Imagine having big welts on your leg but you never saw anything bite you?
Welcome to the world of No-See-Ums. Here are some internet descriptions:
I’ve noticed another No-See-Um that afflicts business owners and professionals. We “No-See-Um” our accomplishments or progress.
We are much more proficient at noticing what we didn’t accomplish, what’s missing, what hasn’t gotten done, where someone might have been critical of us, or anything else in the negative arena. We-See-Ums!
By stepping over what we’re accomplishing, we negatively impact our feelings of success and connection with others. We feel worse basically.
A lot of this is family and cultural conditioning. We are trained to notice what is wrong, what is missing and internal conversations of shoulds and self judgement. A lot of us think we won't be motivated if we don't criticize ourselves. Not true!
You can break this pattern but it takes practice.
One practice I use is to capture accomplishments as I go through the week and write them down. Otherwise, they disappear. No-See-Ums. Then at the end of the week I can see progress and appreciate my efforts and success.
Even better, share your accomplishments with others. The accomplishments will expand and you'll be able to appreciate yourself more.
Business owners don’t have a boss to tell them “Good job! Progress!” So it’s an important piece to put in for yourself. Try it and watch what happens to your energy and fulfillment.
Start to See Ums, and I promise you won't have painful welts to endure for a week!
If you'd like to connect, schedule some time here.
A perfect Saturday morning for me is drinking coffee, appreciating my view of the Atlantic, and listening to Hillbilly at Harvard from 9-1 EST. I love the music, the wacky lyrics and best of all -- the host Cousin Lynn. He just says whatever is there, whenever it’s there and it doesn’t seem to matter that he’s broadcasting across the World Wide Web (which he likes to say).
Cousin Lynn communicates in a way many people do.
He just talks. He’s on the radio so it is a monologue and not a dialogue. I call it “mind on broadcast”.
That’s great for a quaint radio show, but it doesn’t work well in communication.
If you’d like to increase your impact of your communication, consider these two important points before opening your mouth:
It seems so simple but you’d be surprised how little people do it. Especially when it’s going to be a difficult conversation. If it’s a challenging conversation, we often are uncomfortable and get the attention on ourselves, not focusing about the other person at all.
I find even consultants and coaches don’t have this skill down. I was at a consultants’ meeting a while back and consultants would broadcast their thoughts on the subject at hand, talk on and on, and seem to be unaware that people had stopped listening. I wondered if that works when they’re consulting with a client. This week I published my thoughts on raising the bar on the coaching industry on Medium.
If you want to increase your impact in your communication and your influence in your organization, let’s talk. You can schedule a complimentary session here.
Someone starts a business that serves people well. It grows. And grows. The business owner is working faster and faster, and longer and longer hours. Pretty soon, she forgets why she started the business in the first place. The pleasure is gone. The fulfillment is missing. Maybe she tries to hire a few folks to help, and it doesn’t go as planned. She starts to give up, or just keeps trying to work faster, more, better.
This is a very familiar scenario to most business owners.
A key focus at this stage of business is to learn to replicate yourself—or as potential clients who called me said “Help! I need to clone myself.”
The challenge is that you’ve learned to do what you do over time. It’s natural to you, even obvious and bit automatic. You may forget that it wasn’t when you started out.
So how do you develop others? You can’t inject them with your experience from the last 5 years. A lot of it you don’t realize you have inside of you.
That’s where coaching and talking with others come in. You need to extricate the gold out of you so it can be replicated. You need to learn to produce results through others vs. doing it all yourself. It’s a tough shift for many business owners. How do you keep a pulse on their business and let go of some of what you’re doing and tactical stuff? How do you create a plan to develop others that is chunked down, clear, specific, and replicable over time AND where the employee feels supported, appreciated, and not overwhelmed while they learn? The plan also needs to involve a lot of dialogue, examples and practice with employees.
That takes time, darn it, something you don’t have a lot of. But every minute you invest here will free up hours for you later, if you do this well.
This is one of my favorite processes to engage in with business owners. They start to own their value and what they’ve accomplished, which helps them both increase their prices while also developing others and their employees’ careers. The business grows and gets past the bottleneck: YOU. It becomes fulfilling and exciting again as you can be more creative and strategic.
If you’d like to talk about how to take your business to the next level and remove the obstacles that are getting in the way of growth, schedule a strategy session with me here.
Like my clients who are approaching their fifties and after, I find myself drawn to contribute all I've learned over my career to my field.
The psychologist Erikson points to this in his theory about psychosocial development. He talks about the stages of care (40-59) and wisdom (60 and above) -- and the desire to contribute back to others in these stages.
It's not infrequently I hear horror stories about experiences with coaches. I believe this is a conversation that is important to have for both coaches and clients.
Today I published this article on Medium which you can read it here. And follow me on Medium if you like. I'm just starting this conversation. I have a lot to say about it!