When You Hit a Confidence Block–Crush It

I’ve been fighting a block again the last 24 hours.  Not writer’s block.  Confidence block.

Random events in my personal life disturbed the delicate balance of being confident in my business again (it’s always been a fine line for me, thank you childhood!).  I’m an accidental entrepreneur.  They tell me it gets easier.  I think it’s a matter of me finding the strength to be stronger.

So I did what I usually do to get through it.  I cuddled my kids and my cats.  I dyed my hair fuchsia.  I listened to Pink.

Just push through,” they say, but I needed to crush it.

And they’re right.  I sat at my computer last night, knowing that I needed to blog and get some work done, and thinking about something I’d read a few weeks back about just getting the work done.  I’d link you to it but I can’t find or remember where it was.  Book?  Blog post?  Tweet?  I don’t know.

The point of it was that sometimes you don’t wait for inspiration or creativity or the right mood or confidence or any of that other stuff we always want to be just perfect.  Sometimes you just push through and get the work done.

I willed myself to write.  And I wrote, but it was crap.  So I tossed it (well, as much as deleting a few digital bytes of data is tossing it).  Then I willed myself to work and that didn’t go so well either.

Do you ever feel that way?  You’re a strong person.  You’ve got drive.  You’re willing to do the work.  You’re determined to take the big leaps (or steady steps) forward.  But sometimes an unexpected wave crashes over, takes you out for a moment, and it’s tough to bounce back up.

Pushing wasn’t getting me anywhere.  I needed to crush it so I could move forward.

I needed a kick in the pants.

I happened to spot one of the folders that’s sitting on my desktop.  It’s filled with scanned images of notes, and screenshots I’ve made of emails, tweets, facebook posts, blog comments and other snippets of nice things people have said to me.

And I found what I needed to get through and get back to work.

It’s my own digital version of a customer testimonial binder that Adam Urbanski encourages entrepreneurs to put together (he explains it in video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKOxT1gg8lY).  I’ve shared that video here on the blog before, but today seemed like a good time to mention it again because it reminded me of just how valuable it is.

Get your focus right.

Why does something so simple help me?

It makes me take my focus off me.

Because it’s not all about me.  And that folder reminds me that it’s about you.

It’s not about you.  It’s about who you serve and the difference you make for them.  How’s that for a way to get inspired again?

Make your own.  Do it now. 

Start with whatever you’ve got, even if it’s just one testimonial or one nice comment.  Add to it as you go.  Surround yourself with inspiring things.

When you run into a confidence block, you’ll be ready to crush it and move on.

And then you won’t have to listen to Pink or dye your hair fushia to get through it.  (Unless you want to.)  But do still cuddle your family or pets.  Just because that’s always worth it.

Now, take 5 or 10 minutes and go start on your folder or binder.

Image Credit: iofoto/StockFresh

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  1. Amazing- I have a set of cards I was given this week and the card I drew today was confidence :) So true that when you take the focus off you the positive vibes can check in.
    Thanks for the reminder-I just got the idea that you could make a High vibe picture/ vision board with all those great things people have said.
    Suzie Cheel recently posted… 12 Blessing Quotes Open The Doors To GratitudeMy Profile

    1. That’s an awesome idea, Suzie! Might be fun to create one with positive quotes, too. I might have to try that for my next graphics project… :)
      Michelle Shaeffer recently posted… How to Rock it on Twitter (Infographic)My Profile

  2. When I need a boost of confidence, I get on the treadmill and walk until I have let all the stress go. I listen to great music, read, listen to some fabulous conferences, call a friend and get a pep talk…whatever it takes to get my grove back! You are inspiring!!!

  3. Amazing post! In my own life I have found so much personal growth simply by making what I do for others a priority in my life. God bless, Michelle!
    Dena Hamilton recently posted… BlessingsMy Profile

  4. Hi Michelle,

    It’s funny, life seems to be a test of how quickly you can shift your focus, when you want to.

    Your idea rocks. Move your attention to ANYthing causing you to feel high energy. We have moments of doubt. We have moments of low energy. What helps me? Realizing the momentary nature of the feeling. In the next moment: a split second, or 10 years from now….since there is only now….and it’s my choice how I feel in my nows……I can choose to feel different or the same.

    So I go within, and be still, and let the blockage to happiness dissolve, or I find an outside source that can be cause for a high energy boost. Sometimes we forget how many lives we touch. We are unaware. For me, before I started to prosper in the money department, I would go into a low energy funk at times, wondering “where’s the scratch”? Then, the Universe would invariably send me someone who needed my help, I would help them, and I would say “Oh, OK, here’s the scratch”….as in, the prospering is in the service, and when you shift your vibe, the money flows in, so you can feel more free and all that good stuff.

    Thanks for sharing your creative energy boosting strategy Michelle!

    Ryan Biddulph recently posted… The 1 Key to Spectacular Cash Gifting SuccessMy Profile

  5. I had a couple days like that this week, too, Michele. And I may have been tempted to let it go and hope inspiration would attack me the next day. However, since I am committed to the blog challenge this month, I did like you did…I pushed through. I like your idea about taking screenshots of comments. Thanks Michele! BTW — I LOVE your posts and all the great content you share :)
    Julie Henderson recently posted… LEARN TO FLY!My Profile

  6. Great idea, Michelle! I don’t have a folder like that on my desk or even on my desktop. However, I DO keep an album on Facebook of photos that I LOVE. I happen to find them inspiring and, every once in a while, I take a look at them to push me through something so that I can CRUSH IT!
    Lauren Huston recently posted… Little Lessons from LaurenMy Profile

  7. Hi Michelle – and thank you for having the courage to publish such a personal post. I believe most people go through confidence blocks of some kind, almost every day – I know I do:)

    Thanks also for sharing what works for you, testimonials are a great example. I also keep a page of inspirational quotes in view and usually find one that does the trick when I need it.

    By the way, you’re also right that this blog isn’t just about you, it’s for all of us who read it too! Keep on crushing it ;)
    Louise recently posted… Do you keep the sun shining in your business?My Profile

  8. Hello Michelle,

    As always, your content is amazing. Some of us are uncomfortable acknowledging the positives about ourselves … we thing it’s bragging or being egotistical, nothing could be farther from the truth. We need to be our own biggest fan acknowledging and celebrating the compliments we receive can boost our confidence. I have so many things that keep me moving forward: my grand daughter or taking a walk and listening to one of my favorite mystery on tapes.
    Adalia recently posted… What IfMy Profile

  9. I think all freelancers run into things like this on regular basis. At least I do and most people in similar situation had told me the same. You need to be an extremely self determined person to stay focused in this line of work, its not like your doing the same thing every day like factory workers for example, is way more complex then that.
    Cristian Balau recently posted… Why Won’t My Chickens Lay EggsMy Profile

  10. Hi, Michelle!
    What I figured out that helps me a lot whenever I experience the confidence block or self esteem issues is to talk openly about them with someone. Friends, family members…doesn’t matter…what matters is that recognizing the problem when you speak about it to someone makes it almost instantly gone. That’s why it is called a block, I guess. My way of crushing it is speaking about it.
    Kristina L. recently posted… JustDeals Coupon CodeMy Profile

  11. Nice post. I like it. thank you.

  12. Great thing to have to hand, for the inevitable times we lose focus, or get overwhelmed! For me, I’ve started to allow myself some time out, usually half an hour or so, and a walk with the dogs – something about being outside, getting the blood moving again, and just watching my dogs fool around – always lifts my spirits, and helps me regain perspective :-)
    Tanya Smith recently posted… Business Success Fundamentals – Enjoying the JourneyMy Profile

  13. Your customer testimonial binder is a great way to remind yourself of the good things you’ve written in the past that were appreciated by your readers. The confidence boost creates a virtuous cycle: You are reminded of a past success, it gives you the confidence to set and achieve a goal in the present, which gives you an additional success story to add to your binder to call upon the next time you hit a confidence block!
    Kara Lane recently posted… Confidence Part I: Why Self-Confidence is ImportantMy Profile

  14. Thanks for the confidence booster and insight, Michelle. You DO rock! I always look forward to receiving your emails and info. :)
    Cindy Caldwell recently posted… “Say What You Need to Say” – What does a John Mayer Classic Have to do With Authentic Happiness?My Profile

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