A woman actualized is the most comprehensive definition of Goddess. She has full self-awareness—conscious knowledge and clear perception of who she is essentially—and is fully committed to uncovering the hidden aspects of herself as apart of her evolution.
She fully embraces the less flattering aspects of her personality, willing to recognize them and work through them in order to grow spiritually, mentally and emotionally. She knows her darkness informs her light. By coming face-to-face with her demons, insecurities melt away, and she becomes more beautiful, powerful and graceful in her own right.
An actualized woman is an intuitive woman walking purposely on her path. Her mistakes are opportunities for growth, to seek innerstanding and express gratitude.
Here are 10 ways to know you're on this path:
You know you're perfect as you are
This is the ultimate expression of self love and appreciation of self. But you know it will not become truth until you embody it. You're not fooled in the age of obsessive false perfection. You're loving yourself just as you are, knowing that while you may be a work in progress, you can be a masterpiece simultaneously. It’s okay to leave your house without makeup, weave, and excessive jewelry. You embrace your natural beauty with confidence.
2. Emotions don't rule you, they school you
You allow yourself to feel the discomfort of disappointment and work through it. Crying doesn't make you weak or soft, it makes you human. Healing through your tears, learning what sets you off, and avoiding things that invite negative energy are all a part of the process. Anger doesn't make you mean it signifies passion. Our emotions can be very powerful tools for navigating through life. They help us identify our triggers, wounds, and blockages. They are invaluable tools for expression once mastered.
3. Money doesn't define you
You know an empty bank account doesn’t make you any less valuable, it means you have work to do. It means you haven't yet coupled your brilliance with a creative outlet. Knowing that you are worthy and deserving of all you desire is the first step to manifesting. J. Cole said it best during his interview with Angie Martinez: Everyone is selling out for money holding down jobs they don't want "just to survive."
Has this been you? If so, it's time to acknowledge your strengths and implement a plan of action to change it.
4. You trust yourself!
This means you have developed your intuition. You know how and when to be still and listen. You seek counsel from those you know are more wise than you to develop your own inner wisdom. You don't need permission or validation to be you. Self-love and acceptance are your inner compass. You know you are covered with love, that your decisions, even those that are less than great, always lead you to where you need to be.
5. Connection with nature is crucial to awakening
We're living in a time when healthy food choices and trending topics are enough to be considered being "woke." Time spent in the sun, visiting the ocean, your bare feet touching the earth and breathing fresh air are all essential to preventing disease. The ocean purifies and soothes. Dirt is grounding and excellent for helping you regain your bearings. Fresh air in the lungs and deep breathing remind you to be mindful. But this is all things you practice religiously because you're already on your way to becoming an actualized woman.
6. You love without fear
Deep, life altering love is a revolutionary act. What is more profound than a woman who is full of so much love for herself that she is spilling over with love for others? Regardless of past heartbreak and disappointments, love perseveres. You are committed to loving and being love because you know it is the greatest superpower.
7. You know the difference between sacrifice and suffering
An actualized woman never suffers for another in the name of nobility and service. We love, and serve, have compassion for and are even empathetic to that which deserves our energy and attention but we do not suffer for the sake of suffering. Many have the word "suffer" confused with sacrifice when "sacrifice" means to make sacred. "Woman" is no longer synonymous with martyr, burden bearer, or sacrifice but is definitely every bit of sacred.
8.You treat your body like a temple
You commit to a pratice or activity because you know it's good for you. You consciously choose what you put into your body-that goes for food, drink, and lovers. Notice, there is no strict run down of what you "should" put into your body. Only you know what's best for you.
9. You know your weaknesses...
...as if your life depended on it. As a matter of fact, you've become greatly acquainted with your weaknesses. How else can you temper them if you’re not even willing to face them? The ability to be vulnerable is a strength. An actualized woman gets very clear about her shortcomings so she can learn to use them for good. Goddesses walk in this wisdom. It’s what makes us magical.
10. Sex is your spirituality.
You are comfortable being sexy, sensual, and sexual. As a woman, sex is one of our greatest utilities. It's the gateway of life. So, you delight in the blessing of your curves and breasts, the magic of your womb and yoni (Sanskrit for vagina). You understand the anatomy of your body and know the clitoris is equipped with 8,000 nerve endings for the sole purpose of pleasure. Your body was made to be pleasured. You know you're brilliant, strong, and competent and to be a fully embodied sexual being does not diminish you. You are a sexually liberated woman owning who and what she is.
I'm so thankful for books such as Queen Afua's Sacred Woman: A Guide to Healing the Feminine Body, Mind, and Spirit. It helped me plant seeds for my personal actualization. The book is a must-have for melanated women, but especially for those of us awakening to our own #blackgirlmagic.