The Story Behind Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place by Pennie Murray

No matter what I did, things would still be the same. Living my passion, accomplishing big things, having a purpose, experiencing success, hell, that’s for special people, I thought. And I ain’t one of them!

Giving Myself PermissionSuddenly, I felt overwhelmed by feelings of intense sorrow. Tears began to run down my face and I cried uncontrollably. Once again that dark “something” that is always hovering over my life took possession of my thoughts. Every time that happened, my efforts fell flat and I continued living a mediocre life. I was mourning another failed attempt to break free from the internal chains that kept me in my limited existence.

Every link of the chain had been forged over the years by the sadistic reminders of what I couldn’t do because of my race or gender. Now the painful thoughts that fortified this chain were reverberating in my mind. Every negative word that had been said to me over the years began to flood my mind. Things like:

“You’re a peon, and you’ll always be a peon.”

“You need to learn how to stay in your place.”

“You have a Champagne mind, with a soda pop purse.”

“You’re just like your damn daddy. He ain’t shit, and you ain’t gonna

be shit either!”

“Women are supposed to be seen, not heard.”

“No matter how much education or money you have, a Black person will always be less than everybody else.”

“Get your head out of the clouds and face reality. Ain’t nothing special about you?”

“If God wanted you to have better, you would have it by now.”

“If your prayers are not being answered, then you’re not praying hard enough, fasting long enough, or paying enough tithes.”

“A Black person can’t, and a woman never will.”

The rattling of each link in this chain grew louder and louder, and I couldn’t make it stop! I felt an excruciating pain in my heart, but I couldn’t scream. It ached to the point of nausea. My sadness became more intense and the tears flowed incessantly. I wished that I could forcefully vomit out all the negative and malicious words locked inside my head, and the memories attached to them. Then I could be free from the darkness inside me that was always waiting to kill my hopes and ambitions.

This is a very small excerpt from my book Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place, and a very real part of my life that seemed to be impenetrable. In the past, my personal story was full of self-doubt, fear of rejection, feelings of worthlessness, and conditioning that kept me living from a place of mediocrity and desperately seeking the approval from others. The voice in my head, (my internal terrorist) was always ready to sabotage any efforts I made towards having a greater quality of life.

After years of arguing with God and accusing Him of playing favorites, I demanded to know why – despite my best efforts – I was never able to achieve the level of success I desired. Was this some kind of sick joke, where my passionate internal desires and dreams were merely to be dangled in my face, but I would never accomplish them? It was the same in every significant area of my life. Then, in 2001 all the arguing and accusations ended when on a flight from California returning to Kansas City after attending an entrepreneur’s retreat, I heard the answer in one word – PERMISSION. It was then followed by, “It’s because you won’t give yourself permission to see a better reality for yourself. To be, do, think, or expect anything different. You would rather live imprisoned by your weaknesses, fears and inhibitions than give yourself permission to live freely in your possibilities and divine potential.”

I have dedicated the last eleven years of my life learning, researching, observing, and living through what giving myself permission means. Something that became very apparent to me after being in business for myself and losing everything twice was, giving yourself permission is the pre-requisite of truly achieving success in any area of our lives. Yes, education, professional training, and effective leadership skills are all necessary components to success. However, our emotional inhibitions can critically sabotage our best efforts towards obtaining and maintaining success. This was the impetus of my book, and now my life’s work.

Do I still deal with self-doubt and fear – you bet! The difference is, now I know what it takes to put them in their place, and more importantly to give myself permission to do it. Giving Myself Permission is more than a book title; it’s a higher level of living. And I’m dedicated to helping people experience that.


Pennie’s various careers as a police officer, radio talk show host, business owner, and seminar facilitator have shaped her passion for helping others experience their brand of success. She is a speaker, certified NLP coach, author, and the creator of the Giving Myself Permission (GMSP) Movement and Emotional Clarity Workshops™, which help individuals manage the feelings and emotions that frustrate their efforts towards success. With additional certifications in conflict mediation and emotional intelligence, Pennie also coaches individuals to help resolve the internal conflicts that sabotage their efforts towards a greater quality of life. Pennie is the author of the book, Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place and the audio CD Asking for Richer Ground: The Power of Your Words.

For more information about Giving Myself Permission: Putting Fear and Doubt in Their Place please visit the website at or contact Pennie Murray at 469-525-1156 or




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