Chapter 4: Visions grow

The key to unlocking your personal potential for the digital age, using the feminine power, lies in allowing growth by transforming old beliefs.

We all feel a sense of purpose in life. To fulfill it, we continually seek new challenging goals. The aim is to reach for the stars. When one goal is achieved, we set even greater ones. This compels us to experience personal growth.

Moreover, the external opportunities for bringing our vision into the world are expanding. If our purpose involves serving others and making ourselves useful in some way, whether in our immediate environment, community, or the world, the digital age equips us with entirely new possibilities. However, these are merely tools, means to an end.

Human growth propels us to the next stage of personal development. It’s about our relationship with ourselves. Do you know your own needs? Do you know what fills your life with purpose and joy? Do you know your purpose?

Like many others, I, too, was raised in a way that prioritized the needs of others over my own, unlike my brothers. Marshall Rosenberg’s technique of “Nonviolent Communication,” also known as NVC, can help with this. This method involves not only recognizing the feelings and needs of others but also your own, ideally in the present moment. I was a member of an NVC group for some time. After several months of practice, I realized that, as a trained coach and trainer, I was very adept at recognizing the feelings and needs of others. However, what I needed and what was important to me, I only learned to recognize through the necessary training. This is primarily an issue for women. Most men are taught from a young age how to assert their needs. It’s a cultural condition.

Upon closer examination of our hierarchical management systems, cultivated mainly during the industrial age, one can discern a masculine power structure. This system later came to be known as Taylorism and Scientific Management. In this system, there is a hierarchy, with the most influential person at the top. Such systems initially developed in the military. This management style works best when the environment is predictable, clear, unchanging, structured, controlled, and orderly, with unchanging goals. These are all masculine qualities. During the industrial age, this system guaranteed success. It was about efficiently producing and delivering products on an assembly line in a repetitive process.

Women only entered the workforce much later. In Germany, until 1958, a man had the authority to decide whether his wife could work through her employment relationship. While researching a workshop for women at a bank, I became aware for the first time that it was only my generation of women that could open our own bank accounts and manage our own finances as we became adults. Previous generations could only do this with the approval of their husbands or fathers. Even though this time seems very distant, the past still influences the present. Collective beliefs have a long-lasting impact.

Family Systems

Bert Hellinger made a significant contribution to overcoming collective traumas in Germany with his family constellations. In recent times, Thomas Hübl and Otto Scharmer have further explored this topic. In Central Europe, especially, the effects of World War II continue to be felt. Almost every family had losses to cope with. I’ve participated in systemic constellations in the USA and South Africa. Every nation has its own collective traumas, depending on its history.

Different beliefs from the past are effective for women compared to men, depending on their family backgrounds. My ancestors were largely landowners in northern Germany. A son was the guarantee for continuing the business. This explains beliefs like worthlessness, not being good enough, powerlessness, lack of dignity, not being wanted, and similar ones. Claire Zammit’s research has found that these beliefs represent blockages for nearly all women worldwide, in all cultures. Based on my participation in joint research with women from around the world in Claire’s groups, I can confirm this. These beliefs are not limited to daughters of German farmers.

When we realize that we carry not only personal experiences and early traumas and conditioning but also family belief systems and national traumas, it becomes clear that it’s up to our relationship with ourselves to free us from this baggage. Ken Wilber, who co-developed and promoted Integral Theory, describes this path in four steps: clean-up, wake-up, grow-up, show-up. Just as we need to continuously update our computer to meet our demands, we must continually update ourselves to take the next step in life. Ken Wilber has proposed an operating system for this, called ActualizeOs.

Freeing ourselves from old blockages and beliefs and replacing them with better ones is akin to installing a new operating system version on our smartphone.

Claire Zammit has researched for more than 20 years to find what helps women especially to tap into their potential. It became increasingly clear that the desire to live these feminine qualities, not just within the family but also in a professional context, is central. These qualities are inward-focused and involve emotions, love, nurturing, being, and togetherness. It’s also about the new, breaking free in a wild and chaotic way. This is not to say that this is not a desire for many men as well. Both genders need feminine and masculine energies. However, research shows that men have fewer challenges with the male-dominated economic system, primarily focused on goal achievement and profit. The feminine values relationships and togetherness.

Questions: What is your vision? What is holding you back from sharing and implementing it in the world?