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When I first started out as a virtual assistant, my closest experience to use as a reference for remote work was my position with HSN. I was a WAH supervisor with them when I decided to take a chance and become self-employed as a VA. Truth be told, I was scared witless! But now, I’m going to teach you the lessons I’ve learned to help you go from timid to confident as an online service provider.
As a single mom for two decades, I was blessed with a side effect of the hardship… not letting fear stop me from taking action. I didn’t have the luxury of giving into any fears I had that might keep me from trying stuff. Because I was the sole source of food and shelter for my son. So I had to learn decades ago how to take action in spite of any fears that may have been plaguing me.
I’m not saying it’s easy. I still get scared. I have a potential client call next week with someone famous, and their manager, and their assistant. They need Seva help… which I know better than the back of my hand! And I’m still scared.
I share with you that I’m scared because it doesn’t matter what level you’re at, you will always have obstacles that will challenge you as you grow and your business grows. Matter of fact, I have this theory of what I think makes up a strong business. There’s four points to it. Wanna know what it is? Ok pay attention… content, value, relationships, and GROWTH CHALLENGES.
The point we’re talking about today is growth challenges. Because learning how to step into what makes you awesome as an online service provider is a challenge. Our whole life we’ve been wired to follow, not lead. In school they want everyone to be a square peg that fits into a round hole. In the corporate world it’s most often the case that you have to bend to the powers that be all time. In your relationships with family and friends the art of compromise is key.
But becoming an online entrepreneur… well, now that’s the real test of your character. Don’t you feel like that most days?
Tell the truth, when it comes down to it, that pissed off client is your ball of knots to undo. That launch with huge tech issues is your baby to get off the ground. And that potential client that could pay you and your team for the next quarter, the responsibility of persuading them that you are the answer to their problem falls square on you and your ability to sell yourself confidently to others.
I don’t know who you think YOU are, but I feel like I’ve learned more about who I CAN BE during my last three years in business as an entrepreneur than I ever learned in 41 years of regular ol’ real life. I’ll take that challenge all day, every day. And after glorying in that space, it’s actually helped me to become more confident.
And I want you to get there, too. So let’s get to it, shall we?
Here are my best tips on how to go from Timid to Confident as an Online Service Provider.
1. Celebrate failure.
I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. Michael Jordan
You need to learn how to reframe failure. Start to see failure as something to be celebrated. Pretty radical, I know. But it’s true. If you learn how to manage failure, you’ll understand what I mean. So, how do you manage failure?
Take responsibility for it. It’s not a negative. It’s an opportunity for growth. When you face failure head on, and know that something went wrong, also know that it’s within your power to correct and get back on the right path. You know, one of those growth challenges I mentioned… learning how to embrace growth opportunities.
Failure in this context won’t paralyze you with fear anymore. Instead, you’ll learn how to recognize your role in what went wrong, and how to prevent that misstep in the future. You’ll be able to go through the gaps in your processes and find where the weaknesses lie. You’ll figure out the proper systems that need to be in place to not only prevent the same situation in the future, but also improve your whole experience for your team, and in the long run, your clients.
Learning how to leverage the worst of everything will help you grow as a person, a small business owner, an entrepreneur, a team leader, a spouse, a parent, etc. You won’t have a disaster mindset. You’ll have an overcomer’s mindset.
Because how we think is how we feel. Look for the silver lining and you’ll find it.
2. Expect exceptional results.
When you show up, half the battle is already won. Seriously. Most people puss out. Or end up being unreliable. If you show up, and do your best, that’s all anyone can do. Push through the obstacles, the challenges, and the difficult situations that come up.
What’s more, enjoy the difficulty! I know, I know. I am crazy. Ask anyone. LOL! But really, you’ll grow. The challenge will give you a different perspective. And you’ll become a better leader.
Our minds are powerful beyond measure. When you master the art of expecting yourself to always show up and then always do your best… you’ll always deliver. Then you will come to expect exceptional results from yourself and those around you. And you’ll have the experience to deliver them, too.
You’ll stop focusing on failure and set higher expectations because you’ve harnessed the power within you to rise to the challenge. Each and every time.
3. Practice makes perfect.
Practicing for a task or responsibility is important. The act of going through the process, even if you make mistakes, will help you feel more confident. Because the mistakes are part of a ‘dress rehearsal’ if you will. Right? It’s expected to have to tweak some things to pull off the result.
So in practicing you work out the kinks before hand instead of leaving them to chance. You get comfortable with your role and responsibility. And when it’s time, you’re able to confidently deliver. Because you’ve prepared yourself to succeed by practicing.
4. Get comfortable being uncomfortable.
The time to take action with calculated risk is NOW. When you take risks regularly, your comfort zone will grow with you. You’ll gain more confidence. Think about it, when you taught your child how to ride a bike, it hurt the first few times they fell. Didn’t it? You and them! At some point you have to take a chance and let go of the training wheels. You will never know the greatness you’re capable of if you never try to find it.
5. Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business.
Have you ever heard that quote before? I love it. It’s badass. And on my good days I like to think I’ve got a bit of badass in me 🙂 But I digress…
Everyone needs to print this quote out and put it up by your computer, carry it in your wallet, put it on your dashboard, your mother in law’s refrigerator… everywhere really. Because in life you have to deal with people all the time. Right? And you need to be constantly reminded of this principle every time we get a little butt hurt about something. Suck it up and get on about YOUR business, not theirs.
6. Cherish compliments.
Genuine, heartfelt, and deserved compliments… they’re almost non existent now. We live in a society full of critics who happily share their opinions, mostly when not asked.
Just a side note, but did you know it takes four positive comments to negate ONE negative comment?!? No wonder we’re all walking around like wall flowers…
So when someone takes the time to truly compliment you, do not disrespect them and their beautiful thoughts by throwing some lame objection in their face. Open up your soul, yes I’m getting woo for a minute, open up your soul and let that resonate with you until you feel your spirit move a little. Then keep that shit under lock and key for all those days when you have to deal with the critics instead, mmmkay?
Take it a step further and create a compliment/affirmation journal. It can be digital or handwritten… whatever’s easiest for you. Write down the touching things people share with you about yourself over time. Refer back to it on your down days. THOSE are the messages you should use to record your inner self talk. Screw the critics.
7. The 80/20 rule applied to confidence.
Most of you have probably heard that saying that goes something like, “If you know how to do 80% of a task, go for it and learn the other 20% on the fly.” You should absolutely try this principle in your business. Let the potential client know, so you’re both covered if there’s a learning curve. But give yourself a chance to prove to you and only you that you got this. And keep leveling up.
But don’t believe me because I said so. Believe me because you’ve found out for yourself.
Most people need a little help getting to this space in their business. I’ve been there and someone helped me rise above it. And now I get the awesome privilege of helping my coaching clients and course students get there, too.
So if you’re ready to make a change, confidently go where you haven’t gone before! We need what you’ve been afraid to show the world!
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Now, are you ready to take action with me? Let’s do this!