3 Questions Holding You Back


© Loren Kerns, CC License, flickr

Without fail, leaders I work with struggle with their confidence from time to time. Even the most influential C-suite well-titled leaders have the occasional quiver of self-doubt.

And it always looks like a version of one or more of these three questions:

1. Am I good enough?

2. Do I know enough?

3. Am I worth it?

Let’s take a look at these suckers and see what’s going on.

1. Am I good enough?

This is about Ability.

This has a number of different causes, and we won’t go there. Likely something in our upbringing or early work career set us up for self-doubt. This is for our therapist/energy worker/healer to sort out.

Helpful reframe: EVERYONE has a first day on the job. Even Obama.

2. Do I know enough?

This is questioning Credibility.

A Vice Chancellor I work with said to me, “I wish I’d read these books before I wrote the about-to-be-published book chapter.”

Yup. There will always be something more to learn. Get over it – what we know got us here, where we’re going next will need new stuff.
Helpful reframe: Leaders are learners, suck it up.

3. Am I worth it?

This is questioning Market Value.

This leads to fear of asking for the sale, the promotion, the payrise.

Helpful reframe: we get what we ask for. 100% true. We will attract clients/opportunities/jobs that reflect our own internal barometer of what we feel we are worth.

So let’s try this instead:

Flip the first two words in the questions.

  • I am good enough.
  • I do know enough.
  • I am worth it.

Try it on for size! Like a new pair of jeans – it takes a little while before they feel comfortable.

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