Monday, 25 September 2017

Three steps to overcome your fear of being judged

Everything you want is just outside your comfort zone.
(Robert Allen, author/speaker)
I have recently been busy updating my social media accounts, an activity many would find easy as it simply involves updating profiles and sharing useful messages and articles.  However, for me, it is not so easy.  It takes me right out of my comfort zone and, when I wonder why, I think this is because part of me fears being judged through social media’s power to amplify public opinion.

What will other people think of me?  What happens if a negative comment is posted on my LinkedIn or Facebook page for all to see?  What happens if someone disagrees with me?
In the end I sometimes find myself procrastinating over the perfect wording to avoid judgments being made.  Perhaps that is the lawyer in me requiring 100% accuracy and perfection!  However, is perfection possible?  Can I really control other people’s reactions in this way?  No, of course I can’t, and the immediate and public nature of social media does not allow for this. To be noticed you need to step out of the norm (despite the risk of attracting diverse attention).  There is also no time for procrastination when you have a business to run!
As well as procrastination being a risk factor, the fear of being judged can be really debilitating for some people.  It can quickly lead to a loss of self-esteem as it causes individuals to become anxious or easily embarrassed.  Not many people want to look silly and this can lead to individuals keeping quiet rather than doing what they want to do.
Does this fear sound like something that is affecting you from confidently moving forward with your ideas?  If so, use these three steps to help you to challenge your fear.

1.     Be decisive – do you want your fear of being judged to hold you back? 

Your fear affects your feelings and these feelings affect your behaviour, preventing you from achieving what you want to achieve.  Don’t let the opinions of others become more valuable than your own individuality, allowing others to hold you back. You may miss the career opportunity you have always hoped for.

2.     Be curious - think of something more useful to believe

It is your thought patterns around fear which need to change first to enable you to change your behaviour.  Instead of holding a fear of judgement, replace your thoughts with curiosity.  You may learn new things that help you move forward with your plans and strive towards your goals.

3.     Take action….

…..I am now going to be bold and take action by inviting you to follow me on LinkedIn or to Like my Facebook page. Please also share anything that you believe would be useful to others.  I share lots of information to help those wishing to change career, develop their career or improve performance.
I am also thinking about making and sharing short video clips with helpful career tips…watch this space! 
Everything you want is just outside your comfort zone.
(Robert Allen, author/speaker)


Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Who is the best person to tell you what job you should do (and it’s not me!)?


We all want someone to tell us what job we should do, to make the decision on our behalf so we can simply focus on enjoying our career.

Sounds good, doesn’t it?  I know that’s what I wanted when I was pursuing a career change. The decision-making process was hard work and I just wanted someone to tell me what to do.  When I was advised that the best decision would be the one I made for myself, I realised I needed to take responsibility and do some serious thinking!

What did I discover?  I found that I was frequently being given advice on what I should or should not do and I didn’t know which advice to follow.  I soon realised I would be far more committed to a decision I had made personally, rather than a decision someone had made for me or advised me to make, and what I really needed to do was develop a thorough understanding of my skills, passions and aspirations to enable me to make that decision.

Still not convinced?  Let me give you another example….

Do you remember the career advice you received at school?

I have a very distinct memory sitting in the school careers room completing a personality questionnaire and subsequently being advised, amongst other things, that I should be a probation officer.  It was as simple as that…the answer to my future career was found by completing a 10-minute test.  Was this the right answer?  Well, I did not become a probation officer!

There can be limitations in being pigeon holed into a specific career before you are ready to make that decision.  It can lead to career paths being pursed but not enjoyed and an individual’s confidence being knocked. Many people need time to build their self- awareness and once they really understand what they want from their career, they will then be in the best place to move forward.  Many of my clients say they regret following early career advice for this reason.  They wish they had spent more time thinking about and discussing their personality and aspirations before taking the next step. 

Have I just talked myself out of a job?!  

No, because the best thing about all of this is that, although it may be up to you to make the decision, you do not have to go through the process alone. I become part of the process when individuals become stuck and need some help and guidance in moving forward.  I help individuals build self-awareness to enable them to discover and explore different career possibilities and find the best career choice for them.  I also help individuals to eliminate issues of procrastination, fear and anxiety to enable them to believe that they can achieve a fulfilling career. Career advisers can also help with the decision-making process.

It is all about you and how your career is going to fit in with your life.  You may need a bit of guidance and assistance in getting there but….

…the best career decisions are those that you make and discover yourself.