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It’s Time to Stop Abdicating and Own Your Amazement

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If you’d like to learn how to stop playing small so you can get anything you want out of life, sign up for the free 90-Day Master Class hosted by the founder of Addicted2Success.com, Joel Brown.


My favorite pastime is to sit outside a cafe, coffee in hand, watching people move, interact, and be with themselves. It is also what I do for a living. I am a listener, watcher, and instigator. My children know that I can easily strike up a deep conversation with a complete stranger and know the person’s full life story in less than 20 minutes. My children marvel at how I know a waitress at a favorite restaurant or barista at a local coffee shop. 

I have a lot of pet peeves, and one of them is when people play small. I could tell you dozens of stories of witnessing kids as young as 5 and humans as old as 92 who abdicate the brilliance, beauty, and amazement of their own beings. I’ve taken up the cause and dedicate my life to breaking that pattern.

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela

The truth about humility

Decades ago, I heard the best definition of humility. True humility is to be no more and no less than that which you are in your own right. Whether it is instinctive or learned, most of us know how to exist being “no more.” Whether it is based on the need for safety, security, or one million other reasons, playing small or playing it safe is woven into the fabric of most of our beings. Being “no less” is where the juicy parts flow. 

Take a moment, and let’s do a personal assessment together. Find a quiet space where you can be in a comfortable position. Bring intentionality into your body. If you are sitting, place the soles of your feet on the floor about hips distance apart. Feel the soles of your feet underneath you and feel the ground underneath the soles of your feet. 

Lift through the top of your head, not creating strain but intentionally stretch. Bring the palms of your hands to your knees or thighs and close your eyes or leave them open. If you leave them open, allow them to gaze softly down the bridge of your nose about three feet in front of you. Afterwards, make sure to breathe. Matter of fact, take a few breath cycles of breathing in and breathing out, as you do that say to yourself, “Breathing in I know that I am breathing in, Breathing out I know that I am breathing out.” 

Repeat those words with each cycle, perhaps making them shorter as you keep on with the breathing, “Breathing in, Breathing out,” or even “In, Out.” 

Notice your body. Allow yourself to be aware of how your body feels when you’re breathing. When you begin feeling more present in the moment, take an even deeper breath and ask yourself, “How do I want to show up in life?” It is okay if thoughts and your mental being want to answer. Also listen for deeper wisdom coming from your heart and body.

If you have extra time, reflect on where you have abdicated, sold yourself short, and played small. My hope for you in these moments is that those critical inner spaces don’t override just allowing yourself to be informed, try to hold off judgement and criticism. Take some longer breaths if you feel those sensations creeping into your being.

“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.” – Van Gogh 

For example, I abdicated several spaces in my life. Professionally, I allowed others to always be the “expert.” When I stepped into the space of owning my own strengths, I allowed myself to be no less. I set my sights on what I wanted to accomplish, took the necessary steps, and I’m reaching high for my own dreams and goals

What’s the very next step you can take? What is one thing you could do today, this week, or this quarter? Let yourself be no less than who you really are. Be more intentional about feeling present in your body and in the now. Release regret, acknowledge if there is any fear or doubt, and step forward.

Lastly, take a seat. Bring the backs of your hands to the tops of your knees. I want you to say “I am an AMAZEMENT,” two times in a regular voice, two times in a whisper, one time quietly to yourself, and one time as loud as you want. Bring your thumb across the pad of each finger as you speak the words and press down. Thumb to index finger, “I.” Thumb to middle finger, “AM.” Thumb to ring finger, “AN.” Thumb to pinky finger, “AMAZEMENT.” And repeat. Do this for the next couple weeks, notice the difference. Live and thrive in the knowledge of your own competency, your own amazement, be no less!

Let us know in the comments what you think once you try the technique described above!

Elle Miller is a trauma-informed C-IAYT yoga therapist and Body Advocate working to bring transformation into the workplace. Her speciality is  finding spaces that shift anxiety and burn out, zoom fatigue and disconnection. She created The Listening Project as a means to show  how subversive the very act of learning how to listen can become. Connect with her at Elle@LivingMangaliso.com to schedule your personal session or to find out more about our corporate offerings.

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The Surprising Secret About Growth and Change

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Innovation and change drive business growth, but there’s one piece about growth and change that business owners and entrepreneurs often overlook. It’s not the most fun or glamorous piece, but if you recognize and accept it, the payoff is huge. This is particularly crucial for self-employed business owners when there’s little to no separation between yourself and your business. When your level of success equates to how much you have personally developed. I call it Growth Jet Lag, and when you know how to navigate it, you set yourself up for lasting success. (more…)

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Practicing Self-Devotion: 3 Ways Towards a More Mindful and Compassionate You

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I can still hear the voices of my older relatives and my elementary school teachers telling me “be disciplined”, “keep at it”, to give time and energy towards what we want. As a young, impressionable child, I believed all those things because well, they made sense. They worked. And honestly, I felt like it’s the only way to flourish. (more…)

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Identifying Your Emotions is the Key to Exponential Happiness

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In the weeks and months following the heinous terror attacks of September 11, millions of Americans decreased their domestic air travel. As domestic flying decreased, car travel increased where a study found that people opted to drive longer distances rather than fly. Not taking into account 9/11, there were 331 airplane crash fatalities in the U.S from 1751 crash events. What’s interesting is there were 42,000 driving-related deaths in that same year. The number of deaths in air travel and road travel remained relatively consistent in subsequent years. (more…)

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Life

4 Life Changing Lessons I Learned by Starting a Podcast

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I had, and still have, a message I want to share with those that will listen. Heck, I am even willing to share it to those that are less than willing to listen. Therefore, I decided to start a podcast. A podcast focused on those that feel like the odds are stacked against them when it comes to venturing into those entrepreneurial waters. Those that have an inner belief that they can do it, but perhaps the people around them are less than enthusiastic about this new journey. 

Nonetheless, these Dark Horses, as I call them, buck the odds and run their own race to reach their own dreams and achieve their own goals. Little did I know that as I launched The Dark Horse Entrepreneur podcast, on a mission to teach others the lessons I have learned in business and in life, that I would be in turn learning even more lessons because of stepping out into the podcast arena. (more…)

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