on not turning down the volume + announcing giveaway party!

Mar 19, 2013 | Life in Progress

(me, a couple of weeks ago on the OR coast)

I am a HUGE fan of Gay Hendricks. As I wrote on this page where I share my favorite supplies and books, I read his book Conscious Living in college and it has fully informed my views on life, partnership, vulnerability, and more. I have read and re-read it. It’s a book that speaks my language and has changed my life. Highly recommended.

Recently, I bought his book, The Big Leap, and again, another life changer. This particular passage about the hidden barriers we have when it comes to shining brightly in our lives stopped me in my tracks:

Hidden Barrier No. 1: Feeling Fundamentally Flawed.

The belief that one is fundamentally flawed in some way is an immense barrier to optimal experience. And it brings with it a related fear: If you did make a commitment to fully using your unique gifts, you might fail. This belief tells you to play it safe and stay small. That way, if you fail, at least you fail small.

Hidden Barrier No. 2: Disloyalty and Abandonment.

This barrier is the feeling that I cannot expand to my full success because it would cause me to end up all alone, be disloyal to my roots and leave behind people from my past.

Hidden Barrier No. 3: Believing That More Success Makes You a Bigger Burden.

This barrier is the feeling that I cannot achieve my highest potential because I’d be an even bigger burden than I am now.

Hidden Barrier No. 4: The Crime of Outshining.

The unconscious mantra of the outshining barrier goes like this: I must not achieve my full success, because if I did I would outshine someone and make him or her look or feel bad. This barrier is very common among gifted and talented children. They get a lot of their parents’ attention, but they also get a strong subliminal message: Don’t shine too much, or you’ll make others feel bad or look bad. One unconscious solution that gifted children devise is to turn down the volume on their genius so others don’t feel threatened by it. The other solution is to continue to shine brightly but turn down the volume on their enjoyment of it.

(me, couple of weeks ago on the OR coast when I was returning to my confidence)

Good stuff, right?

This particular sentence in No 4 hit home for me (big time):
The other solution is to continue to shine brightly but turn down the volume on their enjoyment of it.

Ah yes, this sounds familiar. This is my struggle. As I made my way into the creative life, I learned to shine. I also believe that when we allow ourselves to shine, we give others permission to do the same. What I’m really working on these days, thanks to Mr. Hendricks, is not turning down the volume on my enjoying it. Major aha. It made me think of the idea that until we really enjoy it, then we haven’t fully received the gift. And if we haven’t fully received the gift, then we’re not filling our well to then give and radiate out to our families and into our work in the world. And perhaps one of the reasons we’re not fully enjoying/receiving the gift is because there is a sense of undeserving/shame attached to it. Not deserving = can’t enjoy it. If we think we’re deserving, then full permission to enjoy. So yes, I’m working on this. Something tells me it’s critical in order to take the next big leap. Thank you, Mr. Hendricks. You have been a huge guide for me. So thankful!

“Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.”- Marianne Williamson     
Speaking of joy and really good things….I am hosting a HUGE Hip Hip Hooray Giveaway Party here in this space on Thursday. One day only. Major prizes and party favors. All free. All awesome. And YOU are invited. Put on your party dress, friends. And I’ll see you here on Thursday!
XXO, Kelly Rae

Sending much love,

Show/Hide Comments (27 comments)
  1. SpiritMama

    How synchronistic, I am reading The Big Leap right now and just today read about hidden barriers <3

  2. Keri Weddle

    i am celebrating a new season of life for me that seems to be full of Release from my past behaviors and embracing the active, artistic, momma me. I have found myself sitting in a posture of new TRUTHS I am CLAIMING as my own…MOVEMENT of MAKING. too many times in my life i spend so much time dreaming that i forget to act upon these growing desires to CREATE JOY through ART, so I have decided to ACT upon this idea in the here and now regardless of the outcome. listening to my own words of ENCOURAGEMENT to my students that the PROCESS IS THE BEAUTY WITHIN ITSELF!

  3. Brenda

    I am celebrating me and the job I have done raising my children. I am celebrating family and friends and the adventures that are around the corner.TODAY IS A GREAT DAY TO BE ALIVE…..

  4. Meg

     I am celebrating that I am finally growing up and most of the time I like myself. I am celebrating as I slowly learn that some things you can't control, not every body is going to like you and sometimes you-just-have-to-let-it-go..

  5. Flowers on Footprints

    I am celebrating how far I've come on my journey, the opportunities I have been given, and the joy that letting go of my fears has brought me!

  6. deb did it

    This day and everyday I celebrate my health, creative spirit, abundant life, and fast internet to connect with my most inspirational,
    generous, creative online community!!

  7. deb did it

    I am doing the Crazy-Happy-Dance-Family-Looking-at-You-Like-You-Lost-Your-Mind…..so happy I landed here again today!!!

  8. Ginny Ballou

    Well, this is an amazing event – so many choices, so much great info! Wow, today I'm just celebrating being alive, getting ready to celebrate my favorite season – SPRING!! Happy Day Everyone!

  9. Shannon @ SMC by Design

    Really kind of amazeballs. I'm actually printing this email and looking for some new books! Thanks so much for sharing.

  10. Elma

    Just love your blog! I am enjoying life with my hubby eight kids and three grandkids:) Such a Blessing!!

  11. Anonymous

    Rebirth…of our community that was damaged by Superstorm Sandy. My art students and I will be participating in a program called "Stars of Hope" where we will be creating 500 stars with inspirational messages. Our goal is for the children to heal through art and send a positive message to our small and proud town of Oceanside , NY!

  12. ruth schwab

    It is March; spring is all around me. I love hearing the birds, seeing the beautiful blooms on the trees, the sprigs of green grass pushing up through the layers of last year's grass. But March is also a very hard month. It starts the countdown to April 19, 1995 – the day the Murrah Federal Building was destroyed by a bomb. I always try to celebrate life and that I am still part of it, but it is hard to put aside the memories of that day: hearing that terrible noise and waking up not able to see anything but knowing something terrible had happened. Fortunately, the sight in my left eye came back after a few days. My right eye had to be removed. But that hurt was nothing compared to the loss of so many friends. Including my best friend, Trish. Almost 18 years now. I still miss my friends, but for me, life has gone on. I feel I must celebrate this life because for some unknown reason, God left me here. I strive to give Him glory while celebrating another year. To not, would negate my survival. So what am I celebrating? LIFE!!

  13. Julie Rasmussen

    I'm celebrating Life! I'm alive with 3 beautiful children a loving husband and 4 fuzzy cats! Life is wonderful:)

  14. Peggy

    I am celebrating fifty-fouradorable years tomorrow!! I look forward to the future and enjoy the memories of the past…

  15. Jodi Lynn

    thank you!!! I sooo enjoy your blog and all your works. You help fill my cup Kelly! 🙂

  16. Anonymous

    Thank you for sharing this with us, Kelly. This — "One unconscious solution that gifted children devise is to turn down the volume on their genius so others don't feel threatened by it. " — is me. I wish I could say it "was" me, but I find that even as an adult it still is. To fit in with most of my family and even my friends throughout the years I have turned the volume way down. Not because my parents told me to , quite the opposite actually, but it was definitely an unconscious choice I made as a child. To this day, sadly, most people would be surprised to find out that I attended a top university, or that I have the amount of talent and skills that I do. I just don't wear it on my sleeve or even display it through my actions. I've always earned and gone for opportunities that are under my potential. Oddly, I think I used to be proud that I could "dim" down so well, and camouflage with the crowd. Now I'm quite sad that this deeply ingrained, self-inflicted habit, has turned into a difficult hurdle on my adult path to living a successful, authentic life. Thank you again for this safe place to share and the opportunity to do so anonymously. Just writing these words feels like an incredible relief and release. It's an uncomfortable thing to think about, but you've just reminded me it's a really necessary thing to pay attention to. I've not seen this topic, that personally has felt like a lonely and weird "disease to dumb down" discussed before. I am looking into Mr. Hendrix. "Conscious Living" is on it's way. And I'm sure this book will follow.

  17. Holly

    Thank you so much for sharing this, Kelly! I felt like you hit me between the eyes with this post. Wow. I absolutely need to read this book!

  18. Holly

    It's funny to me how the universe sends messages you need to see at the right time. I have heard this several times this week already, and it is such an important growth point for me. Thanks for sharing, you are an inspiration!

  19. Jenny

    wowser. This whole blog post was an eye-opener and left me feeling a weird feeling, like… how do you know me so well? Thank you so much for sharing it. I needed to read it today.

  20. Sue Allemand

    WOW – this highlighted a few ah-ha's for me. I've been in the art "business" for 20 years…but am now reinventing that business into a new incarnation. I've been STUCK in a lot of ways – and continuously researching, revising, changing product, design, etc… instead of just getting ON with it! And I just realized reading your post…that I think I'm afraid of the "new" business not being able to outshine or shine as brightly as the old version…so I'm procrastinating – under the illusion of wanting to make sure everything's PERFECT for that first impression unveiling. Hmmmm…. I had great successes in art design/publishing and licensing – and now choosing to make and promote art/gift products that inspire and teach joy and happy living…it seems so daunting in my mind…that I'm not fully engaging. Does that make sense?? I want to shine – I want to get this right… I guess I need to buy this book! 🙂

  21. Hilary (Be Nourished)

    I love this succinct and beautiful writing about something that can be so hard to articulate. In my work with women (mostly about their bodies, which is really a metaphor for all things possible in their lives) these themes are always in the room. And, in my life, I find myself looking for these and leaning into them when they show. It's amazing tho think about how joy and presence are really wonderful for coping, when I ( and I think many) have been relying on defense and protection. To shining.

  22. Shawn Petite

    Thanks Kelly… good stuff and a great reminder… I know I definately struggle with all of the above. I encourage women on by blog but as creatives we need to encourage, accept, and shine brightly ourselves.. so that we have something to give back… as always thanks for the encouragement! I'm getting the book! See you on Thursday! Shawn Petite

  23. Anonymous

    Thank you so much for going "there". I have long thought I have a self imposed limit on happiness for fear that I would not be loved by my family if I had too much in my life, a husband, kids, a home, a job…normal stuff for most, but fear instilling that one more thing like happiness would cause me to be shunned by my family of origin. Loosing the weight I put on to keep me from having too much may have to finally go. Just ordered the audiobook. Thanks.

  24. Heather Koshiol

    These are all barriers I've been working on myself, and it's good to read another reminder and hear about a helpful book for me to add to my collection. Thank you for sharing!

  25. CanvasPics {Interior HeART still life}

    You are right, good stuff. Another book to check into- thanks, I just ordered a couple of the other books you mentioned on your blog. See ya Thursday (exciting!).

  26. Lisa F.

    Looking forward to checking out that book. I was constantly pressured as a child to achieve Big Things, you are So Smart was always said, but it felt like it was my responsibility to make the family look good. Then my little sister's artwork was chosen to be the Christmas Seal picture for our state when she was in 2nd or 3rd grade, and a Huge Deal was made over that, and I couldn't compete with that, so I pushed art away. Since my son has been born, I've had the door to art re-opened for me, through doing crafts with him. I've been amassing art supplies for a while, and I finally did my first collage on Saturday for a friend's birthday gift. It wasn't perfect, and I wish I'd spent more time on it, but I *finally* did it.

    Thank you for leading the way! Can't wait to see what comes next, for you & everyone else here, and for me.

  27. Jennifer Wilson

    Oh wow, boy does this resonate. I don't know how many times, both in school and in work, that I was told by peers to tone it down because I was making others look bad. From this I learned to feel ashamed of my own strengths.

    Thank you for the book recommendation. I'll enjoy it while sipping coffee from my KRR mug.


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Hello + welcome!

I’m Kelly Rae Roberts

Before I picked up my first paintbrush at the age of 30, I was a medical social worker. I followed my creative whispers, and today I’m an artist & Possibilitarian. I’m passionate about creating meaningful art and experiences that awaken and inspire our spirits.

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