Why Can't You See What I See?

I recently spent time with a girlfriend that I have known for all of my adult life. She is one of the most honest, loyal, compassionate, hardworking, and successful women that I know. She too, believes that one of the most powerful things successful women can do is encourage other females to find their voice, their courage, their confidence. Because of this shared belief, we talk often about our hopes and dreams for the future of not just our daughters, but of the next generation of females.

During one of our recent heart to hearts, she shared with me that she can’t seem to shake this belief that she really isn’t who everyone thinks she. She told me she is just waiting for everyone to figure out that she is a fraud and that she doesn’t deserve this incredible career, relationship, and family that she has worked so hard to create. I will say it again, that she worked so hard to create.  I listened to her doubt her talent, her body, her brain, and her ability to be what everyone expects her to be and the whole time I was thinking to myself “why can’t you see what I see? What everyone around you sees?”

 My girlfriend has so many incredible traits that have shaped her into an amazing friend, wife, mother, daughter, and someone who is making a tremendous difference in the lives of so many others, especially of other girls and women around her. I have watched her daughter grown up into this kind, strong, confident young woman. I have seen firsthand the life changing impact she has made on countless young women she has been surrounded with. Yet, she still doubts herself. She still doesn’t think that she deserves the success she has worked so hard to earn. I want her to know that she is wrong. She deserves everything she has and more. Nothing was handed to her, she worked tirelessly to get where she is today.

How do we as females help champion other women to see themselves the way that we see them? What do we need to stop saying to ourselves over and over again? What can we say to the girls and women in our lives to help encourage and build them up? Listen, society today puts enough pressure on females to be perfect. Smart, pretty, thin, outspoken but not too opinionated, brave but not too audacious, the list goes on and on… I wish I knew exactly what to say to my friend to help her see herself the way that others see her. She is strong, smart, beautiful, and one of the bravest women I know. I want her to know that she is enough. I want her to see that in herself. I want her to feel that confidence that she helped instill in me.

If you are doubting something about yourself today, I want you to look in the mirror and tell yourself YOU ARE ENOUGH. Say it again, YOU ARE ENOUGH. If you know someone who is struggling to see themselves the way that you see them, take a few minutes to send them a text, give them a call, or if you are lucky enough to see them in person, give them a huge hug and tell them that not only are they enough, they are INCREDIBLE. Don’t wait for another opportunity to celebrate all of the way your girlfriends SHINE!