I was in a Facebook group the other day and was quite surprised at answers that were given to a question, which related to marketing activities. Not only were there many similarities but what was surprising was how many had the same response, which related to not putting themselves out there to market themselves.
This is a common issue, one which I will admit I have struggled with myself. The worry about being visible and being a thought-leader scares many, both small business owners and those who work in an organization. This worry transcends across all genders and ages. If not caught early, the results can be detrimental to success.
Why does this occur and can anything be done to stop or reverse it? It really comes down to thoughts and emotions and imprinting that was done at an early age. Getting to the root cause will be easier to challenge the thoughts and stop the cycle. Irrational fears result from those early experiences.
If you think back to a time, say when you were six, and you got yelled at by a teacher or parent it may lead to worry about getting yelled at for other experiences. If you were compared to your sibling or classmates (the nuns in my grade school were good for this one), then your thoughts may turn to not being pretty enough.
The more we hold on to these thoughts, as if we’re replaying a movie, the more embedded they become in our unconscious mind waiting there to arise in the most inopportune times, such as when you are going to ask the boss for a raise or promotion. Our unconscious mind really controls our thoughts and resulting actions, as that is where 98% of those unconscious thoughts live.
The key to breaking free is to identify those thoughts and experiences you’ve lived through. They were in the past so it becomes about leaving them there or putting them in a place you can put them, i.e. think of a box. Mark Waldman, a neuroscience expert, says that you can write down all your worries, concerns, problems, etc. but not to hide them as the brain will worry about them.
When we allow these negative thoughts and events to have life, they become bigger than we want and ultimately result in holding back from new experiences to avoid what occurred in the past. As you don’t know if any event will occur with absolute certainty, you are wasting a lot of time worrying about something you don’t know versus going forward on what you do want.
Say you want to ask for a promotion, you don’t know if the boss will say no; but, even if he does, it could open up the door to discussing future opportunities. Perhaps there is no budget for a new position or no opening; however, he could find a project to work on that would provide opportunity to enhance your skills and raise your profile for when an opening becomes available. It can feel like you’re up against a brick wall, with no way over or through.
The key to breaking free from these blockages is to release them. Identify the source, challenge any thoughts around them, then replace them with positive ones. I find this practice very helpful when I get blocked and know they work. It will take practice to get out this negative pattern but, with consistency and a positive mindset you will get there. Is today the day you decide to release your blocks?
If you want to stop the struggle and get clarity on your business or career goals, why not get some help – contact me today to get started.