The Anatomy of Invisibility
I was four years old, sitting at the dinner table, tears rolling down my cheeks, my face wretched. Distressed by the cutting exchange of terse words. Feeling their anguish as if it were my own. As if I had no skin.
Then their frustrations turned on me: ‘Cry baby’. Mortified, I wished for the ground to open and swallow me. How could I disappear, become invisible?
Mostly I had my head stuck in a book, even as my siblings whirled noisily around me. My mother told me I had the gift of invisibility. I didn’t join any groups as a child - no Brownies, no Guides, no after-school clubs, no extra-curricular lessons.
I kept my head down and built my wall of quiet reserve.
For decades I avoided scenarios that would put me in front of groups. I didn’t share how I felt even with my closest friends. I’d built my wall well.
And if I did have to step in front of people - do some teaching, presentations, speaking - I was filled with gut-wrenching anxiety, sleepless nights, tossing and turning with terror and fear.
Eventually my yearning to make a difference got more painful than my fear. I learned to overcome my visibility blocks and step out of the shadows.
There have been so many breakthroughs on this journey, but there’s one moment I’d love to share with you.
My mouth was dry. My pulse raced. My stomach lurched. Deep breath. Here goes. I stepped forward in front of the audience in a bright sunlit hall and began to speak.
The poem I spoke felt like a coat that didn’t fit. It was thrilling, but made for someone else. Someone tall, larger-than-life, sensual. I was small, shy, cerebral.
As I stretched into it, I noticed my body come alive - my hips sways, my arms extended, my head held high. My voice grew louder, deeper.
I saw the audience mirror me, their eyes light up, their smiles widening. Their bodies swayed with mine as I stretched into new language.
I’m a woman
Weeks later, I stepped into a hot sticky room in front of 5 people. I claimed my space and aced the interview. Finally. My first CEO role.
For someone who never felt like a leader, I transformed that organisation, leading a team of 100, implementing my vision, and impacting tens of thousands of lives. I mentored others into their visibility and leadership.
This was such a huge identity shift for me. Beyond what I ever felt was possible.
Later when I launched my business as a visibility coach, I built my new website in a week! Now, I love having a full international coaching practice, helping amazing people to shine their visionary work in the world.
I’ve faced many fears and cleared many blocks - rejection, not being good enough, perfectionism, not feeling safe, terrified of what others think.
Visibility blocks are hard to break free from - because they are mostly invisible!
And because they’re deeply embedded in our identity; our unconscious beliefs about who we are and what’s possible for us.
These patterns seem to just happen to us. We don’t feel in control of how they are operating.
It’s hard to see how we hold them in place ourselves through our own ways of being.
So it’s incredibly empowering to see clearly how we’re maintaining these patterns. Then we can create and embody a new story.
If you find sharing your gifts, services or authentic views online or in person scary, exposing or overwhelming ...
Or you experience procrastination, distraction, playing small or avoiding putting yourself forward ...
even though you have a deep yearning to follow your calling and make a difference ...
I invite you to watch this video where you will:
- Understand the visibility block of I’m Invisible - how it shows up for you and how you reinforce your old stories.
- Discover the gifts that often come with this belief.
- Get clear on the skills and new ways of being that break up this old story for you.
This was delivered live inside my free Visibility for Visionary Leaders Facebook group. Click here to join the conversation and access our weekly live trainings.
Want to go even deeper?
Hop on a free, no-obligation call with me to get clarity on your next steps. Book in for a free Visibility Breakthrough Session here.