Hi Sweet FB Friends,
Do you shy away from celebrating your victories because you’re afraid people will think you’re full of yourself? You’re not alone. It’s easy to feel awkward when you stand out and shine. “Will they accept me? Make fun of me? Think I’m a pompous jerk?” Those questions would make anyone draw inside the lines (carefully).
To fit in, we believe that it’s safer to bond over pain rather than triumph. Heck, we even outdo each other’s misery. “Oh, you think that’s bad, listen to THIS.” The more we dwell on the negative, the more negative energy we create. And the smaller we behave the smaller our world becomes.
Today I want to encourage you/us to bond over breakthroughs. Embody yourself fully. Full is fabulous. Big. Round. Ripe. Complete. Unique. Full is what the world needs. Not half empty.
Celebrate Your Success
A few months ago one of my girlfriends had a major win. She self-published a powerful book that took off overnight. Within a few days it was climbing the charts on Amazon and by the end of the week, she had landed herself a traditional book deal. That’s no small accomplishment. And it all happened because she was willing to do the work and put her courageous (and wise) self out there. The book: Jump and Your life Will Appear by Nancy Levin. When I heard the good news, I wanted to pop bubbly and take her dancing. But since Nancy lives on the west coast, and I’m a Woodstock gal, that wasn’t possible. So we did the next best thing–Skype!
Here’s the message I sent her: Do you have 5 minutes for us to brag about you?
Here’s her response: LOL! YES! THANK YOU!
We squealed, laughed, and even got teary. Most importantly, we paused and acknowledged her wonderful victory. And guess what? In that moment, I felt as special as she did. When we authentically celebrate someone else’s achievement, we win with them.
After that call, I thought long and hard about how to elevate my own energy more consistently. Giving my girlfriend the opportunity to have a good healthy brag session helped me realized that I don’t give it to myself enough. So in the spirit of walking my talk, allow me to brag (it’s not headline worthy, but it means something to me)… A couple months ago I learned how to use a wood chipper in order to help my husband clear our field. That’s huge for me, especially because I have a very active imagination. All I kept thinking about was that scene in the movie Fargo. If you saw the flick, you know exactly what I’m saying. Not pretty. Thankfully my limbs stayed attached to my body and at the end of the day, I felt like a badass, capable, sexy beast. I took pride in the sweat and dirt and I also got a terrific workout.
And that’s my brag. Wanna join me? Here’s how…
5 tips for building self-confidence with healthy bragging:
1. If you’ve been taught to put a lid on your victories, rip that sucker off. Do your own personal, invigorating end-zone dance. Bragging is just a way of showing your pride for hard work well done. If you win your personal super bowl (this can be a huge goal like launching your own business or something as simple as knitting a scarf), that’s damn exciting and share-worthy.
2. Align yourself with people who lift you up, not tear you down or want to bond through wallowing. It’s easy to get caught up in all that’s not working. But remember, manifesting our deepest desires is about having gratitude for what we have, the bravery to admit what we want, and the ability to hold optimistic space for all possibilities–even the ones we don’t have in focus. The next time your pals, co-workers or mastermind groups want to gather for a bitch fest, opt-out. You’ve got better things to do. Leave the drama to the reality TV shows and tune-in to a healthier channel.
3. Do it with class and share the stage. Granted, some people are buttholes about it. Don’t be that. This isn’t a one way conversation and you’re not the center of the universe. Let others shine as much as you do. Pass the mic, the talking stick, the unicorn saddle. Be present, hold space for the other person, and for the love of God, stop checking your cell phone and listen.
4. Stop comparing. It’s hard to honor your special brag if you’re constantly measuring against others. They’ve got their thing, you’ve got yours. There’s room for all kinds of crazy kink in the world. Rather than getting jealous, or feeling inferior, allow others’ success to remind you that everything is possible. If you feel icky, examine where it’s coming from. An old wound that needs mending? Desires that aren’t big enough? Perhaps you want what they got and you realize that you’re just not aiming high enough. Fantastic! Stretch your dreams.
5. Like attracts like—focus on the good! In her book, Mama Gena’s School of Womanly Arts, my friend Regena Thomashauer, (the Queen of teaching women how to have a healthy brag) says that “Bragging about the goodness in your life, especially your pleasurable accomplishments, unearths your desires and fans the flames of desire in other women. In talking about the good, more good can come your way.” PS. She also teaches us that women don’t brag nearly enough.
Food for thought, right? I find myself getting caught in this trap – more comfortable sharing the negative components of my life than the great parts. I’m curious as to why this is? I would personally like to hear about the highlights of a friends week rather than the bad parts (don’t get me wrong, being able to vent is important too!). I enjoy hearing about other people being successful, well, happy and fulfilled (now I’m not talking 6 gym selfies a day, but things you are genuinely proud of) . We all need the opportunity to get the not-so-great stuff life throws our way off our chest, but why not focus more on all that good stuff? These are the conversations that fill both people up with positive energy. They motivate and empower. Being able to share and celebrate is good – it’s not selfish or rude or self indulgent as long as the purpose is to share not compare. I’d like to make it a priority to celebrate what my friends have achieved and enjoy their successes as well as share my own successes. I hope I have friendships in which my friends want to brag to me about the great things that are happening all around them because that’s what friends are for.