The Audacity of Declaring Who You Are

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What does the word “feminine” mean to you? Dictionaries (and your grandfather) will tell you it means delicate. Soft. Sensitive.

I’d like to pull us into the 21st century, redefine feminine, and create a description we can all step into.

Feminine is feeling powerful and worthy about who you are and what you do.

When I first started my career in sales, I’ll admit I was delicate and soft. If something didn’t go my way, I took it personally. I sought validation from those around me instead of from inside myself.

But this all changed when I boggled an important meeting with a VIP client and got yelled at by my boss for missing my sales goals. I tend to be introspective and I realized the reason I was failing was because of my mindset.

I didn’t fully believe I had something important to say or share. I was playing out a personal drama and looking for validation. If a customer bought from me, I was a good person. If they didn’t, I was a bad person.

I was making the entire transaction and my sales career about me. A-ha!

My first instinct was to run away, change careers and never look back, but I took a deeper look at who I was and what I had to offer. I realized, through sales, I could help people in ways they couldn’t help themselves. And something inside me started to shift.

Too many women place their futures into hope. Instead, we need to decide. The reason we hope instead of decide is to avoid being responsible for the outcome. We would rather rely on luck than play an active role in making things happen.

Hope gives us a false sense of forward movement while allowing us room to bail in case we sense failure approaching.

Let’s face it: hope feels good. It takes us off the hot seat and lets us fantasize about our dreams coming true without having to take action.

The ability to decide is a powerful skill. It requires us to self-source our empowerment and overcome our fears. When we decide, we declare ourselves worthy. We step into the tremendous value we have to offer. We uncross the “hoping” fingers from behind our back and find ways to make it happen. We become unstoppable.

It takes moxie and willingness to make a bold decision to change our circumstances. Deciding can challenge us because we are put in the leadership position. It can feel like we have an overdeveloped sense of audacity.

The truth is that the secret ingredient to success is having the audacity to declare that who you are and what you do will benefit others greatly. Fully embrace the value you offer and let others see how much you believe.

By becoming unshakeable in my belief about what I was selling, I overcame my sales hurdles and started reaching my goals. My customers bought because they trusted my steadfastness.

Dusting of one’s moxie is an on-going process. In this moment, set aside the fear and doubt. Move out of hope and into decision. Begin to sparkle and fully believe in the value you offer.

What other people say, do, or think has nothing to do with you. It has everything to do with them. Funny thing: the confidence I was seeking lived inside of me, not outside of me. No one else could give it to me.

We have to believe in what we do and who we are even with no evidence that we are great.

To find our power, to realize our brilliance, we simply have to decide to be who we are. That’s the true definition of feminine.

About the Author

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Julie Steelman has generated more than $100 million in sales during her 30-year sales career using her unique "heart-based" selling approach. She is the author of a new book, The Effortless Yes: Get the Sales You Want and Make All You'll Ever Need (Franklin-Green Publishing, 2011), featuring a 7-step approach that helps sales-averse entrepreneurs create profits by learning a new way to sell that's pleasurable and easy.

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