I had a bit of a crisis today.
But thankfully I was able to divert it quickly with a simple exercise.
And I got this sudden inspiration to share it with you, in case you’re going through anything similar.
See, I’m working on developing a new program right now, and this morning while having a little planning session. . . the ‘F’ word kept popping into my head.
No, silly. . . not that ‘F’ word.
The other one.
As in, Who am I to be creating a personal development program? Like I’ve got my shit together all the time. Not EVEN. As soon as they find out what a dork I am they’ll run screaming in the other direction.
Does this sound even remotely familiar?
(I feel like I can hear you say, H-to-the-E-to-the-double-L-Z yeaaah!)
And do you know why?
Because nearly every person on the planet has experienced this feeling. Especially creative or entrepreneurial types.
Especially female creative or entrepreneurial types.
FACT: Women are generally hardwired and raised to be amazing caregivers and nurturers.
FACT: We’re also taught not to get ‘too big for our britches’ and go thinking we’re hot stuff or anything. That would run counter to society’s expectations of us.
(For the record, I actually have no desire to literally be too big for my britches. Just sayin’.)
Here’s the thing, though.
Just because that’s the way we’ve been raised, and just because society expects us to act that way, doesn’t mean we have to keep doing it.
I mean, really, it’s that simple.
Whenever you find yourself doing or feeling something that’s keeping you stuck, miserable, depressed, broke, or whatever-the-case-may-be. . .
All you really have to do is notice it, and then stop doing it.
But sometimes a strategy or two can help (as it did for me this morning when my ego kept whispering the ‘F” word in my ear).
This one worked like a charm for me, and it can do the same for you. The best part was that it only took about 5 minutes.
So here’s what I want you to do.
Choose a project you’re currently working on that you may be feeling a little fraud-ish about- as in, I’m not so sure I’m good at this, or even, I can’t tell shit from shinola where this thingamabob-y is concerned.
It can be a project at work, an entrepreneurial venture, a piece of art, a blog post, a product you’re developing, a fabulous new position you want, a deal you want to strike.
It can be losing weight, finding a date, or resolving a parenting challenge.
Just choose something you feel you’ve completely flubbed, or WILL flub, and that you just know you will always be a miserable failure at. Flubbedly-flub flub flub.
(I may need to lay off the Yerba Mate.)
Now, here’s the juicy part.
List 10 things you know for sure around this particular project, or 10 ways you’ve succeeded at something like this in the past.
For example, if the project is ‘get a new job’ and you’re feeling insecure about your abilities in the workplace, simply list 10 ways you are an expert in your field. Or even just 10 solid ways you don’t totally suck wind at what you do.
If the challenge involves parenting, list 10 things you totally rock at as a parent. Or 10 times you just KNEW you had made a great choice with respect to your kid. Or a combination of these.
If it’s weight loss, list 10 times you made great food choices or exercised regularly, or 10 healthy foods that you really, really, really love. Or a combination of great foods, good choices, healthy recipes, and times you got up early to exercise.
I can almost hear you saying, I can’t find 10 things! That’s why I feel like such a loser!
C’mon now. . . I guarantee you can find 10 things.
Look, you’ve been around for at least 20 years (I’m guessing?), so you’ve been alive for at least 7,300 days, which is 175,200 hours, which is 10,512,000 minutes.
And that’s only if you’re 20.
If you’re 40, you’ve had 21,024,000 minutes to do 10 good things in this area.
More than 21 million minutes?!? 10 good things? Walk in the park, baby.
And hey, if you’d like to list more than 10, be my guest. The more the merrier!
The next step, though, is uber-important, and it is this.
TAKE ACTION immediately after writing this list.
See, what a lot of us self-help junkies do is get all pumped up after trying a li’l exercise like this, however simple, which reminds us of our greatness and our potential.
And then we go, Cool, I think I’ll go see what’s in the fridge / on TV / happening on Facebook / on sale at the mall.
But YOU are not going to do that.
Instead, you are going to get crackin’ on whatever it is you’ve been feeling schlumpy about.
Make a phone call, write a sentence or a paragraph, get the canvas and paints out, sketch out the business plan, pull up your resume and start polishing, write the first sentence of the speech, start the Powerpoint presentation, draw the outline.
Or at the very minimum (if you’re reading this at night), write down the first action you will take tomorrow. And then, when the sun peeks over the horizon, get your hot little ass up and DO it.
‘Kay, that’s all I got for now. I have to get back to my fabulous creational activities.
I’m kinda likin’ the word ‘creational’. Think I’ll use it in the title of this post (wink).