I sit down to write a pitch email requesting to be a guest on Amy Porterfield’s podcast.
My leg shakes. I squirm in my chair. I wipe my sweaty hands on my jeans, get up, and pace around the office taking deep breaths.
My gremlins are out in full force.
What if she says no?
What if she says nothing?!
I’m not a big enough name to be on her show!
Will she even see the value I can provide to her audience?
What the heck should I even write in this email?
It’s been like this since January. That’s how long I’ve known that I want to ask to be on Amy’s show. (Maybe even longer, if I’m really honest.)
Can you relate to the anxiety that comes when you’re taking what could be a big step for your business?
It feels like there’s so much riding on this one action. And you want to do it right.
No, you want to do it perfectly. Because if it goes wrong, the whole world might just fall apart and leave your business doomed forever.
Or so we seem to convince ourselves…
Sharing the “Ugly” Side
When I first brainstormed this post idea, part of me wanted to share a story from years ago when I was just starting out, because it felt a little safer.
Maybe old stories are easier to tell because they don’t hurt so much anymore. Or maybe I want you to feel like things get easier and fears subside the longer you’re in business.
Honestly, fear and discomfort are the reality of running your own business. No matter how long you’ve been doing it, as long as your business is growing, your shit comes up.
Sure, pitching to Amy made me a squirmy, anxious, nervous wreck. But I still did it. I worked through the discomfort and sent that pitch email.
In some ways, I made it a million times harder than it needed to be (which I’ll get into in a second), but I also did a few things right.
That’s why, even though I’m embarrassed to tell this story, I’m still going to spill my guts about this recent uncomfortable “growth opportunity” so that you can learn from my experience.
My personal recommendation for you: Steal This! A 3-Step Plan for Putting Yourself Out There.
What I Did Wrong
When I first sat down to write my pitch to Amy, I suddenly had all these reasons that I was too busy.
The dog needs to go for a walk…
Oh! A notification just popped up on Facebook!
I have an idea for a new project I want to work on.
What’s the name of that new stationery store I want to check out?
You and I both know I was procrastinating because I was terrified.
Okay, procrastinating could be a huge understatement. It took me seven months to finally send that pitch. Seven months!
I procrastinated far longer than was necessary, and I let my crappy thinking get the best of me.
My mind made the discomfort (shaking, squirming, sweating) equate to a strong sign that I wasn’t good enough to be a guest on her show.
It was easy to believe that I needed to be more well-known, leverage my connections, or hit my first million-dollar year before I could declare that I had something valuable to share with her audience.
Oh, our minds are so good at bullshitting us!
But the truth is I do have some very valuable insights to share with her audience, so I needed to get over my own BS and take action.
My personal recommendation for you: The #1 List-Building Mistake That All Overthinkers Make.
What I Did Right
The good news is that I didn’t let those nagging thoughts win. I finally caught onto my procrastination and named it accurately: fear.
Once I was onto myself, I could do the only next step there was to do: Sit down and write the pitch.
At the same time, I didn’t ignore the discomfort and simply bulldoze through it without awareness. I’ve learned over the years that discomfort often shows up for me when I’m doing something new, pushing upward in my business (or life), and wanting to make something new happen.
Yes, the discomfort highlighted that it was new to pitch someone of Amy’s caliber, but it also highlighted that input from a pitch expert might be useful. So I asked for help. (Okay, I asked two people! Amanda and Debbie.)
With their expert advice, I wrote the pitch—still squirming but a tiny bit more confident—and hit “send.”
Discomfort Is Normal, But There’s a Catch
Hopefully you noticed that at no point did my discomfort completely disappear. It was with me all the way until I clicked “send” on my pitch email.
I hear your next question:
How do I know when discomfort is my intuition telling me something is off or when discomfort is simply coming up because I’m doing something new?
That, really, is the bigger question.
And the answer, thankfully, is pretty easy.
Stop Trying to Figure It All Out by Yourself
The best way to know if discomfort is a sign that something is off is, as you can guess from my story above, by getting feedback and input from an expert.
Experts—people who have a proven track record in their field—are the perfect sounding boards for us when we’re trying something new.
Even when something feels awkward and uncomfortable to us, they can easily see if we’re on or off track.
If we can’t sort it out on our own, or if we don’t trust our intuitive sense completely (which is really hard to do when we’re doing something for the first few times), getting an outside perspective can make all the difference between being stuck in fear and inaction, and moving forward.
This means it’s your job to find that expert, that sounding board, that outside perspective to help you see what needs to be done, make sure you’re doing it right, and keep you on track.
By the way, this is one of my favorite things to do for my clients.
My personal recommendation for you: Stop Playing It Safe: Why Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone Will Lead You to a Highly Successful Business.
Do You Need a Sounding Board?
I want to hear from you!
What areas in your business are you ready to take a leap but feel uncomfortable about it?
What questions do you have that are holding you back?
What expert do you currently turn to for an outside perspective? Or do you need someone?
Fill me in below, and let’s see if we can get you on track so you can move through the discomfort and take action!
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