Friday, August 13, 2010

Today Is a Great Day to be Fearless

Today Is a Great Day to be Fearless

How are you fearless? I was asked to answer this question today for a video profile being created for me as a part of Fearless Women Day

The fearlessness I described in my story had to do with placing my son for adoption. Before submitting my application for this award, I never really thought about the adoption plan as fearless. It was just me doing what I needed to do. I think that is how many of us face fear - we put it aside and do what we need to do. Sometimes, though, it's easy to let fear get the most of us.

A few years back, I read a great book by Linda Austin, What's Holding You Back? Eight Critical Choices for Women's Success. In it, she describes the reasons women tend to achieve less than their male counterparts - or take a lot longer to match men's achievements. The reason that stood out the most for me was women's tendency to fear taking risks. I'm paraphrasing here, but Austin says that men (first as boys) have an inherent willingness to try anything, whereas women often play it safe, put our toe in the water first, and then once we know all is well, jump in, albeit timidly.

Thing is, there's nothing much to be gained by jumping in when we know it's safe. Of course nothing bad will happen - but neither will anything extraordinary.

Playing it safe in our businesses is smart, though, isn't it? Only if you want to remain average. If you want to move on up to REMARKABLE, you've got to be willing to stir the pot a little bit. 

When it comes to setting goals, for example, do you set small goals you know you can achieve, or big hairy audacious goals (also affectionately known as B-HAG) that will take time, work, money, and energy ... things people tell you are impossible, or really, really, really difficult? Do you have a grand vision for the difference your business will make in the world, or figure since you're just one small person, you can't make much of an impact? Do you tell the whole world about your ideas - thereby making them concrete, and committing yourself to their completion - or do you keep them to yourself, because if you don't tell anyone, you won't look foolish if it doesn't work out?

It doesn't matter what your business is - whether you own a nail salon or a jetpack research lab - if you perch safely on the fence, keep your ass glued to the bench, or continue to settle for the status quo, your results will always be mediocre, and so will your success. 

You have an immense wellspring of creativity, vision, purpose, and grand thoughts within you. Perhaps you've never given yourself permission to dig down and really explore them. If you've been reading along, you know what's coming next ... SNAP OUT OF IT! Grant yourself that permission. Put on your creative wizard genius cap. Dream big. And be willing to take a risk to make that dream come true.

I promise to support your dream and vision. And I'm willing to bet, if you look around, there's a whole stable full of people who are willing to support you, too. Conquer the fear that's been holding you back. Today is a great day to be fearless!

Share your vision in the comments section so that we can all support each other!

This is Day 24 in the 60-Day Content Challenge. See you tomorrow for the next post!

Sign up today for Laura's next workshop, Want to Charge More? Start Writing! And let me know how I can support you in stepping out and becoming fearless.

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