Summer in Montana is awesome!! Yes, it has finally stopped raining and the sun is a consistent part of the day!! However, that wasn’t the intended storyline for this post.
No, what I wanted to write about was the challenge of standing forth. In the past week, we have finally launched out new website, www. thriveinc.com, became finalist for a speaking event which now involves others voting and we stepped in for the running for another event and did not get picked. I find myself feeling a bit like I did in elementary school at recess when teams were being picked. “Pick me, Pick me!” I imagine there are folks out there that really don’t doubt themselves. If that’s you, I am sure this post isn’t going to hold your interest.
Me – I doubt myself. Though I can and have many times boldly stepped onto the stage and a number of times been knocked right back down. In fifth grade I ran for president of student council. I lost horribly even my teacher felt badly for me. Still I had stepped up. That’s sort of what I tell myself whenever I get knocked down. I love the line, “It’s not how you fall, but how you rise that counts!” However, the part I don’t often acknowledge is the part that feels the pain. The sting that comes when I don’t get picked.
It’s true spending too much time there is not helpful. However, not even taking a moment to say – “ouch” – well that has a cost as well.
I wonder how others deal with rejection. Like I said, I tend to give myself a pep talk and move on. I am getting better at providing some extra time for the part of me that needs to say’ “ouch” and cry. (I hate crying – but most admit I do! – please don’t tell anyone).
I am a true believer in feedback – all kinds of feedback. Now having said that, I am also someone who reads the negative stuff more than once and can get stuck there. I do my best to take the pieces that fit and integrate the information into the bigger picture. Sometimes that works and sometimes all I see is the red lines in the edited story, the negative comments from the survey monkey or that someone thought I was too loud, angry or reactive. (yes, I do have my favorites – those words I see or hear amplified – even though they are rarely any louder than any other comment)
I am learning that toughing it out and pretending none of that stuff bothers me is not so effective. Usually, if I give that part of me that doubts and feels hurt or sad a bit of space to cry or pull in, I am quicker to come back, quicker to step back up for the next opportunity.
My mentor, Ben Wong, one of the founders of The Haven Institute, once told me, “Don’t wait for the fear or pain to pass, find one person who knows you are scared and understands the pain, then step out on the stage and lead.” I know those words have taken me to many places and stages. I do know I have that someone in my corner. Still I was hoping as I got older some of that doubt, fear and pain would ease up. HA!!! However, as I step out further and continue to speak my truth and use my voice, I have yet to overcome that inner self-doubt. No, it doesn’t stop me, but sometimes I do get griped by how strong those voices can scream.
Again, I would love to hear from others. How do you deal with those moments when your confidence is shaken? Let me know. I am committed to standing forth and I also want resources for those moments when everything in me wants to run away and hide!