Updated: Jan 7
Trauma is not just abuse by way of physical or emotional damage. Trauma can also present itself in general and generational dysfunction. That perfectionist, over-achieving, no boundaries, over-compensating, afraid of missing out mentality can bleed into your business model without you even realizing it.
I know because I’ve been there. I struggle with insecurities that present itself in my business everyday. It started out with my struggle in pricing. No matter how often I googled: "the going rate for social media management", I couldn’t bring myself to charge that rate. I felt that I was in-experienced, under-qualified, and not good enough to compare to those rates.
The imposter-syndrome I faced each day allowed me to charge $150 per month for putting in 30+ hours of work. Insane right?
Clients were not only knocking my door down for business, but I was also working non-stop trying to prove my worth to them and not leaving enough room for my family and more importantly for myself.
Business was booming but I was missing in the moments that mattered most.
Despite how good I or my team was doing, I felt it was not good enough. It needed to be perfect. I began putting in services that weren’t included in the quote. I’d answer my phone at 11:30pm when a client called with an emergency simply because I didn’t want to lose them. Was this my emergency? Was this my business or theirs? I had to get honest with myself and realize, I am operating out of trauma.
My inability to see my worth allowed me to be taken advantage of day in and day out. I needed the gratification of a satisfied client to feed my own ego and feed the insecurities within myself. I equated the success of my business to my own self-worth and that was not okay.
Don’t make this mistake. Get counseling.
Your business will thrive simply because you are good at what you do. You are creative. Your ideas and your ability to deliver speak volumes as to why they continue to hire you. Don’t sell yourself short because that man/woman thought you weren’t good enough. You are worth every penny in that proposal. (I'm talking to somebody right now) In fact, that number you’re cringing at right now… you are probably worth more.
True imposters don’t suffer from imposter syndrome.
More than likely, you are more gifted and more skilled than you realize and you are right to charge accordingly. Take some time today to consider your abilities as a writer, as a photographer, as a designer, or simply as a creative. Truly consider it. Share your skills and gifts with the world and heal from your trauma in the process. Be aware of your shortcomings as a business owner and be willing to heal from your trauma enough to ensure your business will thrive in the way that it should.
Frechic Burton-Austin is the Brand Strategist and co-owner of CoCreativeCle.com and sole owner of C7Branding.com, an award winning small business company specializing in digital business identity solutions. Frechic creates marketing and branding strategies that allow business owners to reach their ideal clients everyday.