be your own cheerleader.

i thought i had nothing to write to you today until i reopened my etsy shop yesterday morning.

cup of cold coffee in hand.

pajamas. messy hair.

frantically texting erin & megan panicky sentiments of self-doubt right before opening my shop. 

you know the ones. the "i suck" texts.

i think i can, i think i can, i think i can...
i wasn't so sure i could.

if this experience of leaving my day job to blog, create & teach has taught me anything, it's this: 

be your own cheerleader.

i am so good at putting myself down.

even when i click the publish button & my shop re-opens & all of you amazing people show up & purchase my goods with your hard-earned money, i simply don't show up for myself.

i doubt. i worry. i self-criticize & eat bad food.

maybe this rings true in your life.

i believe this struggle is real in all aspects & roles of our lives. 

i think the world tells us to hush, be quiet, compare, judge, worry, criticize & doubt ourselves. 

i see this in how we parent, how we love our partners, how we view ourselves in our faith, how we lead & teach, how we work, how we give as friends...

the list goes on.

& yet you think we would have learned. but as always, we don't show up for ourselves. rarely do we cheer ourselves on & celebrate our victories. we allow those ugly words to seep into our skin & name us without even realizing it.

friends, how do we expect others to believe in us when we can't even believe in ourselves?

my people, it's about time i show up & believe in myself.

i am a good blogger.
i am a good maker.
i am a good wife.
i am a good daughter.
i am a good friend.
i am good.

let's be our own cheerleaders.

tell me your thoughts. let's start a conversation.



lisa valinsky said...

Gosh, this is so true. I was listening to The Lively Show right before I read this, and the guest was talking about the same thing. We (I think women especially) all struggle with self doubts and questioning.

To deal with this stuff lately, I've been doing two things:

1. Writing it out! I've been writing more posts on my blog about reflection and self-care.

2. Remembering my biggest fan club is my husband and our pup. They mean the world to me, and that's what it all comes down to. :)

oopsiemaizie said...

i needed to read this today... so true... it's easy to fall into the self doubt rut... i'm guilty of it... i love your words... they're honest... just as you've encouraged me this morning, i hope you'll feel encouragement from me, as well... your blog is full of creative, honest from the heart posts which i love... and your shop is full of adorable handmade items!!! keep it all up because you ARE good! xo have a great weekend :)

Stephanie said...

You forgot at least one thing. You take great photos. I love your staging and photos. It always makes me "feel" the picture. I love your blog. I feel like we are friends even though it's just through your blog. But you are so honest and true. Thanks for being my pseudo friend :) ps your shop stuff is totally awesome! :)

Natalie @ Being Mrs. Olson said...

I think it is especially hard for women to remember that it's great to say nice things about yourself. People are so judgmental, and sometimes we need to pull from within to really make ourselves feel right. We can't always rely on others to keep us in line, we must create our own happiness, trust in our hearts, and smile from within!

Stephanie Greig said...

I love this post. One of my best friends and I try to be each other's Moses - pointing to God and helping to remember what God has already done in our lives. Most important, we help each other completely believe who God says we are. Because of what Christ did on the cross - we are free daughters of Jesus, redeemed, beautiful, created and called! Going back to that truth is how we truly let go of the lies we tell ourselves and the lies that were told to us! Blessings to you!!

in God's Grace ~ Stephanie

PS - So excited to receive my first set of happy flags :)

Unknown said...

Oh man, this is so true, and it is something that I needed to hear today! Thank you. We are our own toughest critic, but it is important to realize that the amazing people in your life think you are amazing. Therefore, you must be pretty amazing.

sk said...

Well said. This is my last day of my office job and in the month since I handed in my resignation (in order to spend more time with my daughter and pursue a more authentic lifestyle for my family) I have doubted and questioned myself endlessly. SO MANY negative thoughts of "i'm an idiot! i'll never be able to pay the bills! What have I done???" It's true that those thoughts don't serve me at all. Thanks for staring a conversation on this.

Anna said...

This is always a challenge for me, especially when I am still trying and struggling to find readers/customers/fans for my writing and creations. It is so easy to wonder if it is worth it and so tempting to let it go. But this is work that I love so I keep doing it. I try to focus more on the minutes, hours, or days when I feel like I am getting somewhere, enjoying the process and, in some small way, starting to reach my goals.

Laura said...

I love this post since I have to remind myself of this pretty often.

I work as a designer at a creative agency, and it's so easy to get yourself down because a client or project manager said this or that...

As creative types, we literally give away a bit of ourselves when we make which is so risky, but knowing that it takes an amazing amount of strength to be able to do so each and every day is a great reminder that you rock so hard!! You'd better not stop :)

ashley (pettit) leopoulos said...

You are amazing! Always have been, always will be. Keep being you lady - you're beautiful :)

kwalk said...

Hi Natalie and friends,

In addition to this blog, I make daily check-ins on another blog called Cold Antler Farm... it's written by a farm goddess who runs her own show in so many amazing ways. Her post from yesterday popped into my head when I read through today's conversation here. This woman experiences the same struggles you're describing here, and is overpowering them in all kinds of ways... it's incredible to follow along with her journey. She's yet another dose of daily inspiration (like you, Natalie!) from the interwebs -- check out the post here:

Anonymous said...

Ahh! Natalie! Yes! You speak such truth, and I am so thankful.

I believe that we can talk ourselves out of things so easily because we are so scared. Now this might be a little ridiculous, but I watched the movies "Yes Man" the other day and it actually encouraged me to be a more "yes" person (funny movie too :) )

Thank you so much for being you. Keep doing what you do best, you're rocking it.

Kathrine said...

I can so relate to this! I mean, who can't ... you are definately not alone. Sometimes the most accomplished people are also the ones struggling with self doubt. Big on the outside, small on the inside. I am cheering you on! You have an amazing and inspiring testimony of perseverance, faith, encouragement, hope and joy. Thank you for being you! This made my day ;)

Beth Macre said...

This is soooo true! But oh so difficult sometimes. I find it very difficult to be my own cheerleader. It feels great to get positive feedback from other people, but sometimes I find my inner voice telling me it's not true. I feel a little embarrassed to talk about my own work, but, if I don't, who will? And I think creative people are so self critical, which can lead to low self esteem. Thank you for the reminder today!

Jen Lara said...

In coaching, we say "name it to tame it." You just shined a spotlight on "that voice" and told it to leave you alone. The interesting thing about those voices, is they once served you and brought you a gift. What is the gift that voice gave to you? Sure, it might be an out-dated gift - like a gift you might have used in your childhood, but there is a gift there if you look for it. Once you've identified that gift, you can properly thank that voice. It might sound something like this: Hey Fred, you did a super job keeping me out of trouble when I was a kid and even as an adult, but now, you don't serve me anymore. I'm strong. I've got some mad skills. I can do life on my own without you. ....See? Name it to tame it. Thank it for the gift(s). And say goodbye. xo, Jen from Upcycled Education (PS - usually there are several of those voices, so be ready to repeat the process with the entire gang!).

Sian said...

I feel exactly the same. Its hard to be your own cheerleader but also so essential to moving forward in life. I NEED to work on this xxx

Sara Lynn said...

Jen's (Upcycled Education) comment led me to her blog and this post that addresses the topics of Bravery, Confidence, and Arrogance. Excellent post, Jen!! It really helped me to pinpoint how I deal with challenges and squelching doubt.

I am an 8th grade science teacher, so I put myself in front of a fairly judgmental audience five days a week. I am a sensitive person, now with pretty thick skin. :) Here are a few mantras/lessons I've learned over the years that have helped me to be brave (or naive): 1. "If I had feelings, they'd be hurt. (Mantra from a fellow seasoned middle school teacher. Said with tongue in cheek.) 2. "What is the absolute worst that could happen if this action is taken? Will I live?" 3. "One, two, three - go! Spring into action before you even have time to begin listing the doubts!"

When friends ask me how I've done some of the things that I've done, moved to Chile to live and work, traveled through foreign countries alone, gone to outings with complete strangers, I always answer that I simply went/did without giving it too much thought. Confidence through naivete!

Holly said...

I love this post. And how did I miss the adorable Christmas flags?!

Patty Marker said...

Loved this post Natalie. Being your own cheerleader isn't something that is often taught in Sunday school but it is so important. Thanks for the reminder!

Katie said...

Hi, Natalie.

I recently have been talking with a new friend about doing a ladies craft day. It is something I have dreamed about doing for some time, but I have not had the courage. I actually never thought of it as a reality because I doubt myself more than not. In our discussion she encouraged the idea and suggested I look at your blog about your Valentine event. I am now creeping your old posts and was super thrilled when I realized you are an Arkansas girl too (though I live in MO now).

I came to this post, and stopped me dead in my tracks. This is me. I know it is all of us, but I have been struggling with every word of this. Lately has been the worst. I have ups but mostly downs about my shop and my creative dreams. This post brought tears to my eyes and gave me the push I needed to get up and away from this computer, stop comparing myself to others, and just go and do and make and do it with confidence...that is the goal anyway. Thanks for the encouragement. Too bad I moved because we could totally be best friends. :)

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