The Power of Walking Out

“Eighty percent of success is showing up.” – Woody Allen

If 80% of success in life is showing up, does that mean that 20% of success in life is walking out?

Obviously there’s more to success than showing up and walking out, there needs to be inspiration, vision, and probably work in there somewhere too.

Last week-end I was sitting in a three day motivational sales event. I call it a motivational sales event because it was truly a free event designed to sell you into higher end programs.

I personally love signing up for stuff and investing in myself, so there’s nothing wrong with events that sell. I’m totally cool with those.

However, this week-end I experienced something akin to discovering that you’re capable of saying at two years of age. It’s amazing to be able to say no!

Walking out helps you create space for something else…

I discovered that I not only would benefit more from going home and spending time with my man, eating some good food, and getting ready for my week ahead… but that I actually felt empowered by walking out of this event. By walking out I’d be making space for more good to come in.

Now hear me out. During this week-end, I learned that the only way to get outside of your comfort zone is to step outside of it. Wahhh? The idea is that the answer to getting outside of your comfort zone must be outside of your comfort zone to begin with.

During many of the motivational parts of the event, we were told how special we were for being there. For sticking it out. For stepping outside of our own comfort zones and being there.

Yet, there was a part of me that told me that staying there in my seat was actually staying in my comfort zone.

My comfort zone was to stay. My comfort zone was telling me to be a part of this group of people, here listening attentively. Repeating words, saying yes, and being a part of the crowd.

When I said no, and walked out of that room I felt like a teenager who figured out her self-identity. Maybe I wasn’t rebellious enough in my teen years (I did spend a lot of time on the computer!) but this realization was a turning point for me.

Walking away in other ways…

I’ve also seen the power of walking away in other situations. For example when a potential client came to me after refusing to pay a colleague of mine. That situation was the perfect time to walk out, and it made space for clients who value my work and that of my colleagues.


Or how about letting go of a writing gig because it was no longer in alignment with where I was going? Totally worth walking out because of the space it created for more of the right writing opportunities to come in.

Other times it’s as easy as taking a break from being inside. Whenever I travel to events and conferences I make it a point to go outside and get some sunshine. I swear it helps to actually retain all the knowledge from the event.

The same goes for my daily walks with my sidekick Millie.

What powerful ways might you need to walk out?

There are all kinds of places where showing up is the way to go. What situations are you ready to walk away from?

If you feel like you keep missing your cue, get it in your inbox every Wednesday from yours truly.

Nathalie Lussier


  1. Stephenie Zamora on December 1, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    Nath, I freaking love this. What a concept! I love your spin on the power of saying NO. Thank you :)

    • NathLussier on December 2, 2011 at 9:03 am

      @Stephenie Zamora Thank *you* Steph! I think you know the power of saying no and it’s amazing to see how much of an impact it can have.

  2. laurasimms on December 1, 2011 at 4:14 pm

    Nathalie, I love this. During my 3rd ever spin class, the instructor kept saying “level up, level up,” which I was not about to do. She singled me out and said “level up,” and I said “No!” “Nobody tells me no,” she said. Ha. There was no leveling up. It felt awesome.

    • NathLussier on December 2, 2011 at 9:04 am

      @laurasimms Ooh Laura! Yes, workout sessions definitely have a similar feel because they push you to go further “outside your comfort zone”. I think it’s really important for us to know our own boundaries, especially physically when it’s possible to get hurt if we let others push us around. Way to stand up! :)

  3. spiritsentient on December 1, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    Very glad I found this article Nathalie! Thanks for saying something I’ve felt dearly needs to be said.I absolutely love this. I walked out, MID-sentence on a talkshow interview on Monday, completely flabbergasting the hostess.

    Note: I did this with complete love, alignment, integrity and sincerity.

    A short time later, she wrote me an apology :DIn my reply I wrote:”I call my walking out — showing the world that they do not have to immerse themselves in situations and environments that don’t suit them, not even for one second.”and”I am very, very experienced at this, and I am well-aware of how my actions affect others, and what consequences will result. I am guessing you have rarely gotten up in the middle of a conversation that didn’t suit you, expressed some love, and moved on, at least for the time being.

    Every time I’ve done it, I’ve had incredible results. I’ve either

    a) cut off a stream of negativity that the world does not need

    b) found out just how open other people are to my choices

    c) gotten people to sit back and think about their lives

    d) received an apology, a new elevated understanding, and a deeper relationship with the person I walked away from

    e) found out that we were not a match for each other, and wasted not a second doing it.

    Pretty solid results eh? Maybe you’ll try it yourself the next time you feel someone is trampling on you or going in a direction you really don’t want to go…”Now, I’m not interested in starting an epidemic of walk-outs, but there really are times that call for it, and they’re personal, and you’ll know when.

    • NathLussier on December 2, 2011 at 9:06 am

      @spiritsentient I love that you did this in love, alignment, and integrity. People can feel it, and it sounds like the lady in question understood where you were coming from.

      Way to model this for us, and thank you for sharing your letter too! :)

      • spiritsentient on December 3, 2011 at 10:59 am

        @NathLussier _

        She really did, Nathalie :) Thanks for the encouragement. It took me a while to come to terms with this.

        When I’ve done it, I’ve been judged, hated, labelled, dismissed, and shunned.

        People have claimed I do it as a defense-mechanism (they apparently think I fear certain topics or conversations)

        People have claimed I do it as a snap decision out of rage.

        People have claimed that it is uncaring.

        For the record, no human being ever has to engage in a conversation with another. No one is obligated to remain in a meeting that feels like a prison. No one has to shove down what their heart is telling them to do, because of politeness, tradition, or pleasing society.

        The most caring thing you can do, is to practice looking deep within yourself, and determine the best course of action for you, in any situation.

        Practice it, get good at it, and walk IN or OUT with confidence.

        Some of my favourite quotes from Richard Branson: “I normally make up my mind about whether I can trust somebody within 60 seconds of meeting them.” and “I make up my mind about a business proposal within 30 seconds and whether it excites me. I rely far more on gut instinct than researching huge amounts of statistics.”

        Thanks for giving me a place to share!

        • FitnessReloaded on December 5, 2011 at 10:34 am


          I would expect the TV hostess to be angry at you instead of apologizing, but the fact that she did that is an honor for her. Thanks for sharing that story!

          It’s hard to walk out sometimes, because we don’t even realize that we have the option!

          Plus, it’s the message of consistency that we’ve been getting and have assimilated…Walking out appears like being inconsistent sometimes…

          It’s good to know that there is free will, always, and it’s available for us to use! :)

        • spiritsentient on December 5, 2011 at 3:20 pm


          Oh she was livid, I mean, furious. But that’s cool, she’s allowed, I wasn’t doing anything that wasn’t me, and I was very gentle the entire meeting, even as I rose slowly from my seat.

          When we met, I hugged her, as we were parting, she stormed off, hug-less :D She then wrote me a short, sharp email.I responded very kindly saying: “I am taking this email to mean that you’d LOVE to open-mindedly hear my side of things.” and then I shared some very core points about who I am and what I stand for.She loved it, and then apologized.The point is, the walking out snapped her out of her 9-to-5, fear-based mentality, and allowed us to connect more authentically.One of her lines was “Wow, I really respect what you’re doing, and I can see you being famous!”

  4. fergusonsarah on December 3, 2011 at 2:58 am

    Hello Nath, I really do love this, you have a power of saying, thanks for sharing.

    • NathLussier on December 5, 2011 at 9:17 pm

      @fergusonsarah Thank you Sarah! :)

  5. goddessdurga on December 6, 2011 at 5:49 am

    Good for you, Nathalie. I’ve just finished reading Peter Block’s The Answer to How is Yes. One of the questions he asks is “What refusal have I been postponing?” The idea behind that question is that , if we can’t say “no” our “yes” means nothing. Most times when we say “yes” it’s not an act of volition, but a fear of refusing. So learning to say “no” to people and situations that don’t serve our highest purpose is a big step in the right direction.

    • NathLussier on December 6, 2011 at 9:21 am

      @goddessdurga You hit it on the nail. If yes is automatic, then you’re right that it doesn’t mean anything anymore. It’s no fun to live in fear, and being able to say no is definitely an important skill to develop. :)

  6. Kathleen O'Toole on September 9, 2012 at 11:53 pm

    Your pictures are gorgeous – love the red glasses and matching lippy! Good message as well!