I have a confession…
Fear has been kicking my butt.
Have you ever wanted to do something in your business… take your business to the next level, but something is holding you back? You’re afraid and it seems silly, because it may not even be something that big. But, it’s not silly because fear is real.
This is a more personal and vulnerable post than I normally share, but I hope it helps you level up in your business.
John Wayne is quoted as saying,
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
*Leaning through fear resources for you at bottom, so be sure to check those out!
I was the “horse girl” in high school so I can relate to that quote. I paid for my first car by giving horseback riding lessons. I have been on some “unruly” horses and know that saddling up often takes courage.
I don’t know if you have noticed, but the site here at Immensely Social has been changing. I’ve been working with a freelance mentor this month to put my freelance blogging services front and center.
You see, I typically work through platforms like UpWork, because that is where I feel safe. And while UpWork can be a great platform and there is nothing wrong with using it, I knew that I needed to reach and help more people with my services.
This has involved revamping the site. During the process Immensely Social went from this lovely blog site to a site with chaotic and unfinished pages that looked like a hot mess. I knew it was part of the transition and it would turn out better in the end, but as I let go of my hard work (all the time I had spent figuring out WordPress, Plugins, and all that Jazz to get it to look a certain way), I started freaking out.
Warning, it’s about to get vulnerable…
One day I was even in tears over it ya’ll. There I was, a fully grown adult, that has been freelancing for over 3 years, crying over a website.
But, it all came down to fear. Fear of change, fear of losing blog readers that I worked so hard to reach, fear of failing, fear of being successful and upping my game.
The site transformation has involved facing this fear at every step:
- Changing the homepage
- Re-writing my about page
- Making the blog play an important, but smaller part
- Creating service packages and a Work With Me Page
- Adding links to other pages in the sidebar of the blog to again highlight my services
- Creating a client process and the really scary part…
- A contract!
It has involved facing that all this time, that I have been freelancing, I have been playing small for fear of going bigger. With the support of my mentor group, I have tackled each step and great things are happening.There is still a lot to do, like tweaking copy and creating welcome packages. But, it will forever be a work in progress and that’s ok.
During this process UpWork added me to their exclusive Top Rated program and I have received a badge on my profile. This has already led to several new clients and I couldn’t be more thankful. Thanks to the guidance of my mentor, and taking action in spite of fear, I’m now getting new clients via the site and social media too. None of this would have happened, if I had let the fear hold me back!
Plus life is better. My business is more professional and organized. I even created a Google Forms doc with questions I can send every client to keep us from going back and forth through email.
I have always been committed to great work for my clients, but now I’m learning how to value myself- by charging what the work is worth and streamlining the process to save my precious time.
What are you afraid to do? What are you afraid to create?
Do you feel silly for being afraid of little tasks and changes?
Don’t, because there is always a bigger, underlying issue. And usually, it is this “I’m not good enough.” You are good enough and it’s time to kick those feelings to the curb.
Here are some things that helped me break through and continue to do so…
Ways To Lean Into & Through Fear
Find a Mentor
Having a mentor or group of mentors, who are on a similar path and can keep you accountable, is key. Mine came in the form of a Facebook group. We created accountability posts each step of the way, asked for suggestions, edited, and kept working.
Find someone or a group that you can share with. A group that will be supportive, but also let you know if they think you’re on the wrong track. We get so attached to our businesses sometimes that it can be hard to be objective. Feedback, honest feedback, is crucial.
Write It Out
Sometimes it is beneficial to see why you are afraid. So, ask yourself on a piece of paper, “Why am I holding back or procrastinating about this?”
Then, write the answers and keep writing them until you get to the true core. Don’t just put “I’m afraid.” Keep going until you see what is truly holding you back, the deepest “why.”
Doing it anyway in spite of your fear. Sometimes you just have to make yourself start and gain momentum as you go. The longer you wait the more time fear has to take its toll. When I received suggestions from my mentor and group, I worked to implement them as soon as possible. The longer you sit on it, the more afraid you will become.
In the book The Magic of Thinking Big (*my amazon affiliate link if you want to purchase), David Schwartz says that there is a 2-Step Procedure to Cure Fear:
- Isolate your fear. (We did this in the Write It Out step. Pin it down and determine exactly what you are afraid of- ridicule, what others will think, that you cannot handle success, etc)
- Take Action. There is some kind of action you can take for every fear. Take action promptly, Be decisive.
…action cures fear. Indecision, postponement, on the other hand, fertilize fear.
When we face tough problems, we stay mired in the mud until we take action. Hope is a start. But hope needs action to win victories.
How have you been holding yourself and your business back? What action do you plan to take? Let me hear about it in the comments!
[bctt tweet=”Leaning into and through fear is a lifelong process. Be patient with yourself. Love yourself through it.”]
Resources To Help Your Journey:
Leah Kalamakis, founder of The Freelance To Freedom Project has helped me tremendously in the process. You can check out her work and tips here Freelance to Freedom Project
Free Breakthrough Fear Worksheet. I created this for you as a download with the action steps above to help you get moving through fear. Download Here
Books you may want to check out via my affiliate partner Amazon:
Daring Greatly, Brene Brown (One of my all-time favorites!)
Playing Big, Tara Mohr (On my “To-Read” list)