“You’re an idiot. You’re not good enough.”
I had suffered from this self-talk for years.
I am not a details guy by nature. I prefer to see the big picture and work my way through the wilderness, so to speak, to arrive at the desired destination.
Near the end of my government career, I was the project manager on a small project working with a team of folks from around the organization.
I was working in a group of peers who were ALL detailed-oriented.
They pointed out the errors in my documents and created detailed project schedules (compared to my own higher-level schedule). The spoke meticulously about their project, whereas I had trouble communicating what was in my head.
The people on the team were not doing anything vicious, or mean-spirited – they were just being themselves.
I was putting the pressure on myself.
…and intense pressure was building, I fell like I was going into meltdown.
I was totally unsure of myself and my abilities, questioning my worth – it was soul-crushing.
At the time, I was training to get my life coach certification in the evenings.
The premise behind life coaching is that the coach does not have the answers to their clients’ problems, their job is to bring the answers out of their client by asking powerful questions.
I had a moment of clarity one night when I realized that I did not have to have all the answers or solve all the problems at work.
I could learn from others and their abilities, contribute my own skills, and deliver a quality solution together – without feeling inadequate.
Imagine the feeling of going from feeling insecure, frustrated, and under pressure to feeling confident, free, and light over a 12-hour period?
My co-workers could visibly see the difference that my new philosophy had on me the next day. They literally saw it my body language, decisions, and actions.
You know, COVID protocols may provide a good example – maybe it’s time to put a mask on just to filter the words coming out of your mouth.
If you are struggling with feelings of inadequacy due to internal or external criticism, join me and group of other parents who struggle at work here: https://www.facebook.com/perfectmanblogger and turn those feelings around!