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Finding Oneness: How to Be a Beautiful Enemy Instead of a Frenemy

As you’ve probably noticed, we women are generally wired to create harmony and avoid confrontation. That’s why it’s not always easy for us to have difficult conversations with other people. However, when you don’t honor your need to so, you are operating from a less talked about tendency within your femininity – your shadow. The thing is, the more conscious we are of our shadow and the more willing we are to name and handle our wounds, the more likely we will create authentic harmony within our lives. (Bullshit harmony is just superficial banter that lacks girth and truth. Who needs that?)

This is a powerful week on planet Earth.

This week, the full moon in Pisces exemplifies how we are all connected. Venus – the planet associated with love, values, desire, relationships and money – is holding hands (conjunct) with Saturn – the planet of structure, discipline and purpose. And, the north node of fate and destiny is also aligned in the sign of Scorpio, signifying transformation. A new twelve-year cycle starts this week with regards to our soul’s path. And, we are all being challenged and supported to up level how we show up for our purpose, ourselves, those we love dearly, and for our community.

As we enter this new phase, you may experience a lot of shadow dancing with others, either projecting your issues onto them or being the benefactor of their projections on you (fun times.) It’s important to remember that when we go down the path of fault finding within our relationships with others, blaming people or even trash talking, the only person we are really hurting is our self. After all, there really isn’t any other. (And, we’re human, so if you finding yourself projecting, take a deep breath, and forgive yourself.  It’s all good, assuming we course correct with consciousness.)

We are all one.

Despite our individual inclinations, the underlying emphasis remains our inner connectedness. Fundamentally, we are all the same and ultimately one. This is important to remember as we head into the autumnal equinox this Sunday where light and dark will come to balance, and here in the northern hemisphere we prepare for longer nights and shorter days.

What we see in others is just a reflection of ourselves. The more we objectify it as something outside of us and project our darkness onto other people, the more we actually give away our power. Though, accepting our innate oneness (as well as our individual darkness) doesn’t mean we need to give up the right to stand up for ourselves. It’s quite the contrary. Accepting our oneness is in actuality an invitation to stand up for our selves with more love, dignity and conscious communication.

You see, when someone we are in relationship with does something to upset us we can react in one of two ways. We get to choose whether to behave like a frenemy or a beautiful enemy.

A frenemy is someone who despite appearing to have someone else’s best interest in mind on the outside, really doesn’t once they’re behind closed doors. They may trash talk someone they are close with, building a case against them, while harboring negative emotions like jealously, discontent and even rage. They’re often derogatory towards people in a covert way, even when they are nice to their face – inviting them over, sharing things with them and continuing to make plans with them. At worst, a frenemy can be intentionally harmful and deceitful. At best, a frenemy is catty, gossipy and dramatic. Regardless of the degree to which a frenemy operates, the underlying issue is usually a projection – a disowned aspect of oneself showing up as an aggravating action of another.

When another person triggers us deeply (so much so we find ourselves talking shit when they aren’t around or ruminating about them in our own privacy) it’s generally because there is something they are reflecting to us that we need to deal with in ourselves. The degree to which you identify your own triggers and then lovingly integrate those parts of yourself that you’d rather deny exist at all, is the degree to which your relationships will remain healthy. (I actually believe this so much that I will venture to say that the health of the entire planet depends upon all of humanity figuring this out!)

The flip side of frenemy is what Tal Ben-Shahar would call a beautiful enemy.  A beautiful enemy is a friend, colleague, family member or anyone you deal with in your life, who can name what is bothering them in the context of a relationship, and speak to it in an adult, mature fashion. A beautiful enemy is not snide or persnickety and doesn’t trash talk others behind their backs. Instead, a beautiful enemy takes note when something feels off, does some reflection regarding what the trigger is and, when appropriate, has a forthright conversation to address the issue without resorting to passive aggressive or defaming tactics. A beautiful enemy challenges you with your best intentions in mind. They won’t always agree with you or support your choices, but they come from a heart-centered place, and steer clear of unnecessary drama.

Being a beautiful enemy means taking a conscious stand and sometimes speaking to the unspeakable. It’s not always easy but ultimately, it is deeply self-nurturing despite any controversy that may ensue.

I understand that more often than not in life we contend with otherness, not oneness. As we head into the longer nights and shorter days ahead, I challenge you to make a commitment to own your power … all of it. This may require you to become super comfortable with your own darkness. Though this isn’t an easy assignment, I can wholeheartedly say making peace with the parts of yourself that you’d rather deny exist at all doesn’t only open the pathway for your personal potential, but it serves as a healing for the whole planet.

Remember, our relationships are the most important aspects of our lives. They are the source of strength in times of need, pleasure in times of happiness and they provide incredible meaning during all of the in-betweens. Material success and achievement while fulfilling on one level, may be empty without a community to share them with.  As  you define success based on your values and efforts, I encourage you to consider community and oneness as an intricate part of what motivates you and your definition.

Happy Equinox, loved one. Please share your thoughts and feelings with me in the comments below.

As always, I send you my deep love.

Big hugs,


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  • Kerri Richardson

    Love this, Jenn. I totally agree with how important the shadow work is, and I also believe that if everyone could really subscribe to this truth of “oneness” that they’d be much less hate and violence. How can you hurt someone who you see as yourself? As the same? It’s in the false perceived differences that gives others permission to lash out. By being a beautiful enemy instead of a frenemy, everyone benefits.

    Thanks for the important reminders!

    • jenn

      Thanks so much for the comment, Kerri. It’s funny writing this post I was reminded of how hard it is to see our own shadows (they’re generally hidden from us- which is why we call them shadows.) In doing so, I reflected upon all of the uh-mazing coaching you’ve provided me with through the years. We’ve done some deep work together, and I am eternally grateful to you for the numerous times you’ve taken a stand for me, helping me to either see my own shadow or sort through someone else’s. Coaches and mentors are worth their weight in gold. Thanks for the comment and your commitment to doing such authentic work. You are an incredible coach! Sending you love, Jenn

      • Kerri Richardson

        Thanks for your beautiful words, Jenn! A coach needs a willing and present partner for the magic to happen, so thank YOU for your courage. xoxo

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