Nobody wants to be mediocre. Definitely not me, and definitely not you. Think back to when you were young and had huge, impossible dreams: you wanted to change the world and create beautiful art and you wanted to do it now. You wanted to run the show.
Well guess what. You’re still the same young kid with the same huge ambition, only you look like an adult. More than that, you think like an adult.
Over time we make decisions and decide that we’re not the person to do those big things. Someone else… someone smarter, richer, someone more important can do them. Someone with more ideas and less weight around the hips. So we shrink back and take the “safe” route. We stop taking risks and stop going for things we used to.
But, if you’re like me, in your heart you know that you’re meant for something more. I know you’re here for more. More than stress. More than the pressure of money.
Do you feel any of the following:
- time is running out – there’s an urgency you haven’t felt before
- restless – you’re not fulfilled and want to do work other than what you’re doing
- judged by others – trigger-sensitive to remarks related to your life/work.
If you feel any of these, chances are you’re not fulfilling your potential. I know this like the back of my hand. I coasted for years before I started to notice signals around me. And it’s not just about noticing the signs and triggers; You have to TAKE THEM SERIOUSLY.
We have the ability to do the big things we once imagined – to run a successful business, to help people, to change things we wanted to as kids. But a lot of times instead of doing these things, we hold ourselves back because we don’t trust ourselves.
Here’s a question I got from a reader, genuinely struggling with his next career steps:
“Can I make money from my passion (making films) or do I just have to eliminate one and focus on one for money and one for pleasure? How can I come to peace with my work and life and just choose something?”
I totally understood the crossroads he was at – wanting to make it work but not knowing fully how to make it work.
And often times, making the choice is ACTUALLY WHAT WE WANT…We just want someone to give us permission to choose one or the other. What if we make the wrong decision? What if we lose opportunities? What will people say?
Why do we wait for permission? Because we don’t feel like we’re ready.
I work with entrepreneurs all day long giving them permission to do things before they’re ready.
Have you ever said, “I just need to get my stuff together” or “I just need to figure it out first?” I’ve said that a million different ways to myself over the last ten years! “I can’t believe I have a hard time marketing my own work, when that’s what I help OTHER people do. I feel silly.”
The truth is: We all feel like frauds. We all panic that someone will “figure us out” and discover that we don’t know what we’re talking about. People call me out all the time asking, “How can you help people without a business degree?” or “How can you teach people what you just learned a few years ago??
That used to be my worst nightmare. UNTIL…Until I started to see REAL results in my clients: more money, more enjoyable work, less fighting with family + partners, more energy in the day, more self-confidence, more boundaries and self-respect. When I started to REALLY dig into these results, I stopped caring so much about “imposter syndrome.”
The feeling never goes away entirely, but you can use it to improve your business.
Make your mess your message. Tell people about your struggles, shortcomings, your big failures. You don’t have to have your stuff together all the time in order to help someone. You just need to help them get from A to B. Often, seeing you go through the same struggles + same feelings of inadequacy makes people more eager to learn from you. Do you want to learn from someone where everything came easy, or someone that hustled every day, and went through the same things as you?
Tiny mistakes and even huge, earth-shattering failures don’t have to keep you from following your big dreams! I mean it. Think of how your lessons can help other people avoid some of the same mistakes, and SEE that you can save someone months or years of struggle.
The key is to not let these issues derail you.
Another key point to remember: We all want to do something visionary, but it STARTS in very small steps.
We want to make big leaps and “scale” right away and make an impact. That’s great. We feel that way because we have BIG spirits and should never dampen that. But nobody told us it was going to be this hard (For real) and sometimes we let mistakes tailspin us.
What we need to realize is that we need BIG strategy that includes SMALL steps. We need to match our big ambition with equal part strategy and know it starts with baby steps. Otherwise we actually never end up getting to the big vision we want.
It takes FOCUS, PERSISTENCE, SMALL STEPS. Things that aren’t sexy or big vision and actually, are a bit boring. But it’s the same premise with eating healthy and exercising – after a while things just get boring.
So the REAL trick to success isn’t “how do you make big leaps?” It’s how do you stay in it when stuff gets boring or hard? How do you consistently take the small steps without letting the restlessness and tendency to think big get in your way?
Stay tuned… I’ll share some of the exact strategies I use to run my business. Some of these aren’t sexy or groundbreaking, but they are the only systems you need to keep you going when things get messy, difficult, and boring. They’ll help you plow through your feelings of inadequacy so you can reach your potential in your business; Your FULL potential.
And remember, when you feel like a fraud, think back to when you were a kid with that huge vision. KNOW that you’re STILL the same person. You have all the same capacities and potential and big ideas; It just takes a new way of thinking to remember to inject it into your daily life.
To what’s inside you now and forever.
Ishita Gupta is an entrepreneur, speaker, and business breakthrough strategist. Building her business from zero to multiple six-figures in one year, Ishita helps entrepreneurs get the confidence they need to run their businesses like a Pro. Her programs help business owners lay foundations to make money, create systems to increase productivity, sell with confidence, and do high-impact marketing that gets results. Ishita speaks at conferences around the U.S. on entrepreneurship and leadership, including World Domination Summit, TEDx Detroit, Columbia University, and more. You can also follow Ishita on Twitter.
Image courtesy of darwin Bell.