I believe that as human beings we all experience the same kinds of emotions and feelings, simply around different issues. When we talk about fear we all understand that emotion, but we don’t always understand or relate to how somebody else can be fearful of something that seems so natural or simple to us. It is because of this type of misunderstanding or judgment about my particular issue that I have spent a lifetime hiding in fear that someone, even my best friends and family members would find out and judge me.
You see, I was diagnosed with ADHD. Because my self-esteem was so low, I believed this diagnosis dictated certain failure. Somehow I was the only person on earth without any talents or gifts to share. My negative and very critical self-talk defined my existence. I was ugly, stupid, fat, undeserving and incapable of achieving any kind of recognition, accomplishments or successes. I deeply longed and secretly suffered for years for something fulfilling that I could achieve. I desired to make a positive difference in this world and also to grow with confidence in myself.
I would pray and ask why my life was so hard. I believe today that prayer has been answered, and the longing to make a difference is being fulfilled. While on my life coaching education journey, I decided to start telling my clients the very personal information of my ADD on our “get acquainted” call. I remember the fear and uncertainty the first time I picked up the phone to call a potential client. . All the questions in my head, like, what if they reject me or they say something cruel? What if they started telling everybody? What if they think I’m stupid? What if they tell me because of this that I’m not suitable to coach them? What if I am really all the negative stuff I always thought I was and this is a big fat joke? Oh my God! What will they think of me? The fear and angst was welling up and taking over!!
My heart was racing and my palms were sweating. In that moment, I had to do some serious self-coaching. I told myself no matter the response of the person on the other end of the phone. I know that I am capable and complete just as I am. After all, if I’m good enough for God to take the time to make, then I should be good enough for me. So I did it, I made the call. And as we spoke and became acquainted. I shared with them this extremely personal information. And guess what? The person on the other end of the phone did not reject me! They thanked me!! Can you believe it? They were very grateful that I stepped out of my fear and shared something personal that it instantly paved the way for a wonderful coach client relationship. From that day forward, I would have “The ADD” discussion with every new client. Not one of them has ever said a negative thing. In fact, everyone has been grateful.
Overcoming my fear of rejection and in the process learning self-acceptances is the” gift that keeps on giving”, and well worth the effort. I no longer see myself as broken and without gifts or talents. In fact it is quite the opposite. I now know that ADD comes with its challenges but it also comes with some fantastic gifts! It turns out that I do have something to offer the world, and have been making a positive difference after all! my longing to accomplish something that was deeply worthwhile not only for me but for others was impossible. My shame around this diagnosis was all in compensating. Well, now I’m sick of it!! I have come to understand through this wonderful journey and coaching that I am worthy, capable, full of potential and very creative.
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