When I first started my coaching business almost eight years ago, I have to admit I was crazy scared. Even though I had been running a successful company for the past seven years with my husband, I had my fears and doubts about being as successful with this new branch to our company. Every entrepreneur has doubts and reservations, but what makes a successful one is the one that has the ability to not let the fear prevent him or her from pushing forward. Having been coaching entrepreneurs for the past eight years, I am seeing a trend of the types of fear that tend to hold people back, thus preventing growth and success.
Fear Of Change
I know what it is like to not want to change anything out of fear that something will not work, and thus cost you money. But change is inevitable. You have to roll with it. Let’s take technology for example. The world is moving at such a rapid pace, it is imperative that you move with it so you can remain competitive. Don’t let your website become stagnant and outdated. Invest in your technology infrastructure so it is easy to do business with your target market. Learn the best platform of social media so you can speak directly to your audience and form relationships. All of these things can be frightening. I have seen many a business not want to change their website or infrastructure because they are afraid of possible hiccups. Let me be clear – if you don’t stay up to date, your customers or clients will find someone that is.
Fear Of What Other People Think
This has happened to me multiple times over the years. Let’s take my website for example. I have never really been a fan of my website. I always put together what I thought was the “proper” business site that would attract my target market. Boy, was I wrong. I was stifling my creativity and my personality. And I did it repeatedly. I thought if I did what I wanted, I would scare off would-be clients. I was completely wrong. I finally stopped caring that I was going to upset someone and embraced what I teach my coaching clients: THE RED VELVET ROPE POLICY. RVR, in an extreme nutshell, means you only work with the clients that energize and inspire you, and motivate you to do your very best work. So I changed my website – from top to bottom. I put together a site that I feel will attract the people I am meant to serve. And I could not be more excited about. But it took guts. It took getting over the fear of what other people will think when they see my website for the first time. Some people may not like it at all – and that is OK! I am clearly not meant to work with them. AND THAT IS OK! You are never going to please absolutely everyone, so stop holding back something you are wanting to do out of that fear.
Fear Of Growth
This is a big stumbling block I see with business owners. They want to grow, but are afraid of what comes along with growth. With growth comes greater responsibility, new systems to learn, new employees, new processes and new challenges. It is easy to sit back and maintain the status quo – but that will never get you anywhere. My advice is that you assemble your very own “Business Dream Team.” If you are taking on growth, you need a team. Schedule appointments to talk with your banker, accountant, tech person, whomever you need, and formulate a plan to move forward. Most importantly – have someone hold you accountable to get it done. That is where I see most business owners mess up. They have big plans, know all the numbers, but get side tracked by life or FEAR and never accomplish their goal. Don’t let fear hold you back. If you need help, get help. You can do it.
I spent a lot of years being fearful and trust me – ain’t nobody got time for that! Embrace your fear head on. Maybe you will mess up. That is okay. At least you have learned what not to do. Don’t let your fear of what could happen – make nothing happen.
Recently I had the chance to go to a women’s networking group that on the surface looked like your typical networking event. Speaker, networking, luncheon, upcoming events – pretty much what you would normally expect. I think there is something special about these events in January. They make you feel more energized, ready to take on new challenges, and ready to start a new chapter. The speaker at this event did not disappoint. Her main theme was “What Are You Waiting For?”
As entrepreneurs, the end of the year or the beginning of the year is typically the time you re-evalutate what is working and what is not. You think of trying something new and you get excited about new prospects, or say good-bye to what didn’t quite work out the way that you wanted. If you are like me, you probably have a million ideas in your head about what to do next and can get what is commonly called “analyzation paralyzation.” I am completely guilty of this myself. I get caught up in which direction to take and end up taking way too long to make a decision.
The speaker at this event made this very point. She was in a meeting and listening to her counterparts brainstorm with the boss. They sat there shouting out ideas left and right. Some were not good, some were not so bad. She, however, had a great idea and was formulating this idea in her head so it would come out of her mouth just perfectly. After all, she didn’t want to sound like she didn’t know what she was talking about. Unfortunately, in the time it took for her to obsess and only speak up when she had it all worked out, another person in the room shouted out the idea. The rest of the room was impressed and amazed, even though this idea was not completely formulated the way it was in her mind, and the other person ran with it and got the glory.
It is time to take your glory. What are you waiting for?
Don’t wait for something to be perfect. When I was first learning how to use YouTube to market your business, I was petrified. I knew NOTHING of video. I was intimidated by the technology. But my fellow business coach and YouTube expert, Lou Bortone, gave me the best piece of business advice I still use with my clients today.
Done Is Better Than Perfect.
Stop waiting for every tiny little detail to be in place before you launch a new project or try something new. Obviously you don’t want to just throw something together and not do any research, or jump into something without making the proper time for it, but don’t wait so long! If you do, then you are right back to missing an opportunity to learn, engage, become an authority, or accomplish something great!
I took this personally and finally enrolled in some classes that I have been putting off because I thought “I don’t have the time.” Melarchy. It was fear. Fear of screwing it up. Well no more. Don’t be crippled by time. Time is the only thing we do have. Make the time to make yourself a better person. Make the time to put together that new set of videos or online class that will make you money. Each step you take gets you that much closer to becoming a better person AND making some money along the way. Knowledge is power, go get yours.
So to inspire you, I will share with you what I am doing. I have started doing more research on SEO and the power of WordPress by buying some much need eBooks and enrolling in classes. I have made it a goal for my company to increase our WordPress Maintenance services this year. What is your goal? What are you working on? Share it in the comments!