This is a conversation which came up this morning with a client who is working really hard on being confident, on being resilient and being ‘out there’ meeting new people in the business world, putting her hand up to be on Boards; and she is now exhausted.
She is finding herself not really enjoying it at all. Her hope is to make new connections with the intention of business growth in the long run. This is what we are mostly told to do and this is what she thought she had to do to get ahead and succeed.
She kept telling me that she was really trying to be confident. Noticing slight changes, yet always felt she had a long way to go in order to become really confident.
Confidence comes from knowing who you are and being that person naturally. Being a real person, not someone you think you should be.
So how do you go about doing that?
It certainly takes a lot of patience in getting to know your real self. Personally, I was challenged with this one because of my impatient nature.
This is where the statement “Progress – not Perfection – with Patience” was a reminder I had in my office which supported me each day.
One of the things that she realized is that she is a natural introvert and was trying to become an extrovert in one swoop. She was being really hard on herself as a high achiever. She was not being a witness to her own natural confidence shining through because her focus was on what was not happening yet, instead of focusing on what was working for her.
I shared the story about myself as an introvert with my biggest realization being:
Introverts are very good at being observers and listeners. I use to tell myself things like I am shy, I’m not confident, and that’s who I truly believed that was who I was. When in actual fact the strength of an introvert is to observe, is to listen deeply with all your senses. Your listening to what people are saying and what they are not saying. So you can actually read the play very well and you can intuit people very quickly.
I soon realized that these are the core essentials of being a natural coach.
If you are not owning yourself as an introvert and making that wrong by telling yourself that you should be in the extrovert category (as I use to do), then pushing yourself into different environments out there, this creates exhaustion being someone who you are not.
Whether you a natural introvert or extrovert, what is most important is knowing who you naturally are and what works best for you and the environment that you choose to be in.
What she recognized was that she did not own her natural strengths as an introvert. She was putting so much pressure on herself to become someone that she wasn’t when being around other people, and no matter how hard she tried to be different, she was still feeling lost without a true sense of belonging.
I challenged her to own her natural introvert self. To allow herself to show up with full presence and just be – be the listener – be the observer – be the natural responder – instead of losing her way pushing herself to being someone else.
The evolution of your natural self will shine throughwhen you allow yourself to be your true self.
The moral of the story today is to own whom you really are – be your own best friend. Life is so much easier when you are being your natural and real self.
You will know exactly what to say that will naturally inspire others. You will live and work in your free-flow zone tuning into your senses. Your inner self-talk will be clear on what your next steps are and what’s important to you.
You will know how you want to set up your personal and professional life that works for you in harmony with the essence of who you truly are. This makes up the whole you.