2019 has so far been six months of totally new experiences, insights, transformations, and applications.
Over the Christmas break, a few things became clear to me. Firstly, I decided I was going to expand and broaden my business outside of networking. I wanted to be able to work both nationally and internationally while combining my love of travel, and I was limited by my current offering. Secondly, I wanted to bring my personal values in as my business values because my work is a huge part of my life and it was a way that I could live authentically. Thirdly, I figured out my expanded purpose – that I wanted to help others overcome fear and thrive.
I have four personal fear projects that I am at various stages of tackling: my networking journey which started eight years ago, public speaking, media, and video. Imagine this: just eight years ago I was terrified of strangers to the point where I would be stuck on the spot, avoid all eye contact, sweat, go blank, stumble over words, not sleep in fear of attending an event, and even go so far as to have panic attacks and black out. I can now proudly say that I truly love and enjoy networking. I have a passion for creating meaningful and authentic relationships and helping others do the same – actually getting them to enjoy meeting new people and making new contacts.
I fell into public speaking by default a few years ago. The more that people heard about the ‘Networking Queen’, the more I got asked to speak to community groups, conferences, team building and training days, and management meetings. After aggressively working at it for two years (the time it took me to get comfortable with networking) I have had moments on stage where I thought ‘Wow that feels amazing!’ but I’d like to get to the point where I love the whole presentation so I feel I'm 75% there. My one major goal for 2019 is to master my fear of public speaking.
I have to confess that I am very much at the beginning stages of working with media (radio, TV and print) and video. As with the previous two projects, I have an intense fear of doing them, but I force myself to give it a go and tackle it anyway. To date, I have undertaken a 30 minute live interview on community radio, a pre-recorded TV interview and podcast (which thankfully can be edited), and started producing one minute tip videos for my clients.
If I am to live truly according to my values – transparency, vulnerability, curiosity, authenticity, and empathy – I am prepared to make an absolute fool of myself in order to help just one person overcome and thrive. By expanding my offering to talking about my personal fear projects (networking being the first) and helping others work through their own fears, I’m able to broaden my audience worldwide and have a far wider impact. After all, everyone has fears they’d like to overcome!
If you’d like to follow along with my fear projects, you’ll find my adventures so far on my blog. Follow me on social media or check back in regularly to discover what I’m up to, along with tips and tricks to help you overcome your fears too.