I was having a discussion this week with a potential client, who was being held back by something so very common among female leaders – whether they are in corporate life, running a business or who want to run a business.
We will call her Jane – for confidentiality. And Jane had been wanting to run her own crafts business for some time. Many people had told her that the stuff she makes is amazing and she should be getting her stuff out to many more people, and telling people about her story as it would inspire others.
But here’s the thing. Jane was suffering from 2 very connected road blocks. The first one is Imposter Syndrome. That old chestnut. The little voice in her head was telling her that she knew nothing about running a business, and it was fine to do it on the die as a bit of a hobby, and make a few quid out of it, but she wasn’t good enough to make it work as a full time business.
The other road block then naturally stemmed from the first. And it is this. I have to be perfect before I launch it. Because if I am not perfect, then everyone will find out that I am a fraud and don’t know what I am doing, and then the first voice will be right.
Does that make sense? Yes and No.
Yes – it is a logical though progression, so you can see where it is coming from. But NO NO NO – it does not make sense in reality. Her stuff is easily as good as many other people in the field, who are already successful, and is probably better than some. Is she the best in the world? Maybe not. But who said you had to be the best before you can do something?
Was Ali the best fighter in the world before he got in the ring for the first time. Almost certainly NOT. Was Branson the best airline in the world before the first Virgin plane took off. Of course not. And was Kylie Minogue a Pop Goddess while she was working as an actress on Neighbours – clearly the answer is no.
The only difference between them and Jane, is that they all believed they could be. They didn’t waste their time or mental energy on ‘what if’s”, they just got on with it. They took action.
Last weekend, some lovely ladies took action at my event in London. They had been taking action for weeks before that actually, and had been perfecting their public speaking skills so they could grace the stage on Sunday and share their message with the world.
You see, if you are the best kept secret in your industry, then you are going to help almost no-one. And most of us want to leave some sort of positive impact on the world, don’t we? The first step in that is making the decision to DO something. Usually, it is to find your why – to discover or remember what it is you are here on this planet to do. To help with that process – if you haven’t already – fill in 3 simple bits of info to get your genetic blueprint here.
Once you have found your WHY – the next step is to get into action.
To actually DO something. And this is where many people stumble. They allow imposter syndrome to take hold, and it stops them taking any action – because of the need to be ‘perfect’ or just a feeling that what they are doing is not good enough.
And the problem with that it is an endless loop. Of course, nothing is or can be perfect. And therefore, if you wait till things are perfect, then you will be waiting forever. Imperfect action beats perfect inaction every time. I attended a one-day event recently, and watched the 2 presenters doing their thing.
They were FAR from perfect. Literally – things that are big ‘no no’s’ were littered throughout their presentations. They addressed the audience en masse (you should always speak as if to one person). They asked the audience to raise their hands at the wrong time (when they were asking a negative for example – ‘raise your hand if you have ever done that (stupid thing they were just describing)?’. And many other examples of not doing it (public speaking) perfectly, or even adequately.
But here’s what is interesting.
Even though it was nowhere near perfect, even though there was a ton of stuff I could have helped them to do better – the important thing is that they DID it. And they had people going to the back of the room to sign up for their coaching program. As a guestimate they probably took between 15 and 20k on the day.
Now I KNOW for a fact that some of you have coaching programs, or want to develop coaching programs which would have a tonne of value in them. And yet you haven’t yet started your business – or if you have you haven’t done the next step – which is getting up on stage or in front of camera to tell the world about it.
STOP waiting to be perfect.
The 10 amazing women at my WHYSWORDS event on Sunday have taken step 3. They have found their WHYs, got into action in their business and stepped up on stage to talk about it. To me they were all perfect, but even if they weren’t – you know it – imperfect action trumps perfect inaction every single time.
So well done all. And if you want to be part of our next event – email me on email@example.com
PS – The genetic blueprint really helps with understanding who you are and what you are here to do – fill in this 2-minute questionnaire and I will send you your own ‘genetic blueprint’ which will help you understand yourself so you can begin to find your why! You will find it here.
PPS – If the link doesn’t work for any reason (sometimes technology has a bad day) then email me on firstname.lastname@example.org and I will sort it out for you!
PPPS – If you liked this blog and want to read more blogs surrounding female empowerment, you can find last week’s here: ‘Almost 300k in 1 year – prompted by Finding Your WHY‘
“I’m on a global mission to help 10 million disheartened souls, who are at a crossroads, to STOP asking why me? And START saying why not me!”