Daily Motivation I am Letting Go of My Fear
Today’s Women in Leadership short is centered around FEAR! What are you afraid of and why are you afraid of it?
Fear is what makes us stay in situations that we find untenable. Fear is your minds ability to create a story that has no context in reality. Our mind has a way of taking us to the end of the journey, and we build a story to support all of the steps in between where you are now and where you think a decision will take you. What story are you telling yourself about leadership advancement that’s supporting your fear? Could it be that you’re not good enough?
As you know, these shorts are written to challenge you to see yourself outside of the employee desk – addressing your fear is the first step towards unlocking your leadership vision.
I’ll give you an example of my own fear, five years ago I wanted to start the Employee to CEO Project – at that point; it didn’t have a name. I just knew that I wanted to spend the back half of my career mentoring minority women and men into C-Suite leadership opportunities. What sparked my interest and what drove my passion, all of the corporate meetings that I’ve attended over the years that had little or no minority representation. I asked myself, why are we missing from the room? Why are we in traditional roles when there are so many positions available outside and within our career box? (I’ll discuss Career Boxes at another time but fear can keep you stuck in the desk you’re in and never advancing to the leader you want to become.) How do we move past the statistics that say, minorities aren’t in leadership because, there’s no opportunity, we aren’t ready, we’re not capable, (you know the drill) into actionable solutions? Despite all of my passion to build a movement and make an impact, the birth of the Employee to CEO Project took an additional five years. Five additional years to actually take the leap – that smells like and feels like fear, doesn’t it?
Was it fear? Yes, – hell yes! Fear of leaving what I know for what I’m not so sure about. Not that I don’t have the credentials or the experience. I’ve mentored and counseled over 300 individuals into leadership roles. Most of them work for my existing or past clients or sought me out when they wanted to look for other opportunities. I’ve worked with my local HR in Transitions program for years guiding out of work HR Directors into their next opportunity. So, why was I afraid? There really wasn’t a good reason.
In this instance, fear kept me in my comfort zone – I’m a workers comp consultant with a great established practice; but I’m burnt out, feeling that I can contribute more and ready to move on to something that really makes me come alive. As I thought “get started,” fear said, “stay where you are, are you crazy?” I agreed with what fear said for five years. Pretty sad.
Fear will keep you bottled in your comfort zones. But it’s ok to tell fear – I’m letting you go. It’s been great, but you’ve got to go.
1. Every time you feel resistance, address your fear – can you do that?
2. Write down three things you’re afraid of doing. Ask yourself, why am I scared of doing this? Then figure out what you will do to overcome your fear. (Notice I didn’t say can do, I said will do).
3. What are you willing to do to kick fear to the curb? How will letting go of your fear move your career forward?
Final Thought – Feel the fear and do it anyway! Every time you feel fearful, especially as it relates to your daily work environment – pull out a sheet of paper, or the notepad on your phone and write down why you’re afraid. Address it so you can move beyond it.