For some months, I've been coaching various souls who want to establish a brand, set up a website and get known nationally -- and I've observed something remarkable.
Nearly everyone I work with needs some kind of permission to move forward and reach people on a bigger level. It appears there isn't a person out there who doesn't wrestle a bit with this issue, whether they're an experienced infopreneur or a coach just starting out.
Somehow the next 'place' they're going to ... perhaps a website with their name and brand, or maybe their own TV show ... seems just enough out of reach that my job becomes convincing them they can have it.
And that's not because these people lack any competence or qualification -- heavens no! I'm blessed with an absolutely amazing coaching clientele. It's simply because every one of us share some sort of natural inclination to stay small and hidden.
Part of us longs to preserve the status quo. We don't want to 'rock the boat' and set ourselves up for disappointment. Or, if we're women, we might have been raised to stay quiet and cultivate submissiveness. Others of us still have the disapproving (and scared) voice of Mom or Dad cautioning us from dreaming too big, or making too much noise. Many of us believe on some level we're not supposed to have everything we desire.
I struggled with this myself before the publication of my first self-help book, which I knew would change my life. I can still remember standing in the copy shop, simply trying to photocopy the final draft of my manuscript for my new publisher. Stray pages were flying all over the place; I was fumbling like mad. And I could palpably feel my fear.
And yet, six years later, I can safely say it all works out. Often, quite splendidly in ways you wouldn't expect. No matter what you're called to do on a bigger level, you've been given that mission for a reason -- because you ARE supposed to do it. Staying small and hidden is a sticky place of disappointment; one that will leave you wishing some day you'd done more with your life. Meanwhile, I am your personal cheerleader for the big and seemingly ridiculous. No, don't hide away; instead, take the leap and charge ahead. Your soul, and the rest of us, will almost certainly thank you later.
Do You Self Sabotage Your Dreams?
Take this questionnaire to see what you may be doing to undermine your own ability to get known on a bigger level.
1. When someone offers help you usually
a) answer no without even thinking
b) consider for a moment, but then decide their help would be inadequate
c) consider for a moment, but then decide it would be asking for too much
d) happily accept
2. Your level of organization is
a) catastrophic -- you can't even find your toothbrush at night
b) okay, except that when it comes to your dream you tend to keep everything on tiny slips of paper that get lost
c) not bad ... you organize everything. It's just that you don't act on it
d) fine -- you keep a running file or list of what you need to do on your dream projects every day
3. If someone gives you a key contact, you
a) tuck it away in a pocket with no intention of using it anytime soon
b) stick it in a safe place in your organizer or wallet, then lo.se it
c) put it on your desk where it sits untouched for the next four months
d) get in touch with that person within a few days
4. When opportunity knocks
a) you get a strange feeling in your gut and do nothing
b) you always manage to get sick
c) you seize the opportunity, but not until after several hours hair-tearing while you try to find necessary materials, the correct directions, a parking place, an open Fed Ex office, etc.
d) you open the door and let it in
5. The idea of being prepared, i.e. keeping an extra clean suit handy, having a charged cell phone, always keeping extra promotion materials on hand, seems
a) downright silly
b) like a good idea, but one you probably wouldn't do
c) smart, and you may even do one or two of these things
d) critical -- you even keep business cards in your gym bag
6. The idea that someday you will be successful enough to call your own shots seems
b) scary, but possible
c) likely ... if you could just get your act together somehow
7. When an important project begins to reach some kind of climax, you
a) withdrawal and let others finish it
b) begin to get pretty bloody sick of the whole thing, and start to complain loudly
c) start looking for the next thing to work on
d) hang in there for completion, taking care of the details, knowing the next thing will come along soon
a: You are committed to hanging out, which is fine, unless you've got that nagging feeling you should be doing something more. If so, you probably need a therapist or a life coach when you're ready to get serious.
b: Your fear is definitely getting in the way of what you want to do in life. You need to get an arsenal of support including a support group or support buddy, a coach, and plenty of meditation time.
c: You're grappling with the usual fear and doubts, but the problem is you're listening to them, even though you know the deal. Set up a regular support group and find a support buddy or coach who will bug you to get your work done every day.
d: You're doing the job the way it should be done. The only possible problem is burn-out, so be sure to schedule in the rest you need, and stimulating stuff to keep you perking along. A coach would be a wise investment towards seeing how far you could go.
Suzanne Falter-Barns helps anyone get known nationally by building a personal brand and putting it out there. You can access her free database of Suzanne's 50 Top Media and Publishing Contacts at www.getknownnow.com.
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