“Once you become fearless, life becomes limitless.” ~unknown
I’ve been fortunate in the last several years to meet and work with some amazing, successful, seemingly fearless people.
They are people who have accomplished more in a few short years than most do in their entire lives.
When I look at others who have met and exceeded some of their biggest goals, who have taken giant leaps of faith in their business and personal life, who have overcome challenges with what appears to be ease, I am forced to look at commonalities between these achievers.
What makes one person more successful than another? Why do some seem to achieve greatness with ease?
The golden thread that I have noticed is that the people who continue to knock it out of the park all have one thing in common…
They never let fear get in the way of opportunity.
When you take a look at some of the most well-known achievers of our time, they have all faced failure, rejection and ultimately fears, but they never gave in to those feelings.
Walt Disney was fired from the Kansas City Star because his editor thought he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.”
Oprah Winfrey was fired from her first television job as an anchorwoman for getting “too emotionally invested” in her stories.
Steven Spielberg was rejected by the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts multiple times.
J.K. Rowling was a single mom living off of welfare before she began writing her first “Harry Potter” novel.
Thomas Edison’s teachers told him he was “too stupid to learn anything.”
The list of examples of famous achievers who faced rejection and failure goes on and on. But the reason they became famous… the reason that they are a big name in our world today is because they never quit.
The people who have faced the biggest hardships in life did not allow the fear of the next failure to consume them. They did not let the “what-if’s” stop them from reaching for their biggest dreams.
So how can you be the next Steven Spielberg or Oprah Winfrey? How can you reach your full potential and share your inherent gifts with the world?
The answer is simple.
Strive to overcome your fears. Take the steps necessary to not allow fear to get in the way of your opportunities.
Below is a list of 5 ways that you can work to overcome fear which will allow you to reach new levels of success in both your personal and professional lives.
“You are the one that possesses the key to your being. You carry the passport to your own happiness.” ~Diane Von Furstenberg
Think of a time that you have been really excited about something… I mean REALLY excited. Now think about who you shared that excitement with?
Were you faced with an equally high-level energy around what you shared? Or were you looked at like you were crazy?
Have you ever been told that you’re too much of a “dreamer?” That you weren’t being realistic? To get your head out of the clouds?
When you are faced with negative opinions of others you have to remember that another’s opinion has nothing to do with your own happiness. Someone else’s opinion has nothing to do with the path you should take for your own life.
This can be exceptionally challenging when the naysayer is a spouse, close friend or family member. It is hard to look at someone you love and care for and realize that they are trying to squash what sets your soul on fire.
One thing I can recommend to you is to keep trudging your own path. To stay focused on what you want and at some point, that loved one will either come around or they won’t.
It is not up to you to drag them along for the ride. You don’t have to get anyone’s permission to follow your dreams and to seek opportunities in your life.
There is a saying I heard the other day that stated, “Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business.” This is SO true!
When you are able to overcome the fear of what other people might think, you are setting yourself up to reach new levels of greatness that you never deemed possible.
It is then that you experience a freedom that allows you to pursue your definition of happiness.
“Don’t take ‘no’ for an answer, never submit to failure. Don’t be fobbed off with mere personal success or acceptance. You will make all kinds of mistakes, but as long as you are generous and true, and also fierce, you cannot hurt the world or events.” ~Winston Churchill
I have come to the realization in life that ‘no’ really means ‘not yet.’
In fact, when I was a teenager my father used to tell me that I should be an attorney when I’m older because I could negotiate or argue my way out of anything. In hindsight I’m not sure if that was a good or bad thing…
But in all seriousness, it is important to know that when you are pursuing what sets your soul on fire — when you are pursuing something meaningful and that gives you purpose to life — you are going to run into the occasional ‘no.’
I think back to the very first business coaching prospect that I sat in front of to give my proposal on how my program could help them. I was so nervous because it was my first big pitch and I wanted to deliver massive value to these people.
I wore my best suit, my lucky heels (come on ladies we all have a pair) and I had my talk down pat.
I walked in, sat down with them, and could immediately tell that one of the primary owners was super distracted with something other than what I was putting in front of him, running through his mind.
In just a few minutes I went from being confident that I was going to close my first big deal to feeling totally defeated before I’d even gone through my full proposal.
That was my first no.
I was so bummed at the outcome and while that moment in time could have completely squashed any hope I had for building a coaching business, I took a deep breath and decided that I needed to work my pitch different. I needed to control the environment and I needed to do a pre-screening that allowed me to gauge where all interested parties were at mentally in the desired growth of their business.
I wish I could say my second pitch went even better but it didn’t. I prepped again, re-grouped, and was met with another polite ‘no’.
But you know what? My third encounter was met with a yes… and so was my fourth… and fifth… and so on.
Do I still face ‘no’s’ on occasion? Absolutely!
But one thing I can say with total certainty is that I never let those no’s get in the way of what I want out of my business. I never let it get in the way of the dreams I have and the life I want for myself and my family.
You are going to hit roadblocks that make quitting seem a lot easier than continuing on the path to greatness.
When I reflect back on my life, I realized that every single ‘no’ I encountered — every single let down — happened for a purpose and it actually changed the trajectory of my life for the better. But in the midst of that let down, I definitely didn’t feel that way.
This makes me think of the saying that when God closes a door, he opens a window.
Regardless of your religious beliefs I think that comment rings true. Think about times in your life where you have been told ‘no’. When you have experienced disappointment and frustration. When you feel that the world is working against you.
Now think about what happened as a result of that difficult moment.
I don’t necessarily believe that everything happens for a reason but I do believe that you can find purpose in every encounter in life.
My challenge to you would be to think about the last time you were told ‘no’. Think about the last big disappointment that you faced. And now try to find the silver lining in that instance. Think about what that moment of disappointment did for you vs to you.
By embracing the ‘no’s and continuing to move forward despite those moments, you will minimize your fear of the next roadblock you will face.
“Once you become fearless. Life becomes limitless.” ~unknown
I totally believe in the idea that if you are not doing something every day that scares you, then you are not growing to your full potential.
There are many examples from my own life that I could give you that shows how pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone can create new opportunities that I never would have never dreamed of.
I have been blessed with the opportunity to speak on stages across the United States and while I always have the “pre-talk jitters”… I have never really had my nerves consume me.
Until I was granted the opportunity to do my first 10-minute talk at one of Joe Polish’s Genius Network meeting.
I had been part of the Genius Network program for about a year and through this, Joe allows you to submit a 10-minute talk proposal and how it will provide $250,000 worth of insight to the group of entrepreneurs who are all members of this exclusive group.
So here I was… fairly new to the group. I had just had my topic approved. And I had to make sure I delivered massive value to the people I had sat amongst and admired for how many months.
No pressure, right?!
Ya right… this was hands down the most nerve-wrecking talk I had ever given.
But you know what? Once I committed to it, one thing was certain. There was no way I was going to back out.
Once I commit to something I am committed. Whether it be in my professional career or in my personal life, if I commit, I’m going in 150%.
This would be my challenge to you — find something that forces you out of your comfort zone and has the potential to throttle you towards some of your biggest dreams — and then go for it!
Don’t look back and don’t hesitate. Just go for it.
I delivered my 10-minute talk at Genius Network in February 2017 and I will never forget when Joel Weldon, who is an amazing speaking coach that Genius Network gifts to you to help you prepare for your talk, told me that my talk was in the top 3 talks ever done up to that point at Genius Network.
WOW! That compliment alone from someone who I perceive to be one of the best speaking coaches in the world (and just an awesome guy) was worth every nerve that I encountered in preparing for and delivering that talk.
My point in this is to show you how stepping outside of your comfort zone and doing things that scare the living daylights out of you can truly change the trajectory of your life.
Remember — be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire!
“Becoming fearless isn’t the point. That’s impossible. It’s learning how to control your fear, and how to be free from it.” ~unknown
The dictionary definition of fear is this…
an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain, or a threat.
Think about this for a moment. Fear is fueled by what you believe to be true.
So, what if you focused on changing your mindset and controlling your perceptions? That has the power to change how fear impacts you.
If you are able to recognize within yourself what is truly defined as fear vs. what you perceive to be true, it will allow you pursue opportunities that you may have feared in the past.
Anytime I am about to speak on stage I focus on my breath and the value I am going to bring to the people in the audience.
If I were to focus on my fears instead of controlling my state, I would instead be worrying about how many people are in the audience, if I will trip on my way up, if I will forget my big power statements to drive my point home… and the list goes on.
Instead I choose to focus on what I can control, and the energy I am going to bring to the audience.
You are absolutely capable of conquering any fear you have by controlling what you perceive to be scary and instead focusing on the positive outcome.
“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” ~Anais Nin
When I was little, I thought I wanted to be a prima ballerina or a famous actress in Hollywood. I used to put on my own dating game shows for my mom and make up characters of the strapping men that she got to choose from. (Ok I can feel the judgement… but I was young and she was an awesome single mom so the least I could do was make her laugh!)
Today, I am neither a ballerina or an actress because as I grew so did my dreams, but one thing I can say is that I always have and always will have dreams that are so much bigger than myself.
As a 10-year-old girl I had no clue what it would take to get to Hollywood or get into Juilliard, but I didn’t care. I didn’t care because at that ripe young age it was my dream and the details weren’t important.
As adults we often lose that innocence and get in the way of our own dreams. We allow our doubts that linger in the back of our mind to take over and squash what we want most out of life. We allow fear to get in the way.
I remember as a kid my grandma telling me that one day, I was going to be President of the United States. She believed that in some way I was going to have a major impact on this world.
While as an adult I realize that I absolutely would never want that job because politics are just not for me…
But my point is that I have always had at least one person in my life at any given time that encouraged me to dream big. To go for something that is bigger than I can even imagine.
When you have someone that encourages you to dream big dreams — to chase what matters most to you — you are so much more likely to ignore the naysayers.
If you do not have anyone in your life that acts as that encouragement and helps you to realize your greatest potential, then my suggestion to you is to be that person for someone else.
Wayne M. Dyer said “The law of attraction is this: You don’t attract what you want. You attract what you are.”
If you want to level up your life, help someone else level up theirs.
If you want to realize one of your greatest dreams, help someone else realize theirs.
If you want to achieve a new level of success, help someone else achieve greater success.
Don’t ever allow any sort of excuse to get in the way of realizing your greatest dreams and reaching your greatest potential.
You are capable of more than you can even imagine and you need to stop being afraid of what could go wrong, so that you can experience all that will go right.
If you’d like to start living your dream focused life filled with gratitude and positivity, go here to get your free copy of Imagine. Act. Inspire., as seen on Amazon.com.
Featured photo courtesy of Michael Rosner-Hyman on Unsplash