Nobody Can Take Your Shine Away
When we are young we get told to "hush" or be quiet because "mommy or daddy is talking". In classes we are taught to follow a certain curriculum and thought pattern. And if you are a girl, you may have been brought up with certain expectations or behaviors you should follow.
What happens when all those little girls and boys that were told to "hush" grow up?
We each have a soul so deep and powerful that when used intentionally can move mountains. We each have an inner voice that yearns to speak out and be heard. Unfortunately, we also have social constructs that have limited our conscious to actually say what we feel.
I began meditating on this thought after I received feedback on my speaking skills. I was told I sounded unauthentic with my energy, I remember being told it sounded fake. I was completely shocked and confused.
Since this is the internet, you all don't know me on a personal level. But hopefully you've been around our Instagram or Facebook, and especially our private Facebook group where you can see who I am as a person. I smile when I talk, I am optimistic by nature, and my nervousness exerts itself as excitement!
I realized a few things after thinking about this interaction with my evaluator.
- You won't be everyone's cup of tea, and that's ok!
- Take feedback with a grain of salt
- Don't let anyone take your shine away
1) You won't be everyone's cup of tea, and that's ok!
Listen, if you don't care about being liked by everyone then you are a bigger person than me! (haha) It is definitely something I struggle with and have been working on because the truth is people's opinions are so diverse and contradictory of one another that you'd have to put up walls in certain parts of your life to please everyone. When I think about this I feel a heavy presence over my body- you will feel so much lighter when you allow yourself to be who you are- fully. Full of flaws but also full of light and love and the other qualities that make you, you.
2) TAKE FEEDBACK WITH A GRAIN OF SALT
Ya'll I grew up an (almost) straight A student. It was engraved in my head from as young as I can remember to get good grades. So you can assume correctly that any and every feedback I received was taken, consumed, and applied. Until recently, I had to re-learn not to do that. Why? Because nobody has all of the answers! We have to be selective about who and what we let infiltrate our minds. My suggestion? Notice who is giving you the feedback- is it a mentor? An expert in the field? A trusted friend? Someone that loves you? Even then, most times feedback is just another word for opinion. So take it with a grain of salt.
3) DON'T LET ANYONE TAKE YOUR SHINE AWAY
I will continue my story where I left off. After I received the feedback of being overly excited and not genuine I had a moment of doubt. Immediately afterwards and for a few days I contemplated how I could tone down my voice, how I could bring my emotions down because I wanted my listeners to trust me and not think I was a phony. And then WHAM- you know the feeling when you miss a step walking up down the stairs? That flutter in your heart and mental alertness that you should have had from the start?
I would NOT let anyone take MY shine away! You, my friend, just like me- may not be everyone's cup of tea, and that is OK! You may get feedback (both solicited and unsolicited) about your personality, how you look, how you act, and it's up to you how much truth you give it. But above all- please, do NOT let anyone lower your brightness.
Shine away with your energy and your optimism and your light and smile. Actually, don't just shine- FLICKER, embrace it!
Yes, I AM an optimist. Yes, I AM someone who smiles when they talk. Yes, I AM excited about 80% of things in life. YES I AM! And you are too, so whatever your light is, think back on this story and for the love of all the stars in the universe, DO NOT let anyone take your shine away.
“Your mind is a garden. Your thoughts are the seeds. The harvest can either be flowers or weeds.” — William Wordsworth