Of all the obstacles to happiness, resilience and the things you want in life, the biggest obstacle I’ve seen is the same for every single human.
Here is my very quick strategy to get you started on eradicating this obstacle FOREVER – yes cap locks are on and I’m shouting this because if you don’t fix this you are agreeing to this standing in your way FORVER – I hope I’ve made my point, like I’m some omnipresent god shouting from beyond the clouds….
1. To get rid of the subconscious hidden obstacles to what you want (or don’t want in life) you’ve first got to find the obstacle. And in my extensive experience that is often the biggest task for our time together as coach and coachee. Don’t worry, I always find it. Using the following steps will help you assess if this is an issue for you. (Remember this step for the future, always ask yourself good quality questions to ask yourself if there is some outdated belief, thought, emotion and perception of something in your life. It is a step myself and clients revisit often to assess the quality of what’s going on in their heads.)
2. Go find a mirror and look in it.
3. Wave at yourself – yes, I know it feels weird. There’s a point to this, trust me. Did it make you cringe? *
4. Say to the mirror You the following statement;
“(Insert your name here) you are not allowed to stand in my way ever again, I know you are holding on to this old belief that (insert the belief/past experience you are holding on to like it’s fact even though it’s not here) but this is not true and does not serve you well. So, from today you will remember the voice changer** and you will hold on to this new belief that (insert new belief, statement that enables you to achieve great things and overcome anything here). I still love you, but bog off with that negative crap, you’ve no place in our future!”
(Sorry if the language was offensive, you don’t need to use rude words, but for me they add gravitas and make me pay attention. If they don’t work for you don’t use them.)
By understanding your first response to this task you can start to see what could be going on in your head that stops you from getting the results you want in life.
Fixing this also helps you be resilient in any situation; overcome any obstacle and dig deep within to get what you want in life.
* There’s your first clue – if you look in the mirror and your first thought is a negative one it gives me major clues to your attitude and beliefs about yourself. In the confidence course (1) I walk you through how to have internal confidence instead of external confidence – external confidence can get rocked and go up and down, internal does not. So, if you’ve done that course go back and do the “Why you are awesome” document – you didn’t do it justice the first time. Also see below for another strategy to fix this self-image issue.
** Most strategies I share work fast. This one takes a bit longer – usually 4 weeks. That is because you are rewriting the conversation in your head. However, this strategy works, and it works permanently. (2)
The above can help you never let you get in the way ever again. Let me know how you get on. I am passionate a bout you and your success in life and will always be here to help make anything and everything a reality. You are welcome to email, text, message, call, send a pigeon for a chat anytime to explore how I could help you, your life and business and team.
In this article, I want to share with you 6 archetypes that you might not recognize that actually come from your fear of success.
They’re stealthy, sneaky things and rarely that obvious but wow they can damage your success or even your perception of it, and worse of all, many are playing out automatically in your life already!
For each Archetype, I want to share:
If you are a goal addict, you are not averse to setting goals. You achieve big. You know what you want and go for it.
The Goal Addict Type 1 can be an overachiever. There’s nothing wrong with wanting massive levels of success. However, when they sit before me, they are not working with me to become more successful. They want to find ways to relinquish control, or slow down.
They desperately want to escape elements of their life; or they notice how un-fulfilled they feel despite the healthy bank balance, awesome looking life style and illusion of the perfect life.
The Goal Addict T1 is likely to say:
Whether it’s you that’s the Goal Addict or someone you love or work with. Giving them some space to talk and explore who they are is not likely to work.
They achieve big because of who they are and they can’t see any reason to change, so don’t try to enforce change on them or yourself. Instead, find out what the Goal Addict doesn’t like about their life.
You will need to choose your timing well. If they feel threatened or cornered, they will be quick to let you know how awesomely successful they are.
When you find yourself berating something in your life, don’t shut the thought down, explore it and ask yourself:
“What does this mean to me?” “How is this impacting on my happiness? Health? Loved ones?”
Don’t choose the normal parameters that you’d normally choose to work like “What does this mean to my work/financial freedom/success? You will quickly prove yourself right and won’t deal with what’s going on.
The good news about Goal Addicts is that they really appreciate their skills, attributes and successes. They can stay motivated and on track no matter what happens. They have an inbuilt determination and tenacity that helps them achieve big.
I’ve worked with many incredibly successful people who have told me they are not happy. They’ve been on a permanent drive to get to the top they never stopped long enough to check the destination was still where they wanted to get.
One client realized they were trapped on a hamster wheel and we went back to basics. This quickly enabled them to see that 20 years of striving to be the best had been great but it had been costly. They had no one they felt they could love, no social life and hadn’t been on a plane for pleasure in years. Taking the step back and reacquainting with who they really are, helped them appreciate that the person they’d been years ago still existed and they reconnected with that.
They now do a lot of travelling. They still work as hard, but the weekends are as important as the day job.
The Goal Addict Type 2 is possibly the opposite to the Type 1.
They still achieve everything they set out to achieve, however, they achieve small. They aim small, keep it small, and achieve small. And then when they talk to their coach, boss, friend, or loved one, they are complaining that they aren’t getting what they want in life.
They can be frustrated and disappointed and are less likely to shout about what they achieve, want or need.
The Goal Addict T2 is likely to say:
Goal Addict T2 often present to me with a sense that they could achieve more but aren’t. They tell me they lack confidence or that they don’t want to rock the boat. They like things fair for all.
The issue with this approach is they aren’t keen to explore what they really want. (It can make them hyperventilate and anxious to consider big goals and big ideas.)
Make use of the science of being you. Start by understanding that you have the skills, beliefs and attributes to achieve. You’ve been doing it for years. It’s just your focus has been up too close. Don’t try and process how you will achieve big or even what you want to achieve. Just notice how you’ve got as far as you have.
Know that failure is good for yo . While many of us have heard this, The Goal Addict T2 is petrified of it. It links to lots of fears and while it may manifest as the fear of success, often underling this are the fears of what people will think of me and the fear that I will look stupid. Most fears at their base have the fear of what other people will be thinking about you.
So before you look to overcome your fear of success, build your confidence. In my experience, the quickest ways to build your confidence is 2 fold:
No one gets out of life without making mistakes. We learn far more from failure than we do from success. On Lifehack alone, you will find tons of articles talking about some of our great achievers in every arena of life – and so many will tell you that it was their failures that enabled them to be successful.
Failure is not failure, it’s the chance to learn.
The good news is that Goal Addict T2 are good at motivating others because they’d rather look at other people than themselves.
Also because they don’t know where they want to go, they are easy to be with, manipulate, employ and control. (Okay you can see that can be bad for the Goal Addict, right?)
They are good at protecting themselves from failure and negativity because they just won’t look at it in that way.
I worked with someone who told me that they had no proof that they could achieve anything. Everything they’d ever achieved had been because someone else had told them to do it. They didn’t create the spark; the small flame was handed to them.
By using the strategies above, they rocketed their confidence, learn’t to trust in what they had to say, stop stressing about what other people were thinking of them or of what they said and learnt to push themselves.
Some people like to get so far out of their comfort zone they can’t see it any more. For this person, it was about small goals that added up to the big goal – something they obviously knew they could do!
The disbeliever is less likely to come to me for coaching of their own free will. They are more likely to be a member of a team and the senior team has spotted some issues that they feel coaching can help overcome.
The disbeliever has a fear of success that is manifesting itself when they fight change in the work place or can justify why things can’t change.
Be aware of the language you use on yourself. Does it empower you or undermine you? You may think that your language is keeping you safe.
Imagine for a moment that the very thing that you felt kept you safe was in actual fact keeping you trapped? Becoming more aware of the trap that your language creates, enables you to get out of it faster.
Don’t go it alone. If you are fearful of success and hold strong beliefs about what can’t be done or what you can’t do, it’s going to be tough to fight that alone.
Challenge what you believe. Your perception of reality is unique to you. Only you have reached this place in exactly the way you have, so be mindful of how that journey has skewed your view of the world.
When someone challenges you on what you think can be done, don’t’ be so quick to dismiss them. Take some time to process it – could this be the way for you to fight your fear of success?
Disbelievers hold strong opinions and those opinions have kept them safe. (Yes, you could reframe it and say those ideas have kept them trapped) but for now, know that they are good at holding strong in their views.
Disbelievers also tend to be sticklers for doing things the right way. (Yes they can get bogged down and fearful of trying new ways) but for now remember they are good at being really reliable and sustainable in what they do.
I was working with a team that had 2 Disbelievers in. The rest of the team were pretty much despondent that they’d ever get on board with new ideas and new ways of working. So no matter how much new methods were enforced on the team, the disbelievers could always justify why the old way was best.
We made it very personal to them, and talked about how the new ideas made them feel. How they felt unappreciated and like they were considered the “old dogs” of the team that couldn’t learn new tricks. They could, they just couldn’t see the benefits. “It had all been tried before.”
We stopped talking about their beliefs around the changes, and looked at what they hated about their roles at work. Then, we looked at ways to make things better. The team were able to show the Disbelievers that the new ways of working would in actual fact deal with the very issues they faced.
The Disbelievers were so trapped in their view of reality there was no space in their beliefs and automatic processes that would enable them to access the new ideas. This process enabled them to do it and helped the team see the challenges it caused for the Disbelievers.
A greater understanding of each other led to some serious eureka moments for the whole team. That means happier staff and less stress as well as increased productivity!
The Saboteur thinks they are doing their best. They work long hours (they aren’t afraid of hard work!) they go for it, they try new things but it never seems to work out the way they really would like it to.
No matter what they do, they never feel like they’ve good enough or done enough. It’s a constant fight.
The Saboteurs have it tough because no matter what happens – good or bad, they can find something to be unhappy with. Even if things are going great, they will be able to tell you the things that went badly.
Head and heart is an exercise where I get the Saboteur to just talk about something they aren’t happy with, something they feel can’t be achieved. They can talk in depth about everything that went wrong, can’t be done, and has been considered and dismissed. However, ask them to list out everything they learned or benefited from in that experience, they struggle.
Persevere because the Saboteur is good at finding what is going on. And with help, they can force themselves into looking at what exists — really exists. Head is the facts that they know (the easy bit) and heart is the stuff that they choose to think (the tough bit).
Step back from the situation that you fear and get the head and the heart to create the dialogue. Even if you don’t believe it, the facts can start to shout louder than the feelings.
Saboteurs should celebrate how hard working you are. You get knocked down again and again and still you resiliently get up and go for it again!
The Saboteurs’ fear of failure can make them a bunny in head lights, trapped and unable to move.
I’ve seen the head and heart strategy work powerfully, because you can’t argue with the facts (as much as you may try) slowly, this process enables the person to take a new approach, create new beliefs and even achieve more.
One client would every month sit before me and tell me why something wasn’t good enough and how they’d failed. Until at one session, they sat before me and said my own words back at me “I know, I’ve achieved a lot and I wasn’t achieving this much 5 months ago, was I? So I don’t even have evidence to that fact, do I!”
This made them laugh because clearly, they were getting their own new message loud and clear – and I love working with that person!
Of all the fears of success, the Half Hearters are least likely to work with a coach. I meet a lot of these in my line of business. They are often following me around the UK to hear me speak or reading every word I write online but still, they ask the same questions and are doing the same things. And we all know that’s a definition of madness, don’t we?
Half Hearters are usually sponges at taking on new information and can repeat it back parrot fashion, but they don’t actually take action on it.
They are likely to say:
With some fears, you need to look at it firmly in the eyes and deal with it head on; others are fought by concentrating on what you really want and eventually the fear shrinks to nothing because you build your confidence in what you do.
For Half Hearters, they are convinced that they have tried everything and are doing everything they can. It means that no matter what they learn, they don’t take action because the underlining fear has control — subconscious control, but control none the less.
Then, try the “And that means” exercise.
When you find yourself saying something ask yourself “And that means?” Keep asking this question.
As a coach. we get to work deep down in your mind finding out what the route issue is. This process helps you do that too. For instance:
“I don’t think that strategy could work for me.”
And that means?
“That I will have to accept that I can’t do that in my life/business/career/relationships.”
And that means?
“That it will always be a limitation on my success and happiness.”
And that means?
“That I will always fear this.”
This process helps you see what’s happening to you because you won’t attempt something new.
Now use the “If I knew, what could I do” exercise. For this, suspend reality for a moment. Get the magic wand out. Get creative. There’s no limitation on your time, health, finances, abilities, skills or beliefs – with that in mind how would you answer the first statement again?
And yes, I know for many, this is way out of your comfort zone, but the least creative clients are able to find some insight too. So stick with it.
“I don’t think that strategy could work for me.”
If I knew, what could I do?
“If I knew it would work, I could do it.”
This then enables you to start breaking down a lifetime of beliefs around the dangers of the fear of success.
The good news for the Half Hearters is that they are great at learning new ideas even if they don’t employ them. They are happy where they are (usually because they are un-keen to look too far ahead for fear that they will fail at it!)
A client came to me and said they felt their fear of success and that it meant they rarely applied themselves.
From the “And that means” exercise, we were able to see what was the underlining issue. They really feared what other people thought of them. They’d been bullied as a child and in their first job and it had stuck around in their head telling them to just hide in the office and don’t stand out. It meant they now felt overlooked and unappreciated.
Dealing with their fear of success and what people thought of them meant they learned to employ communication skills they already knew but were too fearful to use. And then, they got not one but 2 pay rises and promotions!
Inventors are awesome to coach because they get results fast. It’s a great example of how you can change the results you get in an instant because it’s about what you think before what you do.
Inventors create a perception of reality that supports where they are. It means that they don’t notice the fear of success that exists at all!
Inventors are likely to say:
Inventors need someone to hold their hand to overcome their fear. Their ability to create, nurture and believe their own version of reality keeps them safe and it makes it very hard to escape on their own.
More than any other archetype, the Inventor has to strip back what they think and find its source. Going it alone is not a great option because the Inventor can constantly recreate reality to support where they are.
Having someone to help them confront what they believe to be true really can help. Don’t ask your partner or friend because they just want you to be happy (more than successful) and don’t want to see you upset.
I have had hundreds and hundreds of people cry in a coaching session and be mortified by it, but it’s in that moment of tears that they have realized what the fear has done to them, how it has stopped them and a complete release that there really is a new way they could think to get what they want.
Don’t go it alone, find someone who you can trust to challenge you in a supporting way that suits you. Some people like a kick butt approach and others need a gentle gentle approach – start by thinking what your approach might be.
It’s funny how quick the right people and opportunities crop up when you are looking in the right direction.
And most importantly, don’t berate yourself for who you are. When you start to break down your perception of reality, most of my clients discover how awesome they really are and their new perception of reality is far better (and quite often instant!)
The Inventors don’t tend to like looking too closely at their emotions and feelings. If they do, then their perception of reality can get dislodged. So they tend to be strong people.
That strength is so important, it enables you to be resilient and determined. Both of these are critical when you face up to your fears.
I was working with a team of people who had 2 inventors in their group. They weren’t very good at coming up with new ideas (like the rest of the team) and didn’t like being challenged.
By helping them to see that other perceptions of reality existed for other members of the team, they could start to see that they could choose to see things differently if they wanted to.
The trick was in getting them to appreciate the need for change and then giving them the safe zone to challenge what they thought.
With the right support, they were actually the fastest to adopt new ideas because they could quickly create a reality to support the new way of thinking, cool right?
Of all the fears that attack your life, ultimately their role is to lower your confidence levels, keep you trapped and stop you from what you want in life.
By being brave enough to notice them, you are well on the road to fixing them. Therefore wherever you are today, that’s a great starting point, remember that.
Not only do I write for my blog and clients blogs I also write for many international publications.
Here is a round up of the latest articles;
I won’t shy away from difficult conversations and I will always be honest with you. Here’s my article for Thrive Global when earlier this year I was suffering from depression. About the day social media saved my sanity.
Don’t see something what you need on my site, amongst my courses or social media videos?
Please feel free to get in touch and let me know how I can help.
The STS (Shiny Thing Syndrome) is when you are working towards your goal and then a new idea, new opportunity, or a new “expert” comes along and you think “Oooo this could work faster, easier, with less work, money, time, effort.” Basically, the idea takes weight in your mind that the course of action you are taking is not going to get you to your dream destination and that you need to look somewhere else to get the results you want. And before you know it you’ve signed up to a new course, a new way of thinking, the next “guru” or book that has all the answers. And guess what?
3 to 6 months later you are starting to lose momentum with what this course of action required and are already looking around thinking things like;
Whatever your train of thought it will be a pattern of thinking that takes you away from your action and focus and in a new direction. Hence the “oooo shiny thing syndrome” because you are easily getting distracted to move in a new direction and not stick with what you are doing.
Why is this such an obstacle to success? Because if you keep moving in new directions all of the time you can end up going around in circles, never getting anywhere!
So the next time The STS hits what can you do about it?;
One of the reasons we flit from one idea, goal, target, guru to another is because we lose sight of what matters to us. We are so keen to learn and strive for greatness that we forget to remember our brain has not read the memo and doesn’t know you are supposed to be achieving according to someone else’s definition of success. As such before you choose even one action you need to know what matters to you most. Because when you know what your driving forces are in life then you keep moving towards them.
ACTION; think about something right now that you care passionately about. Maybe it’s your partner, your dog, your kids, animal welfare, and end to starvation, a charity or a cause. Now imagine someone suggested you dump that and go for the Anti Oxygen Society as the thing you care most about. Crazy notion right?
Now bring it back and think about that thing you care about with all of your heart and mind, on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being the most powerful);
If not then you are not living to your core values. In chapter 1 of my book Fight the fear, there’s an exercise that will take you between 20 minutes and 1 hour, go back and do that now. And if you have already done this exercise, do it again! (Your core values could have altered or you haven’t appreciated their value to your success.) You can not achieve what your heart does not truly desire.
It’s all well and good to create goals, however, are they so crystal clear that you can feel like they already exist?
From the age of 8, I wanted to be a published author, and despite serious illness and only working part time I knew with every fibre of my being it was going to happen. Now, this is not just magic thinking, or the power of the secret. Yes, it started with a goal I would do anything to achieve, however it then had the right actions and beliefs to ensure I worked tirelessly and without fault to that goal.
ACTION; We will look at your actions in more detail in top tip 4 and top tip 6, however for now ask yourself;
This one is where you really only notice you’ve slipped from positive action to negative action when it’s too late because it doesn’t feel like you are doing anything wrong. If anything it can feel like you are taking control and stepping it up a gear. However one of the quickest ways to Shiny Thing Syndrome is to listen to every new idea that comes along. As much as there are tonnes of great books out there, with the best will in the world you can only physically read one word at a time, so taking on 10 books with 10 lots of actions, ideas and opinions is not going to work.
One thing at a time. And that means ignoring the rest. It doesn’t mean forever, however it does mean that you don’t keep looking over your shoulder for a faster, easier, quicker way to get where you want to get.
ACTION; So ignore other experts, for now, ignore other ideas, ignore new ways and most importantly at this stage ignore the competition. They are on their path and you are on yours. And as we’ve already established if you keep changing direction you end up going in circles, and like wise if you keep jumping on other people’s paths you get other people’s destinations!
You wouldn’t arrive at the airport and say “I will go where he is going” oblivious to the destination of the man in front of you in the queue, so why do it with your success? You are on your path, heading in your direction. By ignoring everyone else for a while you can concentrate on getting there. Remember with success there has to come failure. And you can’t know if you are on the right path until you have actually travelled on it. Changing lanes gives you no information to enable you to appreciate what really works for you.
You have probably heard from a lot of experts that you need to be focused right? And another reason the STS hits is because you start to question if this is the right way to go;
As we looked at in Top Tip 3 you need to explore one path at a time. Experience the failure so that you can understand;
ACTION; When you remember that staying focused on the plan of action you have decided on you can challenge yourself with questions like;
And you are likely to discover you are agreeing to confusion, procrastination and worry that you are doing the wrong thing or that it is not going to work. The only way you can know if it is going to work is by actually sticking with it. (And there is more advice about that in top tip 6)
A quick search on Google showed me that there are literally hundreds of diets that I could use. And yet still new ones are invented, why? Ultimately our bodies still have the same components in it that they had in them 50 years ago so why the new diet trends? Because we don’t want to do what we need to do.
The fact is that actually to a degree one size does fit all when it comes to weight loss – as one friend put it (a bit crudely!)“You’ve got to move more, eat less and go to the loo more” That’s it. No rocket science. And yet if to lose weight it just takes 13 words why is the diet industry worth over $60 billion dollars! It reinforces that one size can fit all.
ACTION; Stop doing new stuff and stick with what needs to be done. It is highly likely you’ve heard the saying that is reported to have come from Einstein (but just as likely to be Franklin, Twain or Rita Mae Brown!) “The definition of insanity is to do the same thing and expect different results.” And yet we’ve become so obsessed with the idea of doing new things that we forget to keep going. Remember 1 more book, 1 more expert, 1 new opportunity is all distracting you. Therefore become aware of your desire to go for something new all of the time;
When does it happen?
Is it within weeks of getting started with a goal?”
“Is it when things get tough, scary or out of your comfort zone?”
Instead of moving in a new direction, tackle the underlining cause of distraction and redirection.
When The STS hits you how will you stay accountable? It is all too easy to turn to your new idea, guru, book and say “this last idea didn’t get me to where I wanted to go, you will won’t you!”
ACTION; Before you move on again, stop and ask yourself (honestly) if you are taking responsibility and ownership;
Remember your environment can impact on your actions and The STS as much as your attitude and belief, thus;
Mastermind groups, networking groups, friends, relatives, colleagues, can all come under these categories; ie they are either going to help you stay focused and accountable for the end result or they are going to distract you with ideas like;
Remember other people are on their own agenda, and because they love and care about you (or want the opportunity themselves!) they may wish you to stop going for your goals and sometimes that desire is subconscious so they don’t’ even know they are doing this to you!
Do you remember as a child when things got tough, you would turn to your parents and either cry, whinge, or share your fears that you’d never be able to do it?
And what did your parents do? They reassured you, they showed you they believed in you and they encouraged you to keep going. None of us get up and walk for the first time without a few slips. And your parents had no way of knowing completely that you could do it. It was their job to encourage, motivate and support so you kept believing in yourself. Just think of it like riding a bike, how tough did that feel? Have you ever taught a child to ride a bike? It can be really tough to work out what to say or do so you just keep encouraging and supporting, who is doing that for you now?
Ultimately The STS is about negative emotions hitting you and making you question and second guess your choice of action and goal. And as scary as it can be to step out of your comfort zone or to keep going when you don’t feel like you are getting somewhere you have to “just do it”. There’s a reason why Nike is still using that tagline, because ultimately when it comes to succeeding that is what your success needs.
No one gets on the track and runs their personal best the first time. Formula 1 racing drivers don’t start in F1 Cars, they start in go carts!
ACTION: Just do it! I appreciate that you might be thinking “That is easier said than done Mandie!” okay so ask yourself;
Fight that fear, because ultimately I believe in you, I’ve seen people like you take responsibility, ownership, set the goals, live to their core values, adjust their beliefs and achieve big, so what evidence are you relying on to the contrary? And if you need new people in your team to ensure you get there, feel free to give me a call anytime.
Recently I was interviewed by best selling international author and speaker Gordon Tredgold. He asked to interview me because he had read my book and wanted more insights into the ideas and how I came up with them. (Especially since as Gordon mentions in the interview he got half way through “Fight the Fear – How to beat your negative mindset and win in life” and took action.)
It’s a 40 minutes show where Gordon asked me anything he wanted to and knew that I would answer honestly and with as many good ideas as I could squeeze into the time.
Within the first week it had over 10,000 hits!
And led to Gordon writing an article for Inc about my book which you can read here.
Next thing I know Gordon is getting in touch from his home in the US to say “Check out your book being in Maddyness!” Which is a huge French publication that translated Gordon’s article from Inc.! Check it out here.
To say things are going well with the book would be an understatement. And I love the fact that for just £12.99 people around the world are getting to access these life changing, mind altering tools and techniques that as Gordon says “really work”.
A massive thank you to Gordon, (an international speaker and author that if he is not on your radar you need to get him on it!) and thank you for helping to raise awareness of my work. It really is a mutual love in with us two!
Learn more about why I think Gordon is so awesome on his website here.
And coming soon in my newsletter is news of 2 events that I’m incredibly chuffed to be asked to speak at looking at creative thinking, the fears that I cover in the book and how I was asked to become a writer for one of the UK’s leading non fiction publishers, Pearson’s.
When I wrote a chapter in my book about the biggest fears that impact on success, the one chapter that my publishers were not sure that was right for the book, was this one. “Is it really that big a fear?” they asked. And that fear, is the fear to take time off.
And I bet there are many that read this article that think “I go on holiday, fearlessly, what are you talking about?!?”
The fact is over many years of working with people looking to achieve more, so many fear actually stepping away from work and being in the moment. But what is the big deal?
Why do you need to turn your phone off to succeed?
Why should you leave the laptop in a different time zone?
5 reasons to leave it all behind;
So do you still think its pointless to turn off that phone and disconnect from the work place?
Do you still question the benefits to your success of riding the bike, building the sandcastle or prodding a barbecue?
If I’ve got your attention and you know you should turn off your business for a few days, and then find yourself answering “Just this email honey, then I will be there, promise” then here are my top tips to actually being in the moment. Turning your back on your business and fully engaging in something else for a few days of R n R, relaxation, no results fun.
Top tips to dealing with the fear of taking time out;
Know your success. To be able to walk away, first of all need you to appreciate how awesome you are. In my book we use this tool in a different way to power up your success, but here by accepting that you do achieve. That you do win. That you do know how to get what you want, you are able to see and accept the successes you’ve had.
Now if your version of success turns out to mean you’ve worked 17 hour days, 7 days a week and will hand on heart tell me that “it’s the only way it could be done” 2 things – Firstly it’s a long term recipe for disaster, because you are not a robot and your body will make you rest at some stage. The old adage that there’s no rest for the wicked is not one you want applied to you. Or if you are one for the saying “rest is for when you are dead”. Reframe that one because too many people’s lives are cut short because stress, overwork and a lack of time for health and relaxation were not part of the game plan for success. If you really fear taking time out, think of a time when you failed astronomically. How did you get over it? The fact is if you take 2 weeks off and you came back to discover your worst case scenario had in actual fact happened, you have the facts that you could overcome that level of adversity and still be a success. (See below on how to ensure worst case scenario doesn’t happen!)
Trust you will get the results you want. And to do this you need to know what those results are. However you choose to do it you need to take the time to plan your success. Whether you love a vision board, a written plan, a mindmap or a diary with time scheduled to work on your success, you still need to know what your success looks like. What does success look like to you? What goals have you planned? By when? Knowing this helps you schedule in time for time out.
Your Success/Business is in good hand. When someone fears taking time out and I challenge them on that, they often realise that in their mind I’m suggesting they walk out of the office right now and stop work for 2 weeks without planning. As with all things connected to your success it needs to be planned. This not only ensures you come back rested and happy it ensures that those you work with don’t throw things at you on your return! Just as you would plan your holiday – plan what will happen while your way. Who is in charge? What protocol is to be adhered to? What constitutes an emergency to contact you? If you own a small business you can automate your social media so that people think you are still in the country at your desk. (The only downside I’ve found to this, and you are hearing from a holiday lover who had 42 days holiday last year and couldn’t even tell you where her phone was! Is that LinkedIn and Facebook have not yet set up a holiday message for messages. You can for your business page, but not (as yet) for your personal page.) So respect your team, customers and suppliers, talk about your plans well in advance so that everyone can ensure they have what they need from you. And they in turn will respect your time off. I read about a CEO who never checked anything on his phone after 7pm. Everyone in the company knew this and respected this. Why? I wouldn’t mind betting it’s because every single action that the CEO took every moment of every day was respectful to the staff, the board, the share holders, suppliers and the success of that company. Everyone agreed that he deserved that time to himself for whatever purpose he wanted.
Lastly ask yourself. What kind of a role model are you to your friends and family? You may love 24/7 work but it is not good for you whether you like it or not and what kind of ambassador are you for success?
Are you in effect saying that unless you work 24/7 you can’t be successful?
Have you ever considered that those around you could possibly be suffering trying to keep up with your insane working hours? Not everyone can work 24/7. What levels of guilt and inferiorty get created by someone at work who never seems to take time off?
Success can be made easier and faster with the right actions (trust me, it’s what I do for a living!) but by not taking time off you could be showcasing that the only way to success is back breaking, soul destroying hours. That’s a belief that says to achieve, it has to be really really hard work. Why not try a new belief that says, “I can easily plan for my success and get what I want and still nurture my mind, body and soul and respect the ones that I love.”
Your mind is powerful tool, and if you tell it that it needs to be very hard work and near on impossible to achieve success, your brain will go out its way to prove you right. Be a role model that the next generation can look to and think “Wow a great career, a happy life and people that love them, that’s awesome!” Too many people sacrifice marriages or relationships in the name of success and it doesn’t have to happen.
The fact is that if you plan, automate and cater for holidays then it truly can be an opportunity for your success. While my phone has been switched off I’ve won awards, had free PR in the national press, gained new clients, new sales and even speaking engagements! Now that is defining how you want success and getting it on those terms!
I hope this proves a useful guide to getting a guilt free time away from your career, however it is not time away from your success. Savvy people know that taking time out is a critical part of their success. Do you?
I’ve never been busier with my coaching practice for business men and women and although I’m more than happy to concentrate on business or marketing strategy I’m finding more and more that a big issue that underlines the real issue, is firmly rooted in self-belief and confidence.
What is happening that business owners who I see as exceptional in their field do not appreciate how brilliant they are?
What makes a successful capable business owner question themselves and whether success is achievable?
Often you can shift a thought pattern just by proving to the client that they are in fact brilliant. By showcasing the facts that prove that they have achieved great things in the past and thus have the skills to achieve it again. However sometimes people so deep routed in a negative belief will be able to prove that in actual fact the self belief that says they are not good enough or its not achievable is actually correct.
And yet these are astute business owners who have faced adversity, flown in the opposition of negativity and created businesses that work.
So what enables the brain to say to you again and again “You are a fake and you can’t do this”?
Richard Branson impresses me endlessly with his quotes about the human ability to achieve and overcome negative beliefs to get results however these are he’s words not yours. You need to know in your heart why you. Why you truly rock? What stands you out from the crowd?
We all have a wobble. After all our brains are just muscles and the fact is if you don’t use it, you lose it. It will revert to negativity and drag you down. So what do you tell yourself?
Does it power up your business goals for 2015? Or cause you to think “I can’t do this?”
I will never forget years ago when the Home Office phoned and invited me to a presentation by the Home Secretary about mentoring business women. I said to the lady from the Home Office “You know I’m just little Mandie Holgate from Mersea Island right? I’m no one special.” I can’t remember her reply but they didn’t retract their offer, I was invited again and that was the last time I was prepared to not believe that I was worthy of the success I wanted or that I was “Good enough”.
We all have to kick our own butts to maintain that internal belief that we are indeed brilliant, we do deserve it and we are capable of it.
We all know with the right support, the right beliefs that no matter what obstacles get in the way, we find a way to get the results we want. So don’t let a self belief be something that stands in the way of your success.
Challenge the negativity and watch out world.
One business women I’ve been working with recently couldn’t believe that all these fantastic opportunities were coming her way “Just because of a new believe” however as I pointed out the old belief had helped her get so far and then it had caused her to see an obstacle that was insurmountable, to the point that it was a accepted rule that this was the limit of her business. Why would the new belief not work to get you want you want? But then I can appreciate how miraculous it can feel. That you change a belief about yourself and suddenly your selling more at a higher price and getting the success you want. Our natural way of analysing things tells us that it has to be hard, it has to be difficult, why would we naturally believe a new thought pattern, a new neurological automatic pathway could enable success. If it was that easy we would all do it right?
I hope this post is helpful to you. I know it will be to my clients that will read this, and thus its likely to be useful to others too.
Read more articles like this on my website or get in touch and I will happily write something just for you.