Many of us get messages from the day we are born to be pleasing to everyone else. Messages like put others first, don’t think about yourself, make sure everyone likes you, be the support person in the background, don’t be too assertive, etc., etc. While there is certainly nothing wrong with being a pleasing, loving and nurturing human being, it is a problem when it becomes an unconscious compulsive habit that comes from cultural programming rather than conscious behavior that honors who we really are and what we really want and need.
I recently had a consultation call with Mary, a real estate broker. Mary consulted me because she was struggling to get more clients and close more home sales in her position as a relatively new broker. She was afraid she was not attracting the right buyers to her open houses. Mary explained that she knew the real estate market in San Francisco had peaked, and home prices would likely be going down in the coming few years. She worried about her clients having buyers remorse after purchasing a home with her. “After all”, she said, “what if they can barely afford their new house and then the market tanks? I will feel terrible. I need to make sure that the home is the right home for them to be buying.” Mary appeared to have a conflict about her need to be an successful real estate broker and the needs of her clients to buy the home that would be a good fit for their needs.
As I scanned Mary’s auric field I saw that she had a patch of white energy in front of her navel. This color configuration indicates the fear of abuse of power. This is not uncommon as most women are raised with many cultural taboos about comfortably owning our power and being successful. I explained to Mary, “this white I see in your stomach area tells me you might have a fear of abusing power. You have some idea about how power needs to be used in an ideal way. This makes you hesitate about using power at all because of your fear of abusing it.” Mary confirmed that that was very accurate. She would feel very guilty if she profited from a client buying a house they eventually could not afford.
The other color that was appearing in Mary’s field was a patch of dark red energy in her lower abdominal area. Dark red in this area indicates an inner conflict about desire and priorities. I told Mary, “this color indicates that your soul is wanting you to honor a desire that your cultural programming taught you was not ok. My sense is that it may be your desire to simply let yourself be successful in your business.” Mary affirmed that was true. She realized she had been caught in a pattern of over-conscientiousness.
As I talked further with Mary, it became obvious to her that she was being overly responsible for her clients choice. Different people have different values and needs. Mary could never possibly know all the factors at work in their clients personal and financial lives that were at play in their choice of their ideal home. Her clients were adults who were making a buying decision for themselves. They needed to decide for themselves what was appropriate for them. Mary realized she could certainly could guide her clients if she felt they were making an inappropriate choice, but ultimately it was up to them what home was most suitable. As a result of her insight, Mary felt more free, comfortable and confident in doing her job successfully as a real estate broker.
How to Stop Over-Conscientiousness From Blocking Your Success?
As women, many of us get cultural messages from the time we are born that encourage over-conscientiousness. We are trained to put the needs of others before our own needs. To think of our own needs first is considered selfish and is practically a cultural taboo. Obviously, we need to balance our own needs with the needs of others in order to be both happy and healthy. But many women tend to put others needs first to the detriment of themselves because of this cultural programming. This puts many women entrepreneurs into conflict with their own desire for empowerment and success: both are impossible if we are always thinking of others to the detriment of ourselves.
How do you know if you are over-conscientious? Here are a few clues:
1) You try to support the people around you and find that everyone else seems to be getting ahead but yourself.
2) You find it difficult to say no even when you know you should
3) You tend to worry about other people a lot.
4) You have have a tendency to feel guilty or over-responsible.
Like any emotionally driven self-sabotaging habit, the first step in over-coming over-conscientiousness is awareness. Just being aware of your over-giving tendency can go a long way to overcoming it and exchanging it for new healthier behaviors But if it feels very uncomfortable and difficult to start setting more appropriate boundaries for yourself– perhaps with a loved one or with clients–it is a sign you have an emotional energy block that needs to be released. The following exercise will help you release blocked energy in your power center so you can more easily balance your needs with the needs of others.
Here’s how to do it:
a. Think of the person or situation that makes you feel particularly over-conscientious.
b. Tune into the person (or situation) as a feeling in your body. Then tune into how the over-conscientiousness feels to you, particularly in your abdominal and stomach area, as sensation. Does it feel like fluttering, tension, heaviness, tightness, constriction?
c. Once you become aware of the sensation, ask yourself if you can let it go. Visualize opening a window or door in the location of the sensation and let the energy leave.
d. Continue to do this until you feel lighter and your mind becomes quiet. Notice what comes into your awareness.
I hope you found this blog post helpful. Have you ever struggled with over-conscientiousness? How did you overcome it? I would love to hear about it. Please leave your comments below. You may also want to read our post on How to Radiate the Authentic Confidence that Attracts Ideal Clients