Karen M. Winkelman

The LifeCrafting Guide

Intuitive Consultant for Your Personal,
Professional and Creative Life

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"All that we send into the lives of others comes back into our own. "
~ Edwin Markham

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by Karen Winkelman Wednesday, May 1, 2024

Letting go of who I could be, to be who I am. 

Part 1: Circles, Rituals, and Conflicted Feelings

This is the first installment in what may become a series of posts about parts of me that I’ve let go of or decided to shed as they no longer fit who I am, want to be, or am becoming…

The Universe works in many interesting and inventive ways to deliver a message you need to receive.

In this case, it was an invitation from a friend to participate in one of her Ceremonial Circles celebrating a sacred time on our lovely planet. Her invitation, while initially warm and enticing, held an undercurrent I couldn’t quite put my finger on. It just felt off in some way.

After sitting with this feeling for a bit, I understood it wasn’t the invitation that felt off; there was something going on within me that felt conflicted about it.

Hmmm, wonder what that was all about.

Perhaps it had to do with the life reevaluation process and the dark night of the soul I had been moving through since my mom passed in 2018.

Life’s shorter than you realize. Make the moments count. Live!

Duh, of course I was living… but yet I wasn’t really feeling fulfilled. I realized I left big parts of me on the back burner of “some day I’ll get to that.”

My art, my writing, my creative self-expression were all benched so I could focus on work and my business and other “important things.”

But what is more important than creating when you are a creative?

For the past several years, I’ve been evaluating almost everything in my life, including what I want to do, how I want to live, how to show up more for me, and how to move my creative expression to the top of the list.

Since my business is, in essence and energy, an extension of me, it was also under reevaluation and reimagining.  

While this process of letting go of who I thought I was and what I thought I wanted is ongoing, I was guided to share some of my insights with you. Many of you are also going through versions of this. It’s part of our spirit’s drive to more authentic and self-sovereign living.  Maybe you can relate.

To Circle and Ritual or Not –

A Discovery of Conflicted Feelings

When I received the Sacred Circle email invitation from a friend, I was excited and hesitant at the same time. What is really going on here?

I enjoy connecting with like-minded people in a sacred ceremony that uplifts all involved… sometimes. Rituals are enriching, right? Um, sometimes. And sometimes, they can be a bit wacky, depending on the people and intentions involved. wink

As a truth seeker, I sat with this inner conflict of feelings for a couple of days until it dissolved in an awareness held below the surface. The surprising aspect of this awareness was the shame attached to it.

You see, I’ve had many past lives as a high priestess, priest, monk, nun, or other such positions of sacred service.

Ritual was part of my life.

Holding Sacred Circles and performing moon and sun ceremonies and rituals dotted decades of my life.

And then it stopped. Or I stopped. Or maybe a bit of both.

After writing down and sharing many of my own rituals, it was as if a book had suddenly, unexpectedly closed. It was a bit disturbing at first.  My questioning mind wanted to understand why.

The last moon ritual I held was only attended by a few people. Instead of feeling replenished by the ritual, I felt empty. People recognized the “Priestess energy” in my aura and were asking me to do this, wanting me to be this person for them, expecting me to be this “priestess,” and I no longer wished to don that Priestess Mantle.

Something inside was nudging me along a different path.

I wondered if I stopped believing in these rituals, ceremonies, and sacred circles. How could something once so integral to my life suddenly hold no connection to me? Interesting conundrum. 

The internal conflict required that I stop doing them.

Yet, a small part of me felt guilt and shame that the High Priestess had abandoned her flock and her calling.

The blessing is that I was unaware I still held this pain until I received the email invitation for the Sacred Circle.

The email triggered introspection, which yielded a new awareness of misplaced guilt and shame that I could now acknowledge, heal, and release.

Yes, indeed, the High Priestess had to “abandon her flock” and her "misunderstood calling” to answer a deeper calling.

To come home to herself.

To live first for herself and then the service of others would organically flow from that.

To learn more about who I was in this life, instead of pulling in the roles and responsibilities of my other lives.

Yes, those other lifetimes are a precious part of who I am on a soul level, and I can draw on them when I need to.

I thought I needed to recreate them because that was what others were expecting from me.

How very interesting. And misguided. Yet a fantastic life lesson!

Now, I continue on this path of artistic and creative expression and an exploration of what might be possible for me. Such as:

Doing what I love and allowing myself to thrive.

Knowing that when I thrive, others do as well.

So thank you to my friend, my Higher Self, and the Universe for delivering a much-needed message to me.

Now I turn to you…

  • What roles and responsibilities are you forcing on yourself because you thought it was who you are, even if you didn’t feel good about it (or secretly resent it)?
  • What are you doing and choosing because others expect it of you?
  • Where are you allowing yourself to express freely from your heart? Where do you limit your Soul expression?
  • What is it time for you to take another look at in your life, your work, your art, and so on?
  • What is it time to let go of so you can be more of who you really are inside?
  • What would light you up inside?

This is just a request for introspection, to be open and willing to explore what is and isn’t working for you.

Notice where you are out of alignment with things in your life.

It’s not a request that you make these changes, yet. wink


Be you. Do you. And it is perfectly fine to change your mind!

With deep love and appreciation,


PS. Do you have something you'd like to share about letting go of things that no longer fit?  I'd love to hear it. Share in the comments area below!

Posted by Karen Winkelman on Wednesday, May 1, 2024 12:00 AM
Categories: Healing, Past Lives, Self-Acceptance, Self-Awareness, Empowerment
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Circles, Rituals, and Conflicted Feelings
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