I was a really shy and quiet kid...
Always a sensitive and imaginative soul. As a little kiddo, I often lacked confidence and feared failing. I’d watch others, admiring their open expression of who they were. My big sister was a great inspiration! She was who she was - outgoing, goofy, and not afraid to show it. But for me, I’d only feel safe truly expressing myself behind closed doors where I’d put on my own dance routines, pretend I was a famous actress or sing like a rock star. But rarely was anyone ever in the audience. So I’d hide away (literally!) and essentially turn down opportunities to do new things. I just didn’t want to disappoint people I loved and risk not being GREAT.
I wish I could scoop up that little me and tell her all the AMAZING things she could do if she would just go and DO IT. I just want to tell her I believe in her! I do this now as that little voice still comes up and tells me “Maybe you shouldn’t…” or “You sure you know what you’re doing? Shouldn’t you do it THEIR way instead of YOUR way? You might not be very good at this.”
This is such a doubtful, limiting BUT powerful voice!
I have learned as an adult how to choose OVER and OVER to correct myself by saying, “Yes! I will do it my way and YES! I will take the risk!” Because I’ve learned to truly believe in myself.
It’s such a beautiful discovery to find your true and authentic self. The world needs to know this version of you!
I’ve recently been thinking about areas in my life where I feel that solid sense of confidence more often than not. One of the continual truthful answers is in...skiing. Something I absolutely LOVE doing. When I learned to ski as a child it changed me. I found this amazing adventurous sport that I was really good at. Naturally. I picked it up quickly and just had this burning desire to keep learning and to keep doing better. I finally wasn’t just the youngest, tagging along. I was leading the way!
I now live in one of the best places in the country to ski and it is an essential part of my life. This is why I so often refer to skiing and the mountains as my therapy or my church. It’s a spiritual experience that refills my soul.
Skiing reflects to me the perfect blend of ability and boundaries. Where I contain full confidence in my ability, I also contain full awareness of my boundaries. I’m not “hucking" huge cliffs or mastering the most extreme terrain. And I’m totally OK with this! It doesn’t limit my sense of my ability and it doesn’t cause me to feel insecure.
I accept the boundaries and still feel empowered!
When I’m committed to a trail, cruising through trees or in that wide open powder field, I hold a sense of wholeness. I am free to be completely as I am. I have absolute trust in MY ability. It’s soul-freeing!
Skiing also mirrors the continued learning curve of life. Accepting I’m not an absolute master and that there are continued challenges, allows me to gently push myself and continue to learn how to be better. When you state you’re a “master” I believe you’ve given up on learning. You’ve closed the door to growth. This is a time to move on and away from whatever you’ve so called “mastered.” Trust me, it isn’t feeding you anymore.
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities, in the expert's mind there are few." -Buddha
And so skiing is a metaphor for me. It teaches and reminds me how to embrace soulful confidence and to trust when I KNOW I can do something. It shows me how to remain open to possibility and to push myself rather than refuse an opportunity or to shy away from risk. It helps to remind me the absolute importance of knowing what you’re capable of and trusting your boundaries to see how you can push yourself toward continued GREATNESS.
Do you want to uncover your own greatness? I know you do! And like I said before, you are dis-serving the world when you deprive it of YOUR own greatness.