I was doing some work yesterday and, as I searched for potential clients, I felt resistance building up. I had to stop and ask myself, “what is my problem?” My initial response was the most honest response and, before I dive into it, I just want to give myself a little pat on the back for not lying to myself so I wouldn’t have to bare the discomfort attached to the truth.
Sometimes we tell ourselves stories that sound and feel better than the truth… not because we are bad people, but because we aren’t ready to deal with our stuff.
The last few weeks, I’ve dealt with a lot of “stuff” that came up as a result of a specific event in my life. I spoke about it to a few friends and family members, but I haven’t shared it with a lot of people and, certainly, not publicly. Sometimes, we have to go through things, then share the learnings. It helps us take the time we need to process things and understand what we’re actually supposed to share. Of course, everyone’s experience is different, but it isn’t a unique experience to face trials and tribulations.
So, I presented myself with an opportunity to be honest and get to the root of an issue I wasn’t 100% aware of, but felt pretty deeply.
“What is my problem?” could sound like a negative question. It isn’t. I’m just trying to uncover where I’m out of alignment. I know WHO I am and I know WHY I do the things I do. When unfamiliar feelings come up, I can either run from them or get familiar with them. I choose the latter and, last night, my decision was consistent with that. I had to actually sit with myself for a little and talk myself through the feels. I had to backtrack a little and identify when I first felt that resistance come up. It took a little, but I was able to pinpoint it. I didn’t stop there; not because I didn’t trust that my initial recollection was correct, but because I’ve been alive for almost thirty-two years and I know, from my studies, training and work as a life coach, this “stuff” is all connected to deeper places; places we don’t spend a lot of time revisiting because we are “busy” doing other things.
What was my problem?
I was intimidated by the titles associated with the names of these prospects. I was intimidated by the resumes. I was intimidated by the professional experience. I’m being really vulnerable here. I made a list of leads and when I looked through them, most of them were white women. I was intimidated by that. I questioned whether or not I would be taken serious because of my last name. I questioned if I had any value to offer these women.
Writing those last couple sentences out prompted a little watery-eye syndrome.
I realized this and my exact thought was, “yo, are you serious?” I scolded myself for thinking so little of myself because of my last name; because I’m a Latina woman offering services that would help women, even white women, in their personal growth. I sat with myself and just allowed myself to feel; experiencing a moment of shame because I was judging myself based on my heritage. I was projecting my fears onto others and creating a story of disadvantage in my head.
Maybe it isn’t a story. Maybe others judge people because of their names.
If they do, that isn’t my business and I’m not going to let the thought of that possibility stop me from doing what I was put on this earth to do. <— I say that today. After processing those feelings and having a conversation with my coach about this realization. I had to face myself and admit, I was battling impostor syndrome; something many people experience. I had to admit to myself, I was getting caught up in things that didn’t matter, like titles, resumes, etc. What I have to offer doesn’t really have anything to do with professional accolades. I’m on the earth to get deep with others and help them get deep with themselves.
Why was I so intimidated?
I had to sleep on it. I continued my work and pushed through the resistance. Then, during a call with my coach, talked through the resistance and admitted something really important. Since I was a young girl, I tried to “impress” those I found “impressive.” With that understanding, I realized, part of me was struggling to find “impressive” conversation points; struggling to create a persona that was “more impressive” than my own. I got so mad at myself for a moment. It was a quick moment, followed by a silent pause. I laughed and told my coach, “I had to remember who I am and what I’m here to do.”
What am I here to do?
I’m here to get to know people; to listen to people; to love people for who they are; to call people on their stuff; to help them let go of that stuff; to rise above that stuff; to dig deeper so they can use that stuff to create an impact in the world; to take the hurts and learnings from their stuff and transform them into open doors, legacies and purpose. I’m not here to impress anyone; not White people, not Black people, not Latino people, not anyone. I’m here to be myself; to bring my experience, gifts, understanding, training and SOUL to the table, so I can help you [women] get deeper with yourselves, get yourselves a little more together, identify your areas of opportunity and work on them, maximize your strengths and expand your impact.
I’m not here to be impressive. I’m here to do work.
I don’t know if this will resonate with you, but if it does, it would be great to let me know. It’s always great to know you aren’t alone. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to share your experience with me. If you aren’t ready to share, it’s okay. I’m cheering for you and pushing beyond these limitations WITH you. Go be awesome and don’t worry about anyone else caring what you look like, sound like, etc. You will do more by focusing on your purpose and doing the hard, thankless work.
God bless you and Happy Mother’s Day to all the mommas and mommas-to-be! 🙂