I’ve always had an overactive imagination. This was great fun when I was a child, when I’d access my stories from my head, like files in a filing cabinet. I’d flip through all the different story scenarios I was in the midst of, choose one, and pick up the storyline where I’d left off.
In business, this isn’t so helpful. While it’s useful to see the potential of an idea, I need to be vigilant that I’m not getting lost in the stories of what could happen – both good and bad.
Several years back, in the midst of running my business amid the chaos and mess of two young babies, I realised that I’d been waiting for the phone to ring. Unconsciously, I’d developed a story whereby a conference or event organiser would call to invite me to present a workshop at a conference. Of course, I’d happily jump on a plane and on stage and have a blast.
The day I realised this story, taking it from my unconscious to conscious mind, was the day I picked up the phone to book a venue.
Five years later, I’ve taught at big conferences, Annual General Meetings, festivals and events. I’ve taught groups large and tiny. I’ve visited Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Byron Bay, Newcastle, Brisbane and my hometown of Sydney, giving small group courses on social media and content marketing.
Not because I was The Expert. Not because people were calling requesting the honour of my presence. But because I backed myself.
The problem with confidence
As I’ve written about before, self-confidence oscillates like the sun. Yet so many of us place too much stock in its ebb and flow without treating this as a serious business liability – and asset – and creating robust personal strategies to conquer it.
Those strategies are yours and yours alone to play with. Each person is different, requiring a different strategy. But, above all, the only surefire way I know of to deal with the reality of oscillating confidence is to act.
I don’t feel confident all the time. Like all humans, I suffer from low self-confidence at times, and sometimes even self-loathing. The person who is always 100 per cent certain of themselves is likely delusional or has a very low IQ. In fact, if you sometimes feel like a fraud, it’s often a sign that you are highly conscientious.
Your resilience is worth a fortune
Your ability to act despite fear, to back yourself and to weather the inevitable mistakes, failures and emergencies that are the byproduct of taking any action, are crucial to your business’s long-term sustainability. Your resilience, quite simply, is worth a fortune to your business.
You likely know someone in business who has oodles of talent and experience, who nonetheless has stifled business growth. You likely also know someone with a fraction of that talent and expertise, who is making far more cash and in command of their business’s growth.
It’s not the talent that wins. It’s not even the confidence that wins. It’s something more than that – it’s the grit and determination to keep on keeping on.
All business owners with any experience will have battle scars to show for their time. Any famous entrepreneur has stories of flops and failures, set-backs and tragedies. These are the inevitable byproducts of experience.
It’s not the fears that count. It’s not the failures that are significant. It’s the ability to endure these and grow stronger for them. Your resilience is – quite literally – worth a fortune to your business.
Are you – perhaps unconsciously – waiting for the phone to ring? Waiting for someone to give you backing? Waiting for someone who exudes an air of authority, certainty and strength, to extend an invitation for a specific opportunity that you’ve been coveting?
Is it possible that you’re waiting for backers in your business? Isn’t it time you backed yourself?
Start now – take the first step. There’s momentum in beginning. Pick up the phone, make an inquiry. Book yourself in. Prioritise your dreams. Because nobody else will back you if you don’t show them how it’s done.
Are you ready to back yourself? Then join Hustle & Heart.