Give the Gift of Positivity: You Can Do This! | Tanya Sheckley | 5 Min Read

August 7, 2023

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the voice that so many of us have in our heads.  For many this voice is critical; it shares the things we don’t want to believe are true about ourselves.  “You’re not good enough… You don’t have enough experience… You’re not smart enough… Everyone here is better than you,” and so many more.  This is sometimes described as an inner dialogue, self-talk, or your inner voice, and leads us to believe we have imposter syndrome, a condition that we have to overcome.  

I’ve become interested in this since I was part of a women’s leadership mastermind group.  The group was consistently talking about how we had to overcome the thoughts in our heads.  I always thought that these were hypothetical thoughts, verbiage designed to help us overcome fear—I mean who has a voice telling them they are stupid all the time?!?  Then I saw an article that talked about how prevalent imposter syndrome was and how some people didn’t have a voice that said these things (I couldn’t find the exact article to link it here as this conversation was several years ago, however many have been written on the topic).  This was the first time I considered that this wasn’t a leader working to understand how some people might feel inadequate, but instead that some people HAVE a voice that tells them these things.  When I mentioned to my coach that I didn’t have this voice, she freaked out!  She had never had a client who didn’t relate to what she was saying and didn’t have an inner voice that was critical and needed overcoming.

I recently saw a friend perform at Shoreline Amphitheater in California.  He has worked tirelessly pursuing his dreams and frequently talks about how he got his start.  It came from validation.  He had an opportunity to be on stage and share his art, his work, and his words; and after the show was told, (I paraphrase) “Hey, that was pretty great, can you do that again?” He got positive feedback doing something he loved, and so had the motivation to keep doing it.  He has been called the “Cult Icon of Hip Hop Culture” in the early 2000s by the Seattle Weekly and he continues to write about what he cares about, make music, and share it with the world.  He…

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Tanya Sheckley

Tanya Sheckley is Founder and President of UP Academy, an elementary lab school which values innovation, empathy and strength and incorporates a unique neuro-development program for children with physical disabilities. Tanya’s vision and mission show it’s possible to celebrate differences, change what’s broken in the American education system, and that all children can receive a rigorous, well-rounded education. She is an Edpreneur, Author of Rebel Educator: Create Classrooms of Imagination and Impact and host of the Rebel Educator podcast. She speaks frequently on the future of education and entrepreneurship. She is a rebel educator who works with new and existing schools to question the status quo and develop innovative student experiences through inclusion and project-based learning.