We entrepreneurs are like everyone else. We dream, we hope, we fear.
But while we build and grow our businesses on our hopes and dreams — and a lot of hard work — we don’t always look at our fears.
Usually there’s something powerful behind the things that scare us. And, more often than not, there’s something pretty good on the other side of what you’re avoiding because it feels too scary to do.
Take public speaking, for example. Most of us fear it and yet it can be one of the most empowering things we can do to grow a business. When you step out into the light and share your ideas with a group, magic things start to happen.
If you fear public speaking, ask yourself what that fear is really about. I’m willing to bet that the root of your fear is quite personal, but that it has to do with feelings of vulnerability.
Guess what? Most public speakers admit to feeling that kind of fear, but they learn to work with it. Why? Because what’s on the other side — connecting with people, helping others, and attracting new and wonderful clients — is so very worth it.
Being Vulnerable Is A Good Thing!
Want to know another secret? Being vulnerable is totally OK. It’s actually better than OK. Vulnerability is a core aspect of being authentic.
There’s an entire movement around authenticity in business that I believe was borne out of the large number of women creating meaningful businesses for themselves. When we remove the corporate mask and let ourselves be human, we’re naturally more approachable. People want to connect with us. They want to work with us. And they’re more forgiving when we’re not perfect — gasp! — because we’ve become someone they’ve grown to know, like and care about.
Want to know another great reason to open yourself up to vulnerability? Being authentic really is the place where no one can compete with you. When you let yourself be vulnerable — by being yourself — you’ll finally be able to stand out and shine.
How Is Fear Holding You Back?
Let’s face it. If we let fear get in our way, we wouldn’t ever try anything new. We wouldn’t have had our first day of school. We wouldn’t have interviewed for our first job. We might not have stepped onto a plane (let alone parachuted out of one!). We’d have stayed in our comfort zones, and never have felt the amazing rush of having conquered a fear.
Running a business is such a personal endeavour, there’s bound to be fear. It’s scary to not be in control, to not know what will work, and to be uncertain that people will get, like, or want what we’re trying to do for them. But we have to put ourselves out there if we want to live our purpose, which is one of the most compelling reasons women start a business in the first place.
So, ladies, here’s your homework. Make a list of the things you fear right now. Which of those fears is holding you back? What one small thing can you do this week to face that fear and take a brave step forward?
Make a plan to work up to your big fear one baby step at a time. Taking it step by step will slowly desensitize you to your big fear. Once you come face to face with it, you’ll feel fantastic and ready to take on the world. Make a plan to celebrate your big accomplishment — you deserve it!
Then get ready to approach the next big fear on your list!