Co-Creating Sacred Women’s Circles
“Groups run by women are our psychic turf; our place to discover who we are, or who we could become, as whole independent beings. Somewhere in our lives, each of us needs a free place. A little psychic territory. Do you have yours?” ~~Gloria Steinem
The Central Coast’s 2nd Annual Women’s Symposium was extremely successful. A whopping 90% of the feedback surveys rated it “Excellent!” We were honored to have so many loving, creative and empowered women join together in the same place at the same time.
Keynote speaker, Jean Shinoda Bolen, shared her infinite wisdom, including the power of women’s circles from her book The Millionth Circle: How to Change Ourselves and The World–The Essential Guide to Women’s Circles. As a result, several women have expressed an interest in co-creating circles for women and are asking for guidance on the best approach.
Circles contain their own energy and can be very powerful. Circle time is meant to be sacred. As we enter a circle, we step outside of our everyday routine and enter into a place of great mystery. Never underestimate the power of the circle. It can change us on many levels if we allow ourselves to enter it with an open mind and compassionate heart.
In the spirit of providing encouragement, below are some guidelines I have used in the past for creating a sacred circle:
1. Ask your deepest self for guidance in clarifying your intention for co-creating a circle. You may also want to invite the other women to share their intention. For example, you could explore the following probes:
What do I most deeply desire to EXPERIENCE in my life?
At this unique point in time, with all of my life experiences, what do I most deeply desire to CREATE in my life?
What do I most deeply desire to CONTRIBUTE to life?
Once you’ve clarified the intention for having a circle, decide how often you want to meet, the location, how will the facilitation be shared, how many may attend, etc.
- When you’re ready to begin meeting, take time to prepare yourself before entering the circle. This may be accomplished through a short ritual, prayer, meditation and so forth. The facilitator should be prepared to hold the “rim” of the circle. Please keep in mind that it is not the sole responsibility of the facilitator to ensure the circle is a sanctuary. Everyone contributes to the energy of the circle.
- Honor yourself and the other women in the circle and set your intention for a soulful, heart-opening and empowering experience.
- When another woman is sharing, give her your full attention. Remember that it is a privilege to be a part of each other’s journeys.
- Allow ideas and goals to surface and respect any differences.
- Create “authentic partners” (as Jean Shinoda Bolen mentioned) to empower each other to take action steps and stay on track.
- Practice being mindful and confidential of what is shared. “Circle magic and mystery” is best kept alive by keeping what is said in circle private. Try to remember the sacredness of the circle and honor the beauty and wisdom that manifests as the circle unfolds.
Finally, no matter how we choose to spend our precious life force energy, may we remember the guiding principles that Jean Shinoda Bolen graced us with on March 10th:
Is it meaningful to you?
Will it be fun being with others on this project/cause?
Is it motivated by love?