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Underbeing & Taking action

What is underbeing?

I first came across the term through some research on 12-step programs. Through Underearners Anonymous, underbeing simply means that you are not showing up and living your potential. Wherever you land on 12-step programs, I think the framework, community and accessibility is tremendous.

I read Brene Brown’s book “Braving the Wildnerness” after hearing the quote “once you have braved the wilderness, your heart is forever marked by the wild” - and I thought, man, I finally found the book that will change it all!

The book centers around self-belonging, although at times abstract, means choosing yourself, putting yourself out there and thus belonging because you are yourself.

The first time I read the book, I did not get it. How did it apply to my life? I took my little quote and hit the road.

This spring, after testifying at the Heritage Committee about abuse in sport, I promised myself that I had to put in the work to move forward. Ironically, a friend recommended Braving the Wilderness. This time things did shift. Where was my loyalty to myself? I testified, “one day, everyone recognized that the lights in my life went out and no knew why, or what to do”. It was on me to find that light again, and find myself again, or find myself anew.

I look back at my amazing childhood and recognize some anxieties that certainly went unnoticed - I was always afraid of someone breaking in, I was always nervous around money, I knew deep down that I was different than others and didn’t know what that would entail. My favorite thing to do, every night, was go outside an play basketball in the driveway, practice volleyball on our net in the backyard or bounce on our trampoline until the sun went down - planning my life, figuring out how I could create the zoo I so confidently wanted, but ultimately it was time alone with my thoughts, where I was present, content, and myself.

After the tumult of the last few years, I longed for that more carefree, confident kid I knew was still here somewhere.

My journey of self-belonging had begun - find the pieces I loved of who I used to be with the experience and scars of adulthood.

With a little distance from even this spring, I see the person who spent the last few years desperately trying to keep their head above water unsure of the next right move. To say that I wasn’t living up to my potential is both true and cruel to a person who could not have tried any harder.


My struggle in any project that I have taken on is purpose. Some things feel purposeful in the moment, and then not later. The more I work on myself, the bigger impact I want to have beyond fame and fortune.

I love designing website - I have for years - since I first launched my blog almost a decade ago. I always say - a website is the ultimate brand story - and I love to tell impactful stories. I have loved every website I have built and the impact of the brands I have helped. But at a point, it didn’t feel tremendously purposeful anymore.

Who was I helping? Was I helping tell important stories?

With the work on myself, self-belonging, underbeing - whatever descriptor we want to use - I wanted to help people tell important stories, but most importantly, show up for themselves.


The shift in my business hit me like a ton of bricks - it all made sense. I can’t tell you the amount of people who build up the courage to get a website built that no one sees, or purchase a strategy package and do not follow through. It is chronically human to keep ourselves safe, especially in the landscape of the world and digital space now. It is safer to live with missed potential than showing up in the arena and possibly having our asses kicked (Brene Brown call back!).

I want to help people tell their stories - my number one passion - through web design and social strategy, but I also want to help people show up for themselves and their businesses. This is where my Action Partner Program comes to work.

One of the many tools I have used over the years is an Action Partner and a Body Double. The concept is that once you are accountable to someone else, you are much more likely to follow through. Why is the only person we are ok with disappointing in the world ourselves?

I love this website called FocusMate where you book a session with a stranger, tell them what you will be working on for the session and then stay on a muted video call for the time. FocusMate is the single most important thing that got my Flippin’ Shop off the ground a few years ago.

An Action Partner is more intensive. We will meet weekly or monthly to discuss goals and vision, and then decipher down the most important action steps. Then comes the accountability. Together, we will decide a check-in plan - how often you will need to share the proof of your action steps. It’s a built-in motivator, accountability friend and strategist to start following through on the most important tasks, consistently.

The only way I have found to self—belong or correct my underbeing attitude is through action. For many years, that mean’t showing up for therapy and doing the work in between. Next, I addressed my training - I needed to show up, and then get some things done when I was there. Then it was business - find the purpose, and take action towards it. Now, I want to help and share with others to do the same.

When I started my Personal Brand over a decade ago, I longed for a person who would have helped me tell my story effectively on my website or on social - what even was my story, I thought at the time. I also needed some help in taking action - what were my most important and strategic tasks, and who was really watching to see if I was following through?

Now, I get to help others build their brands, and ultimately their dreams through design, strategy and action.

What actions do you need to take today? “The magic you are looking for is in the work you are avoiding”.

If you are looking for design, strategy or an action partner, please visit for details on packages or to reach out!


Ryan Sheehan

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