As my parents visited me this weekend, a bittersweet realization washed over me – this gathering might mark one of the final opportunities to capture cherished family photos. As many of you may already know, my mother has been bravely battling Alzheimer’s. Witnessing the effects of this disease has been a heart-wrenching journey. Determined to create lasting memories, I took her shopping for our family photo shoot. Amidst the aisles of the store, a flood of childhood memories rushed through my mind as I helped my mother slip into a jacket. I was transported back to those precious mornings when she would diligently dress me for school.
One particular ritual stood out in my memory – the rolling up of our sleeves. With our petite frames, finding jackets that fit us perfectly was a challenge, but it became a shared adventure that brought us closer together.
At that moment, I realized that our roles were now reversed. Once upon a time, it was my mother who took care of me, meticulously rolling up my sleeves. But now, as life had unfolded, it was my turn to be there for her. With deep tenderness, I gently rolled up her sleeves, embracing the opportunity to reciprocate the care and love she had bestowed upon me. With a lump forming in my throat, I said, “Remember when you used to roll up my sleeves before school?”
A gentle hush filled the air as my mother quietly replied, “Oh yes, Honey.” Her soft response carried a profound weight, acknowledging the shared memories that now resided in both our hearts. As tears started to well up in my eyes, I bit my lip as hard as I possibly could to distance myself completely from the grip of sadness.
The following day, I found a quiet moment to sit my mother down and assist her with removing her mascara, a task that had become challenging for her. As I delicately worked to remove her makeup, my father stood by her side, offering support and holding her hand. Many makeup wipes later, a moment occurred that will forever remain etched in my memory. He looked at her and spoke with heartfelt sincerity, “You know what I see, honey? A beautiful woman.”
I struggled to hold back tears, biting my lip in another attempt to distance myself from my emotions completely.
THE IMPORTANCE OF ACKNOWLEDGING EMOTIONS
These experiences, along with a recent Jenna Kutcher podcast, led me to contemplate a profound question: When was the last time you asked yourself how you really feel? Many times our friends ask, “How are you?” But isn’t it a totally different question when they ask, “How are you, really?”
Often times we feel we have to rush through our feelings and say we’re fine. We’re afraid of facing the answer because that means facing whatever emotion we’re running from. When we rush through our emotions and dismiss them, we deny ourselves the opportunity to address the underlying issues causing those emotions. By avoiding our true emotions, we create a cycle of avoidance and detachment, which can prevent us from fully engaging with our experiences and relationships.
EMOTIONS IN BUSINESS
In the context of real estate, it’s often believed that emotions have no place in business. However, the truth is that emotions are an integral part of being human, and they inevitably impact our professional lives. When we detach from our emotions and try to separate them from our business, we deprive ourselves of valuable insights and hinder our ability to connect authentically with clients.
AS A FEMALE IN BUSINESS
As a female in business, there can be additional pressure to suppress emotions in order to appear strong and professional. However, by hiding our pain and denying our emotions, we are doing ourselves a disservice. Emotions are not a sign of weakness; they are a natural part of the human experience. By embracing our full selves, including our emotions, experiences, and unique qualities, we can bring a deeper level of authenticity, empathy, and creativity to our business.
BRINGING OUR WHOLE SELVES TO OUR BUSINESS
When we bring our whole selves to our business, a remarkable transformation occurs. We become more than just professionals going through the motions; we become authentic and empowered individuals. By embracing our emotions, experiences, and unique qualities, we unlock the power to make informed decisions, build meaningful connections, and create an environment that supports the well-being of ourselves and those around us. This integration of our true selves into our professional lives paves the way for a healthier, more fulfilling journey in the business world.
DISCOVERING OUR TRUE SELVES
To embark on this journey of self-discovery, I invite you to answer a series of questions instinctively and honestly. Imagine yourself back in high school, facing multiple-choice tests. Remember that instant when you looked at the answer choices and immediately felt a strong intuition about the correct one? Tap into that instinct as you tackle the following questions:
– What inspires you?
– What makes you want to rage?
– What makes you laugh?
– What makes you cry with joy?
– What makes you feel the most empowered?
– What do you fear the most?
– What is one problem you wish you could solve?
– What do you wish to create in the world?
These questions will help you peel back the layers and reveal aspects of yourself that may have gone unnoticed.
Through this process, you may discover the need for laughter, the importance of acknowledging your accomplishments, or the acceptance of sadness. They will provide insight into your values, desires, and fears. You’ll gain clarity on what inspires you, what triggers your anger, what brings you joy and tears of happiness, what empowers you, what you fear the most, what issues you care about, and what you aspire to create in the world. Understanding these aspects of yourself is crucial for personal growth and a greater sense of self-awareness.
DAILY CHECK-IN ROUTINE
I also encourage you to create a daily check-in routine, even if traditional journaling isn’t your style. It’s a simple yet effective way to engage in self-reflection. Over time, you’ll start noticing patterns and trends through these regular check-ins.
Your daily check-in should consist of three key questions:
1. What excited me today?
2. What exhausted me today?
3. What did I learn today?
Daily check-ins allow you to develop a deeper understanding of yourself. Identifying what excited you can bring a sense of joy and fulfillment; while recognizing what exhausted you helps you identify potential stressors or areas that require self-care in your business. This practice promotes emotional balance and allows you to address any negative patterns or triggers. Regularly asking yourself these questions helps you stay connected to your goals and aspirations. By evaluating what excited you and what you learned, you can assess whether your daily activities align with your long-term objectives.
In embracing our emotions, we embark on a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. By acknowledging our feelings and allowing ourselves to be vulnerable, we unlock a deeper level of authenticity, empathy, and creativity in our professional and personal lives. Suppressing our emotions only serves to limit our potential and hinder our connections with others.
So, let us dare to ask ourselves the important question, “How are we really doing?” and make space for our true emotions. Let us peel back the layers, gain self-awareness, and create a roadmap that aligns with our authentic selves.
By embracing our emotions, we not only honor our own humanity but also cultivate a healthier, more fulfilling professional life where we can forge genuine connections, make informed decisions, and contribute meaningfully to the world around us. Just as life is meant to be lived, emotions are meant to be felt.