• Shawna Baca

The Calming Truth About Maturity



I have been pondering for the last couple of weeks about this subject after a dream come true meeting that was being set up. Ten-fifteen-twenty years ago, if I was granted this type of meeting, I would have spun out with an outpour of emotions I was not equipped to handle. Everyone has felt it both good or bad – that feeling of being on a roller-coaster high. The fear of anticipation, the fear of bombing, the fear of all that comes with a success story, the fear of looking like an idiot in front of people you respect.



The other side is how sometimes we make ourselves so small in an interview, in front of others or companies that seem so much bigger and successful than we are. I remember when I was going out for my first office job. I had been working since I was fourteen but mostly in small boutique shops, fast food establishments, and retail jobs up to that point. This was the one that I had to put on a suit for and act professional and as you can imagine, I was so nervous. I would have probably offered them one of my kidneys for the chance of landing that job and I didn't have a lot of confidence in myself then. I didn’t ask questions in the interview and although I tried to act confident and bold, the slight quiver in my undertone read green all over it. Let's just say that I didn't get that job.


I read recently in a social media handle on the law of attractions that stated eighteen things that make a person successful and the number one on the list was "When you get loads of rejections, you stop fearing it. This make you unstoppable." And I completely agree. When you are in the business of getting 9.5 knows, just know that a yes is around the corner. The main thing is don't give up.


It took me at least a decade to know that and also to build up my confidence but by the time I was in my late 30s, I started going into interviews asking them questions. I wanted to know why the last person left or were they promoted. I wanted to know what kind of person are they looking for, personality wise. I wanted to know what they offered in terms of benefits and what the structure of their business was like. I started making them do all the talking, because I was interviewing them.


I didn’t want to take on a toxic job, nor want to put myself in a place that I was just going to be unhappy in. I took action. I was now experienced and brought something to the table. I loved myself enough to put myself in good situations, but it took almost two decades of building that in layers of self-care work and gaining experience under my belt, which brings me to my point.


Last week, I had a big meeting with some pretty high up execs and as I prepared for the meeting, I thought hard about whether or not I would be nervous. You know, I have come to a point in my life where I know and accept who I am. I am clear about that, and I am not trying to impress or please others. You accept me for who I am and I accept you for who you are. If we don't gel, then we continue on in our lives and that's okay. I don’t really concern myself with trying to make someone like me. I won’t go out of the way to make you not like me, but you get the point.


I am finally comfortable in my own skin, and I thought if I prepare for the meeting and do the best I possibly can, then there is nothing more to fear. I also didn’t go in with the pre-conceived notion that I need to land something on the spot. There is something about maturing that I find calming. I have worked on myself over the last almost twenty years to build up my confidence and sense of self-worth. I knew that this meeting was just a beginning and may or may not pan out for me now, but could have possibilities in the future that it can lead to a connection one day that opens the right doors.


In the end, the meeting turned out fairly well. Could I have done better, yes? Did it go wrong, no! I can’t control the outcome, but the knowing and acceptance I had going into the meeting helped. I wasn’t nervous. I didn’t bomb or get spun out. I also didn’t put the meeting on a pedestal that seemed so far out of my reach like I would have fifteen years ago. I knew this is all attainable for me and that my time would come when I am in the right place at the right time. I trust my path and my purpose.


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About the Author

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SHAWNA BACA

Shawna Baca is the author of the transformational memoir, "FEAR LESS: Conquering the Demons of Mental Purgatory," and an award winning writer, director, and producer. She was selected by Steven Spielberg and Mark Burnett from more than 20,000 filmmakers to be part of the 2007 FOX television show, On The Lot.  She received a “Mujeres Destacadas” award by La Opinion newspaper and the City of Los Angeles and was honored at the Latina Symposium in Washington D.C. in recognition of her positive portrayal of Latinos and Hispanics in the media. Shawna has been creating New Media content for corporate clients ever since and has produced a feature documentary. She is currently developing the coming of age feature drama, "Space for Raven," which was a second rounder in the 2020 Austin Film Festival Screenplay Competition, a 2020 WeScreenplay Diverse Voices - Semi-finalist, and a 2020 Script Pipeline Feature Screenplay - Quarter-finalist. 

She was born in Los Angeles where she currently resides, and is Apache, Yaqui, Spanish and French. 

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