In a world where Samantha Leith felt unheard and her needs went unmet, she embarked on a journey that would forever transform her life. Little did she know, she would stumble upon an unexpected twist that would ignite her self-confidence and self-awareness in ways she never thought possible. Through her podcast, she now shares this powerful twist, a revelation that holds the key to unlocking a world of personal growth and empowerment. But what is this twist? And how does it hold the secret to becoming our most extraordinary selves? Stay tuned as Samantha Leith unveils the surprising truth that will forever change the way we advocate for ourselves.
Dare to set boundaries and love yourself enough to prioritize your own well-being. Self-advocacy is an act of courage and self-respect. – Samantha Leith
Mentioned in this Episode
In this episode, you will be able to:
- Gain the confidence to speak up for yourself and advocate for your needs effectively.
- Learn how to communicate assertively and constructively in your self-advocacy efforts.
- Discover role-playing exercises that can help you practice and improve your self-advocacy skills.
- Develop negotiation skills that will empower you to navigate challenging situations and advocate for what you deserve.
- Cultivate self-confidence and self-awareness, enabling you to assert yourself confidently and effectively in your self-advocacy journey.
Enhance self-confidence and self-awareness
The essence of powerful self-advocacy is deeply rooted in a strong sense of self-confidence and self-awareness. Unearthing the value of one’s own needs, rights, and desires is fundamental in crafting a personal advocacy strategy. This innate understanding of one’s own worth creates a stable platform that energizes self-confidence, empowering individuals to stand up for their own rights, embody their authenticity, and navigate life confidently.
The resources mentioned in this episode are:
- Visit my website to learn more about self-advocacy and the power it can have in your life.
- Download my free guide on setting boundaries and learn how to communicate your needs effectively.
- Join my Facebook group for support and advice on self-advocacy and personal growth.
- Book a coaching session with me to dive deeper into self-advocacy and develop strategies for standing up for yourself.
- Check out my recommended resources page for books, podcasts, and other tools to help you on yourself advocacy journey.
- Follow me on social media for daily inspiration and tips on self-advocacy.
- Sign up for my newsletter to receive regular updates and exclusive content on self-advocacy and personal development.
- Share this episode with a friend or loved one who could benefit from learning about the power of self-advocacy.
- Leave a review on Apple Podcasts or your preferred podcast platform to help others discover the Samantha Leith Podcast and learn about self-advocacy.
Timestamped summary of this episode:
00:00:03 – Welcome to the Samantha Leith podcast. With me, Samantha Leith. I have a passion for exploring anything and everything that can help us to be extraordinary. Each week, I’m going to dive into a topic and explore it extensively. Because if there’s something that makes for a better life, I want to learn about it and more importantly, share it.
00:00:23 – And hey, you may just get the OD song thrown in. There’ll be deep conversations, fun and frivolity helpful tools for you to add to your life straight away. Random musings about anything from coffee to sex and information that may just blow your mind. This is a podcast for dreamers, believers, action takers and achievers. It’s personal development, but not as you know it.
00:00:52 – Hello and welcome to this week’s episode of the Samantha Leith Podcast, episode 39, where we are talking about the power of self-advocacy. Now, this is a continuation of the confidence stack that I talked about a couple of weeks ago, where there’s all these little bits that if you’ve strong in them, you can do anything. You can have a wibble wobble, you can have a bad day, you can have a bad weekend, and your confidence will not shatter. How good is that? That’s what we all want, right?
00:01:27 – We don’t want our confidence to shatter. We want to be so strong in all of those pieces of our confidence stack that we can just keep going and going and going and doing things. So self-advocacy is about giving volume to your voice, okay? Your voice. So let’s dive in.
00:01:44 – So first of all, what is self-advocacy? We hear the term advocacy around a lot, but I wonder if many of you I certainly hadn’t have really understood what it means to advocate for yourself and about knowing yourself, your needs, your rights, your desires, being able to communicate them effectively, being able to negotiate for yourself, being able to speak up on your own behalf and knowing that all of those things are a great thing to do. Because as L’Oreal says, you’re worth it.
00:02:23 – Honestly, one of the best taglines ever, right? Like it’s up there with just it because you’re worth it. So if we want to look at the actual definition of self-advocacy and yes, I have got this written down well, not written down because my handwriting is nothing to give anybody confidence about. I do have it typed up. So, self-advocacy refers to an individual’s ability to understand and communicate their own needs, rights and desires.
00:02:51 – It involves recognizing one’s own value and standing up for oneself, making informed decisions and seeking out resources or solutions. So it’s about ensuring that one’s voice is heard and that one’s needs and desires are respected. Well, I love that word. And addressed whether in personal, professional or public domains. How good does that sound?
00:03:13 – So why the heck do we not talk about it more often? Why do we not realize how important it is for ourselves, to advocate for ourselves. And it’s not about standing on top of a mountain and going, I need this. I actually think the teeny tiny things are more important when we’re talking about self-advocacy, but that’s me personally, so why is it important? I’m just going to go over a couple of things, might dig into a few things because they’re the things I want to dig into.
00:03:46 – And hopefully these little nuggets will just set off like a light in your mind and next time you’re confronted by something or something happens and you’re like, no, hang on, that’s not what I want. That’s not how I feel. That’s not right, or any of those kind of things, you go, hmm, that Sam chick mentioned that on that podcast. I think I’m going to blah. That’s what I’d love for you to be able to do this work is not stuff that you need to necessarily think about every day or practice every day or do every day.
00:04:24 – It’s not like learning the piano or how to speak French. But the more, as I’ve mentioned before, the more these little pieces just drop into our minds, the more they rewire how we think and how we do things. And ultimately it’s that rewiring of us that makes us be our best selves, our most extraordinary selves. Okay? So self-advocacy, it helps us with our empowerment, self-awareness, if you understand what it is you really want, desire, need, et cetera.
00:05:01 – How good is that for your self-awareness? I’m guessing some of you have never actually even asked yourself those questions. Like, what is it I truly need in this situation? Like, really? When was the last time you asked yourself that question?
00:05:16 – I don’t think I’d asked myself that question till I was in my thirty s. I just kind of pussyfooted around and did what other people told me to do or I thought I should do or was what was cool or like, why don’t they teach this stuff in school instead of some of the stuff I know my daughter’s doing at the moment for HSC? Anyway, I digress on that one.
00:05:38 – Being really a good advocate for yourself gives you an enhanced quality of life. It improves things. It obviously in some aspects of your life will help protect your rights because there are fundamental human rights that we all have. If we don’t advocate for ourselves, we may miss out on some of those. As I mentioned, it’s about building your confidence.
00:05:59 – It’s such an important part of that established confidence stack that I talk about over and over again helps relationships because we all want better relationships. Like, imagine how different some of the relationships in your life would have been had you actually spoken up for yourself more. I tend to know sorry, I know that many people, myself included, if we don’t feel like we have the ability to stand up for ourselves and say, what we truly think or feel in a situation. We can sometimes do what, bake or cut off our nose despite our face and do that complete flip and walk out of the situation. Or we can self-sabotage and ruin the relationship or the job or something like that just because we couldn’t say what we actually wanted to say.
00:06:52 – And we think the other person should have known better anyway. They should have known what we wanted or needed, not up to us to tell them wrong. Wrong. So improved relationships is a big one, I think, and funny.
00:07:10 – There’s so many things that if we do contribute to the greater world, like, we all know that if you tell someone that that’s a great dress, if you tell someone that it’s like a great dress that they’re wearing that day, you boost their confidence, you boost your own confidence. You feel good. So imagine if the more you advocate for yourself, chances are you’re going to go out in the world and advocate for other people, other people that don’t have the voice that you do, other groups that don’t have the voice that you do. There’s power in that, my friends. Total power in that.
00:07:49 – So I think self-advocacy is kind of one of the cornerstones, really, of personal growth and empowerment. It can help us navigate everything we do with this clearer sense of who we are. And one of the things that leads to which is a really important piece for me, is respect and the consideration that you deserve in whatever it is that you’re advocating for. So when you’re doing your journaling, because I know you all love, a really good thing to do is not every day, obviously, because if you do everything I suggest in journaling every day, you never going to get anything else done. So you don’t want to be doing that.
00:08:36 – But just occasionally think to yourself, what are my needs? What are my desires? How do I feel about what happened today or yesterday? What would I have changed if I did feel that I had that voice? What would I have said?
00:08:52 – Okay, what would I have said? What would I have done? What would I have wanted to change? What would I have wanted to advocate for? For myself, honestly?
00:09:05 – I want to know if you’ve actually really acutely aware of doing this for yourself. I’d love to hear about when you started doing it, why you started doing it, and how that has helped your life. Okay? Love to love to know. So tag me on the socials or send me a message.
00:09:22 – So one of the challenges about speaking up is back in the good old days, and by good old days, I mean when we were younger, how many of you got told they were a good girl? You have to say yes. Just be quiet. They don’t mean it. They’re only joking.
00:09:46 – Oh, it’s just playing. Look, I was just having a tease and you stood there and you took it and thought, oh, okay, well they said they were teasing so really can’t have mean anything. So I can’t say anything about it. I’ll just shut up. The stuff that that did to us about not being able to stand up for ourselves is huge as far as I’m concerned.
00:10:13 – If someone has to say they were just joking or I’m just teasing, wasn’t that funny? Like really it was very rarely that that kind of stuff doesn’t actually impact somebody. So on the flip side of what I’m saying, if you do do that, be careful with it. My friends, one of the things I started saying to myself and I’ve talked a little bit before about tapping and affirmations I use and the fact that in my journal I write down how I choose to feel that day. And I’ll give you an example.
00:10:45 – A couple of weeks ago, it was one of those days where I just felt like not attacked but just this stuff was happening and I didn’t say what I wanted to say. I didn’t act the way I wanted to act because I kind of shut down. That’s my bad, totally my that I am responsible for how I acted. So the next day in my journal I said I deserve to be heard. And I wrote down in my how I choose today I wrote down my feelings are valid, my thoughts are valid and I just wrote them for the day.
00:11:22 – And I did notice that during the day, like I do with every day when I do choose my thoughts for the day, I did notice that I kind of had that lens on what I was thinking as I went through the day. So it really helped. Okay, so one of the things you got to know, as I said about is knowing yourself. Like you’ve got to know your values, your worth, how you want to be treated, how you want to feel, what you will accept in circumstances, what you won’t accept in circumstances. And one of the things that really helps with this is ability to set boundaries.
00:11:56 – Yeah, that big B word that we’re all so scared of boundaries are they’re so important to let others know what we will and we won’t accept. Now remember, it’s not about making other people do certain things because we can’t control other people, but we can control our response to things. And the legend herself, Brene Brown, got to quote her, daring to set boundaries is about having the courage to love ourselves even when we risk disappointing others. And self-advocacy big part of loving ourself. And you’ve got to know your limits.
00:12:37 – You’ve got to know what you want in order to accept boundaries. And pretty sure I’ve done a podcast on boundaries before. If not, there’s definitely a download on the website and I definitely will be doing a podcast about it. I should check that. But just a couple of simple tips that I’ll give you here and now is so know how you feel, know your limits, you got to communicate them clearly.
00:13:02 – But remember, it’s not about being confrontational, it’s about being clear. And it’s not about trying to make someone do something they don’t want to do either, because we don’t want to do that. And we’ve got to remember that no is a complete sentence. Yes, big one. Say that quite often to myself and to other people.
00:13:21 – And if you’re having trouble setting boundaries, talk to a friend or reach out to a coach or a mentor. There’s a gazillion, Facebook groups, you’re probably a part. Know if there’s caring people in them in there. Ask them a question about boundary setting. Talk about why you’re finding something difficult and advocate.
00:13:40 – There you go. On your own behalf about why it’s important to you and maybe someone can give you some tips. But it’s that communication that’s really important part of boundaries. And I’ll give you a little example.
00:13:53 – I’m a bit of a yes girl, so someone will say, can I borrow this? Can I borrow that? I’m like, yeah, sure, of course you can. Yeah, because you can. And that takes ages for me to get it back.
00:14:02 – Why did I say yes? And recently, a very, very good friend of mine asked to borrow a couple of outfits and she had a photo shoot coming up and she was going to a party and I was like, yeah, sure, take whatever you want. And I saw a photo of her in one of the outfits of the party and I was like, oh my gosh. She looked amazing, looked fantastic. But something little niggly started inside of me and I was like, because we’re in similar spaces online, so there’s a lot of my audience that would see her photos and vice versa.
00:14:32 – And I totally didn’t mind that she was wearing it for the party. She rocked it. But I was like, oh, no, I don’t want her having photos taken in these outfits in a professional sense, like for her website and things like that, because I have photos in those outfits. So I was like, oh. And it took me like two days to get up the courage.
00:14:52 – And Rebecca, if you’re listening, thank you for being so nice about it. And I rang her and I just I really would prefer you didn’t wear those outfits for your photography. I’ve thought about it and these are my reasons now. I didn’t have to do that. I could have just said, look, I’ve changed them, I know you can’t wear them, but I have the kind of relationship with her that I could say it and she was like and when I explained, oh my gosh, she totally, totally understood.
00:15:21 – And then she ended up wearing even better outfits for her photo shoot. But it taught me a lesson until that moment; I hadn’t realized that that was actually important to me. And if you’ve seen no memes and things are like, it’s got my look, that’s kind of how I felt. And I was like, not that no one else in the world can have the same outfit as me, but I wanted to protect that little world that I’m in online, and it’s like turning up to a party, really, the online party, and there’s a couple of us in the same frock. I don’t want to do that.
00:15:56 – So I communicated her with really effectively about it. And that’s one of the big steps to self-advocacy. You’ve got to be able to communicate. And one of the ways to do that is not about make it about the other person. So I not you, you I.
00:16:14 – So don’t blame someone for something. Don’t generalize. Talk about how it makes you feel, what you want. So in that case, I was like, I’ve decided I’m not comfortable. That kind of thing.
00:16:32 – It wasn’t about anything she was doing, was all about me. And if you find it really hard to do that kind of thing, one of the ways to do it, and you’re going to feel like a twit. You really are. And I’m so sorry. Not sorry.
00:16:47 – Practice in the mirror or practice with a friend or a loved one who it’s not actually the person that you’re advocating with we want to communicate with. Rather, practice with them or practice in the mirror, and you’ll get the hang of it, and they’ll be like, oh, that feels comfortable. That doesn’t feel comfortable. I want to say these words, especially if it’s something big and this kind of thing is new to you. Okay, marathon runners, practice running.
00:17:14 – Why I mentioned that, I’ve got no idea. Violinists practice the violin. If you are starting to advocate for yourself, practice, practice, practice, practice. And a really good way to get better at what you want to say is by listening to the other people. And when you’re in a conversation with someone, something might have just niggled at you, but I want you to have really listened to be able to walk away from that conversation, kind of summarizing what happened and how it made you feel, and in a perfect world, what you would have said, what you would have done.
00:17:53 – So it’s like a little practice in your head, like running a little studio script in your head about what you would have done next time, what happened, how it made you feel, what in a perfect world, what you would have done. So those three questions that you kind of want to ask yourself in, that getting there. But one more little section I want to talk about, and this is a tough one for me, and I’m definitely not a lawyer, and I’m definitely not politician, and that is so I’m a little out of practice. The power of negotiation. Yeah, go back to that good girl stuff that we learnt when we’re really young, we go, okay, yeah, that sounds fine.
00:18:39 – Last time I asked for a pay rise when I was an employee, I was like, okay, yeah, that’s okay. Knowing that that amount of money wasn’t going to help me, it wasn’t going to touch the sides, but I had no idea what to say in that situation. Trust me, I’m a lot better at it now. And when you are negotiating something, remember, it’s a two way street. You want everyone to win.
00:19:04 – Don’t be an ahole and go into a negotiation demanding the world and not getting anything for it. I was listening to an interview the other day and they were talking about, and they were very generalizing about how a certain generation, if they get asked to do like one teeny tiny, extra little thing at work, for example, they’ll ask for a pay rise in and there not, well, can you actually do it? Are you any good at it? Have you proven yourself? That kind of thing?
00:19:33 – Like, no, don’t just go on guns blazing. Negotiation is a fine art. And again, on this one, role play. And if you want to get dressed up and play role play a little dirty, go for it, have some fun. But I mean, just like, again with a coach or a mentor or a trust, a friend, role play what the situation is.
00:19:53 – Role play what you want to negotiate, practice at it, get better, find a win win, and if you can, a win win in this situation for everyone involved in the negotiation and come to it with that power that you’re advocating for yourself and you want what’s best for the organization, the person, the group, whatever it is you’re doing. So instead of doing the no, it’s my way or the highway kind of stuff or about really disagreeing, find some common ground, find a goal that you can build on in the situation rather than the snappy kind of stuff. No, I’ve decided that I want this and that’s all that there is to it. And yeah, if that’s what you want to do, go for it. However, I just want to offer to you that maybe finding a win win is a better solution in the long run for your sustained ability to advocate for yourself.
00:21:00 – That sustained self-confidence, confidence that we want you to have, that muscle that we keep talking about wanting to build, going in guns blazing often knocks you off your pedestal. So we don’t want to be doing that. You want to come from a really grounded, strong place. Advocating for yourself and having this muscle of self-advocacy has to come from strength. It can’t come from manipulation, it can’t come from, well, that didn’t work.
00:21:34 – So I’m just going to do the absolute opposite. And you might not even really know what it is you want when you’re doing either of those kind of things because you’re not coming from that grounded, centered. You what it is you truly want, you desire, how you feel. All that stuff that I talked about a little bit earlier on the episode, have you got it? Do you understand everything there is to know about self-advocacy?
00:21:59 – I’ve got to tell you, my daughter is doing rachst at the moment, and she’ll go and have a study, study for a couple of hours. And she’ll come out and I’m like, see? Do you know everything now you got it. Do you know everything there is to know about insert topic here. So I say that to you.
00:22:13 – Do you know everything there is to know about self-advocacy now? I’m guessing not, because I don’t know that’s this beautiful thing called life that we’re on. We get to learn and grow and discover and uncover so many things about ourselves and about other people in life. And I just think that is such a beautiful thing. And I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to listen to this podcast today and for following me or downloading anything I have.
00:22:48 – It means the world to me that I get to discover something or learn something or find out something through coaching one of my clients or a book I’ve read or unpacking something within myself and I get to share it. And maybe, just maybe, in that sharing and that advocating for myself on many things, I get to help someone else do it. That’s freaking awesome in my book. So thank you. Thank you.
00:23:18 – Thank you. So I’m going to love you and leave you today, my friends. Until next week, stay extraordinary, do extraordinary things, have an extraordinary time, and hell, go wear something extraordinary.
00:23:37 – Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the Samantha Leith podcast. If you enjoyed this episode and want to dive deeper into the world of personal or development and what’s possible for you, then I’d love to invite you to join the club. It’s my monthly membership designed to guide and support you with the tools and the coaching you need to be extraordinary. Head on over to Samanthaleith.com theclub for more information. I’d love to see you on the inside.