Do you feed your Soul or your Ego?

Since moving to the ranchette, I’ve softened. My energy has softened, my voice has softened and my body has softened.

I’ve started living in alignment with who I truly am.

unbridled-retreats

When I’m on the phone, my friends tell me that my voice is less intense. I’m not trying so hard and pushing to make things happen.

I’ve found a new rhythm.

It doesn’t involve cable, constant Starbucks runs, a real estate career and frequent happy hours like my city life did. That rhythm fed my ego and kept me going at an unnatural pace. Constantly striving and driving.

The satisfaction was fleeting. It looked good from the outside. It worked ok. But it didn’t feel right.

My current rhythm is much more in sync with my true nature.

It involves waking up without an alarm clock, going to bed around ten, caring for horses, ranch chores, looking at the stars, building relationships in the community, expressing my gifts and pouring my heart into Unbridled Retreats and then letting go of the outcome.

I’ve stopped pushing, forcing and hunting down what I want. Thank god because I was repelling people, business opportunities and potential romantic relationships away. My masculine energy had over ridden my feminine energy and it was an energetic turn off.

Somewhere along the way I had picked up the belief that I couldn’t be vulnerable, feminine, soft AND pursue my dreams and achieve success at the same time.

Nature and the ranchette have taught me differently.

That I can’t control everything. That it’s ok to stop holding on so tightly. That the weather is going to change. That the sun is still going to come out. That it’s safe to surrender. Surrender to my calling and my true nature. That’s my new definition of success.

Coming from that perspective, new business has come in unexpected ways. No surprise really. I finally got out of my own way. I let go of how I was convinced things SHOULD look and started trusting how they are naturally meant to unfold. Easier said then done but I’ve got  a great mentor: Nature.

Nature’s got it figured out. I’ve started following her lead.

I still do what needs to be done but then I let go. My energy has shifted and that has made all the difference.

I’ve also shifted into gratitude. I can’t help it. It’s too beautiful here.

I was sweeping out the barn last week. All the doors were open and there was a breeze coming through. I could hear the horses contently munching hay outside in the paddock. A huge wave of gratitude overcame me. It brought me down to my knees in the middle of the barn. Tears streamed down my face and gratitude busted me wide open.

I’ve never felt so alive. So connected.

I feel nourished and full. My body has softened. My natural curves have filled in and I FEEL whole, beautiful and feminine. I feel like the woman I’m meant to be.

When my soul is fed everything else seems to fall into place.

What feeds your soul?

Until you try something new, you never know what the outcome will be. That’s the catch, you never know until you answer the call and FOLLOW YOUR INTUITION.

Why else are we here if not to do what makes your soul happy? It’s not selfish. What’s selfish is compromising who you are and holding back from sharing your natural gifts with the world.

I’m not saying it’s easy to let go of your comfort zone, the familiar, what you THINK you need in order to feel successful, happy and content. But it is worth exploring.

You may be surprised at what you need to thrive.

For me, it was less stuff, more nature. Less striving, more trusting and allowing.

Once you start feeding your soul and aligning with your true nature, the universe responds. I guarantee it. My ego kept me in the city. My intuition brought me to the ranchette.

Trust your intuition and find what feeds your soul. Then immerse yourself in it as much as possible. Your life will change for the better.

Love,

Devon

How to Handle Criticism

Awhile back something happened that really rocked me. I received my first scathing email from someone who attended a retreat I led. As I opened the email and read the first sentence, I stopped breathing and braced myself for the blow that was coming. My eyes raced through the first paragraph, trying to avoid the stinging words leaping off my computer screen. I thought the quicker I could read through it, the less it would hurt.

As I proceeded to read through the 13 paragraphs of what I did wrong, my emotions went in every direction imaginable.  I felt angry, shocked, hurt and sad.

It was my worst nightmare come true…someone didn’t like me or what I had to offer. My inner people-pleaser was crushed.

My mind started racing around all the “wrong” things I did, and my thoughts spiraled to “I must be wrong,” “I must not be good enough if someone else thinks so.”

Then, the other part of my brain kicked in, my inner defender who digs her heels in the dirt, points the finger back and says, “That’s bullshit,” “She’s out of line,” “This is about her and not me.”

My thoughts continued to run rampant and the email became the last thing I thought about at night, and the first thing I thought about in the morning.

It took me a few days before I decided to revisit the email, this time with a compassionate perspective. I put myself in the messenger’s cowboy boots to see where she’s coming from.

Once I adopted the compassion angle, I realized this was a gift. I pride myself on doing a damn good job in my work, and doing the best I can, but I can’t please everyone. Thank goodness I realized this because it gave me relief. Not everyone will like me. Or be happy with me. AND THAT’S OKAY.

“Appreciate the constructive; ignore the destructive.” – John Douglas

Before I re-read the email, I burned sage, said a prayer for the messenger and myself, took a huge breath, and clicked “open.” This time my body wasn’t in fight or flight mode and I could read the words clearly without my emotions taking over. From this place, I plucked out the constructive feedback and bypassed the destructive criticism by taking deep breaths and staying present.

“Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” – Aristotle

I’ve avoided criticism most of my life and have gone extra lengths to be in the “approval” zone. For many years I played it safe, stayed under the radar, limited my exposure, and sought out relationships and scenarios I could control. That is all shifting as my desire to create and expand grows, and I realize I can’t please everyone. My growing edge is to continue putting myself out there in spite of the familiar fear, “What will they think?”

“Sandwich criticism between two layers of praise.” –Mary Kay Ash

Before and after I re-read the email, I went through testimonials on my website and feedback from other women who attended the same retreat, whom had raving reviews. Their positive reviews shored up my strength and reminded me that I don’t suck at this, and I shouldn’t throw down my toys and quit because someone doesn’t like me or what I have to offer.

“The dread of criticism is the death of genius.” –William Gilmore Simms

Now I know in my bones that I can handle criticism. It’s part of putting myself out there. I can hide and stay safe or I can rise up and keep showing up. Keep improving. Keep being true to myself and sharing my gifts.

If someone doesn’t like me, I won’t crumble as a result. Criticism allowed me to face my fear head-on, and walk through it. Many women at my retreats courageously face their fears, and through this experience, I faced mine.

My old fear is replaced by growing strength and conviction that I can handle whatever comes my way.

Only when we face our fears can we overcome them.

How do you handle criticism? I’d love to know. Share in the comments below.

Grateful, stronger, and always learning,
Devon

Do you struggle to find your passion? Try THIS…

While scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed this morning, I stopped mid scroll when I came across Dr. Christiane Northrup’s post. (Side note, if you haven’t read her book “Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom”, I suggest you do so immediately.)

She posted:

“What did you love when you were between nine and eleven years old?  Is that your profession or hobby now?”

I LOVE this topic and as a coach, I’m frequently asked by clients “How do I find my passion?”

The journey of finding your passion is not about finding it as much as uncovering it. Your passion is already an innate part of you. It may just be buried or you haven’t been in an environment where it’s fueled.

When I was between the ages of nine and eleven I was obsessed with horses.

I would wear cowgirl boots to school and t-shirts with cartoon horse characters (see pic below). A few other horse crazy girls and I would set up jumps aka picnic benches at recess and design courses. Then we’d “pick up a canter” and jump over the benches pretending we were horses.

horse girl dev

I loved riding horses just as much as I loved being with them. Caring for them. Grooming them. Being in the barn and listening to them eat hay. It was where I felt most like myself. It was in the presence of horses.

As I grew up, I strayed from my passion and put other priorities to the forefront. I lost sight of that horse loving girl. I lost myself.

I got derailed and my soul revolted. I developed an eating disorder which was the red flag for how far I’d ventured from what fulfilled me. As the universe would have it, I ended up at a treatment center in Arizona that had equine therapy. Through a non-linear path, I circled back to horses, but this time in a new way.

Haphazardly, my passion was reignited. 

However, it did NOT mean in that moment I had it all figured out.

But when I started re-engaging with my horse passion without stressing about figuring it all out, doors opened. Mentors appeared. Opportunities came my way. The same will happen for you when you re-engage with what you used to love.

The universe wants us to be fulfilled. Our childhood passions are clues on the trail to fulfillment. We must follow them.

Even if it’s not the “holy grail” answer right away, stoking the fire of what you used to love will always lead you in the right direction.

If you’re trying to find your passion, give yourself permission to explore and excavate. Go back. What did you love when you were nine to eleven years old?  If you can’t remember, ask a sibling or relative or get out an old photo album.  Your childhood passion is the compass to your fulfillment. 

So what did you used to love doing? Is it a part of your life now? I’d love to hear from you, share your experience in the comments below. 

The girl who now wears cowgirl boots to work,

Devon

Trust your intuition to follow your dreams

Trusting my intution-from real estate agent to ranch woman

From Real Estate Agent (l) to Ranch Woman (r)

I learned just how powerful my intuition is when I packed up my life, left a six year real estate career, cashed my last commission check, and moved from a Denver townhouse to the Larkspur ranch.

Well-intentioned friends, family and colleagues advised me to keep my real estate license “just in case” and “as a backup”.

But my intuition spoke to me saying something entirely different. It told me to cut off the golden handcuffs and go for it. After three and a half years of working in real estate and building Unbridled Retreats simultaneously, it was time to make the leap into living my dream full-time.

So I jumped! I was bound and determined to never have the phrases “Outstanding curb appeal” and “Light and bright kitchen” come out of my mouth again. Instead I wanted to follow my intuition which said my purpose was to work with women and horses, my true calling.

Trust your intuition and take the leap-Moving day-Unbridled Retreats

After years of trying to be who I thought I should be, I began living my life in alignment with who I really am…a woman who is much happier helping people find their personal worth vs. the worth of their home.

Being true to yourself is about going for what you want, not what you think you “should” want based on the expectations of your friends, your spouse, your kids, your relatives, or your colleagues.

Following your dreams requires taking risks, accepting uncertainty, relying on your courage, and learning to trust your intuition. Taking the path of your dreams is the road less traveled. If you’ve read this far I know you’ve got a calling that will lead to your dream, even if you’re not living it yet.

Empowered women following their dreams at Unbridled Retreats

BELIEVE IN YOURSELF AND TRUST YOUR INTUITION. It will guide you, one step (or leap), at a time.

Your dream may not happen overnight but it will happen over time. Never give up, trust your intuition, believe in yourself, get support, take risks, find mentors, and give it everything you’ve got.

Do you listen to your intuition? I’d love to hear from you. Share in the comments below.

The Realtor turned ranchwoman,

Devon

My Life with Horses

A life of riding became my life’s mission to help others experience the transformative power of horses.

My mission- to help others experience the support and acceptance found in connecting with horses_Unbrildled Retreats
I was blessed to grow up with horses, although at the time I didn’t realize just how lucky I was. Both of my parents are horse people. Every Sunday we would go to the pasture across from my grandparents’ home and ride horses around the lake. My pony was named Chindy.

At the time I didn’t appreciate the gift of horses because I wasn’t given a choice to ride, it was my parents decision. My eight-year-old self wanted to do other things like play soccer and hang out with my friends. However, that all changed in fourth grade when Brynie and Dina, the cool girls, started to take riding lessons at a fancy barn called High Prairie Farms in Parker, Colorado. I was invited to take riding lessons with them, and I became hooked. I loved going to the barn for lessons every Friday after school. I loved the ritual of riding and the riding uniform—paddock boots, leather chaps and helmet.

I began taking riding lessons once a week and my obsession with horses started to develop. By the time I was 11 years old I identified completely with the riding culture. 

When I wasn’t taking riding lessons at High Prairie Farms, I was riding Chindy at my grandparent’s house and spending a lot of time on the necessary chores of mucking, grooming, and feeding. I didn’t mind the work at all; I wanted to spend as much time as possible with my four-legged friends. Brynie and Dina quit riding, but I kept going. The horse force inside me was strong and there was no turning back. “Horse Girl” became my identity, and the barn was a safe haven where I could truly be myself.

My Life With Horses_Unbridled Retreas

At age 14, I started working with a new trainer, Jim, who helped me get accepted into Pony Club. I began competing in three-day eventing which was a blast. Some of my favorite memories were at Pony Club rallies and cross country jumping with one of my closest friends, Brooke. My big, beautiful, chestnut gelding Rooney was my constant companion from the age of 12 to 17. We won one horse trial. Rooney didn’t always like to jump (resulting in a broken nose for me during one attempt). My love for horses  and my horse-life identity was growing every year.

My Life With Horses_Unbridled Retreats-The Early Years

I continued riding up until the end of high school, when I made the choice to go to the University of California in Santa Barbara. I envisioned living by the beach and marrying a surfer guy. I had decided it was time to move forward and explore a life beyond horses. I sold my horse and went to college. At the time I was a perfectionist with control issues and the consequences of these characteristics were starting to show. Being so far away from home without my horse, my friends, or my family led to a deep depression.

The dorm rooms were not a safe haven as the barn had been. I began numbing my feelings through bulimia which quickly became a daily routine. This helped me feel more in control, numbing my discomfort but it also kept me from a social life and affected my studies. After six months in California, I dropped out of college and returned to Colorado. I attended Colorado State University briefly, but at that point, my obsession with food and numbing my emotions ran my life. I thought joining the polo team at CSU would be helpful because I’d be around horses, but it wasn’t the same.

Riding horses wasn’t the answer—I was out-of-control and facing addiction. I tried to escape. I dropped out of college and went to New Zealand thinking if I went halfway around the world, I could run-away from my eating disorder. 

Waitressing in Queenstown in the South Island, the bulimia continued. I moved again, to the North Island, thinking if I worked on a horse farm in small town Raglan maybe being around horses could fix me. I got a job as the head groom of a hare hunting stable and I was riding four or five horses every day. It was beautiful country, the riding was great, but again, my soul craved more than riding horses. I felt lost and confused and I knew I needed to heal from the inside out.

I ended my work visa early and came back to Colorado feeling like a failure, ashamed at my attempts to escape my problems. I was self-sabotaging, which landed me in a hospital, then a mental institution, then Mirasol, a holistic eating disorder treatment center in Arizona.

Mirasol offered equine therapy to help patients. I’d never heard of equine therapy, but I knew that “equine” meant I’d be around horses again. When I showed up at the treatment center in Arizona, it was unlike the sanitary mental institution feel of the hospital. There were no fluorescent lights, only natural sunshine and a beautiful hacienda that had been converted into an inviting treatment center. I immediately felt my soul take a deep breath, and I knew this was where my healing was meant to happen.

I looked forward to the equine therapy sessions and I was excited to be around horses again. I volunteered to be the first to go in a session and I stepped into the round pen with a horse named Jack. There were no bridles, no saddles—this was not about riding, this was something different. Marla, the equine therapist, told me to go to Jack and connect with him. I confidently walked right up to him and he walked away. He turned his butt to me and walked as far away as he could! I stood there feeling ashamed and embarrassed. Even the horse didn’t want to be with me at this point of my addiction and self-destruction. I didn’t blame him.

Marla saw my pain and told me to ground myself in the dirt and take long, deep breaths. As I began to connect and root to the earth, I felt a wave of emotion come from deep within me. For the first time in my 21 years of life, I could not control my emotions. The tears began leaking out of my eyes and I started sobbing. The moment my authentic emotions were released, Jack turned and looked at me and then immediately walked over and placed his gentle muzzle in my heart.

My Life-Changing Encounter with Horses_Unbridled Retreats

I was wailing and sobbing and Jack stood with me through my pain, not moving. He stood with me and offered unwavering strength, support, and unconditional love. I was shocked, experiencing a deep love and connection I had never known. Jack accepted me exactly as I was, and that’s what my soul needed. In that moment, everything changed. My relationship with horses stopped being ego-based, and instead began to emanate from my heart. Jack’s presence and love had shifted my vibration and I felt open, hopeful, and eager to share more of my authentic self with the world, a feeling I’d never had before.

That moment in the round pen opened up my heart and my past and started me on the path to helping others through the healing power of horses. I finished my 60-day treatment at Mirasol and returned home full of hope and purpose. I soon met Melisa Pierce, owner and creator of the Touched by a Horse Equine Gestalt Coaching Certification, and I immediately signed up to attend. It seemed that the universe had placed in my hands the perfect education. I was excited and passionate about learning to help others through horses in a healing way. I became an avid student, always studying (something I had never done in college). I now had a purpose— to connect people with horses for healing, self-discovery, and empowerment. 

My bulimia had subsided and my energy was redirected with intense focus into my newfound passion. I began volunteering at therapeutic riding centers, immersing myself in the equine therapy world. I had found my calling. Horses had been by my side throughout my life, patiently waiting, but it wasn’t until my darkest days that I saw their light and was pulled me out of my dark tunnel of despair.

It became my mission and life’s purpose to help others experience the love, support, and acceptance found in connecting with horses—it’s an authentic connection unlike any other relationship. Several years later I founded Beyond the Arena and then Unbridled Retreats. With horses as my partners, we help women access their inner wisdom during coaching sessions and horse retreats to take back into their everyday lives. This happens without judgment, through love and pure honesty. After a lifetime spent with horses, I am still in awe of their gentle patience, and their ability to teach all of us about ourselves.  

My mission- to help others experience the support and acceptance found in connecting with horses_Unbrildled Retreats

Have you been transformed by horses? Share your experience in the comments below.

Neighmaste,

Devon

How to get unstuck and make your dream happen

As a coach, one of the most common things I hear from people is “I have a dream but I’m stuck on HOW to make it happen.”

I’ve been there too, and here’s what I’ve learned…

Check out the 5 steps for HOW to make your dream happen:

1. Ignore your Inner Critic

The more excited you feel about making your dream happen, the louder your inner critic will become. It wants you to stay in your comfort zone, aka stay stuck, and not take risks. It pipes up and says “You’re not good enough, you’re going to fail, you’re a fraud, you don’t know what you’re doing…” Sound familiar?

That voice is a NORMAL part of going for your dream and the key is to not buy into what it’s saying. The inner critic is a fearful, small-minded voice designed to hold you back and it’s not who you truly are. My inner critic still pipes up, like right now, “This blog post is too long, you’re not a great writer…blah,blah,blah) but I continue to take action in spite of it and that’s made all the difference.

“Remember, you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” – Louise L. Hay

2. Listen to your Intuition and not Naysayers

Whoever says you can’t do what you love and be successful, has never done it. To put it bluntly, don’t listen to them. When I exited my real estate career to pursue Unbridled Retreats full-time, well-intentioned friends, family and colleagues advised me to keep my real estate license “just in case” and “as a backup.”

But my intuition said something different. It told me to cut off the golden handcuffs and go for it. After a three and a half years of of building Unbridled Retreats and selling houses simultaneously, it was time to leave real estate behind. Your intuition will guide you step by step if you listen, trust, and follow it.

“Consider the track record of your naysayers. How many dreams have they successfully brought into this world?” – Sarah Ban Breathnach

3. Find a Mentor

My dream of Unbridled Retreats would not have happened without mentors.

A mentor is someone who has blazed the trail before you and has experience, advice, and wisdom on how to get from where you are, to where you want to be.

Most importantly, a mentor believes in you and inspires you to keep going. No matter what your dream is, there are people who have experience doing what you want to do. Here are my mentors:

Melisa Pearce is the creator of the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method, a savvy entrepreneur, and she lives the horsewoman dream. When I first arrived at her barn for my certification training, my jaw dropped as I looked around at the gorgeous horses, inspirational posters on the walls, and indoor arena with epic views of the Flatiron mountains. I thought, WOW, this woman is living her dream doing what she loves…it IS possible!

Melisa showed me the lifestyle that is possible by following your dreams and I soaked up as much knowledge as I could from her.

(Pic is at the International Equine Gestalt Coaching Summit where Melisa Pearce encouraged me to begin public speaking.)

Sally Hope is a former rockstar turned life coach and creator of the Wildheart Revolution. I met Sally at a life coach training and learned that she traveled the country in an RV, rocking her renegade life coaching business while writing inspiring blog posts.

Sally is like a kickass, empowered older sister. I immediately signed up for her coaching program and she showed me how to be authentic in my business, and successfully do things my own way.

(Pic is at Sally’s Wildheart Retreat in Montana which inspired me to lead my own retreats.)

“Show me a successful individual and I’ll show you someone who had real positive influences in his or her life. I don’t care what you do for a living—if you do it well I’m sure there was someone cheering you on or showing the way. A mentor.” — Denzel Washington

4. Volunteer

One of the best ways to get unstuck, is to get out of your head and help others. Google places and people who do what you want to do, and offer to be of service.

I volunteered at numerous therapeutic riding centers to gain experience, knowledge, and to get clear on the type of clients I wanted to serve. Volunteering gave me a purpose by helping others, and it was an effective way to gain experience in my dream career path.

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Mahatma Gandhi

5. Take one small step every day

There’s a lot of talk about the glorified “leap” of cutting ties and going for your dream. I’ll never forget the day I cashed my last real estate commission check and skipped out the sliding glass doors, but it was hundreds of small consistent action steps that led me to that moment. Take one small step everyday toward your dream…the steps add up.

“Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.” – Chinese Proverb

Your dream doesn’t happen overnight, but it will happen over time if you never give up, believe in yourself, get support, take risks, find a mentor, and take small actions each day.

I’d love to hear from you…which one of the five steps resonates with you the most? Post in the comments below!

Dreams do come true,

Devon

Devon in a field

How to become Unbridled

Are you overworked, overscheduled, feeling contained, and wanting to break free?

It’s time to become Unbridled.

You’ve been holding onto the reins of life so tightly that your “sense of security” is robbing you of joy.

Time to gently let go, trust more and worry less, ease up on yourself and everyone around you. Life is not meant to be nonstop busy with scheduled activities…it’s meant to be enJOYed in the moment, with space for spontaneity, creativity, and self-expression.

Instead of listening to what your ego wants, ask what your soul needs.

Nature? Belly laughs? Live music? Swimming? Horses? Flowers? Silence? Sensuality? Dancing? Writing? Healing? Traveling? Creativity? Adventure?

Time to say YES to your intuitive nudges, and NO to other people’s expectations. Start listening WITHIN for answers, and stop looking OUTSIDE for other people’s approval.

You can work on a dude ranch, with free room and board, and be around horses all day. Or travel the world, stay in hostels, and work online. Downsize your stuff, upgrade your experiences, and break free of who you thought you had to be.

Becoming Unbridled, Devon in a field

There are many ways to live the life your soul is calling you toward. Time to think outside the box, trade conformity for authenticity, and leave the monotonous routine behind in exchange for the adventure of being alive.

Step out of the confining comfort zone, release the golden handcuffs, and become the unbridled woman you were born to be.

She is calling your name…are you listening?

Your Unbridled guide,

Devon 

The #1 Thing to Do to Follow Your Dreams

Do you know the biggest difference between people who are living their dreams and those who aren’t?

It’s TAKING ACTION AND GOING FOR IT IN SPITE OF FEAR, plus the ability to tolerate risk, uncertainty and feeling uncomfortable for a while.

There are no guarantees in life and none of us know what the trail ahead looks like…that’s part of the adventure.

If you keep doing the same things over and over, you’re going to get exactly what you’ve always gotten.

And I have a feeling you want more…

The #1 Thing to Do to Follow Your Dreams

To reach new ground and experience change, you must take risks, step into the unknown and have FAITH. Trust yourself; trust the universe; trust whatever you believe in.

People, situations, and opportunities will swoop in when you let go of the familiar and take small steps toward what you want in life.

You can overthink, overplan, overanalyze (aka talk yourself out of it) but GOING FOR IT makes your dreams happen.

Enough planning and thinking about it…if your heart is beating fast and your palms are sweaty, that’s a good thing, you’re ready…take a deep breath and GO FOR IT.

I’d love to hear from you, what’s one small step you’re taking today to move toward your dreams and go for it? Share in the comments below.

Devon 

 

P.S. Don’t miss out on the upcoming Unbridled Retreats. Check them out HERE

7 Solutions to Give Your Fears the Boot

Giving your fears the boot is a skill and a practice. Your fears have most likely have been with you for a long time, but they DO NOT have to control your life.

Here are 7 solutions to help you confront and overcome your fears…

1. WRITE A LETTER TO YOURSELF FROM YOUR FEAR

Acknowledge your fear. Give it a voice. By consciously allowing your fear to be heard, you’ll understand it’s “job”. Your fear may have served you in the past—protected you from failing, kept you from embarrassment, saved you from pain, etc. Now, your fear may be holding you back. When you acknowledge your fear and understand where it’s coming from, you can decide if your fear is serving you, or if it’s time to let it go.

Example:
Dear Devon,
As your fear, I’m holding you back to protect you from potential rejection. I’m keeping you safe from feeling rejected like you felt 14 years ago, when you told Will you loved him and he broke up with you.

“If you try to get rid of fear without knowing its meaning, it will grow stronger and return.” – Deepak Chopra

2. TAKE SMALL STEPS EVERY DAY

Instead of letting fear paralyze you from taking action, take advantage of the enormous energy it holds within it. Channel your fear into action by taking small courageous steps each day; make the call, write the email, sign up for the class, speak up in the group, or the boardroom. Each time you take a small action in spite of fear, you build self-confidence which is the #1 key to overcoming fear.

“Do one thing every day that scares you.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

3. UNDERSTAND THAT PERFECTION ONLY EXISTS IN THE MIND

Being perfect is an illusion sold to us by magazines, commercials, and social media—we’re influenced by the opinions of others of who we think we should be. Give yourself permission to BE YOU! Allow yourself to make mistakes, understanding that every mistake is a lesson learned. Fear of making mistakes is ultimately fear of making progress. You will make mistakes…we all do. EMBRACE IT! Set yourself free from the illusion of being “perfect”. Making mistakes is the fastest way to learn, grow, and achieve your dreams.

“The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.” – Elbert Hubbard

4. MOVE YOUR BODY

Fear creates stale energy in your body, which generates tension and stress. Physical activity keeps your energy flowing and dissipates negative thoughts. When your energy flows, your fears decrease. Physical activity makes you feel more confident by achieving tangible goals. Choose an activity that gets you out of your head and gets your heart rate going, such as jogging, power walking, dancing, biking, or yoga.

“Movement is a medicine for creating change in a person’s physical, emotional, and mental states.” – Carol Welch

5. MEDITATE

When you meditate, you quiet the monkey chatter of your mind which can be filled with habitual fear-based thoughts. Meditation connects you to your intuition, which is your internal GPS. Meditation teaches you to live in the present moment, and release fear and worry about the past or the future. For a simple guide on How to Meditate, CLICK HERE.

“A quiet mind is able to hear intuition over fear.” – Yvan Byeajee

6. SHARE YOUR FEARS

When you share your fears aloud, it diffuses the debilitating grip they have on you. Talk to a trusted friend, partner, life coach or counselor about your deepest fears. Notice how it feels to share your fears aloud, bringing them out of the dark and into the light. By exposing your fears, they lose their power.

“We should never let our fears hold us back from pursuing our hopes.” – John F. Kennedy

7. VISUALIZE THE BEST POSSIBLE OUTCOME

Your fear tends to imagine the worst possible outcome, which then becomes your new belief of what will happen. Instead, flip the script! Visualize the best possible outcome of what you fear. If you fear public speaking, imagine yourself receiving a standing ovation. If you fear starting a business, visualize yourself earning a living doing what you love. Your body doesn’t know the difference between what’s real and what’s imagined. By consistently visualizing your ideal outcome, you embody it.

“Visualizing a positive outcome will allow you to grow in confidence of the situation because you can believe that things will go well.” – Ryan McLean

Life is NOT about being fearless. It’s about being courageous—acknowledging the presence of your fears, and persevering in spite of them.

By reading this, you’re already on the trail to overcoming your fears. Be patient. Have faith. Trust yourself. And know that you are courageous.

I’d love to hear from you…which solution will you apply to give your fears the boot? Share in the comments below!

Giddy up,

Devon

BONUS! Click here to download and print out 7 Solutions to Overcoming Your Fears, to keep on your desk as a daily reminder.

To Change Your Life You Must Do This….

 

Last week, I did 2 things that were uncomfortable.

First, I went to a fitness center I’d never been, Orange Theory, and worked out with 20 strangers for one hour. I felt uncomfortable not knowing the workout routine, or how to use the machines. The instructor walked me though the gym and described the exercises. I nervously looked around trying to figure out if I belonged there, and failed to hear her instruction for how to get on the rowing machine.

As I sat down on the rowing machine, the seat slipped out from under me and I fell on my rear end. Blushing with embarrassment, I got up off the floor, smiled sheepishly, and finished the workout.  It wasn’t perfect but I was proud of myself for sticking it out.

Second on the uncomfortable list, I filmed a Facebook Live Video sharing my story about how horses saved my life from bulimia and depression. I’ve shared my story in retreats and small groups, but never on live video. 

I was uncomfortable not knowing what people might write in the comments, or how the video would turn out.

Halfway through filming, an incoming call came though the iPhone I was recording on, and the live screen became shaky. For the next 5 minutes, it looked like I was talking 2 times faster than I was. I felt uncomfortable watching my face shake on the screen, and not knowing how to fix it. I was disappointed that video didn’t turn out great but proud of myself for taking the risk to put my story out there.

I did these two things to push myself out of my comfort zone because:

A.) I want to be fit and have a healthy, strong body plus meet some new people.

B.) I want to share my story about Beyond the Arena to a larger audience to spread the message of the healing power of horses.

Later in the week, I did another Orange Theory Class and Facebook Live Video. I still felt uncomfortable but not as much as the first time. 



This time at Orange Theory, I was more confident and knew NOT to sit on the rowing machine seat too fast. I also recognized a few of the people who were there during my first class. No longer strangers, they smiled and said “Welcome back!” which made me feel good.

During the second Facebook Live video, I clicked “Do Not Disturb,” on my iPhone so incoming calls wouldn’t disrupt the filming. I was still uncomfortable sharing my story on live video, but it wasn’t as scary as the first time. I felt more confident and gave myself permission to share more – I spoke 10 minutes longer than the first time.

Point is, if you want to change anything in your life, you have do do things differently — and that feels uncomfortable.

Most of us don’t want to fail, not get it right, feel awkward, feel vulnerable, feel like a beginner, and not know the outcome. 

That’s understandable AND not being uncomfortable holds you back from the life you want. 

This week, I challenge you to do one thing that is uncomfortable and out of your comfort zone. 

Here are some ideas: get up on the other side of the bed, drive a different route to work, say hi to someone at work you normally don’t, try a new recipe, go to a workout class, call someone instead of text.

The first time you do it, you will feel uncomfortable. GOOD! That means you’re stretching and growing into the person you’re meant to be.

The second time you do it, you might still feel uncomfortable AND you’ll feel a bit more confident, I guarantee it.

“The hardest thing to do is leaving your comfort zone. But you have to let go of the life you’re familiar with and take the risk to live the life you dream about.” T. Arigo

Get comfortable being uncomfortable….it’s inevitable for growth, change, and becoming the person you’re meant to be.

The rowing machine beginner,

Devon