In practice, I follow and learn from Master Sri Akarshana, Master Yogi and founder of IAmCreator. He held a live event where he spoke on lies and what his master taught him and what he has learned. He said, “Not everyone is born into this world with equal opportunities, skills and knowledge, but with the right training, anyone can achieve greatness and live with purpose.”
At some point, everyone lies. We do not lie to hurt the people in our lives, but inevitably it leads to manifestations of fear, doubt, and resulting chaos in our minds. This is a tough topic for me, as I am resolute never to lie to people. This has not always been in my favor, though. Some have seen my truth-telling as harsh or blunt and not an admirable trait. Since facing those reactions, I still seek to always tell the truth, but I have learned to present it with grace, humility, and compassion.
Hardest for many of us is being honest with ourselves. I have always been my worst critic. I have done more damage to myself by saying “I am not good enough,” or “I am not as good as so-and-so.” I have had to change the tone and presentation of my own self-honesty. Instead, I needed to say, “You can do this,” “You are enough,” and “You just need to practice more.” This is a journey I have been on for a long time. I have noticed more than a few of us struggle with self-honesty. Some call this Imposter Syndrome.
If you have ever had the opportunity to witness a presentation by Dr. Maria Walsh (now with DSM), you know she is an eloquent and effective speaker. It does not waver whether she is presenting to an international audience with 500+ people or on a Microsoft Teams meeting with three of us. Before I ever knew her or worked with her, I always admired how she commanded a presence and was such an effective communicator and how it seemed to come so naturally to her. One day as we were talking at work, I told her this. You know what she said? She invested time and money in coaching and speaking classes to become that way. It was not a gift she was born with, but through practice it became natural. A common work-mentoring conversation for Maria, it was a massive, eye-opening realization that was life-changing for me. It told me that I was enough. If I wanted to emolliate aspects of her style, I just needed to practice, like she did.
I may never have the same commanding presence as Dr. Maria Walsh, but I will have the flare of Dr. Casey Bradley. I will practice being the better version of myself, because life is about learning, and learning is growing… and if we stop growing, we stop living. Our limitations and shortcomings are only what we tell ourselves. Being honest with myself… I will never be over 5’ tall, but I can make what I have work. I prefer not to stand at a podium to make a presentation, but I am happy to walk the stage, able to see and read my audience, and where they can see more of me than my forehead.
So practice being honest with yourself. It’s a starting point. Then, let’s all work on being honest with everyone else in our lives, remembering to use humility and compassion in our tone and words.
“Not everyone is born into this world with equal opportunities, skills and knowledge, but with the right training, anyone can achieve greatness and live with purpose.”-Master Sri Akarshana