When I was a little girl I KNEW I could be Wonder Woman.
One night, I decided to make it happen. I created a Wonder Woman headband out of construction paper. I crafted armbands that would deflect bullets. And I wrote “Wonder Woman” on a T-shirt.
When I looked in the mirror, I was disappointed to see “Wonder Woman” backwards in the reflection. I stood there for several minutes trying to deconstruct what could’ve gone wrong. I thought others would see the same backward image.
I worked so hard on my outfit and I was annoyed that I had to start over. But I went back and painstakingly re-wrote “namoW rednoW” so it would look right in the mirror.
Satisfied that I had assumed my altar-ego identity, I began leaping to the top of imaginary buildings, high-kicking bad guys, and forcing villians to tell the truth with my magic lasso. I still remember the bionic sound I heard when I leapt to the top of buildings.
Believing a lie
I grew up believing I was supposed to feel bad about myself. I actually believed it was right for me to hate myself. I felt unworthy of a good life. I lived under a constant cloud of deep unworthiness and despair.
Part of me knew I could be happy. But there was a loud, injured part of me saying, “Bad things are happening. You’re a bad person. Watch out, because something else bad is just around the corner.”
I thought I was “broken” and the future seemed hopeless. I would sit on my bed, looking out my second-story window and imagine I could fly away.
What if life can be better?
In my teens I started researching and reading books to figure out what was “wrong” with me and how to fix it. Many books assured me I was broken. They said since I’d experienced childhood abuse, I could never be all the way happy. I would always struggle. I’d always have a cloud hanging over my head.
But my inner Wonder Woman knew better. Deep inside I knew life could be better. I refused to believe my future must be defined by my past.
Some books offered hope. They talked about self-love and self-acceptance. I very slowly began to realize it was ok to love myself and say nice things to myself. This was literally scary for me. I felt like a liar. It was uncomfortable for me to pretend I wasn’t bad.
I couldn’t wrap my brain around the idea of loving myself but I gave myself permission to pretend I liked myself. I decided I could be a little less mean to me. I paid attention to the way I talked to myself and started being a little nicer.
Pain helped me grow
I got married when I was eighteen years old.
After fifteen unhappy years, I finally found the courage to leave. I learned to love myself just enough to give myself permission to walk away from a destructive relationship.
I had never worked and only had a high school education but I knew I would be ok.
I started a retail job where I was surrounded by positive people. My self-love journey evolved because I saw my worth reflected in the eyes of people around me.
At first I was afraid to make eye contact with people because I was afraid they’d see into my heart and think I was a bad person. I thought they’d think I was fooling them by acting like a good person. I had still had a shame mentality.
I spent time with people who were kind to themselves and their example helped me start to realize I am a good person.
About a year after my divorce, I let myself acknowledge the dream I’d put on hold many years earlier. I’d wanted to be a hairstylist since I was a little girl, but I’d buried the dream so deep I hadn’t considered it. (What dream are you about to remember?)
Even more people liked me at cosmetology school. I mean really liked me! Geez, maybe I wasn’t as bad as I thought.
I got a job at the best salon in the city. The owner was an incredible business man. He embodied wisdom and compassion.
I immediately knew he was the real deal. Sometimes I would pass him in the hallway of the large salon (60 employees) and he would look at me - right in the eye - and say, “Hi Lori” and I was shocked he knew my name.
Sometimes he invited me to sit down and talk. He asked me for my opinion about my training and how the salon was run. And he really listened. When I dared to look him in the eye, I could see my own beauty reflected back in his eyes. I may have tricked all those other people, but this guy was smart. He would’ve known if I was faking.
As I write about this I’m overwhelmed with emotion because this man had such a huge impact on my life. You never know whose life you’re changing with a kind word or gesture. Love on everyone you meet.
My inner Wonder Woman continued to grow. So slowly and subtly I didn’t notice. I began to believe it was ok to love myself and see myself as a good person. It was ok to stop judging myself.
It was ok to be imperfect.
You become like the people around you
I was surrounded by amazing people who loved themselves and taught me to love myself. They encouraged me to be confident. I saw their confidence and paid attention to their behavior.
I was mentored by Krissy, a Master Stylist who exudes confidence and poise. I was her shadow for months. I watched how she made her clients feel loved and spoke as an expert. I hung on every word. I spent so much time with her that her mannerisms and confidence became my own.
Did you know when we watch someone, there’s a part of our brain that doesn’t know if we’re watching or actually doing the activity ourselves? These are called mirror neurons. (So be careful who you watch.)
Fake it til you become it.
At first, I was faking confidence. But before long I realized I wasn’t pretending anymore. I assumed a confident identity. My clientele grew even as my prices grew and I was promoted through the ranks to Master Stylist.
I was a great hairstylist, but that was secondary. My clients stayed with me because I listened to them and reflected their beauty back at them. The way others had done for me.
I began to daydream about making a bigger difference. My clients told me their deepest secrets and shared their hearts with me and I realized we all have so much in common. That sense of unworthiness was deeply rooted in almost everyone I encountered and it broke my heart.
I wanted to help people. I wanted them to see what I saw in them.
I want people to understand that their past does not dictate their future. You can change your destiny. I had studied enough neuroscience to know that our brains can change themselves.
Choose your own life
We can rewrite our future and be the person we want to be.
I absolutely knew this was true but I didn’t know how to turn the knowing into doing. How could I actually change my thinking and my habits?
I accidentally stumbled on the answer when I found hypnosis. I saw a couple hypnotists to help me with my perpetual weight issues and yo-yo dieting and realized this was the answer!
Hypnosis uses neuroscience to change your beliefs and abilities. Hypnosis makes it fun and easy to change our thoughts and habits.
It’s the shortcut to changing your brain. It’s the neuroplasticity hack.
My story can be your story
I am now living the life I imagined years ago. My inner Wonder Woman has grown so strong that she’s the default voice in my head.
“I can.” has become my knee jerk response to challenges.
You are not broken. Your past does not dictate your future.
If I could show you a simple shortcut to loving yourself and creating the life of your dreams would you be interested?
I’m going to share all the things I wish I’d known a couple decades ago so you can love yourself and accept your worthiness now.
I promise if you follow these four steps consistently your life will dramatically change in ways you never would have dreamed.
4 Steps to Self-Love
Don't just read these steps. Take a few minutes to do this life changing exercise now.
Step 1: Ask yourself, “Who would I be if I believed I was worthy of good things?”
Don’t try to answer the question. Just ask and let it sit. Let that magnificent brain of yours dream up the answer.
Step 2: Ask yourself, “How would I live if I knew I was worthy of every good thing?”
Close your eyes. Take a few deep breaths and really focus on what’s going on inside you.
Ask yourself what dreams you’ve put on hold then be quiet and notice what comes up.
Don’t censor anything. Let yourself dream big.
When you feel really amazing, notice where you feel that vision in your body.
Memorize the way your body feels. Then write your vision down on a notecard.
Place the notecard on your pillow so you see it every night and remember to think about it.
“Those who have a 'why' to live, can bear with almost any 'how'.” - Viktor Frankl
When you tap into a vision greater than yourself, you begin to see yourself differently. You gain a new identity.
That identity causes you to believe new things about yourself.
Do you doubt your ability to live up to your purpose? That’s because you’ve focused on a false belief that you’re not good enough.
You’ve pushed your dream aside with worry or self-doubt. You’ve become a victim of your environment instead of consciously choosing what you believe.
Step 3: Start acting like the you in your vision.
Take baby steps at first. The best way to do this is to just stand and breath the way "future you" stands and breathes in your vision.
The quickest way to change the way you feel is to change your posture and breathing.
Step 4: Read your note card several times a day.
Put cards in your underwear drawer, next to your coffee-pot, beside your toothbrush, and in your car.
Change your posture and breathing whenever you think of it. This seems overly simple but I promise it will change your life.
Every time you practice feeling, seeing, hearing and experiencing your vision it will become more powerful. You’ll believe it more. This becomes your new truth and unworthiness becomes the lie.
Allow yourself to dream big and find your purpose. Every time you think about your vision it will expand and become more real and clear.
Please don’t walk away from this article without taking action. You were meant to read this. The fact that you’re here means you’re ready to change your life. You’re ready to accept your worthiness and create the life of your dreams.
I'm here for you. If you need further guidance, please reach out anytime. I read and respond to every email.