Here's the thing. When we have a "Nice Girl" or "Nice Guy" that is in the lead in our life and business, we are not in our power speaking our truth. We are busy pleasing others, trying to gain everyone else's approval, wanting to be liked, fearing judgment, getting all the societal norms right, having good manners, and acting Lovely. We have niced over our authenticity, niced over our honesty, niced over our soul expression, niced over our uniqueness, and niced over our power. This facade of niceness serves as a confusing barrier to real connection with others. After all, no one can trust a facade. We feel stuck in a Nice Box rather than feeling free to be who we really are and create authentic relationships with others.
As entrepreneurs, nice-ing over our true self leads to lovely yet ineffective marketing. We blend in. We chameleon to what we think others want us to be rather than standing up and out for who we really are and what we uniquely have to offer. As leaders, we hold ourselves back by being nice, never making the bold contribution we were born to make. Leadership requires truth not niceness. Our soul wants to be fully expressed not nicely repressed. By being nice we sacrifice truth, freedom, and soul-satisfying success.
I remember one of the life experiences that curated my Nice Girl facade. I wonder if you remember one of yours.
I started piano lessons in kindergarten and continued for 8 years. My mom wanted me to play. I wanted to please my mom. My piano teacher, Ms. N, was passionate. She was also a perfectionist and extremely critical. I remember the fear in my trembling fingers as I played the notes of the piece I'd been practicing, knowing that a wrong note would meet her distinct disapproval. Over and over she'd proclaim, "NO. That's not right. NO!" Each No would create more trepidation which would then lead to more wrong notes played. Her critique would escalate. I remember her standing over me yelling, "ARE YOU DEAF?!" More wrong notes. "ARE YOU DUMB?!" More wrong notes.
I remember crying on the way home from piano lessons. I remember crying on the way to piano lessons. Yet amidst this, I was taught to say "Thank You very much, Ms. N." I was taught to be NICE.
Recently, as I was going ever deeper in liberating myself from being Nice, this memory resurfaced. I used my imagination to re-experience the piano lesson while speaking my truth rather than being nice. I imagined being on that same piano bench again. But this time, when Ms. N yelled, I responded with equal power. "That is not okay with me." "It is not okay with me that you are yelling at me." "I am not deaf. I am not dumb. And it is not okay for you to yell these names at me." I envisioned the end of my lesson when my mom encouraged me to nicely thank Ms. N. "I will not thank you for being mean to me. I will not pretend that how you act is okay. It is not okay with me." Then I imagined getting into my mom's car. Instead of crying, I sat tall. "Mom, I will not return to Ms. N. If you'd like me to continue playing piano, we will have to find a new teacher that treats me the way I want to be treated." And, I would add now, "And Mom, I don't want to be a Nice Girl. I want to be a powerful, loving girl who knows how to speak my truth."
So I ask you...
~ Do you recognize that playing Nice was a coping strategy from childhood that is ready to transform?
~ Do you play Nice rather than speak your truth from your heart?
~ Do you stunt your full expression for fear of offending, repelling, stirring conflict, or inciting negative critique?
~ Do you hold yourself back to be more palatable and likable to others?
~ Is your business and soul-satisfying success compromised because of the Nice facade that clouds your authentic connection with others?
~ Is your marketing lovely yet ineffective because you blend in by being nice?
If you are Nice-ing your way through life and business, I invite you onto the liberating path of truth, freedom, and soul-satisfying success.
I have an opening for you in my highest quality private level coaching program called "Love Liberate LEAD." Customized entirely around the desires of your heart & soul for your next pivotal year of life and work, you will receive my most personalized support. Is it meant for you? If you know that your greater calling is asking you to make a dramatic shift--one that will involve transformation, liberation, and creation-- check out Love Liberate LEAD. This program supports you to love & liberate yourself -- letting go of what is misaligned in your life & business in order to embody your next level of aligned leadership, purposeful impact, desired income, and soul satisfaction.
May today be more than a Nice Day. May it be one where you give yourself the freedom to speak your truth and express your soul.