In life, as women we’ve been taught to behave a certain way for approval, acceptance and favorability. We’ve been told to be nice, selfless, devoted, the perfect wife. Not too loud, not too opinionated, not too intelligent. Well all of that was patriarchal BS. In this episode, I sit down with author Majo to discuss the five good girl myths that are holding us back and how to reclaim our full sovereignty. I also share the good girl myth I fell under and how I overcame it.
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Episode 310: Breaking the Good Girl Myth with Majo Molfino
By Sahara Rose
Namaste. It’s Sahara Rose and welcome back to The Highest Self Podcast, a place where we discuss what makes you, your Soul’s Highest Evolvement.
If it’s your first time listening – Welcome! I am so grateful that the Great Awakening has brought you here.
If you’re here all the time – What’s up? How are you? And I am so excited to have you for this Episode because we are talking about one of my favorite subjects – Dismantling the Patriarchy (you know, just another day in the life). And if you’re a guy listening, it’s important for you to do this work too.
So, a lot of you might know my story – I speak about it much more in other Episodes, but esentially, I grew up never, never ever thinking I would have a career writing books; speaking; Podcast hosts, and helping women activate their most goddess selves – that definitely was not on my periphery.
I thought I was going to be a Human Rights Lawyer and sacrifice my life for the Cause, and I was very much a huge Activist, and I still am, but it’s taken on a different form. And it wasn’t until this Episode that I realized that it was exactly co-related to one of these ‘Good Girl’ archetypes, which we’re going to speak about in this Episode.
So, I always knew for myself, that I always had the sacrificial energy to myself; that I always wanted to sacrifice my life, essentially to create change, but it’s interesting because I thought that to create change I had to sacrifice my life. And that in itself is that Myth that I had to break through; that to make a change in the world I have to let go of my joy; let go of my desires; give up my life for something else. I always thought that the way that you can be of service is to have no mutes or wants of your own, and a lot of us have grown up receiving that message, being told “Oh you’re such a good girl because you put your siblings first; or because you’re so selfless; or because you took care of your younger siblings” or whatever it was, we were always told that the good girl will be appraised and rewarded, and get further in life; get married to a good man who takes care of you – and this is some patriarchal bullshit! Because you don’t need to be a good girl to be protected and safe – and you can protect yourself; you don’t need a man to do it.
And on top of that, especially on the concept of sacrifice, which we’ll dive into in this Episode, you can help the world while you’re still helping yourself, it doesn’t have to be one or the other. In fact, now, my work is helping people discover their Dharma, which is the highest point of service, which is in alignment with your highest point of Joy. So it’s merging the two, not seeing them as separate, but seeing that thing that you really love to do, that sets your soul on fire; that makes you want to continue to just be fully in it – that’s actually how you can make the greatest change in humanity.
So I sit down with my friend Majo who just wrote this incredible book all about breaking the good girl myth, and we talk about what her five good girl archetypes are, these rules that we have been told from the time that we were children (we’ll break it down in this Episode) and how to overcome all of it. And the Light and the Shadow, because it’s not all a bad thing, sometimes these patterns that we have, there is Light, there is medicine in it. However, most of the times it’s unconscious so we’re operating from the Shadow side versus Activating it, so we can look at the Light in it.
So, we dive deep into what these common good girl myths are; how we are told to behave a certain way to get appraisal by society, and how to, first of all become cognoscente of it; and then second of all, reprogram your mindset so you aren’t operating from this place of essentially fear – fear of not being accepted; fear of sticking out; fear of being too loud, too much, too smart, too whatever it is – and claim your full sovereignty.
So, if you are interested in expression, and especially those of us who might be newer to our spiritual paths, who are like “I don’t know how to handle my parents in going after what it is I want;” or maybe you grew up in a religion that is very structured (we speak about that in this Episode with Majo, growing up very Catholic – how to overcome that).
So wherever you are on your journey, we always have ounces of this work that we still get to do, and we can continue to look back on these threads from our lives and see how it really does come full circle because at the same time the way that we can highest serve is also related to our highest myth that we had to break through.
So, without further ado, let’s welcome Majo to The Highest Self Podcast.
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Welcome Majo to The Highest Self Podcast, it’s so great to have you here!
And the first question I’d love to ask you is what makes you Your Highest Self?
What makes me my Highest Self is having compassion and being able to see the Dark and Light sides of myself and other people, and hold both of those extremes in Love. I feel like that’s one of my super-powers, is like I’m someone who is really able to go into the shadow, into the conditioning, into the trauma, and see it, and see it as somebody else does or see it in myself, and still hold it with compassion. I feel like that’s something that roots me into being my Highest Self when I can do that.
So beautiful, yes, and it’s so needed right now when people are really at odds with each other to be like – everyone wants the same thing, we want healthy Planet, healthy children, healthy everything, but we’re all just been exposed to different news outlets, world experiences etc. that make us think the solution is different, but really the desire is all the same.
Yeah, and are we willing to do the work in order to obtain those things at looking at the hard things of the hard parts? And I really appreciated seeing you being vocal during Black Lives Matter and Anti-Racism work – we’re doing that we can’t spiritually bypass these things.
Yes. And now with all of the Human Trafficking that is coming to surface – so it’s like the darkest of the dark now – as Light workers, it’s up to us to bring it to Light. And then also committing to our own Dharmas and our own inner work and not letting go of all of that too and falling into the despair, so it’s that balance.
And in your new book “Break the Good Girl Myth” you talk a lot about yourself and your life of growing up, trying so hard to be the good girl, which I think all of us relate to, to an extent, that’s how society conditions us and how it stems from Patriarchy.
So can you talk a little bit more about how this ‘Good Girl Myth’ comes from patriarchal values in our society?
Yes. I take the time in the beginning of the book to lay the foundation. And one of the foundational concepts is: Let’s get on the same page about what the Patriarchy is. And it’s not a group of men that we point at and blame; it’s actually a cultural, social system that privileges men over other genders. That has been around for thousands of years, it’s global, it’s old, it has friends like White Supremacy and Unchecked Capitalism. So it works with all these other systems, but it’s something that exists outside of us, but also exists within us. And one of the ways it exists within us is the ‘Good Girl’ archetype.
And so the ‘Good Girl’ forms, and I describe it as a protective mechanism we develop because we’re born into the patriarchy as girls and women; and we feel like “Okay, we’re already second place; we’re already the “weaker” half of the Planet, and so how do we cope with that? What are the coping strategies we develop to assimilate and to get along with the men in our lives, but also the broader system and culture?
One of the things we do is we develop this protection, layer of protection, and like an armor or a mask – that’s what the ‘Good Girl’ is. And for me it had a lot to do with being a daughter of immigrants and also wanting to please my parents, particularly my father who was a scientist and a researcher, and who had left his country, and so a lot of our narrative centered around him and what he had done.
And so, it’s been a process for me Sahara, of unlearning a lot of that early conditioning that I picked up as a daughter of immigrants and as a high achiever, and a good girl.
I so relate to everything you’re saying, as also a daughter of immigrants, and my dad was a scientist too, and he went to MIT and he got all these degrees from there and would always talk about how he was the smartest kid in Iran and came here and did all of these things that I always felt like I would never amount to him. But also the way I could receive his love was to try to be anywhere close to as “successful” as he was and then yeah, it sets you up for this perpetual disappointment because you’re never going to be that. And it’s sad because often times, as children of immigrants, we have a really hard time exploring this topic because of all the guilt. I know for me, I was like “Well they also sacrificed so much for me, and I wouldn’t be in this country if it wasn’t for them;” and you also just see how they really are trying their best. So I think a lot of children of immigrants don’t even touch the subject because they don’t want to, at all, think that their parents did anything bad, even though it’s not that they did something bad, it’s just this unconscious block that happens.
Yeah, I remember this pivotal conversation I had with my aunt in Argentina when I was in my early twenties, in an existential crisis about what my purpose was, and one of the things I told her (she was an aunt who had stayed back in Argentina, my parents had left) and I said “Well my parents sacrificed so much for me; I feel like they did so much for me; I had to repay them” and my aunt looked at me and said something that really changed (I’m really grateful to her for this; she’s a very direct woman) and she said “You know, your parents also left for themselves.” And when she said that it freed up a lot of energy; the pressure that I had felt “Oh they do it for their children to give up opportunities” I was like “Actually, they wanted to leave their country, they were tired of the dirty war, economic collapse – they did it for themselves as well” so that helped alleviate some stuff. And also seeing my parents as their own people, with their own decisions and create some separation. And that was one of the major turning points. One epiphany, through a conversation I had that allowed me to start to be okay with disappointing my parents.
So huge and so major, I think that we put our parents on this pedestal especially when the story of sacrifice is narrated. I remember I had this limiting belief that American kids got to live their dreams and take risks, and take study abroad years, and all these things but I can’t because my parents sacrificed so much so I, basically, this lifetime is indebted to them.
And it’s so fascinating, because then, when you for example look at yoga – most of the yoga teachers in the West are white – why did that happen? Well it’s because most Indian kids were told “Go become a doctor; go become a pharmacist; go become an engineer; go become this; go become that” that then going to India and exploring yoga, for most Indian parents, even though it comes from there, would not be enough so it’s interesting how – it’s like the Maslow’s Hierarchy – the more you have those basic needs and those wants and those desires met, the more you reach for self-actualization. And I think that we’re all born somewhere different, and I’ve had to realize that my parents probably, like yours, because immigration comes with so much root chakra, feeling unsafe in your society; feeling unsafe in your body, that that creates us starting from this place of thinking about that. Whereas a lot of kids whose parents never experienced that get to start off of like “What do I really deeply desire in my soul?”
Totally, yes! I think that’s right. I always just went with the program with what my parents and family expected of me until it caught up to me in my early twenties – and I’m in a dead-end job, I’m in a cubicle, I’m breaking-out on my skin, I have digestive problems, my body’s screaming at me, and I’m feeling soul crushed – I felt like I checked all the boxes, why aren’t I happy? And then sort of having that moment to be like “Oh, I’m playing a role; I’m wearing a costume; I’ve been a good girl my whole life” and allowing that unraveling to start to happen.
I like to tell a lot of my clients and listeners – it’s not one epiphany that changes everything. I’m sure you’ve seen this, it’s such a zigzag, the journey is not linear, it’s really messy so it’s a combination of having these moments of awakening and then forgetting, and then awakening – and that was pretty much all of my twenties. Even after quitting that first job, I ended up going back into a similar job. It’s like those of us who have a break-up and then we go back to a similar type of relationship – it takes a while to break a pattern, and for me it took a lot of key moments – in fact, often leaving work-school and being sort of in different spaces. For example, Burning Man was a big moment on my journey that allowed me to break out. And I know that you talked about openly, I mean, on your Podcast you talk about everything, you know, medicines; ceremonies have supported me; experimenting with psychedelics have really supported me in breaking out of the ‘Good Girl Myth’.
So when you began going on that journey and you felt “I need to make a change but my parents are going to be so disappointed in me” – How did you deal with that?
I remember having these internal moments especially in my early twenties where I started to see there was a cost; when I went along with what my parents wanted. And once I started to see that the cost was greater than the benefit, I was almost like, I was like “Okay, what is this costing me? I’m feeling unfulfilled; I’m not aligned with my purpose; I don’t even know what my purpose is – what is it benefitting me?” – Oh, they’re giving me approval; I’m feeling a sense of belonging in my family and tribe – and I break this down in the ‘Myth of Rules’. Rules give us benefits, that’s why we go for them, they give us a lot of benefits; they give us convenience and ease; they give us belongingness and connection; they give us safety and approval, but again, what is the cost? And I think, once I started waking up to the cost, I was like “This isn’t working!” It’s like really getting into “Okay, what am I paying when I do this?” And letting yourself enter that and then asking yourself is it worth it?
Yes! I feel like for me it was similar even though there was a subconscious way too of one day realizing that I won’t even have my parents in my life (mortality, right?) but I’m going to have to live with myself forever, so am I going to choose to live with not living my Truth because I’m afraid of what a temporary figure in my life is going to be or myself, who’s the only person, eternal figure in my life, so that was heavy but yeah, I think we all have these certain break-through things that we’re like “Yeah, I need to make a change” and then of course the sticky path to get there. And now you formulate it so well with these 5 different rules, the Girl Rules, that I love them and I resonated with all of them, and I’ll be sharing with the listeners which one was my biggest one (these Myths).
So, can you share with us what are the 5 Good Girl Myths and how they are related to our lives, our relationships, our well-being and all of the things?
So the Good Girl Myths and 5 self-sabotaging, often subconscious, tendencies we picked up as little girls that we’re still operating under in adulthood, and it’s affecting our leadership as women. So that’s what they are, and there are 5 of them.
1 – ‘The Myth of Rules’ is the first one I tackle in the book because it’s the foundation. If we can’t break rules; bend; leverage; question rules – then we’re not going to be able to unlearn other Myths. So let’s start there, that’s the number one.
2 – ‘The Myth of Perfection’ which is my primary Myth – it’s when we’re demanding perfection in ourselves and other people in a way that’s not realistic; and it’s a way that we avoid embracing mistakes. So that’s the big one.
3 – ‘The Myth of Logic’ which is choosing logic over intuition; putting science, and reason, and logic on a pedestal. That’s a really big one for me, that’s my secondary Good Girl Myth.
4 – ‘The Myth of Harmony’ I see in so many of my clients, it’s huge. I actually scored low on this; I’d be curious about you. This is when we’re seeking harmony instead of embracing conflict and confrontation that’s needed for change. And so, this is about using our voice.
5 – ‘The Myth of Sacrifice’ is one of the oldest Myths and it has what I call ‘the thickest roots’ because it’s passed down generationally, particularly through the matrilineal line. And it’s putting other people’s needs above our own, often at the expense of our own well-being. So, that’s where it gets dangerous.
And what I’d like to say about all these qualities and myths is, none of these things are inherently bad – it’s that we’ve swung too much in one direction, we need to come back to center; and it’s also, it’s about allowing ourselves to choose what we want to be in a given context instead of defaulting. So you can choose to be harmonious if you want to be in a context. Don’t just default into it, you can choose to be sacrificing, but don’t just default into it. So it’s about creating more freedom and choice is what I really wanted to make clear in the book.
They’re so good, and I was reading them I was like “Oh, I recognize this in myself, or this in my mom, or this in whatever.” So for me, the largest one I scored in your quiz was The Myth of Sacrifice. I’d love to start with that one and work through all of them; but definitely what you said – generational. You know, in Middle Eastern families a woman sacrifices, that’s actually what her middle name should be (Sahara Sacrifice) and that’s what actually makes you…
Is that really your middle name?
No, imagine!? I’d probably destined for it if it was but it might as well be. Every single Middle Eastern person; South-Asian person – that’s just what it’s taught.
And I remember as a child, my mom being like “We’re going to this party!” I’m like “I don’t want to go to the party!” She’s like “We have to go to the party!” And I’m like “Okay, fine, I’ll go!” ”Why are you dressed like this? Why aren’t you dong your hair? Why don’t you look good? Why don’t you this? Why don’t you that? And then once you’re there – “Stay longer! This, that!” And then if I wasn’t complying to it, I was selfish, I didn’t care about other people (whatever it was). So it’s kind of sculpting you to have no desires for yourself in the less; like the woman that I see in my family – the ones that have basically no needs at all, they’re just completely silent and going with the flow – they’re seen as the best wives and the best mothers.
Oh yeah, they’re praised!
Yes. So let’s talk about this ‘Myth of Sacrifice’ and how it shows up in our lives.
Yes. So for every Myth, I break down what it sounds like, what it looks like, what’s the main strategy for approval, and the powers we give up.
So for the ‘Myth of Sacrifice’ sounds like ‘I should prioritize the needs of others before my own.’ It looks like the tendency to do this often at the expense of your own self-care and well-being.
And what is the main strategy for approval? So, the ‘Myth of Sacrifice’ is very interesting – it’s being selfless; it’s being helpful; but it’s also, for a lot of women, saving the day. You know, if we grew up in families where women were the fixers and they were saving the day. It’s like you can see the women kind of getting off on it, like “Yeah, I’m going to fix this, I’m going to save the day for you! And in that journey, I’m going to be a martyr about it! But that’s okay because it gives me satisfaction to get involved in this was.” And then there’s also that aspect to it, which I think is worth noting.
And the reason I think this Myth is so dangerous (all of them are very dangerous, but this one in particular) is because the powers you give up are your time and energy. And why that’s problematic, because it could seem really small, like you’re giving up one hour here for somebody else; and giving up some extra energy there, on another day – but all of that adds up to your contribution and destiny. Because we know that our daily actions add up to our destiny. And so, if you’re constantly giving up time and energy, even in small pieces, day by day, as your duty as a mother, sister, daughter, etc., you’re going to miss out, potentially, on ever doing your Dharma in this lifetime (it’s probable for a lot of women). Now, for some women, their Dharma is to be fully in that role as Mother; is to be fully in that relational role (and that’s beautiful) but to press on this – Are you really choosing it or are you defaulting into it?
So good! And I completely see; I call it the Savior complex of like “I’m going to save this person who’s having a tough time” and “You can call me or text me whenever you need something” and in a way what are you getting back? You’re getting their attention; you’re getting their approval; and you’re also kind of getting off on the fact that they need you now in this situation. So I think it’s especially in the time when women were so out of power, it was like their only means of a little bit of boost of power they could get of like “Oh, well they really need me emotionally” but then you’re pretty much placing yourself as a crutch and then that person relies on you and then you’re never truly free. So it’s this very, very strange cycle and a hundred percent, I think that even for people who do have that maternal role in their family, it’s hard because then you’re taught that being a good mother is having no emotional boundaries.
So how can, if someone’s listening to this, they have a lot of the Kapha archetype in them – how can they start setting up some emotional boundaries in their lives while also remaining compassionate too? You know, I think we have a hard time with that balance.
Yes. Emotional boundaries is a huge part of what I talk about in the Chapter, because what we’re really talking about is energy leakage. When we don’t have these boundaries, what is happening is we are absorbing other people’s energies and their problems because we’re not learned to distinguish that we aren’t responsible for other people’s problems all the time. There needs to be that separation. Sometimes we’re surely not responsible for other people’s feelings – that we know!
And so, I think, one thing that I do first – let’s just define what an emotional boundary is. So, it’s a boundary between another person’s emotion and our own. And what it serves to do is, it protects our hearts, minds, bodies, souls, in a way to stay with our own truth and self-authority. And so, they are needed to create healthy relationships – if you don’t have emotional boundaries in your relationships, you’re going to have that co-dependency that you just described; you’re going to have these toxic patters play out. And so, when do we need them the most? When someone is coming at you, particularly with a lot of negativity, or sticky, heavy emotions – this is when we need to be particularly alert and put up with our emotional boundaries, even if we deeply love this person; especially if we deeply love them. Our best friend calls us, they just went through a break-up; they’re going through intense grief – how can we hold space for them without absorbing and taking on the grief ourselves; taking on the anger ourselves? And then getting involved in a way that we don’t need to get involved.
It reminds me of, in high school, when there would be drama between two people, and then a girl would get involved to be a counselor and help them, and in a way she just wanted to be in the drama, she wanted to get the attention and feel needed “Oh my God, I need to talk to you, and I need that!” and get that Judge Judy hit.
But you’re living like that and then the other way to see it pan out is – relationships. Finding men who deeply need you, and then they tend to have narcissistic behaviors and that’s why the empathy and the narcissist tend to draw each other until that wound is healed.
Yes and the women with the ‘Myth of Sacrifice’ and ‘Myth of Harmony’ particularly are attracted to narcissists because they, one thing is, for a narcissist is you need to be able to use your voice and stand up for yourself, but their energy leakage that happens (the narcissist will suck your energy; any energy vampire, particularly negative person can actually detect and sense what kind of boundaries you have and will pray on that). And so, I think it’s really important for you, even just within yourself, to you strengthen those boundaries so you don’t even attract those kinds of people into your sphere.
Just to jump around a little bit, with the ‘Myth of Harmony’ – my ex-boyfriend – I got a tattoo that I didn’t want to get, with his initials on it, because I didn’t use my voice. And straight up, he was a narcissist, but particularly because I had harmony and didn’t use my voice, and because I had sacrificed at the time. I kept having this idea that I could save him or fix him, or that one day I could change him; and that’s why good girls often, as stereotypical as it sounds, get paired up with “bad boys” because they want to convert them somehow, and the media feeds that (think about movies like ‘A Walk to Remember’ and so many movies we’ve been fed of “Oh, you’re a pure good girl, go save this lost troublemaker”).
I’m thinking of some Mandy Moore movie, I don’t know what it is.
Yes, because that’s what we remember! Exactly!
Also, it comes from media as well and what we perceive are the gender norms that the scripts that we’re supposed to play out.
So, going back to Emotional Boundaries – it’s how do we care and listen with full attention but also have emotional boundaries? And I think what’s so important in these contexts is mindfulness and coming back to the body. And I know that you do a lot of the embodiment work with dance, and all the spiritual practices you talk about and teach, I think it’s so crucial, that in the moment that you are confronted with someone who’s coming at you with that negativity to plug into your belly, your breath and your feet, in that moment. Just even taking deep belly breaths while that person’s coming at you – because what happens when you’re with someone and you begin to merge with them attentionally – have you ever watched a movie and the heroine cries in the movie and so then you start crying?
That’s because you’re lost in the movie (your attention has actually gone into; your absorption has gone into it) when you come back into your body, you’re actually reeling the energy back towards yourself. That’s what we need to do when we’re confronted with negativity, or energy-vampires, narcissists; anyone who’s going to bring us down, we need to bring the energy back to the self, and not merge.
I think that’s probably why I’ve naturally been drawn into embodiment practices, because that was the Myth that I had been operating from.
And you have a really good affirmation in your book – “I feel, but don’t fix” which I love because especially right now with all of the different causes that are very important and people are talking about. It can feel like, especially for someone who has that Myth of Sacrifice like “I have to be the one who’s going to fix every single world problem” because people are so passionate about it, they might be like “Well then you don’t care about the Environment; well then you don’t care about Human Trafficking; well then you don’t care about this; you don’t care about that.” And I think for someone who really is an empathic, heart-centered person it can feel so overwhelming because you’re scattering all of your energy trying to show people that you care about their Cause too, but then again, you’re not focusing on an actual way that you can create a tangible difference.
I love that you’re bringing this up because I also identified with ‘save the world’ idealist mentality, and I was thinking about that around service – what kinds of service we can do, there’s some service where that’s, I’ll just call it what it is – it could be more Ego-based service where we’re coming from that more ‘save the world/martyr’ mentality; and then there’s service that is aligned with our Dharma and our Purpose.
And so I think, a lot with what you’re saying, you’re right, there’s just an infinite amount of suffering in the World; and Causes from Environmental Degradation to Animal Abuse, to Child Trafficking, to Racism, there’s just such a broad…
So, coming back to what feels most aligned with my Dharma, I think is a real simple question, and I know that’s the work you focus on so much, and I’m so grateful to you for that because I feel like that is going to help cut out a lot of the noise for people.
And I think also just the guilt of having happiness and joy when other people are suffering and thinking “Okay, well once this issue is resolved, then I can be happy” and there’s just an endless amount of pain and suffering in the world, that when are you going to take a chance to celebrate and be happy as things are.
And I remember people – I would read some spiritual books and they’re like “Everything is perfect as it is” and I’m like “No it’s not! How could you say it’s perfect as it is when there’s all of these things” and now as I get older, I just understand because it just is, and there’s that duality and it’s like letting go of even the thought that you’re going to be the one who’s going to fix it and save the day. Because that is coming from ego even though we think it’s coming from selflessness, and I remember growing up, I was like “I want to die being a human shield. I want to be in front of a village in the Congo, or a place on the Gaza strip, and use my physical body (literally to sacrifice) to help potentially save someone!” And of course it’s coming from wanting to help people etc., but here I am, thinking the only way I can be helpful is to literally die to try to help someone else (pure example of this archetype right now).
Yeah! Where do you feel like you got that idea from?
I think I was like “To help, I have to go to the greater extreme, and the greater sacrifice I make, the more I’m helping.”
Do you feel like you got that from any religious story, or spiritual tradition, or familial? Can you trace it back to our media or anything?
I was always very obsessed with Mother Theresa and Gandhi, these ‘save the world’ figures; my parents weren’t religious or spiritual at all, but something in my soul was like “I want to make the biggest impact possible” and then studying all these people I’m like “Okay, they all died for the Cause so the next logical step is in my twenties, I’ll just die for the Cause” – which hasn’t happened yet, hopefully.
We don’t want you to die Sahara, we need you here.
But it’s been funny how these things do manifest in every decision that you want to make and I thought for me to be a noble person is to sacrifice joy and happiness. And I remember I had a cousin who’s very pleasure-focused, she’ll eat the good foods and drink the good wine, and live that life, and I’m like “She’s a narcissist; she’s selfish. How does she not care? When that’s my own ego of being like “Look, I care so much, I’m such a good person.”
Totally! The biggest fear for women with ‘Myth of Sacrifice’ is being called selfish, that’s the worst thing that you can possibly be called.
For someone with the ‘Myth of Logic’ it’s being called Woo-Woo, or that’s the worst of your luck if you call them Woo-woo.
I love Woo-Woo.
That’s why you write your own score high on the ‘Myth of Logic’, I doubt.
So, for the ‘Myth of Perfection’ is being called Messy.
And so we each have our things that we fear. And often with the Myths too, it’s like, I’ve noticed that – I love the example you have of your cousin, because what we ourselves disown, of course, is the thing we will envy or judge in the other person.
So, often, I’ve noticed, women with the ‘Myth of Perfection’ will judge women with the ‘Myth of Harmony.’
And what are the fears?
So, the ‘Myth of Logic’ is to be called Woo-Woo; ‘The Myth of Sacrifice’ is to be called selfish. What are the other ones?
So ‘The Myth of Perfection’ I mentioned, if you were called Messy, that feels like to be seen in your messiness, or to be seen in your imperfection is the deepest fear.
It’s so funny because sometimes I get emails from people like “You have a typo here” and I’m like “Who cares?” I don’t care about a typo at all but I’m like “Why do they feel the need to go so far and send me an email about it, but they probably have that. They’re probably like “Oh shit, Sahara has a typo, she probably doesn’t want to appear messy.” But, yeah, it’s so interesting that one person wouldn’t be hung up over something that could literally draw another person to action.
Yeah. For the ‘Myth of Rules’ the biggest fear is getting in trouble; being bad – particularly getting in trouble with authority; getting caught.
Very like Catholic School girl archetype.
Right! A hundred percent! I think, if you’re listening to this and had a religious upbringing that you’re maybe trying to unwind, you’ve probably had some ‘Myth of Rules’ in there – that’s a big one.
And in the ‘Myth of Harmony’ – I think the biggest fear for women with the ‘Myth of Harmony’ is not being liked and disappointing others – that’s a big one.
Yeah. I think I’m there a 9 – is that one.
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So let’s talk more about the ‘Myth of Harmony’, how does this show up?
Well, the ‘Myth of Harmony’ is very deep. It’s wanting to go along with the flow and avoid being difficult. So, women with this Myth, they seek a lot of Harmony in a way that avoids conflict that’s actually needed for a relationship to mature and grow. And so, the main strategy for approval is getting along; being pleasant; being very likeable. But what do you sacrifice; what do you give up when you are following the ‘Myth of Harmony’ – Voice and Truth. That’s really big, I think that so many women hold back their voices in relationships because they see a tradeoff – like “If I actually speak up and say what I actually think about this to my girlfriend, she’s going to get mad at me;” or “If I actually speak up to my father-in-law I’m going to cause family drama and issues, so I’d better just not say anything.”
How many of us have done that in small and big ways? Like you’re getting a massage and the masseurs is like “If this pressure is too hard let me know” and you’re just like “Oh, I just won’t say anything” you let it slide.
I used to catch myself doing that in pain, I’m like “Why can’t I speak up?” And it’s that!
It’s that! And so, it’s fascinating! And you were seeing it with Movements like ‘Time’sUp’ and ‘MeToo’ where women in large numbers are starting to break this ‘Good Girl Myth’. And it’s almost like when we have the power of numbers, I’m noticing that we’re able to, also, withstand the backlash that happens when we break the ‘Myth of Harmony’ because guess what? – The Patriarchy does not like it when we stand up and use our voices. Are you experiencing that? Because, first of all, y’all have to follow Sahara on Tik Tok, and in general (I’m sure you already do) – but what I love about you is you’re so, very direct, you say exactly what’s in your mind; you’re unfiltered – do you find you get backlash?
I do definitely get backlash but I think this Harmony Myth I had to get rid of a long time ago because it is very perpetual in my family, and like I mentioned before, the people who go along with this Myth are deemed as good people, so I definitely realize that I’m never going to move along with that. But I recently watched the show called “Indian Match-Making”, have you seen it?
Oh my God, I binge-watched the whole thing.
So, I’m like “Wow, look at how much they’re perpetuating this ‘Myth of Harmony’ – the number one thing is the girl has to be flexible; she has to be accommodating. And what does that mean? – No desires; no needs of her own; that she’ll literally fine-tune herself to meet her mother-in-law’s needs, which were never her expectations that she was meant to fulfill in the first place, and because this mother-in-law had to do the same thing for her husband’s family, it’s almost like this ‘I’m going to get you back’ energy.
Totally! Yeah, that’s why the Patriarchy is passed down, not just by men, but by women – mother to daughter, sister to sister – we all spread this culture and these gender norms and this messaging. And often because of what you just described – the ways that we’ve been hurt by it and we feel like we want to give back.
And I think, I read a critique of the “Indian Match-Making” and the director said she felt she was showing, this is the specter of the Indian culture you see. And India, like so much of the world is still very much patriarchal so I wasn’t surprised. And also seeing that I was like “Yeah”, especially that one at the end who got married to a man named Akshe, it was grim, I was watching and I was like “I’m heartbroken for her; God bless you child, God bless you!”
It was so sad because you could just see that neither of them wanted to be there but both of them were so just trying to follow the expectation of their parents and go with the flow, and not stir up the pot and not create controversy that they’re literally giving up their lives.
My grandma was in a forced child-marriage when she was 11 years old, and her husband died (my grandfather died) when she was 27 years old, and she became a widow very young which is seen as you’re garbage, no one loves you. And she changed and became a total bad girl after that, had all these different sexual partners and would go shopping in all these places, and all she would talk about was her anger. She didn’t have the word of the ‘Myth of Harmony’ but her anger at men. And it was that of like “I did everything that I was supposed to and look where I ended up.” And I think that sometimes, not to that extreme, but it happens of you try to go with the flow; you try to make everyone happy, but they’re still not happy that you’ve reached this breaking point of “Screw this! I’m not playing by your rules anymore!”
A hundred percent! I’ve talked to a lot of girls, friends, women, girlfriends, who are like you know – I didn’t really identify as a good girl, and then as I went deeper and talking about their childhood and adolescence, I realized they had that breaking point early. They did not fit in, maybe they were extremely creative and they couldn’t sit still in school, or maybe they had a lot of sexual desire and then they were reprimanded by their parents, that they, early on, were like “Fuck this! I’m going to stick a big middle finger to patriarchy and become “embrace”” – what seems to be the only other option – the bad girl archetype. And so, I talk about this – whether you are assimilating or reacting to something, you’re still being controlled by it to some degree. And so, even if you grew up as a “bad girl” it’s still interesting to see how you have anger towards the patriarchy that needs to be somehow digested or processed in a way for you to heal.
It’s like the independent woman archetype of “I don’t need a man, I don’t need anything, I’m good on my own” but it’s really because you probably have given your trust to someone who has not fully met you and because of that you’re like “No one is trustworthy, I have to do everything on my own” which is also what the patriarchy wants too – for you to now be so like the single mom who works multiple jobs and does everything, and doesn’t need a hand out. No, you deserve support and I think it’s really hard to find that complete healing to integrate with “Yes, I have this need and desire but it’s not perpetuating all of the decisions in my life.”
Totally, a hundred percent!
So let’s talk about the next Myth – ‘The Myth of Logic.’
One of my favorites. ‘The Myth of Logic’ is the Myth that usually comes to us from schooling. So, if you were told that you were smart growing up; if you excelled and got straight A’s; if you had rigorous academic training, you often will develop this Myth of Logic (this is my case).
And we live in a system that really idealizes Western science and medicine, and kind of looks down on, and now it’s gotten better, we’re in 2020, but growing up, particularly it’s like these other modalities are like Woo, and intuition is really something that we don’t need to listen to; art and creativity is a dead-end path, it’s never going to bring you anywhere. So, focus on safe careers; focus on critical thinking; focus on mathematics and stem fields – and what happens is a lot of women start to disconnect from their bodies, they become very cerebral, and it’s great to be smart, it’s great to have that intelligence, but are you tapping into your full intelligence? What about this other reservoir of intelligence that you haven’t even been looking at, or you felt cut off from, or you’ve been neglecting for years? And that intuitive intelligence; the intelligence of the body; the intelligence of feelings; the intelligence of imagination, all of that, what we call feminine intelligence, is been completely cut off.
And so, for ‘The Myth of Logic’ it’s really the journey of reclaiming that intuition because when you are at a crossroads and you have to make crucial life decisions, you want to be able to draw on all the intelligence you have – Your logic and your intuition, and your creativity.
So, really, in this Chapter I break down “Okay, how do we reclaim our feelings? Because that’s a really big first step. How do we reclaim our imagination? Because a lot of us, especially if we’re sensitive, artistic children (as in my case) that was seen as sort of like weird or freakish, or something that was like.. You know, it’s interesting, boys in the patriarchy, if they present any feelings or imagination, they’re extremely ostracized; in fact, they’re told they’re like girls. And even then, girls who present feelings and imagination are then also told that they’re hysterical and not believed by the medical system.
So, if the problem is real, and also just waking up to those problems, of “How do we reclaim and unlearn a lot of the sort of deep, also Western mentality, Western medical and scientific – by the way, I’m not saying we should throw that stuff under the bus, I don’t think it’s like “Let’s just toss it out the window”, I think it’s about integration and not leaving any parts of us behind.
One hundred percent! My dad is entirely this Myth and I remember as a kid, every time I would cry or something, he would say “Be logical, not emotional” and that was like the constant mantra. Logic-good/Emotions-bad! Or whenever I cried he’d be like “I don’t even understand the word you’re saying” so it’s like if you cry no one will listen to you. And I get what he was trying to teach me, but I remember growing up there were the smart successful females were engineers, astronauts, scientists – “Look there’s a woman who created this chemical thing” and it’s almost the way for a woman to be smart is in this more masculine, analytical way. And there was always this desire for more girls and the AP honors in maths and sciences, but if they were in the history or literature, that wasn’t anything special. So, instead of honoring the fact that the feminine and masculine brain is wired a bit differently, it was ‘smartness looks like a masculine version of intelligence.’
Totally agree, and we can see it in how our schools prioritize sciences at the top; arts and humanities at the bottom, all the way to the university level, and then that’s reflected in the work force – highest paid jobs in sciences, medicine, engineering (which is why our immigrant parents pushed us towards those), lowest paying jobs – humanities, arts, education. So, our society values this and it’s natural, it’s not our fault that we would then, in ourselves, if we’re seeking social approval, go along with it and fall for the trap of the ‘Myth of Logic’. And again, what is the cost, what is the price you pay? For so many of us, we’re all artists and we’re truly creative, and we have so much imagination to give, and we kind of repress all of that. And so much of my journey on this path; the heroine’s journey of deconditioning and unlearning has been about reclaiming creativity. And looking at that part of me that’s skeptical; that’s kind of cynical – where did that come from? It’s kind of like rational, very tense, very serious, so I had this really great process where you get to look at your inner skeptic versus your inner artist, and I think for women with the ‘Myth of Logic’ that’s really helpful.
I remember you made a post on Instagram how your realized in yourself that you had created this idea that being a little bit skeptical or darker was like more intelligent or nuanced, and there was very light, bubbly, positive people weren’t as deep. And I think in our minds, because of the movies etc. we’re fed that.
So can you talk a little bit more about this and the decision you made to step into more optimism?
Yes. You’re referring to a positivity experiment I did – I did one week of maximum positivity where I spoke and thought more positive things than negative things. So I tried to get my ratio to be 3:1 (which is what researchers show where resilience is) and I decided to do that because I had this “A-ha!” which is that, exactly as you described – I had associated positive people, I feel embarrassed to say it now, I’ve covered this subconscious belief, but I kind of thought they were dumb, I was like “They look stupid and I should be a little suspicious of them; they want something from me; if you’re too positive and you’re smiling and you’re happy for no reason – what’s wrong with you?” And while I was doing this experiment, as the Universe shows you signs, I went out to Santa Monica with my husband and we were at a parking lot and this little kid was with his dad, and he was laughing, hysterically, and he was laughing about nothing (he must have been 2 or 3 years old) and the dad was saying to him “Why are you laughing, you’ve got nothing to laugh about, what are you laughing for? It doesn’t even laugh for no reason, he’s laughing for no reason.” And I realized the dad was sort of teasing him for laughing for no reason because it’s almost like joy needs a reason, we need to trace back an origin – if you’re feeling just this joy, it’s really kind of uncool, you know! And I think we get messaging early from parents and society that being positive and optimistic is something to be wary of and then later on culture.
I’m Argentinian, so if need listeners that are Argentinian, they might know we come from a culture where we’re complaining and negativity is kind of cool, it’s kind of the way we get along and bond – Argentine culture is wary of positivity, I’ve noticed that. So you layer on, there’s cultural layers, there’s so many things that prevent us, so when I did the experiment it was amazing, I felt to much better, I had so much more energy. I gained back all this energy because I was draining so much energy through mental complaining and verbal complaining, and stuff I didn’t even realize.
So true. You know, I think that we all subconsciously hear this that the smarter person, I don’t know “The Devil Wears Prada” it’s like she’s very serious and that’s why she’s so successful and the new intern is all giddily and smiley because she doesn’t know. I think about the whole New York vs. LA, I grew up in Boston, on the East Coast, and people were always like “You don’t seem like an East Coast person” because I very quickly dropped that hard East Coast shell, but in New York it’s all about being very serious and inwards, and your coffee shop; and LA is very like “Hey, how are you doing?” starting a conversation with people, so New York people are very suspicious about LA people, and LA people feel like New York people are very closed. And then culturally I think Argentine is so influenced by Europe – I remember when I did this study abroad thing in Paris, it was a class on French and American cultural differences, and they were like – the French are like coconuts, from the outside they have this very, very hard shell, but when you move past it they’re so sweet and warm and will actually be lifelong friends with the people they are friends with, whereas Americans are like peaches, on the outside they’re very warm and soft and fuzzy, but they won’t actually let you deep inside.
So I thought, of course, it’s a generalization, but I’m like “That makes so much sense” because in America it’s like – think about alcohol, alcohol causes you to be more social, to go to the party, to talk to every single person. France, Europe, maybe Argentina, it’s more cigarettes – cigarettes causes you to be in the dark corner with someone in this very, very deep conversation and that’s what considered cool in the respective cultures.
Totally! It’s so fascinating to talk about cross-cultural patterns with this stuff because I think, one of my main arguments in the whole book is that culture affects our beliefs and who we are, and it’s so important to look at, particularly, the cultures we grow up in and we’re born into, and the specific set of rules and messages and norms that they have handed us.
And it’s going to be interesting with so many young kids spending this year in quarantine and whatever the world is going to look like after, so we’re not even getting those same cultural nuances because we’re not really seeing people anymore – just on the internet which is not anyone’s true self – how that’s going to shift the generation Z, generation after that’s belief systems, nuances, etc.
I know, it’s so fascinating.
So, let’s talk about ‘The Myth of Perfection.’
Oy-ye-ye my fav! This is like my deepest Myth; it’s my primary Good Girl Myth. So in the book, you can take the assessment in Chapter 3 and find out which is your primary.
‘The Myth of Perfection’ I start off talking about how being an immigrant, I started to lose my native language when I was really young and I felt a lot of embarrassment and shame around it. And, I think a lot of daughters of immigrants might relate, one of the reasons I refused to speak Spanish with my parents was because I stopped being good at it. And at that point, I think by the time I was 5 or 6, I had sort of developed this idea of myself as smart and good at things, and if I wasn’t great at something right off the bat, I sort of quit or I wasn’t interested in it. And that’s because I developed something called ‘Fixed Mindset’ and anyone who is sort of patted on their head as a little girl and told they were special and talented or gifted, will develop a Fixed Mindset which is a belief that traits are fixed instead of can growth through practice. It’s almost like I didn’t want to put in the practice of trying to make my Spanish better, and plus I wanted to assimilate with what was considered higher culture – at that time I was living in Canada so it was assimilating with Canadian culture and English speaking culture. And so, I regret it but I started to lose my language and I give that example because it’s like, when we’re following ‘The Myth of Perfection’, there is so much that we can lose, and for each of us it is specific. We all have a story of something that we gave up on because we wanted to be perfect and what are we avoiding when we’re trying to be perfect? We’re really avoiding vulnerability; we’re avoiding just looking stupid or we’re avoiding that making mistakes and therefore, we don’t take risks.
And I spend a big chunk of this Chapter talking about creating confidence and my work in design thinking, and one of my favorite antidotes to ‘The Myth of Perfection’ is actually prototyping. Particularly thinking about how we can take ideas that we have and make dinky versions of them that we’re not precious about, that we can experiment with them. And this is a very ‘design thinking mindset’, it’s also very entrepreneurial. And I think that women who are gripped by perfection can really learn a thing or two from designers around how they prototype; and are scrappy and purposefully imperfect in a way that sort of gain forward momentum and get un-stuck.
So what would that look like for example, maybe someone wants to write a book, they write a very of messy first draft; or create a very sample product with their own homemade label on it?
Exactly! So, if you wanted to write a book, there’s two ways you can go about it. One way could be like “Okay, I’m going to go and try to get a book deal and before I even develop my concept or idea, and try to get an agent and go through the process and spend three years on it, working on it in my little cave and then come out about it. Or, in the early stages particularly, I can test this idea or this concept and see whether the people resonate.
And so, one of the things that I talk about is this key idea and design thinking around embracing constraints. So, if I told you, for example, say we want to do an experiment – you want to write a book? Okay! So, imagine I gave you some crayons and a few pieces of paper and I said “Write the book in 10 minutes.” I like “Oh, you’ve given me a constraint of 10 minutes.” Suddenly I have to bypass my overthinking and I have to just make some messy; quick thing, I’ll fold the paper, I’ll write a title, I’ll put Chapter 1, I’ll put Chapter 2, I’ll make a little flow, I’ll make a drawing, and I’ve made a prototype in 10 minutes of a book; and say “What’s the point of that? Why do I want to do that?” Well, a) you’ve moved into action, other than what? – instead of staying stuck and quiet? You have something to show someone to start a conversation and get feedback if you want (of course caveating to them “This is just a prototype, I’m just experimenting”). And so you’ve already taken more steps towards it than sort of like building it up in your mind, and raising the bar really high in a way that’s got you in paralysis or procrastinating.
And I feel like that’s what happens to most people, they’re just like – I remember the first book that I wrote that I didn’t have a book deal for, I thought I would just write it – well I was just writing for 2 years and I still did not know what to even put in it or what not to and I was just so in this constant process “It’s not ready, it’s not ready, it’s not ready” and then finally when I did get a book deal I had 2 months to write a book, well guess what? – Somehow in 2 months I got a book done because of that deadline. So I do think deadlines so needed for kind of any big project because then the perfectionist in all of is going to keep finding things that are wrong with it.
Deadlines invite us to be brave, that’s what I like to say. They do, they are invitations for complete bravery, because now you only have a week to write it; you only have 3 weeks to write it; and you will write it; you will. Will you write it perfectly? No! But you’ll write and you’ll get it done, and then you can iterate and refine it. So I’m big into iteration and refinement instead of sinking in a lot of time into something – sink in a little time and iterate on it and then prove it.
So, with this book, a lot of people don’t believe that this book is 273 pages, it started out as a 1-pager that I showed a few clients, and on the 1-pager it was a visual 1-pager, it had the synopsis of the book, comparative titles, it had a little diagram, it had a potential book title, and I just showed this 1-pager and got feedback. Then I actually, when I was doing the book proposal, I folded up paper and I laid out the book the way I described, with crayons, taking it to a second prototype, to a second level of resolution. This is just my process, everyone’s different, but what I’m trying to share is that with that design thinking process, you kind of start to de-risk the idea and you start to actually see “Do I have something here that’s worth sinking in a lot of time in, worth pursuing?”
And it’s a smarter use of your time because the way I did it was like “Oh, I’ll just write the book I guess” no bouncing the idea, and look, it’s like a 2 year-long process that I’m grateful for and it’s whatever my journey needed it to be, but it was not the most efficient with my time for sure.
So, it’s interesting. I think ‘The Myth of Perfection’ for me, early on I learned that I progress by just ‘take action and get the feedback, and take the action again’ which is eventually leading you to that perfect thing, but maybe because I was a blogger that it was like every single day I would just write a blog post that I realized that (this was over 10 years ago) but the biggest bloggers out there, they were just very consistent, so I would be like “Okay, let me just keep churning things and bringing things out” versus some people I know will spend like a month on this perfect blog post and then they’re so scared by the experience, it’ll be another 6 months before they write the next one.
Yeah, you’re describing another constraint which is quantity. So, if you are doing more of something and consistently, and in quicker timeframes, yeah, you’re less precious about it, and guess what – you’re going to get better at it too than if you’re spending a lot of time being ridged and perfecting this one thing and trying to get it – and that creates more attachment too. Like, when you’re blogging every day, you’re like “I have another one tomorrow.”
Right, just getting it out there, and I think that’s what social media etc. are helping people get good at, of like, “Let me just keep churning my ideas out because I’m going to have a new one tomorrow.” And I think that writing something like a book, like we know, you probably wrote the majority of this book last year because there’s so much time between the book being done and it actually coming to print. And in this year, I’m sure you now read the book and you’re like “Ah, I would’ve added this, I would change that, I would’ve done this differently.”
Already with my book, even though I’m still in the end of the editing process, it’s like you can’t really change that much at this point. So I think any time you write a book just accept the fact that you’re going to lean and you’re going to grow, and guess what – all of the new ideas that you’ve been cultivating over the past year in promoting this book can be in your next book.
Exactly! For me, writing this book has been about letting go of my own ‘Good Girl Myth of Perfection’ and to embrace the fact that’s evolving, and it’s in process, and it’s never going to be perfect. You can take any book off any book shelf in a library and you can edit it. And then someone can edit your edits, and it can go on forever.
It can never end, exactly. Eventually you just realize that it is enough; it’s good as it is; keep the ball rolling!
Yeah, and that’s how we’re going to start to share our voices, because I think if we grew up as good girls, with a fixed mindset, that’s where we’re stuck. Our creative confidence is lower and we need to bolster it by taking action, prototyping, not being precious, just getting it out there.
One hundred percent!
Now let’s talk about the last myth – ‘The Myth of Rules’ which you touched upon a bit, but just for people who might still really have this one – let’s dive in.
‘The Myth of Rules’ is the one I start off with because it really does lay down the foundation. And this is when you’re going along with other people’s expectations instead of trusting your own desires, needs and opinions. The powers you need to reclaim for ‘The Myth of Rules’ is Purpose and Self-Authority, but particularly Purpose. So a lot of the – in ‘The Myth of Rules’ I point people to get access to death meditation – why? Because death is a great clarifier and can help us understand our Purpose. So when we know that we’re going to die, suddenly it’s like “Wow, let me really prioritize what really matters to me right now; I don’t have time to waste!” We’re under the illusion that maybe we’ll live forever, but death can take us tomorrow; but if we really step into that it could, then we can really sink into our purpose.
And so, redefining success for ourselves above and beyond expectations and rules – that’s the process with that. And one of the tools is looking at death, but I have a few others in there. Definitely going through the check list of all the rules we’ve inherited – whenever I hear a client use the word ‘should’ I’m like “Hmmm…Myth of Rules!” “I should be trying to get a promotion; I should be trying for kids right now; I should be losing weight; I should be..” I’m like “Wait a second! This is coming from somewhere; this isn’t coming from your deepest, most authentic self.” And so, I think really looking at how we have internalized rules from schools, family, religions and pop culture – so we can start to unwind all of that.
I’ve been thinking a lot about this phenomenon of the Karen. We’re always talking about the Karen who is this white, baby-boomer woman who is obsessed with rules; she’s obsessed with “Things are supposed to be like that; you’re breaking this rule; are you supposed to be here?” And I’m like “Where did she come from?” and she got her safety growing up in life by following the rules that her only sense of purpose is to make sure other people are following the rules despite any nuances. For example, I was on TikTok today and there was this girl literally calling this woman, calling ICE, the immigrant detention center, on this homeless person because she looked like she was an illegal immigrant and she had to do the right thing and make sure that they checked if she was an illegal immigrant or not. And here she was thinking she was doing something so righteous and the person on TikTok was like “Do you realize she is there with her little daughter, she’s not bothering you, mind your own business” but this woman was like “No, she’s not following the rules, I don’t know if she has papers and I’m not going to leave until they check if she has papers.”
Yeah, what you’re describing is like a policing mentality. And so a lot of people, women particularly, if they were highly policed as little girls, they will police other people, and they have a little inner police telling them all the time what they can and can’t do. And that’s why they feel so righteous because they (by the way I’m saying they, but I also have ‘The Myth of Rules’ within me. So it’s in within me so I notice that I can get righteous about it – because as a little girl I was very much a rule follower and if I played a game where the boys didn’t follow the rules, I would get super-angry; I would feel such a sense of injustice and righteousness, and I would have to go to the teacher and tell them – I was the tattle-tale). And I think you’re right, I think it’s really dangerous because we’re getting into that – is coming from a place of rigidity and also wanting to level the playing field, but it’s not actually coming from a place of care.
It’s very much, I had to follow the rules so you should too instead of why are they there in the first place.
Yeah it is. I mean, now, it’s interesting; we’ve all noticed it so much across the years that we’ve given it this name, I feel so sad for anyone named Karen right now. But the fact that we’re all like “Oh, I know exactly what it is” shows that we’ve all had the librarians at schools that are like “Do not talk; do not do this; do not do that” and it’s like “You’re stopping children from giggling. But you’ve got to follow the rule!” And they’re taught that that’s what it means to be a good teacher, a good support system, whatever it is.
Yeah and I think that strictness does come from what you identified as the need to feel safe. Like if we don’t feel safe within our own bodies, we don’t feel safe in our own world, we become more strict, more controlling, more constricted, more policing.
And what I see happening too is, especially, a lot of my friends went to catholic school growing up, and now they’re in this place of really exploring their sexuality and having so much shame around it because they’ve been taught that their body is sinful, their desire is sinful, if they’re not a virgin no one is going to love them, and because of that they flipped to not honoring their bodies for a period of time in their lives, from complete strictness to complete wild girl, and now finding that balance between the two.
I love that! Yeah, I think sometimes we have to go to the far reaches to come back to center and integrate. Which, at the end of the book, I give the integrated quality of each of these ‘Good Girl Myths’ how every good girl myth has a shadow side, but has a light side that we can explore, that I think is like the gem of the Myth. Sacrificing is a really beautiful thing because it involves future visioning. Someone who is, like you, it’s like, if you can understand sacrifice, you understand what it means to sacrifice today for something more beautiful tomorrow is how we’re going to build a better future. So, I think that’s the integrated quality of it.
That’s so true because I was obsessed with the future growing up, I made a future club and just talk about what’s going to happen in the future, so that’s probably the Light side of that Myth.
And what are some of the Light qualities of some of the other ones?
Sure, so let me flip to it here.
– So, for Rules, is learning and creativity – that’s the strength for Rules because I feel like people who understand rules are able to learn quickly and are able to be resilient in new environments because they can quickly observe “Okay, what are the rules of this environment?” And also, great creativity, ironically, involves constraints and rules.
I had an Art teacher in college, I went to Community College, at one point I went to Community College to take some extra classes (I’m such an achiever) and the Art teacher was watching me draw and I way saying “Oh” and she was like “Some of my best students have been Engineers” and I thought that was so fascinating because they understand structure; and for great drawing there needs to be a little bit of structure. And so I think there is that nuance there.
– For Perfection, I mean, Excellence, I think that’s the beautiful quality. Think about incredible Japanese craftsmen – Quality and Excellence, I think when that attribute is well-integrated.
– Logic is Investigation and Discovery (which is why it’s great for science).
– Harmony is – I have one good sister of mine, girlfriend, who is very high in the ‘Myth of Harmony’, and she is just the best at nurturing relationships. For me, she’s so wealthy because it’s not about the money she has in her bank, it’s about the community and relationships that she has given so much of her time to, and that feeds her back. And so I think that that’s big, and she’s truly a wonderful peacekeeper; when it’s integrated she really is able to keep the peace in a way that she creates these really beautiful harmonious environments, tea ceremonies where you just enter and suddenly all your problems dissolve and you feel so at peace. I think it’s that feminine quality that she has well-integrated. As long as she’s avoiding conflict, I’m all for it.
– Sacrifice is Future visioning and Generosity. I think that people who have ‘The Myth of Sacrifice’ are extremely generous, and we need generous people in the world, there’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a beautiful quality as long as they’re taking care of themselves.
I love it. So instead of beating yourself up this whole Podcast “I have this Myth” there’s Light to all of it, that’s where it is.
There’s a catch.
This is such an amazing book to dive deeper into and you offer incredible practices for each Myth and so much more.
And where can listeners get it and connect with you?
Sure, so you can buy the book at goodgirlmyth.com and you can connect with me on Instagram @majomolfino, my name Majo and you should find me.
Great and I’ll have that link in the show notes. Thank you so much for coming on and sharing these beautiful Myths and realizations with all of us, it’s so beneficial and I’m sure every single listener found themselves in some or a couple of these different archetypes.
Thank you Sahara, thanks for having me.
[1:18:10] End of Interview:
How beautiful was that conversation! I so, deeply love just sitting down with her, like girlfriends, talking about all this stuff because as women, we, in 2020, we are facing so much, so many expectations of how we’re supposed to be; how we’re supposed to show up in the world, and we’ve never really seen examples of anyone living this way before. We’ve kind of realized that that feminist era sort of went very hard in one direction, but then we also don’t want to be 1950s housewives, and we want to be spiritual but we want to be smart and entrepreneurial, and it’s like all of these different archetypes that we’re really working to bring together. And that’s why for me, the Goddess archetype is that, she is fierce and powerful and strong like the warrior Durga, Athena; but she’s also loving, she’s a Mother, she’s Aphrodite; she’s Lalita Sundari; the sensual Goddess; she’s creative – Saraswati; she’s abundant – Lakshmi; she’s all of the things.
So, really reclaiming your Goddess nature, that “Yes! I am loud and I am subtle; I am intelligent and I am soft; I am everything, I don’t have to categorize myself” that really helps us naturally dissolve these Myths so we can step into our full sovereignty.
So, come join us in Rose Gold Goddesses where we are exactly doing that work. Every single month we work with a new Goddess archetype.
This month we are working with the energy of Lemuria, which is the Ancient Civilization based all about Bliss, Love, Expression, Joy, the Heart, the Mermaids, the Dolphins.
We have worked with Isis, Sekhmet, Bridget, Quan Yin, Durga, Saraswati, Lakshmi, Lalita Sundari, so many Goddesses, and we are going to continue to be working with these different archetypes every single month so we can tap deeper and deeper into our Truth.
So, if this is resonating with you and you want to dive deeper, head over to rosegoldgoddesses.com, that is rosegoldgoddesses.com (plural) the link is in the show notes and you’ll find all the information to join our Community of 2000+ Spiritual Soul Sisters all around the world, and we do all this work alongside a Community that one hundred percent has your back.
If you loved this episode, I would love to send you a free gift which is the first half of my unreleased book “Eat Right for Your Mind Body Type“. This is a different book than “Eat Feel Fresh“. My first book ever which is not released anywhere, and I am gifting it exclusively to those who leave a review of my Podcast in the iTunes store. So all you’ve got to do is head over to iTunes where you’re maybe listening to this podcast and leave a review, take a screenshot that you’ve left it and email it over to me at [email protected] and I will send you back the first half of my unreleased book “Eat Right for Your Mind Body Type“, which goes all into Ayurveda, Doshas, Plant-Based Nutrition, Body Types – all of the things in a really fun and engaging way. So this is my gift to you for free for supporting the Podcast. Every single review I personally read. It really helps the Podcast be listened to by more people so we can raise the vibration of the planet together, and I am soul grateful to have you on this journey.
Thank you so much for listening and I’ll see you on the next episode. Namaste.
Episode 310: Breaking the Good Girl Myth with Majo Molfino
By Sahara Rose