I suppose I should have known it would happen at one point. That this crazy starting-your-own-business-with-two-toddlers-and-two-other-jobs-simultaneously would, eventually, result in self-doubt.
I started my business this year, and it's going well. I'm proud of all that I've achieved while juggling my other commitments, both work and family (oh yes, and looking after me). I’m talking the talk, I'm making amazing connections with wonderful women, I'm absolutely loving creating new content for my website, my Facebook and Instagram. You name it I’m doing it, working my bottom off to try and make my long-term vision a reality.
To kick-start my business and to learn from other women’s brilliance I’ve joined a coaching group, held in exactly the kind of format I intend to be running in the not too distant future. The women I have virtually met are intelligent, insightful, hilarious and care passionately about what we are all trying to do - serve women in all capacities, whether that be in pregnancy, birth or crazy Mum-hood. They have been my cheerleaders, people to bounce ideas off, to share all the daft questions and to bond over our blossoming businesses. I think they're amazing, and they think I'm pretty fab too.
BUT. And it's a big but. I've started to feel the doubt. The fear. The stories we tell ourselves are starting for me, and mine aren't always nice ones.
I am desperate to stay as "authentic" (i.e. being myself and being honest) as possible, while aware that I need to sell myself as often as possible, and to as many different interested parties. The fatigue of needing to make the connection long-lasting and profound, and ultimately to monetize it so that I can pay my mortgage. The fear that somebody is going to "find me out", to say I'm not the right person to be doing this, that I should go back to something quieter, safer, without risk.
I feel the frustration of knowing that this imposter syndrome is going against everything I talk to wonderful, powerful women about. I wholeheartedly believe in my message, that women have incredible power and that they should realise it and celebrate it. I know that I and the women with whom I work have incredible potential, and that rejoicing in that is a brilliant thing. That I have all the tools and knowledge I need to rationalise these feelings and to turn them on their heads.
Right now, that just feels like such hard work.
So what am I doing to overcome it? I'm calling upon all the techniques and tools I've learnt as a hypnobirthing practitioner, a teacher, a wife, a singer, and of course, as a kickass MUM.
I'm working damn hard on my mindset - it takes practice you know - journalling (or as I put it, writing in my diary!), imagining how I will feel when my business has the flow and pace I so desire. I'm going to bed at a reasonable hour so that I start the day with a more peaceful mind. I'm using affirmations and practicing them. I'm reading articles from other inspiring businesswomen.
I'm making sure that every single part of my business offers women and their partners amazing value, helps them on a level that is tingly and wonderful, that is full of positivity and support.
I'm eating quite a lot of chocolate, having quite a few baths and getting my nails done - being kind to myself.
And I'm being honest - laying my thoughts out in this open way, stopping trying to be totally "authentic" because what does that even mean?! I'm just writing how I feel, in this moment.
That seems like a pretty good start.