Let me ask you this question: If there was something getting in your way of having what you want in life, what would it be? Do you need more courage, confidence or commitment to your goals?
In our recent research project it was clear that negative self-talk is one of the top three reasons women gave for not doing or having what they want to feel happy and successful.
Let’s just stop and think about that for a moment. What is stopping us are not external factors like pay inequality, unfair household arrangements or structural issues. More than any of these, the thing that gets in our way is what we tell ourselves.
What is affecting our health and wellbeing, is our understanding of personal value. What is getting the way of the career, promotion or earnings we want is being able to say I am worth it. What is stopping us from stepping up to the challenges and rewards of leadership are our doubts and fears.
Clearly there is a problem here.
It is therefore no surprise that often number one on my clients’ wish list is to feel more confident, so that the changes they want to make won’t seem so scary.
However, sometimes there is no way to build confidence then actually doing what you most fear. Until you tackle those unpleasant and confronting tasks or feelings, how can you be confident that you can do what is needed?
To move forward, we need courage. We need the ability to take action even when we feel uncomfortable and afraid.
We also need commitment: to ourselves and what we want to create in life. Without commitment, it is too easy to give up and give in. With commitment we will take chances and move forward, for there is no other choice.
However, I believe there is another C that needs to come in to play: and sometimes it’s the hardest of all.
We cannot do anything for ourselves and others without compassion.
For we are human, we become afraid, confused and we lose our way. We make choices that don’t always work out and we have a variety of demands on our time and energy. We will often feel inadequate and hopeless and lost.
Yet none of that should stop us wishing and working to feel successful and fulfilled.
Making change takes effort, and we cannot always give it 100 percent. Without being able to forgive ourselves (and others) we cannot keep going forward.Without the ability to stop, rest and reasess our situation we will never find the steps to move ahead.
So before you start worrying if you are confident, courageous or committed enough to go for what you want, allow yourself to develop some compassion for who you are now.
For that is the person with who will be going on this journey.