It’s hard to imagine, in this age of personal branding, that there are still people who have a hard time stepping into the spotlight when it comes to their businesses. I can remember the feeling when I started up - not wanting anyone to know who I was. I can also clearly remember the feeling of letting that go, showing up, and seeing the positive results from it.
Lisa Fabrega, a leadership coach and Founder of the Capacity Code, shared the most common reasons so many women are terrified to step into the spotlight for their business—and it all comes down to expanding their capacity. She defines capacity as your ability to hold, handle and receive every next level of your growth. These are must-have skills when becoming the face of your brand. If you want to become the “Martha Stewart” of your business, but something is holding you back, see if it’s due to one of Lisa’s four root causes.
1. You Don’t Have Strong Emotional Or Boundary Capacities
As the face of your new brand, the buck stops with you. Instead of people criticizing Company X, they will now be mentioning you by name. “If you know deep down that your boundaries could use some strengthening you might be holding back because you’re worried about suddenly being overwhelmed with people’s requests or receiving direct criticism for expressing your opinions,” says Fabrega. “You’ll need to build your emotional and boundary capacity by getting comfortable saying ‘no’ even when it disappoints others.”
You’ll also need to embrace that everyone isn’t going to like your opinions. And that’s OK. If you’re nervous about expressing an opinion, try sharing it with someone you trust first rather than a stranger. It helps to know that even though some people will disagree with you, the people whose opinions you value don’t.
2. You’re Afraid Of Being Seen
Even when we have successes, we’re almost always hiding a key part of ourselves.
“The hidden parts of you are often what create the most rewarding and lucrative returns for your business. But we’re scared what our family and friends will think if we reveal, for example, that we filed for bankruptcy years ago or had an experience with domestic violence. Intellectually you know everyone won’t agree with or understand your past, but when it happens...oof! One business coaching client I had was afraid to share with people that she had an intuitive gift. She was struggling to get people to attend a live event that she hosted every year. But once she sent an email to her list explaining that she had these gifts and started incorporating them into her events, she was able to more than triple her attendance rates,” shares Fabrega. “If you’re a person of color, it feels doubly dangerous whenever a person leaves a nasty comment or criticizes you because of real life, discriminatory experiences you’ve previously had. But if you truly want to expand your visibility capacity, you have to show up in full and allow the hidden parts of yourself to be seen.”
3. Behind The Scenes, You Look More “Train Wreck” Than “Swiss Timepiece”
Becoming the face of your brand demands order, cohesion and support that’s unique to you and your business. This is structural capacity and without it - once people have higher expectations of you - your business turns into a game of Jenga.
“One client I worked with had a million followers on social media, a best-selling book and loads of media coverage—but was petrified at the thought of starting a new company and being the main personality of that brand. She was a jumbled mess behind the scenes because she didn’t know how to deliver her genius or even what role her proprietary process played in her business. But once she started to hone in on her true passion, she was able to get rid of that jumbled mess, simplify her business model, get clear on her messaging and double her revenue in the process,” says Fabrega. “For others, getting to function like a Swiss timepiece might look like getting more support at home so you can focus on your brand, creating a more customized daily work flow (rather than using someone else’s performance hack) or reassessing whether or not the people on your team right now will be able to grow with you.”
4. Your “Inside” Doesn’t Match Your “Outside”
“You’ve probably heard this referred to as alignment, and yet there’s more to it than that. Your values are your own personal north star—even if your north star isn’t considered ‘popular’ or ‘sexy.’ Perhaps it’s time to consider the reason you’re so tired all the time is not really due to how much you’re working, but how hard you’re at the grindstone trying to be someone or something you’re not,” advises Fabrega. “Another client I worked with was resisting becoming the face of her brand because she felt like a fraud. Not because she wasn’t brilliant or accomplished, but because she didn’t have enough experience trusting in herself. She wouldn’t be able to hide behind an old, misaligned brand this time. She would be stepping out on her own. When this happens, you may be tempted to give up, further delay your progress or stay ‘safe.’ Don’t. This is the exact moment you need to confidently step forward and shine.”
Becoming the face of your brand takes guts, but you’ll certainly reap a lot of rewards.
Read more from Forbes
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