Do you sometimes question your abilities? Why do we compare ourselves when we have so many gifts of our own? How can we move through the imposter syndrome and flourish as our own true selves?
In this podcast episode, Whitney Owens speaks about how to stop comparing and start living and why you should let go of imposter syndrome.
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In This Podcast
- Why them and not me?
- You are an authority even if you don’t always feel it
Why them and not me?
The lure of comparison is there for everyone, no matter how well-established they may be, no matter the height of their work successes, everyone falls prey to wanting more, or to be as good as they think the next person is.
Everyone has their role to play and it’s important that we, instead of comparing ourselves to everyone else, we actually enjoy what God has given us. (Whitney Owens)
However, this is not to say that we should remain content with where we are at and never try for future dreams or goals. The point is that you should never try to be somebody else.
As I have things laid in front of me, I have to stop and think ‘okay, is this me trying to someone I’m not, or this is an opportunity that God’s trying to put before me that I need to pay attention to?’ (Whitney Owens)
You are an authority even if you don’t always feel it
I think as leaders … we feel that imposter syndrome, like ‘I’m not capable, why did God call me to this?’ It’s important that you still step out in that and that’s actually what creates humility, and we know humility is such an important characteristic in a leader. (Whitney Owens)
Spend your time focusing on what God has placed before you and flourish in the way that only you can as you move on your journey through life.
If you focus on everyone else, you will try to be them and miss out on the gifts and blessings that God has placed into your life.
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Meet Whitney Owens
Whitney is a licensed professional counselor and owns a growing group practice in Savannah, Georgia. Along with a wealth of experience managing a practice, she also has an extensive history working in a variety of clinical and religious settings, allowing her to specialize in consulting for faith-based practices and those wanting to connect with religious organizations.
Knowing the pains and difficulties surrounding building a private practice, she started this podcast to help clinicians start, grow, and scale a faith-based practice. She has learned how to start and grow a successful practice that adheres to her own faith and values. And as a private practice consultant, she has helped many clinicians do the same.
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Welcome to the Faith in Practice podcast. I’m your host Whitney Owens recording live from Savannah, Georgia. I’m a licensed professional counselor, group practice owner, and a private practice consultant. Each week through personal stories or amazing interviews, I will help you learn how to start, grow, and scale your private practice from a faith-based perspective. And I will show you how to have an awesome faith-based practice without being cheesy or fake. You too can have a successful practice, make lots of money and be true to yourself.
On today’s episode of the Faith in Practice podcast, we’re going to do things a little differently. This is going to be a solo show, but also a little bit more on the spiritual side than where I usually go. You know, a lot of times I share with you about business techniques, I integrate faith appropriately in that process, but then occasionally I like to jump on and do a show about our faith more so than our business. In this past week I was reading my Bible and came across a passage that spoke to me personally. And so sometimes that’s the best way to speak to audiences; is to kind of share your personal story and hope that God uses that material to be able to speak to others. So just as a disclaimer, this episode’s a little bit more on the faith side than on the business side, but I think all things are good in that because we need both to be able to be great practice owners.
So I am doing the read through a Bible in a year. Yes, it’s kind of been tough, got to admit, getting through Leviticus, during a pandemic is no easy business. But I was able to push through and get a bunch of reading done actually over this past weekend and that was when I was reading here, this story that’s located in Numbers. Now this is the point where Moses is outland to the desert with the Israelites wandering around and a few chapters prior to this one, I’m actually going to talk about number 16 today, but a few chapters prior actually Moses, his siblings Aaron and Miriam confront him just about his authority and who gave him this authority and what is he really doing? And we hear this throughout the passages where the Israelites were questioning Moses. Actually in the part where Aaron and Miriam are questioning him, Miriam ends up getting a form of leprosy for what she did and is outside the tent. I think it was seven days and then it clears up.
So, but then this next part, there are some other people that come and confront Moses and these are Levites. So those are the priesthood of the Israelites. This person’s name is Korah and he has some friends here as well, Dathan and Abiram, I’m not going to try to say those names again and I’m just going to hope that I said them right the first time, but these are the Levites here. And so here in this passage, Korah and his friends come up to Moses and they ask this question, and this is here in, I think it’s verse three. Yes. Okay. “You have gone far enough.” This is what they’re saying to Moses. “You’ve gone far enough for all the congregation are Holy, every one of them and the Lord is in their midst. So why do you exalt yourselves over the assembly of the Lord?” When Moses heard this, he fell face down and then he spoke to Korah. Now this kind of spoke out to me. So Korah and his friends are mad, really jealous, because Moses gets to be the leader and obviously they’re not happy with his leadership and maybe they’re thinking, “I can do a much better job than what he’s doing right here.”
Now, how many of you can say I have had that thought? Most of us have. I often have those kinds of thoughts. And I find myself comparing myself to other people. If you are listening to this podcast, you’re probably a well-established practice owner, or are you wanting to start a practice, you have a group practice, and so you’re a go-getter. Most go-getters are always thinking about the next steps, but oftentimes we’re looking at the world around us and we think about more that we could be doing, or, “Why is that person successful in their practice and I’m not?” Or, “Why is it that they get to do this cool consulting or lead these amazing groups or speak at this event and not me?” And I can tell you, even though I’m doing consulting and I’ve spoken at events, I have lots of times that I think that, or I want to get selected for this other thing.
Like there is always more that we are trying to obtain, but at the same time, and even Moses basically speaks to this later in the chapter Korah and his friends were the Levites. Like they were set aside, special, they got to wear cool clothes, they got the tie, they didn’t have to go work their land the same way everyone else did. Like they were already in the top percent of the Israelites. They got all this attention yet at the same time, they are complaining that they don’t have enough or they don’t get enough authority. And it just made me think about myself and maybe you as practice owners that we often are looking at what everyone else is doing, or we don’t pay attention to what God’s actually doing in our own practice in our own lives and thinking about how grateful we are for where we’re at.
And to tell you the honest truth, we know this, that everyone has a role to play. And if everyone was a Levite, then this camp wouldn’t have sustained. The Israelites wouldn’t have sustained. And so everyone kind of has their role to play. And it’s important that we, instead of comparing ourselves to everyone else, we actually enjoy what God has given us. Now, this is not to say that we give up and we just stay content. Like, you know, I’m the last person to tell you that. I do podcasts all the time, telling you to move forward in your practice and to work hard. But I also don’t want you comparing yourself to someone else or trying to be someone else simply because they seem like they have it better. Or maybe you look at other people and you see the spirit of God in their life. And so you want to be them, and that’s not terrible that you want more of the Lord in your life, but God would never want you to try to be somebody else.
And I think these thoughts are so under the surface that we don’t even recognize that we’re having them and then they put us in this nasty mental place. And then we really just don’t do good work for what’s in front of us. And if we spend our lives trying to become somebody else or some other kind of job, we’re going to miss the very job that God has put before us. So you might be so concerned with doing things a certain way, that you miss another opportunity because you’re trying to look like someone else instead of looking like your unique self. We tell clients this all the time. So we need to believe if ourselves and I’m doing this podcast episode, because this spoke to me. And as I have things laid in front of me, I have to stop and think, “Okay, is this me trying to be someone I’m not? Or is this an opportunity that God’s trying to put before me that I need to pay attention to?”
And I think I talked about this in one of my other episodes that came out earlier. I think this was back in January on listening to God in your practice. Often we’ll do the little fleeces where I put out a little test, not that we need to be testing God all the time, but asking God for wisdom and direction. And this has happened multiple times of the past month, where I’ve had difficulties where I’ve had to say, “God, what do you want me to do next? Like, there’s so many opportunities. I don’t know which one to do or I’m so tired. How do I rest? Where do I rest? What do I give up that you want me to give up?” Or, “I just can’t take this anymore. I need you to do X, Y, and Z.” And then God just amazes me. And then sometimes the answers aren’t that easy. But with everything, pray through it, ask for God to show you the direction He wants you to take instead of doing what everyone else is doing.
Now, also want to speak here to this idea of you being the authority. That you of course, are in authority with your clients, you’re in authority with your family, with your friends at times, maybe you are a teacher at your church. And we, many of us know the story of Moses that back with The Burning Bush and God calling him into ministry, what was his response? Like, he was not happy about it. He didn’t want to do it. In fact, I think I heard a teaching, one said it’s like three or five different times, something like that and he came up with an excuse as to why he wasn’t fit to do this, or shouldn’t you send somebody else? And he even says, “I talked with a stutter.” Like he was so ill-equipped to do what he did, but God made him the very person He used.
I believe there’s some kind of message somewhere in the Bible or a passage that says that Moses was considered one of the most humble of God’s servants. So he knew he was ill-equipped, he stepped out anyway, over and over again. And I think as leaders, we also feel this. We feel that imposter syndrome, you know, like, “I’m not capable. Why did God call me to this? What in the world?” It’s important that you still step out in that. And that’s actually what creates humility. And we know humility is such an important characteristic in a leader. And so allowing God to be the one that equips you. And so even in this story, Moses is hurt. He is in pain, as he thinks about Korah and his friends and how they’re mad at Moses for having all this authority and who says that you can talk face to face with God and we can’t? Everyone’s Holy.
And Moses is shaking his head, like, “Gosh, I didn’t even ask for this. I love being with God, but I didn’t ask for this.” And they’re mad at him for it. And I’m sure as leaders, we feel that way too. Like when problems come up, “I didn’t ask for this. God called me to it and I couldn’t not do it. Like, this is the very thing I’m created for.” And you’re going to come up with people that aren’t happy about that. And so now you might be wondering, “Okay, so what ends up happening here in the passage?” And of course you can go read it and find out, but I will also tell you there’s stuff kind of, and I’m not going to get on into all the technical stuff here, but basically a testing time where they put some fire and do some incense and put those before the world and to see who God had called and who he hadn’t and then believe it or not later as many crazy things in the Old Testament that happened, the earth broke apart and ate them.
Yes. So Korah and his friends and family members, they ended up going down into the earth and dying. Like that’s crazy. I can’t imagine watching the world open up and eat somebody. And then by this, you shall know that the Lord has sent me to do all these deeds for this was not my doing right. This is not Moses saying, “This is not about what I want or me making you do something. This is what God is asking all of us to do. And you’re coming, not against me, but against God and what God has put in place.” So anyway, when Moses finished speaking the ground under them split open, and the earth opened its mouth and swallowed them in their households and all the men who belonged to Korah and their possessions. Wow. So that happened. And then everyone knew exactly who Moses was. Of course later, they’re going to question again, as many of us do, but I wanted to put this out because I want you to go back and read it. You know, it might be helpful to you, but things to consider here is who you are and what God’s called you to do that. That what you’ve been called to do is a unique and important thing.
So don’t compare yourself to everyone else and what they’re doing, but focus on what God has before you. If you spend your time focusing on what everyone else is doing, you’re going to try to be them and miss out on the very thing that God wants to do in your life. He’s got gifts and blessings right now in front of you. So I want you to focus on those, instead of all these other things.
I appreciate you taking the time to listen to this episode and for being a part of the Faith in Practice community. If you haven’t already, please go check out the Facebook page or the Facebook group. Really, it is a private group to help faith-based practice owners absolutely free just to have conversations. Like people post things about Bible passages or questions they have in their practice to be able to grow and learn from one another. So we’d love for you to be a part of that. And if this episode meant something to you, post about it on social media, share the podcast with your friends, go onto iTunes or whatever you listen to and rate and review the show. I want other people that are faith-based practice owners to hear about this because I want to be able to help them in their practice.
And also feel free to get in touch with me anytime firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for taking the time to listen to this episode.
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Thank you for listening to the Faith in Practice podcast. If you love this podcast, please rate and review on iTunes or your favorite podcast player. If you liked this episode and want to know more, check out the Practice of the Practice website. Also there, you can learn more about me, options for working together, such as individual and in group consulting, or just shoot me an email, email@example.com. We’d love to hear from you.
This podcast is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. This is given with the understanding that neither the host Practice of the Practice or the guests are providing legal, mental health, or other professional information. If you need a professional, you should find one.