Let your extra shine!
I had a client at the studio recently who asked me how she could stop being so bossy and nosy. I asked her what she meant by that. Turns out “bossy” and “nosy” really meant opinionated. She often told colleagues, “You should do this.” She told friends, “You should sell that.” Her advice was always dispensed with certainty.
I asked her why she thought she had to stop with the pointed suggestions. Turns out, her husband thought it was a bit much. And because she loves him and she knows he loves her, she took his words to heart.
Hence, her question to me: "How can I stop being a little extra?"
I asked her what her intention was in dispensing her wisdom and she said it was to encourage, motivate, and help them see what was possible. So, I asked a series of follow-up questions:
- Do you ever tell people that your friendship is conditioned on them taking your advice? No.
- Has anyone ever asked you to stop? No.
- Have you lost friends over this? No.
- Does it bother you? No.
The seed of doubt was planted by her (I believe) very well-meaning husband, but his feeling that she might be a little extra is really about him - not her. Perhaps in his past, he’s felt bossed around by someone. Perhaps he doesn’t like unsolicited advice. Or maybe her boldness makes him uncomfortable. All of that is about him and his stuff.
My advice to her was this: if it ain’t broke, don't fix it.
Had she told me that being this way made her feel inauthentic, out of integrity, or just crappy, then a change may have been in order.
If she was getting negative feedback from the targets of her actions, then a change may have been in order.
But, appeasing the whims of others is no reason to change.
What about you? Are you a little extra in some area of your life?
Has anyone ever suggested that you should “tone it down” to put others at ease? If so, I encourage you to ask yourself the questions I asked my client.
- Are your intentions nefarious?
- Does it bother you?
- Are you using your actions to manipulate others?
- Has anyone ever asked you to stop or indicated that you make them feel uncomfortable?
- Are you losing friends or loved ones over this?
Your extra is what makes you who you are. Let it shine sister!
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