If the angels could have sat you down for a chat when you were on the way in to this life (among some other comments about love, fear, and your glory), they might have said this:
“Now, my dear, a little context: you are entering into a transitional time.
The past: A world led, designed and defined by men.
The future: A world led, designed and defined by women and men.
The present: The transition. Yes, we’ve put you on the transition team.
What’s so tricky to understand, dear one, is that as a woman of this transitional time, what is inside of you will be very different from what is outside of you. What you have to bring into the world will be very different from what you see before you as the status quo of the world. Yet what you have to bring forth is not crazy or wrong. In fact, it’s just what the world needs.
It’s as if the world is all purple and you — and your sisters — are going to bring in the yellow. Or as if it’s blue and you are going to bring in the red.
That means that whether you signed up for it or not, you will be a revolutionary. You will be a revolutionary whether you love that idea or whether you’d prefer to just do your thing quietly – to be a teacher, a nurse, a doctor, a businesswoman, an artist, a mom, a grandmother, a volunteer, an entrepreneur.
You will be a revolutionary because any woman who is being authentic in her work will bring forth ideas and ways of working that run counter to the status quo of her company, industry, community – a status quo defined by masculine values and masculine ways of working.
The angels might have added this: “So if you ever start to doubt or hold back or silence yourself because the questions you have, the ideas in your mind, or the way you work are so different from the status quo, remember that difference is exactly what is meant to be. You are here to bring forth a different way.”
It’s the hard – and thrilling – work you get to do this time around. It’s the “women’s work” of our particular moment in history.
You don’t have do the whole work, but you are asked to do the slice of that work that has been given to you.
Now, before you exclaim that you just don’t know what that slice is, or panic because you don’t have time or bandwidth for anything extra, let’s remember: this isn’t work that takes additional time. This is work about how you live each moment of your life.
And this isn’t work you have to go find or discover. It’s the work that is right in front of you, in the ways you feel called to speak, to act, to reinvent, to heal – in the imperfect, messy situations you find yourself in right now. Your piece of the work is already whispering to you – if not talking to you loudly yet. It’s the ideas in your mind and heart right now.
You are only asked to not stop up those things in you that most want to be expressed. If you let them flow forth, you will have done your revolutionary work, and you will have done it beautifully.
You don’t need to do it alone, though sometimes you might feel like you are alone. You walk on this path with a world of women who are surviving on the rocky ground of this world while also changing it to a richer, healthier soil. If you look for it, you will start to see all around you this shared path of the women in your midst, each working to bring forth a different way to some aspect of the world.
Know this: you are blessed in this work. Every step of the path you walk in this work has been blessed and blessed and blessed again before you traverse it. The angels are giddy, for they love love, and they can see the world that you are enabling to come into being.
Photo credit: Annie Spratt
Join the discussion 40 Comments
Oh, my God. How beautiful these words and how joyful my heart to have found this community of women. Tara, keep leading us and encouraging us. Many elements are coming together for me in a much bigger vision than I had originally thought. Thank you.
This piece really speaks to me…
Your writing seems to be guided from a higher place–it’s so heartfelt and pure. Thanks for doing your revolutionary work.
This is EXACTLY my experience, dear Tara, the path I’m on ‘makes no sense’ and yet, there’s no other way, for me. At times lonely, at times exhilarating, as if I’m Indiana Jones looking for the new grail.
Thanks for expressing the truth about our times so eloquently… hail to the brave hearts who heed the call within and forge new ways, small and large, visible and invisible, in this transitory time.
Lots of love xoxo
Oh Tara…How deeply and profoundly this speaks to me. My work involves military and emergency response. With each step forward, I am committed to injecting compassion, peace and technologies that are life-enhancing over life-extinguishing.
I got all tingly reading this one … and in the middle of this I pulled down a card I have perched on my desk so I could meditate on it more often – like all the time. It goes ….
Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what you love. Because when you do DO what you love … the world will NEED IT …
This is the message that resonates with me, not the ‘money will follow’ … something way deeper …. The world NEEDS what we love!
Thank you for my morning tingly! Love!
Stunning!!! Thank you Tara. This is most certainly the work, this very moment right here. Someone said to me recently, ‘I don’t know what you ‘do’, it’s who you are that I remember.’ You reflect my own feelings, my own guidance, in this piece. So it is. Love, sister.
Tara, I completely believe in the Collective Conscious. And I believe we are all psychic – to varying degrees, depending on how much or little we choose to communicate with the Uni-verse. Your “Revolutionary” writing tells me that you are so clearly tapped into the Divine – thank you for being the voice and encouraging us to stay the course amidst any and all resistance. I definitely feel, bursting up inside of me, the intense energy longing to express a new way of looking at life. Your writing validates that energy coming through me. And reminds me that I am just one piece of this great puzzle, so simply attend to my one piece as joyfully as possible. Here with you, Sistas! ~Linda
Shared this with my community of fellow revolutionaries. It should be required reading for all young women in high school and beyond. Beautifully put, Tara.
When I clicked to open the email to reveal your post and scrolling down to read it, I jumped over to another page, like a faerie, running to hide behind another tree and then I came back and read the rest, having caught myself being caught by you!!!
Oh the things those angels told me coming here…….I knew when wrestling with my father and his dictates until he died feb. 2012, that I knew I was here to fight the patriarchy, to raise my arm and open my heart to see it wane in its stranglehold on woman kind and die an unsustainable death to be transformed into balanced male/female respect and authentic expression. It’s now that he is gone, and grieved and my spine is unwinding speedier from the twisted way it had to grow to survive, that I face taking that vulnerable self out there and my newly arrived at ‘feeling safe in the world’ sense and offering again what I’ve tried to get going before, but now with the Playing Big sisters behind me!! I don’t feel it as a fight as I did before, I survived !!….now it’s about blossoming, softening, loving, gratitude and sharing…Thank you Courage Angel Tara ~
Brilliant. Perfect. Aho!
This is exactly the truth, the beautiful truth that we all need to hear and so glad you are channelling it through for all us to remember again and again! Thank you Tara!
Wow. The timing of this is amazing. I really needed to hear this, Tara. Thank you for your leadership and visioning. It’s like water to me as I walk my way in this world. Namaste.
Amazing. just what i needed to hear today. thank you
What is VERY sad is how long the Transition Team has been at it. I, and my compatriot sisters of the late 1960s, were the just another manifestation of the Transition Team. I won’t even claim that we were the original group of women fighting for our rights to be ourselves. I was at Yale when there were only 567 women students in the entire university. I’ve been a minister for 47 years, non-stop. So keep on keeping on, sisters. Sisterhood is powerful.
This post is an amazing reminder that we need to begin pursuing what it is we’re called to do. Currently, I’m in Malaysia at the Women Deliver conference and I am seeing prime examples of revolutionary women that are living and breathing their passions everyday. It’s quite a sight to see. It’s absolutely imperative that women follow their calling because not only will lead to a more fulfilling life but the world benefits from it tremendously. Thank you for post and your encouraging words.
This was a very, very wonderful post. Originally I had hoped to contribute to the Grandmother Power blog campaign, but when I began to write about my Granny as a revolutionary–and transitional–character, who didn’t fit into any kind of nice grandmother mold, yet who lived an authentic truth and taught a lesson through the pain, frustration, and sheer bitchiness that entailed. She made us suffer, my mom and I, and we did the same to her. But we weren’t on the side of the devils, it’s the truth the devil can’t bear.
So I love what you’re saying,in the kind nurturing way I can’t, and I want to mention a wonderful idea expressed by Virginia Woolf in A Room of One’s Own. We have a sacred duty to do our best work–our best life–not because we may be the Female Shakespeare–we won’t be, not yet for sure–but because without our work, the path will not open for the Female Shakespeare to come.
Thank you Tara, there must be some Guardian Angels of Anger and Angels of Anarchy in that heaven of goodness,love, and truth, watching over the curmudgeons like my Granny and me. Bless you for your loving words…
Tara, I read your post this morning and was moved to respond immediately – I couldn’t, but now look, 12 hours later, at all the comments…you touch so many. Your words are a timely relief for all of us – thank you for being the brave and beautiful. x
Superb. In all truth, this is EXACTLY the encouragement that I needed. I’ve been so frustrated, jumping from gig to gig, trying out one 1099 job after another, and still just not finding focus. I really tried, but the need to have resources to fuel my own energy made me feel pressured and angry and downright frustrated with those who were in a sense dangling a carrot in front me. I have so much to think about as it relates to what I both want and need to do. I know what those things are. I want them to be, and I don’t want to kill myself in order to live because when the time comes I will be a burnt out version of myself giving to my true passion only 50% of what I could…
A reluctant revolutionary, I am. I feel so tested, sometimes I can’t stand it! I chose a traditionally male career to which none of my male colleagues are in any doubt of my femine signature, and to which I was perfectly matched. And further tested, being the sister of a recently OUT bio brother transgender ‘sister’ who was the oldest male with all that goes with it, and a Marine, a father/grandfather. Now my relationship with feminity, and what it means, is much more clear and I’m tremendously conscious of how it is changing society, indeed the world.
Thank you Danielle. You are so welcome here.
That’s just my intention – thank you.
Selena – wow, I love hearing about the diverse kinds of work readers here do, and how we bring a shared sensibility to those very different realms. Thanks for being here.
So beautifully said Linda. It’s an honor to get to reflect that which is arising in women like you. lots of love – Tara
You are so welcome Mijanou!
Sooo beautiful!!! You are speaking to my heart! Thank you for sharing yourself with all of us!
Beautiful and true words.
What you wrote inspired me to have enough courage to blog about something that has been burning into me over for the last few days.
Thank you for being a strong empowered voice for women. Your voice encourages my voice.
Several years ago I wrote a poem called Revolutionary Love that I believe flows from the same place as this post.
TARA, OH. This is so so so what I needed. This may be my most favorite blog post I’ve ever read. It is inspiring me to take big gulps of air and press on with my own women’s work – that is leading me to teach women how to own leadership and voice and shalom-steeped ambition.
I can’t thank you enough. This is amazing.
Tara, those words are filled with so much heart an cleverness my eyes teared up!
How many times have I not felt awkward, and opposing – and now I know why.
Thank you. I will continue to color my world!
Thank you so much, Tara. Beautiful and inspiring beyond words. Brilliant, indeed.
Thank you Tara, I understand so much better what my piece of the puzzle is when I see the whole picture first! As a woman, mother and nurse, I really relate to Michael Jackson’s words – “heal the world, make it a better place …” and your blog today has re-energised me to keep doing that work. And to keep creating ways to do it better. Kia kaha (stand strong), sisters of the world. (from New Zealand)
James Brown put it like this,” It’s a man’s world… but what would it be without a woman or a girl?” How encouraging and precious are your words to us. They bring strength, deliverance and healing. They are the words that put this daily life into a perspective that makes one want to keep on keeping on.
thank you SO much for putting this into words.
i feel very strongly about this and think about it all the time. i’m going to share it with some of my girlfriends.
Your words here, and then in your Playing Bigger program about dealing with not being liked reminded me of this quote from Benjamin Smythe:
“Since energy is in motion, the positive and negative “lessons” are already underway. It is absurd to think I really teach anything or that I only teach positively. There are people who encounter what I share and say, “Fuck this guy. He’s retarded,” and in that moment, they learn what they do NOT want. We are all a positive and negative teacher to each other. It’s just whether or not we want to admit people are going to learn from us whether they like us or not. That’s reality. ”
Quite resonant for me. I take comfort that people will learn from me… by learning what they DON’T like about what I teach… that’s perfect too! This is a breakthrough for someone who definitely would prefer that people like me :-)!
Tara, this is inspired and right on the mark. It resonates deeply for me, in my core. THANK YOU, for being here, for speaking. Love always.
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