Every single day I help motivate and encourage dozens of other people to find their power and to believe in themselves. Every single day I believe in them, even when they don't. I know that they are capable of incredible things. I know that I will celebrate their success with them one day, as long as I can help them hold onto that belief. I don't always have the ability to believe in myself the way that I believe in others. I don't always have the ability to see myself the way that other people see me. Before anyone can officially pitch me/ market me and my brand.... they need to hear back from me. They need to see what I bring to other peoples lives, and how I have the ability to change the world. That's where I freeze. I am literally frozen. Am I important? Do I matter? Can I risk failure? Again?!?! Do people need me? Am I replaceable? My brain is flooded with doubt. Last week I worked on some really personal things and I said something outloud that I don't usually admit to. I said something that made me cry and made me feel all the things I don't want to feel and i don't want to deal with. It was one sentence. "I wish I could see me the way other people see me. My early life stays with me, and in my mind.... sometimes I'm still the girl who will never amount to anything." Whoa. That cuts like a knife in my heart. I know where that comes from. I've spent my entire life working on it. Poverty, domestic violence, the foster care system... they all helped hardwire my brain that way. I know that after surviving that, and having the odds stacked against me to repeat that cycle, I broke it. I know that makes me the exception, not the rule. I have spent my entire life doing things in spite of how I was raised, not because of how I was raised. My children are loved, cherished, and safe. That already changes the world. All three of them were with me the day I graduated from college with a degree in Psychology, despite having been a pregnant high school drop out at one point in my life. The reason I'm sharing all this is because, well first.... I'm a writer and a story teller. It helps me! I'd like to believe that it inspires and helps other people too. I'm also sharing this so that it loses it's power over me. I've let it have that power for too long. I was 14 and living in the home of two professors at a local college in my town, as their foster kid when I heard that sentence that stays with me. "You're bad, and girls like you don't grow up to amount to anything. You should feel lucky we took you in." I want to move forward today, and forever, in spite of people like that. I also wanna do it for every other little girl (and boy) who is being told things like that right now. You will change the world! Not the people telling you that.... they won't even matter in a few years. But you!! You will do incredible things, even on days when you doubt yourself. Take your power back!