Judgment Day.

judgment-day1
judgment-day1

How often do we hold ourselves back because we’re afraid of how other people will react? We don’t get the tattoo we’ve been dreaming about for years.

We don’t wear the flouncy dresses or glittery headbands we really love.

We don’t sign up for online dating.

We don’t say what we really mean.

We don’t change directions even when we feel stuck.

We don’t talk to that exciting person across the room.

We don't publish that blog post.

We don’t take a chance.

We don’t make the leap.

Don’t. Don’t. Don’t.

We hold ourselves back because we’re terrified of being judged.

But the thing is, remaining paralyzed doesn’t stop us from being judged.

And maybe judgment isn’t such a bad thing after all.

When we focus on pleasing everyone, we practically make ourselves invisible.

We become bland and beige. And perhaps we’ll never offend someone, but we’ll never achieve greatness, inspire others, or change the world either.

judgment-day2
judgment-day2

Think about the people you most admire.

I’m willing to bet that, in the face of judgment, fear, & self-doubt, they took a chance on their wild dreams and created the world they wanted to live in.

People look up to them not because they hid from criticism but because they stood up boldly in the face of it.

I used to feel too shy to wear the things I really liked. But now I’m comfortable in sequins as daywear, tutus at the office, and bunny ears at breakfast. Sure I get a few dirty looks, but I also inspire a lot of smiles and have been blessed with many amazing conversations that started because someone wanted to tell me they liked my bedazzled outfit.

Similarly, as I’ve begin to step into my passions and speak proudly about the things that light me up, I’ve connected with so many people who are on the same journeys and from others who say I’ve inspired them to take more chances and love themselves more fully. How cool is that?

Being controversial, raising eyebrows, and even being on the receiving end of scorn means you’re doing something worth noticing. Not everyone will like you, but your tribe will get it. And they'll love you for it.

So what can you do to be a little bit bolder – a little more you – today?

I’ll be here cheering you on!

Photographs by Monica Baddar.