Your Unique Flavor

Today, I was challenged to look at those who are already doing what I want to do. Although I coach people for free all the time, and have been the counselor friend my whole life, I don’t yet offer coaching as one of my business services. I’ve been working through limiting beliefs around that, and today, as I looked at all the amazing coaches I know, I realized something really cool.

Black and white photo of a train at a train station Rolling hills in the background. Text states: Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist Magenta Text box with text in white states: Our experiences, our journeys, our stories, and our individual styles of being and communicating all impact our delivery. Nobody can reach your target market like you.

I am probably directly connected to over 20 life coaches on Facebook. I’m in their groups, we’re friends, I learn from them (and hopefully they learn from me, lol). As I looked at them today, I realized that even though they are all amazing—and share the desire to help others grow in the ways they have—they are all unique.

Many of them teach similar concepts, but their delivery is different. Their stories are not the same. Their experiences are not the same. The way they present their material is not the same. It’s so amazing to witness….

So often we hold ourselves back from pursuing a dream or goal because we think the market is too saturated. But, when you go to the grocery store and walk down the cereal aisle, snack aisle, or the coffee/tea aisle, how many different brands are there? Do you just close your eyes and grab whichever one, because ultimately they’re all the same? Probably not. They are unique. Each has a different flavor.

We are equally unique. We have our own flavor. Just because “everybody’s writing a book nowadays” doesn’t mean you shouldn’t write yours. Just because “everybody wants to have a podcast” doesn’t mean yours won’t reach specific people who will only respond to you. Just because “everybody thinks they’re a motivational speaker” doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get on stage, or do your lives, or hop on Zoom, when something within you is calling you to do it.

We’ve got to turn down the volume on the noise that talks us out of what we know wants to come through us. We need to turn up the volume on that voice that’s telling us we have something to offer.

I chose to turn up the volume and write I’m Proud to Be Natural Me! and create my products because it was part of my calling. And even when another author came out with a book that almost stole my title and literally took the words from my description and used them for her own, I still didn’t stop believing that my audience is my audience and nothing changes that.

My next step is to start believing the same about me as a coach. I’m doing the work to eliminate the limiting beliefs that I hold around stepping into that space. I need to turn up the volume on knowing I can help people. I need to turn down the volume on all the what if’s.

Maybe you can relate. Maybe there’s something you’ve been putting off doing. Whatever that thing is that you think you can’t do because there are too many others doing it (or whatever other reason is talking you out of it), take the time to turn down that noise and go inside and listen to the voice that is telling you that you have something to offer—that it’s yours to do. Maybe there’s someone specific, or even a group of someones, that only you can reach.

Think about it.

Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist #Proud2BNaturalMe❤️💜💙💚

Opportunities to Practice

Our dreams and goals belong to us. It’s important to recognize, on the journey we’ll be offered opportunities to show ourselves that we are committed….

Image of a young girl ballerina practicing at the barre. She is wearing a white spaghetti strap leotard with a white tutu, curly hair in a high bun, one arm raised. Text states Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist Thank you for the opportunity to practice. When life & people cause us discomfort, we can choose to suffer or to grow.  @Proud2BNaturalMe

I decided at the end of last year to be more committed to our wellness. I decided to stop buying certain go-to snacks and sweets so that they weren’t easily accessible when cravings occurred. I went the extra distance to express to the members of my household not to offer those items because they work against my intentions and it’ll be hard to say, “No.”

So I was initially perturbed when this person offered a tasty, high calorie treat in front of my child. The old me—as in, the last week version of me—would have been silently annoyed, possibly expressed a fraction of my displeasure, then conceded, saying something like, “Fine. We’ll start again next week.” Not, today.

I kindly (picture Claire Huxtable) reminded this individual of the request I made less than 10 days ago, for them to not offer sweets as they work against our wellness goals. I resisted the urge to feel guilty for declining their offer, and insisted that they put it back where they found it.

After the interaction, I was pissed. It kept playing over in my mind. I found myself questioning why they would work against me, and why they couldn’t support my intentions for our betterment. Then, I thought about my post yesterday. “When we let go of the disappointment of people not being who we designed them to be in our minds, we can appreciate them for who they are.” I realized that they weren’t attempting to sabotage my wellness plans, they were just being themselves. In their mind, the offer was kind. They found something they thought we’d like and in the past that would bring us joy. I realized that I didn’t have anything to be mad about. Actually, they gave me an opportunity to practice my commitment.

For some reason I can never remember which spiritual leader I heard say this. I feel like they were a well-known Buddhist monk. I just remember (and I’ve told this story before) that when they were asked if they ever get angry, they laughed and said something like, “Of course.” The only difference for them is that they are committed to returning to that place of peace, so they choose to say, “Thank you for the opportunity to practice.”

It’s such a beautiful thing to realize in any given moment, we can regain control of how we respond. We can shift our perspective, on any situation—when we are ready to feel differently. We can stay true to our intentions, look at all forms of contrast, and say, “Thank you for the opportunity to practice.”

Try it. It really works.

Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist#Proud2BNaturalMe❤️💜💙💚

Release the Illusion

Image of woman sketching a design on a sheet of paper. Text states 'Marlene Empowerment Specialist When we let go of the disappointment of people not being who we designed them to be in our minds, we can appreciate them for who they are.'
“When we let go of the disappointment of people not being who we designed them to be in our minds, we can appreciate them for who they are.”
– Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

2021 Year In Review – Video Description

The video is just images, text, and music. I’ve provided a description of each frame with the original music so that you can enjoy it, too.

— Happy New Year! Marlene Dillon Empowerment Specialist

  • Frame 1 – Blue screen with white script text states A Year in Review
  • Frame 2 – Image of a purple flower with raindrops on petals, facing downward, stem bent; Text in purple states “All things work together for good.”
  • Frame 3 – Image of desert background with blue sky. Text states “I forgive myself for trusting you more than me.”
  • Frame 4 – Image of a camping site with tent and wood fire. Text states, “Let’s stop building houses where we should be pitching tents.” Inspired by T. D. Jakes.
  • Frame 5 – Image of series of archways in perspective, each one appearing smaller than the one before it. Text states Our thoughts guide our emotions.
  • Frame 6 – Image of a young woman with curly hair holding a cellphone. Text states: “A thought is a suggestion —to keep or discard is our choice.
  • Frame 7 – Image of heaven, bright sky with clouds and streams of light from center. Text states: We are all connected. Follow intuition. Don’t hold back.
  • Frame 8 – Image of a winding road from driver’s perspective. Trees line the sides of the road. Text states: The past is over. What are you going to do with the present?
  • Frame 9 – Image of an orange, black, and white monarch butterfly on a yellow flower. Text states I love myself unconditionally—all I was, al I am, and ALL I am becoming.
  • Frame 10 – Image of a gray brick wall. White text outlined in light blue states Stand before the people you fear and speak your mind — even if your voice shakes. Maggie Kuhn
  • Frame 11 – Image of a winding road with trees on both sides. Text states We will never reach our individual destinations navigating our lives with someone else’s map.
  • Frame 12 – Image of close up child with folded arms staring into the distance. Parents in background arguing. Text states Children believe it’s their fault. It’s our job to teach them it’s not.
  • Frame 13 – Image of a ocean shore line. Turquoise water, foamy waves against a sandy beach shore. Text in dark bluish green states What if our assignment as parents is to get our children to their destiny…. whole?
  • Frame 14 – Image of close up of four plants growing out of soil, each at different growth stages. Green background. Text in green states, “Problems are opportunities we create when we want to grow.” Louise Hay
  • Frame 15 – Image of two children dressed up in silver astronaut costumes. One wearing a helmet. One wearing goggles. Both sitting in a homemade spaceship of tin foil and soda bottles. Text states, Stop asking children what they want to be when they grow up, unless you intend to speak life into their dreams.
  • Frame 16 – Image of person holding and looking over a resume with a stack of more resumes before them. Text states, You are enough. Maybe they were just underqualified.
  • Frame 17 – Image Close up of a sheet of ruled paper and the tip of a pencil. Text states You matter. Your presence matters. What small thing can you do today to make a positive impact?
  • Frame 18 – Photo of Marlene Dillon smiling, natural curly hair, black blouse. Text states Marlene Dillon Empowerment, I’m Proud to Be Natural Me! Author Illustrator, MDillon Designs & Publishing Owner
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