- “Insecurity is the byproduct of thinking we're supposed to be perfect or execute something perfectly”
- If the expectation is that we're supposed to be perfect and extraordinary… and get it right all the time. And we're never supposed to miss with our moral compass and we're always supposed to act with ultimate integrity and essentially be a superhero, then insecurity is going to be present.
- “Don't worry about how anybody feels about you, because their perception and their opinion about you is going to change anyway.”
- If you’re looking for tips on how to manage insecurity and instead drive from confidence, this episode is for you.
- Watch the video to get the full training.
[The following is the full transcript of this episode of Joey’s Performance Tune Up With Joey Klein. Please note that this episode, like all episodes, features Joey speaking unscripted and unedited. This video is captured in one take.]
Hey there, Joey Klein here. Hope you're having an awesome day. We're going to take a minute and talk about insecurity, what drives it, what creates it, what to do about it, so that hopefully it's a little less present in your life and you can drive with a greater sense of confidence and empowerment in the things that you're doing.
And so if we pay attention to when we feel insecure, you're going to notice again, the mind is doing a few key things. The mind is most often, it's focused on other people's perception of you and you can't control the perception of others. And so we're going to feel highly insecure when we're trying to manage the perceptions of others through your own behavior. Meaning if we're thinking about people's judgments of us, their criticisms of us, and so we're thinking, who do I need to be or how do I need to act or how do I need to be so that they don't judge me, they don't criticize me, they don't think bad about me, they don't look down on me. That's going to be a difficult way to get through the day.
Trying to manage yourself through your idea of the perceptions of others is going to make you feel highly insecure, especially because at the end of the day, we all know that inherently there's people out there that just aren't going to like you. Like no matter what you do, even if you're an amazing human being and you accomplish extraordinary things, there's still going to be these humans out there and people out there that just decide they don't like you and they're going to judge you, they're going to criticize you.
And then on the other side, having nothing to do with you, there's individuals that are going to think what you're up to is great and they're going to appreciate you and they're going to give you accolades. And then if you've lived for any amount of time and you've been paying attention, those people that give you accolades and appreciate who you are, they hate you the next day.
And so people's opinions and perceptions of you, it's very fickle. It changes all the time. And so if you're trying to manage yourself in order to meet the perception and the expectations of other people, you're going to feel highly insecure. And that's going to be a tough way to get through the day because you're going to have to change yourself based on what you think people are thinking of you all the time. And that's just complicated to say, much less do, right? If I'm trying to change who I am and what I'm doing based on what I think other people are thinking of and about me, that's going to be crazy making because it's not even what they're thinking about you, it's what you're thinking they're thinking about you.
And so it's just you tying yourself in a knot and the byproduct of you tying yourself in a knot is called insecurity. So when you feel insecure, you've just got to stop and go, I'm tying myself in a knot here, and I'm trying to manage and show up the way I think people want me to show up, and that's going to be crazy making.
The other side of insecurity is your own expectations of yourself, your own perception of who you should be. And it's usually tied to a fear of failure. Man, what if I go out and I try to do this thing I want to do and I don't make it? I fail. What if I go out and I try to start a new company or I try a new role in my job or my career, or I'm going to go try a new hobby out? Insecurity shows up because we have this idea in our mind that we're supposed to already be good at stuff, which is very strange because we know the process of getting good at anything is to be bad at it at the beginning, right?
You got to be bad at something in order to get good at it. That's just the process. Nobody starts out good at anything. Nobody starts out excellent at anything. Like, plain and simple. The things that we get great at, we give ourselves permission to not know how to do it in the front end. And we show up and we opt in for the process, and hopefully we can learn to enjoy the journey of the process. The learning journey, the developmental journey, the growth journey, as opposed to creating an expectation that we're supposed to execute really well or a lot of people think they're supposed to be perfect and they create some idea of perfection.
And then insecurity is the byproduct of thinking we're supposed to be perfect or execute something perfectly because we know that that's unrealistic. Like, we're just never going to attain the thing called perfection as a human being, as who we are. We're never going to attain perfection in what we're wanting to do or build. Like if you're building a company or a business or you are executing in your career or you're married and you want to be a great partner to your significant other or your spouse or a great parent to your children or a great friend to somebody that you care about, you're never going to do any of that perfect. We're going to make mistakes. We're going to miss the mark. It's going to just happen.
And so if our expectation is that we're supposed to be perfect and we're supposed to be extraordinary and we're supposed to get it right all the time and we're never supposed to miss our moral compass and we're always supposed to act with ultimate integrity and essentially be a superhero, then we're going to drive with insecurity. Because there's a part of us that just knows we can't do that, and it's an impossible mark to hit and we're essentially going to fail. Okay? And so if we continue to position ourself inside of I'm supposed to be perfect and I'm never allowed to be bad at things and I'm not allowed to learn or make mistakes, then insecurity is going to be a big part of our life.
So instead of focusing on trying to meet the expectations of others, what I recommend you do instead is focus on who you want to strive to be for yourself. So instead of trying to meet the mark of other people and meet their expectations all the time and their perception of who you think they want you to be, ask yourself a more important question, which is, who do I want to be? How do I want to show up in my life? What is the energy I want to carry forward? What beliefs do I want to align with? Who do I want to be in the world? And who am I committed to do my best to being today and meet the expectation you have of yourself. Name the expectation of yourself and do your best to meet the expectation of yourself.
And at the end of the day, if you look at yourself in the mirror and you go, I feel great about who I was today, don't worry about what anybody thinks about you. Don't worry about how anybody feels about you, because their perception and their opinion about you is going to change anyway. Number one. And number two, their perception of you is informed by who they are with themselves. And so when somebody looks at you and makes a judgment of you or is critical of you, they're not actually judging you. They're not actually critical of you. They're critical and judgmental of themselves in some way. They have their own perception of reality that they're managing, and they just happen to be focused on you. They just happen to be paying attention to you. You just happen to be in front of them. If you weren't in front of them, they'd have the exact same judgments and criticisms about somebody else, right? Whoever else was in front of them. And so if we take you out of their life and out of the picture and we put somebody else there, they're going to think those exact same things about some other human being or some other person in their life.
Those judgments and those criticisms aren't dependent on you. They're not even about you. They just seem like they are sometimes because people happen to be focused in our general direction when they're sharing those things. Or again, a lot of times we're just thinking that's what they're thinking about us. It's not even what they're thinking. And so instead of trying to live up to the expectations and the standards that you think other people have of you, get clear on the standards and the expectations that you want to live up to for yourself. And just do your best on meeting those expectations, those outcomes, so that when you look at yourself in the mirror at the end of each day, you can go, do I feel great about who I was with my self today, who I was with other people today? And if you feel great about who you are and who you're being, you're awesome. You're good to go.
And in the event that you weren't who you wanted to be that day, don't beat yourself up. Don't condemn yourself. Just take a note, hey, that's who I was. Here's how I could do it better. And then don't look for perfection. Just do your best to grow a little bit the next day and continue that journey. Don't make your mark perfection because you're never going to meet that expectation. And so make sure that you're focusing on doing the best you can in the truest sense. My job today is to do the best I can in the areas I'm going to focus on I'm going to be the best human I can be today, and I'm going to miss that mark all the time, and I'm going to get back to just doing my best to be the best person I can be today. And then I'm going to miss the mark, and I'm going to focus on being the best version of myself I can be today and just be okay with that being the process and the journey, and engage it with confidence and with the gratitude that you're able to learn, change, grow and see yourself.
And then on the other side of the coin, remember, don't try to align yourself with the expectation of others, right? Don't try to align yourself with perfection. Don't try to try to be perfect in everything that you're doing, especially if it's something that you're trying to grow at. If you make perfection your goal or your standard, right, I'm supposed to play a perfect basketball game, or I'm supposed to be perfect at tennis, and I'm never supposed to make a mistake or miss a shot. I'm supposed to be perfect in business. I'm supposed to be perfect in investing my money. I'm supposed to never, ever lose money. That's going to create a lot of insecurity because you know you're going to miss that mark. And if you're going to punish yourself or if in the past you were punished for making mistakes and there's the fear of negative repercussion because you missed the mark again, that's going to drive a lot of insecurity.
And so instead of making your focus being perfect, make your focus learning and changing and growing and progressing toward the outcomes that you choose to achieve, both as who you want to become, but also apply that to the results. you're wanting to get in your life, outside of yourself with the people in your life and your business and your career and your goals and your aspirations and things of that nature. And so remember, focus, right? If you want to create confidence and a sense of empowerment and ultimately make the journey fun, focus on who you want to become and start moving toward that for yourself.
And understand you're going to miss the mark. And it's okay to miss the mark, but rather just see that you're going to learn through that process. And if you're making mistakes, you're growing, and you're going to be able to assess and evaluate and progress forward if you do that. And then second, when you're looking at the things you want to create outside of yourself, don't expect perfection from yourself, but expect yourself to simply stay consistent on the journey toward what you want to create. And as long as you're consistent, as long as you're continuing to move toward the aspiration of what you want to create and you're learning and you're growing along the way, then you're on track. You're hitting your mark. And perfection is not the mark, right?
Just a quick reminder, perfectionists tend to be masters of imperfection because they see imperfection everywhere they go. And so don't be a perfectionist, but rather be a master of growth, a master of development, a master of the evolution of yourself and your talents, and just make your goal assessing accurately and then getting a little better along the way. Assess accurately, get a little better along the way. And that's going to develop an extraordinary capacity within you, and that's going to translate to confidence, empowerment, and hopefully a lot of fun and joy on the journey.