Confession: I'm a Recovering People Pleaser

Hi, my name is Sarah and I'm a recovering people pleaser.


I don’t want to tell this story, it’s so embarrassing to me that this is how I used to think.


I was dating this guy that I really liked. We had actually dated previously and decided to give things another go. But I was hesitant. He had burned me before. I thought it might be best to keep my options open and also keep dating other people. I talked to him about this, and he agreed.


In my heart of hearts, I wanted this guy to be my only option. But I was scared of being hurt. I was also scared that I was making a big mistake by letting him back into my life, and that everyone would think I was being stupid.

I only told a select few people we were back together. I kept things very quiet. The secrecy was fun, but it was also a bit toxic.

As time went on, I realized he was the only person I was interested in dating. He was still dating other women and figuring things out. I decided to play it cool and patiently wait them out. Surely he would come around and see how awesome I am. Especially because I was being the “cool girl” and keeping this open thing going.

My communication was full of mixed messages. I never asked for what I wanted, which was a real relationship. When we were apart, I sulked and cried. Then when we were together I pulled a 180 to be really fun, sexy and happy. I thought I was being the perfect potential girlfriend.

Eventually he decided to pursue a relationship with one of the other women.

My behavior to try to keep him happy didn’t work, and it made me miserable. And since I hid the relationship from many of my friends out of fear of what they’d think, I didn’t have a big network to turn to when I was heartbroken.


I was isolated and quite depressed, and feeling completely foolish.

This is people pleasing at its worst.

People pleasing is learned behavior. We think by making someone else happy, we will prove our value, worth, and worthiness of love.  It’s what happens when we value other people’s opinions more than we value our own. By doing this repeatedly, you place our power outside of yourself, lose trust in yourself and your ability to keep promises with yourself. It weakens your personal strength.

For me personally it has led to discontent, anger, resentment, frustration, hopelessness, and sadness.

People pleasing is a toxic behavior. I see it most with my clients in how they show up with their romantic partner, family members and friends, and at work.

When the stakes are high - meaning, we really care about the result - it is really easy to slip into people pleasing because we think we will get the desired result. It can also be really hard to stop, because it involves not only speaking up and saying the hard thing but also changing expectations.

It might be scary to go through all that. But you are stronger than that.

  • Your voice and opinion matter. Your preferences are important.


  • Your needs matter as much as anyone else’s.


  • You have the right to your feelings, thoughts, opinions, needs and desires.


  • You have the right to express and enforce your boundaries.


  • You are important. You matter.


Communicating can feel scary, but it is a necessary part of life and relationships. Do yourself a favor, and speak your mind. 


Now it’s your turn. Where in your life are you exhibiting people-pleasing behavior? Do you have an embarrassing story to tell about making choices to try to make someone else happy? Share in the comments below!


Where is Fear Holding You Back?

I did not learn how to ride a bike as a kid. I grew up on a street with no sidewalks off of a very busy road. My neighborhood wasn’t safe for learning and most of my friends were in the same situation (but somehow they all learned to ride bikes?!). I guess I never made it that important.

I remember in 5th grade when it was bike day and everyone went outside to just ride around behind the school. Everyone took off and there I was left alone on the baseball diamond with a bike with training wheels. It was mortifying.

I never learned and always avoided it. Because learning to ride a bike as an adult is so scary. You are so aware of how far away the ground is and how fast you're moving. It feels completely out of control. And control-freak me does not like that feeling! Falling seems too scary. 

On my 31st birthday, a few friends decided I needed to learn and they had the best hill to teach me. I spent an entire afternoon terrified of falling. And you know what became even scarier than the feeling of falling? The fear of being left behind and holding everyone back from their fun. I seem like a hopeless case when it comes to bike riding! 

I hope you're laughing at my ridiculousness. Because it is. To someone that knows how to ride a bike, this level of freaking out seems just plain silly, doesn't it? Maybe you have compassion for me, but it's just riding a bike, right? It doesn't get much easier. 

And yet, I'm still scared. 

Fear is tricky. It’s not always about our safety and survival. Even though it feels that way.

Yes, we often hold back our true greatness because we are afraid of failing. We don’t know how to handle a failure or we think it will make us a loser. So we don’t take risks. We don’t test our strength. And so we never know.

We are equally afraid of our true greatness. If we show up and shine brightly, will we be outcast? We will lose love from our friends and families?

And if we share our greatness, are we going to have to be that great all the time?! Is that sustainable? Will we just be a giant let down?

Fear shows up in the ways you are playing small. The ways you are playing it safe. The ways that feel comfortable, and maybe a bit boring.

You are not here to be boring and safe. You are born with greatness already inside (it’s not anything that you need to develop, you naturally have it!) Your gifts are meant to be shared with the world. And the world may be the circle of your friends and family. It might literally be the whole world.

But you are not meant to let fear hold back your soul’s growth.

I’m getting more clarity about my soul’s purpose. And from what I can see, I am here to learn how to love myself completely. And in doing so, I hope to give you permission to do the same.

Where are you holding back? Where do you feel an inkling that maybe you have a bit more to give? It is time to listen. Take the risk and grow into who you are.

I believe in your greatness. And I believe in you.

xoxo

Sarah

PS. Calling all those who are ready to stop playing small! Do you want more out of life? More love, more laughter, more soul-level satisfaction? I am currently taking private clients for my three month coaching program! In three months I help transform your habits and thoughts so that you can tap into the rocket fuel you need to move towards the life of your dreams. If your soul is tugging at your heart and telling you there is more out there, let’s talk. Hit reply and ask me your questions or schedule a free call with me. Book your call right here.

8 Tips for Confidence Better Than "Fake It Till You Make It"

I remember when I was going on a lot of first dates. (And I mean, A LOT) I heard the advice “fake it till you make it,” and I thought it made sense. I wasn't feeling confident, so I just faked it. 


I tried really hard to impress my date with my funniest stories and I hid the stuff that I thought was too messy. And I was rarely attracted to the other person, or I didn't get asked out on a second date. Because they never got to know the real me. 


Faking it means you try to look like everyone else. You try to fit in. And fitting in doesn't get results. Because if your date wanted everyone else they would be out with THEM.


They are out with YOU. Because they are curious about YOU. If you’re like everyone else, you’re going to get lumped in with everyone else and you will get passed over.


We are dating to find the diamond in the rough. The one person that feels like a fit for us. But that works both ways. You are the diamond in the rough for someone else, but they can't find you if you are acting like the rest of the rough. BE THE DIAMOND. 

 

I get it, sometimes it is hard to stand out. It's hard to shine bright like a diamond if you're not feeling great or confident in who you are. That lack of confidence is what leads us to fake it in the first place. 


You are already enough to be the secret sauce to attract the right person to you. You don't have to do anything different than show up in a way that feels like you're being yourself. That confidence is a magic magnet for the right people to come to you.

Instead of faking it, here is how to stand in your power, get in touch with who you really are and be confident enough to be YOU:

 

  • If you're feeling bad about yourself: Brain dump everything (especially the negative thoughts and feelings) in your brain onto a piece of paper. Burn the paper and release it.

  • If you want to feel loved: Look yourself in the mirror and say “I love and accept you.”

  • If you need an energy boost: Move your body in whatever way feels good- dance, walk, run, punch. Feel gratitude that you’re moving and breathing.

  • If you need a self-esteem boost: Ask a good friend or loved one what they like about you and what makes you unique. Do you agree? If so, repeat this to yourself. “I am someone who…” and fill in the blank with what your friend said.

  • If you're asking "How do I figure out who I am?": Notice what activities, location, and people bring out your best. When do you feel ALIVE? Do that more.

  • If you want to feel really good about yourself: What are 5 things you like about yourself? What is 1 thing you did recently that you are proud of or want to celebrate? Write them down and read them out loud!

  • If you want to have a good day: Listen to some pumping up music. Like some classic Madonna. Or maybe watch Beyonce’s Homecoming documentary on Netflix. What’s your favorite song to lift your mood?

  • If you want to tap into your inner powerPower pose. The science behind might be iffy, but it actually does help boost my mood.

You're pretty great. 

Do you have someone that needs a confidence boost? Please share this post and share the love. Maybe include a note with a few things that you really like about them. 

How Do You Let Go of "Good Enough" to Get "Great"?

The answer is simple, but it isn't always easy (which is why it's so juicy for me to talk about!)

You must let go and trust that what you want is on its way to you. 


I am still getting comfortable with trust. I learn it in layers. When I was single, going on lots of first dates and impatiently wanting to meet a guy I could fall in love with, here is how I started to lean into trusting.
 
I struggled to trust when every date was obviously wrong for me. I met great guys, but there was always something missing. Lots of first dates, very few second dates. Lots of going out and meeting people, but no one that really sparked my interest. I got frustrated by my current circumstance – single, trying really hard to meet someone. 
 
I had to make a conscious shift.
 
By conscious, I purposely want to emphasize that I was aware of making a new choice. It was not something that I could do passively or once in awhile.

I didn't have the result that I wanted. YET. I could lean into "yet" and give more focus to the future. I had to design what that future was going to look like. I couldn't give any more emphasis on what was dissatsifying to me at that moment, so I shifted to paint a clear picture of what I was moving towards in the future.

Do you believe the sun will come up tomorrow? Most people I know will say yes. They have an idea of what that will be and they trust that it will happen, even though it hasn't happened yet.

We must trust our future in a similiar way. We must know what that will look like and know that it is coming. 
 
I consciously chose my future and began to believe in it 100%. The future I wanted was a happy relationship with a loving partner. And I decided that it was going to happen for me, just as sure as the sun is going to come up tomorrow.
 
I believed with equal conviction that I was going to be in happy partnership. I couldn’t control when or with whom, but I believed it was going to happen. 
 
When I aligned with that belief, I was able to take the pressure off myself and off the people I went out with. My focus could shift to being really present. I didn’t have to worry, because I was already certain it was going to happen. 
 
It’s not always easy to believe in something you don’t see. Yet. But what if you don’t see it because you don’t believe it? 
 
There are certain things you can control with dating, such as:

  • Are you out there meeting and talking to lots of people? 

  • Do you love who you are and love your life?

  • Are you putting your best foot forward? 

  • Are you having fun?

  • Are you clear on what you want and what you absolutely do not want?


And then there are certain things you can’t control:

  • Timing

  • How and where you’re going to meet someone that is a match for you

  • How long the relationship will last

  • What the person will look like, act like, and choose to do in his/her life

 
We control what we can. We let go of the things we can’t control. 
 
When we trust that what we want is on its way to us, we begin to open up. We relax. 
 
Only after we open up, relax and surrender the things that can’t be controlled, you will begin to feel like the process is easier and much more enjoyable.
 
You have to believe it will happen before it happens. Just like you believe the sun is going to come up tomorrow. The clearer picture you can paint about what your future will look like, the more real and more certain it will feel. And you can let go in the present because you have a clear path ahead of you to move you towards what you want. 
 
Keep your focus on what you can control. 
 
This is where I spend a lot of time helping my clients. And it’s exactly why I recorded my best tips into audio lessons! As a thank you for being on my list, I want to gift you with one audio track for free. I want to give you a preview of what I’ve been working on behind the scenes and I want to help you start getting focused on what you want.  

Do you want clarity about what your future will be? Do you struggle to commit to your vision and focus on what’s possible instead of the disappointing day to day? Let’s talk. I’m looking to work with 5 women to help them get clear about what they want and create a plan of action to get it. Could it be you? Let’s talk on a free Discovery Call to find out if you’re a fit.
 

What If It's Not True?

I’m seeing a pattern of a certain problem. And that problem is a scarcity mindset. Scarcity in dating looks like this:

Women are going on dates with guys they don’t really like because they think there are no great guys out there. They go out whatever guys they meet on the apps.

And then there are other people telling me that they stay too long in relationships because they’re afraid there isn’t anything better out there. I’ve even known a few guys that stayed in relationship that was squarely in the Friend Zone because it was better than nothing.
 
This is NOT the way to get the relationship of your dreams. 
 
You’re not going to get anything if you keep going this route. Nothing but frustration and dissatisfaction. And we all know that is not what you want for your one and precious life, right?
 
What if it’s not true that…

  •  All the good ones are taken?

  •  Something is better than nothing?

  •  This is as good as it gets?

 
I think there is so much MORE available to you out there. But it won’t come your way until you let go of what isn't satisfying you. 
 
This is one of those tricky paradoxes in life. We must let go of good enough in order to get AMAZING.

Easier said than done. Have you ever been to physical therapy or a doctor and they tell you to relax? We have the opposite reaction and tense up, right?  

We all get really anxious when we’re told to let go. And if you're having that reaction when I say to let go of "good enough" you're not alone.
 
When we think we have something that we really want, something that’s really important to us, we want to hold on tightly for dear life. Like that’s the only way to keep something in our lives is by holding on. 
 
But if you hold on tightly, you’re likely to pull a Lenny (from Of Mice and Men) and crush the thing you love the most. You didn’t mean to, you just love it so much and always want it. 
 
This is what’s happening with the scarcity mindset. You want something so badly, like a relationship, that you are squeezing out the opportunities. 
 
Make a fist. Can anything get in there right now? Nope.
 
Now if you just relax your hand a little bit you can start to have some space for something to come into your hand. The more you open, the more space you have. 
 
The things we want in our life – like our perfect partner – wants space. They want to feel free just as much as you do, no one likes to be squeezed and forced. 
 
Relax. It’s coming. Let yourself open, even if it’s hard. Even if you don’t really want to because it’s different from how you’re normally behaving. 
 
Just because it's not here right now doesn't mean it isn't coming. What you want is on its way to you. The process works, but it needs time and space. 

Next week, I’m going to talk more about exactly HOW to open. There is a key ingredient to being able to execute this, and I think it needs its own blog post so I can dive deeply into the topic. Stay tuned to next week!

What challenges do you have around relaxing and letting go? Can you think of a time when you held on to something so tightly, you ruined it? Comment below and tell me your story. 

Dealing With Your Inner Bitch


Some call the mean inner voice the Inner Critic. But my recent encounter with this inner voice was nothing short of a Bitch. So, I'm calling it like it is.

We all have a mean inner voice. It’s a really nasty voice in your head saying things you would never dare say out loud to anyone. 

Things like “You suck. You’re fat and no one likes you.” “Give up now. Who would listen to you anyway?” “That Guy you like can do soooo much better than you. He’s so out of your league. Just move on. Forget it.” “You’ll never be good enough to have what you want. Why even try?”

Yeahhhhh... it’s nasty. It feels gross. It’s demoralizing. 

It makes me feel teeny tiny. Like, why am I even taking up space on this planet kind of tiny. 

My Inner Bitch has been really loud the last few weeks. I don’t know what turned up her volume, but, MAN, she has been screaming in my ear. 

I was on a date in a beautiful local garden with my boyfriend when that Inner Bitch got really pushy. Pushing all my buttons and deep-seated insecurities.

The louder she got, the worse I felt and I started shrinking. My shoulders rounded and I made my body smaller. I got really quiet and up in my head. It was drastic enough that my guy asked if I was ok? “Yeah I’m good!” I lied with a fake smile plastered on my face. I thought that the Inner Bitch would just go away.

But she kept pushing. And I had to take a time out because I could see it was sabotaging a really nice afternoon. 

I took a minute alone in my car and I had a heart to heart with that meanie. “Listen, this isn’t how we do things here. This isn’t how we talk to people. We speak kindness to each other. I know you're trying to protect me, but this isn't helping. You can either get on board with me or you can leave."

I swear to you, I had to repeat that in my head 5 times before it sunk in. But it did. 

Her volume got turned way, way down. And everything shifted. As I walked from my car to the front door where my man waited to greet me, I left a genuine big smile come across my face and I felt like I bounced down the street. 

The rest of the night was a romantic dream. No lie. 

Instead of being mean to myself and letting it crush how I was feeling, I could really focus on the moment and be present. Not in my head. But in my heart.
 

I could feel kindness and love coming from me. 

Because that's how we treat people around here.


Have you had a recent interaction with your Inner Bitch? Tell me about hit. Hit reply and tell me about what she says to you, and how do you choose to respond? Do you stand up to her or maybe you don't know how to talk to her yet. 
 

xoxo,
Sarah

PS. I am accepting new clients right now! I have spots for 5 new clients and I am looking for your help to connect me to people that are looking to make a change but don’t know HOW to do it. I can help. My passion is helping people to tap into their inner strength and power so they go get what they really want. Do you know someone ready to change? Have them check me out right here: https://bookme.name/sarahcurnoles/lite/discovery-call

Is Everybody Lonely?

I was really listening to the lyrics to Everybody's Lonely by Jukebox the Ghost

Why's every song about love or drinking too much?
Yeah, maybe that's because everybody's lonely (Yeah)
On your radio, there's another song that goes
"Babe, I'll never let you go"
Everybody's lonely, everybody's lonely

And then I thought about this quote from Esther Perel, "Loneliness is public health crisis Number One." 

I'm really passionate about confronting loneliness, because I think when it is ignored it eats away at our society in a really toxic way. 

Loneliness makes its victims want to crawl into a hole, wallow in self-pity and cry that nobody likes you. Victims of loneliness don’t reach out for help from others, and pull farther away. Just like the song, we drink too much and feel worse because it seems like everyone else is having such a great time.

Loneliness is toxic. And we are living in an age that pulls us farther apart from each other. We have faux points of connection through technology and social media, but how many real interactions are we having with each other? 

If you're feeling lonely (and if you're human, you're bound to feel it from time to time) you don't have to stay in loneliness. Loneliness is signaling you that something else is going on. 

Here are a few ideas to try:

  1. Observe your thoughts. Are you sneaking into Compare and Despair (like we discussed last week?)? Does it sound like "Everyone else has more love than me"? If so, challenge yourself to answer this question: how could that thought be false? Look for evidence in your life of the opposite.

  2. Reach out to someone you trust. Literally say this: "I'm feeling lonely right now, and I need to talk to someone." Hop on the phone or at the very least have a text conversation. We all need a sense of belonging and it helps to have at least one person in our life that can be reliable in these times. 

  3. Give yourself some nurturing. Wrap yourself tightly in a cozy blanket. Take a warm bath and drink a cup of tea. I would probably avoid alcohol at these times because it is a depressant, which may bring you down farther. Give yourself something that feels cozy and nurturing just for you. 

  4. Laugh. Watch a funny movie or your favorite stand up comedian. I like the classics, like Ellen's old stand up videos on YouTube. Laughter is literal medicine, it has been proven to decrease stress hormones and triggers endorphins.

  5. Dance out your feelings. I'm an OG Grey's Anatomy fan, and Christina and Meredith were on to something when they danced out their feelings. Pick a song that matches how your feeling and move your body to the music. Let that emotion move through your body. 


We must own our loneliness. It's a real feeling. You're not bad or wrong for feeling it. We must allow that feeling to happen without judgement and process it out. 

We as human beings need community and belonging, and we can begin to build it in small ways every day. 

Try these steps for yourself and share them with someone you love. They don't have to be feeling lonely right now, but maybe it could help them in the future. Help spread the word, let people know you are there for them. 

Sending you a big hug because we're all in this together.

Don't Compare Your Beginning to Someone Else's Middle

I had a totally different post planned for today, but this one was tugging at my heart and I had to share it. 

I recently attended a networking event hosted by a coach. I walked in the door and promptly went into a downward shame spiral.

This coach had been in business for less than a year, and had a full roster of clients. She had an adorable house in a neighborhood that I loved. She had a nice outfit and a beautiful engagement ring. 

I felt like such a loser.

I was eying her up and what she was saying and comparing it to my life. I had thoughts like "She's so successful, why can't I be like that?" "She really has it all figured out, I want to be like her." "I suck because I haven't had success like her."

Does this sound familiar? Have you done this with someone that has a job you envy? Or a relationship that you wish you had? Or a family with kids and a house?

Comparison and judging are completely natural. 

Don't feel bad for looking at someone else and saying "I want what they have."

The part of the equation that we need to stop is when we start making it mean that you're not good enough, that you don't deserve what he/she has, that you should already have it. That's the toxic part.

Those thoughts make you feel awful. I call it a Compare and Despair hangover. You've been comparing and beating yourself up, and now you feel gross. 

It's not about shaming yourself for looking different or for someone being ahead of you on the path. It's not a game where someone wins and loses because they get to a destination first. 

Your timing is perfect for you. Seeing someone ahead of you and wishing you were there is giving you a clue about what you want.

If you were walking down the street you wouldn't look at someone ahead of you and say you should be that far. No, you haven't walked that far yet. You also don't know where they're coming from, and maybe they had a different starting point.

Your path is simply that- Yours. 


Now, let's get to work.

Who has a life that you are eying up? What about their life do you want? Write it down. For example: "Angela has a great house with a cute well-behaved dog and a loving husband. She has a business that brings in lots of money and has a full calendar of appointments."

Now, take out the name of that other person and make it about you. Write it exactly the same but about yourself. "I have a great house with a cute well-behaved dog and a loving husband..." Write it as if it has already happened, and then read it back to yourself. How does that feel? Imagine that life. Bam. You just tapped into your desires. 

Doesn't it feel good to have a better idea about what you want? 

Share your desires with someone you value. Tell them what you really want. Speaking your desires is incredibly powerful and motivating. If you'd like to share them with me, I would be honored to hear them. Hit reply and send your goals my way. I will be cheering you on!

xoxo,
Sarah

The Moment I Realized I Gave Up My Dream

Picture this...

I gave myself 6 weeks to do a cross country road trip. Most of the time would be alone. All of the driving was alone with me an some audiobooks or music. Most nights were alone, with the exception of an occasional roommate at an Airbnb. 
 
All this alone time is hell for most people I know. But I was ok with it, and I was up for that challenge.
 
I was 8 days into the trip when I got to a small Montana town on the outskirts of Yellowstone. I found the world’s coziest roadside motel, decorated with the owner’s wildlife photography and photos of a bear they hired for a photoshoot. I was the only person staying there that night. 
 
When I woke up, something felt weird as I drove to Yellowstone and noticed the mountains looming. Late October in Yellowstone is really off-season and winter is coming. The place is pretty empty except for a few travelers, lots of bison and other wild animals.
 
I planned to hike so I picked up a map and the obligatory bear spray. I parked my car at an overlook and looked deep into a gorge below. I froze. I felt completely overwhelmed and like my limbs were too heavy to move. It felt like a sudden onset of depression, but I didn't know what was going on. 
 
I looked at the map. I looked down the path. I looked down the gorge at the rushing water. I was surrounded by so much natural beauty and yet I felt a deep sadness. I watched a couple stop for a photo, and then I finally had the words to identify what was happening.

I was sad because I had no one to share this experience with. 

 
Don’t get me wrong. I’m incredibly independent. I’m not afraid of being alone (except for being alone and encountering a bear.). I even love traveling alone because of all the freedom. 

But all I wanted was My Person to share it all with. Not just a friend or traveling buddy. I wanted my lobster, to quote the TV show Friends.
 
Before this, I had given up on ever finding a partner. I figured I wasn’t meant for the life that I wanted because I hadn't even come close to meeting a worthy partner. I would embrace my status as Single By Choice.
 
I abandoned my true heart’s desire because it seemed too hard. 
 
In that moment in Yellowstone I felt that changing the goal wasn’t the answer. I truly accepted that I wanted to be partnered. I wanted someone to be a witness to my life – to be my cheerleader and support when I needed it and to expand my capacity for love to a greater depth than what I could do on my own. I WANTED LOVE.
 
This wasn’t being Single By Choice. I was single because I had given up on getting what I really wanted. And what I really wanted was still tugging at my heart. 
 
The sadness that I felt that day helped me see what was really important. Sadness's job is to point out that something that you value appears to be missing. 

Don’t give up the dream because it seems hard. You don’t change the goal because it hasn’t worked out yet.

If you want love, you absolutely deserve it. I believe that 100%. If you really want a partner, you can have that partner. 
 
Never, ever, evergive up on your dream. No one else gets to tell you what your dream gets to be or how big it is. That dream was given to you because you can achieve it. It's up to you to figure out how to achieve it. It's planted as a fire in your belly and you must tend to the fire and do everything it takes to make it a reality. 

What is tugging at your heart? Don't listen to the voice that says "Yeah, but..." Right now, I just want you to listen for the little voice that is whispering "I still really want..." 

You don't need to know how you're going to get it or when it's going to happen. Right now, I just want you to listen for that voice and let it be heard. 

Comment below and tell me the thing you still really want. Say it out loud. Let me or someone that cares about you witness you.

You Are Stronger Than You Know

When I ran my first marathon back in October, there were a few times on that course I thought I was going to quit. I thought I had nothing left and that this course broke me. I thought I was stupid for even trying. 
 
I distinctly remember hitting the Mile 20 marker. I thought my running coach was going to be there cheering me on, and I couldn’t see her anywhere. I was done, that was my sign it was time to just give up. As I pondered exactly how to do this, I looked up and saw a woman holding a sign. 
 
Let me tell you this. The people on the course are angels. They have signs that make you laugh, and they are cheering you on even though they don’t know you. It’s a blessing to see strangers showing up for other strangers that are doing something really challenging.
 
This woman stood there tall, with a determined look on her face and held a sign that said, “You Are Stronger Than You Know.” And I could have cried because she was right. I had more in me. I had more strength.
 
I don’t know where it came from, but I got a second wind (let’s be honest it was probably my seventh wind). And I kept going. My coach was at mile 21, surprisingly, and I took thatas a sign to definitely keep going.
 
It’s like that Marianne Williamson quotesays that our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We are more afraid of our light than our dark. 
 
As I look back on the moments that challenged me to the breaking point, I see how often I ran from fear of pain. I was so afraid that I would have pain or suffering that I quit. I thought, I am not strong enough for this and I don’t want to feel pain so this must not be for me. 
 

In those times I never let myself see how strong I really am. 

 
I could have quit at mile 20, but I didn’t. I still ran 6.2 more miles. And I DID IT. I didn’t think I could, but I did it. Yes, I am strong than I know. 
 

I have more to give, even when it’s hard. 

 
And in hindsight, the pain I feared was not so bad. Yes, there was a little bit of pain. Yes, I it was really hard and I had to dig deep.
 
But after it was over, I felt amazing. It was pure joy and pride that stays with me even now. 
 
That is what waits on the other side of things that seem too hard. If we have the ability to hang on through a tough spot, we can reach joy. We can touch greatness. And we see what we are truly capable of.
 
Where are you feeling afraid right now? Where are you bracing yourself for pain? Where are you trying to avoid feeling uncomfortable, hurt, or disappointed? I bet there is a gem for you waiting on the other side if you just keep going.
 
Who in your life needs a reminder of their greatness? Hit forward on this email and share the inspiration. Tell them that you believe in them and you see what they are capable of. Sometimes it’s easier to see it from the outside and it helps to hear it. Be someone else’s angel holding a sign that tells them “you are stronger than you know.”