Growing up, and even through university, I was a people pleaser, a peace keeper, and a best friend. I put other people first, worried about the emotions of others, and prided myself on being low-maintenance and easy going. If you read my story you know how well that worked out for me.
In contrast, my two best friends in undergrad seemed demanding and selfish as they seemed to always put themselves first. I always got the smallest piece of chocolate, the crappies bed in the hotel room, the ugliest beach towel, and ended up being the one waiting for them to get ready. It wasn’t just that they were always taking the best. I had been raised to serve others, give to others, and selfishness was a very negative quality. So I was also always giving them the best. I wasn’t trying to put them above me, I thought that they would reciprocate when it was theirs to give. Only they didn’t.
This was a big lesson, because there was one other thing these two friends had in common that I wanted: Their parents thought they deserved the best, they thought they deserved the best, so everybody around them thought they deserved the best. And no, my friends were not snobs or overly selfish. Self love was just not one of their life lessons.
This might sound cheesy, but I didn’t decide that I needed to change until I saw the movie ’The Holiday’ for the first time. There’s this scene where Eli Wallach tells Kate Winslet something that really hit me:
Iris, in the movies we have leading ladies and we have the best friend. You, I can tell, are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend.
I decided right then to stop playing the best friend and be the leading lady in my own life. Turns out this has been a process, because I wasn’t used to doing it and I didn’t have a vision of all the ways I would need to incorporate this in my life. The examples above are just scratching the surface. Being the leading lady means taking responsibility for your happiness. It means being in the driver’s seat. It means trusting your decisions. It means investing in yourself. It means giving yourself exactly what you need. It means saying ‘yes’ to yourself and ’no’ to what doesn’t serve you.
What role have you been playing?
- Do you feel like you deserve the best?
- Do you make sure your needs are being served first?
- How often do you share your honest opinion?
- If somebody holds the door open, do you walk through it, or insist they go first?
- If I told you that you’re beautiful, could you hold eye contact and say “Thanks!” or would you brush off my compliment?
Here are some questions to help you become the leading lady in your own life, or step further into that role if you are already there:
- What is it you need, that you haven’t been willing to give yourself?
- What have you been tolerating?
- How long have you been tolerating this?
- How can you treat yourself exquisitely?
- How can you open yourself up to receiving more?
For me, becoming the leading lady is what helped me learn to love myself, heal my relationship with food, and claim my happiness!
If you could use support with putting yourself first and claiming your health, happiness, and beauty, then I’d love to talk with you! Come work with me
Have you been playing the best friend? What are some ways you can step into the role of leading lady?