Do you struggle to invest in yourself?
One of my favourite parts of my post-launch strategy is reading survey responses from my community. I send this survey out on the day after I close the doors to my programs and learn so much for the feedback and responses.
An example of some of the questions that I ask include:
What was the biggest determinant for not signing up to the program?
What do you feel is MOST holding you back?
What would it take for you to sign up for the program next time?
But it doesn’t matter what questions I’m asking or what program I am receiving feedback on, I always get a similar response. And it all comes back to the fear that women have of investing in themselves and their business.
You might think that your fear to invest in yourself is as unique and different as you are. But I’ve found that most women all have the same fears and blocks holding them back from investing in themselves.
Here are some of the reasons…
We are afraid that we’re not ‘perfect’
I hear from women all of the time who tell me that they’re not quite ready for my programs as ‘my product is not quite ready’ or ‘my list isn’t big enough’ or ‘I’m afraid of failure’. Have you ever felt like that too? Do you want all of your ducks in a row before you even start to think about investing in yourself? This all comes down to the fact that we are afraid that we’re not perfect and we believe that we must be perfect in order to succeed.
In Reshma Saujani’s TED talk (video below), she talks about how girls are taught to be perfect and boys are taught to be brave. In summary, girls are taught to avoid risk and failure and gravitate towards careers or projects that they know that will be great in. And as a result, we miss out on opportunities to learn and grow and thrive.
So what if we ditched the need to be perfect and embraced our bravery instead? What if we allowed ourselves to experiment and ‘try things out’ without needing everything to be ‘perfect’ before we start?
We want to be sure about the return-on-investment
As I said before, women like to avoid risk. They want to be sure of the results and sure on the return-on-investment. But the only way to be sure, is to really back yourself. To say “There are no real certainties in this life but I’m willing to back myself and work really hard to achieve my desired results”.
Because if we only invested in those things that we felt had an “easy or certain return-on-investment” then we would never really be challenging or pushing ourselves to reach new heights.
We undervalue our strengths
Another theme from my post-launch surveys, and many conversations with women, is that we undervalue our strengths saying things like:
“I don’t feel like I’m advanced enough yet”
“I just need to know more about [insert skill] before I dive into the program”
But when we say this, we’re also failing to recognise our strengths and the knowledge and skills that will support us.
Maybe you don’t know much about technology but you’re great at writing copy?
Or maybe you are really good at working one-on-one with clients but the online world has you feeling in over your head?
What if you stopped overemphasising those things that you’re not so strong in and invest in your strengths instead?
As Rob Bell says in his book How To Be Here: “Who you aren’t isn’t interesting.”
Focus on what you are good at and passionate about instead!
We never think it’s the right time
In my last launch, I asked my community “What it would take to sign up for the program next time?” And you know what 50% of the responses were? It had to be the ‘right timing’.
What if I told you there was never going to be a right time? What if I told you that only you were in charge of carving out the time? Once again, there are always going to be parts that are imperfect. There are always going to be parts that are missing. There are always going to be other commitments and things pop up?
Once again, it’s never going to be perfect but you have everything you need to succeed!
So tell me: can you relate to some of these reasons or fears about investing in yourself? Maybe you’ve even said some of those things to yourself or others?
Now we know the reasons why you might be afraid to invest in yourself, here are some reasons why we should take the plunge and do it anyway…
It challenges us to reach new heights
Investing in my first program (or any of the big investments I’ve made) was one of the scariest decisions that I made. But I knew that if I invested the money then I had to be open to up-leveling my business and making the investment worth it. It really was the nudge that I needed to implement some new strategies that would allow me to reach new heights.
It allows us to be brave
You know how Reshma Saujani was talking about choosing bravery over the desire for perfection? The best way to embrace bravery and ditch the need to be perfect is to just go for it and invest in yourself!
It forces us to back ourselves
Choosing to invest in yourself is the ultimate declaration that you’re ready to back yourself and your strengths. You might not know everything but you’re willing to back the strengths, skills and knowledge that you do have!