Hi, this is Darla LeDoux of Aligned Entrepreneurs. I want to address a question I had today with a story. The question is how did you learn to trust yourself. I think this is a really interesting question, because it’s something I have battled with for most of my life. Friends will tell you back in the day, I couldn’t even decide what to order from a menu at lunch. Learning to trust yourself has been a huge journey. From that moment when I was 5, 6 years old and I created my first entrepreneurial venture, and my mom shamed me for it and was embarrassed of me. I thought, “Gosh, what if I’m wrong, my ideas are wrong, my thoughts are wrong.” I went to work looking for other people to approve of and validate my ideas. I did that for most of my life.
I became an engineer because my math teacher told me that’s what I should do. You’re good at math and science, be an engineer. Fast forward to that moment when I left my career to become a life coach essentially. Most people thought I was pretty crazy, but I did it. It was my first leap into following what was in my heart to do regardless of what anybody thought about it. Here’s the problem, when we’ve got that pattern going of having other people approve of us, it’s really easy to bring that right back with you into business, especially when you get stressed and you’re nervous and you’re thinking are my ideas okay, are my ideas valid. It’s really easy to look for someone outside of yourself to say, “Yes, that’s going to work. Yes, that’s perfect.
Now there are ways you can do that and healthy ways with coaching. I’m a coach. I believe in coaching, but I believe in coaching to help you own your truth rather than me telling you what’s true for you. Now here’s where the rubber meet the road for me. I was about 3 years into my business and I had a mentor at that time who said to me I was struggling. I had just moved and I was looking for a relationship. I was looking for love and I was struggling. I had a mentor say to me, “You know, you have the energy of someone who’s gay and doesn’t know it.” This was over dinner and just like thrown into the middle of this conversation we were having of big table, lots of people around, but just said to me. I sat there and I thought, “What?” He said, “I’m not saying it’s that, but it’s something like that.
My mind immediately went to work. I’m, “What else could be like that? Dear God, let it be something else,” because I grew up in a small town, population 502. I really wasn’t exposed to a lot of ideas early on in life. I was doing what I was supposed to do by looking for a man, right? That was what I was thought. This idea that maybe I should be looking for something else really was mind blowing for me. I was just really hoping it was anything else, right? Long story short, the universe kept giving me signals and that might be for another video about how the universe speaks to me. I was getting these signals that maybe there was something to this idea and that I really should check it out.
I was terrified because for 3 years, I’d been marketing myself as the person who could help you align and profit and here I was completely out of alignment, potentially in my love life, right? Here’s what I did. I called a friend and I asked for help. I immediately got on a plane. I few to Los Angeles and I gave myself a new experience. That’s the coaching that I give to people a lot of times. When you’re stuck in a pattern and you don’t know how to move through it, is you’ve got to give yourself a new experience. I gave myself an experience of what it might be like to consider dating women. Now stick with me here, this does relate to your business, right? In that instant when I kissed a girl and I liked it, tears streamed down my face. It was like this release of years of hiding and pretending, and it was undeniable.
Fast forward, I went home and I created a dating profile. I actually met the love of my life and life is good and happy. Here’s what’s really interesting. I was at a training where people were training me on how to know what my brand was, which was interesting in and of itself because I had paid people to tell me what I should be about, right? I’m at this training, shortly after I realized that I was gay and I decided I needed to tell people and I needed to get this out in the world. I wrote an article or like a note to my clients. I’ve built my business on transparency. That’s just been a core part of who I am, so I knew I had to share this.
I wrote this letter to my clients, sharing the experience and really what I’d learned about how easy it is for us to lie to ourselves and how great it is when we step into truth with a series of lessons. I was a little nervous about sending it out needless to say. I really thought I was going to go out of business, because people were going to be upset with me. I sent it to my best friend. Little nervous, but this is my best friend, right? She calls me up and she said, “You know, I read what you wrote and it’s great. It’s really well-written. I love it, but I don’t think you should send it.” I was like, “Well, why not?” She said, “Well, girl, what if you’re wrong?” In that moment she said what if you’re wrong, everything within me changed. I realized that no one was going to trust me unless I trust myself.
I realized that people in this world will have an opinion about pretty much everything. There was no way my friend could have known how I felt on the inside about this experience, right? No possible way and yet she found it was her place to give me an opinion that I could be wrong. Something about that moment was something so intimate as my own sexuality and seeing that someone could question and think I was wrong about that really made a light bulb go off. It made me on fire with this idea of trusting and believing myself. I actually spent the entire next year teaching about it. I created a believe yourself challenge. I had a believe yourself boot camp. I really worked for that entire year on supporting my clients in building that trust and faith muscle. Because honestly without that, nothing else matters.
I have to tell you in business, if I fail at something, that was my own idea, my own creation and maybe it doesn’t go that well, right? That feels so much better than any moment of succeeding following what someone else told me I should do. There’s this huge upside to trusting yourself and experiencing the consequences of your own choices that I’ve learned firsthand and I cannot recommend enough. Thank you so much for that question. That was a long story to share, really when it shifted for me and I got committed to believing and trusting myself above all else. I tell you it’s a path I highly encourage you to walk. This is Darla LeDoux of Aligned Entrepreneurs, and I look forward to being with you again soon.
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