My First Public Feedback
I remember back in 2008 I went to my first self-growth and
empowerment (3 day) workshop. The class of 30 or so was
divided into smaller groups of 5-ish.
My little group stood around me. We were supposed to take
turns observing the person standing in the middle of the circle
and offer constructive feedback about their energy or presence.
I didn’t feel all that self-conscious or anything when my turn
came. I was more curious than anything. What they said really
surprised me, “Angie, we get the overall sense that you are
No one had ever said that to me before, and it has always
stuck with me. Hiding from what, I wondered. They explained
that it was like I didn’t want to be seen or noticed.
Do you feel invisible?
Although that was 13 years ago, it still serves me to hide.
Maybe more so nowadays with all the bullying and harassment
going on. When someone disagrees with you, they cancel you.
Why NOT hide to avoid being canceled? The difference between
then and now is that I understand myself much better, and I give
myself permission to do this until I don’t.
The belief in “the other shoe is going to drop” was so strongly
ingrained in me that it feels difficult at times to truly relax and
trust that Life is supporting me.
I grew up with some trauma, living in a household where
my dad was abusive to my mom. I lost my close Aunt
Elaine when I was 6 and she was 16, and both of us were
born on 9/23.
These two events shaped my view that I can’t relax,
let go, and trust God has my back. Add to this the fact
I was born with a highly sensitive nervous system and “voila”
you get Untrusting Angie, afraid to let her guard down.
How does FEAR serve me? My first response is that
it keeps me from having to be responsible. But it feels
deeper than that.
It allows me to hide to feel safe. Though consciously
I know it isolates me, this is OK to my vulnerable Heart
which doesn’t want to be hurt by others and Life.
My Heart really doesn’t trust that I’ll be safe if I open
up so it keeps me invisible.
So though it also hurts to feel invisible, as if no one is
listening and I’m being rejected, my Heart believes it
would feel even worse to put myself out there, really
be seen, and then be rejected.
Can you relate to what I’m saying? Being safe is a big
deal. We all want that.
So how can we begin to feel more safe to be ourselves?
To feel safe while being truly seen?
I think it’s important to note that when I vulnerably
share things about my inner world, like limiting beliefs,
skewed perceptions of reality, and resulting unhealthy
habits, like people pleasing, over-eating, numbing out with
excess TV, disconnecting from others, etc., please don’t
feel sorry for me or feel tempted to rescue me.
At one time, I would have wanted your sympathy, but
now I share with you in the hopes you’ll see yourself in
my stories and it will be cathartic, just as it’s for me to
write about it.
I no longer feel like a victim to Life. I see things happening,
but they aren’t happening TO me. And ironically, by sharing
my heart with you in this way, I’m no longer invisible. And I’m
And if you are in a place of wanting to hide and be invisible,
that’s OK. It would be kind of interesting to know why, would
Simple Discovery Exercise
Try this. Put your hands over your heart and close your
eyes. Simply put your attention on your heart and your
feelings. Ask, “How does it serve me to hide, to be invisible?”
See/hear what pops into your head. Safety almost always
has something to do with it.
I’d love to hear what came up for you. Reply to this email and
let me know. Share a comment on the blog, and practice being
I’d SO appreciate you for doing that!
PS: Note that the women’s empowerment retreat, Let Go
Of What They Think, has been rescheduled to August 28 and 29
from 10am to 5pm Central time. Mark your calendars now.
It is FREE and exactly what you need if you want to break out of
the box of unhealthy people pleasing that leaves you feeling
drained and resentful and feel lighter, freer and more trusting.