I've spent a HUGE part of my life worrying about what others think of me. Every decision in my life wondering what people will think of it. How will they react? Will they like it? Will it be too weird? Living my life for social acceptance. How exhausting! When I think back at my journey within this life theme, I have to say that becoming a mom was one of the biggest milestones that caused me to begin shifting out of this paralyzing state. Something shifted when I became a mom. Like I grew a set of confidence along with giving birth. I got so much courage when I realized I had someone else to live for. That was back in 2012.
Then I became an entrepreneur - like a real one. Owning my law firm from 2011 to 2015 didn't feel like entrepreneurship because the business was so big, together with the fact I had business partners. In 2015 when I became a solopreneur, where my personal brand - ME- became the product, I was forced to be open to the world. Now all of a sudden EVERYONE was watching - or so I thought in my mind. I remember just making the decision from law to awareness mentoring was filled with thoughts of fear and worry because of what people would think. Until I stopped caring and realized I could live this life for the world or I could live this life for me. So I jumped..
Along the way I stumbled along a superpower. Vulnerability. The first time I was every REALLY vulnerable was on a stage in front of 250 women in 2015 for my first speaking engagement. I opened the speech up in a mask, and let out all my fears. You can see the speech here. And what followed was so surprising for me - someone who had always been so afraid of connection, afraid of being seen - my imperfections, my journey, my humanity. Yet for some reason, it was inspiring. I saw tears in the audience. Connection. Truth. Women came up to me afterwards and told me their story, their feelings, and how by me sharing my story and my truth, it helped them see they weren't alone.
You see, vulnerability isn't a weakness. It's courageous. It takes courage to be who you really are. In an age where perfection is sold on the magazine stand, where social statuses are "liked", where we can control what people see - most of us don't post our bad days. We don't post pictures of ourselves without makeup, of our messy homes, or statuses of when we fucked up. We live in an age of facades. But if you bring it back to the beginning - children are vulnerable. They don't give a shit about what they wear, whether they have chocolate on their face, or what they say. They'll break down in a dance or a song in the supermarket, and wear crazy pants and tutu any day of the week. They show up in their truth even if it's melting down in public, no shame in their game.
Shame. Why we aren't vulnerable. Shame is learned. When did we become ashamed of being ourselves? Whatever happened, it's time to let it go. It's time to share ourselves to each other. Because that's all it takes. One person to reveal what's beneath the mask. One person to shine in their humanity for others to say, wow I can do this too. It feels good to be myself, and it's actually easier and less tiring to just be me.
So that's my commitment to you. To continue to be real. It's a daily practice. I still wear makeup. I still double think what I'm wearing - is it appropriate, will it make anyone uncomfortable. I still double read my posts, my blogs. But I share myself. I commit to sharing my journey. My mistakes. I'm working on the rest. I wear way less makeup - something I am doing for me and my daughter. And caring way less about what the world thinks. Where would we be if the visionaries of the world worried about what others thought? We would not be where we are today.
I will leave you with this quote by the beautiful Marianne Williamson, lead teacher of A Course in Miracles.