so this is how it usually starts… you start a biz and you are super excited about your idea. you have something awesome you want to share with the world (a talent, a skill, some expertise, some information, a cool product, a fantastic service… whatever.)
you quickly realize that that there is a lot to learn about biz. you try to read and absorb and learn and study and grow and do as much as you possible can… feeling like you need to figure it all out, become an expert in so many things.
(i am guessing we are ALL still in this phase in some way – you never really do stop learning and growing your biz.)
but the trouble is that all of this effort to learn – which is a good thing – can sometimes have an unintended consequence.
we can be left with this ningling feeling of inadequacy… like we are just not ever going to be good at certain things, no matter how much we try.
it might sound like this…
- i’ve tried, i’m just not good with…
- i know i have to… but i just can’t wrap my head around it.
- i feel like a bit of a fraud when i…
- i’ve tried and tried but i can’t seem to fall in love with…
one of the things that is really helping me to overcome this is learning more about me.
(instead of learning more about building a biz!)
over the past year i have become a bit of a self-assessment junkie. i feel like every time i do one of those “online tests” i learn another little piece of my puzzle, and things click into place.
none of it is super surprising – it is more like remembering who you are instead of trying to be everything to everyone all of the time.
my favourite assessments have been…
- strengths finder – the idea here is to identify your top aptitudes and weaknesses – this can help you uncover your natural talents and help you hone in on what your sweet spot is.
- personality type – myers briggs typing creates 16 personality types (INFP, ESTJ etc) based on 4 characteristics (introvert/extrovert, sensing/intuition, feeling/thinking, judging/perceiving)
you can do a simple test here and read more about the 4 characteristics & 16 types. you can also purchase an assessment – i liked this one. there are a variety of free questionnaire style personality assessments floating around too – but i prefer the ones where you see and understand the 2 sides of the coin and choose the one that fits (because i think it is just as powerful to realize what you aren’t as it is to celebrate what you are.)
- archetypes – i have fallen in love with archetyping. it is sort of a combination of your strengths, your motivations, your values, your personality.
again there are some great archetype apps and assessments out there, but i really love this brand archetype assessment and this money archetype assessment. one, because i think it is important to learn what archetypes you aren’t as it is to know which you are (some assessments only give you your top archetype but really your top three and bottom three can be hugely valuable to know). plus both of these ladies offer further resources if you want to learn more about how to apply that archetype info to your biz. (the assessments are both free.)
why should you learn about you?
as i’ve mentioned i think it is as powerful to see who you are not as it is to know who are. no one thing (strength, personality type, archetype etc.) is more highly weighted than the other. it just is. you just are.
and it is really helpful in understanding others too. the personality test helped me understand someone who often seems to rub me the wrong way – i realized we were total opposites on every scale, and his way was merely his way, mine is mine. i let go of the drama. the archetypes helped me to understand business peers who are amazing hustlers, awesome salespeople, fantastic with finances, or totally comfortable being in the spot light. their way is not better than my way – it is just who they are. just as i am me.
i am not saying you have to put yourself in a box or slap a label on your forehead. you don’t even have to share what you discover about yourself. you might find some of these to be total rubbish. that’s ok.
but you might find something interesting about yourself. i realized that i identify with both extrovert qualities and introvert qualities – i am an ambivert! which means i only partially identify with 2 personality types. since i also identify as a rule breaker i think that is pretty cool.
learning more about you can help your biz in many ways...
- you can get closer to understanding what your *thing* is – that unique thing you are meant to be putting into this world (i call it your spark)
- you can amplify your strengths – doing more of what you do best (and worrying less about the other stuff that isn’t in your realm of awesomeness)
- you can learn more about what you can improve, if you indeed need to do so for your biz, without feeling like you have to be an expert at it – rather you can just decide to do your best
- you can decide what to outsource – hiring people with those gifts to do their magic while you concentrate on yours
- you can be more accepting of some of the people & practices you meet along the way, while releasing the need to do the same
- you can let go of that need to be perfect at everything (and stop beating yourself up when you aren’t. because you are good at you. and that’s all you need to be good at.)
i think deep down, some of us (me!) have a fear that we’ve got to change in order to make it.
that we can’t be soft or generous or loving or outspoken or shy or reserved or transparent or whatever it is we worry we are.
that we need to hustle or love the spotlight or be tough or take risks or write meticulous plans or whatever it is we don’t feel comfortable doing.
that somehow we must change into someone that we don’t really want be, if we want to have success.
you don’t have to change. i don’t have to change.
yes we can grow. yes we can learn. yes we can evolve. but we can still be exactly who we are. we just get to do more of what we are here to do!
so it's worth learning more about you... you can build your biz, your way, by doing what you do best. being you!