WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU'RE FEELING INADEQUATE?
In the second quarter of last year I got a job I can only describe as a dream come true. The pay was okay, the people were warm, but the challenge however was I didn’t have a lot of experience to match the role. Months in, I found myself dealing with feelings of inadequacy. You could say it probably wasn’t a strong area for me and be right, but even my successes were clouded with feeling like I wasn’t good enough.
If you struggle with feeling inadequate, I wrote this article for you. But first, let me be clear; you have whatever job you have now because you have earned it! Whether through your past experience, the way you sold yourself during the interview, or your potential to deliver on that role which your employer saw before bringing you on board. Quit thinking that you don’t deserve it because you do.
That said, what do you do when you’re feeling inadequate?
1. Focus on your area of strength. At work I was excited about the parts of work that came naturally to me; the very reason work had any fulfilment for me. If you find yourself struggling at work, try to isolate the different segments of your work and identify the parts you enjoy. Every time you get a chance to work on them, give it your best. What this will do for you is help feel empowered.
2. Work on your weakness. Much as I enjoy the things that I do, I am aware that in the long run, it’ll make me a non-productive staff if I paid attention to parts of my job that only interest me. An entrepreneur at the start-up stage for instance doesn’t have the liberty to isolate tasks and choose what they like, often they’re bootstrapping and can’t afford the expertise that is required, so they do the bulk of the work, including the things they don’t like. You might never perfect your skills in your area of weaknesses but at least, try. It’s good for you and the opportunities you will get in the future. Who knows, the sales skills that you dread just might be what you need to sell something to someone someday.
3. Have a dream and a goal, not either, both. With a dream and a goal you’ll inevitably find yourself developing skills you didn’t think you’d need, which is one of the perks of entrepreneurship, that in working on a dream, business owners develop new skills.
It could be heading a part of the company you work for, meeting a particular target at work (make it your own), starting your business, learning a skill, whatever it is. After you have clarified what it is that you want to achieve, actively work on birthing it. What happens is, the more you achieve something for yourself, the more you’ll shed feelings of inadequacy, boosting your confidence as you go along.
What are some of the ways you’ve conquered the feeling of inadequacy?