You are not alone

by | Sep 28, 2020 | Leadership

When I run webinars, I ask participants at the end what their top takeaway was from the session – their golden nugget.

When I’ve been talking about the challenges of dealing with negative thoughts and impostor syndrome,  participants often share something along the lines of, “I had no idea other people felt like this – I thought it was just me! It’s such a relief to know I’m not alone.”

It’s as though they’re walking around with a radio channel in their head blaring out heavy metal (assuming you’re not a heavy metal fan) whereas they think everyone else has Radio 3 or Classic FM (preferably without the adverts) playing softly as their soundtrack.

Given we’re the only ones in our heads and bodies, how can we know what anyone else’s inner world is like and how can they guess what’s going in ours?

If you watch people going about their day, it’s like watching a swan – you see what’s on the surface, but not the furious paddling under the water.

The reality is that we’re all fighting our evolution.

Not only do we have an in-built negativity bias designed to keep us alive in a world of predators (the modern sabre-toothed tiger is a volatile boss or the risk of cocking up a presentation) but we also have what’s called a “novelty” bias, something our ancestors needed as they kept their eagle eyes out for resources as well as threats. Not surprising that our mind wanders 47% of the time.

It’s as though our mind is a wild horse which so often seems to carry us away with it and our job is to rein it in and not let it take us somewhere that doesn’t serve us.

If you’re struggling to manage your “wild horse” or want to change the radio channel you’re listening to, sign up for my free webinar, Manage your mind for success tomorrow Wednesday 30 September.

I’ll leave you with a final quote from author Remez Sasson : “Your mind is your instrument. Learn to be its master and not its slave.”

What do you think? Drop me a line at

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Alison Reid is an experienced executive coach who helps senior managers and directors lead with confidence and step-change their influence and impact. She works with them 1-1, empowering them to focus on what matters, communicate with impact and stay calm under pressure so they can lead themselves and others to great results. She's the author of Unleash Your Leadership : How to Worry Less and Achieve More. Download an extract or buy the book.

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