Showing Up Confident
The invitation came unexpectedly. I hadn't planned on this particular opportunity. But before I knew it, I was committing to speak at a workshop for those looking for a job. And I asked myself, what did I know about looking for a job? I hadn't searched for a job in over 10 years!
It started innocently enough. A friend had connected me with another coach. She had committed to speaking at this particular workshop but had a change of plans and asked if I would speak at the workshop instead. I was looking for new opportunities to speak. It seemed like a win win.
Since I was replacing her, I thought maybe I should be like her. She's a dynamic motivational speaker. And fear creeped in. How was I going to show up and deliver what she delivered on? How was I going to be like her, well, when I'm not like her?
After a brief moment of panic, I settled in. And then I heard a whisper, "Don't try to be her. Just be yourself." Bring what you do and just be who you are. Be the coach who encourages people whether they are looking for a job, discovering their purpose, and aligning their faith and life to step out in courage and show up in confidence.
The reality is that the one thing I can be is myself. They others are already taken. The others are harder to do because I'm not them.
So I committed. And decided. And chose to show up as myself. The title of my talk... The Fearless Interview. We'll do some group coaching tools. We'll talk about courage and confidence. And hopefully, help those who are anxious to find peace and courage in the place they are in.
To choose my working title, I did a little research. Did you know that 92% of adults have anxiety over an interview? And I'm betting, just as many of us have anxiety over something. Maybe it's our job performance. Maybe it's how our kids our turning out. We could have anxiety over meeting new people or the impressions we're making. Or that we're plain not good enough.
I don't know where you're at, but I think all of us can relate to being anxious and nervous about something. Have you ever thought about how you can show up with confidence? Have you ever wondered what confidence and courage looks like for us?
The reality is that you and I can choose to show up confident. We can choose courage over fear and anxiety. We can live in confidence no matter what we are anxious about.
Choose How You Show Up
The biggest thing I've learned from my coach training and being a coach is the idea that you and I get to choose. For years, I let my circumstances and my feelings dictate. I would just show up in the world nervous and fearful.
What I've learned and continue to learn in all my experiences is that we get to choose how we show up in the world. We can choose our attitudes. We can choose not to show up in anxiety. We can choose to embrace being present over being perfect. We can choose to pay attention to what has meaning. We can choose to focus on what we have to give instead of how others are reacting to us.
The best way for you and I to show up confident despite our own anxiety is to choose to show up with courage and confidence.
Being yourself is the only person you can be. God designed you to be just who you are. Your strengths. Your weaknesses. Your way of looking at the world. ON PURPOSE. God doesn't need you or I showing up trying to be like someone else. He needs us to show up with who we are.
How do you do this? You start by embracing your strengths. You start by embracing your personality. You start by acknowledging that you have unique ways to contribute to our world. What you know can help other people. And so, instead of hiding those things you bring them out into the open. You own your skills and talents. You own your gifts.
It takes courage to love who God has made you. It takes courage to take your skills and gifts and talents and use them to help others and contribute to God's kingdom. It takes courage to choose different instead of being like the next person.
When you love how God has knitted you together, you show up with confidence knowing that not every opportunity is a perfect fit. You show up with confidence because sometimes you get to say no to say yes to what's best. You show up with confidence because you're ready to partner with God to use your talents and gifts in the world around you.
Make Friends With Fear
It's not the first time I've said this. Because I write a lot about fear and courage, this idea keeps coming up in our conversations. When we follow our calling or when we attempt something new, fear will be our companion.
The problem with fear is that we think our job is to eliminate it. If we could just conquer our fear, then we would be confident. The problem is that fear walks with us on each new endeavor. Fear walks with us in our everyday lives when we're trying to be better or we're attempting to be good at our jobs or parent our kiddos.
What would happen to you and I if we just acknowledged that fear is part of the package? What if you and I acknowledged that courage is not the absence of fear but the ability to proceed in spite of our fear? What if we made friends with our fear and used it to our advantage?
Fear can paralyze us and motivate us. Fear can be what defines us or fear can be the catalyst we need to move forward and succeed. Facing our fears helps us develop the confidence we're so desperately looking for. When we face our fears, we discover a courage to do what we've never done to become who we've never been.
I have a true confession for you. I wish I could tell you this stuff comes naturally. With all this talk about courage and facing down my fears, I'd like to be able to say I've figured it our. And yet, I write about what I live.
As you can see from the beginning of this post, I still sometimes wonder if being me is good enough. I still come across my fears and see them as my enemy, instead of my friend. I still let fear and anxiety keep me from living my best life. But together, we can remind each other that showing up with confidence means embracing who we are, choosing how we show up, and feeling the fear and doing it anyway.
I'd love to hear about your anxious moments and how God is using them to build your confidence. Leave your comment here or on social media.