Breaking Through The Glass Ceiling
Glass ceiling: So it's a ceiling that you can see through but you can't go through. Right? Typically a term used in corporate America. You can see what others have but it isn't meant for you. I have a hard time with that term. It seems all the role models I look up to the glass ceiling did not apply to them. Maybe in others eyes it did and maybe it was there but they still found a way to break through. It is made of glass not steel. If you hit it hard enough it will eventually shatter.
I think of Oprah....Did anyone ever tell her she was not good enough? Did she doubt herself? Did she see a world out there and say to herself "no I can't do that". Did she have family members with crazy connections that created her success for her? Did someone just hand her a network and magazine to run and name it after her? What do you think? I'll answer this for you.....She went out there and created her life and career using her own two hands. She made that school in Africa happen. She made her network dreams come true. She created the most iconic talk show of the 20th century. Did her success start at day one on the job. Absolutely not. It took years of grinding, adapting, changing, to be who she is today.
I think about my life. I am not in the corporate world. I am certainly nowhere near where I aspire to be in my professional aspirations. I am in the mom world and trying to turn my passion of modeling, writing, and artistic photo production into a usable product. So no glass ceiling where I am. At least that is what I thought.
I did't have a glass ceiling more a glass box created by me and controlled by me. Walls I had unknowingly built around myself. I can see out in the distance all these great things and ideas but I have kept myself trapped in the safety of my familiar surroundings and routine. This box is true of restaurants I go to, vacation spots, friends I meet up with, foods I eat, topics I talk about. It is comfortable. I know what to expect which is big for someone with anxiety like me. But the question is how much have I been missing out on because I won't open the glass box door. All those dreams out there that other people are chasing. I can see but never felt it was for me to go after. It was for them. Like they hold some magic fairy dust that makes it so they can chase their goals. Like if they fail it is ok but if I fail it would be an unbearable disappointment. But why? I have lots of answers for how that grew to be acceptable to me. It is my blog "15 years later" that dives into the cancer that killed my mother and created a storm inside of me of fear and anxiety that ran my life for years. It dives into why it is so important to follow your heart. That tomorrow is not gaurentee. Whether that means to be a stay at home parent and find a way to work for yourself from home, work in a flower shop making gorgeous arrangements for other people's big occasions in life, run a company, learn to knit, run a race, lose 10 pounds, visit Paris, go to a broadway show, dye your hair a vibrant color.....whatever it is for you. That you go for it. That you don't let the excuses, other peoples opinons, and what if's control you from going after whatever it is that you want in your life.
So I asked myself what would I do if I wasn't afraid to fail? What would be a regret of mine if I got so sick that I could never try to achieve it?
I answered this question 3 months ago when I decided to try to chase down some of my own personal dreams. You know what I found out. It feels great opening that door. Seeing the things other people are doing who aren't afraid of failure and going after it myself. You see, those big jobs and those big companies they all started just like you and me. Maybe last year or 50 years ago but somebody stepped out of their glass box and decided that dreaming big didn't have to just be for those out there that are already successful and "made it". I ask you? WHY NOT ME? WHY NOT YOU? Greatness isn't just for them. Purple hair isn't just for the girl on the cover of that magazine, Martha Stewart is the only one that can throw a huge beautiful dinner. Your dream, my dream.....It is achievable for anyone willing to chase it down. Doesn't matter what your dream is. Are you willing to take steps to go after it. If I shoot for the stars and don't make it at least I can always know that I tried. That fear of mine that held me hostage for so long was the fear of failing and not being good enough. Caring too much what others thought of me. Always having an excuse for why now wasn't the right time. Sometimes I think I have lived my life in black and white. Opening that box door for me was like Dorthy landing in OZ. All of a sudden a full new spectrum of vibrant colors got discovered. The shackles I put on myself are off and I am free to chase after anything I want.
Look at Oprah. She didn't start off as a network owner or TV icon. She was out there busting her butt just like everyone else. We all know her story. Her perservance. But her show didn't start how it ended. It took time. I think myself and many others just see where people are now and don't remember the struggle that got them there. All the hurdles they had to jump over back when Oprah's salary was in the thousands not millions. How the direction of the show changed. Her message as she grew and learned in her own life evolved into something much deeper that she passed on to all her viewers. She found a greater purpose on her journey and in her life. She was real and living her truth infront of the world. She didn't make it because her parent was a famous Hollywood actor or she knew someone. She was out there grinding every single day. Finding her way. Constantly opening new doors, trying new things, changing, and growing. You know what happens to business that don't grow and adjust. They go out of business. Nobody is buying black and white TVs anymore or bag style car phones.
So I will keep dreaming and trying breaking down the glass walls I make for myself. It does seem even as I knock one down another layer of fear I was unaware of builds a wall up in the distance that I have to find a way to accept that fear and keep on moving. We will see where it takes me. I can tell you this. So far, leaving my box and sharing my blogs and photos has definitely opened up another world for me. I am happier because I ventured out. I am happier because I know there are people out there that I am impacting in a positive way. I can not even put to words how that makes me feel. The messages I have received in the last 3 months reassure me that I am on the right path as well as the feeling in my heart.
My question for you is:
What is it that you want to do if you knew you could never fail? My next question, what is keeping you from going after it? Is it your own glass box that you made for yourself?