I spend so much time talking to my clients about what they feed their minds at the start and end of each day, reminding them that this will impact both their sleep and mood as they get ‘rollin. I start every day with a leadership training from my business or some other video/audio on personal development. Today, I started with Brene Brown. I never tire of listening to her. I relate to SO much to the vulnerabilities she shares. This video especially hit home. I think of how often I ALMOST kept hiding for fear of shining. I think of how often I was afraid to hit POST for fear of the critics – the vocal and the silent ones… I almost didn’t publish my book for fear of what might be said… I was terrified to grow my light and welcome in unsafe people…I LOVE how she speaks to lack of safety in this video! A TOTALLY different perspective.
I wonder where I would be today if I gave in to all of my fears? Don’t get me wrong…sometimes I did give in. Sometimes I did choose to walk away and hide. Often I beat myself up about not doing enough yet am scared to do more. Sometimes I let the invisible critics win. AND JUST SOMETIMES, I DIDN’T! It makes me so sad to think of the cruel things people wrote about Brene after some of her presentations. This is never ok. Not to mention, Brene is truly a life-changer, the definition of an influencer, so real, so vulnerable, so inspiring. It makes me sad to know people are sometimes just mean to be mean, rude to be rude, and likely completely unaware of the hurt they cause while they feel wounded in the very world they have create. It says more about them than anything, yet it is still scary and sad to know they’re out there. Then I think, WOW, I AM LUCKY! Want to know why? I AM LUCKY BECAUSE OF EACH OF YOU!
Do you know how often I get stopped in public by someone who recognizes me from my social media world? Do you know how often someone has approached me gleefully, excited to meet me because they feel they know me? They’ll joke with me, comment on things they see me doing, tell me they love my videos or that I inspire them. They’ll jokingly say “Don’t Be A Stranger” as they walk away. And my favorite…several have joked, “You’re Facebook Famous!” I was so embarrassed the first few times this happened, wanting to shrink…worrying about whether they thought me arrogant/self-absorbed…then it hit me, “Elicia! They are genuinely so excited to meet you!” I’ll be honest, I always feel awful when I don’t immediately recognize the person. Then, I remind myself, I have over 7000 people in my social media world. There’s no way I could know everyone unless they actively engage on my page or message me to make themselves known. I create content hoping to share smiles and inspiration. I regularly go live and post on my life so I’m sure many do feel they know me. I’m always excited to see folks playing in the playground I’ve created and those who wish to engage with me. I remind myself, I can’t do it all but I can do my part. The most humbling part of these real-world encounters is seriously how excited people seem to meet me. How positive and happy they seem when they walk up. I notice how much joy I feel when they approach (well, once I’m over the initial embarrassment — thank goodness I’ve trained myself to smile when confused!).
I may have done a lot of things wrong in my life, but boy am I glad I did so many things right as well that brought you all to me. Please never underestimate the power of what you can create one person-one moment-one post-one stranger mingling at a time. Be intentional with how you show up. I will forever continue to stand by my call to action that you engage with curiosity and excitement with any stranger within arms reach — for NO reason other than to connect and spread joy. You just never know how you might impact one anothers’ lives (for a moment or for a lifetime). If it weren’t for the risks I’ve taken to live daringly, so many of you wouldn’t be in my world, and my life would feel so boring.
In ending, the next time I’m scared, I’ll remind myself of the words of Theodore Roosevelt and Brene Brown’s hubby Steve: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly.” … “If you’re not in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.” I’ve often considered, if time and money didn’t matter, how would I live differently? For years I’ve said, I would travel and volunteer my life away…No coincidence how often you see me travel and post on volunteer opportunities, inviting you to join me. Play with me, volunteer with me, change the world around us with me. And if along the way you have something negative to say? Keep it to yourself. I’ll be busy changing my lil world – still scared yet daring to be great. And remember how I got there? That strange little skincare biz… What will you do to start and end your day differently today?
Have a great day my friends, and remember, Don’t Be A Stranger!