COACHable/ Say Something Better

Photo by Jia Ye on Unsplash

Photo by Jia Ye on Unsplash


Manila, 10 October 2018 — Listening to the voice of your inner critic? Then it’s time to challenge and reframe these three self-limiting beliefs.

What I often hear from people when we start a leadership training, coaching, or mentoring session, or during a conference or workshop, are these three statements.

Here they are. For each, I have added some perspectives on how you might reframe your belief in order to move forward in a positive way.

I am not a leader

Many people still believe that you are born a leader, so you either have what it takes or you don’t. Even more people still believe that to be a leader, you need to be in a position of authority. Neither of these two beliefs is true.

What we know from research and experience is that leaders are made, not born, that leadership can be developed, and that it is perfectly possible to be a leader ‘without a title.’

Furthermore, evidence is growing that leadership can be nurtured and demonstrated at a young age. So there is no need to wait for becoming a future leader. You can start leading today!

Need some more inspiration to be convinced? Then watch this video of a 10-year old girl stepping forward to become a leader in her chosen field.

I am not a communicator

It has become a cliché to say that some people are more afraid of public speaking than of dying. For sure, speaking up in public occasions is challenging for many or most people.

How are you doing with your public speaking?

Communicating effectively—which is about more than speaking—is an essential skill for leaders to master, and mastering it is entirely possible. Have you ever listened to a speaker who has learned and practiced in a Toastmasters club? Then you know it is possible. It just takes work, and some courage to join such a community and step up to the challenge.

When you take your turn to speak at a meeting or in front of a larger audience, do people get up and walk out the door? Or do they all turn their gaze downward to their phone? If they don’t, then you’re already doing a commendable job, and you’re closer than you might think to becoming a compelling speaker and an effective communicator.

It may be that your next challenge is to just learn more about your audience, and how to speak in their language, so that what you say gets through to their heart and not just their head. This is what we practice using the Work In All Colors training.

I am not a networker

Do you think of networking as superficial and inauthentic, and as something that salespeople do to win over new customers and make more deals?

Or do you see networking as an activity that you engage in regularly and naturally because you are curious and would like to get to know more people?

Either way, it may take some courage to overcome shyness and introversion to start networking, and you may need to work on your skills to become an effective and respected networker. It takes homework and practice to get there.

Contrary to what many people believe, you can become an excellent networker even if you are introverted. There is a misunderstanding that you need to be a masterful speaker to become effective at networking.

My mentor John Maxwell said it right when he titled one of his books Good Leaders Ask Great Questions. Asking open questions to people you meet, during networking or at any time, is often the fastest way to get to know people and build the trust that is needed for collaboration (or to make a deal).

Say Something Better

If one or more of the three statements above rings familiar to you, and you have listened to your inner critic voicing them in your mind or out loud to others, then my advice is that you change your tune—reframe your limiting belief—and choose something better to say.

Anyone who focuses their mind and invests their energy in learning new skills can become a leader, a communicator, and a networker. And a good one at that!

The only important question is: when you will start to put this to the test yourself?

If you want to learn more about growing your leadership, you are welcome to write me or set up a call. I'd love to hear from you. 

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