by Stephanie Pollock | Featured Contributor
“I’m scared to put myself out there.”
This is one of the most common statements I hear from clients. They want the success, but yet the idea of fully exposing themselves to the world leaves them feeling a wee bit leery. So they continue to straddle success – one foot in, one foot out. And the deep, rich success that they want in their core continues to elude them.
There’s no doubt that really putting yourself out there can be nerve-wracking. It triggers a number of possible fears from, “What if they hate me?” to “What if they love me?” to “What if they don’t notice me at all?”
These are real fears. Because all of the above could happen.
Some people will hate you (or at least hit unsubscribe pretty damn fast).
Some people will love you (and want to share and buy everything you’ve got).
And some people will never know you exist.
But what’s the alternative?
If you’re here reading this, it’s because you were meant to do great things. And that requires you to put your brand out there and stake your claim in the marketplace. Nobody’s going to do that for you. You’ve got to put that other foot in – all the way in.
The minute you decide to go all in – things shift. Big time.
Your brand is meant to be seen and to be heard. Your right people need and want what you have to offer (but they have to know you exist first!).
So let’s break down some of these fears:
Big Brand Fear #1: What if I put myself out there and they hate me?
I’m big on bottom lines, so here’s mine for you. You will absolutely, unequivocally, encounter haters. And trolls. And just cranky-ass people who have nothing better to do than rain on your parade. I’ve had my share, and anyone else in the biz has had theirs too.
It sucks but it’s life. And the truth is, if you’ve got haters – then you’re building a brand of note. Because if you were vanilla, nobody would care (either way).
Think of the haters as your SO-not-right people. Don’t spend a minute focusing here. They’re not part of your tribe – and they’ll never open their wallets for you.
Know going in that if you step up to the plate, you’re going to experience some negative feedback. My way of dealing with it is always by asking two questions. “What of this is true?” and “What, if anything, can I learn?” And then I take what I need and leave the rest.
Big Brand Fear #2: What if they love me?
I know – seems like a crazy fear to have, right? But you’d be amazed at how many people are actually scared to death of success – even when they claim it to be their big dream.
What’s this about, really?
For many there’s a fear of keeping it up. What if you’re super successful and then everyone expects you to be magnificent all the time? What if you can’t sustain it? What if you let them down? What if they find out the REAL you and expose you for the imposter you are?
Chances are good, you’ve got a case of the Upper Limit Problem, originally coined by Gay Hendricks. The idea here is that we all have an internal thermostat for success. When we pass our set point, we tend to go into overwhelm and actually look for ways to sabotage our success. Think of the lottery ticket winners who go from $30,000 year to $50 million and within five years (or less) are back to $30,000 again with nothing to show for it.
Big Brand Fear #3: What if they don’t notice me?
When you’re first starting out, this is less about fear, and more about reality. It takes time to get noticed. Despite what you read, most big brands are not overnight success stories. They cultivated relationships and brand equity over time, through constant exposure, engagement and by providing tremendous value.
So, if you’re not ready to do the work and give it your all – then you’ll probably find yourself here – sitting alone at your computer, typing your latest blog post and posting it into the void, with only your mom and sister commenting.
This fear is real, but it’s something completely in your control. You want to get noticed? Do things to get noticed! Guest post, develop a social media strategy, speak for free, do a joint venture, host monthly Q & A calls with your community, create a podcast. Whatever it takes to develop your brand presence is what you need to do. It’ll take time – but it’s totally achievable.
Anyone can create a brand. That doesn’t take much these days.
But not everyone can build a brand that matters. A brand that resonates. A brand that has a big impact.
And if that kind of brand is calling your name, then make sure you’re not letting any of these three brand fears stop you.
It’s not fun to play small. It’s not empowering to feel like you’re hiding out and giving the world only a small piece of the amazingness you know you have to offer.
It’s your time to step up and out and shine.
Photo credit: Mary Vican
Business activator + leadership coach Stephanie Pollock is the founder of Stephanie Pollock Media Inc, a company devoted to helping talented women in business GO PRO with their dreams, stepping into the spotlights — and revenue streams — they so richly deserve.
She’s the publisher of Going Pro Magazine, and author of the forthcoming book: Claiming Greatness – How to Stop Hovering Around Your Potential and Actively CLAIM it! She’s been recognized as a Top 40 Under 40 changemaker and has been profiled and spotlighted in national media. She’s completed an elite Leadership Training program, coached hundreds of women entrepreneurs, and received kudos from the Governor General for her business prowess.
Stephanie has a timely reminder for half-hearted entrepreneurs: hobbyists rarely make history. To truly create your own economy — with an irresistible brand + ideal clients for miles — you’ve got to give your dream the respect + commitment it deserves, face your greatness . . . and CLAIM it.
With her signature Primed for Profits business activation program, e-courses and 1-on-1 Going PRO Power Sessions for emerging industry leaders — Stephanie is proving that business success has nothing to do with where you live, what you’re selling, or what your résumé says you’re qualified to create — it’s about the mindsets you hold, and the choices you make.