being invisible . . . does it feel like this?

Today, I want to share with you some things that women in my Dynamic Divorcée community have said to me -- this month alone -- on the subject of feeling invisible.  (But, keep reading past the sadness, because -- let's not stay in this invisible black hole!)

First, some raw and honest responses to the question, "What does being invisible mean to you?" 

"Hollow. I see the person in the mirror.  She looks like a tired version of someone I used to know.  She's definitely not the vibrant person I used to see."

"Being treated like you are worthless, weak, and can be bullied."

"Irrelevant, stuck on auto pilot, bland, grey."

"It seems no one sees me, my pain, my value as a human. I feel like everyone just sees me as a tool to get what they need."

"Feeling as if I am not making a lively and beneficial contribution to friends and family, and the world.  Also, feeling small because everyone else seems to be so dominant and happy."  

"It's going about my daily life like a robot of sorts, nobody seems to notice you.  You're there and even appreciated, but nobody seems to take the time to ask you to do things with them."

These are just a few of many responses that I received when I did a giveaway of private coaching with me in my Invisible to Irresistible program. 

Okay, let's try to shift this dreadful, maybe-the-best-part-of-life-is-over feeling.  Is it possible to see the humor in this?

If you haven't seen the Mindy is Invisible superbowl ad (and even if you have),  take a look:

 

I love this because, while you're working out ways to be less invisible in your life, it's fun to enjoy all the things you can get away with since no one's looking.  (Though I don't recommend eating the gallon of ice cream while walking down the grocery aisle!)

Okay, once you've seen the funny side of this situation, what can you do?

How about starting with this.  Ask yourself, "How can I be a little more outrageous today?"  Wow, there's a pretty good chance that you've never even aspired to being outrageous.  In fact, maybe you're not even sure what that might mean for you.

Good.  Time to think about it!

Is your closet almost entirely comprised of neutrals?  Hmmm.  How much fun is that?  Maybe it's time to remember what your favorite color is and to include it -- love seeing it in your surroundings, and on you!

When was the last time you created a little adventurous fun in your life?  Eat something different, see something different, hang out with someone who isn't part of your usual circle.  Find something to get excited about.  You can't be excited and interested in life and still be grey and invisible.  

Don't feel like taking the above suggestion?  Is your inner response that you're just too tired, too cash poor, too depressed?  That's what I'm here for.  To tell you to stop resisting and to take a baby step in the direction of being the person you've dreamed of being.  

Maybe you stopped having personal dreams (you know, the ones that get you really excited with positive expectation) a long time ago.  It's time to get back in touch with the young, hopeful you -- in little ways that feel safe to explore.

And, out of the foggy, grey invisible form that you now see as you, colors and focus and a beautiful form will start to emerge from the inside out.

What is one small thing you can do today to step out from behind the mask of invisibility, and say "Here I am!"?

I keep linking to this blog post of mine from last year, but if you haven't seen it yet, it's all about using just a simple smile to feel better right now. If you're completely stumped about a first step to take, take this one!

100 Days of Rejection Therapy . . . and Eleanor Roosevelt

Today, I came across an online story about  Jia Jiang, an Austin, Texas entrepreneur who is trying to desensitize himself from rejection by undertaking 100 Days of Rejection Therapy.  Here's a link to the blog in which he details his exploits.

In his own words, he's "aiming to have one rejection per day by making crazy requests."

What does this have to do with single, over-40 women forging cool new lives for themselves?  Everything!   The best chance for a great second half of life is in having the confidence not to jump into a luke-warm, less-than-great relationship in exchange for companionship.  It takes a little courage to explore life on your own for a bit, and decide what it is you really want.  And, to be unafraid to go for it.

I hadn't thought about undergoing "rejection therapy" myself, but many decades ago Eleanor Roosevelt advocated a slightly different form of this in a quote often attributed to her:  "Do one thing every day that scares you."

Among other Eleanor Roosevelt aphorisms:
“Do what you feel in your heart to be right – for you’ll be criticized anyway.” 
"You wouldn't worry so much about what others think of you if you realized how seldom they do." 
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” 
“A woman is like a tea bag; you never know how strong it is until it's in hot water.”  (a personal favorite)

Find out more about Eleanor Roosevelt here.