How to Show Up for Yourself
As we look to bring people together around the concept of #WorkRegardless, it is essential that we all take the time to reflect on what we have to offer the world, the importance of truly showing up as ourselves and reaching out for support when we need it.
For me, I have gone on my own personal and professional journey to find meaning, self-acceptance, boundaries and ultimately, the direction to support others in seeing their potential. On a professional level, I have been working in the social sector for the past 9 years in mental health, disability and person-centered program development. On a personal level, I went from giving myself over completely to others and their expectation to losing over 100 pounds, investing in my health and wellbeing and creating clear boundaries so that I could be the best version of myself to help others in the work that I do.
Here are some of my tips on how to showcase your strengths, bring your true self to the table and seek support no matter where you are at on your journey:
Identify and Showcase Your Strengths
We all have the propensity to be our worst critic. It is easy for us to look at ourselves and pick out flaws, to review our actions and highlight mistakes or to point to others and see their beauty so much more clearly then our own. When it comes to opportunities whether they be a new job, a promotion or a seeking out new clients in your business, we tend to want to either not see the full scope of what we bring to the table or feel awkward sharing it with others. By doing this, we are limiting our ability to reach our highest potential, to contribute the most out of ourselves into the world and to gain a life that we fill deeply aligns with our passions. You may have a mission to help people through a service, a product and even through sharing your own experience but if you do not step into the light and openly speak to all of these great gifts you will miss out on the chance to make the full scope of difference that you want.
- Ask yourself what you are truly good at? What lights you up? What do you see as your greatest strength?
- When you go to explain this to others do so as if you are presenting the gifts/talents or strengths of your closest friend. You would show them off, you would give them a boost of confidence sharing their skills and by talking up their accomplishments. This is how you should be sharing your own abilities with the world.
Show up Authentically
Can you think of a time when societal expectations and your own personal expectations impacted how we showed up in the world? In certain cases, we feel we should present with confidence, others with modesty and others as someone completely different. We feel we should present certain values or discuss certain interests because those are what are going to get us noticed by an employer or by a client. However, if we show up as someone other than who we are, we risk one of the following outcomes:
- We have to continue to show up as our alter ego, put a ton of energy and engineering into this secondary version of ourselves which is draining
- We come into a new space as our authentic self and do not match the person, environment or situation that we find ourselves in because it was aligned with this other person, not ourselves
- We attract situations that are outside of our values or are not a match because we are looking for this other person’s fit and not our own
- When you are pursuing a new opportunity, ask, does this match my core values? Does it feel aligned with what I care about? What do I visualize when I picture myself in this new job or working on this new project?
- When you are asked in an interview about your weakness, speak to something real. Rather than rehearsing one that you feel will sound good or paint you in a better light (ex: I care too much, I am such a perfectionist, I am too organized etc…) speak to something that you are actually working on. This shows self-awareness and also gives you a chance to assess the reaction.
- Ask questions about values and fit when you are meeting with a new employer or client.
Seek Support in the Good Times and in the Challenging Ones
Do you ever feel you have been conditioned to believe that you should be sucking it up and taking care of your problems on your own? Do you get the feeling that what you experience “really isn’t that bad” or that you should be able to handle it. Even more so, when you experience something good like a promotion, a new client or a new job, do you think that you are supposed to be happy and thriving rather than looking for support? This leads us to get into situations where we may be burnout out, over-tasked or left feeling stuck. We can also find this when we are exploring possibilities. We do our research, we have our gut feeling but because we like to present a finished product, we don’t take the time to brainstorm with others or get their feedback on what potential they see in us that we are not realizing.
- Reach out for help whether you are rocking it or drowning. A new opportunity brings with it new expectations, challenges and learning. This is a great time to reach out for help with delegating, time management or even for a sounding board to the approaches that you are putting in place that you have never tried before
- If you are exploring leaving your current situation, have someone else help you write your pitch. They can sometimes see things in you that you are not able to see or can present your accomplishments from a new light
- When you are struggling with anxiety around job searching or reaching out to a potential client, this is a great time to get some support. It is a tough process that something can leave you feeling doubtful. Have someone there with you to practice your interview or try out your pitch on for feedback.
What can Causeway do to help:
Causeway Work Centre is a non-profit organization that promotes inclusion by supporting people to reach their potential through meaningful employment. We run employment support programs that help people prepare for, search for and retain jobs out in the community and within our social enterprises. We support people experiencing a variety of barriers whether that be mental health challenges, poverty, lack of education or experience. We also support people who find the whole job hunt process daunting and experience anxiety when it comes to putting themselves out there. We also assist employers in finding people that are a fit for their space. If you or someone you know if seeking support when it comes to either the job search or finding employees please feel free to reach out.
#Work Regardless Campaign
We are launching a week-long social media campaign November 30th to December 4th. Our goal for this week-long campaign is to show the world that each and every one of us has something valuable to offer regardless of the challenges that we face. That’s why we work with people who have barriers to employment to find meaningful and rewarding work. We make community work by building inclusive and accessible workplaces for all.
Follow us on social media and share our stories of Work Regardless using the hashtag #WorkRegardless Share your stories of what # Work Regardless means to you by going to: