Earlier this week I attended a PBWC conference (Professional Business Women of California). I had some mixed feelings about it. I’ve been to one before, but it was years ago. This one had some truly inspiring speakers but overall it fell a bit short for me. The conference theme this year was Rise Up, Lift Up. Good theme – but I just found some of the topics and speakers to be a bit lackluster. But then there are probably those who are raving about everything right now – so to each his (or her) own. You can’t please everyone!
However, I DID get some good tidbits out of this conference (as well as some good quality time with a couple women who I adore and don’t get to see as much as I would like even though we work for the same company!)
One of the speakers was Chantelle Anderson. If you don’t know her you can check out her website – Visible Confidence. She played for the WNBA and has tons of accolades for both her basketball years and her years as a medical sale rep. Yet she still dealt daily with insecurities. She now speaks about this and the breakout session I attended this week led by her was entitled – The Cost of Insecurity.
Hmm… that made me think a bit. I’ve dealt with insecurities all my life just like all women do. I’ve had a low self image, dealt with anxiety and constantly undervalue myself. And I know what it has done to me physically and emotionally. However, I never thought about it in this way. That it is costing me something – Money, Joy, Life Experiences! What has your insecurity cost you?
Just recognizing this and putting it into this framework makes me want to be more proactive in combating this and not allowing insecurity to have such control over my life. One way Chantelle recommends doing this is a Fear Resume.
Sounds scary – huh?! So she gives some steps to battle insecurity which include:
- Giving your Fear a Name – be specific (write it down!)
- Find your Weapons
- Chase Fear & Win!
The Fear Resume is one of your weapons. How, you may ask? And what the hell is a Fear Resume?
A Fear Resume is a listing of all the things you’ve been afraid to do in the past, yet you did them anyway and they turned out good! I decided to add to that and include even those things that maybe did not turn out good at the time, but I learned something from them. Maybe I confronted someone and they DID yell back at me just like I was afraid – but I learned that I could handle it and walked away from the situation with something I did not have before. These things can be big or small – it does not matter. What matters is getting them down on paper.
I did little headers for mine with the specific instances listed below as bullet points. The bullets included what the situation was, what I was afraid of and the end result including anything positive that came of it.
- Starting a new job where I have no previous experience (these are hard for me because I like to be the “expert”. But for each of these at one point I was just clueless before I became the expert.)
- Presenting to people – especially formal business presentations to high level management
- Revealing my writing to the public and even to friends and family
- Handling conflict – at work, with friends and even with my family
I was surprised once I got started to see how many sections I came up with, but even more surprised by how many instances I was able to list where I faced the fear head on and won!
This is going to be an ongoing resume. And it is a weapon for me. When I encounter a situation where I am insecure or afraid, I can read over this to see how amazing I really am and how strong I am. It will keep me moving forward so I avoid that cost of insecurity. As Chantelle said – it is evidence the fears in my head are lying!
One other thing that Chantell mentioned that really hit home with me – and in fact one of my friends sitting next to me elbowed me when Chantelle said this because we’ve had this conversation before. Chantelle just put it in a way that makes it so clear that my thought process in the past has been lying to me and costing me.
She said when you are trying to sell yourself to someone else – for a new job, a request for a raise, a promotion – whatever it may be – keep this in mind. And for me I need to just keep it in mind when selling myself to MYSELF!
Think about the return on investment for them NOT the cost of production for you!
Wow!! I did a post awhile back regarding my struggle here. I tend to not give myself credit and see where I add value to a team because I am focused on how easy it was for me or how much I enjoyed it (and therefore feel it is of little value) rather than being focused on the return on investment or value it brought to those I am helping or working with. My perspective is screwed up and focused on the wrong thing!
So, take a moment and think about what you would put on your Fear Resume – or better yet, take a few moments and actually write yours out for future reference. It is amazing how great I felt about myself after doing this exercise! And think about areas where you’ve been short changing yourself because your focus was on the cost of production for you, rather than the return on investment for the person/company you are working for or helping. Let’s work to reduce that Cost of Insecurity in our lives!