How to be courageous in your work.
If there’s one thing I can happily say about myself, it’s this: I’ve finally learned to be authentic in my work.
And it took a long time to get here. A process of constantly refining, letting go, adding, shifting — and most of all — being COURAGEOUS.
I coach mainly business-owners (and 9–5ers who are ready to jump ship and pursue their own business). And the one thing I see that holds biz owners back is a very specific kind of fear. The fear of being seen for who you really are. Why? because of the fear of being rejected. You’ve been rejected before and it really hurt. There’s no guarantee it won’t happen again. So you’ll do anything to avoid that awful feeling again.
Worried that your idea is too nutty? Fear of being seen for who you really are.
Worried that you’ll “never make money doing this?” See fear mentioned above.
Feeling like a fraud in your current job because you don’t really enjoy it? Yup — I’m talking to YOU, my friend.
Concerned that no one else is interested in that particular topic the same way you are?
You get the picture.
I remember the day I phoned up the head of HR at a multinational and asked: “So did you guys hug your Managing Director like we agreed you would?
She laughed. “Yes we did. He was shocked! It was a great moment.” I sent over 40 staff members (who’d been fighting in-house) to go hug their MD, first thing on a Monday morning, as a way of saying “sorry for stressing you so much!”
Needless to say he was chuffed.
And then there was the Managing Partner I made dance around the boardroom where we were having his coaching session. And then there was the client who I encouraged to bring his beloved dog to the coaching session (she was so cute!). And then there are the clients who say: “I can’t believe how happy I am in such a short time!”
And off course, the many clients who’ve just cried it all out.
You see, I’ve been rejected more times than I can remember. And each time it hurt. But interestingly, now it doesn’t. Now I’m mature enough and gritty enough to appreciate that everyone has the right to make their own decisions about you, whether accurate or not. Everyone has the right to think what they want, to say yes or to say no to you and your products or services. It doesn’t mean anything. You just dust yourself off and get on with finding those folks who do get you and what you’re aiming for. Those folks who do need what you’re offering.
I now get paid to turn people’s dreams into reality. If 8 years ago, you had told me I’d get paid to do this, I wouldn’t have believed you. Why would anyone listen to me? Fear fear fear of rejection.
But I did it. I threw away the suits, I wear my bright colours and I sit down with individuals and organisations to discuss high performance on YOUR terms. Happiness with authenticity as the main ingredient.
Are you ready to make the same leap that others are making now? Say yes. Say yes to yourself. Turn that fear of rejection into an acceptance that you’re not everyone’s cup of tea. And that my friend, is actually okay.
Give yourself permission.