not what I asked for, and this wasn’t fair. I tortured myself with what might have gone wrong, what did I say or do wrong. I became resentful and sure I was secretly being punished somehow. I even secretly resented my friend at first, because I thought maybe she did something wrong in the prayer. I had after all just only recently started praying again after giving it up most of my life due to religious trauma, and I had counted on her to guide me, which was just more victim coming to the surface for me to heal.

I spent the next year suffering, I spent it angry and confused. All the while my husband felt more relaxed and calmer than I had ever seen him. But I never begged or tried to seduce him into being with me. I decided to follow his cue to truly heal this and to feel less dysfunctional with our sexuality. As dysfunctional as it was for newlyweds to not have a sexual relationship between them, it was less dysfunctional than our previous way of dealing with it through arguing. So I allowed it space, and in this space I found clarity. Clarity not only between us, but in myself and the reawakening into my psychic gifts. Gifts that I had closed off since I was a little girl, out of self preservation and safety. Safety from other people, not from the spirits that were constantly around me. And through this psychic reawakening, I also experienced my spiritual awakening.

Two years had passed and I was deep into my own personal healing and Soul journey. And things between us relaxed and even became sweeter than I had ever expected, we found harmony in this new space of celibacy and calm. That my old tendencies to lean too hard into my sexual desires, and his old tendencies to avoid it by ironically playing the part of womanizer, stopped. The smoke had cleared for both of us. Here we temporarily found peace, a breather. And here is where truth could finally come through, for both of us, and between us. This was the agreement our Souls had made that sunny afternoon when we kissed next to my car.

light sun cloud japan
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Compassionate Clarity

A few more months into this two year journey had gone by when the biggest truth came through. I was finishing up some laundry and noticed a rubber band that had fallen out of his pants pocket. In that moment everything flashed before me, our history, his history, and his truth. In that moment I knew that his rejection of me sexually, was never about me. It was never about me not being good enough, or sexy enough or even young enough. It was solely about him and what he didn’t even know about himself. That I wasn’t actually aligned with his true sexual orientation. And that none of the women that he desperately flaunted were. It was all so clear. All of it.

The depth of compassion and heartache that immediately flowed through me took me to my knees, I didn’t think of myself. I thought of him and how tortured he must have been his entire life. And I wept. Then I made a new internal vow. Knowing that ultimately our marriage had to end, and that we both needed to live lives that honored our genuine needs. It took another three years, three years of compassion, grace and continued celibacy to steer us towards this ending. It nearly killed me. But I held the container and the space within it for us to come through a new depth of even greater harmony and truth. I poured absolute unconditional love into this man, I showed him the utmost compassion and understanding, and I held the space for him to eventually realize for himself what his truth is, and to find peace within himself.

That this space of celibacy between us enabled him to heal into his truth, and to start to heal a lifetime of wounds around it, and it enabled me to heal years of sexual and psychic trauma too. I am incredibly grateful for this experience between us, I consider it to have truly saved me, although it nearly killed me too, it ultimately did save me. It thrust me into a massive awakening and into the gifts I have carried for lifetimes, waiting to be embodied and used to serve others through, starting with myself and my recent now ex husband.

I am still currently celibate, as I am walking myself through the grieving of finally closing out this Soul agreement between us. Still unraveling the threads that kept me so closely bound for so long. Recognizing now that the intense passion I felt for him was the eroticization of my old wounds, lifetimes of wounds, being touched, triggered and activated for the purpose of healing and integrating. And that the level of intensity I had felt for so long was only a reflection of the intensity of my wounding, and the desperate plea for it to be met and healed.

In the months since this conscious uncoupling, so much has been revealed to me about the masculine and feminine energies within each of us, and between us. Regardless of how we identify, that these energies when brought into harmony through the healing of the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine within us individually, can create Divine Union between us as partners. That we can disarm the eroticized wounds and roles as victims, and embark on the hero’s journey into conscious co-creation. That conscious or even unplanned celibacy can both create a space for clarity and truth, a space of ease and also raw and open opportunity for the deepest sexual healing we could ever have imagined for ourselves. And possibly for those that witness us too.

Regardless of how we identify, that these energies when brought into harmony through the healing of the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine within us individually, can create Divine Union between us as partners.

stacy walker

I look forward to my journey moving forward, of further harmonization within myself, and in aligning with a new partner in true Divine Union and expression. While now knowing that whoever this man is, that he is also an opportunity for any additional wounds being called to the surface for healing and integration, through more conscious awareness, and not misunderstood eroticization. But also that he will be a reflection and celebration of all of the healing and transformations I have carried myself through so far. And that will truly be something glorious to experience and to exalt to.

Stacy Walker is an embodied Oracle, Akashic Records Reader and Teacher. She currently lives in Jacksonville, Florida where she is actively working with the Ley Lines in the area. 
Working with clients remotely primarily through zoom, as a Quantum Healer distance isn’t an issue, nor is time, these initiations, activations and healings are infinite and are just as effective as receiving in person. 

A Session with her provides tremendous insights, understanding and support. You are held by your Guides, and provided with what you are needing most in that moment. Coming away from your session with a greater understanding of many areas of your life and experiences, plus tools to further support your journey. 
Her primary mission is empowerment, through her Online Courses and Services, every individual can unlock their highest potential, and anchor in their own Souls Purpose and Personal Power. 

Connect with Stacy:

I will be offering my Akashic Records Readings at 50% Off for the remainder of the year (2021). 
•There isn’t any discount code required•The discount come off automatically in their shopping cart •No limit on purchases •These Sessions can be Gifted to others 
My New Soul Codex -Akashic Reading & Embodiment is open for enrollment now! Content will be accessible on Dec 1st.

https://anapoenergy.com/
https://anapoenergy.com/collections/access-ascend

Want some more good reads about personal empowerment? Try these: The First Pillar: Whole-Self Love [Part 1- Personal Empowerment Overview] Take Your Power Back I Said YES to Me!

I Said YES to Me!

By Angèle Cristina, Guest Contributor


Picture this: It’s a beautiful day in early September 2021 and I am sitting in a salon in Leipzig, Germany. I have just had my hair coloured pink. Dyeing my hair has been a ritual I have been following for the last 6 years. It is my way of showing my true authentic self. Let me explain….


It all began with me watching cartoons at a very young age. I became obsessed with this particular character who magically transformed from a girl to a showgirl. In the process, her hair changed from copper to turquoise or lilac or anything colourful! Little me was in awe! What I didn’t know at the time was how much this transformation would affect my subconscious and that later in life, it would become my business brand!


Just two days after getting married in 2016, I decided to colour my hair in a fun colour…finally! There I was at the salon excitedly asking for my favourite colour. I didn’t know how this was going to look or feel, but I confidently took a leap of faith and went for it. (This wasn’t the first time I took a leap of faith and I have to share that it gets easier every time!)


TURQUOISE!!!


My hair was turquoise! Oh my gosh. I loved it and I looked like the cartoon character I adored in the 90s. I was filled with this new youthful energy – I felt alive again. To be exact – my inner child became alive again! I hadn’t felt that feeling in a long time. I hadn’t allowed ‘her’ too. I had no idea that colouring my hair would have such a huge impact on me and feel so liberating.


Our honeymoon was in Hong Kong and Bali where I was a hit with locals as I looked like a character from Anime. People stopped me to take photos with me and I loved it. I enjoyed the attention and the smiles I brought to people’s faces. Who knew that hair colour could bring such joy to others too?


Nonetheless, back home after a dream wedding and vacation, the reality of life fell on me like a ton of bricks. I had a teaching meeting lined up soon after the trip and I couldn’t wait to show my colleagues and my boss my new cool hair and wedding ring. See, at the time, I taught drama to kids aged 4 to 15, so having coloured hair was going to work out – or so I thought.

The Ultimatum


The meeting started with some glances and sighs, but I expected that. I was living in Ireland and Irish culture was quite new to me at the time even though it’s quite similar to the one I was brought up in, back home, in Malta. During the break, the boss asked to speak to me outside in private. I was excited to share my honeymoon experiences with her – she was the only ‘friend’ I had in Ireland at the time. But to my surprise, the conversation revolved around my hair. And not in a positive way! My boss felt that my hair would be a distraction for the students and that it would look unprofessional for her company.

At first I thought she was joking. I nearly sniggered at her comments. But her tone set me straight and I dipped my head in embarrassment. She didn’t like it and wanted it gone, covered, changed, hidden. As long as no one saw it, I could keep it. Otherwise I had to dye it a ‘normal’ colour or, “there would be consequences.”


The free spirited me felt like it had just been locked away into a dungeon and the key thrown away. A heaviness lurked over me. It felt like an imprisonment of sorts. What was I to do?


Financially we weren’t in a situation where I could just stop working. However changing my hair felt like ripping away the last months’ happiness off my chest. My inner child had come out to play and she wasn’t ready to go anywhere,
I was torn with this dilemma. It was a very hard decision for me. Brain over heart. Work over fun. Safety over authenticity.


That’s it. Authenticity.


Was I being asked to change who I was to suit a company’s rules? Was I being asked to not show up as my true self, while ironically at the same time I was teaching kids to be who they aspired to be?


I sat with myself for a day. I had little time to make my mind up. In that day I went through all the things I enjoyed doing. All the things that still bring me joy. All the things that make me smile. Give me satisfaction. Light me up inside.
That new hair colour had definitely brought this out again but I did love teaching. However in that moment, right there, I felt that that decision was bigger than me. I felt that if I made the wrong decision, I would regret it for the rest of my life. And I am a No Regrets kinda girl.

The Defining Moment


The word AUTHENTIC kept resurfacing. I had been working with kids for over 15 years by then, and I knew that whilst I was with them, I couldn’t deny being myself. Thoughts kept going through my head, “I can’t wear a hat or hide my hair. I can’t show a version of me to them that is not my true authentic self. I don’t know how to do that. I don’t want to do that!”


I met my boss at a random café I had never been to before. My heart was racing. I had only made one big decision before this so I was quite new to life changing decision making. I was early. I sat with my bottle of still water as I stared outside the window overlooking Cork city centre. There she was. My boss, with her huge smile, making it harder for me to make my call.


Her sprightly manner seemed very jarring to how I felt. She gave the impression that she was sure I was going to stay. It was as if she was certain she had convinced me that I still needed her. Little did she know that she was the one who needed me, but at that point, it was too late. The conversation was very dry. I didn’t want my emotions to take over. I stated the facts and my reasoning and asked her to respect them and not dispute them. She was shocked. She didn’t expect this level of confidence in my turquoise coloured hair self. She nodded her head to show understanding of my point and left.


I did it. I had just said No to being inauthentic. I just said Yes to Me.


My inner child will stay out to play and since then, she has not left.

I did it. I had just said No to being inauthentic.

I just said Yes to Me.

Angèle cristina


We all have defining moments in our life, where we get to choose and stay true to our authentic self. Very few are brave enough to take this step. But you don’t need to do it alone. I coach women+ to show their authentic selves. This is the best version of you, it will be you at your happiest and the most aligned version of you. It’s time to step out and shine.

__

All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

Angèle Cristina is an Intuitive Empowerment Coach from Malta who helps women+ worldwide find their truth, happiness and magic. Through her coaching work, she helps them find their power, confidence, voice and ultimately their true authentic selves.

Connect with Angèle :
Link to my free call: https://angelecristina.as.me/freeconnectioncall
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/angelecristinaofficial/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpGUBFQKdgPdQZRNspuVd3Q

Want some more good reads on being your authentic self? Check these out: When “Love & Light” Is Not Enough: What I Learn From Times of Conflict; Changing the World Your Way; The First Pillar: Whole-Self Love (Part 3- Loving the Body You Live In)

Retrograde Retrospective

Written By Montine Rummel, Guest Contributor

Oct. 13, 2021 

Can we please stop using retrogrades as a scapegoat for our discomfort and lack of preparation?  

As astrology has become more mainstream over the last few years, there has been growing panic surrounding retrogrades because it seems like it’s a fun thing for media companies to sensationalize for clicks and ad revenue (from my perspective, anyway). Looking at some of the language being used in the last few weeks we see “a reign of retrograde confusion” that’s “coming for your relationships” and so many “survival guides” to get one through.  

While astrological retrogrades have had a bad rap for centuries, and they can indeed shake things up, ultimately, we are the ones who are in the driver’s seat for this ride, and it doesn’t need to be a wild one.  

While astrological retrogrades have had a bad rap for centuries, and they can indeed shake things up, ultimately, we are the ones who are in the driver’s seat for this ride, and it doesn’t need to be a wild one.

montine rummel

What is a retrograde? 

A retrograde is when the apparent motion of a planet from the perspective of someone on Earth appears to slow down and even move backwards for a period of time before appearing to move forward again. Here are two of my favorite gifs that show what it would look like if we looked at the same spot in the sky over the course of a few weeks. 

Venus Retrograde

https://i.pinimg.com/originals/b6/32/dd/b632dd33ada494ef64526e0b72519eac.gif

Mars Retrograde (this link goes to a video, not a gif)

https://external-preview.redd.it/W04sJNvzt9QzGptfE0ZiuH8lgRV_-QSpFl1CyyCpP4E.gif?format=mp4&s=cdc7a9c775a19dcfa21e1146f6c2193eed9bdf5

As you can see, the apparent motion of Venus and Mars seems to slow down and move backwards. 

Astrologically speaking, during this time when the planet appears to be slowing down or moving backwards, the energy of the planet also is said to slow down or be stalled. 

This movement was not lost on ancient astronomers and astrologers. Vettius Valens was a Hellenistic astrologer born in 120 AD who wrote “The Anthology” — the longest and most detailed treatise on astrology which has survived from that period (thank you, Wikipedia!).  

It is clear from some of his writing that even 2,000 years ago retrogrades were deemed unpleasant: 

“If the star is setting or proceeding with a retrograde motion, it will be harmful and hazardous.” Vettius Valens, The Anthology, Book III, translated by Mark T. Riley 

Vettius could totally write for Bustle.  

Changing our perception of retrogrades

Even if retrograde energy is here to fuck shit up, we don’t have to let them overtake us. We can accurately predict retrogrades, so much like a hurricane, we can prepare for what is coming. The challenge is that this requires a bit of self-awareness and forethought which is seemingly more of a luxury in this post-capitalist hellscape we call life. The demands of merely surviving in this world don’t often leave everyone with enough time to reflect on the ways we move through and react to it.  

Also, retrogrades can affect us in many ways. Most articles about retrogrades are only written based on how they might affect a Sun sign, which is about as much as general audiences know about their birth chart. But the placement of Mercury in one’s chart, as well as house placements come into play, as well. This article was written a couple years ago and does a great job describing the 3 ways to observe a retrograde based on the planets in your own chart. If you don’t have your birth chart, Café Astrology has a great one for free.  

If this starts to feel overwhelming, just keep in mind that these are just offerings of different perceptions to observe during a retrograde! Remember: a retrograde is only the perception from our viewpoint, it is not the only source of truth. If we were to view a Venus retrograde looking down on the solar system like in the gif above, we would see Venus continue in her orbit as usual; it would not look like she’s slowing down or moving backwards. So, what we can do for ourselves during these times is seek out new perspectives and ways of thinking about whatever energy the retrograde is supposed to represent. For example, if this Mercury retrograde in Libra was “coming for our relationships,” what perspectives would be best to learn and understand?  

Start each retrograde by being curious about at least one aspect and see what you notice! 

woman in gray tank top and black cap
Photo by Anthony Brown on Pexels.com

You could have told me this a few weeks ago… 

Both Jupiter and Mercury will go direct in the next few days, Saturn is already direct, so why mention saying any of this now? If I want to prepare, why not say something BEFORE it happens?  

I’m glad you asked! This is the perfect time to reflect on what exactly did come up for you. Make some time to journal about the following events and their aspects from this year. You don’t need to through every single one of these, of course. They are just some of the available perspectives to choose from! 

This Mercury retrograde in Libra, Sept. 27-Oct. 18, 2021 

man in black suit and black pants painting
Photo by Eva Elijas on Pexels.com
  • Think about anything regarding communication, such as how you communicate with others, methods of communication, and so on. Pay extra attention to anything related to your relationships. What went right? What went wrong?  
  • Think about travel and transportation and anything else related. 
  • Think about thinking, mental clarity, and types of thoughts you have been having, again paying extra attention to anything related to relationships.  
  • Think about any physical feelings or ailments that appeared in your brain, nervous and respiratory systems, and thyroid. 
  • If you have any planets in Libra, look up their aspects and home in on those. 
  • If you have any planets in your seventh house, look up those aspects and home in on those. 
  • Look at the sign Mercury is in on your chart and home in on those aspects, too. 

Jupiter Retrograde in Pisces, June 20-Oct. 18, 2021 

black and white stars during night time
Photo by Guy on Pexels.com
  • Think about anything regarding growth, healing, prosperity, and fortune that happened in these last few months, especially regarding your emotions, dreams, and creativity. 
  • Think about any physical feelings or ailments that appeared related to your liver, kidneys, ears, and tongue. 
  • If you have any planets in Pisces, look up their aspects and home in on those. 
  • If you have any planets in your twelfth house, look up those aspects. 
  • Look at the sign Jupiter is in on your chart and home in on those aspects, too. 

Saturn Retrograde in Aquarius, May 23-Oct. 10, 2021 

brown and beige round fruit
Photo by Giorgi Iremadze on Pexels.com
  • Think about anything regarding your career, authority figures, stability, and achievements, especially regarding individuality, intellect, compassion, and justice. 
  • Think about any physical feelings or ailments that appeared related to your skin, hair, teeth, and bones. 
  • If you have any planets in Aquarius, look up their aspects and home in on those. 
  • If you have any planets in your eleventh house, look up those aspects. 
  • Look at the sign Saturn is in on your chart and home in on those aspects, too. 

The more you pay attention to the different aspects that exist, the more patterns will start to emerge, especially as you do it over time. Then you’ll be able to know exactly which areas of your life you need to pay closer attention to during retrogrades and other astrological events.  

Have you ever noticed that some people don’t seem phased by astrological events when others do? These people might be prepared and ready to roll with them, but they might also have aspects in their chart that don’t get shaken up as much at the time. Observing these events and paying attention to the different aspects of your chart can help you learn what you can roll with and what you need to be more prepared for! 

The upcoming Venus retrograde  

woman statuette during golden hour
Photo by Etienne Marais on Pexels.com

The next planet to go retrograde will be Venus Dec. 19, 2021-Jan. 1, 2022, in Capricorn and will be the perfect time to practice seeking these new perspectives. Here are some things to observe during this time: 

  • Anything regarding beauty, love, unification, and harmony, especially regarding the areas of work, stability, and responsibility. What might benefit from some extra care and attention? 
  • Anything regarding your reproductive system, lower back, throat, or circulatory system. Take extra care of yourself during this time if you have any conditions related to these areas. 
  • If you have any planets in Capricorn, look up their aspects and see what might benefit from some extra care and attention. 
  • If you have any planets in your tenth house, look up those aspects. 
  • Look at the sign Venus is in on your chart and home in on those aspects, too. 

Being aware of the energies and possibilities at play will help give ourselves more a sense of control as we navigate our days and help us learn even more about the way we work and what makes us tick. Knowing how different energies affect us will also allow us to prepare for ones that are heavier or take advantage of the ones that can propel us further than we’d be able to go on our own.  

If you enjoy exercises like this, check out my workbook for 2022! It will include prompts for each Full and New Moon to help you explore your psyche and get to know yourself better. You can find more at BookOfMyShadows.com

Check out a free sample from Book of My Shadows for 2022!


All opinions expressed in this article are the sole perception/experience of the writer, and may not necessarily be shared by Michelle Lewis – The Blessings Butterfly. All Rights Reserved.

About Montine:

Montine Rummel (she/they) is an astrologer and writer who likes to explore her own personal growth using these tools. She has been studying astrology since 1994 and began her personal growth journey in 2016 focusing on shadow work and emotional regulation. In 2017 she had the idea to create her own practice to explore her Shadow using the sign the new and full moons were in as a theme. After sharing the idea with some friends who told her that many more people would be interested in following along, Montine began writing Book of My Shadows and turned it into a yearly zine. She sometimes updates her blog, too!

Want some more good reads about connecting with cosmic energies? Check these out: The Third Pillar: Natural Harmony (Part 1- Connecting with Nature); Embody Your Archetype: The High Priestess; New Moon, New Beginnings