Welcome! This is part of a series that is all about feeding your soul — how to live a more inspired life. I’ll be sharing some of the lessons I’ve learned from running a business, spirituality, relationships, side hustles, successes, challenges, staying inspired, finding motivation, and everything in between. Because the truth is… food is just one part, really. It’s everything else going on INSIDE that makes a big difference in how you relate to food to begin with, how you feel overall, and how well you can sustain a healthy life you love.
Have you ever wanted to run a marathon, share your art, write a book, speak on stage, start a company, or even just rock a bikini without feeling an ounce of insecurity? Well, I have good news: you even feeling that little bristle means you’re plugged into your life enough to hear something it’s trying to tell you. If you’re feeling stifled by all the what-ifs and wondering how to bridge the gap between wanting to do something and feeling confident enough to actually get out there and give it a go, here are seven of my favorite secrets for owning your confidence in any situation.
1. There are more people who need help than there are helpers.
I love how author and motivational speaker Gabby Bernstein frames this. I recently attended her Spirit Junkie Masterclass in New York City, where she asked a room full of coaches and entrepreneurs, “How many of you worry that what you’re doing has already been done or is too similar to what someone else is doing?” A few hundred hands shot up across the auditorium. “Look around this room,” she said to the crowd. “There are more people out there who need your help than there are people sitting in this room right now. There are not enough of us.”
Whenever you doubt that what you’re doing matters, remember that there are more people who need help than there are people to help. Until everyone is fed, clothed, housed, healthy and loved, roll up your sleeves! Speaking of…
2. There are some people who need to hear it from YOU. (Yes, just you.)
Business coach Marie Forleo once shared how when she met her husband, she was living off of mac and cheese and, no matter how much he tried to get her on the green-juice train, she just couldn’t stomach it. Until, that is, she met her good friend and Crazy Sexy You author Kris Carr. Marie went home one day excitedly telling her husband all about her newfound love of juice, fruit and veggies. Dumbfounded, he looked at her and exclaimed that this is exactly what he had been telling her for years! She truly hadn’t heard it from him (even though he’d been technically saying it) but when her friend said the exact same stuff, it resonated.
There is a way you do what you do and say what you say that will resonate with your tribe, when the exact same message could be missed by others. Don’t forget that YOU have a unique message and manner that you bring to the world, and it’s exactly right for those who are meant to hear it.
3. Say, “Woo!” instead of, “Ahh!”
Next time you’re on a rollercoaster, look around you. There are two types of people. The ones who throw their hands in the air and say, “Woo!!!” and the ones who clench their seatbelts screaming, “Ahh!!!” Which are you?
In life, I hope you’re the one having the time of her life, smiling like a big ole goofball in the free fall. Anxiety and excitement are different sides of the same emotion. One just fills you with fear, angst and trepidation. The other looks at the same exact situation with curiosity, wonder and even joy. If you’re feeling intimidated, try to turn your ahh to a woo, hold on tight, and enjoy the ride.
4. You don’t have to be perfect.
If you’ve spent the majority of your life earning straight As, getting to work early and generally putting others before yourself… just a reminder: you don’t have to be perfect. That was never part of your contract in taking this wild ride around the sun. You get to dream up whatever roundabout path you want on this earth. You don’t have to follow a certain path, stick to a certain career, stay where you aren’t happy, or even have a reason for doing something other than it lights up your sweet soul.
I love how Anne Lamott puts it: “Oh my God, what if you wake up some day, and you’re 65, or 75, and you never got your memoir or novel written; or you didn’t go swimming in warm pools and oceans all those years because your thighs were jiggly and you had a nice big comfortable tummy; or you were just so strung out on perfectionism and people-pleasing that you forgot to have a big juicy creative life, of imagination and radical silliness and staring off into space like when you were a kid? It’s going to break your heart. Don’t let this happen.”
5. No one is watching you as closely as YOU are.
You know those people you’re so concerned about? They probably aren’t even paying much attention, anyway. And not in a bad way — it’s just that everyone is so wrapped up in their own life, that they’re more worried about what others are thinking about THEM than they are about you. They have dogs and kids and bosses and deadlines and bills and errands and relationships and a million other things taking up MOST of their day. So what if you do end up failing miserably or choosing a path they don’t understand? That leaves about 0.005% of their day left to think about you, then get back to cleaning up the couch cushions their frenchie just ate.
Life coach Martha Beck says that we have about five people we are thinking of specifically when we imagine what everyone out there will think. Who are yours? If they’re truly on your team, they’ll love you no matter what, be proud of you for taking a leap, and be in your corner to cheer you on.
6. You never know who you may be inspiring.
Also, remember: all those people you might be worried about laughing at you — there’s also a possibility (and I would argue a much greater one) that you’re actually inspiring the socks off of them. It takes confidence to create something, speak your truth, create something new and wear whatever you damn well please. I would wager there are probably people watching you who you don’t even know, who are inspired by what you do and wanting to muster a touch of it themselves.
7. Trust in the teacher of love over fear.
This is another quote I heard from Gabby Bernstein and her book The Universe Has Your Back. It’s probably been my biggest mantra over the course of the past year running my business. You can either expect that life teaches you lessons you should fear, or that there is a force so powerful that it somehow brought together oceans and stars and oxygen and trees to recycle the oxygen and gravity and YOU. And that maybe, just maybe, this force that hangs everything in perfect balance created you to be just as spectacular and essential as the bee that pollenates the flowers, the algae that feeds the ocean, and the mama that grows life inside her belly. Just sayin. You can look at it either way, but it helps to feel like you’ve got some pretty powerful love on your side.
8. It’s actually selfish NOT to share your gifts.
When it comes down to it, there is only one of you who will ever walk the earth… Who are you to keep yourself all to yourself? People can debate a lot of things, but at this time and this place in this form, no one is debating that there is just a single precious one of you. Your gifts. Your heart. Your big laugh and the way your eyes light up over people in need and pepperoni pizza. As fitness coach Kacie Fitzgerald says, “You have one life to do everything you were ever gonna do. Act accordingly.”
Now get out there and own how amazing you are, love!
Tell me in the comments below — which step resonates most with you?