Wednesday, February 4, 2015

It takes courage to grow up and be who you really are. - EE Cummings

I spent most of the first three decades of my life being untrue to myself. I was 'a good girl.'  I was a straight A student and did what was expected of me.

For me, I over-achieved to keep myself distracted from my deeper truth and my own needs.
But living this way has serious negative consequences.

For me, I found myself burned out, depressed, anxious, and disconnected from important relationships.

Even though I was still a high performer at work, all the life was sucked out of me.
But things changed.
Big time.

After a deep healing journey, I learned to align my spirit and actions with my deepest truth and in turn, operate from a space of inner stillness instead of from fear or someone else's expectations.

I stepped into adulthood.

The world needs women leaders to step into their adulthood.
Their deepest values.
To honor the seat of the highest self.
But don't do it hoping you'll change the world. Do it for yourself.

Because when you consistently operate from your core values, the world changes itself.
This is what Gandhi meant by, 'Be the change that you wish to see in the world.'
A woman leader's journey to Freedom from Chronic Stress begins with anchoring your vision and values.

If you consistently operate outside of your core values, you will always experience life as stressful, instead of a gift.
If you find yourself overly rushed with a lack of joy in your step, this is for you.

Here are...

  • You Compare Yourself to Others: When you are true to yourself, you feel solid. You don't need to be the best and you don't have anything to prove. If you look to see how others are doing as a measure of, 'Am I OK?' or 'Am I Enough?,' you're not living true to yourself.
  • You Experience Resentment: Resentment is a feeling that you're being treated unfairly. That someone else is getting more than you when you are doing more than your fair share. If you experience resentment, you are overdoing and not asking for what you need.
  • You Don't Create or Maintain Boundaries: You cannot be everything to everybody. A woman leader creates and communicates healthy boundaries without apology. If you consistently backtrack on your boundaries, it's a sign you would rather someone else NOT be upset with you than be true to yourself.
  • Life Feels Heavy: If you consistently feel like there is a weight on your shoulders or one more thing will throw you over the edge, you're out of alignment.
  • You Experience Jealousy: If you're green with envy over someone's promotion, relationship, or smiley life Facebook photos, you're not living your deepest truth. Instead of seeing jealousy as a negative emotion, view it as a barometer of what you really want for yourself.
  • Your Friends and Family Don't Know the Same Person: This doesn't mean you need to tell Grandma all your crazy escapades from your 20s, but if you withhold where you stand on important issues of politics, sexual orientation, and religion, you're not being true to yourself.
  • You Do Not Wish Other People Well: This does not mean you wish people harm, but you don't wish them well. If you catch yourself thinking, 'Who does she think she is?' or 'Karma will come back around,' you don't wish them well. If you indulge in tabloid magazines, you do not wish people well. If you poke fun or make light of someone expressing them-self, you do not wish them well. When you live a life true to yourself, you look upon anyone - even your enemy - with a soft gaze and warm heart, 'I wish you well.'
  • You Don't Invest In Yourself: Investing in yourself is not a day at the spa, a dream vacation, or marking something off your bucket list. An investment in yourself is something that honors your core values - to take on a student loan to pursue a career you know is meant for you. To invest out of pocket for a physician, therapist, or coach that can help you blossom. To invest time in a cause you care deeply about. If you want to live true to yourself, you need skin in the game.
  • There is Limited Joy In Your Heart: When you live a life true to your values, your heart has an inner smile when you go to sleep each night. Even if there is chaos, pressure, and pain around or within you, your heart smiles with restful peace. When you don't live in your values, true joy is rarely experienced or has to be manufactured by external circumstances that never last.
EE Cummings said, 'It takes courage to grow up and be who you really are.'
How many of these signs ring true for you?
Step into your full adulthood and see where life takes you.

(modified entry originally written by Angela Savitri, OTR/L she helps women leaders be free of chronic stress.)

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