One of the strongest bits of advice I ever received from a boss and leader I respected, I actually ignored. I was at a cross-roads making a decision about my future career, which could’ve had several outcomes.
Instead of staying on a familiar, well-trodden corporate career path, I claimed my wisdom and resigned. Although I was good as a human resources manager, the calling of my heart to step into another direction was undeniable. And in that moment my self-belief was ignited. Now over 12 years ago, in hindsight that day was one of the most empowering and pivotal days of my life and it started me on my real path.
Life presents people, messages and opportunities that urge and challenge us to dig-deep within ourselves to bring out our best. Whilst we might not realise it, we are continually being cajoled into discovering and rediscovering: what we truly want; who we really are; and how we’d like to live and be. We all have chance encounters with people that leave an impact on us. We read articles with a message that lingers in our mind. We have lessons and patterns and gut-feels that repeat over and over, telling us what we need. We notice our own reactions to our work. And they quietly, yet persistently, add up to reveal a greater truth within us that we’ve yet to awaken. Self-belief works like this. We have to learn to pay close attention to what life is showing us, day by day, and to trust the truth of what we are realising about ourselves – even if it is uncomfortable.
For me back then, I was being given plenty of signs that it was time to move-on. Kindled by a regular yoga practice, I was discovering a yearning to work and engage with people in ways that felt more genuine, caring and inspiring than my HR role. Whilst I don’t think I’ll ever be free from self-doubt, the trick is that I’ve learned how to embrace my vision and ideas first and foremost, and consider what others think, second. I still procrastinate and worry that others will judge me. I still worry that I might make the wrong decision. And I still don’t get things right the first time. But I believe in myself and I am a work-in-progress. To rekindle your self-belief, practice: Gently nudging yourself fowards, despite your discomfort and fear.
Being ok with not knowing how things will work out – you are stronger than you think. Learning to be okay with self-doubt. Sticking to a helpful habit (like yoga or meditation) and not listening to the negative self-talk you have about it. Giving yourself personal time and space to have fun, dream, vision and create. “I am not what has happened to me. I am what I choose to become.” ~ Carl Jung When we believe in ourselves, we know our worth. Life gets easier – more joyful and more alive. We know that fulfilment comes from whatever we choose to put our heart into. Self-belief leads us to ultimately discovering our true nature – the Self that is already whole, beautiful, loving and joyful – just as we have always been.
Natalie Snooke is the founder of Momentum Coaching and Yoga, established in 2007. A heart-centred leader, she specialises in guiding men and women to develop focus, presence, creativity and compassion in their personal and professional lives, through self-awareness.