Does this sound familiar? You know you need to put yourself out there in order to grow your business. But you worry…
What will people say about you when they see you posting about your business online?
Do you really have the level of credibility to position yourself as an expert?
Will stepping outside your comfort zone actually be worth it?
What if everyone makes fun of you?
What if you crash and burn and everyone sees?
Thoughts like this can be absolutely crippling as we grow your businesses. But if you want to grow a scalable, successful business, you have to check in with yourself and address one major question…
…What’s REALLY stopping you?
What to Do When You’re Your Own Biggest Obstacle
It took me almost a year to say yes to teaching a photography course to middle and high school students at a local non profit. I had a list of reasons why I was sure they wouldn’t want me to teach:
I didn’t know enough. I didn’t have enough experience. I hadn’t been a photographer long enough. I didn’t have a curriculum. I needed a certification and a long list of letters behind my name.
Eventually, I discovered that leading the way of all my “reasons”—scratch that, my excuses—was fear.
Have you ever noticed that when you step outside of your comfort zone, fear is always hanging out waiting for you?
Yes, me too. It’s never easy when you step out of your comfort zone, but the rewards on the other side are worth it. I’ve experienced so many amazing wins and memorable moments, all because I chose to stare fear in the face & use my gifts to make a difference despite being more than a little nervous.
Right now, you may have some big questions. You may be wondering (just like I did):
Who am I to be doing this?
Do I have enough experience?
Do I need to get certified first?
What should I call myself?
What if I share my message and it flops?
Should I wait a few more years until I feel like a real expert?
These doubts creep into our minds at the worst times and cause us to create self-sabotaging stories. We tell ourselves things like:
I’m not good enough.
I’m not ready enough.
I need more equipment.
Other people will see that I’m an imposter.
If we aren’t careful, we can forget about why we started our businesses in the first place. We can lose sight of the transformation we’re hoping to provide our clients. We can allow our God-given gifts and talents and the possibility to change lives to be hidden.
Your inner critic will show up every time you decide to step out of your comfort zone… But as one of my favorite quotes goes:
“If you’re willing to be seen, magical things can happen.”
Navigating your inner critic isn’t something that comes up just once in your entrepreneurship journey. It doesn’t go away when you hit a certain level of success. In fact, the bigger your business gets, the more often your Inner Critic will step in and attempt to sabotage your success.
That inner critic will pop up at every stage, at every level, every time you say yes to moving forward. If you let it, it will stop you from moving forward.
And THAT’S exactly why it’s absolutely vital to get ahold of your Inner Critic right now. Here are a few strategies for silencing that voice that have worked well in my business over the years.
3 Ways to Overcome Your Inner Critic
1. Let go of perfectionism & take imperfect action.
My coach challenged me a few weeks ago to take action on a small offer that I didn’t feel was ready. I’m a planner at heart. I like having a detailed plan, with every step planned from point A to B. Sometimes that can hold me back because I want everything to be perfect. I don’t want to mess up.
Letting go of perfectionism has been essential to my ability to grow. Taking messy action still scares me, but it’s something I’ve had to learn to do in order to get out of my own way and grow my business.
2. Remember your purpose.
Don’t let what you have to offer the world remain hidden. Don’t stand on the sidelines or stay silent. If you ever start to question whether you really have what it takes—remember your bigger purpose and trust that everything you’re doing is in service of fulfilling that purpose.
3. Practice Positive Affirmations.
Repel negative thoughts. Develop a positive mindset. Positive Affirmations are short positive statements targeted at a specific set of negative beliefs. When practiced regularly, a positive affirmation can help to make lasting, long-term changes to the ways that you think and feel.
Remember: You’re not alone, and you’re not the only one who feels this way.
We are all challenged by our inner critic at every stage of business, from zero to six figures and beyond.
If you’re ready to stop your inner critic in her tracks and get out of your own way, here are a few tools and resources.
I’d also recommend checking out two especially impactful books:
- Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert
- The Power of Purpose by Les Brown
- See You at the Top 25th Anniversary by Zig Ziglar
These books are a few of my favorites and have been instrumental in helping me overcome my own inner critic, and I believe you’ll find them helpful as well.
How do you overcome your Inner Critic? Do you have any tips or strategies to share? If so, comment below! I’d love to hear what works for you.