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I glanced at the number of registered attendees for the nth time. Excitement filled me as I thought about my webinar.
But behind my excitements were fear and self-doubt. What if no one shows up? What if someone rude will leave a nasty comment? What if I forget everything that I was going to teach?
It was my first solo webinar. I’m used to doing webinars but I always had a partner. This is the first where I’m going to talk from start to finish without the help of a partner.
I almost asked my friend, Ann, to co-host the webinar with me. But deep inside I knew, I had to do it alone. And perhaps that’s why she didn’t offer to help. She knew I had to grow and get out of my comfort zone.
The time to start the webinar came. I greeted the attendees and looked at my notes. Nervous and afraid, I started my talk and shared my knowledge with my eager audience.
More and more people were joining, but I couldn’t stop talking. These are people who want to listen to what I was going to share. I couldn’t fail them.
This is just one instance where I had to face my fear. Of all my experiences, I’ve realized that…
Fear and self-doubt will always be there
If you’re trying to make a change in your life or trying to create something valuable, you will always have fear and self-doubt.
Fear isn’t always bad. Fear is our brain’s way of protecting us from harm. When you try something new, fear warns you of the danger ahead.
Fear can also point you to where you should go. Because your brain is trying to keep you safe, it will try to stop you from getting out of your comfort zone. And that is a sign that you’re challenging yourself to take risks. Something an average person doesn’t want to do.
Self-doubt will always be there, too. If you choose to let it. There will be times when no matter how much success you’ll achieve, you would still doubt yourself and your capabilities. That’s okay. As long as you don’t forget the purpose of why you do the things that you do.
Don’t feed fear and self-doubt by choosing to live with them.
Do it afraid
You might have heard this advice a lot of times already. It’s worth repeating because it’s true.
It’s okay to be afraid. Acknowledge your fears and do it anyway.
I’m grateful Ann didn’t offer to co-host the webinar with me. She knew I had to do it alone.
There are lots of things in life where you must do it afraid because you’ll have no other choice. If you wait for fear to leave, you’ll never be able to achieve great things.
Being brave doesn’t mean banishing your fears. Being brave means you look at fear in the eye and just do it. Until you do it, you can never prove to yourself that you can actually do it.
Unless you want to get haunted by the question, “What if?” you must be brave.
It’s not about you
It’s about helping other people.
Remove the spotlight from yourself. Learn to shine it to other people. Learn to approach things out of service to other people, to help them. When you have the helping mindset, it becomes easier to make decisions because you’re not doing this for yourself alone but to genuinely help other people.
During the webinar, I thought about how to serve my audience. If they were willing to give me more than an hour of their life, I better give them a great presentation.
I made sure I delivered awesome content, and that they got a lot of value from it. Because it’s not about me, it’s about them.
It’s about serving the people who need your help.
Learn to silence your inner critic
Most of the time, our insecurities stand in the way of helping other people.
I never like hearing myself speak. During the webinar, I was imagining what my voice sounded like. Does the audience find it funny? Do they think my accent is ridiculous?
But like I said above, it’s not about me. I had to silence my inner critic and insecurities because the webinar isn’t about me being the superstar of the show. But it’s about how I can help others.
You’re not alone
Don’t rely on your own strength. You don’t have to.
At times when I want to give up when I’m afraid, I recite this verse:
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:13
I know all these sounds easier said than done. But you can do this. Whatever it is you want to accomplish, take a leap of faith.
You can overcome your fears.
Embrace your greatness. Be bold. Be brave.