In a recent article from Forbes magazine, women are encouraged to break through the self-made barriers to be themselves and propel themselves forward. A cheer for women everywhere, yet a hard reality to face. Even though we know this, applying these lessons take courage and commitment. Where can women find that?
It's true for most women
I’m often reviewing the recesses of my memory looking for a story to tell my audiences. I want to share how I took the lessons learned in my leadership and life experiences and applied them to developing myself. By telling these stories, I want to motivate and inspire women to grow themselves. Sadly, I have many stories to choose from to share.
There was a time I was thrown under the bus by my peer, attacked verbally by an employee, and used as a scapegoat by my team when they were unhappy with union negotiations. I was looked over by my boss. I was afraid to apply for next level positions. And yes, I neglected my family more times than I care to remember.
The Forbes article
I regularly landed in all three categories listed by the Forbes magazine article, which indicates that:
My determination got me through
When I look back at my journey, it seemed just when I figured one thing out, there was another encounter to face. I came back, repeatedly facing those battles, determined to figure it out leadership. I was determined to figure out how to lead will and live fully.
Your fear is very real
Your encounters with fear of failure, family challenges and the feelings you don’t quite measure up are “normal” and very real. The question is how to overcome them. I will give you the 4 “easy” steps to overcoming barriers and finding confidence. The steps, I dare say, are not so easy. It takes courage, time and a deep desire along with immense support.
4 not so easy, steps to overcoming barriers and finding confidence
Courage is the ability to face your fears and keep moving. It comes from deep within you. It’s like this flame that burns, heating you up and encouraging you forward. The more you notice it and fan it, the strong it gets. Courage gives you the ability to do things even when you feel like not doing them.
It takes time. There is no more truth than that. The development of confidence doesn’t all happen overnight. It is continued focus and effort over time that will make the difference.
Passion is what heats you up. Think of a truly passionate moment with your lover. Now remember a heated argument. Both are passion. That heat is what gets your adrenaline flowing and gives you the stamina to have wild, passionate sex and to fight for what you believe in. Accessing that passion in your work helps to heat you up also and gets your juices flowing so you can dig deep and stay the course.
The only way through life is in relationship with others. We truly don’t do anything alone. My husband has always been the biggest cheerleader in my life and work. I’ve had good friends along the way who have encouraged me and pushed me forward. I would never have made it through my earlier career without two loving babysitters that not only cared for my children but also understood why I dropped them off each morning. They too supported my work.
It's not what happens, it is what you say to yourself about what happened
As the article indicated, these are inner demons. All of my fears, doubts, beliefs and insecurities started in my mind. Did my boss overlook me? Perhaps, but it was what I told myself about it that was far more damaging than what he did or didn’t say.
Overcome your inner voices
The ability to develop confidence and step fully into leading and living starts with getting control over what you say to yourself. Begin with the exercises above.
Take the time to grow your confidence
These exercises will help to grow your confidence. That increased confidences will allow you to lead and live, with purpose and passion and peace in your heart.
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Women leaders often hit a point where they find themselves in over their heads and wondering if they have what it takes to lead.