I’ve got this dichotomy inside of me:
On the one hand, I know deep in my heart, body, soul, and mind, that my work is really good. That the work is super-valuable and transformational. I know I’ve earned my place as one of the best coaches in the industry. And I know that no one comes close to me when it comes to teaching master level coaching and facilitation skills to individuals who like to dive deep and who desire to get into the depths with their clients.
On the other hand…I sometimes wonder if I suck. If the work just isn’t good enough. If I’m a fraud.
And, when I give the wrong kind of attention & energy to this second impule, it feels like torture. It hurts deeply. It makes me anxious. And question everything.
The knowing that my work is amazing is a knowing that lives way down deep inside of me. I own it. It can’t be taken away from me.
I am truly confident….yet the feeling of the latter, the “I suck” feeling, seems to often be ready and waiting right there on the surface to make sure I don’t forget about it.
This dichotomy is sometimes painful, sometimes annoying, and sometimes really hilarious.
How can one person feel both of these seemingly opposite things, one after another?!?
But in fact, YES, it is possible to possess both of these things inside of you.
And in fact, most of my most successful and brilliant and transformative clients feel much the same way.
And what I’ve come to learn over many years of working with myself and clients on this is that this experience is a Rite of Passage of being an incredible practitioner, and… it doesn’t have to be a bad thing at all: if you use it and navigate it and leverage it the right way it can actually be a healthy, valuable, worthy dynamic.
Here’s what I mean: For those of us that have it, the “I’m not good enough voice” is a part of us. We can work to lessen it and move it into the background, but it’s actually very hard to eradicate it completely. For better or worse, it’s part of who we are; it’s a part of the belief system of our younger self.
So instead of hating on it or being a victim of it…as we work to lessen it, it’s also actually our job to use it for good.
To hear it not as a dire and desperate voice of criticism or truth….but to know that when it comes up, it can be used as a indication that it’s time to:
- love on ourselves just a little more than we have been
- connect in more deeply with the part of ourselves that recognizes our gifts and brilliance
- be inspired to our next level of excellence
- assess where we’ve been attempting to be amazing at too many things or fallen into myth of perfection or taken over-responsibility for others…and then get back in our own lane (& also allow ourselves to suck at the things we don’t need to be good at…because we’ve all got those!)
For me, one of the most hilarious parts of my “I suck” voice is that I’ve literally built my business on supporting practitioners to become better and more effective and more masterful at what they do! I claim to be THE expert in training you how to be incredible. And how to know you don’t suck.
Sounds ironic at first, right? (And maybe a little torturous for me!)
And yet I stand by my promise 110%. In full integrity.
I can do this, even with my “I suck” voice coming up now and again.
In fact, I can do this BECAUSE my “I suck” voice comes up now and again.
It’s the ultimate test for me around how I’m going to “hear” that voice, how I’m going to let it impact me, and how I’m going to use it.
I share all of this so that, if you happen to have this dichotomy dynamic that I do (or your clients do!), you can find some gold in it too.