Entrepreneurs: Be Brave, Be Authentic, Be You
Stepping forwards into your reality can be a huge step but determining to change your reality is an even bigger one!
It requires you to be brave, to be authentic to yourself first and the rest of the world second and it requires you to just be YOU.
And that final step is often where the trouble comes in.
So many of us listen to others or have others running wild inside our heads that honestly, finding yourself and your own voice can be a little tricky!
We all have so much of our behaviour that was taught to us by fear. I’m not talking big, it scared me so much I’m emotionally scarred fear but the little niggling doubts, fears and worries that creep in over time. They impact on how we live our life in small behaviours, ideas and beliefs that we don’t even notice.
Being you, first of all requires you to be brave. You need to spend some time looking at yourself and working out what hidden fears and phobias you have that are holding you back.
For me a little while back for example, I would create content that was beautiful and then instead of maximising the publicity for it, I would drop a little link somewhere and then run away back under my rock again using the excuse “it’s not quite right so I need to re-write it”. I didn’t realise that I was doing this until I looked at my own behaviour closely.
To fix this, I changed how I wrote. I installed a plugin called Grammarly to check my work for grammar and language issues, put together a plan to deliver my content to the world and then worked like crazy on my mindset.
That was the key bit, my mindset was shot. That was HOW this fear of exposure had crept in and made me procrastinate. Something had happened back at the start of 2016 that meant I wasn’t comfortable with putting myself out there because I was afraid of the responses from one or two individuals. The situation sucked, but realising this helped me to be brave, to step out there and get it done anyway, to be authentic.
Originally, my content was being re-written repeatedly, but as soon as I identified, acknowledged and handled the root cause of this limiting belief, I was able to step into my own authenticity because I wasn’t taking it all out layer by layer to make my work vanilla and more likeable.
When I am working with entrepreneurs, particularly female entrepreneurs I tend to give this analogy to help explain the journey you go on when you are trying to be brave, authentic and be yourself.
“At first it feels like you just stepped off a cliff, within seconds you really wish you hadn’t and immediately question your choice (and sanity and any other major life choices!) BUT after a few more moments, that feeling of falling actually becomes quite soothing. You begin to feel like you can breathe again. You open your eyes and sometimes that first glimpse of the new world you are in is so scary that you try to turn back towards the cliff and to cling on to it but that’s the thing about gravity, it tends to keep pulling and eventually you end up back on the journey you started. The hard part is to be brave and to not cling on, because otherwise where does that get you?
You’re just stuck there, on the side of a cliff, clinging on. You can’t go up without a struggle and down requires you to be brave and let go again. This is usually the point where most entrepreneurs begin to dig deep, it is where they dig down and ask themselves also those entrepreneurial questions like ‘why?’ and eventually, they let go again and move on with their journey. The problem they face though is that by clinging on so hard and fighting gravity, these entrepreneurs end up exhausted and miserable for the rest of their fall.
Eventually they land though and think ‘why the heck did I just do that’ and then they open their eyes properly to the world around them. They look at the cliff and see all the layers of self doubt, self pity, other people’s opinions and worries and then suddenly realise that down here, at the bottom of the cliff that it is just them, everything else was by passed on the way down!
That is when the magic happens, those bold, brave entrepreneurs look around them and begin to see possibilities, they see the mountains they can climb to reach those possibilities and they choose their own paths.
You see in order to be yourself and be authentic to who you are and what you want, you have to be brave first and that is ALWAYS the first but hardest step”
What do you think? Think back over your life journeys, when have you been brave and ultimately found the right path for you?
Pop your thoughts and ideas into the comments below