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Do You Trust Yourself? 3 Ways To Free Yourself From the Need for Everyone’s Approval

As of 2018, I’ve been in business for five years. That’s a half-decade of calling the shots, taking risks, and making it happen.

And in that time, I’ve shifted, pivoted, and reinvented myself multiple times. And I know there’s more of that to come.

I’ve had a lot of ups and downs. But my most significant breakthroughs didn’t happen because I did what the 7-figure online business gurus told me to do.

My most miraculous moments came when I listened to my intuition and took inspired action.

I learned that blindly doing what all the online “cool kids” told me to do left me with a watered-down message and an unease in my heart. It squelched my uniqueness and made me sound like the rest of the world. Boooring.

I clearly saw that if I wanted success on my terms, I had to trust my instincts. I had to stay in my lane and go with what felt right to me, regardless of what the “experts” said.

We all talk about “authenticity,” and “owning your truth.” But in this increasingly connected world, it’s easy to fall down a rabbit hole of “expert” advice. And lose yourself in the process.

Now, don’t get me wrong—I love constructive feedback. Fresh perspectives matter to me, and I solicit lots of advice in my creative process.

But I also recognize that if you’re having an “off” moment, too much feedback can backfire. It can send you down a spiral of self-doubt and confusion.

Tell me if any of these thoughts have crossed your mind…

What if they’re right about my idea? What if it IS too risky? Maybe I should rethink it or try something else. Or maybe I should ask a few more people what they think.

If you’ve fallen into opinion overload a time or two, I feel ya.

Other perspectives can give you insight, expand your mind, and help you make clearer choices. But when you forsake your intuition for outside opinions, you hand over your power. You end up asking permission when you should be taking charge.

But how do you tell the difference between wanting a sounding board and needing approval? When is the right moment to ask, “What do you think,” and when should you opt for, “Thanks for sharing, but I’m doing it anyway” ?

Today is about freeing yourself from approval addiction and reconnecting with your inner guidance. I’ll show you three ways to help you find the value in feedback, while also trusting your gut.

Because at the end of the day, you are alone in your choices. You have to take action and live with the outcomes. So why not own your choices from the start?

Let’s talk about three ways to appreciate other people’s feedback without asking for their permission.

Number One: KNOW Yourself.

Think about your last five decisions. Out of them, how many times did you decide on your own? And how many times did you ask anyone and everyone before moving forward?

No judgment, friends. Just notice the times when you trusted yourself, and the other moments when that trust fell short. 

Take a gut-check of your default responses. Get familiar with your personal decision-making M.O.  And then ask yourself if perhaps you need to make more empowered decisions rather than holding out for validation.

Number Two: Check Yourself. (What are you really seeking?)

If you seek approval more often than you’d like, try this: ask yourself why you’re always asking someone else.

In other words, what do you want people to say when you ask, “Is this OK?”

Tell me if either of these scenarios rings a bell.

You’re excited about a new idea, so you ask everyone what they think. But what you secretly want to hear is, “Wow, you are so smart,” or “That’s the best idea EVER!” (raises hand)

In reality, you want confirmation that your idea is worthwhile. You want someone else’s assurance you that you’re OK rather than believing it yourself.

Then, there’s the flip side.

You throw your idea out there, but you’re hoping that everyone will shoot it down.

I know. This sounds a bit crazy. Why would anyone secretly wish for rejection?

But think of it. Maybe you want to be talked out of your idea. Perhaps you’re afraid to go for it, and you’re hoping for a reason (excuse) NOT to take a chance. And when others tell you not to go for it, you’re more relieved than anything else.

So you’re either waiting to decide until everyone agrees that you’re right, or holding off until you get enough “NO” votes to stall the project.

Either way, you’re looking for answers outside of yourself.

Number Three: Trust Yourself.

Let’s say that you have THE idea. How do you know whether to jump into action right away, or ask for a little insight first?

Ask yourself these three questions prior to soliciting anyone’s opinion. They’ll help you get real with yourself before relying on a “focus group” for reassurance. They’ll help you get grounded, stand in your power, and receive feedback with a lot more grace.

Run these inquiries by yourself before you ask anybody anything. Then decide whose advice to take, and whose needs a “Thanks for sharing, but I’m going for it anyway.”

Question #1: “What do I really think about this?”

The first person to answer to is you. Before you fret about someone else’s take, consider yours first. Look in the mirror and say, “What do you think?” before looking anywhere else.

Get your own thoughts and feelings together, then consider outside input. Not the other way around.

Question #2: “Why don’t I trust myself in this situation?”

Are you hesitating more than you wish you were? More than likely, it’s just due to that old familiar companion, fear.

All you need to do is be honest about your feelings, figure out where the fear is coming from, and let it go as soon as you can.

By the way, fear doesn’t make you weak. It only makes you human! So acknowledge it, let it do its thing, and don’t push it down. Awareness is key.

BTW, you’ve managed to live this long…you can’t be a complete idiot. Right?

Question #3: “What could other people give me that I can’t give myself?”

We all filter the world through our experiences. No matter who you are, you can only see so far beyond your point of view.

This is when getting constructive feedback is big-time benefit. In this case, you’re asking for a fresh take rather than asking someone else, “Should I or shouldn’t I?”

You’re looking for perspective rather than permission. There’s a monumental difference.

Here’s the truth: no matter who thinks what, you are in charge of your life. YOU are the only one who can give the green light for the go-ahead. That means that rolling with your intuition is paramount.

Because if you trust yourself, you can do even more than make definitive decisions and take game-changing action.

You can receive constructive criticism without taking it personally. You can manage the inevitable setbacks and hiccups with grace. You can understand that failure is not the end of the road, but a “first attempt in learning.” And you’ll bounce back faster no matter what life hands you.

So if you’re afraid to jump without consulting everyone from your best friend to the checker at the grocery store, just get back to basics.

That means knowing yourself, checking your motivations, and asking yourself those three illuminating questions in Step three.

Most of all, it means trusting yourself.

You know a lot more than you think you do. How do I know that?

Because I know that you know YOU. You are the foremost authority on your life, and I bet you’re ready to start acting like it every day from here on out.

Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt paralyzed without outside approval. (my hand is still raised) Do you find it easy to trust yourself, or do you hesitate at decision time?

Leave a comment and let me know where you stand on this one, and tell me how I can support you in fully owning your awesomeness. (without asking permission)

P.S. Want to go deeper into this discussion? Join us here at the Groove Seeker’s Community where we talk about this and other topics related to living BIG in your small town!

 

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