Last week I Zoomed with two clients who were as different as night and day, though each shared a similar fear.
Leslie is a new referral who’s been out of work for five years. It is now clear that Leslie has a knack for sabotaging herself. The main way she does so is through her obsession with perfection.
A few years ago her goal had been to become a CPA. She signed-up for classes and got a steady stream of “C’s”. Since nothing less than an “A” would suit her, she labeled herself a failure and quit. She says she still wants to become a CPA but is paralyzed with fear of “failure.”
Another client, Doria, recently received an exciting job offer – one she wasn’t sure she should take. For the last four years, Doria’s been working in a comfortable job that hasn’t demanded much from her. And that’s how she’s wanted it. She burned out running her own business and had wanted a job where she could replenish. She found it, but now she’s afraid – can she take on this new job with all of its challenges?
I have no doubt she can – she’s successfully reinvented herself several times. But she has the nagging fear, “what if I fail?” – and the even more nagging, “what if I succeed?”
Leslie, too, worries about success and admitted she doesn’t know what she’d do if she became a CPA. I told her there’s only one way to find out!
By the end of my session with Leslie, she had tears in her eyes, overwhelmed by it all.
By the end of my session with Doria, she had a big grin on her face, as she knew what she had to do.
Although I’m not a psychologist, I know that within each woman there are deep “issues” stirring.
I think, though, each was wrestling not only with what she wanted BUT also with what she did not want.
Doria reached a place in her life where she no longer wanted to sleepwalk through a job. That feeling of “not wanting” gave her strength to push aside fear and claim what she did want.
Leslie is at a place where she doesn’t want to let go of her need to be perfect. To believe that she could live a satisfying life imperfectly, is too frightening a proposition. She doesn’t want to let go of the image of how she should be and so she’s stuck.
Growing-up we’re often asked, “What do you want to be?”
Maybe, though, the real question is, “What do you not want to be?”
Answer that question and you’ll have the strength to choose your life with courage.
now THAT is the business of confidence. . .
Do you want to explore what you want from yourself – and what you DO NOT want?
To explore how life- skills coaching can help you live your life
with enhanced confidence – and joy
please contact me