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How to Overcome Fear and Put Yourself Out There As A Blogger
This post is coming at a really good time, because I'm preparing to start my YouTube channel and I have a little bit of fear and some limiting beliefs that go along with that.
One of the emails I send to every single person who signs up for my email list is my "what's holding you back" email. It's really important for me to understand where my readers are coming from and what's stopping them from making progress, and this email helps me get to the bottom of it.
The biggest thing my readers tell me is holding them back?
Fear and overwhelm.
Fear that they won't be successful.
Fear that their friends and family will judge their blog.
Fear that they will get mean comments on the internet.
Overwhelmed at where to start and what mistakes they should avoid.
If you haven't started your blog yet, or you have but you aren't “all in”, this post is for you.
I hope that I can give you the motivation and inspiration you need to dive in without holding yourself back or worrying about things that are out of your control.
This is the step-by-step process I go through anytime I feel too nervous or scared to do something, and I hope it will help you too!
1. Figure Out Exactly What You’re Afraid Of
The first step to getting past fear and overwhelm is to figure out which part is holding you back.
Why haven't you started your blog yet? Why haven't you put your real name out there yet? What is the worst thing you think will happen?
One thing I've noticed about human nature, in myself especially, is that we tend to have hidden fears that we have never even described before.
These fears are more like feelings in the back of our mind. We haven't put words to them, they aren't fully formed, but they are just enough to stop us from doing the things we really want to do.
One thing I've noticed for me is that when I stop and say these fears out loud, I realize that they make no sense.
I realize that the likelihood of those things happening is just incredibly low.
Have you put words to your fears yet? If you haven't, make that your first step!
2. What Will Your Life Look Like if You Don’t?
The second step to getting past your fears and limiting beliefs is to write down what your life will look like if you don't do the thing you really want to do.
This is a really important step, so I want you to actually take time to do it. Don't just nod your head and then move on to number three in this post! This one is a biggie.
Spend at least 5 or 10 minutes and write out exactly what a day in your life looks like when you don't accomplish this task.
How do you feel? Are you satisfied? How do you spend your time?
Performing this step has always been really useful to me, because it helps me realize that the pain of regret is always worse than the initial fear of doing something new.
For example, maybe you are scared to put your new blog out there into the blogosphere and really turn it into a business. After doing this exercise, you may find out that the anguish you feel everyday that you don't do it is a far worse feeling.
Maybe you are afraid to say something you really believe out of a fear of backlash from others online. But when you think about it, you realize that forcing yourself to be silent for the rest of your life is like chaining yourself to a stake.
The more vivid deal detail you can add to this exercise, the better.
Take the time to assess every feeling, emotion, and worry that you might experience if you don't follow through on your goal.
3. Remember That Bravery Is A Virtue
Bravery is being afraid of something and then doing it anyway because it's the right thing to do.
It's okay to be scared. It's okay to want to shy away from things. It's normal to not want to expose yourself too much to criticism and hurt.
Every entrepreneur goes through this, including the one that you look up to so much. But I always remind myself that the difference between successful, happy people and those who become bitter and whiny is that one was brave and proactive and the other wasn't.
The amazing thing about this life is that you get to decide which person you are. Nobody else on the planet can decide for you who you will become.
All of this is completely internal and within your control. Even if you didn't decide to be brave yesterday, you can make a new choice today.
You don't have to stay the same person for the rest of your life. You can decide at any moment to change for the better (or for worse, unfortunately) and now is as good of time as any.
4. Leverage Your Love For Others
Let me tell you a little secret hack I use when I am in dire straits…. Something I use when I'm really pushing back on something I know I should do and want to do, but I'm scared or nervous.
I use my love for others to propel me forward.
The biggest way I do this is by thinking of my child and any future children I will have, and really contemplating what would be best for them. Chances are that any goal I am working towards is going to be in their best interest, as well as mine.
If you're a mom, you know that there are a lot of things you won't do for yourself but that you would do absolutely anything for the well-being of your kids. Use this!
When I'm really, really stuck on something and can't get myself to act, I'll pull out what I call my "kid card". I'll ask myself what it will do for my children if I suck it up and meet this particular goal.
What will their life look like if I do it? How will I be a better mom if I do the right thing and go for it?
The second way I use this strategy is to think about the people in the world I would be helping if I met this particular goal.
Let's back up a minute because there’s something I want to make sure you know! And that is...
If you are running an honest business, you ARE helping people.
Marketing and business are not evil, and they are not wrong. I don't know about you, but I love that businesses exist and market to me!
In fact, I'm downright grateful for it. I'm grateful that my local grocery stores market delicious food to me. I'm grateful that clothing retailers market clothing to me that makes me feel great about myself.
I'm grateful that other bloggers market their products to me so that I can build a better business and make more money for my family.
We have to end this idea that business and selling is bad or shameful.
As long as you're being honest with your readers and selling products that are good, you are doing others a favor and making their lives easier. Do not ever feel ashamed for being in business!
So back to my main point.
You can leverage your love for others to help propel you forward in hard times.
How will meeting your goal or completing that project help others? How will you change their lives and help them succeed?
When you realize that the world will be a worse off place when you don't meet your full potential, you also realize that you are obligated to do it both for yourself, your family, and for others.
5. Reflect on People You've Admired in Your Life
My last tip if you are struggling with fear and overwhelm is to reflect on the people you have most admired in your life. These people may or may not be alive today, but they have certainly left a lasting impact on you.
What did you most admire about these people? What was it about their spirit and their behavior that inspired you the most? How would you like to be like them?
I think a lot about my great-grandma and my grandfather when I do this exercise. My great grandmother was such an incredible lady. She was wickedly funny, energetic, up for anything, and she never complained. Her life wasn't always easy, but she had a beautiful and generous spirit that couldn't be held back. I admire that about her and always hope I can be a little bit more like her.
My grandpa was the very definition of a good man. He worked very hard all of his life, and he was one of the nicest people you would ever meet. He was also very straightforward and no nonsense, and he didn't pander to himself or anyone else.
I've always admired how much he lived by his convictions and never expected the world to deliver anything to him. When I'm feeling sorry for myself and feeling like some things are unfair, I try to think of him and copy how he would have acted instead.
Feeling overwhelmed and scared is totally normal when you're doing something new like starting a business. It's a lot to take in!
These are the top 5 ways I help myself get past these feelings when I'm struggling:
- I figure out exactly what I'm afraid of.
- I write down what my life will look like if I don't dive in.
- I try to remember that bravery is a virtue.
- I leverage my love for others to get me moving.
- I reflect on the people I admire most in life.
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