As you read through this book [Girl, Stop Apologizing], as you’re trying to figure out the person you want to be, remember the journey starts with the goal. It starts with finding the direction you want to go in and then figuring out how to build the habits that will get you there.
IT'S OK TO FOCUS ON PERSONAL GROWTH
Truly one of the best moments of my career in the last five years was a phone call I had with a member of our community. This group is made up of millions of women all over the world (and a few good men) who hang out with us on social media. We were on with one of our members, asking her about her experience attending our first conference. The very first year we put on the Rise conference, we truly had no idea what we were doing. I only knew that I wanted to create an opportunity for women to come together and hear wisdom and ideas that would give them the tools to change their lives, while also providing an opportunity for them to hang out with a community of like-minded women. So we were on a call with one of the women who was brave enough to come to our first event to hear about her experience. On the call this woman mentioned sheepishly that she only went to the conference because she was hoping I would sign her copies of my fiction books. She’d never focused on personal growth before.
“I never knew I could have a goal,” she told us. “I’m a mom and a wife, and I never thought about focusing in on something just for me.”
To be totally honest, I was stunned by this revelation. Stunned because, well, I am a very goal-oriented person (as if you couldn’t tell) and it had honestly never occurred to me that not everyone was. Oh, sure, I get that not everybody leaps out of bed at 5:00 a.m. like a jack-in-the-box as I do, but I just assumed that everybody was always working toward something. And the fact that someone could come to one of our events and leave understanding that she as a woman had value for herself, not for what she could provide to other people—not for her kids, not for her husband, not for her mom, but for herself—was eye-opening to me.
She discovered that she was allowed to have a dream and a desire and a goal, and, holy crap, that was amazing, and it made me so proud of our company. But it also served as a lesson to me and made me understand that there are those of you who don’t allow yourselves a goal or even a dream. It makes my heart ache. Not because I’m overdramatic (though I am that most definitely) but because growth is happiness. Truly. Having something to work toward gives us purpose. Achieving new milestones, even little ones, gives us a sense of accomplishment and pride.
YOU’VE GOT TO HAVE A GOAL
All living organisms, relationships, and businesses are either growing or they’re dying. Period. If you find yourself going through life without anything to work toward or aim for, it’s no wonder that you feel like your life is living you instead of the other way around. I don’t care if you’re the CEO of a Fortune 500 company or a stay-at-home mom—you’ve got to have a goal. It can be a personal goal you set for yourself to get in shape or save money or own a home or build a business or save your marriage. It can be anything at all. Just know that you’re supposed to have one, and even if you’ve never been able to focus in on one before, you can develop the habit and you can become the kind of person who is, well, any damn thing she wants to be.
Excerpted with permission from Girl, Stop Apologizing: A Shame-Free Plan for Embracing and Achieving Your Goals by Rachel Hollis, copyright Rachel Hollis.