For Halloween this year, my kids are going to be Elsa and a banana wearing a crown (I’m not kidding here.)
But scroll through your Facebook feed, look at the other moms at the park, read blogs from your favorite business coaches and you’re likely seeing some of the best costumes out there. I’m not talking Halloween anymore. I’m talking day-to-day costumes. Here are some of my favorites:
- Big Bucks CEO—She knows how to make six figures in six months!
- Overnight Success—She just started her business and it’s thriving.
- Social Media Gem Mama—She volunteers, always has a Pinterest-worthy project to do with her kids, never uses screen time, and cooks nutritious, organic meals that her kids eat without complaint.
And my absolute favorite for the year?
Do It All Perfectly All The Time Mama—She has a thriving business, spends time with her happy kids who never throw a tantrum in the toothpaste aisle at Target, goes to yoga three times a week (and doesn’t wear her yoga pants the rest of the time). Her slogan: You can do it all!
When we look out at the “costumes” people wear, more often than not we’re the ones dressing somebody else up in success.
Our Hidden Fears
What you don’t see under any of these costumes is the fear. The fear that we’re not making enough money. The fear that nobody will sign up for our program or buy our product. The worry that we’re not giving our kids the time they need or the veggies or the skills or the fun. The anxiety that we can’t seem to get it all together even though everyone else out there is.
The fear that we are not good enough.
That fear is in all of us. It’s in that mama CEO who just launched her first program—and the one who just doubled last year’s sales. It’s in the mom whose kids behaved in a fancy restaurant and the one scraping her kid off the sidewalk during a meltdown. It’s in the mama thinking about starting a business and the one who’s been running hers for decades. It’s in Big Bucks CEO, Overnight Success, Social Media Gem, and The Do It All Mama, even if you don’t see it.
We’ve all got fear. We can’t get rid of it, so it’s time to tell it to, in Elizabeth Gilbert’s words, “sit in the backseat.” (Watch this interview if you want more on this topic)
One way to do that is to stop comparing our real selves to somebody else’s costume, whether it’s a mask they show the world, or the face we choose to see.
We see the results but not the hard work.
We see the success but not the previous failure.
We see the veggies that other mom’s kids ate, but not the ones they spit on the floor.
We see the moments where it all comes together, but not the ones where it all falls apart.
Look past the costume. Look past your own fear. I guarantee that while you are comparing yourself to somebody else and in your own mind coming up lacking, somebody is looking at you saying, “I wish I could start my own business,” or “I could never run a conference like that,” or “How the hell does she get her daughter’s hair braided Every.Single.Day.” You may think you’re showing the real you, but to somebody else, you’ve got the world’s most lifelike costume.
Focusing on someone else’s costume is a waste of time, and wearing our own mask every day is uncomfortable, exhausting, plus a waste of time. So let’s stop.
Today, let’s all take off our costumes and share or show something real about yourself, something you don’t usually share, something you worry you’ll be judged for. It can be what your desk really looks like or what you ate for breakfast (leftover birthday cake anyone?), Tell us what’s NOT working in your business right now—or tell us what makes your belly flipflop as a mom or CEO.
Want to hear mine? I’ll start the sharing over in the Mama CEO Club, where we can hang out…costume free. I’ll see you there.