I don’t want this to be one of those namby posts spouting how facing your fears is the elixir for changing your life
I do wanna talk about how fear can sneak up on you, acting like it has your best interests at heart while it single-handedly destroys your ambitions.
It’s on my chest right now. Every time I type, in fact.
Every time I post a blog… sweat forms on my fingertips, threatening to drop as I hover over the publish button.
I know fear.
Fear had me debilitated, hiding under the covers not wanting to face the day.
My head spun and muscles ached. Literally sick from fear.
My body is sensitive like that. It won’t let me live a lie. The moment my emotions aren’t in check, I feel it in my bones. Warning signals hit nerve endings until I get the message:
Hey chica, how about you stop and look under the hood?
The truth is, as my business got bigger and opportunities poured in, I got scared.
It was time to take a closer look – this is what I realised:
Not all Fear is created equal, and a lot of the time, it’s asking a bigger question.
Fear can come as an adrenal-fuelled warning: “Run for the hills, there’s a lion approaching!”
Or as a sign of growth: “I’m trying this new thing and my heart’s racing!”
Or as an indication that your inner world’s leaning towards self-sabotage by playing out worst case scenarios: “What if it all goes wrong?” “What if I’m not good enough to do it?”
Or a sign that your ego is taking over: “What will other people think? What if I fail? What if they don’t like me?”
When fear strikes it’s asking us to take a deeper look, to pull back the layers to pinpoint what’s going right and what’s going wrong with our life and thinking.
Fear has many disguises, and when you run your own business, you face them head-on.
There’s no hiding from them.
Because when you’re building a brand, there’ll come a point when you have to put yourself out there. And nothing flicks the fear-switch quicker than the feeling of exposure.
We can’t help it.
When we feel like we’re being judged, we experience a host of emotions (hello, rejection!) that threatens our sense of survival.
We look to our family and friends for love, affection and often acceptance and validation.
And you know what challenges that?
Stepping out the closet to share who you are and what you believe in.
It is not easy.
But here’s the bullet: IT’S ESSENTIAL.
To step into your story, to fully own the glory of who you are and attract people you love working with, YOU HAVE TO PUT YOURSELF OUT THERE.
THAT’S exactly why I run the brand storytelling workshop… so folks can learn to do that in a way that feels natural and authentic. So they can find their story and OWN IT.
Fear is the culprit behind a lot of unwanted symptoms: Procrastination, playing small, confusion and ultimately, a business that doesn’t move.
So how do you know when fear’s holding you back? It sounds a lot like this:
“People will judge me if I post about…..”
“I don’t want to self-promote because people will think I’m….”
“What if people criticise me?”
“If I niche myself too much, I’ll lose potential customers”
“I don’t want to mix personal and professional”
“If I share my story, I’ll turn some people off”
“I don’t want people to know that…”
“If I say that some people might think I’m…
Sound familiar? Of course they do. They sound familiar to everyone.
And here’s the real kicker:
If YOU give in to these thoughts and play vanilla, you’ll stay vanilla. In a market with a million other vanillas guest where they leaves you? On the shelf, unnoticed. As fear’s play toy, selling yourself short.
To have a meaningful brand and succeed in business you have to be visible.
You have to be seen.
Because when you’re seen, people connect with you. And when connection happens, business happens.
Unlike 20 years ago when you could censor who you are, today you have to bring your WHOLE SELF to the table… in all your tainted glory.
What you fear the most might be the very thing you need.
So if you got some fear brewing I ask you:
Hey chica, how about you stop and look under the hood? What’s the bigger question?