Are You Legitimate?

Are You Legitimate?

Hey! I’m not asking whether your parents were married when you were born! I’m asking whether you believe in your abilities and the results you can help clients achieve.

This came up for me this weekend when I was watching an online webinar hosted by a woman with great connections. 

She’s from a small town in my home state of North Carolina and is a business coach and consultant for entrepreneurs. She also teaches at the Fuqua Business School at Duke University and is often published in the Harvard Business Review and Forbes Magazine.

Quite frankly, I have Credential Envy. 

She’s affiliated with big-name institutions, and I’m not. 

I began wondering about feeling legitimate in my business. I would love for some big-name institutions to put me on their roster and in their publications. It would feel like a Stamp of Approval.

I used to be affiliated with household names – CBS News and AT&T were my employers for several years in New York City. I felt validated having big name associations – like I was something because I worked for them.

And it was just not worth it – the office politics, the sense of being a tiny cog in a big wheel, the stress of not doing my own thing. I was the same person after I left those companies, just without their names on my paycheck.

Maybe you can relate. Do you ever yearn to be validated by a big name company or organization? 

We do love our brand names – they give us a sense of security and familiarity. We trust them or know that others do.

But there’s a lie in this adoration for big names. 

Sometimes the big names fail us. Sometimes authorities lie. Sometimes the credential looks good from the outside but is ugly inside.

The woman whose credentials I envy may have a kicking business with smooth sailing. More likely she’s like the rest of us – wrestling her business to the ground on a daily basis. 

And I don’t mean to make light of the prestigious institutions that she’s associated with. She is bright and works hard to get where she is. I admire her for that.

But many of us have a burning desire to make things better, to help people, and make our mark in this world. 

We can probably agree there is plenty of change afoot these days. And plenty of situations and institutions need to be changed. 

There are plenty of people and places that need our passion, dedication, and desire to serve.

If you’re waiting for someone or something to validate you, you won’t make your way out into the world and do your work. 

If you’re waiting for a Stamp of Approval, please don’t. What you’re up to may never be recognized as a household name. 

But that’s the nature of change. It consists of new ideas and new applications of ideas to solve problems and create solutions that have never been tried before. 

Change comes from people who have an idea, a mission, and the persistence to put their passion into action.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr said, “Everybody can be great because anybody can serve.”

So right here, right now, let’s have a Self-Validation Ceremony with Certificates of Achievement and all. Just like the Wizard of Oz did for the Lion, the Tin Man, and the Scarecrow. 

What would you like to appreciate in yourself?

·      Not giving up?

·      Going for it when it was hard?

·      Persisting when you were scared?

·      Doing your thing even when others said you couldn’t do it?

·      Following your guidance and making it work?

·      Figuring it out?

Whatever you are most proud of, that is on your Validation Certificate. You can imagine it and present it to yourself. If you are crafty, you can make one and pin it up on your bulletin board.

The point is that you and your work and what you bring to this world are innately valuable.

Please validate and celebrate yourself. I shall do the same.

Well done, You! 

P.S.  If you are a woman service-based business owner who would like more clients and income without being sleazy and hype-y, please consider joining me for the upcoming event called Choosing Abundance.

This 2-day Authentic Marketing Retreat is designed for the woman who is driven to do her work and make the world a better and more beautiful place while remaining true to her expertise and her values.

It will be held from 9 to 5 each day in Durham, NC on October 19th and 20th, 2018 and will answer the question, 

“How do I get heard above all the noise in the marketplace?”

For this event, I’m gathering a small group of dedicated business owners who want to clarify their message, plan out their marketing for the next year, and talk about what they do with confidence and magnetism so they attract the right clients and enjoy the income they desire and deserve.

If this speaks to you, please click here to learn more and book a complimentary conversation with me.