Featured Are you really lacking in self-confidence, or is it a case of …

I don’t know whether you recollect those scenes in the Superman films where the baddie of the film would be able to waive a piece of Kryptonite near to Superman and all of his super-powers would weaken.

Kryptonite had an overpowering effect on the superhero and just being in its presence would render Superman a bundle of wibbly-wabbly jelly.

It’s interesting to compare how there’s a similar effect in play when people around us waive words around, like a bar of Kryptonite, and take away our powers too.

Take for example the following situation:


It’s Friday afternoon in the office where you work and you’ve arranged with some of the girls you work with to pop out for a drink after work, something that you all arranged a couple of weeks earlier and you’re all looking forward to this event as you’ve got a lot to catch up on – you’ve all been planning your evening together on Facebook and it’s going to be fun.

All seems good, clock ticking down to the final whistle, then your boss comes out of their office, or sends you a message, to say that in effect, ‘something’s cropped up / there’s an emergency, etc’, and therefore you’ll have to work late this Friday until the matter’s resolved.

End of.

Not up for discussion.

So … what do you do?

If you’re like some of my clients you’ll fume silently inside your brain, think of what you’d want to say to your boss, but capitulate and agree to work late (as you’ve always done).

And then – the kicker – you tell yourself you’re lacking in self confidence, since ‘obviously’ someone else would have somehow worked out a way to resolve this and still made it to be with their friends that night.

Freeze that frame

WOAH! Let’s wind the scene back a bit!

Perhaps there’s a few other ways to look at this scenario, ones which those words, acting like Kryptonite, have meant you’ve been unable to see.

Do you remember when you were learning to drive, how your instructor would say that as you become more experienced as a driver you’ll need to learn to anticipate what the other road users might do, so you can prepare for it and react accordingly?

Come off the accelerator and cover the brake for example, to give more time to react.

So let’s take a look at your boss. Is this the first time they’d dropped the ‘gotta work late’ grenade on your lap? Are they someone who’s prone to having their emergency become someone else’s too?

If that’s the case, then I’m curious; let’s imagine that you now know this could happen again, say next Friday too, what could you do in advance to position yourself as not being available after your working day ends, when they drop the ‘gotta work late’ grenade on you lap on that day?

Options, options …

When I’ve discussed this with clients they’ve often surprised themselves by coming up with a list of ten or more ways to deal with this. Options such as

* Just saying I can’t do it.
* Saying I’ll stay for 30 minutes
* Saying I’ll come in late to make up for the overtime

and so on.

And when you begin to move out from worker / boss to one of equal footing, to be able to say something akin to “If I do this for you, I just need to know that you’ll be able to help me too when I ask.”

Yes, the reality is that some work positions do require us to work extra time as and when required, however, it can sometimes be the case that the person who’s expressing that ‘urgent need’ has their own personality issues and therefore it’s up to us to defend ourselves from their verbal Kryptonite.

So where does this leave you on the Friday night girl’s night out that you seem to have to miss?

Well, first off, before we ‘blame’ your lack of self-confidence, had you expected this?

If not, let’s just be honest and say that you’ve been ‘spooked’ by it, rather like a rabbit in the headlights of the oncoming car.  But now you can plan for it, so when you get the message you can decide how to act.

The blame game

There are some other issues this scenario brings up, ones I’ll touch upon in a subsequent post, but for now just recognise that we often blame how we feel on our lack of self-confidence when perhaps we had simply not expected something to happen in the way it did.

“OK. So now you’ve calling me naive or stupid, rather than lacking in self-confidence? Is that what you’re saying?”

Perhaps I am, but not in the way your emotional response may be suggesting. All I’m saying is, by not thinking through what might happen on the forthcoming Friday you’ll once again put yourself in a position where you have little time to react to your boss’s emotional manipulation. In that context, yes, you are being naive.

And that could be well worth looking into if we were discussing this in an appointment, or perhaps it would be something for you to explore prior to our next meeting.

So don’t beat yourself up over low self-confidence, that might not be the issue – ever.

VIP Transformation Days

If you’re a busy professional, perhaps someone who struggles to fit everything they want into their lives, but still wanting more, then you’re probably not going have time for the softly, softly approach and would prefer to just get everything sorted out and moving forwards P.D.Q.

To accommodate clients just like you I have developed an intensive transformational day where we can identify and release you from the triggers, patterns, and habits that are holding you back from achieving more in your life.

Flexible structure

The VIP package is based around either one six-hour intensive single day appointment, or two three-hour half-days, depending upon your personal circumstances and diary commitments.  By the end of this you will have cleared out a selection of significant blockages and limiting patterns in very many areas of your life.

As an additional output from this procedure we will also prepare a “next step” plan in which you’ll be able to identify the specific changes or enhancements to your life or business that you have identified as requiring change.

The programme also includes a one hour (or two thirty minute) follow up Skype or telephone sessions with me to be scheduled approximately 30 days after your VIP day(s).

Concentrated results

As you will no doubt appreciate, not everyone is ready to step up to the challenge committing of massive change at this level and therefore I will only accept clients for this procedure if I feel they will gain the fullest benefit.

Scheduling constraints mean I can only allocate time for a few VIP transformation days per month, so if you feel you’re at the place in your life where you could benefit from this contact me and we can arrange a telephone call together so we can explore what you want to deal with during the VIP transformation day.

By the end of that call we’ll both know whether the VIP transformation day is right for you, or not, and if it is we can arrange the next steps.  VIP transformational days can be held, subject to agreement, anywhere where we can arrange to meet.  Don’t let distance or location hold you back from a life-changing experience.

To explore this further you can contact me by completing this form.

It’s OK to be assertive – honest

Assertiveness means being able to stand up for your rights without trampling over others. Assertiveness also means being able to stop someone else pushing you around and trampling over you.

It is a skill we all should be able to learn as children, partly by example from our adult care-givers and also by trial and error in school and such places.

However, if we grow up in a family or home where our key adults were not able to be assertive, perhaps tending towards being aggressive or submissive, then we may not learn how to assert our own rights to be ourselves.

Parallel to this, if our school-time is spent in classrooms which are populated by aggressive or bullying children or adults, this will further reduce our chances of learning how to be assertive.

Unfortunately, however, past experiences can build up a pattern of letting others take advantage of us.

These patterns once learnt become automatic and therefore we can fall into the trap of not noticing when we let others take advantage of us or not being aware of when we are taking advantage of others.

Even when our lack of assertiveness results in poor quality or failed relationships we can still continue along, oblivious to how we are acting.

The good news is that patterns can be broken, changed, so that they no longer make you act in the old way that you used to behave.

Coaching provides a medium to allow us to release you from old patterns, so that you can become assertive again and take control of your future.

Once you begin to understand how and where you slip between assertiveness, aggressiveness and submissiveness then you can take back control of your emotions and live your life free from the manipulation and undue influence of others.