I have been practicing a thing lately in Henriette Weber Inc: fear. Looking fear straight into its eyes. Corner it and telling myself; what are you afraid of? I have become great at identifying my fears and asking questions around it – where the most action-packed question I can ask myself is: how can I turn this into something I am not afraid of any more?
Let me give you an example. Last week I was in a meeting with a potential client that I want to work with. I am in a place where I don’t take new freelance work in, but this client would be close to a con-amore project, so I would totally make room for it in my calendar. Our values align, I think they’re awesome – but not that digitally-savvy, yet. Even though, I do a good job of communicating technically hard-to-understand issues to people who haven’t been introduced to them before. I have a metaphor for every issue that could be hard to understand to have people understand it better. However, I just didn’t feel like I was coming across properly. I did my best, but I left the meeting feeling kind of down because I know my message, and the reason they should hire me, hadn’t come across clearly. Now, normally I would have been hitting myself in the head for a day or two because I hadn’t done a great job. I probably wouldn’t be the one running their brand strategy and turning them into the most admirable company in their field. But this time I opened my notebook and wrote down ‘to-do: plan more basic content around my work for newbies’. I turned the fear of being misunderstood into an actionable to-do that I am already working around.
After my illness, and having looked the worst of fear in the eyes and lived with it every day (yes, the fear of dying far too soon). I’ve changed my looks on fear. I could go into the wildest of details, but believe me, having battled a life-threatening illness will make you change your views on pretty much anything. You have to hope for the best and celebrate the small things you can do today that you haven’t been able to do yesterday. For me, every full breath of air was a winning-streak. I have gotten a brand new perspective on how I run my business and how I make my money. And I have promised to treat my bad-ass self better and more lovingly. Getting myself caught in being misunderstood is not something I want to be afraid of anymore. It will be something I create new cool initiatives around to prevent.
If you turn your fear into actionable items then it will become manageable. If you turn your fear into something, where you have a ton of backup, then at some point it’s not fear anymore. That’s how you’re managing fear in your business.