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Looking Fear in the Face

December 1, 2011

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.” Eleanor Roosevelt (wise leader extraordinaire!)

What is the fear that you are ready to look in the face? What is the one thing that you think you cannot do? Name it. Until you name it you can feel stopped, frozen in place. Stuck.

Sometimes it’s a tough choice to step out of the familiar old patterns and into the new. Other times you just can’t wait to take the leap. What makes the difference? It comes down to who you put into the Wisdom Chair, that throne inside of you reserved for the voice that guides you. Who gets to sit there? Is it a voice from the past or a voice that is looking forward to the future? Your own personal naysayer, scared and clinging? Or your passionate, committed, go-for-it voice?

When you invest yourself in creating a new future, you become the author of your life – innovative, creative, hopeful and encouraged. The feeling is so different from acting out the same old story in cycles of resignation when you feel helpless, discouraged, and irritated.

In  tumultuous times like these lots of fears surface. Two of my consulting clients are investment firms. The roller coaster of the market creates opportunities for them to join their clients in a “freak out” or find solid ground and proceed. One of my clients works as Director in a nonprofit faced with diminishing income from their typical foundation grants. They have to leap into diversified funding streams. New territory.

What is the fear facing you today? What is the one thing that you think you cannot do? Name it. Befriend it. Then put your WiseCore into the Wisdom Chair and let her guide you into authoring your future. Just ask – what is my next step? Then take that one and the next and the next.

I just paused to name and face my own fear that I’ll never finish my book on women’s leadership. My naysayer has a powerful voice! But my WiseCore is a truthteller. She said, “write one hour tomorrow and one hour each day this weekend.” And I thought I needed to wait for a week of writing retreat in January! She’s so wise.

What’s your fear? And your next step? Together we can make it through.

Are you ready to commit your entire being to creating a new future, one of greater freedom and personal power? In the Next Octave Women’s Leadership Program, starting in January, a small group of women will join me and together we will strengthen our WiseCore.  Send me an email or give me a call! I’d love to tell you more.


2 Comments leave one →
  1. December 2, 2011 8:44 am

    The biggest game-changer for me was simply REALIZING I had a choice as to who to put in the “wisdom chair”. Most of my life, I assumed that my parents or other people of authority always knew best so the voice that trapped me in fear was theirs. When I realized that I was actually the expert on ME, that my own voice had so much more wisdom and potential to break down the barriers that I used to think I had to live behind, my whole life changed. The very first step towards that was taking the chance that I was worth investing in, and starting business coaching with you. I had no idea, at the time, what power lied in that decision. Now I do inspirational speaking to photographers and began an apparel company. If you would have told me in 2007 when I allowed the wrong leaders to tell me what I was capable of, what I’d be doing in 2010, I would have said you were OUT of your MIND! It’s pretty amazing.

    • December 4, 2011 7:22 am

      Beautifully said Julie. Once you chose, you moved! Powerfully, wisely, and of course, with pizazz. I love you. Karen

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