For most of my life, I didn’t know what box I fit in. So I went around trying to fit in everyone else’s box.
Self-doubt happens, and there are a couple of simple tools. Let me share.
If you’ve been around Greenhouse, you know we understand the square-peg, round-hole.
The generalist. The creator. The coach. The consultant. The people-helper.
It’s a lane that hasn’t always received the most attention or affirmation in our institutions (though, thankfully that’s starting to change).
It’s hard to define.
The result being lots of imposter syndrome, confusion, and self-doubt.
You think you’re not qualified, not an expert. You don’t know enough, or you’re not good enough.
And what I can tell you (after thinking and feeling these things myself for decades), is that today I walk into a room with a confidence that doesn’t need to try to be like everyone else.
I still often try to win the approval of others, but I know more about my uniqueness which makes me proud of what I bring to the table. I’m more clear on my direction in life, which makes me persevere through dips. And even though I believe there’s a major spiritual component to this, that doesn’t discount the practices that help.
Self-doubt has its positive implications, but sustained, can undermine your self-worth and ability to contribute your best.
So today, a couple simple tools that help: WHO you are & WHERE you’re going:
WHO YOU ARE
This is about getting to know your uniqueness.
Which sometimes first requires a mindset shift:
- Realize you have gifts & abilities the world needs
- Trust that there are places to use those gifts & abilities
- Separate yourself from your past roles – who are YOU apart from those labels?
Then, once you’ve given the applicable pep-talks above, do the step below:
- Ask 3 people close to you, “What’s my superpower?”
- Then, the hard part… JUST LISTEN!
- Don’t defend or qualify
- Don’t worry that you’re bragging or self-promoting
Write down what they say. Rehearse it out loud. I’m telling you – it works!
Then keep noticing when you see yourself doing those superpowers.
WHERE YOU’RE GOING
This is about crafting a simple vision for what’s ahead in your life.
Don’t over-think this. You literally craft vision every day when you’re planning and doing what you do.
Vision is just painting a word-picture of what something looks like in its end state. Like a blueprint for a house. Or a plan for a vacation.
Getting the stuff deep inside of you – the desires, hopes, dreams – out, onto paper, and into real life.
You can literally just sit down and write a couple pages about what you hope life will be like in the future. And that mental picture will create excitement and anticipation that pulls you forward.
Some people, when working through this step, get stuck for fear of:
- What if it doesn’t work out? Last thing I want is more disappointment!
- What if it DOES work out? Writing it down feels like now I have to do it!…
If you’re experiencing any of these things, then congratulations, you’re normal!
But my role here isn’t to make you more comfortable. I’m trying to get you unstuck. And I know, if done right, this can help.
PS: If you’d like help working on either of these tips for yourself, join our the Greenhouse Membership where you’ll find coaching, community and courses to help you work through what’s next.