Who Are You When No One Is Watching?

Who are you when no one is watching? Trent Shelton asked this question on a recent podcast, and it gave me all of the feels. Who am I? Who am I in front of other people? Who am I when I am solely in my own company? Do I know?

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Episode 34: Who Are You When No One is Watching

Failing Imperfectly
Failing Imperfectly
Episode 34: Who Are You When No One is Watching
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I’ve heard of this concept before, but hadn’t really considered it. There is something about how it was presented in the podcast I heard about it in that made me reconsider it. Have you considered it? Do you know who you are or who you want to be when no one is watching?

I Need A New Year

2020 has been one hell of a year. Thankfully we only have a little over three months left. 2021 will bring so much that is better than this year. Life can finally get back to normal and we can put this shit show of a year behind us.

Um, no. That is not how it works.

I have heard so many variations of those three sentences over the past few weeks. So many people think that the new year will bring big change and our world will somehow just come out of this pandemic. People are assuming that 2021 will bring back life as we knew it before 2020.

I’m sorry to be the one to tell you this, but that isn’t true. That is not what 2021 will do for us. In fact, no matter what year it is, we don’t need a new year to bring about change in our life.

If you want change in your life, I mean, really truly want change, then you don’t need a new year. You don’t need a new year, a new month, or a new week. You simply need a new moment. Every single moment we breathe air on this earth is a new moment to enact change in our life.

Are you in a bad mood? Take this moment, this very moment, and make the decision that you will take a breath and change your mood. Maybe you need two breaths and two moments, but you absolutely can change your mood.

Do you want to learn something new? What are you doing right this moment? Reading this blog? Well get off whatever service you are on and go learn that thing you want to learn! If you are here because you are looking to learn tips on how to change your life, then you are in the right place. But if you want to learn to paint, or work on your car, or build that table, or learn a new language, you can make the decision in this very moment to change what you are doing and go learn that new thing.

Do you want to spend more time with your spouse, your kids, or anybody in particular? Go fucking do it!!

Seriously. I’m tired of letting life pass me by because I am not taking charge of every moment that I am living. I have been spending entirely WAY too much time watching TV every night with my husband instead of getting shit done that gets me closer to my goals. I don’t need a new year to finally start working towards those goals. I need this moment. This very moment that I’m sitting here and typing out this post. I turned off the TV and got busy writing. I found my topic that I felt passionate about and here you are reading it.

I don’t need a new year. You don’t need a new year. We get what feels like a million new moments every single day and it is our choice as to what we do with each one of those new moments. It doesn’t take much to change, it is actually really easy, but it does take change. Nothing will change if nothing changes. Nothing from this year to next year will change if you, yes you, don’t put forth the effort to enact change.

Stop waiting for a new year. Stop waiting for a new month or a new week. You keep letting new moments pass you by. Take the next moment, yes the very next moment, and get serious about the change you want in your life. Nobody can do it for you. This is all on you.

I Don’t Qualify

Have you ever muttered these words to yourself? Did you just have movie reel roll through displaying all of the times you have, or did you say no? If you said no, I would like to meet you because everybody I know has disqualified themselves at one point or another. How do I know that? Because we all say it for so many things.

I am extremely guilty of disqualifying myself before even taking a chance. I used to do it for my career. I’ve done it for this website. I’ve done it for our overlanding adventures. I do it frequently for my looks and my body size. I do it when thinking about how good of a friend I might be. Or wife. It is so much easier to say “I don’t qualify” or “I am not good enough” or “I don’t have what it takes”, than it is to put one foot out there and say “hey, I’m here and I’ve got this”.

But you know what? We are going to stay exactly where we are if we don’t take the fucking first step! As Brené Brown refers to this, it’s okay to dive into your Fucking First Time (FFT). How does a first time align with whether or not we qualify? Um, because most of the time that I have disqualified myself, it has been for something I would be doing for the first time. It is far easier to disqualify myself than it is to do something for the fucking first time.

FFTs suck!! We are more often than not going to either fail, trip over ourselves, or stumble along for a while when we do something for the first time. It is scary and intimidating. But what usually happens after that failure or stumbling period? We start to excel and then we succeed. But we can’t get to the point of success if we don’t embrace the suck first.

Stop looking to disqualify yourself.

Trent Shelton

I have spent most of my life disqualifying myself for one reason or another. I probably do it at least once a day. That sounds depressing, doesn’t it? Well, it is. Every single time I disqualify myself, I hold myself back. I tell myself that I’m not good enough. I tell myself that I don’t believe in myself. THAT, that is depressing.

I know that if I were to flip that thought every time I have it, my life would change drastically. I would improve my own impression of myself and I would be dramatically less stressed and dramatically happier. But it isn’t that easy. We can hear a quote or hear a statement and fall in love with it and know that we need to apply it to our lives, but then go about life and never actually apply it. How often do you do that? Me, I do it all of the time.

I’m finding that I have done so much personal development reading and listening and training and yet, I can’t remember it all. Why? Because I read it or hear it and then move on with life. I disqualify the importance of application.

I am here to say, I qualify. I am a badass woman and I deserve everything I want. I qualify. I qualify. I qualify. And I’m going to remind myself that every single day. I’m going to use the power of my phone wallpaper and reminders. I am setting reminders as soon as I’m done typing this to tell myself I qualify.

Are you willing to do the work and tell yourself multiple times a day that you qualify? How are you going to do it?

It’s Good For Me

One of the things I share the most here is about my struggle to live for myself and put myself first. Each and every time I write about it, I’ve learned something new or I just need to get something off of my chest. Today I was inspired by Trent Shelton. His message in the podcast I listened to stuck with me and I felt I needed to share with you my thoughts on it.

In living life to impress others or get other people to have positive opinions about me, I didn’t do what was good for me. If there was ever a chance to go back and change something in my life, I would go back to being a young girl and I would change my outlook about myself. I would be a confident, bossy girl who could give a shit less if that other kid made fun of me again. I would learn and grow instead of drinking and partying to get people to like me. But I can’t go back. I can’t rewrite my history.

What I can do is rewrite my future. I can put a fork in my road and I can do what is good for me. Making that declaration is the easy thing to do. The difficult part is actually doing it. The ability to put aside the gut emotions that I’m so used to allowing to take control over me and pushing forward knowing that whatever caused that emotion is probably not good for me. It doesn’t matter if someone is criticizing me because of a post on social media or because I am so fucking clumsy or because I know that I want more out of life than just coasting along. It does not matter. I get to determine what is good for me, not anybody else.

Another difficult thing about rewriting my future, or rather taking control of my future, is staying sane. This is a journey with lots of ups and downs, lots of times where I am blind-sided by what I am going through, lots of times that I cannot control the situation or the outcome of the situation. All of this uncertainty can be absolutely paralyzing for me. When it gets to this point, I cave and start to fall back to old habits of people pleasing and changing my chameleon colors to fit in.

What’s helped me stay sane is me doing what’s good for me. Okay, me staying true to who I am whether people like it or people don’t.

Trent Shelton

Staying true to who I am is what I am going to strive for in these situations. When something comes up that challenges me and would normally send me back to people pleasing, I will work to ask myself what the next move is and if it involves staying true to myself or not. If not, I will need to adjust my path, adjust my response, and do what is good for me regardless of whether or not the other person agrees.

This means that there will be certain people I will not ever lower my guard around for any reason. I’ve been teaching myself the boundaries to have with some people, now it is time to up my game and use those boundaries to do what is good for me.

Staying true to who I am requires me to know who I am. That is the next challenge. Do I truly know who I am without any external influences?

Embarrassed

Embarrassed. That’s how I have lived most of my life.

I’ve always been embarrassed for one reason or another. Why? Because I heard so many negative things about so many people, including me, that I was so afraid to be one of those people who prompted the negativity. I didn’t want to continue being the person people made fun of for anything and everything. I didn’t want to be the person that my parents talked so much shit about.

I tried and succeed at so many things in life, but I’ve still been embarrassed about them. Bachelors degree. Check. Embarrassed about it? You betcha. Master degree. Check. Embarrassed about it? Even more so than the bachelor degree. Being hired for a high paying job. Check. Embarrassed about it? Absofuckinglutely. Live in a beautiful house that we’ve renovated to make beautiful. Check. Embarrassed about it? Yup.

I can go on and on and on about everything I’m embarrassed about. Hell, in a lot of situations I’m even embarrassed about the quality of my marriage. Why? Why am I so embarrassed about all of these things?

Because in my parents eyes, I am too good for other people. I am the person they would incessantly talk shit about. I am living the life that my parents never could imagine actually having. They could only see it from afar and talk shit about it. When you are a young, impressionable child, that leaves a lasting impact. For me, it left a scar. For others, it determines how limited the child will become.

If I’ve been so successful so far, then why does this quote make sense to me?

Trent said this in one of his podcasts recently among a lot of other truths. This one, this one really stuck with me.

I am not more successful in my personal endeavors because I’m embarrassed about getting successful. I’m too embarrassed about what my parents would say so I hold myself back. Most people refer to what their parents would say about wearing a racy outfit or the like. My early life was spent hearing other criticisms.

So what am I going to do about it?

Put one foot forward. Remind myself that my success depends on me breaking the barriers and stigma that is so ingrained in my subconscious. I’m going to keep going. I’m going to keep posting these posts and posting my YouTube videos regardless of how few followers I have. I am going to keep working on developing my style of overlanding YouTube sharing. I am not going to give up because I am embarrassed. I am going to push through that discomfort because the only path to the success that I want is through the embarrassment and fear.

Remember my Imperfect Warriors, you already have what it takes, believe in yourself and crush
every failure on your way to your dreams. Let’s be imperfect together.

Give Your Trust Away

I’ve heard this from a couple of the mentors that I follow. Gary Vee and Trent Shelton say this over and over again. I have been doing this for most of my life without any though. It was only in the past couple of years that I started to pull back on giving my trust away. I was tired of giving it away and getting rolled over. But there is a balance that can be had. A balance that I’m learning.

You see, when you give your trust away, you are open to wherever the relationship may go. When you give your trust away, you aren’t putting arbitrary limits on relationships. When you give your trust away, you aren’t bringing baggage to a relationship from a different relationship. You are starting fresh.

When I started to hold back on giving my trust away, I was bringing hurt and baggage from previous relationships to a new one without ever giving the new one a shot. I started resurrecting walls for people I didn’t even know. I started holding more things in again. I stopped sharing as much. I withheld trust, I withheld information, I withheld love, I withheld opportunities because of the baggage I was bringing.

Each time you withhold trust from a new relationship, you are dumping your baggage into that relationship. You are making it messy before there is ever the possibility of an amazing connection.

I keep referring to relationships in this conversation about trust, because we trust is about you and someone else. It could be about a situation, but most situations involve people. Most trust baggage involves people. People create situations. People are who we either trust or don’t.

I met some of my closest friends about five years ago. I didn’t freely give my trust away. I have been guarded. It has taken me five years to start releasing baggage from other relationships and start leaning into trust with these friends. It has only been in the past few months that I’ve even shared this website or my desire to become a life coach with them. I didn’t trust them.

You know why? Because I brought baggage from other relationships into these relationships. I was afraid of what they would say, I was afraid they wouldn’t want to be my friend, I was afraid they would think I was stupid, all because of situations with other people I gave my trust away to. I gave them pieces of trust through the years, more and more each year, when I wish I had given them all of my trust in the beginning.

Withholding trust doesn’t just affect personal relationships, it affects career relationships too. It can hold you back in your career because you are withholding trust from previous situations. Your previous boss was a dick? Yeah, not going to be fully open with the new boss until I feel him/her out. Bad move. Your previous coworkers kept you at an arm’s length? Not going to get too close to any coworkers at the new place. Bad move, that wasn’t about you, it was about them. The culture at your last job was tumultuous, at best. Not going to lean into the new culture until you can feel it out. Bad move. Jump in and be yourself.

The more we hold back our trust, the more we hold back who we are, the more we limit ourselves. Stop holding back, stop guarding your trust. It’s easy to take your trust back once it has been broken. It’s not easy to remove the baggage of not trusting.

Give your trust away and you will be amazed and the relationships you can and will form. Personally and professionally.

I Need A Mentor

A Mentor

I need a mentor. You need a mentor. How the hell do I find a mentor?!

I’ve asked myself this question for years. I’ve always heard successful people talking about their mentors and how they recommend everyone having a mentor. But I didn’t know how to find one who would take me on as a mentee.

Do I just find someone that I look up to and ask? How do I know if they would be good? Who do I look up to? What kind of relationship are we supposed to have? Question after question prevented me from acquiring a mentor.

Until I learned that mentors don’t have to be people that you have a two-way conversation with. Wait, WHAT?!?!

My mind was blown when I heard Rachel Hollis explain who some of her mentors were and that she had never even talked to some of them. My mind was blown. You mean that I could have mentors who have no idea I even exist? Is that really a mentor then?

Um, yes. Yes it is. And if you can’t tell, Rachel Hollis is one of my mentors. And so is Dave Hollis, Trent Shelton, Brené Brown, Andrea Owen, Rachelle Croft, and Kevin and Sarah McCuiston. I’m sure I have a few others, but these are the ones I follow the closest.

Here’s the thing, the definition of a mentor is an experienced and trusted advisor. Nowhere does the definition state that the mentor has to know who you are or call you directly.

Here is why I refer to the above list of people as my mentors:

  1. They inspire me every day
  2. They teach me new habits and skills
  3. They provide resources to help me solve my own problems
  4. They communicate in a medium that I understand and relate to

I know that not everybody will view these one-sided relationships as a mentorship, but I do. I am a different person, a better person, because of the knowledge and insight they share. Whether it be from their books or their candid posts on social media, I am becoming a better version of myself because of what they share.

All of my mentors are in the personal development or overlanding space. I don’t have any that are in the project management space and that is okay. My list of mentors has evolved over the years as I’ve grown as a person. My mentors will continue to evolve.

No matter what medium you are looking for advice in, find a mentor. They don’t have to know who you are. You still can follow their work and learn from them. Find people who will challenge you to be a better version of yourself. Find people who will inspire you.

A mentorship relationship is what you want it to be. It doesn’t have to look like mine or anybody else’s.

Who are your mentors?

If you get knocked down…

…get back up.

I was knocked down last week. I was shown the true habits of the CEO of the company I was working for. Along with countless others, I was laid off. The reasoning we were given was that the company was restructuring. No warning. Just an hour’s notice for a meeting in the office. Pretty much my entire immediate team was laid off. Only a couple people remain. Even my direct boss was affected.

I was pissed. Like “fuck you, I’m outta here,” pissed. Like shaking so hard I can barely type, pissed. I wanted to punch something. I briefly considered digging into my husband’s alcohol stash. I didn’t want to talk to people. I was pissed. Maybe a little hurt, but that feeling didn’t show up for a couple days.

But, I got back up. Right away. I literally came home, shared the details that I knew with Eddie, and sat down to update my resume and start applying. Between Friday afternoon/evening and Saturday, I had already applied to over 30 jobs. And I’m not stopping.

I’m getting back up every time my mind wants to wallow. I’m getting back up every time I hear of some move that is being made at the company. I’m getting back up.

I am not letting this layoff define me. It is my fifth layoff since we moved to Utah in 2013. I used to bawl and wonder what I did wrong. Now, I get pissed off at the person who delivers the news or makes the choice.

But here’s the thing: focusing on what happened will keep me stuck.

You read that right. If I focus on the anger and the situation that happened, I’m not going to be able to move onto the next opportunity.

“We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world.”
Buddha

I have experienced this many times in my life. As I was progressing in my career, I thought of the salary that I wanted, that I felt I deserved. I didn’t get it for a couple years, but I kept working up to it. Then I did get it. Now my mind focuses on another higher number. That’s what I’m aiming for now.

If I focus on being in a shitty mood, I’m in a shitty mood. If I focus on being in a good mood, with a good outlook, my mood starts to improve.

“The only impossibilities that exist are the ones that you create.”
Trent Shelton

I’ve experienced this before. When I didn’t think I could get a job, I didn’t. I stayed stuck. When I believed in myself, I got the job. And usually, the job that I wanted.

If you get knocked down, get back up.

No matter whether you got knocked down by losing your job, or losing a loved one, or getting in a car accident, or growing apart from a friend, or getting passed over for the promotion, you get back up.

The only way to keep going in life is to get back up. If you were to actually fall down on the sidewalk, you would get back up. So why don’t more of us get back up when we are knocked down? Because it is easier to stay down with emotions than our physical body. We can go so deep into our emotions that we don’t know how to find right-side-up anymore. I’ve been there and I’ve been trapped down in my emotions. There are so many times in my life that I used to stay knocked down that I can’t begin to sort through all of the examples.

Life will come at you hard and fast and you won’t know what hit you. Getting knocked down sucks. Sometimes it physically hurts. Sometimes it is merely our ego that was affected. No matter what was affected, changing the way we behave when we are knocked down will help us get back up.

Instead of saying “I’ll never find another job”, envision that job that you really liked the job description for at the company that you would like to see yourself at. Really envision it. Daydream about it. Put yourself in that interview and killing it. Put yourself getting the offer and accepting it. That number that you want as your benchmark salary, imagine that’s the offer that you get. Imagine you showing up for your first day. Imagine being there in six months, a year, two years.

When you create this image, your mind will focus on it. And you might not get that job today. You might get an offer elsewhere, but your thoughts were focused on getting a job. Remember what the Buddha said above? “All that we are arises with our thoughts.” Focusing your thoughts on the good, on what you want, will get you closer to your goal than sitting there and dwelling on the shitty situation that you are in.

If you think it is impossible, it is. If you think it is possible, it is.

What are you thinking?

 

 

You Don’t Need A New Year

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At one point in our life, we’ve all said it, “on January 1st, I’ll start making changes.” We might say that in December, or September, or May, or even February. We have this habit of putting off the changes we want or need to make in our life until that big date. Forget the, “I’ll start on Monday.” That is nothing compared to what we keep saying we will start on January 1st.

You know what happens? January 1st comes and goes and those changes are nowhere to be seen. It doesn’t have to just be about changes you want to make. It can be things we want to start working on. Our goals. Yes, the goals probably require changes, but we push off our goals for living in the here and now and not getting uncomfortable.

Why? Why do we do this? Because making changes or going after goals is uncomfortable. Staying exactly where we are. Staying in the pain or the shitty job or the habits we have now, that’s more comfortable than trying something new. Here’s the thing, you probably feel like you need these last few days, weeks, months to enjoy what you are thinking about giving up. You want to savor it just a little longer, then you’ll remove it from your life. Or, you don’t want to start reading those books, taking those classes, writing those posts, doing those videos, whatever, because you are afraid you are going to suck. So, you’ll wait until next year so you can learn more and start with a bang.

Guess what? I seriously just said this to one of my friends in the last week. In fact, this is exactly what I said:

“I want to be able to plan out my blog posts better, then start adding in YouTube”
“I have to get way more consistent with my time too”

Let me take you back a step. I had been thinking that for soooo long, but I kept it to myself. I didn’t want to tell anyone what I wanted to do because I didn’t want anyone to judge it. I didn’t want to hear their opinions yet. I thought all of other people’s opinions about me doing videos would be negative. But I took a small chance when we were talking about her videos. We were talking about recording YouTube videos on our phones. I opened the door by saying that I’d probably use my phone. I opened the door for her opinion. I didn’t even think about it. But you know what? Her opinion was something that I hadn’t expected.

“please tell me you’re going to do videos”

That’s what she told me. Her opinion is one that I’ve really come to value and I was afraid to mention it. For what? Why was I afraid? I have no idea. I think fear in general.

That fear is what has prompted me for months to delay starting a YouTube channel to compliment this blog until next year. I didn’t even say January 1st. I said next year. Next year is 366 days in 2020. That is a lot of year to delay my goal to.

It was so open-ended because I didn’t want to put a timeline on me getting my shit together. I didn’t want to start now because I didn’t feel confident that I even knew what my message would be. Shit, I can barely keep a consistent schedule on doing Instagram stories.

I don’t have to be consistent to begin. I don’t have to have it all figured out to start. The only thing that I need to start is sitting my ass down and doing it.

I don’t need a new year. You don’t need a new year. What do you want to change about your life? What goals do you want to reach for?

Let me tell you what I normally would say I’d start on January 1st:

  1. Ditching the unhealthy carbs that slowly crept back into my diet
  2. Walking enough each day that my hips and back feel good
  3. Drinking the green tea
  4. Doing the thought work
  5. Cutting out the spending on random Americano runs

I have implemented all of those in my life. I am using today to be healthier and reach some of my goals. Now, I just have to keep using today to start on the other goals that I have been delaying for no reason other than fear.

What are you delaying until next year? Why?