When I was in my late twenties, I had absolutely no direction in my life. I was finding my world extremely hard to make sense of. You know that feeling when your brain cannot contain all the thoughts and feelings you have? Well, that.
My passion and creativity for dreaming up numerous life- changing goals were off the charts. At the time, I lacked the confidence to make any of those dreams happen. I started believing that I didn't have 'enough time' or 'enough money' to complete my dream goals, so why bother?
Oh yeah, and just when I found a spare 5p of courage to meander outside my comfort zone ( you know the 'icky' place where your heart starts racing and your palms get sweaty?), the fear monster jumped out. I recoiled back to my comfort zone, white flag in hand, waving frantically.
I knew I had to make a change. I couldn't live this life forever and what would happen to all those dreams and goals if I did? I decided to start thinking about my ever so confident role model, Gwen Stefani. What did I admire about her? Was there a way of replicating her level of confidence?
What can I say about Gwen? Well, for starters I love that she's was in a rock band! She is also authentically herself, unapologetic, free, open, honest, creative and full of love. Oh, and her fashion sense is on pointe. So how could I use those values to tackle my fear monster and be confident?
Well, you've heard the expression, 'fake it until you make it', right? That's exactly what I did. Whenever I had a decision/ fear monster I had to face, I would do three things...
- Close my eyes and imagine I was her (a little acting/ imagination goes a long way here). I would imagine what it felt like to wear her clothes, stand the way she stands, talk the way she talks, feel her level of confident etc. I would physically take three steps forward and 'become' Gwen. I would be me, however, a little more confident, more fun, more authentic.
- I would then ask the question, ''What would Gwen Stefani do in this situation?'' I would speak this answer out loud (little tip: try to do this privately. Otherwise, you may attract some strange looks on the train home).
- Listening to the answer of question two, I'd then make a plan to take action. And actually, do it! No excuses. Ms Stefani wouldn't make excuses would she?
I have absolutely loved the positive steps this confidence exercise made in my life. Thing is, the gigantic size of my dreams were never the problem. It was the minuscule size of my confidence (and courage) to tackle the fear monster that got in the way. Was I still scared? YES! I did it anyway. Just like Gwen would have done. I started small and built up to bigger goals and dreams.
Some of the experiences of using the qualities/values of Ms. Stefani have included:
- Having the courage to sing at the London Palladium
- Feeling free and having fun as a volunteer at London Zoo.
- Being authentically me by owning my successful coaching business
Role models are so important when building our confidence because the qualities they possess hold the key to our true magnetic north. They have values that we believe in and aspire to. Whilst hold the mirror up to our soul’s potential and the goodness that we have inside us now. Guiding us to be better and hold ourselves to a higher standard.
So, who is your role model? What is it about them that you admire? Remember to ask yourself, when all else fails and it seems hopeless, ''What would (insert role model) do in this situation?''.......And then get to work.