As women, we tend to lack confidence. We tend to over-explain, divert compliments, be paralyzed by what we think others think of us, and not apply for jobs that we don’t think we meet 100% of the criteria on the job description.
Recently, I was lucky enough to get one of 20 spots to the ALTIS Apprentice Coaching Program in Phoenix, Arizona, during a special women's-only conference.
In previous years, ALTIS had held over one hundred ACP's, hosting a total of around 630 coaches total. They explained, during our first few days at the program, that out of the 630 coaches, only 18 had been female in the past. ONLY 18/630 or 2.85%!!! While the business of coaching, strength, or track and field, might be an industry that draws males in more than females (long hours, historically male-run, testosterone-driven sport, etc etc), it is very possible that women were just being vastly under-represented at their courses. As a side story, about 2 years ago, I found Coach Carmen Bott (from the Wrestler's Edge) on instagram (@coachbott), and asked her what an hour of her time on the phone was worth. I gladly paid the over $100 fee to get a chance to pick Carmen's brain, ask for advice, and try to see her openness to mentoring me in the future.
2 years later, during the February 2020 ACP at ALTIS, I got to meet my mentor - who had stayed connected to me via social media and phone calls. It was an absolute pleasure! Carmen was a speaker at ALTIS that week, presenting on Confidence. After Carmen's workshop on confidence, an inspiring talk by the newly appointed female CEO Sarah Robb O’Hagan (@extremesro of @team_exos), and many other amazing presentations, left feeling a boost of confidence in myself an my direction. Here is a summary of some of the big points I took away from the amazing week:
🙋🏼♀️PRIORITIZE THE THINGS YOU ARE BEST AT.
In going into her interview for CEO of EXOS, Sarah admitted that finance wasn’t her strength, but that she had many other strengths to give. Despite admitting her weaknesses, Sarah also explained all of her forte's, including brand development and people, and this helped her to earn the position as the first female CEO of EXOS. (P.S. Look up Sarah Robb O'Hagan on apple podcasts if you want to hear more about her story. I've listened to hours of her tell her story through different podcast hosts, and not only is she hilarious, her story resonates.)
🙋🏼♀️ Compartmentalize the itty bitty shitty committee... there will always be that negative coworker or person that doubts you. Shift focus to the work that needs to get done.
I really needed to hear this around the same time I left for this conference. At work, my boss is not my fan, and through the grapevine, I have found this out. I have found it hard to compartmentalize this information, but knowing that I am busy for a reason (likely not terrible at my job like he thinks), and need to focus on the *bright spots* (my clients), helps me cope and shift focus. 🙋🏼♀️ Confidence is fragile and must be worked on daily. Trying to get confidence from external and uncontrolled sources such as social support or funding aren’t robust enough How do we do this? Self talk can be used to build confidence, and must be worked on constantly. How do we work on positive self talk to increase confidence? Use affirmations to boost positive self talk. For example, fill in the blank “I am ________, I will _________”
For example "I am a good person, and I will not let someone's opinion of me get to my head" Or, "I am smart. I will use the knowledge I have learned to do my best job and never stop studying"
🙋🏼♀️Give back participation trophies. It’s OK to fail. In fact, you will fail. More than once.
I love this one because, I have been let go of jobs twice, told that my client wanted to switch trainers, and had company promises fall out from underneath me multiple times. That is how Vital Strength was born actually - through a need to create job stability and income security.
🙋🏼♀️ Our weakness as women is to jump in to too much at once. Learn how to say no or to ask for help from mentors and friends.
This one goes back to my story above about finding Carmen Bott on instagram and reaching out to a stranger for help. Don't expect everyone to return your calls, or help you, but you have to start by being confident enough to say you don't have all the answers. 🙋🏼♀️Take a chance and apply for that job even if you don’t have 100% of the qualifications they are looking for.
Statistically, men do that, and women don’t, so stop giving your potential away! Throw in your resume incase you can WOW them with the chance to interview.
Thanks for reading! Reach out if you need me