When was the last time you did something brave? Something that terrified you and made you wonder who the bleep you thought you were, doing a thing like that as though you have every right to?
If you’re a solopreneur or creative, my guess is that you do brave things on the regular.. You may not talk about it. You may have even pretended it wasn’t terrifying while you were doing it.
And yet, you did it. You looked your Imposter Syndrome right in its green eyes, and told it to step back and let you do the thing it was trying to tell you you weren’t good enough for.
Have you taken the time to congratulate yourself on that?
If not, do that right now – because you deserve it!
Even if the Something Brave you did didn’t turn out the way you hoped it would, you took the chance and tried. It was scary, and you did it. So, even if the results were kind of meh, You challenged yourself to do Something Brave, and you followed through and met that challenge.
Now, I’m betting that if the thing wasn’t a rousing success, that silly Imposter Syndrome is right back in your face, squealing, “I told you so!” and doing a ridiculous little dance.
But it’s wrong. You didn’t fail.
By trying Something Brave, you gave yourself information on what worked and what didn’t. Now you can move forward with a better sense of what you’ll need to get that Something Brave done the next time, or the one after that, or….
And you got something else, too.
You actually DID Something Brave. Whether or not it got you where you wanted to go, the real challenge was looking it in the eye in the first place. And since you did that once, you can do it again. Just give that monster a level stare and inform it, “I hear and see you. You can go now – I have Something Brave to do today, and I don’t need your input, thanks all the same.”
And then…. Take the next tiny step, and the one after that. Be brave one step and one breath at a time, if that’s what it takes.
If things didn’t go as you hoped, look at ways you can change things up (preferably one at a time, so you can test out what changes make an impact). If your results were better than you expected, give yourself a cheer, and then consider the next steps that will carry you even further on your journey of bravery.
I’m dealing with that silly little Imposter Syndrome monster lately, myself. As I create this content, and consider a rebranding where I claim my personal magick, he’s raising his head (he’s a he in part because of the patriarchy; he wants men to succeed more than women, which really is silly, as though success is a zero-sum game, when of course it isn’t). He’s asking me who the bleep I think I am, claiming to be a Fairy godShan. “That’s not even a thing!”
“Yes, it is.” That’s my answer to him. Sometimes, you’ve gotta fake it until you make it. I’m still getting used to seeing myself this way, but that’s all right. I don’t need to tell him that.
Because the truth of the matter is that I AM a Fairy godShan. I wave my figurative word-wand behind the scenes, wield my personal magick of really getting what someone wanted to say – the parts that lie beneath the surfaces language can easily touch.
And then I find the language to bring their out into the world in the voice of my client.
It really is magickal. Every time it happens, I’m filled with a sense of wonder and gratitude that I could do this for someone – bring out the whys and truths of who they are and what they bring to the world.
So it’s fair for me to say so. To claim the reality of it.
As a matter of fact, it’s a lot less fair not to, because, if I don’t let anyone know I have this skill, people who are looking for just this (even if they don’t know it yet), can’t find me, and will have no idea that I am here, ready to help (or maybe even that this is a thing someone can do, and just the thing they need).
When we play small, we aren’t just cheating ourselves out of our biggest, brightest, best lives.
We’re cheating others out of access to our gifts, hoarding them all to ourselves, and not even using them for our own benefit.
And gifts unused and unshared tend to stagnate, rot, fade away into nothing more than memories and potential long since erased.
I’ve done this with some of my gifts over the years. I suspect most of us have.
How much more might I have been able to help others, if I hadn’t done that?
And what happens if I shine my focus on offering my unique talents to the people who most need them instead?
How can that be worse than hoarding them, unused?
So – no more. No more playing small. No more listening to the Imposter Syndrome Monster. When he asks, “Who the bleep do you think you are?” I’m going to do Something Brave and answer him simply and clearly. “Shan Jeniah Burton, Your Fairy godShan. And just who are you?”
How about you? What talents and skills are you hiding? How might they help the world, or even a tiny little corner of it? Have you ever taken the time to consider it? Where have you been playing small in your life? What is Something Brave you can do to claim your unique magick? What tiny step can you take today?
If you’re feeling brave enough to share, send me a response, and I’ll cheer you on!