In one of my mastermind groups, I asked others what they struggled with as entrepreneurs.
Speaking from their heart, each person laid it out on the table. As they shared their challenges and frustrations, the issues resonated with us all. We felt each other’s pain. Everyone one of us has fought the same battles in our entrepreneurial journey. There was comfort knowing we weren’t alone. (A priceless and intrinsic benefit of masterminding with a group of trusted colleagues.)
Some of the difficulties were practical, “How do I get it all done when there is just me?!” “What tasks do I delegate to whom?” “How do I balance doing the work I love with managing a business?” (I see more blogs on the horizon!)
Others were of a mental mindset like the one I’ll paraphrase here: “How do I feel like an authority figure when I don’t feel like an authority figure?”
This last issue reverberated powerfully with me because I, too, had been working on this particular troll.
Here are three things that help me keep things in perspective!
No more IDK
Not long ago a wise person observed that I frequently and somewhat carelessly used the phrase “I don’t know” to preface my dialog.
Wise Person: Why do you do what you do?
Me: I don’t know, because I feel this is my path, my calling. It is in perfect alignment with who I am at my core and with the skills I have developed along the way.
Wise Person: So why do you say “I don’t know”?
That simple yet profound exchange illustrated quite vividly that of course, I DID know the answer. Since then I have learned to refrain from saying IDK. When I feel the phrase ready to roll off my tongue, I stop and focus on what I DO KNOW. This simple act has helped me give myself a lot more credit! And that stops the troll from calling.
Remember the Big Picture
We each have years (even decades!) of distinct experience. Our upbringing, life events, learning and encounters (case in point – #1 above) make us who we are. We are each uniquely qualified to share what we know. When we feel unworthy, it serves us well to remember the big picture. Our exclusive life experience gives us each a rich and meaningful perspective and there are always people coming alongside us that need what we have to offer.
Let go of Fear
When you work from your heart, you can move forward in confidence. Coming from a place of service and putting the needs of others first, you can’t fail. You are perfect just the way you are. Learn to recognize when doubt and fear begin to creep in. You can feel your energy change. There is a certain tightness, a contraction of fear. Learn to acknowledge the fear – and simply let it go. Fear is a lie that can keep you from achieving your fullest potential. Don’t let it. Welcome it as an indicator that you are growing in the right direction. Then breathe, relax your heart, and let it go.
Depending on how strongly fear has ingrained itself, you may deal with it often. With patience and practice it goes away. Learn to let that which is holding you down become a force to lift you up. Keeping a sense of levity in the process is helpful. When you catch yourself laughing at the troll and exclaiming “You again?!” you know you are on the right path!