Let. Lisa. Out.
I first heard that more than 15 years ago. I don't remember the exact day, but I remember how I felt when I heard it. I was going through a particularly tough time and he just looked at me and said three simple words: let Lisa out.
And something shifted.
He was reminding me that I could only be happy when I was truly myself. That someone was my husband.
Let Lisa out. Those three words have stuck with me and I always tend to circle back to them. Whenever something just doesn’t feel right, when I’m trying to be what others want me to be, when I’m not feeling particularly happy, those three words have centered me. They have been a reminder to me when I wasn't being myself.
Being true to myself circled back to me a few years ago when I was laid off. For the first time since 8th grade, I didn’t have a job. I was a woman in her 50’s who was the sole support of my family with a son in college and a daughter starting high school.
I went through every kind of emotion ...
Sadness: Why didn’t they like me? What did I do wrong?
Shame and self-doubt: Maybe it’s just me. What’s wrong with me?
Anger: WTF? You laid ME off?
Fear: Oh my god, how the heck am I going to take care of my family?
Acceptance: Okay, let’s see what’s next for me.
Happiness: Yay! I get a few months off to relax. (Ha! Anyone who’s been laid off knows that relaxing isn’t part of the equation.)
Fear: Holy sh*t… what do I do?
Yep, every emotion. But mostly fear. Fear took control of me.
Since that day, I’ve done a lot of soul searching to conquer that fear. I stepped out of my comfort zone a lot. I did things I never thought I could do. The biggest thing was becoming a certified teacher of Let Your Yoga Dance, a wonderful practice that brings yoga off the mat and helps you tap into your energy centers through the beauty of dance and music.
Let Your Yoga Dance helped me rediscover my self-love, my power, my voice, and my joy.
I started channeling my fear and doubt into helping other women letting themselves out, helping them find their power, their voice and self-love.
I let myself become my true self in order to help other women do the same. And I discovered that when I stopped trying to prove myself, stopped hiding behind my shame over my weight, when I just said “f*ck it” and started being myself and helping other women do the same, the fear faded away and joy replaced it.
I “Let Lisa Out” and created Camp Atta Girl!, a retreat for women that combined my new-found love of Let Your Yoga Dance with my knowledge of positive psychology. I wanted to help women be themselves and give them an “atta girl!” for all the sh*tshows they’ve been through and for all they do for others.
And now those three not-so-little words — Let Lisa out — are what led me to launching this book. The next part of my being my true self journey. Maybe this book will help a few more women realize just how beautiful and wonderful they are.
During all this self-discovery, there was a quote that resonated with me. Not sure where I saw it, but like “Let Lisa Out” it always keeps coming back to me:
She doesn’t care what people think of her because she’s too busy. She’s got magical sh*t to do.
It's very freeing not caring what anyone thinks of me. It really does bring me joy.
Do I always feel this way? Hell, no. Launching this book has brought back this worrying-about-what-others-think-craziness” a lot. I will always be a recovering giving-a-sh*t-addict. But I’m better than I was last week and that’s enough.
So, here’s my book.
This book is more of the magical sh*t I have to do.
I hope it will help you come home to your true self and do what you’re being called to do.
I know that in the grand scheme of things, being laid off is minor. You may not be hiding behind weight. You may be dealing with other things such as divorce, family issues, an illness. Maybe, with everything that is happening right now in the world, fear is overtaking your life right now.
Or, maybe you just feel like you’ve lost that happy place inside you and not sure why.
Wherever you are and whatever you’re feeling, this I know for sure: you’re here for a reason.
Life is happening now and the world is calling out to you. You just need to listen.
It’s time to rediscover your power. Tap into your voice and moxie. Love who you are and start living fearlessly happy.
It’s time to let your happy out. It’s time to dare to be you and let YOUR true self out…
… because you’ve got magical sh*t to do, too.
Go. Do. It.
For more on my book, go to attagirlbook.com. Atta girl! ;-)