Summary: The reasons for fear and the decision to either speak out or shut up started long ago. If you ever wonder why so many women are bothered by self-doubt and afraid to speak out, keep reading. Here are some ideas that may surprise you. Men, as well as women, please pay attention.
Dear Dr. Sylvia,
I wonder if I am the only one who feels fear, I mean, hide under the bed fear, when Halloween approaches?
It is not rational, and sometimes I think I am just being swept away by all the hype about Halloween on social media.
I want an explanation if you can find what makes witches so prevalent and scary this time of year.
Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered
It is often vital to research and consider what happened in the past that is still impacting us in the present.
I found some fascinating information when researching my book “GUTSY: How Women Leaders Make Change (second edition),” I found some fascinating information. More than fascinating, it is frustrating. And also it’s vital for today’s women leaders.
It makes me want to stand up and yell, “Hey, everyone. It’s about time.”
Time for what? Time to eliminate the fear that stands in the way of success.
In addition, I want men and women to understand the cultural issues at hand. These past norms can keep you from showing your true talents.
In other words, it’s time to break away from past cultural fears that still create self-doubt and hold women back from playing full out.
Let me explain.
Why is there fear around the idea of what witches can do?
For example, have you ever been to Salem, Massachusetts? On Halloween? It’s a “madhouse” (pardon the pun) of psychics on every corner, ready to do readings. It’s also a great place to explore some of those cultural fears that still hold us captive.
Halloween is a busy time in Salem.
In addition, there is also a museum that examines one of the most enduring and emotional events in American history.
Moreover, if you can’t visit there, google Salem, Massachusetts. There is important information available to learn about the witch trials of 1692.
Further, did you know that many women, bona fide healers who worked with herbs and their intuition, were considered, well, witches?
Women can speak out or stay silent, and your life depends on your decision.
Subsequently, that was when a GUTSY, wise woman knew to keep her intuitive abilities undercover. It was either to stay silent or suffer an ugly death.
Back to the present time. Do you know that modern brain research indicates women have an advantage in sensing when something is about to happen?
To clarify, women have a high degree of intuition.
According to Judith Orloff, MD, neurotransmitters in the gut (as in GUTSY) can respond to environmental stimuli and emotions in the now — it’s not just about past experiences. When those neurotransmitters fire, you may feel the sensation of butterflies in your stomach.
That gut instinct plays a significant role in intuition by sending signals to your brain. That sixth sense is telling you something might not be right — particularly if you are sensing danger. Remember, it’s always better to be safe rather than sorry.
Stories from the past can embed to present ways of thinking
I always wonder why most of us ignore this internal warning system. Could it be because we want to fit in and stay safe? Is it perhaps a generational reaction? Could it be about remembering stories about ancestors who did not shut up and were burned at the stake? Is this what makes us wary?
In addition, let’s go back further and check out Greek legends.
Please pay strict attention if you or anyone you know is named Sandra or Cassandra.
Here’s the love story: the god Apollo fell in love with princess Cassandra. He gave her a gift; so far, a typical story. The present was more than a gorgeous bracelet or a trip to a lavish island; it was the gift of prophecy.
Now, this gift was non-refundable. Yet, when Cassandra did not get all mushy about Apollo, he became a scornful lover and wanted revenge. Yup, it happens all the time. So, the only thing this madman could do was to put a curse on her. He fixed it so no one would listen. Thus, when she warned that her beloved homeland, Troy, would be destroyed, no one would believe her.
Hummmm. Ancient Greece, witch trials, women getting brushed aside when they saw where things were heading; told to mind their own business.
Positive change comes about when you move beyond fear.
We all know the speed of change is constantly escalating, and we need to speak out. We are noNo more letting fear and self-doubt win.
Remember Sherron Watkins? She was a former Vice President of Corporate Development at Enron. She helped uncover that ugly scandal. As a whistleblower, she, to this day, discusses the isolation from talking truth to power and how important it is to speak out. Ask yourself, are you Gutsy or Bold?
It is only through talking truth to power. You must be brave. That is how we can continue to transform the patterns from the past. Karen Mangia is an excellent example of a Gutsy Woman; you can read all about her here.
That’s why I started my private Facebook Group, “Women Leaders Inner Circle.”
I want a safe place to discuss how to erase self-doubt.
This group is where you can stop listening to the inner critic that can paralyze even the most talented people.
It’s time to find the confidence to go bigger, go bolder, and go GUTSY.
Please join me and add your voice here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/womenleadersinnercircle/.
It’s about you, it’s about me, and it’s about time.
Here’s to your success,
PS I would love you to read my newest book, “Invisible STRESS (It’s Not What YOU Think!). It will keep you calm when all the goblins and witches show up for Halloween.