The Size of Us

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The Size of Us

I was in spin class and the instructor said this: “I know I am a lot. I’ve been told that my whole life. But you know what? I’m enjoying it! I won’t try to be less for you.”

I am spinning, spinning and I am thinking. “Wow.” I have also been told I am a lot. It never occurred to me to have fun with it. God; what would that be like?

woman hiding behind folderAnd I wonder. How many of us tone it down for other people? Can we stop now? Because here’s the thing. There’s a price to pay for this.

I have shaved off parts of myself to be smaller for other people. Even with all of the training and coaching and self-development I have undergone, I will still be quieter, say less, not tell my full truth so that other people feel okay around me.

What is “Appropriate”

And actually, wtf?! I give parts of myself away. And when it is time to be big, I am embarrassed. When it is time to step in front of a room or love somebody, I get scared and I do it in a smaller way. So people don’t get all of me. They get a lot of me. They get what I am not too scared to give. They get what is “appropriate.”

I am thinking about “A Return to Love,” this poem by Marianne Williamson that says, “Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our greatest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” “There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so other people won’t feel insecure around you.”

It is scary to see how big we are. It’s not just me who is big. It’s you too. It’s not just the extroverts. It’s the introverts as well. It’s every single one of us. We are meant to be change agents. All of us. “It is not just in some of us; it’s in everyone.” (A Return to Love)

What now?

Become aware. Where are you shrinking? And then commit to the change. It will be better for you and for the people around you as you offer them permission to be themselves as well. So do it!

Be big.

Be you.

Brave woman_cape_hand up

About the Author

Cami McLaren

Cami McLaren

is the owner of McLaren Coaching. She has been coaching attorneys and management since early 2008. She wrote a book, published by the American Bar Association, "Coaching for Attorneys: Improving Productivity and Achieving Balance." She coaches attorneys and managers one-on-one, and provides in-house training designed to improve productivity and bring accountability to the organization.

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