Spring Back Series #5: Finding Your Truth with Abby Wambach & Glennon Doyle
Are you ready to find your truth? We are currently in the tail-end of our spring back series where we are re-visiting some of our favorite episodes from For The Love past, and Jen’s bringing some all new insight and commentary to the conversation, as it is relevant to where we all are right now. This week we bring you the blockbuster combo of Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach! We love them here, but just in case you’re new, Glennon is a speaker, encourager, and a New York Times bestselling author with her most recent book, Untamed, passing 2 million copies sold–and she’s just started a brand new podcast called We Can Do Hard Things. Abby is an international soccer icon, bestselling author of the book WOLFPACK, and an activist for women and equal rights. This powerhouse couple and their unwavering belief in women inspires millions, and their work to create a more beautiful world for everyone is aspirational. So, this week, we are springing back to their first time here, and stick around all the way to the end as Jen has some new takeaways about lessons learned and how we can take those and dive straight into the life we have always been meant to live.
Hey everyone. Welcome back to the For the Love Podcast. It’s your happy host, Jen Hatmaker here. I am thrilled that you’ve joined us today and you’re going to be too. We are currently in the midst of our Spring Back Series, where we are bringing you some of our absolute favorite interviews from For the Love past, with guests we adore and you adore, with a bunch of added commentary from me. I’m front-loading my own updated commentary so we wanted to take some time to look back at all that we have heard and learned and focus on the truths that stay steady throughout our lives and inform us well today. So our featured guests today are all about living out this truth. But before we dive into who we’re hearing from this week, I want you to think about this.
Do you think your life would just look different if you lived it to please and honor yourself? Now, hold on, ’cause this is not some selfish, live as you please and who cares about anyone else. That’s not at all what I’m saying. I would never say that, but for the women, for sure, we have been taught from the day we were born, that we are supposed to live to please others, to meet the expectations of others, to manage all the needs and wants of others. There’s this host of things that we were told growing up as the way we were “supposed to be” as lovely, good women. Lovely, good girls who grow up into lovely, good women. In some way, we’re supposed to be well-mannered, maybe even demure. We’re supposed to be amicable and easygoing, keeping everybody comfortable all the time, letting everything roll off our shoulders.
We’re supposed to be patient and kind regardless and always. We’re supposed to put everyone else first, at all times. We’re supposed to be flexible, available, understanding. And then, of course, don’t forget, look good, smile, be presentable. It’s funny ’cause I can imagine how that list sounds coming through your AirPods, which is that individually these qualities can be admirable, kind of a tutorial on how to live in the world, maybe with some sort of a Miss Manners vibe.
But when it leaves no room for who we actually are, for our needs, and our wants, and our desires, our boundaries, our instincts, and all those expectations just overshadow our own voice, really our own agency over our life, that is when we began to lean into this danger zone of living inauthentically. So how do we draw the line as to what qualities are good ones to adopt or when even to put them in rotation? There is a moment to be easygoing, there’s a moment where that’s appropriate. There is a moment to be well-mannered, I’m not saying that those things are carte blanche terrible, but when do some of our other qualities get to be in the driver’s seat?
These are great questions that we can ask, that sort of fly in the face of what’s expected. Who are you meant to be, is a great one to start with. Let’s start there and really think about this, and while you do, try to unwind what is wrapped up in what others think who you’re meant to be. So this could be your family of origin. It could be your church. It could be your partner, whoever. Who they say you should be, and really think about who you are in your core. I’m not talking about what you do. I’m talking about who you are and how you flourish on this earth. What brings you joy? What you love. What are you drawn toward? Maybe it is parenting and family. Maybe that is your heart’s greatest desire, and that is exactly how and where you flourish. Maybe you are meant to be a leader, that your strengths lie in guiding and instructing and in steering the ship.Maybe you are a creative and you really come alive making beautiful things, even though other people just want you to be practical.
So don’t get me wrong, I mean, sometimes we do what we need to do. It’s not like every second of every day is just bent around our wishes and preferences. That’s silly and I’m not saying that, so let’s not chase a red herring here. Also every one of us struggles with the voice in our head that tells us that some path isn’t for us, like this is our own mean voice. Or we’re not good enough to get there, or we don’t deserve it, or that’s for other people, or that’s out of reach, but if we go a little deeper, sometimes we’ll find that voice in our heads that holds us back, is really a compilation of other voices. It’s this amalgamation of voices from our childhood, from our experiences, sometimes from our traumas, from our subcultures, from our group norms, whatever group you are in.
So if we can find the courage to push past all those voices, to find our own little, still, small, inner voice that has never wavered, it’s always been there and it’s always been the same, we can start to uncover our truth.
So guys, both of our guests this week have done this work, to push past any of those limiting voices to embrace, like, who am I? Who am I? Who am I on this earth? They are two of our favorite people on the planet, in the For the Love world, in the Jen Hatmaker world, an amazing force together, as a married couple. So of course I’m talking about author and speaker and activist, they’re both all those things, Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach. You know them and you love them. Same.
So of course, Glennon is the writer of the internationally acclaimed, New York Times Bestseller, Untamed, which just hit 2 million copies sold, the rarest of air. Oh, hey, no big deal but it’s also being turned into a TV show so tra-la-la. Not only that, she was called the ‘patron saint of female empowerment’ by People Magazine. Put that on your bio.
Then there’s Abby, my beloved Abby. I’m so obsessed and she knows it, and Glennon knows it too. Oh, I love her. I mean, obviously, she’s a soccer icon. She’s an international soccer icon. She’s also a New York Times Bestselling author. She’s also an activist for equality and inclusion. Her book WOLFPACK was inspired by her viral commencement speech at Barnard in 2018, where she called all women to unleash their individual power, to unite and emerge victorious. It was incredible. Oh, and this is boring, but she’s also a two-time Olympic champion and FIFA world cup champion, so there’s that.
So since their first time on the show, Abby and Glennon have continued to take the world by storm, while really and truly encouraging women to stand up for what they deserve, for the life they’re meant to live, unleashing all this potential that lies in the heart of every human person. During 2021’s celebration of Women’s History Month, these two appeared on CBS This Morning, where they called out the inequality that women faced during the pandemic. They’re just not messing around. They don’t back down. They’re not here for it. It’s incredible, because of course, not only did more women leave the workplace than ever before, but they did so because it was expected that they care for the family during the pandemic. They were the ones to make the adjustments. They were the ones to turn their own personal dials so, of course, this stemmed from workplace misogyny and unequal pay rates and unrealistic standards set by society. While standing up and asking all corporations to invite women to the table during this important discussion, Abby and Glennon are also raising their own family, teaching their kids how to be strong in their own convictions and beliefs, wherever those bring them.
These are my friends, and good friends, at that. Really good friends and they have meant the world to me and they have loved me well, and we have partnered together in a million ways and I believe in them. I do. I believe in them. I love this freedom they are unleashing into the world for all people. Anybody who has certainly been marginalized or oppressed or kept out or kept down, this is where they go. Their first episodes were, of course, loved and adored by you, our listeners, and trust us, we get it. Glennon took the time to explain to us that we are not the unachievable expectations placed upon our shoulders. We are so much more and if we truly take the time to believe in what we are capable of and uncover not just who we want to be, but who we are, we can and will reach that person.
From Abby, of course, we saw her find her way to this natural leadership ability and by leaning into that, she was able to be not just a leader in the soccer world, but now imparting that secret sauce toward finding where you can lead and how businesses can lead. I mean, it’s just expanded beyond all measure. These women have taught me a lot, both of them in their own right, and then together as a couple. They lent me some courage to step into my own life, to step into my own needs and boundaries, to say, “I do deserve this and I don’t deserve that.” It’s interesting because I have watched the people in my life flourish more because of it. Women who show up for their own lives, it isn’t at the expense of everyone else. Ultimately, it’s to their benefit and that is exactly how I’ve seen this play out in my life, so here we go. A few wonderful moments from my chat with Glennon Doyle first, and then words from her amazing wife and my friend, Abby Wambach.