freedomWell, today is about being BOLD, finding that something that you are hiding from and taking the steps to set it free. We each have our own genius, our own spark that is suppose to light up the world, but often we doubt, we struggle, we hide and are afraid to let the spark ignite and then shine. We are all victims of this smallness.

Yesterday I was listening to a great podcast that had Tara Mohr as the guest. She has a new book out called Playing Big. On the podcast she was sharing her personal experiences of listening to the small voices within, the fear, the part of us that just wants to keep us safe. She shared a story of being invited to be on the Today Show to share her message about her work, Playing Big. Before she went on the show she had multiple thoughts & voices in her head of comparing herself (under 5 ft tall, not model thin, millions watching, sitting next to these beautiful women who may ask tough questions). The thoughts hit her & she had to remember her own work & thank the voice for its concern and tell it she had the matter under control. She had to remind herself that her work needed to be about playing big, she had to remind herself of the millions of people watching the show & the number of people that may be inspired by the message. She had to be bold and play bigger than the little voices inside.

It was a great story about how we all have our own insecurities, we listen to the voices that keep us small, but when we begin to see that the voices are just thoughts trying to keep us safe, we can identify them, thank them and keep going into a bolder direction.

The inner critic will show up whenever we’re on the edge of playing bigger, and whenever we’re taking a new risk and stretching ourselves. And so we just need tools to deal with it.  -Tara Mohr

timthumb.phpTara shared some great quotes that will illustrate how our inner critic/fear comes up in ALL of us. It isn’t partial to the weak, to the insecure, to the strong, to the successful, etc. Here are some great examples from Tara & some I found…

Twyla Tharp, the award-winning choreographer, says her number one fear is “People will laugh at me.” -from Tara

Who could have thought that Richard Branson (Virgin) has a lifelong dread of public speaking. When he launched Virgin in the early 80s, his mentor, entrepreneur Freddie Laker, told him he had to make himself the public face of the company. “I remember thinking, ‘That’s easy for you to say,’ because I was utterly terrified,” says Branson. The Resolution: Branson relies on a slew of mind games to get him through his numerous speaking gigs. He forces himself to imagine he’s in his living room, chatting with pals. He spends weeks writing and rehearsing seemingly off-the-cuff speeches. And he relies heavily on videos and Q&A’s to shift attention elsewhere. Branson’s methods have been so successful that now he delivers speeches on—you guessed it—“The Art of Public Speaking.”  (taken from lifereimagined)  A little something more about Richard Branson– is the fourth richest person in the United Kingdom. He owns the Virgin group of brands, including a record label, an airline, and the mobile phone company. He also owns an island in the Caribbean. As a child, though, he performed poorly on tests in school and struggled with dyslexia. Teachers and authority figures assumed he wouldn’t go very far, but Branson defied the odds, and attributes his success to his people skills – proving that street smarts can take you far. (masterschannel)

Perhaps it was inevitable that beloved American institution Donnie Osmond would develop a paralyzing dread of another beloved American institution: the shopping mall. One night while starring in the musical Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Osmond had a panic attack so severe that (as he later wrote) “I honestly believed I was dying.” It was part of a pattern of social anxiety that had dogged him for most of his life. One focal point became an extreme fear of malls, where he became convinced everyone was ridiculing him. The Resolution: Osmond worked with a cognitive-behavior psychologist who showed him that many of his worries were groundless. Among his psychological exercises: buying a shirt at a shopping center, then returning it the next day—without disaster! “I survived,” Osmond said, “and even learned to laugh along with the people I always feared were laughing at me.” (taken from lifereimagined)

Gustave Eiffel, the designer of the famed Eiffel Tower, was terrified of heights.

Roger Moore (James Bond) cannot pick up a gun without uncontrollably blinking.

Walt Disney, who gave the world Mickey Mouse, was indeed, afraid of mice.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett was “terrified” of public speaking. He was so nervous, in fact, that he would arrange and choose his college classes to avoid having to get up in front of people. He even enrolled in a public speaking course and dropped out before it even started. “I lost my nerve,” he said.  At the age of 21, Buffett started his career in the securities business in Omaha and decided that to reach his full potential, he had to overcome his fear of public speaking. Buffett enrolled in a Dale Carnegie course with another thirty people who, like him, were “terrified of getting up and saying our names.” (taken from

The world famous minister, Joel Osteen, sells out places like Yankee Stadium and speaks live to 40,000 a week who visit Lakewood church every Sunday (the mega-church meets in Houston at the former Compaq Center). Osteen says the week before his first sermon in 1999 marked the worst days of his life. “I was scared to death,” he says. At the time he knew very little about speaking or preparing a message. In fact he was perfectly content to sit behind the video camera during his father’s sermons. When his father passed away, Osteen’s wife and family encouraged him to take the stage. Osteen did not overcome his fear for a long time. The conversations he heard didn’t help. “I overheard two ladies say, ‘he’s not as good as his father.’ I was already insecure and—boom—another negative label.” Words, he says, are like seeds. If you dwell on them long enough they take root and you will become what those words say you’ll become—if you let them. Osteen says negative labels—the ones people place on us and the labels we place on ourselves— prevent us from reaching our potential. (taken from forbes)

Albert Einstein–failed his college entrance exam.

Steven Spielberg was rejected 3 times by USC’s film program

Jim Carrey had to drop out of school at 15 to help support his family. His father was unemployed and the family had to start living in a van.

Jay-Z couldn’t get signed to any record labels. Yet that didn’t stop him from creating his own music powerhouse. His label would eventually turn into the insanely lucrative Roc-A-Fella Records. Here’s proof Jay-Z is on top: Forbes has estimated his net worth at $500 million, and TIME ranked him at one of their 2013 Most Influential People In The World. And he’s married to Beyoncé. (huffingtonpost)

poster-be-bold-discomfortI think that the phenomenon that people are pointing to — noticing that women often don’t see themselves as ready to take on a next bigger role, and all these issues of self-doubt — I think it’s right to shine the spotlight there, and to start to say something’s going on here, and we’re seeing too many capable women not stepping up for reasons of self-doubt. The problem, or one of the problems, I think, is that then we have framed the solution as: let’s become more confident. That’s where I would disagree. I think that self-doubt is the problem but confidence is not the antidote; the antidote is relating in a new way to our own self-doubt, and that new way has to do with hearing it, being aware of it, but not taking direction from it.  -Tara Mohr


Peace to you and your brilliance. SHINE. Play Big. Be YOU.

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