Last week, someone I respect and admire publicly disagreed with me about something I wrote.

My inner gladiator high fived myself when I saw her comments because I know that if I can’t be publicly disagreed with from time to time, then I’m likely not articulating a point of view clearly enough.

But the fearful part of me shrank from her criticism because deep inside me there is and will always be a little girl who doesn’t want anyone to be upset with her.

Learning to soothe that little girl has been one of the most important leadership skills I have mastered over the last decade.

Can you relate?

You voice an opinion, decide on something, make a call, share a point of view and then you second guess yourself, or wallow in the vulnerability that goes hand in hand with bringing your true self to the fore.

When that little, vulnerable girl who hates displeasing people comes out to play, here’s what I have learned to do.

I take a deep breath and get very quiet.

I cup my hands together and picture that little girl sitting cross-legged on my palm.

I allow myself to physically feel the love I have for that small girl who just so happens to be a part of me.

And I say to her, “I get it. THEY don’t approve of you. But do YOU approve of yourself?”

Yes. She whispers.

And when it really comes down to it, that’s all the answer you or I or anyone else ever really needs.

Stay fierce,

Eleanor

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