Have you ever felt like you were right on the brink of really getting somewhere in your practice, when suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, that little voice—the one you know all-too-well—said those loaded words: “Who are you to do this?”
You watch in dismay as these 6 words pull you step back from the progress you were about to make, and then you resume life as usual.
Most of the time, it’s pretty hard to go ahead. You may feel nausea or suddenly realize you have a headache or stomachache. And if your attention comes back to what you want, that little voice and all its friends still have loads of stuff to throw at you.
What’s holding you back?
When I speak with practitioners about getting the practice they deeply desire, I ask them “What’s been holding you back? Why have you not been able to build a practice? What’s in your way and how do you stop yourself from getting what you say you want more than anything else?
The most common responses I hear relate directly to some variant of those six painful words… “Who are you to do this?” … and they sound something like this:
- I don’t have confidence.
- I don’t have enough experience.
- I can’t charge because I’m not sure I’m doing anything useful.
- I think I should send my clients to practitioners who can help them more than I can.
- I need to work with more people so I can be ready to work with more people.
You can’t fake it until you make it
That conventional “wisdom” is brought to you by the world of slimy marketing—the kind you hate—and you know that’s not going to work for you. You aren’t even going to try. That’s why so many practitioners make sure that it’s not what I’m teaching in my programs because there’s no point investing in anything that’s based on a premise you can’t buy into.
That’s a great starting place.
However, it’s one thing to know that you aren’t going to show up as anyone by yourself, but the question remains—if you’ve got voices tearing you down and you’re not going to fake it, how can you overcome the very real obstacles those inner parts put in your path? How can you get to the point of believing in your value enough to create a foundation you can build on? Enough to make a living? And fast enough that it just might happen in this lifetime?
Luckily, information is a powerful key. Why is that lucky? Because the research shows that practitioners generally love and respect information enough to use it extensively in making decisions, and there are some very potent ways information can help you get out of this dilemma. That’s why I want you to have this and I hope you’ll use it to your advantage.
What story do you hold inside yourself that wreaks havoc with your confidence?
So, information is important and you probably have a lot of it and value it highly when you make decisions.
But what’s the quality of that information?
When your internal information stops you, it’s based on negative feelings and associations. It’s fueled by gremlins. It comes from a need to protect rather than a desire to grow and expand.
Getting in touch with what you tell yourself makes it possible to look at it objectively and when you can see how you create your difficulty, you can begin to get past it.
- Maybe that story always WAS hogwash.
- Maybe it needs an update.
- Maybe exposing it to the light makes it shrivel, or maybe you shrink when you look at it more closely.
Whatever your response, once you know what you’re dealing with, you have a much better chance of creating the shift you that will help your practice.
And more importantly, you have the basis for deciding that you need information that’s qualitatively different than what you already have!
Seek other subjective realities
Your own subjective reality can trap you. You know that, or you wouldn’t still be reading.
But here’s what’s really terrific—the subjective reality of your clients can begin to set you free.
How? It’s easy—very few people spend money on something that doesn’t get them what they want… so you can easily imagine that clients who come back are getting something they value from you.
And my guess is that you have almost no idea what that is.
Why? Because on the whole, practitioners are more likely to take responsibility for doing something wrong than to find out if anything actually went wrong!
The irony is that while in general, practitioners value information highly, they also shy away from getting information that would make a difference to their own particular situation.
That means that the information you have about how valuable you are to your clients is most likely self-generated. It very likely reflects only one subjective reality—your own. And you’ve probably seen by this point that there could be some serious problems with that. 🙂
The key is to start talking to clients who come back over time. Ask them:
- Why are you are coming back?
- What are you getting from working with me?
- How am I helping you make changes you value?
- What is the gift I bring, that you feel and see—but I could not recognize?
Prepare to be surprised!
You may be astonished at what you hear. People often don’t bother to tell you how much you’re helping them because they think you already know. Sometimes they think you do the same thing for everybody so their story one among many. Sometimes they take it so much for granted that they don’t even think about it until you ask!
But really, why they haven’t told you is irrelevant.
What matters is what they’re getting from working with you… and that you hear it, take it in, use it to make a difference in your practice and in your life.
When you know how others hold you, what they think of your work, how they benefit from the gift you bring, you can begin to change your own view of yourself and that filters into your whole life and into your practice. Eventually, it starts speaking louder than the voices that never leave you.
Instead of “faking it,” just take these two action steps:
- Simply acknowledge that you look different to other people than you look to yourself. Your value to them appears higher because it doesn’t come with that story you tell yourself about why you don’t deserve their esteem.
- Repeat the following as often as necessary…
“Until I can hold that truth for myself, I’ll hold their truth.”
If you’ve ever had help backing up a car into a tight parking space, you already know how to do this. You simply stop looking for what you can’t see and pay attention instead to what the person helping you is telling you. You rely on the truth of what they say because they can see what you cannot.
You’re good… keep going… cut the wheel now… good… now cut the other way… and you’re in!
The truth is that sometimes you can’t see everything that’s relevant without help from someone who’s got a different perspective.
So, you don’t have to fake it… just trust their truth and hold it as your own until it actually becomes your own.
And… none of us are in this alone, so thanks to my friend and former mastermind partner, Shannon Presson for inspiring this post!
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