So in the middle of 2016, I made a decision that I would no longer speak on other people’s stages unless it was a friend. And that’s how RISE was born…I knew that it meant that I wasn’t going to be able to meet as many of you guys, but I made this decision because that meant that I was going to be able to stay at home more with my family and that is my number one priority. And the only exception I would make is if Oprah called.
I’ve been writing for years and years in my start today journal that I wanted to speak on Oprah Winfrey’s stage. “I will speak on Oprah Winfrey’s stage.” Fast forward to fall 2019, when their team called and asked me if I wanted to come be a speaker! I mean. OH. MY. GOD. YES & YES.
What a crazy experience y’all. Meeting Oprah. Meeting my hero. It was awesome, but I definitely learned a few things from this once in a lifetime opportunity.
1// Know your standards.
One of the things I have learned in the last two years, even the biggest opportunity needs to be run through the parameters of what makes sense for YOU. Meaning, in every scenario of your life and business, what is the standard for the work you want to do? What are YOUR standards? If you don’t set your own, people will keep knocking it lower and lower.
2 // Difference between an alpha male and an alpha female.
I’ve spoken on stage for both men and women, and one of my experiences was absolutely devastating after speaking for someone who I admired. He didn’t come out and acknowledge me at all or thank me, and I had the exact opposite experience with Oprah. She is one of the classiest women I know, and she had zero reason to come and hang out with me or with my friends backstage. She hugged us. Made us feel seen. And we felt so acknowledged. And all I know is the day that I can’t come out and thank people who have come to speak on my stage, is the day that I cannot do this anymore. Because I DO NOT want to be that person.
3 // I would rather fail as myself, rather than succeed pretending to be someone I’m not.
If you’ve ever been to my RISE conference you know the tampon story, and if you haven’t, get your hearts ready because it’s coming up in my next book. But, I basically got up on Oprah’s stage and knew I was going to tell this story because this is me. This is who I am. And it didn’t matter if Oprah wasn’t into it because she’s not who I’m doing my work for. I can’t control how my message is being received, but I will continue to put it out there because it needs to be there. The real parts, the ugly parts, the truth, and in doing that, other women can find the permission to do the same.
4// No matter what level you’re at, the only way you’re going to grow is if you get out over your skis.
I’m not going to lie. The day of Oprah, I was like “I wish I hadn’t said yes, and I wish was at home.” But then I had to basically “Rachel Hollis” myself and understand that this challenge is exactly what I need. The idea here is that you’re leaning so far forward that you’re losing balance. You’ve got to put yourself in situations where you’re worried you’re going to fail, and you have to get to the other side to succeed. You have to challenge yourself. You have to be afraid. You have to get uncomfortable. So the question is are you willing to stay here and stay stuck? Or are you gonna step up??