Hoping that a change of location would help me feel more creative, I pulled my dry shampooed hair (BossBabes who work from home, I know you feel me on this!) under a hat, threw my laptop in its case and headed to the local coffee shop.
With a frothy cappuccino and muffin in front of me, I opened the laptop to get back to work on my book proposal for the absolute dream publishing house I’d had my heart set on for years.
Two words popped up on the screen.
The one final question I had left to answer.
I stared at those two words.
“Why you, Helena?” swirled round and round in my head.
I could feel the coffee shop starting to close in on me as the Little Miss Critical voice in my head geared herself up for a full-on blowout.
You see, for days, I’d been feeling the seeds of entrepreneurial doubt beginning to plant themselves in my head. I’d pushed them away, tried to ignore their presence and buried myself in being as productive as I possibly could.
But that one little question was enough to pierce my defense barrier and elevate my inner Little Miss Critical to a raging Mean Girl. I no longer had any idea “Why Me.” I had been so focused on producing content and getting s*** done that I’d actually lost connection with my purpose and my “why.” Tears of despair started to roll down my cheeks and I realized that I needed to truly take a breath and step back.
And I know that every single one of us hits this place at some point on our entrepreneurial journey.
That place where you doubt yourself, don’t know why you’re working so hard and yet struggle some months to pay the bills and begin to wonder if you should just say f*** it and go get a “real” job.
It’s vulnerable. It feels dark and raw and rocky and it’s frickin scary.
But, in sharing our experiences honestly with our fellow entrepreneurs we can support each other in knowing that we’re not alone, and that occasional doubts and fears are a normal part of the BossBabe journey. We don’t have to let the inevitable bumps in the road become an excuse to give up on our dreams or lose sight of our “why”.
In just a couple of days, I was able to shift the negative rain cloud that was looming over me and I’m going to share with you exactly how I did that, in the hope that you never let your own inner doubts and fears stop you from believing in yourself and going after your dreams.
Take a step back
Our businesses feel like our babies. Ever since we metaphorically gave birth to them, we’ve spent every waking hour (and sometimes non-waking!) nurturing them, building them and giving them all our love and attention. But if we don’t take a step back every so often and put things into perspective, we can lose sight of why we even began on this path in the first place.
As BossBabes who want to make a difference in this world, it’s so important to remain connected to our “why” and our mission. And, as difficult as it is, that means sometimes stepping away from the laptop and switching off the phone. Get out into nature, bring a notepad and pen and allow real inspiration to come. If you need to take a good few days away, then go for it! I promise that when you step back in front of that laptop, you’ll do so with a renewed passion and purpose.
Talk to Your Fellow BossBabes
The entrepreneurial journey can be a very lonely one. And many of us play the online comparison game. We look at other BossBabes’ entrepreneurial highlight reels and compare them to our “behind the scenes”. But at the end of the day, no matter where we are on our journey, each of us will face challenges, adversity and meltdown moments at some point. So, when these occur, give yourself full permission to own your vulnerability because not only will you realize you’re not the only one, you’ll also give permission to other BossBabes to share their truth and feel heard and understood. And we could all do with more of that in this world!
Flip The Thoughts
When the spiral of negative thoughts begins, it’s so easy to lose sight of all the positive things we’ve got going on and how far we’ve come. As hard as it may feel, it is imperative in these moments that we practice some Jedi mindset moves. Yea, it feels sh***y right now, but this feeling will pass. It always does. The mantra that I say to myself when I’m feeling low is “This too shall pass” and it has never let me down yet! Then I focus on the things that are actually going “right” in my life.
So, what are the things you can be proud of? Where is there love and connection in your life? Are you alive and healthy? We can get so focused on the “big picture goals” that we actually lose sight of the miraculous things that already surround us. Even if it’s as simple as how delicious our morning coffee tastes, or the fact that the sun is streaming into our home office or that we can step outside and feel the air on our skin.
Don’t beat yourself up for not being exactly where you want to be yet. I remind myself that I’m on an incredible journey and every stop on the road is an opportunity for me to learn or understand something about myself or about life that will stand me in good stead in the future. And that’s something more precious in the long-term than overnight success!
Talk To Your Fear
Fear is an inevitable part of being a human. Fear keeps us alive! But as entrepreneurs who are venturing out into the unknown, our own Little Miss Fear can massively hold us back because she doesn’t know how to protect us “out there”. Little Miss Fear craves certainty and will do everything she can to keep us playing small. Because when we play small, she knows how to handle that. She’ll stall your car at every minor bump in the road and even go into reverse if you let her.
So, remember that, although Little Miss Fear may be a part of you, she is not you. And it is your duty, as CEO of your own life, to tell her that this is your car and she is not allowed to drive it. Listen to what she has to say and then reassure her that you can handle this one step at a time, so she can get in the back seat and take a nap.
Tap The Negativity Out
Tapping (also known as EFT) has been one of the most incredible tools for me when it comes to shifting my mindset and releasing any limiting beliefs. It involves tapping on specific acupressure points on the body while concentrating on accepting and releasing a specific negative emotion. In just a few minutes, you can discover and release limiting thoughts and beliefs that may be blocking your entrepreneurial success. I use this technique with my clients for a range of issues from emotional eating and weight loss, to attracting loving relationships and overcoming fears in any area of their life.
So girl, the next time that entrepreneurial meltdown hits, just know that you’re not alone and no, you’re not crazy. Take a deep breath and apply these tools and before you know it, you’ll be rocking your BossBabe crown.
Helena Grace Donald is an Empowerment Coach for Women, an expert Tapping Practitioner and a Body Positivity Image Advocate. Her book “Learning to Love the Girl in the Mirror” has been featured on CBS, NBC, BBC, Good Day Washington, The Irish Times and many more! Helena is on a mission to inspire over a million women to fully love, accept and respect the skin they're in by 2020. Helena absolutely loves using Tapping (EFT technique) with her clients to clear out their limiting beliefs, transform their money mindset and totally raise their levels of self-worth and self-love. When she's not busy transforming the self-esteem of women around the world, you can find her walking along the beach at home in LA, hiking with her partner or cooking up a storm in the kitchen!