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You should compliment the next woman you meet—here’s why

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Photo: Jamie Kowal

With her trademark down-to-earth, witty style, Guru Jagat has emerged as the modern face of once-underground Kundalini yoga—an ancient practice that blends movement, breathwork, and mantras. Here, the celeb favorite (and Well+Good Council member) reflects on a powerful moment—a praise circle—from a recent RA MA Institute Corporate Retreat…and explores the profound power in complimenting other women.

When a woman decides to exalt herself as a woman, the whole world bows to her. Think back to Beyonce’s performance at the Grammys in 2017. She didn’t even win a Grammy, but all the news was about her—pregnant—exalting a new (and yet ancient) archetype of female power. This is true power—one that radiates from a woman’s self-esteem, creativity, vitality, and her community. It is a true liberation for a woman to create her own caliber and moral code and to elevate the planet through her deep and mythic feminine power.

During our recent RA MA Institute Global Corporate Retreat, I thought deeply about how women can support each other in feeling this power. On the first day, we did that by engaging in one of my favorite team-building practices: the Praise Circle. Together, we spent six hours holding each woman up for her incredible contribution, talents, and commitment. Yes, we spent six hours complimenting each other. I’m not kidding. It was timed. And it was powerful.

We spent six hours complimenting each other. I’m not kidding.

The Praise Circle is fantastically supportive to any team of people—in the workplace or elsewhere. But I feel it is especially important in a group of women. In the past, women were culturally conditioned to think negatively and competitively about one another. The programming of fear and cutting another down is so calcified within our daily experience as women. The stamina it takes to spend time living in recognition and positive reinforcement is demanding, even if you don’t do it for six hours. But for a group of women, it means—and does—so much more.

We’ve seen great advances in workplace and functionality from that extended praise circle. However, I truly believe that the impact it made on my team—and on the world—can’t really be measured.

what is a praise circle
Photo: Jamie Kowal

How to hold your own praise circle

You can hold a praise circle with anyone and anywhere, even with women who have never met before. Here’s how.

1. Gather a group of two or more. (I also believe in self-praise, but that’s another story for another time.)

2. Choose a woman to start with.

3. Allow all of the other women time to say something they most admire or love about the chosen woman. If you are holding a praise circle with women who are new to each other, as was the case at the RA MA corporate retreat, the line that you use is “What I get about you is…” Many women are very intuitive and can pick up on another woman’s best traits and amplify them very quickly.

Keep going in this fashion until all the women have been acknowledged, then dwell in that newly created radiance!

Guru Jagat Guru Jagat is the founder of RA MA Institute for Applied Yogic Science and Technology, a Kundalini yoga school with locations in Venice, CA; Mallorca, Spain; and New York City, and the author of the best-selling book Invincible Living: The Power of Yoga, The Energy of Breath, and Other Tools for a Radiant Life. In 2017 Guru Jagat created the Aquarian Women’s Leadership Society, which has members in over 20 countries, and she is also the founder and CEO of RA MA TV; RA MA Records; and the RA MA Foundation.

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