We look back at the year and wonder where it went. A part of us is so glad it’s over. Clean slate. So eager to start again. Part of us is sad to see it go. Another year. Gone. Did we reach our big goals? Did we make ourselves proud? Did we survive unscathed?
I won’t lie. It’s been a rough year and I’m sure I’m not alone. But in true us-fashion, we have persevered. Thrived even. A bit frayed, tear-stained, and in need of a shower. But we made it.
This time of year always makes me think of all the start-ups just beginning to work on their dream. I suppose it’s because I started, not that long ago, in the last quarter of the year. I get a bit nostalgic remembering an old computer, a full-time day job, and a really crazy dream. At least that’s what it felt like at the time. I had NEVER heard of a Virtual Assistant. I just knew that I was burnt out and unfulfilled with my career and I was really good at helping people.
One of the things that really stuck with me was a piece of well-meant advice that kept coming up. “Just fake it till you make it.” Maybe it’s the INTJ in me, but faking something is just not in my wheelhouse. Study it. Analyze it. Organize it even. But I was not comfortable putting myself forward as a fake. I was already suffering from imposter syndrome (after all I’d never heard of a VA or had my own business). How would I ever get over that if I was telling myself I was a fake!If you were able to believe in Santa Claus for like 8 years, you can believe in yourself for like 5 minutes. #Unknown Click To Tweet
Now, I’ll agree there is some logic behind the concept. But being someone who believes that what we tell ourselves matters, I decided I would “be it till I believed it.” Every day I would visualize myself doing this, as a badass boss. I knew in my heart that I was more than capable, I’d proven it in plenty of other aspects of my life and career. I just needed to BE IT till I BELIEVED it.
It became my unofficial motto. I didn’t even realize at the time how powerful it was to me. I had it creatively scripted on my chalkboard for years to read every day. A tiny mantra with BIG power.
This, of course, didn’t mean I was suddenly skilled in all things VA. But what it did do was build my confidence. One of the hardest and most important skills we can learn (and pass along). I would prep for my client calls by building myself up, repeating my little mantra and reminding myself of all the things I was great at. If the client needed something I didn’t know, I was honest. I did not fake it. But, with confidence, I told them I had no issues with learning it – and they believed me. That’s all it took.
So I pass this on to you, and I hope that it will help. Whether you are just starting out or you have been at this for a while. We all start at the beginning, that doesn’t make you a fake.
That makes you an inspiration. ♥ —Carolyn