One of the hardest moments of being a parent was when I had to explain to my child that not everyone is going to like him.
It’s a fact.
And a lesson that I want him to learn now, so as he grows up he realizes that it is more important to be happy and comfortable in his own skin, rather than pleasing other people.
I will never forget the look on his face when I explained to him, “Some people just don’t like your mommy and I’m okay with that. I like me and that’s all that really matters.”
Truth be told, I lied that day and it is something that I have struggled with for forty-two years.
And for forty-two years, it has kept me from being my authentic self and speaking my point of view on many occasions.
It also kept me from rapidly moving along in my company for fear of being judged by other people.
For a long time now I have struggled with, “What will other people think?”
Oh, and let’s not forget the daily check in from, “Who am I?”
For a long time, I’ve been a hypocrite with my children; Always telling them to be who they were meant to be and to follow their dreams. Insisting that they can do anything they put their minds to. Assuring them that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks as long as they believe in themselves.
But why have my words been such a powerful tool for them, yet I have been unable to find the wisdom in myself?
Is it something that has been ingrained in me since childhood? Or is it that we have become a society full of judgment that is disabling us from living our truth without fear.
When I look at my children, I see endless possibilities. I see hope and light and the natural desire to make a huge impact on this world.
What a huge injustice to all of us to tell them otherwise.
But what about us? What about our life’s purpose? What about our dreams?
Is it possible that we have had one too many people tell us that we are not capable? To play it safe? To tow the line?
I have been blessed with people who believe in me.
I have made a conscious effort to surround myself with people who see great potential in me.
I have also cut the clutter and the drama from my life and removed the negative distractions from my energy.
And every day I move forward – one step at a time – closer to my goals.
A few months ago, I made a deal with God, and I promised him that with every opportunity that HE passed my way, I would step up to my full potential in a big way.
I have made strides, and although I have not yet crossed the finish line, I am quickly empowering myself with confidence and a will to conquer my fears.
I am accepting the challenge of becoming unpopular with my views and to know that my true purpose in life does not revolve around being liked.
In fact, I’m learning that the more people who are raising an eyebrow to me, the bigger the opportunity I have to impact my audience.
I have learned a ton from people I don’t like. Some of them have showed me amazing qualities that I now strive for – others have showed me what I do not want to be.
And what I realize now is some people choose to be miserable in their lives. Haters are going to hate and those are not the people that I want in my tribe!
The people who believe in me will always have my back and these are the same people who are on a crusade to make a difference in this world.
Imagine a world if we were all living a life to make a difference, free from judgment.
What would you do? What would you accomplish? What would you be?
Look in the mirror, deep within the depth of your soul, and give yourself permission to do it.
Let go of the fear of being judged.
We will all be glad you did!