I speak and work with many amazing women — they’re smart, talented, and curious. They also feel that they are all wrong the way they are. Self-acceptance can be a bitch.
This is a feeling that hits home with me. In fact, working on it has been my biggest transformational journey.
I grew up in a home with an alcoholic mother who could not accept me for the person I was. There are many deep reasons for this, but I think the primary one is that I was a carbon copy of my grandmother, who suffered from extreme depression. I think my mother feared that was my path. That’s a guess. My mother passed away before we ever got to a place where we could have that conversation.
The reason I share that is because every day of my life, until I was about 22, in some way she told me I was wrong: I was fat, I wore the wrong clothes, I had the wrong hair, my voice was too soft (or loud, high pitched, or low pitched — she really hated my voice!). I was lazy, I was sloppy… it goes on and on.
That vision of myself stayed with me for a very long time (50 years to be exact). In fact, it still triggers me when someone comments on my appearance or voice, or any of those things. (I’m working on self-acceptance, but that stuff takes time!)
Self-Acceptance is an Inside Job
Honestly, I still don’t get much affirmation that I’m just fine the way I am. Why? Because I march to my own beat. I don’t fit in. I’m a little bit quirky, and even I don’t get my sense of humor half the time,?.
I share this because I think there are many, many women out there who experience the same thing.
Not fitting in is rough.
Or looking like you fit in when you know in your heart you know you don’t really.
It’s tough to live your happiest life possible when messages that you are fundamentally wrong bombard you every minute of every day.
So this is for every woman who feels like she is less than whatever she is supposed to be: You F-ing rock. You are so flipping cool I can barely handle it. You deserve all the good things that come your way. You are perfect exactly as you are.
Please don’t change. The world needs women like you.
Make yourself happy. Do what you want to do. And if those around you at work or home judge you for it, reach out for some support. There are a ton of us and together we are strong. If you want to work on your self-acceptance and would love some relentless support, join The Gutsy Happiness Project Facebook group… we’d be THRILLED to tell you exactly how much you rock.
I should lose weight. I should wake up earlier. I should pay my credit card bill.
Let me ask you a question: have you EVER felt good about doing something you should do?
Should is an energy zapper. It is a low-vibe, low-frequency word that does nothing to lift you up or put you in a positive frame of mind. It is really just another word for guilt or failure.
I hear the word should a lot. Heck, I use it sometimes (always before some action I am not at all interested in taking). Yet I know it’s just another word for guilt, so I recoil a bit when I hear it.
Lately, I’ve been paying attention to the word should, and how I feel when I say it or think it. I realized that few things can kill my buzz faster than the word should. It sucks any joy out of what I’m doing.
I’ve decided to use words for happy feelings because I want to live a high-vibe life — and that starts with high-vibe language and feelings.
Reframing the shoulds of life is actually very easy. It’s a simple matter of reframing the conversation. Instead of thinking I should do something, I realize I get to do those things.
I get to go to the gym and exercise my body so it stays strong.
I get to eat healthy foods that nourish me.
I get to pay bills for the necessities that make my life enjoyable (like power and water).
I get to wake up early every morning to meditate and write.
I’m tingling from the energy of those statements! I can’t wait to do ALL of them.
What about you? What shoulds in your life would bring you joy if you just reframed the thought and used more words for happy feelings?
Introverts of the world: you CAN have business success. In this video, I discuss Networking for Introverts, a subject I know well as an introvert with success in business! And if you want to learn more, book a Biz Breakthrough call and we can talk strategy for your next networking event.
When I launched my first business and started networking, I dreaded it. I saw networking as a necessary evil, but definitely an evil. I hated it. Networking for introverts simply is not the same as it is for extroverts (who are 75% of the population, by the way.
The prevailing wisdom about networking back then was that you had to work the room and talk to as many people as possible. It felt like speed dating. Especially when people who quickly decided I had nothing to offer would just walk away (I witnessed some pretty intense rudeness at those events). Most times, I would go to the event because I knew I should, but I’d end up hiding in a corner until I could leave — not a very effective tactic.
Over the years, I developed some introvert success tactics that make networking for introverts much easier, and I dare say enjoyable! It’s all about being selective. Choosing how many events you’ll do (limit them to preserve your energy), the format (making sure you don’t choose events that drain you), and who you’ll talk to (as in, not everyone there).
When I started doing these three things, my networking life changed. It was no longer a chore. In fact, I have several networking events I attend regularly now because I like them so much. I never thought I’d say that 15 years ago!
You CAN be a successful business owner as an introvert. I am proof. Us introverts in business need to stick together and help each other have success. Follow these networking tips, and you will be on the road.
Feeling energized and ready to do some networking? I’d love it if you popped down into the comments and tell me one thing you will implement at your next networking event.
Don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel to get new videos every week. And be sure to follow me on LinkedIn (@susanrose002), Facebook (@gutsyhappiness), Twitter (@GutsyHappiness) and Instagram (GutsyCoach)!
Opening a small business. Being your own boss. That’s the dream. At least it is for about 80% of the women I speak to. I get it. I’ve been a business owner for a very long time and I love it! Women ask me how to be a successful business woman in middle age.
Good question. While women are opening businesses in droves, it seems they’re all really, really young. Do you even remember being 30? I do. In fact, I opened my first business when I was 36. Boy do I wish I knew now what I knew then. I opened this coaching business at the age of 51. Fifty One. 5-1. And it has been GREAT! You know what the best thing about it is? I know things. Us middle aged women have wisdom, and that means we have the potential to rock the world. Seriously, we can change things.
So, want to know how to be a successful business woman in middle age? Learn from those who have gone before you. Be as smart as I know you are. And follow my three tips for success: find your passion, invest, and get support. I think those are the keys for launching a business that will thrive without risking your life savings. About that support part, check out my Gutsy Femeprenuer program. I designed specifically for middle age women who are ready to take control of their work life. And watch these three YouTube videos. I did a whole series on this topic just for you.
Find Your Passion
First, I want you to know that when you ask “how to start my own business,” you will get a ton of great advice. But having now started six business—some that succeeded and some that failed—I can tell you being a successful business woman in middle age starts with passion.
Think about it: you are switching careers to do this. You’ve spent your whole career doing work you may have only sort of cared about, right? Or you loved it once, but now are burnt out. Why do that again? If you are not passionate about what you are doing in your business, finding the energy to do all the little things that make a business woman successful will be downright impossible. This video provides a simple suggestion for how to get in touch with your work passion.
Having now started six business—some that succeeded and some that failed—I can tell you being a successful business woman in middle age involves a financial investment. Period.
And the amount matters. I built my graphic design agency with only a minimal financial investment (we each put in $3,000 and then had a $20,000 line of credit), but that business never really really grew. I did invest in the massage center and my coaching business and boy what a difference!
Here is the truth: building a business versus having a hobby is about investment, both financial and personal development. You WILL hit hurdles you don’t expect, and if you aren’t ready to face them head on, you’ll give up. Watch the video to learn more about the importance of investing for success.
Being a successful business woman in middle age involves asking for help and learning how to receive that help.
The truth is, you cannot do it alone. Having mentors and people to mastermind with is invaluable. They’ll share tips and tricks, they’ll help figure out challenges, and they’ll be there for you on the rollercoaster ride of entrepreneurship.
Building a business versus having a hobby is about finding passion, investment, and seeking help. You WILL hit hurdles you don’t expect, and if you aren’t ready to face them head on, you’ll give up. Watch the video to learn more about the importance of asking for help.
How will you be successful?
If you’re dreaming of starting a business, or perhaps just launched, where do you most need help? Drop down in the comments and let me know.