Did you know that the most courageous thing you’ll ever do in your life and your business is to show up in your power?
One of my clients, I’ll call her Calista, was telling me about an experience she’d had years ago at a yoga retreat. She’d chosen to go to the retreat because she really wanted to support her body in healing and getting stronger.
When she got there, it seemed like everyone else was far more fit and flexible than she was. Calista sometimes couldn’t do the poses, or did them for far less time than the instructor was asking for.
What I heard when Calista was telling me about her experience was the incredible courage she demonstrated. She didn’t miss a single class during the retreat.
She kept showing up in her power.
And that’s huge.
It’s easy to show up for things when we feel like we’re at the top of the class, or at least in the midrange. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s great to hone our skills and use our strengths.
Our real courage shows, though, when we do things in areas where we DON’T feel at our best. Especially when we feel at the bottom of the class and out of our power.
Having coached business owners for over a decade, I’ve heard this a LOT. For some people, it’s going to a mastermind retreat where it feels like everyone else is further ahead. For others, it’s going to networking events, making a video or launching a program.
The biggest problem here is that we’re focused on ourselves in unproductive ways.
Our brains are lovely and useful and we’d be lost – or at least vegetative – without them. And yet, any strength that’s overused becomes a weakness. The same is true with our minds.
When we get stuck in our minds, we get stuck in our doubts, our fears, our judgments and our indecision.
Whether you’re in a group, a class or alone in your office, when you feel stuck or out of alignment, try the 3 Steps of AAH.
So many of us are masters of self-judgment. Sadly, women seem to excel in this area. We judge what we say, how we look, what we eat, our businesses, our kids … the list goes on and on.
We judge and berate ourselves thinking that we’re helping ourselves get better. Instead, we’re tying ourselves up and keeping ourselves from doing what we’re here to do and being who we were created to be.
- Take a few deep breaths.
- Let your attention gently wonder over your body. Is there tension anywhere? Pain? Hollowness? If so, gently smile at that spot without any need to change it.
- Smile at yourself, just as you are. Include all your quirks, your ridiculousness, your weaknesses and your strengths. If you find judgments coming up, smile at them, too. They’re a sign that part of you is feeling scared.
See if you’re aligned with the present moment. When you’re not aligned, your thoughts are racing forward to what might happen, out to what others are thinking, or back to what happened in the past, whether it’s what happened an hour ago or years ago.
Being “out of now” often shows up in your posture. So again, notice your body.
Are you leaning forward with the energy of pushing, reaching or trying to control? This indicates fear, a sense of lack and anxiety.
Are you collapsed in on yourself, shoulders and neck hunched, looking down, eyes darting? This can be a sign of resignation, defeat and withdrawing.
Research has shown over and over that our posture affects our feelings.
- Sit or stand while vertically aligned. You may have to look at yourself in a mirror from the side to see when you’re actually standing perpendicular to the floor.
- Relax your shoulders, letting them go down and back, opening your chest. Think of the superhero pose, with your hands on your hips or by your side.
- Plant your feet, soften your eyes, and smile slightly.
When you focus your mind on yourself, you invite self-judgment in. You also shut yourself off from those around you.
- Ask yourself this question: Who can I help?
If you’re in a group, look around. Who around you needs help? A kind word, a smile, and a listening ear can make the world of difference for someone else.
If you’re by yourself, sit quietly, take a few deep breaths, ask, “Who can I help?”, and see what answers come up. Give them space to form.
So that’s it: Accept, Align, Help – 3 easy steps to get back into your power, connect with yourself and others, and make a difference.
Let me know what happens when you try this out. You can leave a comment below.