Why in the world do so many brilliant, capable, educated women allow fear to hold them back? I totally understand the whole concept of fear – what I don’t understand is why we let it get in the way of living our dream life.
I speak to a lot of women solopreneurs over the course of each and every week. And I have learned that there are many areas in which we allow fear to dominate – fear of success, fear of money, fear of travel, fear of public speaking, fear of networking, fear of conflict – the list goes on and on.
“All the significant battles are waged within the self!” – Sheldon Kopp
In this article, I want to speak to the many categories of fear and offer some tips and strategies for moving forward. Without specific tools to conquer this ‘beast’, we pay a high price for living with the status quo.
“Overcoming fear requires that we show up to do the work we’re born to do.” – Shevaun Voisin
Let’s examine some of the more common areas of fear – and learn ways to step into that fear and grow to become bigger than what scares us. While these categories may be specific to areas of business, the tips and strategies are easily transferred into life, in general.
1. Fear of public speaking. Here’s my take on this. We so often hear, and read, that public speaking is the #1 fear in life. Who said so? And why do we buy into that ‘truth’? Each one of us speaks every day – to many people; so, we do know how to speak and we know how to speak in public. What’s the big deal about getting up on a stage in front of many of those same people? Nothing. It’s all about our negative self talk and our comfort zones – that’s what is holding us back – as well as buying into that common belief. How do we change beliefs? We change beliefs by the way we talk to ourselves – so change that inner voice and that tape that keeps playing over and over.
The pay-off: Public Speaking is an essential element to growing one’s business. When you have a passion and a purpose and a message – it is your moral responsibility to get out there and share that message. You cannot let fear hold you back. You do need systems and processes – a signature talk, contracts, an ‘offer’, and so on. Educate yourself! There are coaches and master mind groups that can help you with this. So do it! And get out there and start speaking.
2. Fear of success. This is much more common than we all think – especially for women! Women have been strongly conditioned to ‘care about what others think’. So, when it comes to being massively successful, that means that we must leave some people behind. That’s the way it is. Some people, as we grow and succeed, are not good for us. And for women, that’s a serious roadblock. We want to be liked. There are many other reasons, but I find this to be the ‘biggie’.
The pay-off: Being successful allows us to reach a larger audience with our life message and purpose. Being successful gets you in front of a different circle of influence. Being successful means living your life to its fullest potential – and doing the work you were born to do. Change your definition of ‘success’ and stay focused on the transformation you are creating in the world – write down the words that describe, exactly, why you do what you do. Focus on that!
3. Fear of Money. Ladies – I’m talking to you now! We were not brought up to know how to handle money effectively. As well, I hear this all the time: “I just want/need to make enough to cover my living expenses – that’s all that matters. I don’t need any more than that.” Give me a break! Where does that thinking come from?
The pay-off: With money, comes power and influence. When you have money, you have peace of mind – you’re able to do things, go places, influence people – and get things done! So, shift that thinking – and focus on making lots of money! Stop wasting useful head space, and energy, with a poverty mentality. Set a specific revenue goal for 2011 – write it down – stay focused on it – make it a ‘stretch’ and something you are excited about – then make it happen.
4. Fear of sales. Yes, that’s a big one for women solopreneurs – it’s right up there with marketing yourself and your services. Marketing is one thing but, quite frankly, without sales – you don’t even have a business – you have a hobby. When are you going to make a commitment to learn the fine art of sales, set some stretch financial goals and have a viable business. Sales is definitely a numbers game – and it is a learned skill.
The pay-off: a real business! Real customers! Real money! And most importantly – making an impact on the world. You must be selling all the time – you need to create a funnel for prospects, know your conversion rate, master the technique of closing the sale – and learn to upsell. That’s how you will grow your business.
5. Fear of not having any clients: …….and so what do you find yourself doing? Women solopreneurs will take on just any client – you actually need the client more than they need you. The sad part is that prospects can ‘smell this on you’! We fear not having any clients so we take on anyone with a pulse who will offer to give us money – or not. We then fear handling the conflict that almost always comes up with working with less than ideal clients. Then we fear having to fire that ‘pain in the butt’ client. It’s a vicious cycle.
The pay-off: You want to learn, right off the bat, who your ideal client is – and where can you find them. When you have a practice full of ideal clients, life begins to feel like heaven on earth. Your energy soars – you are making a difference in the world – your bank account builds -
In the current issue of MOTIVATED magazine, writer Gerald McGroarty shares 5 key success factors in overcoming FEAR. They are to identify your fears, visualize the outcome, crush it, look for/ask for support and celebrate.
FEAR is a four letter word that has no place in the life of a successful entrepreneur. It can cripple you – hold you back from following your dreams – it can stop you from making the difference in the world that you were born to do. Everyone experiences fear when it comes to new a situation – especially when we dare to dream big.
In the words of my mentor, Lou Tice: “It’s ok to be intimidated, but it’s not ok to stay intimidated”.
It IS all in your head. Take action today to identify where you are letting fear hold you back and, more importantly, take action to address those fears and get on with living your best life!
Where are you allowing fear to hold you back from living your best life?
Heralded as "The Queen of Networking," Pat Mussieux has x-ray vision for seeing relationship-building opportunities and the creativity to convert them into clients! Pat delivers high-impact, low-cost, customized mindset and marketing strategies for turbo-charging women entrepreneurs and small business owners to great profits.
After 15 years of training executives at companies like Stantec, The Westin Hotel, Sherritt International and other private sector organizations, she left the corporate world and put her skills to the test as an entrepreneur. Having stepped in and out of her business for the past 20 years, Pat contracted with a millionaire business coach in 2009 to help make quantum leaps in her business.
In just 1 short year, Pat created a six-figure home-based business after having moved across the country, leaving her 22-year marriage with virtually nothing - and starting life over in a new city across the country. She is an undisputed expert on mindset and marketing, and how to make BIG money doing what you love!
Pat is the author of "The 7-Step Guide To Growing Your Business by Building Confidence and Courage", teaching women entrepreneurs how to get their message out and enjoy massive results, removing the self-imposed barriers of habits, attitudes, beliefs and expectations! Recently, Pat was nominated for the 2010 RBC Canadian Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Through her coaching programs and products, Pat shows her clients how to experience freedom inside and out and create the life they truly want to live, now! It's a 'no-excuses' approach!
To begin experiencing Pat's coaching, you can enjoy some of her high content, easily applied mindset training products, at no charge, beginning right now at:
www.confidenceandcourage.com. You'll love Pat's high-content mindset and goal-setting training products to help you get past barriers and on to living your best life - at any age!