Are you showing up for yourself?
I am sipping a yummy tea latte at Peets on this beautiful fall day, and have a very strong prompting to get this blog out to you. I share a brief story about a very special young woman in my life, and offer coaching around a common problem I see amongst those not reaching their dreams/goals. Enjoy…
The 22-mile drive isn’t far on the map but the distance between my world and hers is pretty big. With each freeway exit I pass, I feel the shift… from an existence of plenty and relative ease to one of survival and constant struggle. It’s the east side.
I reflect on the differences in our environments, and find my way to the foster home where she lives. Of all the foster homes I’ve seen, this is one of the very best. I pull into the driveway and see her long shiny black hair and 15-year-old self, bouncing out of the house toward me with a spirit as big as can be. “Wendy, you have to see this picture!” “What is it sweetie?”… “Prom night with my boyfriend.”
It strikes me just how much she has grown in the last two years, and now she has an older boyfriend who just graduated from high school! Yikes. Deep breath. I reflect on our journey together and realize she is growing into a young woman very quickly, and will just as rapidly be out on her own.
I’ve been seeing Sabrina (fictitious name for her privacy) for regular visits nearly two years now, as her Court Appointed Special Advocate (C.A.S.A.).
As her advocate, I am the person who gives her a voice when she can’t find her words. The one who speaks and pleads on her behalf when others are indifferent, too busy, too out of touch, or too caught up in the little things… like the color of her hair, to really hear her.
I have made direct requests for her countless times to the Judge during Dependency Court Hearings, as she sits beside me. I have physically and figuratively stood beside her when her foster mother was not hearing something very important to her, and role modeled how she could speak on her own behalf… respectfully and clearly.
Her life has been a nightmare. It is one of the worst cases of abuse the agency has ever seen. She will never live with her parents again, and hasn’t since she was 12 years old. It is obvious to most of us why someone like her would need an advocate…
… but what about you beloved?
Who is your advocate? Who is speaking YOUR truth? Who is defending your dreams, wishes, and hearts desires? Who is showing up for you, finding your words, and taking action in your best interest?
If YOU aren’t on that list, please… take a long pause.
What I see so often are women who would die for their children or even their jobs but not show up for themselves. How are we demonstrating what it looks like to protect and nurture dreams AND go after them? Sure, you may do this for your children… you may fight with the teacher or coach you don’t think is being fair, or stand up to a parent whose child is hurting yours but are you doing this for yourself?
This kind of advocacy is critically important to the well being of children, no question. Are you also doing it for yourself?
The truth is when we get out there into the world; we no longer have Mom, Dad, Big Sis, or Big Brother defending or advocating for us. We must learn to do this for ourselves but sadly most people expect someone to come in and save the day, even as 35, 45, or 55-year-old competent women. We unconsciously live as though someone else will do it for us, but the truth is there is no better person than YOU.
Why? Because Precious Soul, you are the only one in the world who has the most intimate knowledge and understanding of YOUR core truth(s), your purpose, your souls design, and the intricate details of your heart. You live inside your mind, body, and heart every single day. You will admit things to yourself you would never dare speak out loud. No one else can ever do that for you. Is anyone else doing it for you? Probably not. You are, by far, the best person for the job… and if you are tapping into God or a Divine Source, you must know just how important these messages are, yes? Could it be that you are being called to rise up in a way no one else will? It doesn’t have to be huge but it could be extremely important.
So, what to do when you find yourself playing second fiddle to someone else’s dreams, or your employer? Or, when you put your dreams on hold until the kids get older. Or perhaps you’ve just realized there is a small, quiet part of you waiting for someone else to come and save the day, or do it for you altogether.
#1: Tune into your heart, and wonderfully intuitive nature.
Listen to your gut. It is the best navigation instrument you own and it goes everywhere you do! How awesome is that?! I know we’ve heard this a thousand times but meditation really does have a powerful effect on our ability to hear this inner guide. Taking a walk can also help you tune into what your heart and “gut” is trying to tell you. Journaling can do this for you too. Some of my biggest revelations happen when I write unedited thoughts and feelings on a page. It’s tough to deny the truth when it is staring at you in black and white. Even a few sentences can get you there. Commit to writing just one sentence a day for the next 7 days, and see what comes forth.
Hear this beloved, fear not. You will never be given a guidepost or revelation you are not strong enough to handle.
#2: Write down 3-5 bullets describing what you are being drawn to do in your life and business over the next 12 months. Where do you want to be by October 29, 2014?
Break those goals into smaller ones you can accomplish monthly, then weekly.
#3: Schedule your monthly and weekly goals.
As in… literally break them down and put them into your weekly calendar as you would a date with a friend, a meeting, or an event you’ve committed to. If it’s on your calendar, you are far more likely to do it.
#4: Become your own advocate.
- Show up for yourself, as you would your own child, niece/nephew or friend. When you don’t show up for yourself, you lose trust in your ability to follow through and deliver on your behalf… just as you would a friend who didn’t show up or honor their word.
- Speak on your own behalf, truthfully and authentically. Try doing this more and more each day, and see what magic happens.
- Give your dreams a voice.
- Express your truth.
#5: Find an accountability buddy, or coach.
Get out of hiding and tell someone what you are up to. Begin to practice voicing what you want, where your heart is, what you see yourself doing to make a difference in the world. The more you talk about it, the more likely you are to take action. Speaking of…
#6: Take action.
You’ve heard it before… every journey begins with a single step. You have to get moving to go about changing your life. You can start small but the important part is to begin! As a bonus, get comfortable being uncomfortable. It will do wonders for your confidence. If you feel comfortable, you are not growing and nothing will change. I wish it were different too 😉 but it just isn’t.
#7: Take notice of how you feel doing the above. Are you afraid? Excited? Energized? Paralyzed?
All those emotions are normal. Allow yourself to feel, express it in writing or with a friend and then take action anyway.
Please, tell me how you did with this exercise. I’d love to hear from you! Post a comment below. Ready, set… let’s go ladies! The world is waiting for you… beautiful, amazing, all-out… YOU.
Love & Light,
SoulFUEL™ Business Coach & Your Freedom Fighter