As a self-proclaimed audiophile, I find that music has a way of touching people in profound ways. While listening to Harry Styles’ latest album recently, one particular song caught my attention – ‘Matilda.’ It’s a beautiful song that resonates deeply with me on many levels, but one line stood out, “You don’t have to be sorry for doing it on your own.” As a woman and an entrepreneur, this line spoke directly to me and reminded me of the importance of self-advocacy.
Women Still Struggle for Equity
Female founders face unique challenges when it comes to starting and growing a business. It’s not easy, and many of us know it firsthand. We have to work twice as hard to secure funding and face discrimination in male-dominated industries. Not to mention juggling the responsibilities of work and family. It can be overwhelming, and it’s no wonder that many of us feel guilty for choosing the road less traveled in entrepreneurship.
But the truth is that you don’t owe anyone an apology for pursuing your dreams. As Harry Styles so eloquently reminds us, we don’t have to apologize for doing it on our own. We deserve to follow our gut instincts and pursue our own goals, even if it means leaving a secure corporate job or leaving our children at home. Our happiness and fulfillment matter, and we owe it to ourselves to chase our passions.
The Success Domino Effect
In today’s world, it’s more important than ever for women to break through barriers and achieve success in business. We can do it by embracing self-advocacy and owning our decisions. When we stand up for ourselves and our goals, we inspire other women to do the same.
Let me tell you about my incredible friend, Danielle. She is a successful podcast host, a two-time international best-selling author, and a project development consultant with an unwavering dedication to supporting other women in business.
Before all of that, though, Danielle was diagnosed with skin cancer several years ago. In her moment of true reflection, she came face to face with the reality that she wanted far more out of life than being a stay-at-home mom. Her courage to bravely take steps to honor her own dreams and pursue an entrepreneurial path, especially alongside facing all of the emotions that came with dealing with medical complications, has long inspired me. I believe that we can make a difference in our communities and the lives of others by pursuing our dreams. We don’t have to apologize for being ambitious or wanting more out of life than we currently have. AND had she not decided to advocate for herself as an individual, not just a wife and mother, hundreds of women today might not have started their businesses without her support.
Letting Go of Guilt and Learning to Self-Advocate
The decision to choose to pursue our happiness and self-expansion can be complicated. Years of conditioning and unrealistic standards can make us feel guilty for taking a path that others may not have approved of or sometimes cutting ourselves off from people who wouldn’t have allowed us to get where we wanted/needed to go.
I have gone through a lot of therapy, and personal development that has just now, in my 30s, helped me start learning to let go of my concern with family and societal expectations. It is obvious why I was drawn to the lyrics of ‘Matilda.’ I know in my heart that I would never have been able to reach my full potential if I wasn’t an advocate for myself.
“Whenever I feel called into something new I know it’s an experience that’s going to stretch me and take me to the ends of myself. As I move into that newness and bump into the rigid bounds of my comfort zone, I can immediately sense the fear that arises. That fear is countered only by knowing how limited I am by staying inside those bounds. Each time I push beyond those bounds and acknowledge the fear, I can ask it to step aside and continue pursuing something I want,” Danielle said. “And each time, this pursuit ultimately leads me to a fulfilling expansion of self-definition—a new version of me. Looking back on those times, I see the source of the deep well of happiness that has sprung up in my life as I’ve sought more and more of that fulfillment, and I can no longer ignore the importance of seeking fulfillment by expanding my sense of self.”
Do It for Yourself
If you were waiting for a sign to go bigger, follow your fire, or take a leap—this is it. Stop waiting for permission to be who you want, and go follow that internal spark inside of you and become the confident, empowered version of yourself that you know is within reach. And pop in your Air Pods so that Harry can be there to encourage you along the way.
Are you tired of feeling undervalued and overlooked for your skills and accomplishments? Do you struggle with self-promotion, lacking the confidence to truly showcase your worth?
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Find out more about Danielle Mendoza and how she can help you activate your message in a BIG way by putting your story into a book here.