Yesterday I had a major “wobble”.
I’m really moving out of my “comfort zone” and I can see that this is absolutely necessary so I can get nearer to the place I want to be in life. The problem for us all, of course, is that moving out of our comfort zones is, well, uncomfortable! Personally, I realised yesterday just how far out of my comfort zone I have to go when it comes to actually generating business out in the real world.
I have, during my entire life, never really faced these fears before even though I identified them many years ago – they have remained unresolved as I managed to “get by” and make a comfortable living as an employee in a field so narrow that I could avoid confronting these problem areas. Being self-employed means we really do have to face a whole range of fears head-on – there is no “corporate shield” to hide behind now! I know that only by practising those things I am afraid of will I lose the fear and “expand my comfort zone” – this much is accepted wisdom, but of course just knowing this does not make the process any less uncomfortable!
The thing is, when I face what I’m up against, it’s REALLY daunting – it seems that what I have to do to succeed in my new self-employed life is a bit like climbing a towering, vertical cliff without a rope! Yesterday it was as if I approached that cliff, looked up at it and wondered how on earth I was ever going to climb it. I made the mistake of looking at the whole daunting task instead of just working out where my next foothold is.
I think that’s something I need to remember. Looking at the whole task – like looking up at that massive cliff – just caused me to freeze and think I would never be able to do it. Finding the next foothold and planting my foot in it – almost a piece of cake! So what I did yesterday was to really break down the big actions on my list into “footholds” – baby steps that will take me a little bit outside my comfort zone – things that I can JUST DO without thinking about the whole daunting task of “generating business”. The key to these little steps, for me, is to define them clearly and in such as way that they are small enough for “doing” without any deep strategic thinking.
When I’ve taken one of these baby steps, I’m no longer stuck – I just made a little bit of PROGRESS and it feels nice. I may have only done a little thing, but at least I did it, and it’s another little step up that cliff!
If you have your own tips that you found useful when “facing the fear” in self-employment, please leave a comment!