Do you feel nervous or uncomfortable about putting yourself out there on social media or at a networking event? How does it make you feel when someone refers to you as an expert or guru? If either of these scenarios makes you want to pull back or hide then it may be time to look at your mindset to see why you are struggling with these.
When we talk about mindset in this context, we are talking about something that you may not be conscious of that is impacting how you behave in your business. What are your beliefs around visibility, i.e. what makes you afraid to put yourself out there? How are your beliefs impacting your inability to be confident?
Lack of confidence can affect an entrepreneur’s ability to put themselves out there and be visible. Many entrepreneurs hesitate to put themselves out there in video, public speaking or at a networking event because they lack the confidence.
My friend Megan O’Neill is a Core Belief Engineering Practitioner, who has many clients who are entrepreneurs and small business owners—some of whom struggle with confidence. Megan helps them determine why they struggle and what beliefs may be holding them back.
Lack of Confidence and Fearing Judgment
Megan recently spoke with a colleague who hesitates to do any public speaking because she feels she isn’t good enough and needs more training. In Megan’s eye, her colleague was already quite a good public speaker. Her colleague lacks the confidence to do public speaking and that is actually what is holding her back.
Similarly, Megan held back from doing videos for her business because she lacked confidence. She did not want people from her past, i.e. high school classmates to see and potentially judge these videos. Once she overcame this fear, she was able to create regular videos that allow people the opportunity to get to know her thereby helping grow her business.
People hold back because they fear judgment.
If you are afraid of looking like a fake or a phoney, you believe you are presenting yourself in a certain way that is not true. A lot of people who are extremely talented are, are actually some of the most likely to suffer from imposter syndrome.
You need to ask yourself how many years of experience or education do you need before you allow yourself to be qualified for what it is you do. Once you ask yourself this question you may start to realize there is no magic number, or magic certification... not really. (Though sometimes you really will want to get a piece of paper, that's ok too)
The same falls true for people who come from highly educated parents, they may feel they are not qualified enough because they are not at the same level of education, even though this is simply not true.
People will find ways to justify their fears. They don’t want to use the word expert or guru—but why? What are the beliefs behind not wanting to use these words?
There are old beliefs that you shouldn’t “toot your own horn.” Women in particular hesitate to do this because they fear they will not be liked and will look conceited, which is wrong because you are telling yourself to not be confident.
Imposter syndrome is really common - start to pinpoint where you're feeling stuck so you can start to move past the blocks in your thinking.
Measuring Up to Other People
Have you ever thought, “Who am I to believe I can do this?” This is one way we measure ourselves. We also tend to compare ourselves to other entrepreneurs who may be offering similar services or products. If you suffer from comparing yourself to other people it’s counterproductive. It does not motivate you and in fact, often causes people to pull back.
It is important to remember that the picture you hold of what someone else is doing, i.e. comparing your pricing, is done without knowing the other entrepreneur’s full picture. Maybe their prices do not reflect their reality. Maybe they are not making enough to support their lifestyle. Maybe they want to raise their prices, but are afraid to!
If you look at someone else, it is easy to fall into the trap of comparing.
Take Facebook for example, if you look at someone’s Facebook page you will think they are living the picture perfect life, and this can make you feel bad about your own life, even though it may not be that person’s true reality. People get caught up in artificial perceptions.
How Beliefs Affect Us
It comes down to how people value themselves—their self-worth. We are culturally taught to not value ourselves. Once you start to value yourself and look at what you bring to the table it can be a game-changer.
When you are a business owner or a solopreneur, you are IT! Go big or go home! Value your talents, your time and how you look and present yourself. You need to put yourself out there, so why not have the confidence to do so?
Become aware of your beliefs. Awareness is the first step to changing your negative beliefs. Notice and become aware of where your blocks are—write them down. If you are not taking action on something ask yourself why that is? What is holding you back? What part of you doesn’t want to do it?
Once you figure out these blocks ask yourself how you can change your mindset around these blocks. Can you talk it out with a friend or someone who is supportive of you and your entrepreneurial journey?
How can you change your change your mindset and be confident? And if that isn't working, book a call with Megan because she can help you dig down into the unconscious beliefs that can be hard to target on our own.