How to Claim Your Name

You there, with the candles and incense. You with the prayer beads hanging from your bed post and the mala on your wrist. You, trying to explain to your Catholic grandmother what it means to be spiritual but not religious.

I am thinking about you today.

Friend, more than anything I want to see you step into your soulful power.

I want you to see your beauty, yes. But also to understand your deep knowledge, your massive strength.

We spend so much time speaking ill of ourselves.
Critcizing our bodies.
Feeling like not-good-enough moms.
Thinking our ideas are too big, too risky, too self indulgent to be made real.

It is not your fault that these tapes roll on repeat in your internal monologue. You have been culturally conditioned to do so. We all have.

But here is the deep secret.

You are more powerful than the culture that surrounds you.

You are not at anyone’s mercy. You are a warrior. A priestess. A sage.

I know, you might be rolling your eyes right now. And that’s okay. The words we use are flexible. You can chose your own name. 

I have over the years called myself  pastor, minister, coach, teacher, hostess, presenter. And underneath those titles in my own wordy mind I have named myself cultivator, priestess, soul farmer, guide.

But choose our name we must, friend.
So we can step into our power.
So we can own our ways of knowing (by book, or by breath.)
So we can heal and change and transform the world that tried to take our name away.
So we can pass this wisdom-magic on.

I see this claiming all around me — in women I know in real life, and those who I’ve never met. Just this week I wore a necklace made by my mantra writing friend Liz. I stroked my skin with oils mixed by The Gatheress. I ate food-that-heals from my neighbor-chef. (And if cooking isn’t magic and alchemy, I don’t know what is!)

All these women were priestesses to me this week.
Soothing my soul.
Healing my body.
Blessing me for the journey.

That’s what sacred leaders do, friend. That’s who we are.

What about you my Magpie?

Are you ready to claim your lost title?
Will you explore that tiny, oddball thing that’s been tapping at your shoulder?
Will you say “yes” and “Amen” to you staring role?

I think you are.
I know you can.
I hope you will.

(Amen? Amen.)


Name it and Claim It Exercise: What skills have you collected? What ways of knowing do you own? What name will you claim. (Or at least try on for a little while.) Do let us know in the blog comments so I can affirm you with a yes-and-amen.


P.s. I’m living out my title of priestess and hostess by making space for a little Flock of like minded souls. Together we practice one core value each month. February’s focus is Compassion. I hope you’ll join us by clicking here.


Nolwenn January 30, 2014 at 3:48 pm

Aho !
I decided to commit to my Spirituality this year. To own that if I came accross witchcraft *gasp* and plants and gems and and and… more than a decade ago, it was for a reason.
Feeling this urge to just get back to it. To initiate myself, and my girls. To hold rituals and prayers.
I even have this name whispered to me Moons ago, that I wish was mine (my husband does not like it though).

Shirley January 30, 2014 at 5:00 pm

I am feeling called to the names of organizational change doula, story weaver/activist, information alchemist, and journey woman as it is used in Nicola Griffith’s book Ammonite (these women were part teachers, entertainers,witnesses, facilitators, and mediators).

Dionne the Tea Priestess January 31, 2014 at 7:52 pm

For several years I’ve called myself ‘the Tea Priestess’ because at first it just defined my love of tea, the rituals associated with tea, and my spiritual connection to the priestess archetype. But the longer I’ve worn this title, seen the effect my simple offerings of tea has had on friends and family, and brought the spirit and sacredness of tea and its rituals into the way I do business, the more I feel called to really claim it, stand in and move front and center into the starring role of this title of Tea Priestess. So thank you for this loving reminder of what my higher self has been gently whispering to me for a while.

Alane February 3, 2014 at 2:35 pm

hello! i had a hard time choosing a word for 2014 so i went w/liz’s star necklace w/a green stone on it. i love it but still trying to “find” my word.
it will come to me eventually… until then, i am open to the possibilities!
love your blog– thank you so much for sharing your gifts! xo

Jeannie February 5, 2014 at 6:51 am

I have also had many names, titles, hats, but I still have yet to find a way to marry them all. As I approach 30, this has been weighing heavily on me. I guess I am a work in progress.

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