Not too long ago, I wrote a post about the power of being openly flawed. There is another side to that coin: the power of being openly amazing.
When it comes to our talents, it's easy to worry what people will think if we share them. For example, here are some things I love: writing, playing my guitar, putting outfits together, volunteering, etc. These things bring me so much joy! And naturally, I want to share that joy. I want to shout about my happiness.
That's usually when the nasty little inner voices kick in.
"You can't Instagram a picture of your outfit; it's conceited." "Don't share a video of you playing the guitar; people will think you're just looking for attention." "Ooh, you probably shouldn't share another link to your blog -- it's getting a little narcissistic." "Gosh, we all know you love service projects, but isn't it ruining it if you tell people you're doing it?" "Geez, Katie? Another Facebook status or tweet about some amusing thought you had? You should probably stop talking so much."
Side note: it took me about eleventy tries to spell narcissistic.
But it's true -- it's easy to second guess our reasons for sharing our joys and talents. It's easy to think that people will assume the wrong intent, and that it's better to keep your mouth shut and keep it to yourself.
You know what? To hades with it, I say. Why not share what you love? Why not spread your joy? Why not tell people about volunteering and serving in your community? Why not put a little inspiration and happiness and love out there?
We are afraid of letting ourselves sparkle.
My Chrissy is one of my favorite examples of kicking the "play it small" habit. Even her blog name, Let Me See You Sparkle, is all about this exact idea. Let yourself sparkle! (And if you need a whole pile of warm fuzzies, check out her Instagram @chrissydelacy because she's been on a Random Acts of Kindness spree today and it is seriously warming that little beating muscle behind my rib cage.)
Let's all take a note from her book. What is it that you're good at? What is that you love? What good have you done in the world today? Share it. Talk about it. Invite people to share in your joy. Don't be afraid of being amazing, passionate and kind-hearted. False assumptions about your motivations be hooverdammed.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." Marianne Williamson...I'm-a gonna let it shine.