To celebrate all things woman today, we wanted to share with you 3 incredible women who have inspired us over the years - both professionally and personally - and who have shaped the way we think about love
1. Brene Brown | It’s Brene for so many reasons! She has taught us about the power of vulnerability and the importance of revealing our true selves, even when we're shit scared to do it. Through the many books we’ve read of hers over the years. we’ve learnt about courage, compassion and connection and how they are key to living and loving authentically.
Brene is possibly Project Love’s most quoted woman - we talk about her in workshops, at speaking gigs, during coaching sessions and online through our courses and blog (so much that it’s getting a bit weird now..). If you know of her, you’ll know why. And if you don’t then check out her now famous TED talk to get acquainted
Our favourite Brene quote:
“You are imperfect, you are wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging”
Thank you Brene for giving us the gift of imperfection, for showing us how to dare greatly, how to live a wholehearted life annnnnnnd for the tools to rise strong when we fall.
2. Brenda Shoshanna | She is a psychologist, relationship expert , Zen practitioner and the author of a book that completely transformed our whole understanding and approach to love.
In Zen and The Art of Falling in Love, Brenda offers a unique understanding of love and relationships that is beautifully illustrated through lessons from the Zen practice (although you don't have to know anything about Zen practice to get it!). I’m not going to attempt to summarise these as it would take me all day - both mine and Selina’s copy of this book have notes, scribbles and pages folded on pretty much every page, it’s THAT good.
But I will share with you one of the key lessons from the book and that is to look inside of ourselves for the love that we seek. There is nothing to fear in opening up to love, but everything to gain.
“When we sit, we open our own treasure house. Rather than do this, however, most of us first seek to find the treasures another person can provide. We calculate their value to us. When we approach relationships in this manner, we are coming as beggars, seeing the other as a source of supply. When we can enter a relationship with our treasure house already open, there is no end to the wonders we can find, both within and between ourselves and another”.
3. Marianne Williamson | Selina and I were lucky enough to see her speak last Easter, she speaks with such an urgency that I’ve never come across before. Her book “A Return to Love” was released back in the 90’s but it’s still as relevant today as it was then. Based on the metaphysical text “A Course in Miracles”, she makes the distinction between fear vs love and that we can’t have one without the other.
“Love is to fear as light is to dark; in the presence of one, the other cannot exist. So wherever there is a place of fear in your life, think of one thing -- even if it's just a thought you can think, where you can generate love to cast out the fear.”
When we’re feeling stuck in love, she says it’s rarely through a lack of love and rather, a mental block to our awareness of its presence. This thinking inspired a lesson in our Get Ready for Love course called “Love is all Around You”. If we take our focus away from where love is lacking in our life and turn our attention and focus on where love is flourishing and growing in our life already then we can train the mind to focus on the good shit (rather than focusing on the bullshit.. which we all have a tendency to do sometimes, right?). This shifts us from a mindset of lack and scarcity into a mindset of abundance. And how do we do that? Through the practice of gratitude (here is an app that can help you get into the gratitude groove).
Through Marianne, we have learned about the power of forgiveness and how it is the most important practice in any journey of healing. But she reassures us that it’s not always easy! It starts with willingness, we can be willing to forgive those that hurt us because when we don’t, the only person we punish is ourselves. It is the purest act of love there is.
These three women have had SUCH a big effect on us and how we think about love and life and it’s such an honour to share them here with you.
Who are the women that have inspired you - comment to let us know! Let’s celebrate them and let’s celebrate each other today.. and every day that follows actually..
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