Whenever I talk with moms about pursuing their purpose beyond motherhood, they share a few ideas of things they’re interested in exploring to help them find the fulfillment they’re after. But then, midway through the conversation, they almost always speak their truth.
I know it’s coming when they say “But I also have this kind of crazy dream…”
Women have told me they have “crazy dreams” to change the way Hollywood portrays women, to start a community center for parents in rural New York and to contribute to the food justice movement. But as soon as they share those dreams, they qualify them as absurd, unrealistic or impossible because of a little voice inside them that kills their ambition by asking, Who do you think you are?
That single question feeds off our self-doubt. It magnifies fears that we’re not enough. It makes us feel judged. It puts our focus on what we think we lack instead of our strengths.
And it’s next to impossible to pursue our dreams or make a difference doing our work in the world if we listen to that voice asking, Who do you think you are?
But that voice can be pretty loud and pretty persuasive. So you’re probably wondering what’s the alternative to letting it run the show?
To start, you need to counter that voice by recognizing your innate value and by building confidence. So sometime today, I want you to take out a blank sheet of paper, set a timer for 15 minutes and write down everything you have done in your life, everything you have created and everything you have accomplished. Do not sell yourself short or write this exercise off as silly or insignificant. Instead, for those 15 minutes, push that doubtful voice aside and write freely so you can bear witness to all that you’ve done and all that you are.
Then I want you to think about your “crazy dream” again and ask yourself if it’s so unrealistic to think you could make it happen.
Because if you look at that list you just made, you’ll see yourself through a new lens. You’ll see that you are a talented, capable woman with many accomplishments behind you and a bright future in front of you.
And if you own your worth so you can start pursuing your dream, in time you’ll prove that it wasn’t such a crazy idea after all.