Feel Invisible? 3 Ways To Show Up

Christi Hegstad January 16th, 2014

I recently met with a coaching client who shared the following:

“When I speak in meetings, my ideas seem to go unheard – then someone else says the exact same thing, and ‘their’ idea is applauded. I struggle at networking events, too. In so many situations, I feel invisible.

Do you ever feel this way?

Would it surprise you to learn the person who shared this is a very charming and gregarious man, large in stature with a rather commanding physical presence?

The fact of the matter is, anyone can feel invisible – regardless of their size, volume of their voice, or physical presence. Some people, like the client mentioned above, feel unheard and unrecognized at work; others feel that way at home. 

And sometimes, if you’ve fallen off your own list of priorities, you may even feel invisible to yourself.

While the power of invisibility may be attractive at times (remember Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak?), in most situations feeling this way is anything but appealing. It can leave you questioning your worth and wondering if you matter. (You do, by the way.)

So, what are you going to do about it?

You have the power to make changes in this situation. Don’t think of it in terms of “how to not be ignored/invisible.” You were born to shine! Here are 3 tips to help you show up fully to do the work you were put here to do:

1. Believe in yourself and your ideas. Consider this scenario: you’re at an electronics shop ready to purchase a sound system, and the salesperson is saying things like, “Well, um, I think this would probably work, sort of.” If she doesn’t believe in the product, will she have any success selling it to you? You need the confidence in your ideas in order to “sell” them, which may require a mindset shift, coaching, and/or consistent daily actions that remind you of your value. 

2. Focus on your delivery. Do you tend to mumble or talk too fast? Do you worry so much about saying the right thing that you often don’t speak at all? Do you state your ideas in the form of a question or preface them with “I don’t know, but…”? Get support (public speaking course, Toastmasters, or a coach) to improve your ability to speak clearly and firmly.

3. Watch your nonverbals. Focus on holding a strong posture (even when sitting), making eye contact, and fully engaging in the discussion. You do yourself a disservice when you slouch, look away, or give the sense that you’re cowering. 

Remember, we teach others how to treat us. If you are tired of feeling invisible, now is the time for you to show up, play big, and do what you’re here to do!

What else could you do to show up and shine? Share your ideas below, on Facebook, or via Twitter!

Dr. Christi Hegstad helps you successfully do what you love! As President of MAP Professional Development Inc., she coaches leaders to get unstuck and reach Bold Goals with clarity, confidence, and meaningful action. 

Learn more at www.meaning-and-purpose.com and follow Dr. Christi on Facebook and Twitter.

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