If you have watched any TV recently, I’m sure you’ve heard clips of the song, “Let it Go” from the movie, Frozen. The song and movie was often mentioned on TV, but the only part that was ever mentioned was “Let it go…let it go…” I was puzzled about why the song was so popular with children since I hadn’t seen the movie. As a life coach, I often suggested to clients to “let it go,” but it didn’t seem to be the right context for kids.
My curiosity peaked, I googled both the movie plot and the song lyrics. What I discovered is that it is not only a wonderful message for children, but a great reminder for all of us.
The movie centers around Elsa (Snow Queen), who keeps her powers hidden because she is embarrassed and fearful of her talents. Eventually, she comes to realize that her special gifts are a blessing and not a curse. I imagine the song is played when she decides to toss her fears aside and lets it go…and shows off who she really is.
I’m sure I’m not alone in struggling with the confidence to feel comfortable with who I am and to accept what makes me unique. Although I had a musical talent, I envied those high school cheerleaders with their athletic ability. When I was older, I wished I was better with math, instead of being “good with people.” We always seem to want what we don’t have.
And then, we grow up wanting to please our parents, friends, teachers…and later, bosses—and often we bury our true opinions and talents. When are we going to please ourselves? If not now, then when? Here are a few suggestions to practice or begin “letting it go…”
Ask Dumb Questions. Have you ever kept a burning question to yourself because you were afraid everyone else knew the answer except you and that the others would surely think you were stupid? Many times, I’ve kept my mouth shut at a meeting, only to hear someone ask that very question and realized many others didn’t know either.
So instead of second and third-guessing yourself, just ask the question! If this seems too difficult, you can ease into by saying, “Perhaps this is a dumb question, but…” Invariably, no one will laugh (everyone can relate to that) and most of the time, you’ll be revered by asking a question that no one else had the guts to share out loud. And who knows, your question may be so insightful, it could change the direction of the issue being discussed.
Joy Working. Did you have a parent who nudged you into a “safe” career? I remember my mother suggesting I become a teacher because I would have my summers off. Although in my case, it turned out to be something I did enjoy. But there were other possibilities I did not pursue because they were more risky and I was fearful of not succeeding.
If you took a lie-detector test and was asked if your work brought you joy, would you pass it? If not, take some time and invest in yourself to discover what would. Life is too short to be miserable most of your 24 hours/day.
Own your gifts. When someone compliments you on something, do you… a) you play it down; b) share what wasn’t so perfect about what you did; c) mention someone who does it better. I am currently reading The Confidence Code (I’m sure it’ll give me a few articles for the future.) Perhaps nothing new to most of us, but women fall short in the confidence category.
And while you may not be “there” 100%, it may be a great time to practice, “act as if.” Act as if you were confident. If you complimented someone else, act as you’d like them to receive it. And remember that there is always someone better than you at just about any talent. But on the other side of that, remember there is always someone worse than you. Be happy with what you are blessed with, who you are, and how you can share the gifts YOU have. (And I promise I’ll try and practice what I am preaching here!)
“Let It Go” excerpts from Frozen (movie)…“Let it go, let it go! Can’t hold it back any more. Let it go, let it go!… Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know; be the good girl you always have to be…Well, now they know!….let it go, let it go, can’t hold it back anymore…let it go, let it go…I don’t care what they say.
Can’t get to me at all, it’s time to see what I can do, to test the limits and break through. No right, no wrong, no rules for me, I’m free. Let it go, let it go, the perfect girl is gone, here I stand in the light of day, let the storm rage on, I’m never going back, the past is in the past…”
I thought about becoming a Coach for about ten years–but everytime I did, I dismissed it — saying, “How could I ever do that?” “I don’t have enough confidence/skills etc.” “What do I know about starting my own business?” “How could I support myself?” I had a different excuse for every day.
Once I got laid off from my human resources position in Corporate America, I knew it was now or never. I decided to go for it. The idea of all I still needed to learn was overwhelming, but I hired an experienced Coach to help me–it was a great decision.
Looking back, I definitely under-estimated my abilities. As I began taking steps, the next steps became clearer and easier. I learned to look at the road in front of me and not get overwhelmed with what was down the road. And another thing that happened was I became more confident. “Geez, if I got to here, surely I could get to there.”
That first step was certainly a leap of faith, but it felt like the right thing to do! The two questions I now ask myself are: “At the end of my life, will I regret not going for it?” “What’s the worst that can happen?”
I utilize my intuition to tell me what to go for. It hasn’t let me down yet–I never leave home without it!