It’s become common advice to advise women to avoid using exclamation points in professional emails: Delete them to be taken more seriously in the workplace. But does removing them—to appear less feminine, to be taken seriously—further emphasize the falsehood that femininity inherently stands in our way?
The pressure to micromanage femininity doesn’t start or end with punctuation. And it can leave us physically, emotionally, and spiritually drained, according to holistic healer Rachel Rossitto (above). Rossitto believes that while masculine and feminine energies are both sacred, many of us struggle to find balance between the two in a world biased toward masculine qualities and pursuits. That’s why Rossitto works with women, many of them leaders in business and in their communities, looking to heal and recultivate what she calls the sacred feminine. It’s deeply spiritual work that challenges how we think about pleasure, joy, and success—and questions whether power must always look like masculinity.
A Q&A with Rachel Rossitto
What are sacred feminine and masculine energies? How do they exist in nature?
Humans have long and deep relationships with femininity and masculinity, but those qualities don’t start or end with us. They exist together in us and in all things.
The sacred feminine energy is nurturing, soft, grounded with strong boundaries, and trusting of her intuition. The sacred masculine energy is present, logical, and focused with a deep desire to protect and build. When these two energies work together within us, they create a sweet union that allows us to embrace all that makes us human and holy.
Why is the sacred feminine so important to connect to?
For women, embracing the sacred feminine is about fully realizing her divine essence, standing in all her power, and creating a more harmonious world. This doesn’t mean we are operating only from our feminine energy. It’s about understanding our full range of power as both feminine and masculine beings and cultivating that energy when needed.
In so many of my clients, I see masculine energy in overdrive: Many women feel pressure to be and talk and act masculine in order to succeed in their careers and in the world. I work to help those women recognize and embrace their innate feminine energy. They may be CEOs in a world that rewards masculine qualities, but that doesn’t mean they can’t embrace and find power in their feminine ones. A woman who sources her creativity and energy from taking exquisite care of herself is more powerful than one who pushes so hard that she exhausts herself and is no longer experiencing joy and pleasure.
Of course, men can and should connect with their inner feminine, and women can and should connect with their inner masculine. These sacred energies are beyond gender, though. Everyone—all genders—can find balance with both.
Where do you start?
Cultivate a morning ritual to engage with your intuition, whatever that means to you. Keep it simple and allow it to unfold naturally over time. A key element is the ability to be receptive. Take a moment in the morning to ground and connect with yourself, to enter into a receptive state where you get to listen to your heart and all the wisdom of nature around you. You get in front of your day, actively engaged with what’s aligned with your highest self and highest vision.
I find that by starting your day from that place, you cut a lot of the crap out. You can do less running around like a chicken with its head cut off and instead move through the world more deliberately, more intentionally, and more resourced from within.
How can we design a morning practice to cultivate feminine energy?
There are truly a million paths to the same outcome. Here are some pieces that have worked for me.
Cultivate a sacred space. Find a place in your home where you can set a meditation pillow and create a little altar, even if that’s just a candle, a crystal, or a flower. Something super simple. I’m constantly on the road, so I have a little travel alter kit that I bring with me that immediately grounds me into a space.
Experiment with practices and techniques. Journaling is powerful. Just do a big brain dump. Get all of your ideas and fears and crazy thoughts out of your mind and onto paper. Let yourself feel emptied out.
I sit with a cup of tea for twenty minutes. Tea is an incredible ally for awakening the spirit, grounding the body, and coming home to yourself. Drinking some tea helps soften us and opens us up to the day.
Meditation and breathwork can be life-changing. If you’re just starting out, start small. It could be five or ten minutes a day. If you’re like, “I’m going to meditate for thirty minutes every single day for three months,” you’ll likely go a couple of days and then fall off. You’ll be like, “That was stupid. I don’t like meditation. Breathwork doesn’t work.” You’ll lose momentum and end up pooh-poohing it. And then you’ve lost a treasure.