Do You Ever Feel Inadequate?

by | Oct 2, 2012 | Marketing and Sales Blog Posts, Success Mindset

Whether you are a small business owner generating a modest half a million dollars a year or the President of a $50 Million company or the CEO of a $500 Million company you probably at one time or another throughout the year have suffered from feeling inadequate.

No matter what level of success you have already accomplished your eye is always aimed at the next level of success you are striving to conquer. As Marshall Goldsmith’s popular book has so well articulated — What Got Your Here, Won’t Get You There.

Well, if your thoughts stopped right there the natural for anyone is to be left with stabbing pangs of inadequacy. Inadequacy is when you are not confident enough that you know how to navigate through a new strategy or maybe it’s the same stubborn problems you can’t seem to stop from plaguing you.

These awarenesses turn into reminders. Then reminders turn into recordings of all the times you have tried in the past to solve your giant business challenge only to fail and feel like you have simply made things worse.

It’s these broken records you can’t stop listening to as you toss and turn through sleepless nights. You want to solve your problems and escape the stress, but you seem to stay stuck in this same holding pattern. So, what do you do?

Whatever spectrum of inadequacy you fall here are 5 tips to help you get your confidence back, so you can lead your business into finishing the year strong.

Tip #1. Define your fear. Emotions like inadequacy, worry, anxiety and stress are all by-products and symptoms of fear. You can’t win over fear if it remains invisible. But, you can make the invisible, clearly visible when you define what you’re afraid might happen and why.

While the specific challenges I help my clients with does vary, these scenarios often boil down to one same core fear. It’s about being afraid that the effort you put in won’t work — which is another version of saying, “I’m afraid it will fail” or “I’m afraid I will fail again”.

Do this first action step for yourself in your current challenge and see what it is you define on paper that you’re afraid might happen. (and notice I said “might” and not “will”)

Tip #2. Choose to stop believing your fears. It’s a natural progression if you listen to the same thing over and over again you begin to believe it. But, the problem is when you hold a negative and limiting belief it impacts your performance and results in a negative way.

We see it in professional sports all the time how much your mindset matters in how you well you play the game. I have 3 aspiring professional soccer players of my own. Several weeks ago my middle son, who is the new kid on his U12 travel soccer team, was not playing his usual level of ability with his division 1 team. Having watched him play hundreds of games, my husband knew precisely what our son’s mental block was that day.

He told him, “you don’t believe you belong here.” “You seem to think everyone else belongs here, but you don’t. Well, you’re wrong because you do belong here or they wouldn’t have recruited you on the team.”

His dad went on to drill the fact that our son has all the talent and skill he needs. He just needs to focus on believing that he belongs on the team with the other division 1 players.

And, to our expectation, what do you know? Our son does a complete 180 and transforms his level of performance on the field with incredible confidence, grace and finesse.

So, what about you?

What is the limiting belief that’s holding you back?

And, will you choose to stop believing it?

Tip #3. Ask yourself a better question. Instead of dwelling on the negative lies you believe about yourself, start asking yourself a better question. Your mind responds amazingly to your inner dialogue. If you keep focusing on your (perceived) flaws, then feeling discouraged and inadequate is naturally what occurs. But, if you ask yourself a better question, great solutions and innovative ideas are also what occurs. Perhaps the question could be:

– What could I need to do differently to get better results in ________?
– Who else can help me achieve this goal?
– What is the change I want to see?
– What am I willing to invest to get this right?

Tip #4. Solicit feedback from a trusted advisor. Once you have drafted a new, better plan to achieve that elusive goal one of the best things you can do to boost your confidence that your plan will work is to seek out feedback from trusted experts. Not only can they endorse the soundness of your new plan, but they can also offer short cuts and best practice tips that you alone would not have thought of to help you make that plan even better.

As a business growth expert I am frequently asked to review strategic plans, marketing plans, business plans as well as expansion plans. I’m also asked to help create the plan for many entrepreneurs who would like to accelerate their progress. So, if you’re ready for feedback and support I invite you to contact me at my info below.

Tip #5. Practice positive expectation. You have to deliberately and willfully fight the current of falling back into your old patterns. You have to stop thinking that all your attempts in the past have failed so this will fail too type of thinking and go the opposite direction in your thinking.

Positive expectancy is expecting positive results. You expect the chair in your office to hold you up and it does. You expect your employees to follow protocol and they do. The more you expect your prospects to say yes, the more they do. So, once you have a plan and you’re ready to execute on that plan, you must, must, must practice positive expectancy that your new actions will produce improved results.

In closing, I also want to encourage you to embrace those feelings of inadequacy.

Feeling inadequate is a good thing because it drives us to a place of humility. A leader can rarely lead from a spirit of arrogance. It’s humility that keeps pushing us to keep learning, to keep growing and to keep stretching ourselves to step out of our comfort zone.

If anything I’ve shared as resonated with you please share your comments and do share this article.

Your mindset matters.

Here’s to your success!



Go ahead! As long as you give full author attribution as follows:

Business Growth Expert Yoon Cannon has helped thousands of CEOs, entrepreneurs & small business owners achieve dramatic results in sales, productivity and profits. Over the past 20 years, Yoon has started 4 other companies and sold 3 of them. She is the author of numerous articles published in major print media and magazines. She is also a popular keynote speaker. Get Yoon’s free video “How to Find Your WOW Factor” at Call Yoon direct at (215) 292-4947.
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