Beliefnet
The Queen of My Self

June is traditionally the month for weddings and it is also now celebrated as Gay Pride month. Love is in the air all around. This is a juicy time of making whoopy.

But while June is the jolly season for Brides and Grooms, Brides and Brides and Grooms and Grooms, it is important to remember that the most primary and important love is that of Self Love. All relationships are built on the respect, esteem and affection that we have for our self.

 

Phenomenal Woman

By Maya Angelou

 

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size

But when I start to tell them,

They think I’m telling lies.

I say,

It’s in the reach of my arms

The span of my hips,

The stride of my step,

The curl of my lips.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

 

I walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,

And to a man,

The fellows stand or

Fall down on their knees.

Then they swarm around me,

A hive of honey bees.

I say,

It’s the fire in my eyes,

And the flash of my teeth,

The swing in my waist,

And the joy in my feet.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

 

Men themselves have wondered

What they see in me.

They try so much

But they can’t touch

My inner mystery.

When I try to show them

They say they still can’t see.

I say,

It’s in the arch of my back,

The sun of my smile,

The ride of my breasts,

The grace of my style.

I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

 

Now you understand

Just why my head’s not bowed.

I don’t shout or jump about

Or have to talk real loud.

When you see me passing

It ought to make you proud.

I say,

It’s in the click of my heels,

The bend of my hair,

the palm of my hand,

The need of my care,

‘Cause I’m a woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal woman,

That’s me.

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™: http://www.donnahenes.net/queen/consult.shtml

***

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

 

 

June is traditionally the month for weddings and it is also now celebrated as Gay Pride month. Love is in the air all around. This is a juicy time of making whoopy.

But while June is the jolly season for Brides and Grooms, Brides and Brides and Grooms and Grooms, it is important to remember that the most primary and important love is that of Self Love. All relationships are built on the respect, esteem and affection that we have for our self.

 

How I Transformed My Life After 50 – Part 2

By Diane Gilman

 

5 Easy Ways to Shift Your Thinking from Aging to Ageless

Make the List: Five years ago I made a list of everything about myself I didn’t like and wanted to change. On the same page I made a list of all things feminine I wanted to embrace or achieve. No different from a general attacking the enemy on a battlefield, I turned around each area of my life. Overnight my life went from Bucket List to Boundless!

Play in Today: In my twenties, designing for Jimi Hendrix and other rockers from San Francisco to London, “living in the moment” was easy. Throughout the years, evolving into “The Jean Queen” on HSN, I’m confronted with staying relevant in fashion and television — two industries driven by youth and beauty. My secret? Every morning I look myself in the mirror and say, “Today is the youngest you will ever be. What are you going to do with it?” Don’t just stay in today… make it a point to play in today!

Break Through the Age Barrier: Recently I was asked, “When are you going to stop making jeans for old ladies?” I had to laugh. “Honey,” I replied, “there is nothing old about making ladies feel sexy at any age.” Challenge yourself to break through the preconceived ideas handed down to us as women. As if you’re in your fifth, sixth, or seventh decade, you must be “an old lady.” Forget it! Just like Chuck Yeager breaking the sound barrier, my mission is to break through the age barrier by redefining what’s sexy for Baby Boomer women now.

Picture This: Every moment of my life I imagine myself as a camera, with my heart as the aperture. I capture it all: the sights, smells, words, feelings. When you feel shut down, ask yourself, “Can I open my heart to new possibilities?” I’m living proof that when you do, more opportunities, productivity, fun and love are just waiting to come through. Remember, even a little light creates a big picture.

Think Tapestry, Not Atrophy: My work enables me to travel the world, crossing paths with women of all lifestyles, ethnicities and ages. It’s human nature to compare how we feel on the inside with how others appear on the outside. When that happens, think tapestry, not atrophy. Every woman’s journey is a vibrant thread weaving its own unique path through the fabric of life. Turn a walk down the grocery aisle into a celebration of yourself. Make the ordinary extraordinary!

If you had told me going from aging to ageless was this easy, I never would have believed you. So along with everything else, I learned the hard way: on my own. Now that these five simple shifts in my thinking have created the five most successful, romantic and surprising years of my life, I want to share them with all my Baby Boomer sisters. It’s never too late to make life better and make your dreams come true. So turn it around! Plant the seed that you, too, can age agelessly. Tend to the garden of your life by taking simple actions. And watch yourself blossom bigger than ever into the best Baby Bloomer you can be!

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™: http://www.donnahenes.net/queen/consult.shtml

***

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

 

June is traditionally the month for weddings and it is also now celebrated as Gay Pride month. Love is in the air all around. This is a juicy time of making whoopy.

But while June is the jolly season for Brides and Grooms, Brides and Brides and Grooms and Grooms, it is important to remember that the most primary and important love is that of Self Love. All relationships are built on the respect, esteem and affection that we have for our self.

 

How I Transformed My Life After 50 – Part 1

By Diane Gilman

 

“Fascinating!” said a group of TV executives on a flight from New York who recognized me as the “Queen of Jeans” with over one million loyal “Boomer Consumers” on HSN. For the next few hours we volleyed around the idea of my own reality show about the unique advantages of being a Baby Boomer. And why not? Reviewing the last four decades, I’m more at peace than when I was 20, more focused than when I was in my 30’s, more glamorous than when I turned 40, and absolutely more “at the top of my game” than when I was in my 50’s. The thought of inspiring millions of new viewers thrilled me. “We love it!” one TV exec said. “But does anyone want to watch old people on TV?” “Old people?” I corrected them. “Who said anything about old people?”

Don’t get me wrong ­— I live with the aches and pains that come with schlepping around a body for six-plus decades. And I’ve endured what felt like endless grief and exhaustion when I was my husband’s caregiver through seven years of battling cancer. When he passed, I immediately felt a life of love, intimacy, and partnership had abandoned me, too. In my mid-50’s, feeling defeated, I was alone and barely recognized myself. I couldn’t even fit into a pair of jeans. So squeezing back into the dating world was definitely out of the question. I felt lost.

Then it got worse!

Suddenly I realized the women in my family live well into their nineties. Thirty more years of hopeless loneliness? No way! That was my “Rosa Parks” moment. It was then I made the decision: “Diane, stop going to the back of the bus! You don’t need permission from anyone to live life on your terms. Just stop the clock. Age agelessly!”

Our perception of growing old is not a by-product of aging — only a by-product of ageism. Stand-up for yourself if your contribution has gone from innovative to irrelevant in your profession. Scream, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it!” if you’ve gone from admired to undesired in your romantic life. This revolution will be televised (and tweeted, texted, and immortalized on YouTube!) but it has to start with you.

 

Tomorrow: How I Transformed My Life After 50 – Part 2

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™: http://www.donnahenes.net/queen/consult.shtml

***

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations to the winners of The Queen of My Self book giveaway:

Terri Miller, FL

Anna Mills, OH

Clara Vaughan, MO

Enjoy!

 

June is traditionally the month for weddings and it is also now celebrated as Gay Pride month. Love is in the air all around. This is a juicy time of making whoopy.

But while June is the jolly season for Brides and Grooms, Brides and Brides and Grooms and Grooms, it is important to remember that the most primary and important love is that of Self Love. All relationships are built on the respect, esteem and affection that we have for our self.

 

I just returned from a weekend in Pennsylvania where I presented a full schedule of Queen of My Self workshops and rituals at Where Womyn Gather, an annual women’s spirituality festival.

The women who participated were an eclectic bunch. They ranged in age from 30 to 66. They were heterosexual and lesbian; married, single, divorced and widowed; mothers, grandmothers and childless by choice or circumstance. They were every shape, size and color.

They were nurses, healers of various modalities, social workers, astrologers, librarians, entrepreneurs, teachers and retired women. They came from New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Georgia, Maryland, Florida.

They were Every Woman.

What they all had in common was their desire to achieve an enhanced sense of Self: Self-acceptance, Self forgiveness, Self-respect, Self esteem, Self-confidence, Self-identification, Self-direction, Self-appreciation, Self-love.

Their common goal was to step into their sovereignty: To find their center and stay in their authenticity. To say what they mean and ask for what they want. To speak with conviction in a clear and loud voice. To be heard.

This is the program we followed:

The Full Spirited Four-Fold Goddess Workshop

A presentation and discussion of the new Queen archetype and how it completes the inadequate Triple Goddess model.

High Tea with the Queen

A playful gathering where we dressed in garden hats, pearls and gloves and shared tea and cookies as we got to know each other better.

Stepping into Sovereignty: An Initiation for Queens-to-Be

A ritual of personal empowerment that included blessings, sharing, releasing obstacles and resistance, drumming and chanting.

The Queen’s Guide to Power

An investigation of what power is and isn’t and how it is used. A rethinking of how to be powerful in a new, non-patriarchal way.

A Crown and Scepter Making Playshop

What fun we had creating the symbols of our sovereignty to be used in the Crowning Ritual.

The Royal Coronation Ceremony

Our time together culminated in ritual in which we proclaimed our intentions as empowered Queens and crowned our own head with the authority to manifest them.

I was so impressed, honored and touched by the level of trust that we created, which facilitated deep sharing, profound honesty and vulnerability. There was lots of weeping as the layers of resistance were shed, and also exuberant joy, growth and transformation.

After two workshops, two rituals and two special events, the women all left — ready, willing and able — to create and live their dreams. To walk their talk. To manifest their own destinies. To rule their own domains.

What a glorious time!

I will be there again next year from June 7-12 to offer the same program. Mark your calendars and plan to join me for a fabulous experience.

In the meantime, I am available to facilitate Queen of My Self workshops for your group, club, school or gathering of friends.

Have Crown Will Travel! Just contact me if you are interested: thequeenofmyself@aol.com

*****

Donna Henes is the author of The Queen of My Self: Stepping into Sovereignty in Midlife. She is the Midlife Midwife™ offering counseling and upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

Consult the MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™: http://www.donnahenes.net/queen/consult.shtml

***

The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

 

 

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