You are remarkable, so you have been given the incredible responsibility of leading people.
Someone has seen something in you that tells them, from experience, that you have what it takes. And you do!
Now you just need to keep telling yourself that.
Sometimes that is easier said than done. It is human nature to doubt yourself and to think about the negative what-ifs. What if I say something stupid and make a fool of myself? What if the team does not like me? What if I stuff up? The trick is being aware that you are talking to yourself this way, acknowledging it and doing something to change it.
My negative thoughts come from my fear of making mistakes. I’m incredibly hard on myself, and I play them over and over in my mind to the point where they become a much bigger deal than they should be. It is a terrible habit that is difficult to break, and the negativity it creates gets in the way of being the best version of yourself.
To overcome this way of thinking, when I make a mistake, I repeat a few things to myself.
- You cannot change it, and that is ok
- Use the nugget of gold you just learnt to grow
- No one else is losing sleep over it
- No one got hurt
A few years ago, I made a foolish, potentially career-limiting, mistake. I submitted a paper to the board, asking for more funding, and I failed to give one of the key stakeholders a heads up. It backfired on me big time, affected my reputation with the board and created a lot of work for my team and me. In the past, I would have mulled over that mistake for a very long time, but it was pointless doing so. I couldn’t change it; I learnt a lot; no one else cared, and no one got hurt. I turned my mind to the important, positive things I wanted to achieve and got on with it.
What drives your negative thoughts? Is it fear of making a mistake, fear of failure, not wanting to disappoint someone or is it something else?
As Brendan Burchard says in the video below, “ask yourself if these thoughts are supporting you or are they automatically coming up negative and self-protective in ways that are not advancing my life?”. Ask yourself if the story you are telling is true? It can’t be because it has happened yet.
Once you are aware of these thoughts, it is easier to find positive things you can say to yourself instead. Thoughts that will support you to achieve what you want to achieve, including being the best leader of people you can be.
Always remember to back yourself because you are fantastic and you’ve got this!
This 15-minute video from Bernard Burchar is full of practical things we can do to train our minds to think more positively. Using his RWID framework, he explains why our negative thoughts keep coming up, and he gives us simple exercises to increase our awareness of our thoughts and create positive ones. Well worth a watch.
And if you’re up for a 4-minute pep talk – have a look at this Steve Harvey video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yWDo-y-tK7k. He talks about the two factories in your brain – the positive one and the negative one. Each factory has a foreman, and you’re the boss. The thoughts you start to determine which factory gets to work.
Keep your face to the sunshine, and you cannot see the shadow.
If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced.
Vincent Van Gogh
Create a table. Negative thoughts I had today. What caused them? Positive thoughts I’m going to have instead.