Are You Embracing the Opportunities That Can Help You Grow?By Homaira Kabir
Have you ever had an opportunity come your way that's made you giddy with excitement? The next thing you know, you've said no and are now living with the regrets of your decision.
Or have you mulled over and over an opportunity, reasoning with your passion until you've blown every breath of life out of it? And you're now back in the same old job that has become too small for your capabilities.
Most of us have been there—reacting with fear and then justifying our actions to make ourselves feel better. Even though this may work in the moment, sooner or later we begin to regret the chances not taken, the paths we left untrodden, the opportunities we were too afraid to embrace. And sometimes, it even feels like it’s too late to do anything about it.
In my work as a leadership coach, I've found that people generally fall into five categories in the way they respond to opportunities. Read on to see where you tend to be, and what you can do to show up with courage and excitement.
Reaction 1: “I don't deserve it.”
This reaction is common when you believe you're not worthy of the opportunity that has come your way. I see clients look down or turn their faces away when talking about it. There is shame and, with it, the thought "Who am I to deserve this?" If that’s you, think of this beautiful quote by Brené Brown in her book Braving the Wilderness: "Stop scouring people’s faces for evidence that you’re not enough. You will always find it because you’ve made that your goal." Bring to mind all the qualities within you: your character strengths and virtues, and how you show up with them every day.
Reaction 2: “I can't do this.”
This is another negative core belief that can stop people from stepping forward. Unfortunately, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy because when you don’t take risks, you have few of those critical experiences that help you develop self-efficacy and competence. Recent research shows that individuals develop mastery through the actions they take. If you don’t have confidence in your abilities, spend some time every day taking in your past and present moments of success, learning, and growth so they