Welcome to the second instalment of my Naked Confidence™ Advent Calendar!
If you missed last week's click here for A - C.
✴️ D IS FOR DETERMINATION 🎁✴️
A turning point for me with my Imposter-fuelled chronic fatigue and panic attacks:
😱 learning that I had (unintentionally) been creating them, because of the way I thought.
I had two choices at that moment:
🤔 deny this, and stay stuck
🤔 or accept this, despite the terrible wasted years that meant I'd been giving to myself - and decide that it stops now...
I chose to accept it 🌟
That was the start of re-training my brain into more positive pathways
(and the end of my chronic fatigue and panic attacks).
And that took Determination! 😁🔥💪
And if this is something you want to achieve - it will take Determination from you too.
I can give you powerful tools and techniques, but I can't do this for you.
YOU have to do it for yourself 💪
You have to find your own Determination 🔥
But I will be there with you, supporting you & guiding you, every step of the way 🤗🤗🤗
🎁 D's ACTION
Take a moment to think about Future You, in a year's time.
❓ How important is it to Future You that you've resolved your Imposter?
❓ What difference would it make to how Future You thinks and feels?
❓ What kind of an impact would it have on Future You's career success, and happiness?
Really visualise what you stand to gain by doing this work 🌟
And use that to fuel your determination to make changes, so that Future You becomes real 😍
✴️ E IS FOR ENERGY 🎁✴️
🏎 FULL SPEED for as long as possible...
😵 Then CRASH, and sofa-ridden for days to recover.
That was my Imposter-fuelled boom and bust life.
I tell my clients, their two most important assets are:
⏰ their time - we all recognise the importance of productivity...
🔋 ...but also their ENERGY, which gets less of a look-in.
But it's crucial!
Think about how you use your energy - don't waste it on things that don't matter (like worrying about things you can't change) 😫
and instead focus it on the actions, behaviours and beliefs that are going to give you the best possible results 😎
Remember, it takes energy to re-wire your brain away from Imposter Syndrome! 💪
Don't be like me, pushing on, driven by those terrible thoughts, until you crash... 😞
🎁 E's ACTION
Make a commitment to re-charge! 🌟
Not just today (although that is a great use of a Sunday 😉)
but every day for the next week 🔥
One of my clients spent so much time "striving", in every area of her life and her career
- I gave her homework to spend 15 minutes a day in "ease"
- which for her was watching rubbish TV (something I am also fond of!) 📺
And as a result, she was not only more able to deal with the stresses of her career
- she was more able to manage her unhelpful thoughts 😁💪
So what's your daily moment of ease? 🤔
🔥 Commit to doing something re-charging, just for you, every day for the next week.
Enjoy! And notice the benefits ✨
✴️ F IS FOR FALSE BELIEF 🎁✴️
I used to be 5 minutes late, for everything ⏱
(It is actually quite a skill to be consistently 5 minutes late - not more, not less.)
For years, I tried so many things to help me be on time:
⏱ planning my route and adding 15 minutes...
⏱ getting ready to leave the house 10 minutes before...
⏱ setting alarms to remind me...
But nothing worked! 😫
I was honestly despairing
- and as my daughter was then nearly 1, I was genuinely scared she was destined for a life of being rushed out of the house, with me screaming, "we're LATE!" 😞
But I discovered the solution:
💡 I had a False belief that "I was a late person".
I've no idea where this came from
- but I believed it so strongly that even when I tried to be on time, I sabotaged myself so I could live up to it.
Until my coach trainer helped me get rid of this False belief 😊
And now, I'm on time! 🎉
(Not 100% of the time - sometimes the traffic, or technology, catches me out - but the vast majority of the time.)
That inevitable 5 minutes late has gone, forever.
And I (and my daughter) are so grateful 😊🙏
🎁 F's ACTION
So today, think about what False beliefs you have about yourself.
Anything that starts with "I am a..." and ends in something limiting is usually a clue:
❗️ I am shy... I am bad at public speaking... I am disorganised...
Self-awareness is the first step - notice what yours is!
Then challenge it - think of time when that WASN'T true.
(You won't be eg disorganised every minute, in every area of your life.)
And change it from "I am..." to "I can sometimes be....".
Suddenly it's not part of your identity - it's something you DO occasionally instead.
(Bonus points: go further - even though it's not grammatically correct, say instead, "I can sometimes do shy behaviour..." )
Because remember, if this is about things you DO, not who you ARE...
...that gives you so much more room to change 😁🔥💪
✴️ G IS FOR GOALS 🎁✴️
Yeah, yeah, I know, another blog about how important it is to set goals, especially with the new year coming...
And goals ARE important -
(no coach is ever going to disagree with that)
✅ Goals can either be helpful, focussing & motivating you
❌ Or they can become yet another stick to beat yourself up with - another thing you've failed to achieve...
(most likely in those with #ImposterSyndrome thinking)
🎁 G's ACTION
So if goals can make you feel like you've failed, try setting your overarching goal as a FEELING, rather than an output.
🌟 What do you really want to FEEL during 2022?
🌟 Do you want to feel content / energetic / confident?
🌟 Once you know that, you can have a think about what actions you could take that contribute to you feeling that way...
🌟 And don't forget to use this feeling to prioritise your efforts - remember the 80/20 rule, your biggest impact comes from only 20% of your actions...
For example, I set as my goal for 2021 that I wanted to feel
🌟 BALANCED & THRIVING
What this means for me is:
✅ a few minutes of yoga, meditation and journalling every morning before my daughter wakes up
✅ doing proper meal plans for the family, so we don't end up eating the same meals every night because I haven't felt inspired / organised
(I know this is niche, but honestly this is a big potential stressor for me)
✅ and investing in a coach to support my business development.
These three things combine to give me the feeling of BALANCED & THRIVING.
🔥 So what do you want to feel in 2022? 🤔
✴️ H IS FOR HABITS 🎁✴️
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."*
❌ It's not the one-off, big actions or decisions that really shape our lives.
✅ It's actually those small things we do every day.
So the best way to make change is by making small changes 💪
🔥 Want to feel more calm? Start with 5 minutes of meditation.
🔥 Want to feel more confident? Write down one thing every day you're proud of achieving.
🔥 Want to feel more energised? Give yourself a complete break for 15 minutes at lunchtime.
These are not big things - they're called microtries, ie small actions you can fit easily into your day.
But the key thing that makes a difference:
✅ that you do them consistently!
(That's why it's important they're small - so they're easy to do, and you actually do DO them...)
🎁 H's ACTION
So, building on yesterday's G for GOALS, think of that feeling you want to feel during 2022...
...then choose one microtry that will help you feel that feeling.
And make it a daily habit!
Find the best way to do this for you:
✅ set an alarm
✅ create external accountability (announce it in the comments below!)
✅ identify a reward for when you achieve it for a week/ month etc.
Remember, you are much more likely to do it if it's small.
And it will have much more impact if you do it CONSISTENTLY!
Make it a habit 😁
Good luck! 💪🔥
✴️ I IS FOR "I" 🎁✴️
"I" - such a simple word - but one that my clients with #ImposterSyndrome can really struggle with.
😞 Being confident to own what "I" did, especially when part of a team.
😞 Thinking about what "I" need, not only thinking about the needs of everyone else.
😞 Knowing what "I" want to get out of a particular meeting, not just being there to provide solutions for others.
🌟 One of my clients defined this as "enlightened self-interest".
If you are thinking about what "I" need and want, those around you will benefit too:
✅ you will be delivering more effectively
✅ you will be making sure wider priorities are considered
✅ and you won't be risking your own burnout, which leaves the rest of the team struggling on without you...
🎁 I's ACTION
For the rest of this week, before you go on a Zoom call/ pick up the phone/ go into a meeting, think to yourself:
🔥 "what do *I* want to get out of this?"
To get into the habit of this (see H yesterday!), it's a good idea to actually write it down.
🔥 Making sure you think about this is both good for your mindset (learning to consider YOUR wants and needs)
- and also good for your results 💪
🎁 Bonus tip: don't forget the crucial importance of using "I" in interviews!
If you say "we", how does the interviewer know what YOU actually did...? 🤔
✴️ J IS FOR JUDGEMENT 🎁✴️
"They don't pay me for time served - they pay me for my judgement"
One of my former senior Civil Service colleagues, now a Permanent Secretary, said this to me once 💡
She makes a determined effort to leave work on time, every day -
🌟 because she knows that if she overworks, her judgement suffers.
This is something so many of my clients with #ImposterSyndrome struggle with -
❌ they confuse hours worked, with results delivered.
And actually, it's the results that matter...
🎁 J's ACTION
Having a goal time for when you log off for the day is so important - particularly in the WFH world...
🔥 So if you haven't got one, today is the day to set one!
🔥 And even if you have, think about how you are going to help yourself stick to it:
✅ journal the impact you notice on your energy levels and effectiveness
✅ decide how you are going to reward yourself for succeeding
✅ create external accountability (tell your team, set an alarm)
✅ choose something specific you will do when you finish: go for a walk, start making dinner, watch some TV (even better if the thing is time-specific, like a gym class!)
✅ and review after a week/ month - is it realistic? Would it be better adjusted?
But one caveat - don't let this become another stick to beat yourself up with! 😉
There will sometimes be times when you genuinely CAN'T stick to it.
Remember: progress, not perfection 😁💪
🔥 Do you have a logging off time? 🤔
And that's it for this week's instalment! 😁
I'd love to hear which letter you like the most - email me on firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know!
Watch out next week for K - Q...
With festive love 🤶🎄
p.s. if you haven't taken my Quiz yet, you can find out which type of Imposter you are by clicking here... 😁