My Blog

By Helen Jamieson

Just shrug and move on

15 October


I am sure many of you will be familiar with how much our experiences can hold us back in business. Perhaps our first business didn’t succeed, or we are mortified that a sales pitch went wrong, or we messed up trying to manage a member of staff, or badly negotiated a contract. Over our lives there will be thousands of instances where things didn’t turn out as we would have liked.

So what do you do when things go wrong? Are you one of life’s worriers? Perhaps you spend hours analysing and reanalysing what didn’t go quite right? Do you put your head in your hands and tell yourself you’re not really cut out for running your own business? Perhaps you phone a friend and tell them that you should have seen this coming and if only you had prepared better …

The list goes on and on of the ways in which we undermine ourselves and weaken our own businesses. I’ve read some research that suggests that is very much a ‘female’ thing, this tendency to go over the top with self criticism and unhelpful analysis.

But in business you have to shrug your shoulders and move on. Lesson learnt … now on to the next task or challenge.

But perhaps you are not sure how to do this? Well stand in front of a mirror and watch yourself as you consciously relax your shoulders. When your shoulders are fully relaxed just casually raise then immediately lower them – that’s a shrug! Often improved if you pout/push your lips forward at the same time to confirm that you are really not bothered by what has happened. Go on, give it a go!

So stop beating yourself up about what didn’t go right and start reminding yourself of what you did do right.

Stop overanalysing what you said and what they said, instead, wipe the whole conversation from your memory and vow to waste not a moment’s more energy on it.

Stop focussing on what might have been, but instead look forward and focus on what will be.

Any tips of your own for women who overthink things or who struggle to move on? Please do add a comment!


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