Quit Waiting for Approval: Cindy Hooker

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Please tell Cindy Hooker she can’t do something.

She’ll dig deep, learn more, and find the inner strength to push herself. Once a high school drop-out with an uncertain future, Hooker joined the U.S. Navy and became the first in her family to graduate from college. While she says she’s struggled with self-confidence–even into adulthood–one thing that almost always boosts her courage:

When people have told me not to do something or that I could not do something, I generally do it, and most of the time, I am successful.”

Today, the Navy veteran holds a master’s degree and multiple coaching certifications. Cindy uses her coach training and 20+ years of experience in Human Resources at Gold Dog Consulting. Gold Dog specializes in bringing human-focused solutions to leaders who want truly thriving workplaces.

GoldDog_logo_2No stranger to difficult situations–Hooker has survived layoffs, leadership ethical breaches, and workplace mayhem–she welcomes the chance to bring her unique empathy to people and companies struggling to overcome tough challenges. In particular, Cindy says she deeply understands it when her clients struggle with self-confidence since she’s been there too.

“My philosophy now,” Hooker says, “is driven by an old proverb:  ‘As a person thinks in their heart, so they are.’ Meaning, how we talk to ourselves and think about ourselves has a substantial effect on who we become.”

Need a courage boost? Cindy’s got you covered! Her message to women, “Quit waiting for approval…”

Fearless Females Forum 5 Cs with Cindy Hooker

Cindy Hooker Head

“Quit waiting for approval and to build up your confidence. Dive in…” 

  1. What’s the most courageous decision you’ve made?

I have to go with joining the U.S. Navy. I came from a small town and I had dropped-out of High School, and lived in a fairly dysfunctional home. I was not encouraged to push myself or pursue my dreams. Yet, I yearned for something more than working in a factory, or at K-Mart, so I joined the Navy. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it gave me the structure and role models to succeed in as an adult. I started college while I was in the Navy. Once I got out, I finished college and eventually received my Master’s degree.

  1. What choices are most important to you?

Simply having the ability to choose is important to me. I’m so grateful for where we are as women. Even though we have a long way to go. Every day I have a choice, of who to meet, where to drive, where to spend my money, what clothes to wear, etc.

  1. What fears have you conquered?

I struggled well into adulthood with a lack of confidence. Afraid of what others think of me, afraid of making mistakes, afraid that when others get to know me they won’t like me. What has saved me from my fears is my optimism and my philosophy that I could (and did) learn anything I needed. Learning is magical because we can change our circumstances if we learn to. I have conquered timidity and self-consciousness and become more self-aware, better at my work, a better friend and wife, a stronger and more impactful leader and a happier, more confident person.

  1. What conversation made the most impact on you?

It’s difficult to point to one conversation that impacted me the most. The ones that definitely had the largest impact on me were the people who told me to quit, to just get a job and not pursue an education, to get a job and not struggle to be an entrepreneur. When people have told me not to do something or that I could not do something, I generally do it, and most of the time, I am successful.

  1. What do you want women to get clear about?

Who are you going to listen to? You know what you desire and you know the life you want to lead. Quit waiting for approval and to build up your confidence. Dive in because we need more gritty women leaders out here.

Heartfelt gratitude to Cindy Hooker of Gold Dog  for sharing her 5Cs! If you’re interested in being interviewed for her fabulous new podcast series, Talk it Up With Cindy, get in touch with Cindy!

Are you a Fearless Female ready to have the spotlight shine on you? Calling All Fearless Females tells you how to share your story.

Fearless Females Forum is a showcase for inspiring women who push past fears, find the courage to meet her calling, solve a problem, or take a road less traveled.

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