Committing to Self-Focus (Secret No. 5)

This week as part of our highly creative bloggers Next Chapter Book Club we are taking a look at: putting yourself on top of the priority list, honoring your holistic style, setting boundaries, creating solitude and supporting self-focus in other women.

Selfishness (a definition): "concern with one's own interests."

"There is never enough time and that's the rub. In my case every choice I make means depriving someone." May Sarton, Writer.

CHALLENGE #1 What did you learn about being selfish as a child? What did your mother teach you about your role(s) as a woman?

I was raised in an intellectual sort of household, both my parents were teachers and my mom especially, encouraged and supported me in pursuit of all my hopes and dreams and for that I am very grateful. I spent most of my childhood reading, writing, making art and crafts, in the woods, at the lake, and playing music.

I was taught by my Jewish mother that being a woman meant I should be perfectly capable of supporting myself so that I would never have to rely on anyone else. This would require a university degree or two along with lots of hard work and study.

The issue I am having now, is making more money and learning to value myself by overcoming underearning. I am working with Barbara Stanny's book to facilitate this process.

BREAKING THROUGH YOUR EARNING BARRIERS From the book, "Overcoming Underearning" by Barbara Stanny

"High earners think differently, they make different choices and as a result produce very different outcomes. It's not just going through the steps. It's having a paradigm shift in your head. Virtually every six-figure woman I interviewed swore money was not her primary motivation. But at the same time she fully expected to be well compensated because she knew she was worth it.

Our unwillingness to respect our needs, to give priority to our dreams, because it feels selfish and wrong, explains why so many continue to underearn.

The number one requirement for financial success (or success in anything for that matter) is this: You've got to be willing to be uncomfortable." Or as Eastern wisdom advocates, "Embrace what does not come naturally. Only then will you stop limiting yourself." (I'm not so sure I agree with this last statement, it seems to go against another theory I work with that involves focusing on your strengths, not your weaknesses - thoughts, anyone?)

BEING IN BUSINESS FOR YOURSELF from the book, "The Medicine Woman's Guide to Being in Business for Yourself" by Carol Bridges

"It is time to creatively employ yourself. The money you earn by your small life-enhancing business venture is the foot-in-the-door of the return of the Goddess. The return of balance to planet Earth. The return of nourishment to women and men and all children to come.

The part that you can play, and only you can do well, is written upon the sacred scroll inside you. It is your unique mix of talents, abilities, and experiences as you apply them in the business of being yourself."

Every week a different highly creative blogger will be interviewed. This week artist, designer, author and creator of the brand Swirly, Christine Mason Miller is featured.

My question for you, dear bloggers is this, "What are you doing to support other women struggling to make time for their creative pursuits?"

You can read more Book Club posts here.