So, you’ve got a new job.
You’re leaving a comfort zone you may have been in for years, to take a leap into something new.
Of course it’s scary. You’ve got those ‘first day of a new school’ feels and impostor syndrome is at sky-high levels.
How can you handle this? How can you walk into your new place of work feeling a little more calm, cool, and confident?
Becky Hall, a life coach and leadership consultant, shares eight top tips.
Focus on all the stuff you bring to the table
It’s easy to get caught up in all the stuff you’re lacking – knowledge of the office politics, experience of protocols, a nice desk plant…
What if you focus on what you do have in your toolkit?
‘Write down your three top strengths and how useful they will be to the role you are starting. e.g. “I’m really efficient” or, “I’m really friendly and good at building relationships”,’ Becky tells Metro.co.uk. ‘Read them aloud to yourself so that you hear them and feel it resonate in your body.’
Remember you are enough
Becky says: ‘It’s not just what you do at work that makes an impact, but how you show up.
‘So remind yourself of positive personality traits that you have that others will see and appreciate in you.
‘You are enough – you have what’s required.’
Visualise it going well
‘Imagine it’s already gone well,’ Becky suggests. ‘In your mind’s eye see yourself walking out of work at the end of your first week having rocked it.
‘What does it feel like to imagine this? Hold on to that feeling and start the job knowing that you have already been successful in your imagination.’
Practise breathing exercises
Ground yourself when nerves become overwhelming.
‘Practise settling your nervous system by doing some regular deep breathing,’ Becky recommends. ‘Five deep breaths in and out to your abdomen, creates coherence in your body which keeps you fully in the present moment and re-sets any fear triggers.
‘When you start in a new place the feelings of fear can trigger our “fight, flight, freeze” response in our brains.
‘This is totally normal – it’s just our body trying to protect us. But it’s not that helpful if it happens just as we’re trying to make a good impression on our new boss or colleagues!
‘The way to bring ourselves back into a state of calm alertness is breathing, and if you’ve practiced doing this before you start, you know that you have the capacity to calm yourself when you need to.’
Make your body language big
Ever tried power posing?
Simply shifting your stance can make a huge difference.
Becky says: ‘Research suggests that when our body language is big and open, we are more confident than when its closed and protective.
‘Imagine you’re a superhero or popstar ready to take on the world. Not only does standing with your shoulders back, taking up space make you feel like a rockstar, but it will release lots of hormones like serotonin in your system that will help with your confidence.’
It’s okay not to know everything.
Becky advises: ‘Be curious about how things work and seek the advice of those who know.
‘Starting a new job can be scary because we want to belong and feel part of something.
‘Prepare some questions that you’ll ask different colleagues early on about how things work in the organization you’re joining. What are the ways in which people connect? What are the things to avoid?’
Take your ‘inner team’ with you
‘Think of all the people that have supported and cheered you in your life. Imagine them all standing behind you,’ says Becky. ‘You can even write their names down and put them in your back pocket on your first day. They’ve got your back and will remind you that you’re not alone.’
Remember that your scary new colleagues are just people
Don’t panic – your new workmates aren’t evil demons sent to catch you out for being rubbish.
‘Everyone at work is there to do their best and to you will soon be part of that,’ Becky reminds us. ‘Connect with people as early as you can – be open and friendly and remember that they chose to employ you, so will want the best for you.’
Becky Hall is an accredited life coach, leadership consultant and is the author of The Art of Enough
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