Archives For fearless

“When we are fearlessly who we are, we don’t need external validation, just an opportunity to express ourselves, live fully, and serve the world.” – Arianna Huffington, Founder of the Huffington Post.

I read this quote, re-read it, paused to ponder, then compared it to another quote I stumbled upon from Aaron Levie, CEO at Box, Inc.:

“A great (company) mission will attract like-minded individuals that want to go on the same journey…Be on a mission that doesn’t suck.”

The combined essence of those two statements basically sum up how revitalized I felt following a trip I recently took for work.

I documented my leap of faith earlier this summer when I decided to finally leave my old job. I’m happy to say I’ve gone through the awkward and exciting acclimation period with a new company, new coworkers, and new mission.

I’m not sure if what I’m doing today will be the same job I’m doing 10 years down the road, but today, well today it simply feels right.

One week ago, I was sitting in a room full of marketing professionals and realized it was the first time in my professional career that I was surrounded by people who didn’t generally look or think like me. Even better…despite our variances…the notion of serving others over ourselves was a unifying belief we all held close to our hearts.

Near the end of a jam-packed multi-day session of strategy development and information sharing on how to help each other move our company forward, our group leader asked us to pause.

To close our eyes and place our hands at our sides.

To breathe deeply and imagine being in a room with family and friends.

To come to a startling realization that everyone around us in grieving deeply.

To imagine that our life has ended and we are watching our own funeral unfold before our very eyes.

To see the person we love most dearly attempt to collect themselves as they pull out a piece of paper to address the crowd.

To imagine the words we would want them to say to describe how we lived our lives.

Were we there for them? Or did we shove them behind other priorities like work, drugs, possessions, power, etc.? Did we use our life to build more than our bank account? Did we falsely assume there would always be time to not only achieve our own dreams, but also help others fulfill theirs?

This simple exercise forced me to think about my own mortality. I share it with you so that you may do the same.

Created by Heidi Woodard

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H.E.L.P.

November 1, 2012

If there’s one thing I learned while working over a decade in health insurance, it’s that you can never use enough random acronyms. So H.E.L.P. today is not a cry for assistance, but rather a declaration about Honoring Every Little Piece of one’s self.

When’s the last time you took the time to slow down and look at the person staring back at you in the mirror?

As a mom, I am constantly second guessing everything I do…every…single…second.

Did I wake up early enough to help my kids get ready or did I fall into the pattern of yelling at them to hurry up? Did I kiss my husband goodbye or choose to rattle off a laundry list of activities we need to get done instead? Did I put my best foot forward at work and feel like I contributed to the company’s goals or did I mentally wander off and struggle to remain focused? Did I call my parents to remind them how much I love them? Did I tell my friends how much they mean to me? Did I forget to schedule doctor appointments AGAIN?

I am willing to bet that everyone who reads this post can relate to the feeling of being pulled in many directions.

I can also guarantee I’m not the only one who feels a sense of guilt anytime I slow down and concentrate on only myself.

Yet this time of self-absorbency is so needed.

When you fail to recognize and cherish what you individually bring to the world, it is easy to be soaked up by the needs of others. It is not a purely selfish motive to concentrate on yourself; it is an essential practice to be the best you can be for those whom rely on you.

This idea to Honor Every Little Piece of yourself and recognize what it is that makes you YOU is not new, nor is it easy.

I made my list yesterday. I challenge you to start yours today. It may take minutes. It may take days. Trust me…you’ll be happy you did it.

My H.E.L.P. List (who I am)…

believer  animal lover  fitness enthusiast  caregiver  my dog’s best friend  leader  follower  role model  emotional  life of the party  someone who rarely parties  unbiased  loud  sleep lover  imperfect  yearning to learn  second-guesser  afraid  fearless  writer  challenge seeker easily annoyed  faithful  reliable  random  beautiful  plain  determined  hopeful  struggling goal setter  grateful  confident  strong  weak  predictable  devoted  fueled by others  dreamer

Created by Heidi Woodard