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Let Go of Who You Should Be in Order to Be Who You Are

Are you worthy? Of what? Of anything. Are you worthy? If you had asked me if I didn’t feel worthy of ANYthing in my teens, 20s or even early 30s, I would have scoffed and said “Of course not!” But I look back now and wow – I sure did feel unworthy.

I remember not dating anyone other than my son’s dad who wasn’t good to me because “I’m a single Mom – who’s going to want to date a girl with a kid?”

I remember not having the courage to ask for a higher position in a company because I had not yet earned a degree, even though my qualifications and skills superseded my boss.

I remember many examples now of feeling unworthy – it’s what held me back for 6 years from being an Internet marketer. I wasn’t worthy of being a leader because I hadn’t paid my dues, I hadn’t yet earned 6 figures, I hadn’t had a mind blowing launch day for Christ’s sake!

Who was I to be calling myself a marketer?

I’ll tell you who I am – I’m Tiffany Freaking Dow, that’s who! And I finally learned to let go of who I was SUPPOSED to be in order to be who I was. This phrase is one I want to hug. It’s from a fanTASTIC TED talk. Have you heard of those? Some amazing stuff in them. I forget how I found this one but I’m going to embed it here and then write more after this…

So many of those ideas spoke to me while watching that. To have connection, you have to have authenticity! I live and breathe that.  It’s why, when some of you frown on my cursing or email me to say you’re disappointed that I went Honey Badger, I have to say, “Oh well!”

I can’t help it. I have to be ME.

Another phrase that spoke to me is having to have the willingness to do something that has no guarantees! I do that 24/7! I’m doing it now with my home and garden site. I have no idea if it’ll convert well or not – but I’m spending time and money going for it! Because to NOT go for it means to NOT possibly have success.

She says on that video to lean into your discomfort. I like that. Don’t back away from it – confront it. It really is like a rollercoaster ride to me. Sometimes you go through a day as a marketer feeling like your stomach is going to fly right out of your pie hole! Other times you’re smiling and hands raised up in the air squealing because something just happened that you didn’t expect – and it was thrilling!

She says you have to have the courage to be imperfect. I do! I flat out tell you when I screw up. I’ll kick my own ass. I’ll say “I don’t know!” Who cares if you’re perfect?

You do.

Quit it.

Vulnerability isn’t just beautiful – it’s a necessity in this industry. Every guru I ever worked for expressed his or her vulnerability to me over the phone and in emails.  Every human on this planet is vulnerable about something and if they weren’t, then they’d be robots.

This is kind of in line with that wonderful phrase, “Do it afraid – courage will come later.”

It’s not just about having the courage to act though – it’s about embracing it. LOVE this journey that you’re on – the lows AND the highs – because at east you’re on it! Not everyone has the balls to do what you’re doing.

You’re amazing for that.

So let’s raise a toast to you – letting go of who you think you should be so that as of today, you can be who you are.

Cheers!
Tiff ;)

51 Responses to “Let Go of Who You Should Be in Order to Be Who You Are”

  • Jackie says:

    I just posted about belief today too Tiffany. It is the KEY to success. You can have your “why” but until you believe, in yourself, and what you’re doing you’re not going to take action. :)

  • Cindi says:

    Hi Tiffany,

    Excellent post. I haven’t watched the video yet, I probably will tomorrow morning over coffee. What you have said here kind of reminds me of the old song lyrics: “Whether I’m right, or whether I’m wrong…I’ve got to be me. I’ve got to be me. What else can I be but who I am”.

    I’m 56 years old now. I just don’t give a rat’s behind what others think of me anymore. Life is just too damned short for crying out loud! To thine own self be true! Can I get an amen?

    Take care!

    Cindi

  • John says:

    Tiff.

    Years ago I used to sell reviews/tests of books, software, and various bits of office equipment to computer magazines and get paid quite well for them. Sometimes a magazine editor would pass on something they’d been offered for review, but usually these were things I’d gone after myself, usually with a particular magazine in mind.

    I hated using the phone, still do, but in most cases I got my review items by just ringing up and asking for them. Sometimes the answer was no, but about 80% of the time it was yes. Especially when it was an update of something they’d let me review before. I learned to just write-off the negative replies, and not be afraid to ask again later for something else.

    But sometimes I would be amazed to hear my the confidence in own voice as I was asking. I never needed to bullsh*t anyone, just “Hi, I’m John Craggs, I’m a freelance writer, and I’m ringing to ask if I could have a xxxxx for review purposes.”

    I was rarely asked to prove my credentials. Smaller items were mine to keep, more expensive ones came with a time limit for return, and some were for long term testing and then return.

    The point is that after publicly declaring myself a freelance writer a few times I truly believed it myself. I still do ;-)

    John

  • Dionne says:

    That post was so inspirational and the video moved me to tears. I feel like it was written just for me! I identified with a lot of things in there. Thanks so much for sharing that and for the massive kick in the butt.

    • Tiffany says:

      You’re welcome Dionne!

    • Satu says:

      I too loved the video and cried watching it.

      It’s weird too: I had a bad day yesterday because I shot a short video of myself and couldn’t stand posting it on Youtube because it clearly showed all my imperfections – double chin, flabby underarms and stuff like that.

      I so would like to be this perfect and polished version of myself…not the one I really am.
      But if I don’t learn to accept myself and admit my vulnerability, there’s not much I can get out of life.

  • Jeff says:

    “I’ll kick my own ass.” Ya gotta love that perspective!

  • dora says:

    this rant is priceless, LOL. I’d like to share my personal 2 phrases to uplift myself whenever I feel that “vulnerable” :
    1. Doubt is more dangerous than the inability itself, because it turns the possible into impossible
    2. Fear is like a fog, which trick your vision to think “there’s no way out”. Just walk through the fog and you’ll find out the way out is wide open there.

    Cheers! :)

  • Scott Worthington says:

    Tiffany,

    GREAT video. I love these TED talks.

    My favorite quote from this vid is “Vulnerability is the birthplace of joy, creativity, belonging and love.”

    Seems SO obvious when someone else points to it. Simple, yet profound.

    Thanks for sharing this.

    Keep on being you.

  • Beth Campbell says:

    Great post, Tiffany. That video was awesome and spoke to me on so many levels. Thanks for sharing and being such a great role model for those of us just starting our journey down the road of Internet Marketing.

  • Erik Heyl says:

    I noticed that you can get TED on your android phone and on Boxee Box. Saves time having to go to the site itself. My current fav talk is An Introverted Call to Action. I wish I knew all of this when I was in high school. Would have made things easier.

    Two points as I see it:

    Intro or extrovert, you have to be comfortable with YOU FIRST.

    And..

    Get out of your own way. Don’t think so much. I’m finally comfortable with NOT needing people around me and am still working on #2.

  • Ruth Stewart says:

    Wow thanks for putting that up Tiff! I just bought a couple of her books too. She really resonated with me.

    Thanks again,

    All the best,

    Ruth

  • Lisa Oliver says:

    I know you don’t know when you found this, but it was kismit that you posted about this today – this is what I have been looking for to help my women on my Domestic Abuse page on Facebook – the single thing that keeps DV behind closed doors is the shame that women feel when they have been abused – even though of course the shame is not theirs to wear – as a survivor myself I know how isolating that can be. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

    Lisa

  • Kym Kirk says:

    Thanks for the post Tiffany. I took the long road (about 30 years) to learn that vulnerability is the key life.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Vicki Lee says:

    … And I’ll speak up for the other side of the coin.. One of the great things about having a type-A personality? You learn how to laugh at yourself, and how to apologize– really early in life! Both skills help a lot..

  • Great Blog Post Tiff!

    I dont’ know if I told you, but… For almost 10 months, I’ve been keeping a Success Journal, which I write in EACH night before going to bed!

    The idea was inspired from a Blog Post I read by Ali Brown – http://www.alibrown.com/blog/2011/06/23/stay-grounded-and-connected-with-a-success-journal-by-ali-brown/

    I STRONGLY SUGGEST that everyone read this blog post because it is NOT what you think. I have filled up three Composition Books (a bit fancier than the black and white the kids use for school).

    In keeping with Tiff’s Blog Post about finding yourself and being who you are, I’d like to share how my nightly entries have become more than a list of successes. Boy, IF those pages could talk! ;)

    On reviewing my comments, I’d have a bundle of inspirational and honest blog posting ideas!

    As the saying goes: BE YOURSELF… EVERYONE ELSE IS TAKEN!!! IF people don’t like who you are, they can move on down the line! ;)

    Roz Fruchtman

    • Tiffany says:

      Maybe an Amazon book in your future, Roz?

      • Tiff:

        Who knows… I’ve been entertaining ideas!

        You may remember I’ve been threatening to say my peace on my personal blog, but for some reason I kept holding back. It’s been more painful not too, so maybe…

        The Success Jounal was a good start. In about 9-10 months I missed 2 times that I can remember. I DID complete them, the next day… But it’s just something that I do now.

        It’s easy to find something to write about, the fact that one made it through the day could be a success. I just had one or two in ten months that I wrote something like that – so I filled it with gratitude stuff!

        It’s a good way to get to see just how much time things take. So when you feel like you did not do anything or much, you see how much time it took to fix your computer or make a needed call and got the runaround, so one call wound up to be five or more… it all becomes clearer! Lots of good stuff in there!

        Roz

        • Tiffany says:

          I have journaled almost all my life – my Mom too. I look back on journals from like 4th grade and they’re so funny!

  • Sydney says:

    Tiff,

    I have to admit there are times I have cringed at your Honey Badger-ness but…I love the fact that you are true to yourself and to us, your readers. You have never strayed an inch from being YOU. I respect that more than anything. Someone who says “Hey this is me”…and shows consistency in all they do on a daily basis. To mean that speaks volumes.

    All I can say is Hail the Queen of Honey Badgers…you rock!

    Sydney

  • Brenda says:

    This post is so bang on Tiffany. A couple of weeks ago I told a potential business partner (and friend/neighbor) that I didn’t think the time was right for us to go into business together. I have an offline marketing business with no clients because I am not a salesperson. She is. I lost a friend over this (she needs to grow up) and I was back to square one.

    I was down but not out. I came up with a way to put myself out there (posted an article on a local news website). I got found and met with my first client at Barnes & Noble Saturday pm. I do not like to get “dressed” so I showed up with my laptop in jeans, turtleneck & sweater. We hit it off and she loves me. Her husband and her both have a slew of connections. Read: future business.

    I left the negativity behind and I am on the road to success, bumps, curves and all. I can be me and succeed. YES!!! (read: fist pumping in the air!)

    Thank you Tiffany

  • jan says:

    Awesome video, thanks Tiffany freakin’ Dow! I think part of our journey is coming to the point where we can forgive ourselves for not being perfect. This was really great.

  • Mary Kathan says:

    Wow Tiffany – this was awesome.

    Thanks a million!

  • Joanne Reid says:

    Life changing as usual!! Incredible and it is just what I needed to hear. I haven’t commented much lately because I have been struggling with this kind of concept.

    I get in a rut and then sit there because I get too afraid to move on beyond into the unknown.

    • Tiffany says:

      Joanne sometimes reaching out is just what you need! Ask for help or ideas whenever you need to – big community here of helpers ;)

  • Joanne Reid says:

    Thank you! I have been ghostwriting for years and want to move beyond that but I always seem to have a deadline and making the change to my own desired calling involves doing my own work above the usual deadline.

    I finally this year am working on my own stuff too…slowly, slowly, slowly. And I realize that it is panicking me to let go of the ghostwriting because it is my comfort zone.

    Because I am working so slowly I cannot visualize the future of my income. So for 2 months I have been hovering in between.

    I feel a paralysis and that does not make sense because things usually work out for me if I give them a chance.

    Just posting here is making things click into place. But I still feel a fear.

    I just did my first outsourcing and learned a lot from that experience. I always underestimate the time a project will take me to complete and then feel huge pressure to meet a deadline that I set myself.

    The outsource person gave me a deadline for his delivery and it was so realistic, I wondered why I did not give my clients that kind of deadline.

    Oh — yes, it is my need to be liked. What a trap. What a stupid trap.

    I raised my rates in January and that did not lose me any work. Actually it got me wonderful new clients.

    I just have to be more courageous.

    Thanks for letting me rant.
    Joanne

  • Emma Beatrice Roberts says:

    Just keep on being you, Tiff! :-)

  • Ami Yvonne says:

    Tiff,

    Just sent you an email sort-of related to this. Thank you for providing encouragement to others :).

    Ami

  • Peter Egan says:

    What do you mean when you say that people write you expressing disappointment that you went all “Honey Badger”?

    All I can say is that if you’re an LSU fan, I automatically like you more knowing that than I did previously. Geaux Tigers! And Geaux Tiffany!

    • Tiffany says:

      lol Not into sports much at all Peter. Google the Honey Badger video – it’ll show you the mindset I’m talking about :)

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