Be Your Own Mother: Tap into Your Intuition and Emerge Even Stronger

How are you doing these days?

I am sure this question will bring up all the feels. Maybe some sadness, confusion, joy, anger, even numbness—or a lively combination of everything in between. After the year we’ve all lived through, a ray of hope is probably beaming into the mixture.

If you’re anything like me, it’s likely you’re spending some of your time preparing to emerge from what I think of as the “space in between.” The space in between is a rich and fertile region where everything and nothing in particular is happening. When you’re feeling impatient, out of sorts, or mired in the busy-ness of your life, going there may seem boring or trivial—after all, there are “more important things to attend to.” 

But I find that when I am fully engaged with the present moment, with its spurts of activity and bouts of stillness, the space in between is a mysterious world full of wonder and possibility. It’s a place where we get to marinate and figure out what’s next for us…where we take the time to determine who we want to be and how we wish to emerge from a period marked by trauma, isolation, and meaningful epiphanies for most of us. 

And it’s a much-needed space for our world right now.

Making Peace with the Limbo

During the pandemic, I’ve valued all the opportunities to slow down and feel…well, everything. I chilled a lot and took the time to really be with the silence, interspersed with sounds of the eagles near my house and rustling trees. That lack of noise eventually extended to my inner world. The whirlwind of thoughts and ideas suddenly slowed down.

In the past year, I had a lot more room to simply feel.

And let me tell you, I’ve been loving it. I feel it in my thoughts, my senses, my ears, my body, and the new gaps of inactivity that have entered my life. This space helps me to notice the things I am not usually aware of and re-attune to the parts of my life that matter the most.

I strongly feel that in this next transition, we’ll be moving toward even more change, both individually and personally. But it can be nail-bitingly tough, even disorienting, to be in the in-between. Lots of us have a better sense of what we do and don’t want…but no clue as to how to get there…or how to make sure it’s even better than we could have imagined.

That’s why I created CHRYSALIS: An 8-Week Group for Emerging Into Your Messy Brilliance. It’s a powerful and exclusive opportunity for a dedicated group of women to dance in the in-between and develop a plan for the beauty we will create as we emerge from the cocoon of this past year.  

I wanted to let women know that when we’re in this together, navigating change can be fun, graceful, and energizing. Being in the in-between can take us out of our heads and into our hearts—into who we really are and who we want to become. 

Admittedly, the space in-between isn’t a place I’ve always enjoyed hanging out in. I’ve associated the space in between with the upheaval of being in constant limbo throughout my childhood, given the unstable nature of my home life—which included moving around and going to upwards of a dozen schools before the age of 17. I never felt settled, but rather, constantly in between phases and possibilities. All of it was painful, uncomfortable, and crazy-making, to say the least.

But when we sit in the space in between, we learn to create powerful intentions for what lies ahead. Instead of just reacting to everything that’s happening at breakneck speed, we leave space to ask ourselves: What do I really want? Who do I want to be? How do I get there?

I have learned that in order to make peace with the in-between and access its innate wisdom, I need to move beyond chaos and overwhelm and sit inside the core of my feminine wisdom: my intuition (a tool from my book, Your Messy Brilliance: 7 Tools for the Perfectly Imperfect Woman, which will be the “guidebook” for CHRYSALIS).

Granted, most of us want stability, and we are currently grappling with having it pulled out from beneath us. But these transitional periods—although they can be the source of a lot of uncertainty—are also rich opportunities for self-exploration. In fact, in order to make them powerful, you simply need to recognize you have control over something priceless: your inner life and what you are choosing to attune to, notice, and offer your attention.

The Antidote to the Current Chaos: Your Intuition

As I write this blog for Mother’s Day like no other, I recognize the power of celebrating the feminine and reorienting to it as a compass for our lives, especially as we step into a new unknown phase. As women and feminine beings, every single one of us is a mother—whether we are mothers to children, passion projects, communities, or anything else that we offer our nurturance and devotion to. This includes our very own selves.

I’ve discovered that one of the most powerful ways for me to mother myself and offer myself compassion and love is to go inward, slow down, and tune in. The power of listening is especially vital now, given the mixed messages that continue to emerge in our divided society. 

We must still ourselves and linger in the quietude that is so essential to navigating the space in between. We must nurture our bodies, minds, and spirits. We must be extremely discerning about the information we are taking in. This means we do not operate from fear and panic but from a place of centered awareness—which allows us to fine-tune our bullshit radar and let go of excess baggage that does not serve us. 

When the noise of the external world becomes too much for us to bear, it is imperative that we as women tap into our superpower: our intuition.

An Excerpt from Your Messy Brilliance: 7 Tools for the Perfectly Imperfect Woman

Below, I’m including an excerpt from Chapter 4 of Your Messy Brilliance, that I hope will help you develop an even more powerful relationship with your intuition in this fraught and difficult time.

There are plenty of ways you can learn to exercise your intuition. Clearing your mind daily and tuning into your body by meditating is one surefire method of cleaning up the external clutter and gauging your internal climate. In addition, you can keep an intuition journal; write down what your intuition is telling you, based on sensations in your body, and report what happens when you act on this subtle knowledge. Having a record of these moments will hone your confidence in following your internal voice.

Exercising the right side of your brain, which is where holistic expression and nonverbally based knowledge reside, can also be strengthened through practices like free-writes, painting, dancing, and creativity. If you want to get a feeling for a prospective lover or simply gauge whether your environment is safe, learn to trust the contractions, expansions, and surging fluctuations of your intuition as inroads into information that isn’t always immediately accessible when you’re navigating conventional paths or seeking the “right” answers. You will discover that trusting your intuition is about getting acquainted with your mind, body, heart, gut, and spirit, all at once. You will learn that following your intuition is all about staying in a place of dynamic tension, of riding the wave between peaks and valleys, remaining open to changes in your sensations and emotions, and continuing to check into your body and sense of your environment rather than dissociating when it becomes too difficult to stay present.

Ask yourself: Where does my intuition generally reside in my body? My gut? My heart? My womb? Wherever you find that voice to be just a little louder and more persistent than usual, be sure to tune in, listen, and trust from a place that honors both the visceral and contemplative experience of being alive.

Many of us are walking around in the world, searching for our power in wealth, success, relationships, or even yoga and meditation. Moreover, we often depend on the people around us—from close friends to spiritual gurus to people who claim to have highly sensitive psychic powers—to give us the answers we are looking for. But as Glinda the Good Witch tells Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, “You’ve always had the power.” It’s just a matter of reclaiming it, noticing it, and being aware of it—and there’s no better way of doing this than learning to act on your intuition, with the following exercises.

Take a Power Pause

This week, when you find yourself feeling stuck or stumped by something in your life—whether it’s a difficult conversation, a frustrating encounter, a big decision you need to make, or a troubling emotion—let yourself stop whatever it is you are doing. Take ten deep breaths. Then, take a couple of minutes to do a quick body scan; starting from your head and moving down all the way to your toes, notice whatever sensations you are feeling in your body. Taking a long pause and bringing your attention back to what is going on in your body can help to neutralize the effects of the spinning mind, which can keep you from receiving your intuition. The power of the pause is that it stops circular thinking in its tracks and makes you far more open to the wisdom that wants to come through.

The True Test: Trust Yourself

It’s a wonderful thing to remain open to the world around you, but the true test of life in and beyond COVID is the ability to go inward and trust ourselves when the world is bursting with chaos and contradiction. So take this opportunity to slow down, breathe, and tune into the radio signal of your intuition. As a woman, as a mother, this is your birthright. Please honor it and let it be a solace to you in these tumultuous and paradigm-shifting times. Let it bring you back to yourself and a peace of mind, body, and spirit that can never be taken from you. Let it guide you with ease and confidence into your “what’s next.” Happy Mother’s Day, soul sister!

CHRYSALIS: An 8-Week Group for Emerging Into Your Messy Brilliance begins Tuesday, May 18. If you join me, you’ll get the very tools you need to make the heart-centered, soul-directed changes that’ll get you through this next transition. Learn more here. And make sure to sign up soon—spots are very limited because I wanted to make this an opportunity for women to get up close and personal with a supportive group of sisters!

Kelly McNelis

About the Author | Kelly McNelis

Kelly McNelis is a mom, wife, friend, mentor, bestselling author of Your Messy Brilliance: 7 Tools for the Perfectly Imperfect Woman, and the founder of global community Women for One. She believes that the “truth” of who we are and what we are capable of lives in our messiness. As women, we beat ourselves up for being too emotional, too chaotic, too much of everything that actually makes us the powerful, creative, brilliant people we are! Kelly’s book is a love song to the “feminine.” The things we believe make us imperfect or not enough are actually the places where our highest potential for joy and creativity lives. Kelly offers her global community opportunities to connect with themselves and each other through inspirational online courses, weekend retreats, and workshops that help women build their confidence and bond us through our similarities and differences. To find out more and to get updates on Kelly’s upcoming courses and workshops, sign up for her mailing list at womenforone.com.

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