Self-love is the pathway to leadership.

In recent posts, I’ve been talking about words, the energy of them and how they trigger things for us. Naturally, these two words self-love come up often in conversations for me.  It can be misleading if you only take them at face value.  They can suggest selfishness, ego-driven or even narcissistic. I’ve talked about it a little more in an earlier article here.  I have also noticed that this can also be the case with the word, Leadership. Perhaps a common image comes up in your mind of someone who leads a team of employees in some corporate effort.  Maybe the image of someone political is how you see leadership.

I believe there is another angle to explore on both words.  That is to say how self-love or loving yourself fully, is the pathway to true leadership. Which is to say, leading your life from your inner guidance.

Do you apply leadership to yourself in running your own life?

When you look up any person in history who has or had made a great impact on the world, they always say that it was an inner knowing, an intuition that kept them on the course to achieve the life they have or had. They followed little hints and whispers along the way.

When you love who you are, you begin to know more about what YOU want but you also open up more things. Self-love opens the door towards leadership through these amazing gifts of intuition and inner guidance. They are naturally built in each of us but we ignore it. Or we may feel it from time to time but don’t ACT on it.  Which is essential in leading a life towards your desires and dreams.

Where do we stop leading and start following?

Is your thinking entangled with messages of “not good enough”, “not worthy”, “no one cares what I have to say” anything along this type of theme? Do you have trouble trusting your choices, ideas, preferences and making decisions?  These thoughts become a block to hearing your heart and inner guidance.  If you are consistently talking low about yourself to yourself then anything you wish to have in your life will fall short or not match what your heart truly desires.  Once you see what is underneath and how you think about yourself and where you are not really loving you then you can heal it.  It does take a constant practice to keep these self-loathing words or degrading thoughts at bay.  Negative Self-talk, in my opinion, cannot be negated from our lives (nor should it be the goal), but it can be quieted through a daily self-love ritual (or two).

We learned or thought we should look outside ourselves for love and acceptance.  Seeking in this way will eventually come to a dead-end and not be as fulfilling as we think it should be.  We all search for Mr./Mrs. Right.  We think that he/she will “complete” us.  Then it doesn’t because we didn’t love ourselves first.  The old adage is that you must love you first before you can love anyone else. But it’s so true for life entirely not just for finding a romantic partner.  Some try to find these things in forms of achievements: a high-paying job, the dream house, or the right car.

So what happened?  We weren’t taught to love ourselves.  To love the way we look at the world through our own eyes.  To listen to our inner guidance. To honor and really cherish our preferences and differences to others instead of comparing to see how we measure up.  We were asked to be something else.  It happened so long ago that we probably don’t remember when it happened.  It became a program.  A program to fit in society. And now, you’ve been on automatic pilot ever since. How can life be led by a follower?

Once you find love, acceptance, and validation for yourself within yourself,  you begin to feel better, confident, stronger in the knowledge that you can be anything, and then you are able to take on challenges, make strong decisions, create flow and feel vital and in charge of your life! Because You trust YOU.  These are the qualities of a leader.  Forging on from the steam of oneself.  To become the pioneer of your own destiny without a map but a guidance that is internal, not external. When you love yourself as you are then you do what you long to do being led from within, with intuition and inner guidance so strong that nothing can stop you. Your passion becomes your driving force.  You no longer compare yourself to others because there is no need.  You will be fulfilled in the knowledge that everything and anyone that enters your life, is a blessing and can only add to your happiness and help you to continue you down your path of leading the best life you could have ever dreamed.

 

 

Being voiceless is pointless! Thoughts from a former silent activist.

First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

By Martin Niemöller (1892–1984)

*source information below.

This weekend, I watched my Facebook feed blow up with the news of the Muslim Ban being signed in and that protests were in progress at JFK airport to help free unsuspecting Muslim travellers.  They were banned from entry to the US because they were from a land on the new President’s order.  WHAT!  I’m an American living on the other side of the world, looking in horror that this has happened.  My heart was comforted and tears fell when I saw those people at the gates of JFK chanting and representing who we really are!  These citizens took action.  They were so willing to do the right thing and stand up for those people locked inside the airport. That is LOVE!  That is UNITY.  It takes bravery because whenever you put your voice and actions together in a place where there are police, you might be asking for more than you bargained for!  Look at The Standing Rock’s peaceful protest.  Tear gas, raging dogs, and jail time the whole thing to protect a greedy corporation’s investment.

It got me thinking about my voice and my actions.  Where have they been all these years?  I subsequently let them die with my hope of a better place that was about equality and fairness to all.  I, too, had become complacent.  It happened when living in DC for 7 years with an administration that I absolutely did not agree with.  I learned then my voice was not “appreciated” when it came to his policies.  I realized year after year that this was happening and I couldn’t do much but vote for change. I was there when a plane flew over our heads to come crashing down on to the Pentagon.  Colleagues and friends who worked nearby in potential harm’s way. Years following the Executive decision would come to go to war.  I worked for a company that very much profited from the Iraqi war, in other words, the hunt for weapons of mass destruction.  Still, not agreeing, nor speaking or writing any politician to stop the madness, I remained silent.  I realized, we were now a country who fully handed over our good sense of thinking to FEAR.  It was always there but now we had something to point to in justification, 9-11, Osama bin Laden.  And most of us wanted to feel safe.  So… complacency won.

Here we are in a time that seems like right out of all those lovely popular dystopia books; Divergent, Hunger Games, and I see a lot of people talking about the ever popular, 1984 by George Orwell.  But I see the people coming together in beautiful ways to put an end to these awful heinous attempts to block out freedoms that many fought wars for and protested for, years before I was born. I realize now, it is time to say what I think and be brave.  It is time to stop thinking that it is too late, that I am not important or not enough to stand UP for the rights, morals and values I believe in.  If not me, then WHO?  And what happens if NO ONE does anything.  What then?

This is what the quote above speaks to so beautifully. I saw someone quote Martin Niemöller in the comments of a LIVE feed on the JFK Airport protest.  A powerful quote that is a great wake-up call to remind us, that we are them. Incidentally, I am an immigrant in another country.

When power is put in the wrong hands, WE ALL ARE VULNERABLE!  May we no longer be silent and may all our voices be heard.  

January 27 was the International day of remembrance of the Holocaust.  May we never forget.

*United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Accessed on [January 29, 2017], https://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/article.php?ModuleId=10007392

What in the HECK is a Self-Love coach?!

Some time ago, I was on a business conference call.  During this call, it occurred to me that it is not crystal clear how I work with my clients.   Inspired to educate the audience, I will deliver a series of videos and blog posts, where I tell you how this work, self-love coaching, can inspire change in my clients. Maybe you will be inspired too ;).

 

 

Interested in a bit of Self-love coaching for yourself?

Are you interested in testing self-love coaching out?  Give yourself a shot of self-love & click on the button below!  I promise I don’t bite! 🙂

3 ways to know your soul’s purpose is a calling

There is a calling, a collective one, that is looking for its’ place in this world. RIGHT. NOW. Do you feel it? I’m certainly seeing it bubbling up inside me in these last few weeks.  It makes me curious; ARE YOU BEING CALLED, too? Let me explain what I mean by this “coach-y” “new-age-y” phrase: being Called or having a Calling. The simple definition is living your life with a purpose, having a specific mission in life but also it is called your Soul’s Purpose. But how do you know if that is what is happening?  How do you know if you are being called towards it? Being called towards an issue or having a calling is a feeling first.  Typically it will feel like a sensation that is exhilarating beginning in the stomach area OR you may feel it in your chest with a pounding heart. These are two possible places where the feeling can reside in your body.  It varies for every person. The sensation is pulsating and electric.  With every day that passes, it seems to grow stronger and stronger.  The quality of this feeling is to go, go, GO!!  In other words, doing something actionable.  But what if you aren’t exactly sure WHAT it is.  When you experience this feeling it is important to notice at that very moment what you are watching, hearing or reading.  This is a clue to the very thing that is part of your calling.  Then ask a few questions:

  • What am I feeling right now?  The answer might be; anger, sad, disgusted, etc…
  • Where am I feeling this in my body?  The answer:  in my chest or stomach.
  • What needs to change to make this right?  The answer might be: Stop the _____ from continuing on in this world.

I’m breaking down a very natural process that in most cases happen in a split second.  Usually without the questions. But maybe you forgot or weren’t aware that this is a signal from your soul.  It is coming through your body to make you wake up to something you were always meant to do. That you were born to do!  This, my friend, is a calling!  Or more aptly put your soul purpose.  Like a beacon, it is calling to you to create Change of some kind in your life or, in the world. Did you notice that I didn’t add an important question in the list above? Oh, you didn’t.  Well it’s this one:

WHAT CAN I DO ABOUT THIS?

This question is the HEART of any calling.  It is about activating into motion. Some of us, don’t dare move forward because usually, the issue at hand is TOO BIG or scary for us to begin. If you believe that it is bigger than you then you are right. WHAT?!  Yes, I said it. If you feel it’s too big for you to do anything about or too scary to get started then stay home and look the other way.  I’m sure someone else will take care of it.  If what I am saying right now makes you mad and you want to fight me then that is your SOUL saying that it is not true. Your soul is saying: “I do want to fight, stand up, RAISE MY VOICE and create a movement towards change.” And to that, I say, “HELL YEAH!!!” I’m talking to you about this today because it is a journey I’ve been on for the last few years. And recently, I’ve become more aware of my soul purpose and calling. I have been hearing that soft gentle voice that usually I only hear at times of meditation or solitude, begin to grow loud.  She is growing so loud she is nearly shouting in my ear!  Things like, “You must do this!”,  “Speak up!”, and “Your {our} Time is NOW!”” are repeating constantly in my head.  I know that this is my soul’s voice, my inner guide, who will no longer be quieted. She will no longer be ignored.  I also know that this is only the beginning.  It is the beginning of taking action and being unafraid to raise awareness on this or that cause. Expressing my mission and purpose to the world and seeing it through to hopefully, fruition. It is coming out from behind the shadows and pointing to that one thing and saying,

“THIS, right here. I will no longer allow on my watch.  Starting TODAY I’m going to do everything in my power to change it.”

And do you know when most of us hear our callings the loudest?  When something significant in the world has shifted or changed in a way that can not be ignored. These last few weeks have had their impact on me as with many people around the world.  We have woken up from our slumber, our complacency, and now, as you may have noticed for yourself on the internet, we are ready to take action!  It starts with one voice.  That one voice starts talking bravely and boldly.  Then, like most callings, are matched by others who will also be called into action by a major world event. Then the calling becomes a movement.  So knowing this, it makes me wonder, who else is being called? Is it you?  And if so, how can we help each other?        

Does this sound familiar to you? Wanna talk about it more?

How anger signals your passion!

©crisspixHave you ever felt conflicted about the identity you had before you arrived here in The Netherlands and your identity now? What about your identity before kids and your identity now? For those of us who are expats and mothers, all of this is mixed up into one very confusing bundle.
In my talk at Spark! this year, I talked about my entrepreneurial journey with my business, DailyOutfit – one that is inextricably tied to my journey here to The Netherlands and my journey as a mother. When Susan attended my talk, she was specifically struck by a portion of my talk regarding my anger and guilt. She asked me to expand on that for you.


Our second year here was arguably the most difficult year of my life. My first child was diagnosed with a chronic illness that required a special school, medication, numerous doctors’ visits and a great deal of adjustments at home. I put my business, DailyOutfit, on hold. Then, my mother died totally unexpectedly of a heart attack only four days after I brought the children home for their summer holiday. Yup. It was rough.
Given the ravages of life we see every day in the newspaper, I know I am blessed that that was the most difficult year of my life. I know it could be far, far worse. But, it was still challenging – and I learned a lot. One of the biggest gifts of that year was my anger – and guilt. It sounds strange to say so, but it is true.

Anger.AngryWoman: http://alanalouisemay.com/blog/2016/1/9/the-world-needs-angry-women

The first thing I want to talk about is my anger. I was so angry at having to put my business on hold when my daughter was ill. I was pissed!!

Why was it my life that had to change? Why was it my business that had to take a hit? Why did I have to cancel my work trip when the school put my daughter on part-time? Why not my husband?
Honestly, it was a clear financial decision. I am not the breadwinner in my household. And that sucked. I have always been my husband’s equal. Even when I left my corporate life to care for our daughter, it was a calculated decision that saved us the cost of our hired help. I did the nanny’s job – and I did it better. Then, I built my business organically within three years and I started making a profit. I was paying my daughter’s school fees. It felt great!

Guilt.

I wanted to handle my daughter’s illness with grace and kindness. And I did, of course — in public.
But, I didn’t like what I saw of myself in private.GuiltyWoman When I was honest with myself, I talked about how much I had given up. I was resentful. My lovely therapist told me that guilt is appropriate when you’ve done something wrong.
In this case, I felt I had done something wrong. I had put myself above my daughter. I had put my needs and my desire to be successful above my daughter’s needs. What kind of mother does that?!

I thought many times about giving up my business. And, when the time was finally right to start my business again, I asked myself seriously – is it time to simply let this go? Is the universe telling me this is too much?
Moving Forward. It was my anger at having to cancel that work trip that made me realize – I love my business!! And it was my guilt over my anger that made me realize — I have to figure out how to handle this better!!
Because the truth is – life is not easy. You are going to go through some shit! And you need to have the bandwidth to handle it with grace. But, if you are like me, and have found your passion AND you can make a business out of it.  Well, that is worth fighting for and figuring out.I had two goals: 1. To resurrect my business and to build it so I had the time and flexibility to be a great mother to BOTH of my kids, a fun wife, a great resource to my clients. AND therefore, 2. I could be a balanced and happy person.
glamshotallisonAnger was my signifier. It signified my passion and my belief in what I was doing in my business. It signified how important it was to me. It signified how deep my purpose and commitment was (and is) to making it a success.
Guilt was my prime mover. It told me that what I was doing was not working. It clarified for me that I needed to find a better way. It encouraged me to think creatively about what I have, what I want and who I want to be – as a mother, a wife, an entrepreneur and a person.


Author Information: colorbeautyallisonAllison Hamilton-Rohe is a Personal Style Coach from New York, currently living in Leiden. She created a unique formula to help you discover your personal style. Through her company, DailyOutfit, she coaches you to define your true beauty and translate it into a personal style you can inhabit with ease. She believes everyone can feel beautiful & confident every day. To learn more about Allison, check out her site www.dailyoutfit.com or follow her on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.


Photo credits:
All photos of Allison: Cristina Stoian Portraits, http://cristinastoian.nl/
AngryWoman:  http://alanalouisemay.com/blog/2016/1/9/the-world-needs-angry-women
Guilty Woman:http://thepoetryofmaterialthings.tumblr.com/post/42163933061

a Dutch blow out!

thedutchblowout

The Dutch blow-out!

This is what happens when you ride your bike after styling your hair! I call it a Dutch blow out.

Got a photo or video that you are not so “perfect” in? Please share it with us at the #notperfect tag. 🙂 How did this start? I say more about it in this post and here is the original video from Daily Outfit that started it!  We wanna see your posts too!  Tag us or share it with us so we can see you in all your “notperfect”-ness.