I have a confession to make.
I almost didn't share this with you, but I don't think I'm the only one who struggles with this. So please tell me you know what I'm talking about.
This past week, I was challenged to approach five 'scary' women in my world to let them know about some of the opportunities I have for them at the new kathyburrus.com.
Now, by 'scary', I don't mean they are dark or ominous; or that they make me afraid. Well, ok, maybe they have made me a little afraid. But it is not because they tried to frighten me.
Rather it is because they are strong, confident women who are world changers. They are women I admire a great deal. They come from many walks of life. They serve the world in many different ways.
But there is something about them that intimidates me. That makes them 'scary'!
So... I took my issue to my 6 coaches- yes, six. It just so happened that evening, the master class I teach at World Coach Institute was scheduled to use their coaching skills to coach me on the topic of my choice. Each coach had one opportunity to ask me a question, reflect on something they hear me say, or make a direct communication about the truth of my topic.
I told them I wanted them to help me create a script, or make a plan on how to talk to my 'scary' women.
Immediately the class picked up on my fear.
We have often talked in class about how important it is to notice words that express fear, anger or shame. A client can not move forward if the underlying emotion is holding them back. Why did i choose the word "scary"? I've been pondering the conversation.
The first question: How could you see these women as being the same as you?
My answer: (quite causually) I just need to get to know them. Often when I feel intimidated by someone, just getting to know the person better helps me overcome my insecurities.
Next question: What do you need to do to not feel intimidated?
Me: Again- just take the next step to get to know them. Usually we find something in common or I see the 'real' woman express her own insecurities. That changes everything.
Question 3: What do they have that you don't?
Me: hmm? Ultimately I guess confidence. They appear to have have oodles of confidence. They do the things that are feel hard for me. They don't seem afraid to do it. I've worked with a lot of women. I know I haven't met a woman yet that doesn't feel afraid at some point.
Direct communication from the next: It sounds like you are separating yourself from them.
Me: Hmm? Is that what I'm doing? Creating the very thing that separates me from the 'scary' ones? I want to be one of them. I want to make a scary difference in my world and feel courageous doing it.
But I don't feel courageous. I feel scared. There are lots of times I do the next thing even if I am scared.
Hmm? Im pretty sure that "scary women" do that.
Next questions: If your worldview is every woman should know she is remarkable... aren't you remarkable too?
Me: Hmmm? I had shared with them my world view statement in an earlier class. It had actually come up several times. Now they were holding me accountable to the very philosophy that is the foundation of what I do. I had just written on the WHAT I DO pages for the website....
OK- I think they got me!
Last question: What are your action steps?
Me: I'm going to call the 5 remarkable women! The scary has gone away, the admiration has shown these women to be truly worth noticing (the very definition of remarkable). They are women I care about, I want to partner with, I can rub shoulders with.
After the exercise, the class continued to speak into this.
"I think we all picked up right away that you are remarkable and are baffled that you are struggling with this."
"You lost your daughter and are coming to be yourself again after all that- that's remarkable!"
Then one more question: What makes you feel you aren't remarkable enough?
Yes, why is that I wonder?
How would you answer that?
For such a lond time I have felt broken since my daughter's death. In the past few months, I began to realize I wasn't broken. I've been to a broken place - but I wouldn't be where I am today if I were broken. Even though I have spoken that truth to myself, I'm still owning how that is showing up.
- Am I still 'making excuses' instead of embracing the next opportunity I have to rub shoulders with truly remarkable women?
- Am I afraid that they will think me not remarkable enough to be in their space?
- Am I afraid I am not as remarkable as I think I am- as I want to be? Hmm?
So...do you have 'scary' women in your life? I encourage you to write down their names.
How would you answer the questions my coaches asked me? or the ones I ask at the end?
We are all women- possibly you are 'scary' to someone. What if we recognize each other as the remarkable beings that we are? What if we quit comparing ourselves to one another and start embracing our own remarkable self?
Then we can quit competing.
We can stop being intimidated by each other.
Hmmm? My scary" women are not so scary anymore. I'm actually looking forward to my conversations.
What are you going to do with yours? I challenge you to connect with one this week.
Let me know how it goes.