Being a business woman is not like what you thought it’d be.
Failing at business is a major fear that keeps an entrepreneur up at night.
There is no surprise that every industry seems to be male-dominated, and a gender pay gap exists, even in business.
How do we explain this?
From my position of expertise as a Success Coach, I find it consistently that women entrepreneurs have a much harder time putting themselves out there.
Speaking up, sharing a message, and any form of articulating their value is seen as “bragging,” which triggers all sorts of shame, guilt, “who am I to speak up?” dirty buttons.
The worst fear?
“What if I say something wrong, or if I upset someone?”
Even women entrepreneurs who have been actively spreading positivity on social media, secretly have major fears around saying something that will rub people the wrong way.
As they collect throngs of followers, they’ve only been sharing what’s “safe.”
They make people feel fabulous, but they blend in and don’t stand out.
When it comes to revenue, they are struggling, and that’s where the fear of failing at business continue to haunts them.
Can you relate?
This is what women entrepreneurs typically call “the fear of visibility.”
Some women entrepreneurs can’t even make consistent posts, because they feel so frozen with this fear.
Visibility fear is also known as the fear of putting yourself out there, fear of speaking up, or the fear of sharing your message.
What’s stopping you from owning the room?
It all comes down to the fear of rejection.
Humans were born with only two fears: the fear of loud noises, and the fear of falling.
These primitive fears are survival instincts, ingrained in us for generations.
Every other fear, including the fear of speaking up, and being seen and heard, were acquired.
Your brain is wired for survival. In addition to the primitive basic fears, since being in the womb, you’ve been gathering data from your environment, to increase your chance for survival.
Those years of data become our world views and beliefs that help us survive even better.
The downside is that they also create our limitations.
Over time, you identify with your conditioned personality, as who you really are.
You come to believe that you’re shy, or are afraid of public speaking, but really, these are meanings created from experiences and observations.
You are naturally born wired for, and seeking connection.
For humans, as long as we existed, the primary way to keep us safe is to be a part of our family, our tribe, and our community.
We have a basic, automatic need to belong.
Difficult life experiences and family dynamics, such as bullying, betrayal, and isolation, lead people to stay hidden and small.
Over time, you learn to pretend and “perform,” believing that other people will judge or attack, if you put yourself out there.
If you’re afraid of public speaking, feel horrible around posting on social media, or mess up every sales call; it’s not because you need more training or practice. It’s because you’re afraid of people.
You don’t know how to establish a healthy connection with others, and get what you want.
Your mind is set on fear mode, and you avoid the limelight at all costs… even though, you may secretly fantasize about it.
This is because your mind automatically defaults to remind you of the past negative experiences of being judged, or being attacked by your fellow humans.
What if you could unlearn this, and relearn how you were when you were born?
Putting yourself out there and being seen is scary, and the truth is, some people will inevitably judge you or attack you.
But you’ll be surprised to know that showing up, expressing, and living your values, also calls forward people who resonate with your values as well!
Focusing on the positive feedback, which will be the majority of the comments, rather than the few negative feedback, helps you dissipate those fears, and train your mind to an optimistic, peaceful mindset.
How to Start Owning the Room:
- Understand that the fear of putting yourself out there is an acquired fear that you weren’t born with. This is highly important.
- Get a photo of you from when you were very young, as young as you can find it. If you don’t have it, use visualization.
- Channel this younger self, and how people loved you, because everyone loves a baby, and you weren’t born with this fear. Every baby loves to be the center of attention. Every young child enjoys being in the limelight! As a baby, you were owning the room, no matter where you were! Even without knowing more, you felt exceptional, you were always a star, and you knew it!
- During your toddler years, you can likely remember the times when you went to places and adults would do something for you, such as give you a candy or a small gift. You see how naturally charismatic and interesting you are… channel this younger self, who used to dance in public, do cartwheels, say what you think freely, because this is who you really are, it’s still you, and it’s still what makes people love you.
By spending time each day with this younger you, you can regain some of that self confidence lost to the process of growing up, and overcome your fear of being seen and heard.
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Here are some additional insights and tips that will help you conquer the fear of public speaking, and actually love being in the spotlight!