Finding the Brave Part of Your Soul

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A close friend recently challenged me… “I’m not going to let you make excuses anymore.”

You see, I’d been hiding out again.

I let myself slip behind the scenes, back into the shadows, hidden away.

Sure, I could claim I’ve been in massive learning mode.  I have.  I’ve been behind the scenes working in some truly amazing projects and have learned so much about marketing, business and myself over the last six months or so…

I could tell you I’ve been so busy I just haven’t had time to blog because my business has kept me totally swapped.  Yeah, that’s true, too.  And keeping my word to clients by being available to deliver projects is a priority (without that, no business can exist!).

And I could say that life has kept me occupied with three homeschool kiddos and other family commitments that are top of my list (and heart).

Or I could be honest and tell you that sometimes I’m scared.  Sometimes I’ve overwhelmed.  Sometimes I’m insecure.  More often than not I ask myself if I can really do this.  I’m only me.

Then I remember three things that matter:

1.  I got into business because I cared about the example I set for my children and because I had something to prove to the world.  I’m not done yet.

2.  The same thing I tell you… that your voice matters, that there are people waiting for you to share and teach and live your purpose here… if I’m not living that in my own life every day, I’m out of integrity.  That’s not okay.

3.  I love what I do and I can’t measure myself against the “best” but only my own best.  Every day I can strive to be better than I was yesterday.  (Someone smarter than me said that first.)

So here I am again.  Searching for the brave part of my soul.

Making peace with my own imperfections and attempting to embrace the words of Mary Lambert… I don’t care if the world knows what my secrets are.

Often I feel like a little girl on her first day of preschool, only instead of worrying if I’ll get fingerpaint on my new dress, or if someone will laugh at me when I’m too shy to join in a game… I’m stepping into high heels, putting on eyeliner and nail polish, and wondering if I can get away with the glitter and pigtails I’d really like to show up in.

Yes, I’m terrified of what you’ll say if you see the real me.  I’m even more terrified that I might disappoint the people I care about and love.  But bigger than both of those fears… what if I don’t step up and do what I’m here to do?

How about you?  What are you here to do?  Who are you here to help?

I’m not going to let you make excuses anymore, either.

It’s time to write and draw and build and play and dance and live.

Who’s with me?

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24 Comments

  1. You’re at your best when you allow this kind of vulnerability into your posts. This is why you’ve built that huge following and that successful business. Your kids should be proud. Oh, and I think you’d look great in glitter and pigtails. Personally, I never really understood why women put up with makeup and high heels–and men put up with neckties. ;-)

    “It’s time to write and draw and build and play and dance and live.Who’s with me?” Definitely count ME in.

    1. Thanks, Shel. And I agree with the makeup and neckties!

      Appreciate you for being a great example of living out the cause and purpose you believe in.
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 43 Powerfully Simple Fill-in-the-Blank Blog Post Headline TemplatesMy Profile

  2. Hi Michelle,

    I’m with you!

    It’s such as relief to admit when I’m scared, imperfect, overwhelmed and uncertain. It’s only then that I free myself to let my voice and message come through. It’s also then that my readers and subscribers.

    Thanks for remaining authentic and encouraging us to do the same.
    Flora Morris Brown recently posted… 4 Ways to Thrive as an Adult if You Survived Your UpbringingMy Profile

    1. Hey Flora, it is, isn’t it? Just being honest about where we’re at is a freeing thing.

  3. Many of us feel this exact same way! It always helps if we never compare ourself to someone other than ourself, and we need to always allow others to be who they are without judgment as well. Kudos to you for knowing what you need to do. :)
    The Unexpected Medium recently posted… Beliefs About Being Dead That Are Just Dead WrongMy Profile

    1. One thing I value about when any one of us give voice to a feeling, is the not-so-surprising discovery that it’s a feeling shared by so many others.

  4. Very inspiring post, Michelle. Thank you for sharing from your heart. You are writing what many feel and giving us the courage to step up and go out in the world in a bigger way, not comparing ourselves to others, but simply being the best we can be.

    1. Hey Marianne, that’s really such an important thing to realize–we can’t compare ourselves to others, but only be the best we can be. Great to “see” you here!
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 43 Powerfully Simple Fill-in-the-Blank Blog Post Headline TemplatesMy Profile

  5. Thanks for sharing such an inspirational, from-the-heart piece Michelle. I so echo the feeling scared with my dream = fear of failure and/or success? etc. – even though I got the vision/inspiration from Spirit to found an alternative choir for children/youth. It is high time I give voice to my dream so I can give kids the opportunity to have their voice heard too! ;) <3
    elly stornebrink recently posted… National Seniors DayMy Profile

    1. Hey Elly, that’s a wonderful dream. And YES – as you give voice to YOUR dream, others will be inspired to give voice to their own. Beautiful.
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 9 Rules to Blogging Almost Every DayMy Profile

  6. :-) And it’s nice to be acknowledged, too. ‘Preciate it.
    Shel Horowitz recently posted… HomeMy Profile

    1. With 14 years of history and having seen behind the scenes… I think I’m qualified to LOUDLY acknowledge you, Shel. :)
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 103 Creative Business Blog Post Idea Starters (Plus 50 Places to Find Inspiration)My Profile

  7. You know me, I’m all for dancing, writing, playing and having fun. I’m not great at drawing, but that doesn’t stop me from pulling out the crayons or colored pencils every now and again.
    Thanks for sharing your heart & soul, it’s always a beautiful things.
    HUGS
    :)
    D
    Debra Jason recently posted… A Quick Fill-in-the-Blank Copywriting QuizMy Profile

    1. We’ll draw brightly colored stick people, together, Debra! And then, you can teach me to dance!
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 9 Rules to Blogging Almost Every DayMy Profile

  8. Glad to have you back in my inbox; I’ve missed you. As I read your three things that matter I went ‘check, check, check’ …I’m IN! Thanks for sharing and happy to be on this journey together. Love and Blessings xo
    Julie Henderson recently posted… ARE YOU DELAYING SUCCESS?My Profile

    1. Hey Julie, it’s great to BE back in your inbox. I’ve missed writing and connecting. Thanks for stopping by AND for being “IN”!
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… 9 Rules to Blogging Almost Every DayMy Profile

  9. Thanks Michelle for your inspiring and honest post. I often hide from my fears, mainly that fear of not being good enough or letting people down. Sometimes it takes a really big push to get things done. Thankfully I have people in my life that believe in me and my abilities, and tell me I can do it. So I guess it is time to lighten up, play a little more, and be proud of all my imperfections and be brave enough to do the things I really want to be doing.
    Fran recently posted… Book Review: Lessons From Madame ChicMy Profile

    1. I get it, Fran. It’s NOT easy. I’ll admit… I both love and am often frustrated with those who push me. I know they’re doing it because they care about it but sometimes I just want to take the easy way out. And I’m thankful they are around to keep me from doing that for too long. Happy to know you have those people in your life, too!
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… The Surprising Words that Get Content Shared on Social MediaMy Profile

  10. You are an amazing inspiration to me Michelle. One thing I know about you is that you are brave, you have courage, even when you are scared, maybe especially when you are scared. We benefit greatly by the people in our lives who don’t allow us to make excuses, who keep us honest and keep pushing us. I’m glad you’re blogging again, I love reading your blog posts.
    Julia Neiman recently posted… Caine&#8217;s Arcade Part 2 &#8211; Sharing the Joy of ImaginationMy Profile

  11. Welcome back. Taking the first step to get back in the game is what’s important. I took my first step this month also and have relaunched my blogging and I am remember what I enjoy about it. This time around I am taking a different approach and moving forward to serving my audience. Thanks for being an inspiration and an example of how to get back up.

    Wishing you productivity and prosperity.

    Kim
    Kim recently posted… Five Friday Favorites – Great Posts to VisitMy Profile

  12. Thank you for such a wonderful and honest post. It is these types of posts that make your blog so real and make us realize that real people with real lives are behind the blogs. You honesty is refreshing and we are happy that you are back in the inbox with some amazing stuff again.
    Tawnee recently posted… Meal Planning &#8211; The Solution that Has Changed Our Budget (And a Giveaway from eMeals!!!!)My Profile

  13. I love your inspirational posts. And I do need to stand in my own power more too. I’m committed to being more committed to my why. Thanks for the kick.

    I’m here to help make marketing transparent. For the importance of entrepreneurship to be a focus of education. My passion is empowering and edifying people to demand ethical, ecological, and empathetic business practices. The world is a beautiful, opulent place of existence. If we the people focus on our behaviors and support the right systems… we will create a utopia of existence. The environment connects us all. I’m here to help those who feel frustrated and fed up with the systems of the world connect to new systems creating a better world.

  14. Michelle, I was first drawn to your posts because of your willingness to open up and show your vulnerabilities as a blogger and as a person, which in turn helps us identify with ours. Thank you so much. Debbie
    Debbie Seiling recently posted… Not Giving God the Glory…My Profile

  15. Michelle:
    Thank you for being vulnerable and transparent. I too, have been hiding. I placed myself in a deep cave; abandoned my work for months and the only way I came out was by my husband pulling me out by the hair. (just figuratively of course). Now, I that I am out of the cave; I am building things MY WAY. The way that works for me. I love your new site and am so glad you came out from hiding because I missed you!
    maureen recently posted… How Health Coaching Made Me Sicker, Fatter and MiserableMy Profile

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