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Imposters & Saboteurs

A few weeks ago, I was working with a client who had just been offered an amazing opportunity to do something she loves and excels at, something she has identified as a source of joy, light and energy in her world. Something she is good enough to earn additional income doing! And yet, she was questioning if she really was the right person. Did those who were asking her really know what they were getting?

And right there, we had to stop. We had to call out the saboteur, that voice each of has that says we aren’t good enough, that relies on our insecurities, those we believe to be true about our self and those others have led us to believe. This saboteur shows up at the most inconvenient times and gets in the way of those things we know to be good AND true about ourselves. The saboteur stomps on our bravery, courage, and the certainties in our heart.

So what happens when that saboteur shows up? How do we come back to our inherent value, talents and strengths? Here are a few tips to help you conquer the saboteur:

  • Find your power pose. Last year, at the amazing WomenLead conference, a truly incredible keynote speaker, Deanna Davis, had an entire conference room stand up and get into our power pose. And she encouraged us to truly stand STRONG in that pose, at the moment, and in the future. So you, sitting there reading this, what’s your power pose? How do you show up when you feel confident, strong, empowered? Get up. Stand or move into it. NOW. Movement changes how we think, feel and show up. It’s often a coach’s superpower. When a client is stuck, I encourage them to get up, move, stand differently, act out how feeling empowered would look. Movement changes how the neurons fire and moves our thoughts to new places within our brain. The superpower of movement is one you can access right now.

  • Phone a friend. Call a friend, a coach, a mentor, someone who you trust and who truly knows you, and be totally honest. Share your fears, worries, anxieties and all the things that are making you nervous. And help them remind you of the essence of who you are and how it’s not defined by this arbitrary voice that is preying on insecurities. Just this morning I was texting with a friend about something I was worried about, and she calmly reminded me, “Take a deep breath and remember you are stronger than you know.” Thanks sister. I needed that.

  • Consider how being in the margins can enhance the feelings of imposter syndrome and saboteurs. For people of different backgrounds, experiences, abilities, class statuses, identities and more, imposter syndrome can be even greater. Be self-aware of your own privileges and also of the places where your own feelings of imposter syndrome shows up. Use these moments of awareness to consider what Brene Brown considers “the rumble” in Rising Strong. She talks about the triangle of “thoughts, feelings, and actions.” Take time to consider how each of these legs of the triangle is impacting the other and the stories you are creating as a result of this. Brown calls this your “SFD” or “shitty first draft” of the stories you are creating to help make meaning. She encourages writing these SFD’s down and making meaning of them before you act. By doing this, you can emerge with greater understanding of your own story and the stories of others around you

  • Change that question mark to an exclamation point. It’s easy to stay in that place of a question mark. But what if we were to instead say, “Who am I to do…!” And follow that with a list of every way that you truly are the imperfectly perfect person to absolutely own that opportunity in front of you. Be that exclamation point!

Would living more in the exclamation points bring you more joy? Consider attending the first ever Joy Journeys workshop with me at the end of January! This workshop will be held in Spokane, Washington, for an introductory rate of $45. Click on get in touch and send me an email for registration information.

If you aren’t in Spokane or your travel plans don’t currently include an inland Northwest adventure, let’s talk about online options to walk through this material and engage in some one on one work! Can't wait to help you find more ways to be the exclamation point!

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