And then there’s the fear of being awesome….

And then there’s the fear of being awesome….

Fear of my potential. I keep thinking about this…..thinking and thinking and thinking about this…and when I really really STOP and JUST think about it, I always find myself really on-edge, sometimes even tearful. Sometimes my hands even start shaking a little when I think about trying to banish it. Because…I am learning…being who I REALLY want to be is my biggest fear. And I am learning what is behind that fear.

I am afraid of the pain that could come from living my potential.

I have a suspicion that this is one of your biggest fears too.

I am a hard worker. I am good learner. I have read HUNDREDS of books to teach me how to do SO MANY THINGS. I KNOW how to do SO MANY THINGS. I have spent thousands of hours practicing so many things, trying so many things, doing so many things. I have built incredible, real, lasting relationships with so many beautiful souls. I have tried a LOT of things…and sometimes those things have been so successful…sometimes those things have lead me to falling flat on my face.

I am capable of so much. So are you. It is incredible, really…just how much we are each capable of. Yet…..we hold back.

I am scared to do so many of the things I am capable of doing. Do you know why? This is really such a dumb reason, but I am going to own it. I am even going to step out of the shame and fear of this realization and tell you what it is.

I am thinking this might be holding you back too and I just want to create a revolution where we all hold hands across the world and stop this nonsense.

Today, I am done. In the post after this one, I am going to proclaim to you what my biggest dreams are and I am going to just banish my fear of proclaiming those dreams out loud. I am going to be ok with being WHO I REALLY WANT TO BE, I am going to finally be ok with living my potential. Will you PLEASE join me????? Let’s all do this together.

But first…that big fear:

Here it is….I know the thoughts that cross my own mind when I am feeling weak and defeated and then see another woman who seems to have it all together. Sometimes, my thoughts are unkind… I have seen what women do to each other when they feel threatened, or jealous or whatever that feeling is. I have even seen women go to the ends of the earth to try to destroy each other. As women…….we have SUCH ENORMOUS CAPACITY to reach into our own hearts and into the hearts of others…this is the great magic we have to heal the world. BUT WITH THAT SAME CAPACITY…we can reach in and destroy each other, BECAUSE we know how to reach all the way in…….we must use this skill SO SACREDLY, with such wisdom and love….

Seems like we only think it’s bad to judge DOWN on someone. By this, I mean….we slap our own hands when we judge someone who is down on their luck…we think…I must help them, I must be kind…I must not judge. I must not judge another who has an addiction or who made wrong choices or who is mentally sick or whose husband left her alone. We stop what we are doing and we decide to be kind.

Why then… we sometimes think it is ok to judge UP. By this, I mean….we judge someone for being successful…we judge someone for ALWAYS being happy….for having great discipline at the gym and with their diet, for having great financial success, for having things together….for having a successful art career or for having a beautiful marriage…..for being a stickler with their boundaries or for putting their beliefs and values first and foremost, especially if those beliefs and values differ from our own. Why is it ok to judge UP?

Well, we all know that it’s not. And…I am going to stop. I have been trying really hard to stop for a long time. I have been trying so hard not to be envious of others…not to draw my own conclusions about someone else’s choices….not to ever fall into the very mistaken and very destructive belief that if we tear another person down, we somehow elevate our own self.

We elevate ourselves by elevating others. THAT is where the magic is…some kind of unseen hands come and lift us ALL up when we are lifting each other up.

As I was writing this post….a song came on my Pandora station that I have never heard before…don’t you love when that happens? I heard some of the words and had to stop and google the lyrics…it is THE PERFECT ending to this post.

No Envy No Fear
Joshua Radin

Some are reaching few are there, want to reign from the heroes chair,
some are scared to fly so high, well this is how we have to try:

Have no envy and no fear, have no envy, no fear

Brother brother we all see, you’re hiding out so painfully,
see yourself come out to play, a lovers rain will wash away

Your envy and your fear,
so have no envy, no fear

When your sister turns to leave, only when she’s most in need,
take away the cause of pain, by showing her we’re all the same.

Have no envy and no fear, have no envy and no fear

Every day we try to find, we search our hearts and our minds,
the place we used to call our home, can’t be found when we’re alone

So have no envy, no fear, have no envy and no fear

Let’s be happy for each other. Let’s cheer each other on. Let’s help each other.

Most of all….let’s do EVERYTHING in our power to live our unique and divine potential. Even if it’s scary….even if the weak and defeated come after us and try to cut us off at the knees…let’s reach down and lift them up too…let’s not be afraid.
Let’s go out and be totally awesome.

I making my plan right now. I am getting ready to do things I have always been scared to do.

I am cheering for you ALL THE WAY.


  1. janet says

    wow, I love your catch phrase judging up. I have been guilty of doing this until I was the person who was up and it happened to me. then I got to see both sides of the coin. thanks for opening the discussion and for making it clear. thank you. now I will ask god to show me why we all do this so I can help myself and others. thank you melody. thank you..

  2. Lois says

    Wow! Awesome! This really spoke to me. I am SO guilty of this. I try very hard not to judge those who are down and ou,t but I find myself putting down others who are happy and making something of themselves, trying hard, being faithful. They are what I want to be. Thank you for inspiring me to change that behavior. I have a mother-in-law who only sees the good in people. When you complain about someone, she finds something good to say about them. I think instead of criticizing her for that, I will try to be more like her. I want to be happy for those who are happy. And try to get there myself. Thank you for writing this.

  3. Sabrina K says

    Thank you Melody for your courage!
    On so many occasions throughout my life I have felt the judgement because I had ‘too much joy jam’. My lightness of being was resented and over time I began to believe that I was wrong because they believed I was wrong. Thankfully, I’m learning not to judge them and to also be brave enough to just be me. Yes, I want to support you and love you and help you be the best that you can be. Thanks Melody for having created and designed a place where we can all feel safe to say some of the things we think and feel. A place where we can empower our souls and therefore be able to rest more easily!

  4. Niki in Baltimore says

    I have had people tell me that i am too cheerful.
    Too cheerful???
    This post really touches on the negativity we can have towards each other.
    I agree to be with you instead of against you.
    I agree to help and support not only every woman, but every person i meet.
    Thanks for building a place where we can find strength in each other to be better people.

  5. Heather says

    I ran across this today and this is EXACTLY the kind of thing I needed to find. Thank you so much for the encouragement and wisdom…and these glorious happy tears in my eyes that know I am about to embark on such an incredible journey and NOTHING can hold me back.

  6. Janie says

    It’s exactly how I feel and have felt so many times in my life! Why can’t we all just get along! At times I have thought it was a cultural thing but no, it affects every woman regardless of age, race or social status. We need to sincerely cheer each other UP during those GOOD times we have and not just during the bad ones:)

  7. fran says

    A friend I respect and love, has repeatedly said to me”Don’t compare your insides to someone else’s outsides”
    I think that sums it up for me.

  8. says

    You have no idea how much I needed to hear this today. I am brilliant at what I do, so scared of failing but it makes sense that I am scared of my own brilliance.

  9. says

    Thank you so much for this post. It was exactly what I needed to hear. I have shared some of your thoughts over at my blog. I hope you don’t mind! Thanks again!

  10. says

    This is EXACTLY what I’ve been trying to express to my close friends for the past few months and I could never put it into the right words. You did it beautifully and you have inspired me!! I am wondering if you would mind me quoting you on my blog and then linking back here? I want others to be inspired and understand where I’m coming from :) Beautiful, beautiful!!!!!

  11. Diane Costanza says

    I relate t this sooo much! I vow to stop judging up and to only cheer the woman next to me!


  12. says

    Yes Melody, you do read minds, and hearts. I was just cleaning up my bookmarks, this site popped up almost by itself, and I read. And if I wasn’t so tired, I’d probably be crying right now. It’s as if I found this site all over again, and its full of 50 somethings like me, although girls of any age need to be brave. I’ll be back tomorrow to check more of this out, and I think this might be just what I need, even if I can’t afford to go to camp !

  13. Linda says

    OMG! Melody, you are able to read our minds!!!!!!! I can’t believe how wonderful and BRAVE it is of you to write this post! Thank you, thank you, thank you! You just acknowledged the elephant in the room;D

  14. basicelements2fireclay says

    I feel such a connection to all of the women here. No matter where we are at on our path we can come together and support each other. I have tried over the last few years to stop the judging (either Up or Down) that comes from my ego, but sometimes that ugly green monster does pop up. But I will pledge to be on the look-out even more for this negative part of me.
    I think we judge-up when we think that there is only so much to go around. If “she” suceeds at her (art, writing, life, marriage, business) the there is no place for me at the top. Which isn’t true because this world has unlimited possiblities. Look around at all that has been created, there is enough room for all of us. When we help each other and support the people around us it only makes us stronger.
    I also have a fear of suceeding, I have seen successful people that are not happy with there lives and growing up around it has made me fearful of it.. So I have been poor and mostly happy for awhile. But I don’t want to live this way anymore. I can be sucessful and be happy can’t I? I don’t want to hold in the power of what I can be anymore, I want to let my light shine. I know that other people have done it and have helped other people, I want to do the same. I just get SO stuck in my own head. I need to finish my SR lessons and use the tools that I have learned.
    I have been hurt by women I have trusted. I let someone in and trusted them for so long, then they used my fears against me to tell me I was weak. It’s not the first time, but you keep trusting -don’t you? I don’t want to close my heart because I have been hurt, if I do, I cannot help myself or anyone else.
    So I trust again, you women who have trusted me, can I take your hands and together we build a strong chain that cannot be broken and that can change the world? All equal, all different, all strong individuals, even stronger together. -thank you all -stacey

  15. says

    Since a recent tragedy in my life, I have had a very hard time feeling joy for other people’s happinesses. I am really trying very hard to get past that, and am hoping that it will diminish with time. Soul Restoration has been a big help along the way. Thank you.

  16. krissi57 says

    Wow…you really struck a nerve with this post Melody! I am 53 and on a huge journey of discovery. A journey to heal after the death of my husband. I am reaching out and grabbing a dream. One I thought was impossible to accomplish. I have huge fears… I am walking among professional artists and that internal voice keeps saying “You are not good enough… You will never make it…” I have discovered this week that I am good enough. I am worth fighting for. I am blessed. Thank you for this post… I will happily join with you on this journey !!! I so love Brave Girls Club and can’t wait to join you and many other beautiful souls for Soul Restoration. I’m so ready… to be BRAVE… face those fears,iinsecurities and fly !!! Hugs… Kris

  17. Frankie Weber says

    You either approach life with Fear or Love…..unfortunately fear has ruled my life….I am going try LOVE for awhile.

  18. Lanette says

    Hi-5’ing you on such a great article and for your words of wisdom and leadership – I’ll be adding your “Elevation Thoughts” to my book tonight – wahooo !! I love reminders that come along to get me back on track : )

    I once had the privilege to hear Donna Brazille cover the same topic.

    A Quote from her: “Failure. It doesn’t exist. ‘Failure’ is just what happens when we lose perspective. I thought I’d failed when I got fired as deputy field director for the Dukakis campaign. If I’d known then that I NEEDED to go through that in order to be READY to manage the Gore campaign, I would’ve seen it for what it was: an unavoidable low point, no more or less important than the experiences I call successes.”

    Thank you Melody for sharing a piece of your heart with us <3 !!

  19. says

    That is just how I feel today too. We are awesome. I think we just don’t tell ourselves often enough. We need to cheer on each other. Encouragement can go along way and has a way of bouncing back at us.
    Thank you for this post.

  20. says

    There is not a single person in the world who can take the beauty of who you are away from you. For most of my life the recognition of something I have accomplished has come with a, “That’s nice. However, you should have….” , or, “I would have done it this way….”
    You can fill in the blanks. Everything came with a judgement. So there were times when I stopped- everything. If I’m not doing things well enough, why would I bother doing them at all, right?
    That’s all changed over the past year and a half. It never really occured to me before but, being ME is enough. It isn’t so much what I do, it’s who I am that matters. The things that we do are just extensions of who we are. Everyone has incredible potential within them, and sometimes they just need a little help finding it. I did. Tapping into that potential makes you do brave things. Scary things. Things that you would never in a million years think of doing. Pushing yourself to the outer limits of your comfort zone and finding out that it’s bigger than you thought it was afterall. Once we see that potential in ourselves, it is easier to see, and appreciate, it in others. It is then we begin to travel the road together.
    I am grateful that, on this enormous, winding road in cyber space, our paths have crossed. :)

  21. Holy Schmidt says

    Melody: I heard you stop yourself and cover up your next big dream on the last video and smiled because I know what that’s like. This post really speaks to me – I get that tendency and the fear of success and of living up to my full potential. It’s my stopping-place fear. Failure is OK – it’s safe, been there, done that. But success….that doesn’t feel safe, I fear turning the stage light switch on and never being able to turn it off again.

    And this post spoke to me because I’m reading Pema Chodron’s work now and her Buddhist teachings on the four limitless powers – love, compassion, sympathetic joy (cheering brave girls on when they are UP and celebrating), and equanimity. It takes a whole lot of bravery to focus on these 4 things.

    I Love the idea of a movement geared towards cheering on all our Hey Sister, Soul Sisters – Yes to that!

  22. says

    At 54 years old, I too am learning to be a “Brave Girl”…Life has so many interesting bends in the road, and challenges that at times seem so overwhelming. But..for some of value the importance of baby steps is essential…Thank you for your wonderful post..Until we find the freedom within ourselves to reach out and encourage others….We will never know the true JOY and FULLFILLMENT that comes by embracing someone else and encouraging them in their dreams….Enjoying the Journey.

    • says

      grace October 31, 2012 – 4:02 am I was moved by this message I beielve in GOD of course it this strengthened my belief that trulyHE is there for anyone who needs or seeks help and even to those who never beielve in HIS existence. Regret on living a life like what Dr.Teo had But regret of not having GOD in his life while living it. Actually I admire Dr.Teo for accepting his faults and having the courage to share it to us .My deepest sympathy to the family and friends for your loss but I know he is with our creator now and happy to have renewed his faith in HIM. May your good soul rest in peace.

  23. says

    This is so beautifully put! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve thought “Why can’t we embrace this together?!?!”. Thank you for posting this and I know that I will make an extra effort to apply this to my life. I wish more women would do the same.

  24. says

    I have to chuckle as I’m wondering what could be more brave and wonderful than what you’re already doing. You go girl! And I will try and remember… I know FOR SURE that there are a few people I regularly associate with who judge UP in terms of what they think of me. Jealousy hurts. It really does. We as women can feel it. I feel badly when I know people are putting themselves down because they don’t do X like I do. It makes me not want to be great at all, for fear of hurting their feelings…for fear of the ugliness that comes when they can’t contain their jealousy anymore. I am saddened to think that I am frequently also on the jealousy end of things. I will try so much harder not to be.

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