So the past few weeks have been pretty fabulous for me as it relates to doing new things, connecting with new people and reconnecting with others. There’s so much to share and I’m just really excited about all the open doors that are showing up! It is truly AMAZING!!! For now, I want to share some insights from a recent experience.
Just a couple of weeks ago, I completed the first module of my coaching certification process for LFF. While I asked myself a few times during the session, “what have I gotten myself into” due to all that this process will entail, I truly cannot express the impact of the experience and all that I got just out of the first three days. Though so much stuck with me, there’s one exercise that we did that I want to share with you.
At one point, the program coaches led my classmates and I in an exercise around sharing our vision with each other, one on one. We had to pretend we were at a cocktail party, one year from now, and the point of each conversation with a classmate was to share progress made in our businesses and coaching practices. After the exercise was completed, when the instructors asked us how it made us feel, what came out of the debrief was that most folks felt some level of self-doubt as a result of comparison. What does this look like? Well, one person shared a great example:
It’s like being at a social…and feeling really good about how you look…and feeling comfortable in your own skin and what you bring to the table. Then, out of nowhere walks in a Victoria Secret’s looking person and all of a sudden, your confidence, your comfort is completely shot!
Whoa, right?! Yeah. We were then asked what we could do about this reaction many of us often have when we begin to compare ourselves to others. One classmate’s suggestion was “Next time just don’t invite her.” Hilarious, but definitely not in accordance to the guidelines of being fabulously fierce, wouldn’t you say? Haha! So of course, you know I ended up thinking about this quite a bit. From my own self-reflection, what I took away from this was that in order to truly be fabulously fierce, we have to be more diligent in freeing ourselves from the dangerous act of comparing and shift toward committing ourselves to really connecting with each other. Why? Well, while I do place value on benchmarking-the exercise of evaluating or checking by comparison with a standard-any good brand knows the value of this, I do have an issue when we allow benchmarking to take the form of destructive comparison. You know, when the Victoria Secret’s model walks in the room and all of a sudden you start beating yourself up internally, for no other reason than you don’t look like her. (P.S.-honestly, some days, dare I say, most days, she may not even look like her).
It’s pretty clear that comparison leads to judgment which also leads to self –doubt. And we all know what that looks like:
This all leads to the question, how can you be fabulously fierce if you’re always comparing and therefore, end up in the spinning wheels of self-doubt? Well, you can’t because you’ll just find yourself in a negative cycle that is contrary to you being the fabulous, unique individual that you are. To overcome this, we really need to focus on freeing ourselves to focus on connecting with each other. What does this look like:
1-Asking the Victoria Secret’s Model how she does it. Basically, if there is someone you find yourself comparing yourself to, I have to believe they’ve got some fierce qualities and are pretty successful in an area in which you would like to also have success. Reach out, compliment them (GENUINELY), and give them the opportunity to share they’re insights and expertise with you.
2-Remind yourself of all that you bring to the table at which you want to sit. While my gut reaction was not to not invite the model, I have be honest with you and share that I’m not completely exempt from this. Comparison actually serves as a really positive challenge for me, but I do go through phases where I can focus on what I have yet to accomplish or how my brand isn’t showing up the way I want it to all the time. In our coaching program, I WAS NOT THE COACH, and yet, since I was just so impressed with the coaches, I just kept thinking “wow, why didn’t I think of that,” or “I’ve got a long way to go before I am as good as they are.” I literally had to remind myself what got me to sit in the seat that I was in, and what Farah Bernier brings to the world of coaching. Go back to the self-discovery exercise we did during the personal branding process a while back. Take the time to really answer the questions provided and any others that would help you raise and reinforce your level of self-awareness.
3-Commit to the art of connecting. When you start comparing yourself to someone, immediately shift gears and seek to connect with whomever it is that you’ve had your focus on. If it’s your neighbor, classmate, mentor, etc, reach out and just connect. See if there is a natural connection for you both to start learning from each other. If it’s someone who isn’t necessarily within your reach, for example a celebrity that you admire, follow them on Twitter, Facebook, watch what and how they do what they do. Anyone who thinks I’m not watching Michelle Obama, Oprah, Halle Berry, Ellen DeGeneres, and Phylicia Rashad, just to name a few, is definitely mistaken. Leverage whomever you’ve got your eye on as motivation, inspiration.
4-Find opportunities to share your gifts, what makes you, you. Hence, LivingFabulouslyFierce.wordpress.com and all that is to come! Need I say more? Well, you could say this is just my form of a stage. What’s yours? Where can I catch your next performance. I’m sharing the spotlight with you!
Would love your thoughts on this?
Soundtrack of the week: Kat DeLuna’s Run the Show. Just a reminder that whatever stage of this life you’re on, make it your show, and run it!