ReWILD yourself this Woman’s Month

I recently re-read a book that I enjoyed as much the second time around as I did the first. And so I would like to share it with you.

“Women Who Run With the Wolves,” is written by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, a Jungian analyst who urges modern women to get in touch with their inner, intuitive selves. There is, Estes tells us, in our contemporary culture, the expectation that women must be perfect – to behave, be nice, be modest, be polite. This is not only nonsense, it is impossible, because to be perfect means you have to sit perfectly still, and remain stagnant so that nothing changes. To live such a life would be boring to say the least, and not at all productive.

And I agree! Today, Women are indeed cut off from their inner selves, their desires and urges, because they feel pressured to conform to societal norms. Through examples of folklore, fairy tales and dream symbols, Estes helps women to restore neglected intuitive and instinctive abilities.

Just warning, don’t let the title mislead you. Although, according to Estes, wolves and women share a psychic bond in their fierceness, grace and devotion to mate and community, the tales in this book are not about wolves. Drawn from many cultures and eras, exotic, intriguing, even a bit racy, these stories illustrate the ways of the “Wild Woman”, and convince us of the necessity, in order to lead rich, successful and satisfying lives, to reclaim our innate wildness.

“Within every woman there lives a powerful force, filled with good instincts, passionate creativity, and ageless knowing. She is the “Wild Woman”, who represents the instinctual nature of women. But she is an endangered species. For though the gifts of wildish nature belong to us at birth, society’s attempt to “civilize” us into rigid roles has muffled the deep, life-giving messages of our own souls.”

If you are looking for encouragement, for a mantra, for hope in the sometimes, overwhelming endeavour of understanding and relating the innate female experience, this book stands out and was the catalyst for my ReWild Yourself Retreat that I have been designing for a very long time, and now finally I have decided that I am ready to run our first ReWild Yourself Retreat at Woodlands Spa.

We will be taking 8 women on a transformational journey, if all goes well, I plan on running one every single month. Keeping it to 8 women only, to make sure everyone attending gets the most intense benefit imaginable.

Let go of what no longer serves you. Follow your heart. Rediscover your purpose. Face your fear. Reignite your courage. Fall in love with your vision. Stretch your comfort zone. Fuel your soul. Nourish your body. Free your mind. Rewrite your stories of survival into new stories of aliveness.

Life is short. What will you make of it? ReWild Yourself!

This one-day retreat will be hosted on Saturday the 18th of August from 8h30am till 4h00pm at Woodlands, please email me directly to book your spot for R1200 which includes the workshop, light lunch and all refreshments as well as a 90min full body massage – tania@woodlandsspa.co.za

“When sleeping women wake, mountains move” – Chinese Proverb

Over the past year, I struggled to balance what seemed to be the opposing sides of myself. There is this assertive “get-things-done” side of me, to constantly create, be courageous, and do those crazy, fearless things. On the other hand, there is the other side of me which strives to uncover my nurturing, patient, and grounded qualities. It is the side of me that looks with compassion, understanding, and a deeper wisdom. It is the side of me that sees the missing feminine energy and compassion we need to remedy the hurt in this world.

On this journey of self-discovery, I have met countless women who feel exactly the same. They feel stuck, most of our lives happen in the realm of the ordinary, caught in the routine of our daily to-do lists, postponing wonder, ignoring our intuition, dismissing our creativity, quieting our hearts, delaying our hero’s journey for “someday” or “later” when all of our pieces might be aligned.

The Treadmill of Life – I want to get off! But how?

After working 7 days a week, fitting in 4 gym sessions with my personal trainer, driving my kids up and down, most of the time felt like I was required to solve what seemed like “a thousand problems”—I never quite felt caught up with any of my obligations, sleep among them. Even when everything on the day’s list somehow got crossed off, and I was able to collapse into bed at a reasonable hour, I couldn’t rest more than a few hours at a time. My mind was constantly spinning, I just couldn’t shut the lists, the obligations, or the noise off. Ever. And so rather than toss and turn and think of all that I should be doing, I just got up and did it, whatever it was. I got a lot done between the hours of 1 and 3 a.m. But during the day, I was always on the edge of some major breakdown.

I am not alone. A study found that 16% of women age 25 to 44 reported feeling “very tired,” “exhausted,” or otherwise worn out most days, compared with 9% of men in the same age range. Is it because women are taking on more than their share? Or because they have difficulty saying no?

The answer, probably, is both.

We know that an historically high number of women are now the primary breadwinners for their households. A research report shows that among families with kids under the age of 18, 37% of wives earn more than their husbands, up from 11% in 1960. At the same time, although women are contributing to the family pot more significantly than ever before, their domestic responsibilities are not shrinking; studies show, for example, that working women still do more household requirements than men.

And yet women keep saying yes to work, to family, to most everything.

So eventually I have realized that my chronic list making, and task mastering, might have been helping me organizationally, but it was hindering me mentally. And it wasn’t doing my family, my friends, or anyone else I seemed to value any favours either. If I couldn’t do it for myself, I needed to learn to let go for everyone else.

Until women choose to take care of themselves, however, they’ll continue to suffer most.

Here’s to putting yourself first this Woman’s month, and to saying no more often to obligations that no longer serve you.

Happy Woman’s day for the 9th everyone.

Love, Tania

Get in touch

Our team at Woodlands Spa invites you to enjoy a sensory and meaningful experience which will leave you with a sense of vitality, new found energy and joy. To make a booking, call us on 010 010 5026 or send an email to bookings@woodlandsspa.co.za.