It’s no big secret that I talk and write a lot about empowering women to stand in their personal power and speak their truth. “Stop hiding and speak up because you matter,” is my everyday mantra. So what do I need to be coming out about?
The big secret is how much I don’t speak up in everyday life.
I was on a mastermind call this past Monday and I waited to be called on before I talked about my project. Why? Because it’s going so well and I’m too excited and too passionate about it lately. Really. I didn’t want to overshare?! Over Shine?! Inspire too much?!
What was that all about?
This is a very common phenomenon for women. We don’t speak up in case it makes someone else feel small. We don’t take credit because we don’t want to come across as selfish or narcissistic. We don’t complain because we’ll be seen as a bitch. As much as I try to inspire other women to speak up… I myself don’t. Not often enough.
When is it appropriate to shine?
Shining comes from the soul and overshadowing comes from the ego. I offered a lot of valuable insight and resources to my fellow masterminders on Monday. I shined. Not for the sake of wanting to be better than anyone else but for the sake of sharing what I knew in order to see their projects flourish. Overshadowing would have looked much different. Overshadowing lives in the world of comparison and better than. It would have involved monopolizing the time and, instead of offering help to others, looking for ways to use their projects for my own gain.
Coming out for the sake of what?
Today’s culture is ripe with masses of everyday people to celebrities coming out as gay, lesbian, and transgender. It is wonderful to see. I wonder, what benefits do they reap on the other side of the closet door, and how as women can we follow their lead and also benefit from daring to speak our truths in public? I make up that we are all stronger and more confident from being our true authentic selves. I also heard that Canadian Olympic swimmer Mark Tewskbury shaved 4 seconds off his swim speed after he came out to his coach as a gay man. But there’s more. There’s the source of our creative self that is freed when we live authentically. How can we create from a place of hiding? We can’t. And to me, creating is everything.
Brene Brown offers great wisdom on whom to share your truth with, and how. We are not all meant lay our souls bare for every stranger to see. And again, ask yourself, for the sake of what? We need to add context to our sharing to make it about shining and not narcissism.
What are you hiding in your closet and who can you trust to share it with? Who will you be on the other side? I’m still learning at this game of life. This week, I have learned that I will be speaking up and over shining more often.