Rachel Hollis at Women Lead Change Conference
Hey, friends, hey! I’m back! Did you miss me? I sure missed this little blog space and I’m happy to be back. I had the most amazing time in Iowa with my friends listening to the wit and wisdom of Rachel Hollis. I wanted to share a little bit about the experience today, though I don’t know if I can adequately put it all into words, I will most definitely do my best!
Rachel was speaking as part of the Women Lead Change conference in Cedar Rapids. The conference was a 48 hour event of workshops and speakers, but you could also just buy tickets to Rachel Hollis’ talk, which is what we did. And let me tell you. I have read her books. I listen to her podcast. I have watched her lives on Instagram and I’ve streamed her Made for More movie. None of that compares to hearing her speak live. Her energy is infectious and she makes the room electric and she’s also freaking hilarious. Her talk focused on a few areas – comparison, how we view ourselves, and what holds us back from perusing more for ourselves. I took notes, much of what she said was so simple and are things I’ve even heard of and thought of before, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t bare repeating. Here are just a few thoughts she shared that I jotted down.
Comparison is the death of joy. We’ve heard this before, but it is so true. If you keep comparing yourself to others, how can you possibly be happy with where you are?
Social media makes us more connected than ever before, but without a real community. And if social media makes you unhappy, you can avoid it. You can control it. If you can’t consume it with joy, you should maybe not consume it at all. You don’t have to follow everyone. You are a grownup who can make your own decisions.
We want a magic button to get that end result faster, but that’s not how it works. The things we want to achieve we need to work for and it will take time. It’s going to be hard and that makes us uncomfortable. Sometimes we choose discomfort because that’s what we know and what we’re used to and it seems easier than trying something new for fear of failure.
It’s possible we’re not afraid to fail as much as that it’s we’re afraid to have others watch us fail. But the truth is, failure is part of the road map.
Rachel also talked about negative self talks. She talked about how we all have that voice in our head who tells us we’re not “Enough” of something. We’re not smart enough, pretty enough, skinny enough, brave enough. Then she suggested visualizing what that voice in our head looks like. Does it take a physical form of some sort? Does it sound like someone specific? She suggests giving it a name and working to take control of it. Would you let a real person standing in front of you talk like that? I have named my voice Jara for reasons I won’t get into, but the point is, when those negative talks get going, we need to take control and tell that voice to shut up. So my new mantra is Shut Up Jara. Rachel cautions you aren’t going to overcome that voice in your head by one time of being fired up though, you need to reach for more every single day.
Another huge thing I took away is an exercise Rachel uses to help quell anxiety or to encourage herself to do something she calls 5-4-3-2-1. Examples she gave is being frustrated with your kids and wanting to stop yelling at them, count down from five and move your body some way – jump, dance, shake it off for 30 seconds to a minute. In doing this you are changing your emotional state by changing your physical state. It snaps you out of your thoughts and gets you focused on the task at hand. Or maybe it motivates you to get up and move – countdown from five and put my shoes on to go for a walk. Count down from five, shake it off and go have that meeting with your boss. It seems so simple, but I tell you, I already tried it once with Ollie over the weekend and it made a huge difference in how I dealt with him in a situation that was frustrating to me.
Overall it was a great extension of her books and other works in which she really encourages us to be the best version of ourselves and that we shouldn’t be afraid to reach for more. She believes we are all made for more. Our dreams can be reality. We can achieve our goals. We can do the hard things. It made me think about that 100 Dreams project I started last year. I will admit when I set out to write those dreams, I did so thinking, these things are never going to happen. I’m not brave enough to try these things, it’s all just hypothetical. But, shut up Jara, I won’t know unless I try. The first thing I’m going to do is finish that dreams list. And this time I won’t hold back.
The last thing I wrote down in my notes was “the people who judge you will not have to live with your regrets.” Well guess what? I don’t want to live with my regrets either. So I guess it’s time to fly. I don’t know where the path goes next, but I’m not afraid to start taking those steps.
It was seriously just the best 48 hours and I know my girlfriends agree. Besides seeing Rachel we had plenty of other shenanigans that would best go in a whole separate blog post, but I’ll just say my cup is full and overflowing after the time we had in Iowa. And I hope to carry that with me for a long time to come!