Discover the five things I’ve learned about what happens when women trust their instincts, dignify their values, and speak their truths — values and truths that redefine what it means to be a hero.
Humans are storytellers. That’s how we learn, create culture, and determine shared values. I’ve been a story lover, story creator, and story gatherer throughout my life — as a voracious book-reader and movie-watcher, an author, and a curator of conferences. As a student of history and mythology, I know that most of humankind’s origin stories, hero’s tales, novels, and films have been created by men. Embedded in those stories are the beliefs we live by — beliefs about women and men, power and war, sex and love. There’s much to enjoy in the old stories and hero’s adventure tales. But even as a young girl I longed for stories I could relate to. Where were the tales that celebrated the experiences and dreams and visions of women? Why were women painted as fickle and weak — second in creation yet first to sin? Why were men described as white knights with superior minds and values? And why were men always the heroes?
For more than twenty years I have been organizing conferences for women that question and defy our culture’s prevailing definition of what it means to be a hero. I’ve come to see that it’s up to us to tell new stories that balance out millennia of one-sided storytelling. And I’m not talking about Wonder Woman or other outdated shoot-‘em-up tales of winners and losers. I’m interested in stories — on the page and in our real lives — that celebrate a different kind of hero. I’m ready for women to dignify some of our best qualities and give muscle and clout to leaders and creators who value caretaking, champion compassion, and choose communication over vengeance and violence. We all can conjure, tell, and teach these new stories. We can live them out in our own lives. This class (open to everyone), is based on my new book Cassandra Speaks: When Women are the Storytellers, the Human Story Changes.
During our time together we’ll:
1. Dig deep for our truest voice.
2. Explore what it means to do power differently—at home, at work, in the world.
3. Learn some ways to overcome the imposter syndrome.
4. Practice what I call the “Do No Harm and Take No Shit” meditation.
5. Map next steps on our own hero’s journey.
Throughout the class there will be time to ask questions and to engage in meditation and writing exercises.
I hope you will join me.