How I went from naked and embarrassed to confident and courageous (at a spa).
If you’ve been listening to my podcast for a while, you may think that I have tackled the self-doubt monster. Yes, I have tackled it, but I can still be found rolling around in the dust with the beast, pulling its hair, getting knocked around while wrestling with it. Each time I win a battle, I gain a bit more self-confidence for the next time, when the monster sneaks up on me from the dark shadows of my psyche. That nasty inner voice that tells us we aren’t good enough, smart enough, thin enough, worthy enough… you know, that voice.
Confidence is key
Nothing will hold us back from change as much as self-doubt or a lack of confidence in ourselves. The ridiculous truth is that you choose to believe in your own inabilities to make changes in your life. Some of us try to forget or ignore or delay our dreams because we don’t want to go through the agonizing debate with ourselves of “Can I really do this?”
As your personal midlife guide, I have been researching this topic of change and confidence, or more truthfully, pivots and self-doubt. Yesterday I invested my time and money in an online class that blew me away. The speaker, Mel Robbins (watch her TED Talk) was recommended by a respected future guest on the podcast, so I started googling her name. I found my way to an online class she offers and I jumped in. Wow! Personal game-changer.
Robe off. Shoulders back.
Before I tell you about the course, I want to share a story with you that is filled with my own fears of judgment and how I moved through it. In just one moment I used the tools I needed to embody self-confidence. Notice I did not say being confident, just appearing that way. This story happened ten years ago, but after taking the course, I see how key it was to my own personal development and how I can repeat the victory over self-doubt.
A day at the spa…
I was invited to be a guest for a full day of spa services at a beautiful destination spa resort. This is one of the perks of being in media; you are invited to businesses in hopes of, or in exchange for sponsorship, that you will say nice things about your experience or give them your endorsement or testimonial. Of course, I jumped at this invitation!
My visit began with the spa director taking me on a personal tour of the entire spa while explaining their dedication to providing the environment and experience of a European vs. typical American spa. One of our stops was into the Aqua Room which had a huge 20- person Jacuzzi type spa/hot tub, also a sauna, and a cool water shower. This area of the spa was empty at the time and he informed me that Europeans find it insane to wear a bathing suit while indulging in this trifecta of aqua indulgences. In this area of the spa, nudity was strongly encouraged. He showed me where I could find a hook for my fluffy white spa robe which I would find in the most luxurious locker room I have ever visited.
Well, okay. I had an hour before my first service would begin, so I put away my things in my cherry wood “locker” closet, including the bathing suit I had planned on wearing. Donning my spa robe and slippers, I made my way to the Aqua Room, where I was met by a group of five much younger, much slimmer, much firmer women in the hot tub. They were all wearing bathing suits. Sigh.
What’s a girl to do? I was terrified. The director had been clear that he invited me to have the experience of their facility as they felt was superior. My fear of doing something different, of standing out, of literally showing myself fully naked to these women made me want to run back to the locker room and put my bathing suit on. But I did not do that.
Speed is key
I made a very fast, no going back decision, and shed the robe to the hook. If I was going to be au natural, I was not going to slink or slouch or cover my lady parts as I walked the 20 feet from the robe hook to the spa tub. This would be my first of many shoulders back moments. I descended the stairs into the water with my shoulders set back, my chest high and my chin up. I glanced at my spa-mates and gave them a full-voiced “Hello ladies” as I walked through the water and settled into a bubbling spot up against the wall just opposite them.
They were aghast and speechless. I smiled. They returned to their small talk for about 10 seconds and then spontaneously and unanimously realized they needed to get to their other spa services. “Goodbye ladies”.
You can change your story
This story, unbeknownst to me at the time, perfectly demonstrates just three of the dozens, seriously dozens, of life-changing lessons in Mel Robbin’s online class: “How To Break The Habit Of Self Doubt And Build Real Confidence”.
- I committed to a decision and took split-second action, not giving my inner critic the time or chance to talk me out of it.
- I chose not to let my feelings decide how I would act. (Huge Aha! Moment)
- I added an experience to my own inventory of acting with confidence, making the next scary thing less scary.
I have the same body image issues as you. I have the same need to fit in. And I’m not trying to brag here, I’m telling you that I was feeling terrified but I made a choice to overrule my feelings. Amazing! This is just ONE of the things Mel Robbins teaches.
Yesterday, I spent over 5 hours (and $99) in this class and it had such a huge impact on me that I am still digesting it all now, as I write this. I immediately reached out to the production company, CreativeLive.com, and asked to partner with them on promoting this course to my midlifers. This in itself was a scary sort of thing for me because Experience 50 is a small fish and they are a very Big Fish. They said YES!
The great news for you is that many of their courses are FREE. No membership fees. Good old FREE.
Over 20,000 people have taken this course and it has a 100% “thumbs up” rating. You can even get a sneak peek preview before buying. In fact, many of their classes are free. I’ll keep you posted on which classes are the best!
As part of my midlife community, you will get 20% off your purchase, $79 for you, just by using this image link. I’m so excited for each of you who decide to tackle the beast.