Is your lack of self-esteem the real reason why your business has plateaued and you feel at rock bottom?Oct 17, 2021
Urgh, it’s that time again. Groundhog Day.
Since when did dragging yourself out of bed and getting ready for work become such a chore? You’re a successful female business owner, a loving partner and doting mum. But progress seems to have plateaued in all areas of life lately, especially the business, and your energy levels are at an all-time low.
It’s not uncommon for business owners to reach a point of uncertainty. To be stuck at a crossroad considering a bunch of whys and what next. To feel lost weighing up why business and family life got so messy.
This article will introduce you to self-concept and the beliefs you have about yourself. Often, self-concept is where the problem and the solution lie, and it’s through a journey of self-realisation that you get back on track.
When did the scales tip out of balance?
Can you remember the last time you felt full of beans and couldn’t wait to start a new day at the office? Perhaps you can recall a time when everything was a breeze. Ideas came in abundance, the sales kept flowing and your team worked like clockwork. Life was incredible.
Hello, present day!
Life is still pretty good. You make good money, and you have a loving family. But you’re running on empty. You’ve lost your motivation and work pressures have crept into the home.
You can’t quite put your finger on it, but something is nibbling away at your patience. Affection towards your partner is dwindling and the kids always seem to be getting under your feet. Even the slightest incident or setback triggers thoughts and feelings of irritation.
- How’s your self-esteem?
- Do you get frustrated with yourself (and others)?
- Do you procrastinate?
- Do you find it hard to let go?
- Has every minor point got to be just so?
If you’ve reached this point in the article I’m guessing your head might be nodding a little. Juggling family life and building a business empire is tough for anyone, but women have a tendency to add more emotion to the equation; overthinking; low self-esteem. So let me ask you this question, “Have you considered whether you are the real reason you feel at rock bottom?”
How self-concept can affect your work
The pressure of monotony and putting yourself under enduring (and often unnecessary) stress will impact your self-concept. This state of sustained tension will alter how you perceive your behaviour and abilities – in a negative way. And this can result in low self-esteem.
Let me explain.
Low self-esteem can result from feeling uncertain about the future because of a lack of confidence in your abilities and self-worth.
“But I’m a business owner, a successful female, so how can I lack in confidence?” you might be wondering.
It’s true; you have achieved and provided so much in your career and to your family. But what often happens is that you forget to look after yourself. You trade in self-care for business progress, and while this pays off well in the first few years it’s not sustainable.
Before long burnout symptoms set in and chink away at your enthusiasm and business leadership armour. You’re human, after all, not a machine.
How can you improve your self-concept?
By becoming more aware.
To be fully aware of what’s happening requires ‘comprehension’. To comprehend what’s going on might sound obvious, but if you are tired, irritable, and running on empty, the situations you see become unclear.
Think of it a bit like looking at photographs of your babies through dirty glasses. The clarity of colour and definition of their cute faces will be distorted and unclear. It’s this ambiguity filter that affects how you view your world. It causes uncertainty and assumptions – and neither presents a clear picture.
If you were to see the photographs with enhanced vision and the added benefits of technicolour surround sound and 3D, you would understand the challenges faced. You would see the situation in more detail, interpret the meaning on a big picture level, and therefore be well-equipped to handle it with focus.
Sometimes the only way to become more aware is to work through challenges and situations, both with support and on your own, to unpick and reset unhelpful and unconscious behaviours.
It’s essential to understand what’s happening. As well as affecting your mood, it could also impact your earning potential because, as a business owner, you lead from the front.
The growth of your business comes from developing ideas, seeing improvements to streamline processes or create new opportunities, and leading your team.
Working through self-concept challenges
A client came to me feeling overwhelmed, frustrated and lost. Let’s call her Tina. Tina was incredible at what she did and had a long waiting list of clients. But she was bored of the day-to-day routine. Tina had sunk into a perpetual motion of activity that no longer brought her joy and sapped her energy. She had fallen out of flow.
What Tina needed was to find her zone of genius again. To find the elements of life that filled her with excitement and motivation. To clear the blocks that stood in her way. And that started with Tina’s self-concept.
Together, we began to unravel unhelpful behaviours such as perfectionism, control, lack of trust and the inability to delegate.
Often, these behaviours stem from past incidents and experiences. The thoughts, feelings and emotions attached to these behaviours build up over time out of the need for self-preservation. It creates a blurred reality and allows self-concept to deteriorate.
But there is hope. There’s always a workable solution.
Within twelve months Tina had relinquished her controlling tendencies and recruited and trained a trusted team. She signed a lease for a premises and new robust systems and processes streamlined the business. Tina finally booked a holiday and enjoyed a few day trips with her family.
By building safe boundaries with clients and loving personal relationships, Tina began to ooze positive energy once again. This enthusiasm for her life infected others, and the feeling of work being a chore faded. She learnt a new skill that opened a door for her to travel to New Zealand and Australia to reach a new client base.
Tina’s business tripled in revenue, and she felt more in control. Her life got incredible once again!
Steer your business away from plateau - and love life!
Working on self-concept and understanding what gets you (and keeps you) in flow enables you to create what you want in life. It’s down to you.
If this article has resonated and you feel, on some level, that your self-concept has taken a hit or that your business has plateaued for reasons you’re unsure of, let’s talk.
Sometimes processing situations, being questioned, challenged and held accountable by an outside influence can make a huge difference.