3 ways to take the lead in your life

 

You’d be shocked at how small I can become. Like those skilled contortionists at the circus, I molded myself into an ideal image I thought I was expected to uphold. I knew how to play the game, keep everyone smiling, keep everyone clapping.  


I tried to make everyone happy, lived for other people’s expectations, never asked questions, and avoided stirring the pot at all costs. 
 
"Play nice.
Play your part.
Play it safe.
Play small."

 
I tried so damn hard to fit into a box; a box that I willingly jumped in, I might add!  
The prison of expectations and the shame for falling short was not something I could blame others for. I was the one who needed the approval. I was the one who wanted to have everything under control. I was the one playing so small…
 
that is until I decided to own my life, play to my strengths, and let go of the opinions of others. 
 
I dare you to play big. Reject the role you were never meant to play and take the lead in your own life. Free yourself from the prison. Jump out of the box. Give yourself permission, I promise the only one keeping you small is you. 

If you’re unsure where to start, here are 3 of my go-to tips to get aligned + come alive:
 
1. Get honest + put pen to paper! 
Journaling is one of the most effective ways to discover who we are, what we want, and coach ourselves through our mental blocks. It doesn’t have to take a lot of time either. Give yourself 5 minutes a day. The hardest part is just sitting down to do it!
 
2. Find your true tribe!
Take an inventory of the people in your life. Are they supportive of your growth? Do they help you become a better you? Do they know the real you and love you for all your strengths, quirks, and weirdness? If not, it’s time to make a shift. Don’t waste any more time trying to convince people of your worthiness. Get around people who already know; they are your true tribe. 
 
3. Take a risk.
You can’t play big if you’re committed to staying small and safe! Go to that dance class that intimidates you. Ask a new friend out to coffee. Apply for the job. Make the damn thing. Commit to your growth + healing. Just make a move, girl! 


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How much is staying stuck costing you?

*** This article was originally published as an email sent to the Tribe in early 2016. If you want  fresh content delivered right to your inbox, >> join! <<

Staying stuck cost me my life.

Four years ago, I was one of the funnest, most vibrant people you'd meet. If you knew me, you'd know that I was the life of the party and always smiling. What you wouldn't know, is that I was completely insecure, did "good" things to give myself worth, was in constant need of affirmation, and was carrying around a TON of shame.

And I paid the price for my brokenness.

Nothing I did was ever good enough. I lost friendships because I lacked boundaries, suffered from anxiety-induced health problems, tried to become the people I admired instead of owning my uniqueness; I burnt myself out and beat myself up.

With help I slowly began to shift. I got to know myself. I set goals. I saw coaches and counselors. I read books. I gave my life to the real work of change.

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Looking back, I can see how clearly I paid the price for my stressful way of life: all the busyness, the shame, the fears and insecurities weren't serving me. They were billing me and I was paying the price I chose to pay until I stepped up and owned my life.


What payments are you unwilling to make any longer?

What are you paying for that you could release?

Free yourself up from the burden. Stop paying for things you don't deserve.

It's expensive to stay broken.


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Joy and Peace: Part 2 Your Truth

Standing in your truth in during the holidays

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Along the journey to self care and living your most vibrant life, you will uncover a lot of road bumps. When I surveyed the Tribe for this series, you said you sometimes feel like the “glue” that holds your family together. You said that you walk on eggshells, downplay your brilliance, play a role in the family that isn’t a true reflection of who you are but who others need you to be, and often your self care struggles when visiting family during the holidays. It is no lie that family time often brings up old wounds and dynamics that you don’t deal with in your day to day life. You might find yourself falling back into old patterns and feeling really frustrated at yourself and others.

It doesn’t have to be this way. You can have a peace filled, joyful holiday season and stand in your strength.

First, I want to say that dealing with family dysfunction is hard. In part 1 of the series we talked about boundaries and how you can not change others. Today we are going deeper in what you can do for YOU, how to own your truth and stand in the brilliance of who you are.

1. Own your truth

Last year I was a practicing vegetarian. At family events in the past I had been picked on for my small stature, and because I was weary of certain people’s opinions of my food choices and fear of the comments, I denied my truth and ate meat at all family functions.  It made me feel like a phony and like I had to hide who I really was to be accepted.

Hiding is never the answer.

Okay, so hiding isn’t the answer. But how do you address real issues that cause a division in your family? How do you actually OWN your truth?

Be honest about who you are.

This doesn’t need to be a huge discussion. In fact, it may require no words at all. Function intentionally as yourself.

taking a few minutes to center at my parent'sthanksgiving weekend

taking a few minutes to center at my parent'sthanksgiving weekend

Do you practice yoga in the mornings? Practice yoga.

Do you pray before meals? Pray.

Do you eat a certain way? Come with food to share!

Do you need extra time alone to center yourself? Take the time.

Do you have something big you want to celebrate? Talk about it with your family!

If people ask about your actions, be prepared to kindly answer. But I beg you, do NOT make excuses for living how you live.

Respond in kindness

When that uncle starts ranting about political issues you don’t agree with or when someone makes a false assumption, think before you respond.  There may be situations you know in your gut you need to address, others you know you need to be silent. Practice discernment here. Remember that other’s opinions and words are 100% their responsibility. You can not change them, you can only love them.

What will you embrace about yourself this year? Is it a relationship? Is it your faith? Is it telling your family about your choice to get counseling or seeing a life coach? Is it being honest about your career choice? Your relationship status?

Be who you really are. Be proud of it too.

2. Saying no to the soul sucking

When drama is a norm it can be difficult to recognize and kindly remove yourself.  Drama and emotional strain are sure ways to empty your joy and peace.  Your emotional energy is not an endless supply. Take time to do things that nourish you. Take the time to pour into yourself and set some healthy personal boundaries.  

Prepare in advance to take good care of your emotional state by asking yourself these questions:

What are situations or people that trigger you?

What helps you recharge your emotional boundaries?

What is your baseline for personal health?

(Seriously, write these things down!)

This holiday season, choose to stand up for yourself and your needs. If you need to walk away from a conversation, IT IS OKAY TO WALK AWAY. You will not ruin the spirit of the day by drawing a line with gossip or with a needy family member. Use your no.

“No. Nope. Nah. No thanks. Not today. Not for me. I don’t think so. I’m not up for that. I can’t.”

Which one fits best on your lips?

“Did you hear about…” Not today.

“Want to pick up an extra gift for me for the gift exchange? I forgot about it!” I don’t think so.

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Make up one that fits with your holiday situation! It’s fun, right!?

Remember, You are never ever the glue that holds people together.

People choose to be together or not based on a series of choices. If your honest presence makes people feel uncomfortable, instead of denying who you are to be the glue, maybe start seeing yourself as the SALT. Your presence brings out what is already there, good or bad! You don’t change it or keep it from changing, you just expose it. And that, darling, is more than okay.

Stay salty, stay true, and use your NO to keep you present.

I truly believe when you stop worrying about everyone else and just live your truth, let your yes be yes and no be no, you will be able to live in the moment much more easily. Joy and peace will be yours because you will have let go of expectations and will be present with the moment. You will show up fully and enjoy the good things because your mind will be clear of what everyone else is thinking or worrying about. You will have chosen to protect your spirit from negativity and overwhelm and will have a much more peace-filled holiday because of it!

Cheers to your own personal joy and peace!!!



Monthly Manifesto: POWERFUL WOMAN

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A manifesto for powerful women.

I am a powerful woman.

I choose to stand.

I will not be weighed down by the past

I stand

I rise

I overcome.

 

I choose grace.

First for myself and then for others

I love

I give

I receive.

 

I choose ownership.

I will own my life and my calling

I will make hard choices

I can

I WILL.

 

I am a powerful woman.

I choose to stand.


What about you?

How are you stepping up this month and choosing to be a powerful woman?