From time to time, I like to do something which really makes me feel really uncomfortable and pushes me right of outside my comfort zone - partly because I am a glutton for things which cause me a bit of pain (marathon, anyone?) but mainly because I fear that from comfort comes complacency.
A big thing for me this year was to start recording and uploading short videos to The Mothers Den Facebook page - little tips and tricks that have helped so many of my private coaching clients and which I hope might help someone on our online community who is going through something a bit tricky.
In last week's video, I spoke about the strategies I use to combat self-doubt and the positive response that I got from it was huge.
One of the best things that came out of it was the opportunity to sit down and talk with Kate Watts, the incredible woman behind the new fashion label, Only One Ashley, in the lead up to its launch this weekend.
It's literally impossible to listen to Kate tell her story and not be blown away by the remarkable woman that she is. At 14 years old, she fell pregnant to her terminally ill daughter Ashley, as the result of an assault. Heartbreakingly, in 2009, Ashley lost her battle with her illness and through that, Kate had to somehow find a way to put her life back together. Only One Ashley is Kate's way of keeping Ashley's legacy alive while also pursuing her love for beautiful designs and luxe fabrics.
Here is my conversation with the incredible and inspiring Kate:
How does the topic of self-doubt resonate with your life and current situation leading up to the launch?
When I watched your video, I was having these constant moments of “Oh my gosh, it’s not just me!!”
I think that self-doubt is a issue that affects many women, and – despite my public ‘everything is ok face’ - I’m no exception to that. In the lead up to the launch of my label, I’ve gone through a multitude of emotions ranging from happiness and excitement to anxiety, nervousness and self-doubt.
What happens if no one shows up on the night? What happens if people laugh at my designs? What happens if there’s a disaster in the kitchen and my guests don’t get fed? Every worst case scenario has run through my head a million times, but I am learning to process this negative energy and not let it affect me too much.
When I start to feel a little too stressed out, I take a minute to think of all the wonderful things in my life and channel that positive energy moving forward. Your words really resonated with me, and the three tips you gave will stick with me well into the future.
After the challenges you've faced what keeps you going?
The love and support from my family have been a saving grace. In my life I’ve experienced many trials and tribulations after being abused at the age of 14. From this horrible event I was blessed with my beautiful little girl, who was born with a very serious brain condition. We spent the early years of her life in and out of hospital, and these were really hard times, as I was still trying to finish off my schooling.
I have been so lucky to meet and marry such a beautiful man who supports and encourages my dreams. If it wasn’t for him and my amazing family, I’m not sure where I would be today.
Do you ever doubt yourself? If so, what are your biggest fears and how do you move past them?
All. The. Time! When you put your entire heart and soul into something, it’s hard not to doubt yourself. This has been a long time in the making for me, so I feel like I’ve put everything on the line and just want it to succeed so badly. At the same time however, I am feeling really positive about the upcoming launch – so the negative and positive tend to balance each other at this stage.
My biggest fear is failure and disappointing my loved ones. This has been such a long journey for all of us but I just need to remind myself that it’s not the end of the world if something doesn’t go to plan. I’ve been through a lot in my life - I am strong and a survivor, and I can get through whatever the universe throws at me.
How do you deal with negative self-talk?
At the moment, dealing with negative self-talk is easier said than done. This upcoming launch is the most stressed I’ve felt in my life, which makes it easier for the negative self-talk to run rampant in my head. But as you talk about in your video, 'it all begins and ends in your mind'.
‘What you give power to has power over you, if you allow it.’ Those words from Marie Forleo are so beautiful and so relevant to me right now. I am definitely still learning, but with those words fresh in my mind, I’ll be able to recognise my triggers and stop and take a minute to breathe in, breathe out and settle my mind.
What do you do to look after yourself when you're stressed?
Lavender baths and a nice, nutritious meal help to realign my energy when I’m feeling a little too stressed. Spending that time looking after myself really helps me from burning out.
How do you envision your future?
I see a future full of love and success. My label was created from love and so I will strive each and every day to honour my daughter through my love of fashion. It is my dream to be involved in the racing carnivals with my dresses proudly worn at each event. I would also love to give back to the community and helping those who need help, including animals.
The biggest thing that I took away from my chat with Kate was that we all have our pain and we all have our obstacles. But we are also the only ones who can change our own outlook for the better, as long as we have the courage to do so.
I hope you enjoyed reading about Kate's story as much as I enjoyed speaking with her. I would love to know whether you struggle with self-doubt and whether you have any tips and tricks to help you navigate those feelings. As always, you can send me an email or leave a comment below.
Be Brave, Live Fierce
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