Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)

fear monster

6 Ways to Demolish Your Fear and Build a Better Business

Trying new things is always a challenge.  If you already have a blog, and it’s not working for you, change will be required.

Oh yeah, you better believe it.  Even if it’s initially uncomfortable for you, change is the name of the game.

In my last post, Blogging Nightmares and Other Horror Stories, I wrote about my initial foray into the world of internet marketing in 2006.

I joined an affiliate program that required me to generate leads. Only one problem with that – I had no idea how to generate leads online.   It gets worse – I was also required to call the leads. Yikes – that’s what I call the double whammy.

I knew I would learn how to generate the leads soon enough.  But call them on the phone?  How about NO?  The sad truth was that I had a morbid fear of the phone.

So great was my fear that even for a simple matter, I would rather jump in the car and travel halfway across town to see someone, than pick up the phone.  The phone was like a lead brick.  I’d rather chew razor blades than pick up that damn phone.

But this time, it was different.  Rather than succumb I finally confronted my fear after years of excuse making.  Did I score a breakthrough because of a revelation from God?  Or perhaps I read an inspirational story from Tony Robbins.  Nope.  The primary reason I made the decision was this: desperation.  So desperate that I would virtually do anything to make a buck.

(Well, virtually anything – I draw the line at wearing a tutu at a gay mardi gras.)

So I picked up the phone and started dialing for dollars.  And here I am ten years later.  A full on marketer who leverages the internet to make a buck.

And I still phone leads.  How many? Well, I stopped counting after I’d called 10,000 of those suckers (I don’t mean the people I called were suckers – it’s just a figure of speech, right?)

Two things stand out with this story:

One is that growth always requires change and change invariably induces fear.   Previously I didn’t need to overcome my fear of the phone.  Back then I was working with local people so I could always hop in the car and make a visit.

But when I confronted the reality of that affiliate program, which was about generating leads all over the country, I had no option – I had to embrace a different way to do business.  And confront my fear.

So what’s this got to do with your business?

Well, I guess you want to grow your business.  You want to take it to the next level, right?

As indicated, growth requires change and change is not always comfortable.  It can even be painful.

Here is what Anthony Robbins says about pain:

‘People seek to experience pleasure and avoid pain.’

That’s how we’re wired.  But the problem is that if we spend our lives in pain avoidance mode, we can never grow personally which of course will prevent us from growing our business.

Susan Jeffers Book – Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

Feel the Fear and do it anyway

Before I continue, I want to give mention to a book I read years ago.  It’s a book that helped me confront the phone fear thing but also another fear of mine – public speaking.

The book is titled Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, by Susan Jeffers.

Not long after I read it I received an invite to speak at a seminar, and lo and behold I accepted (previously I rejected all public speaking requests).  So I had a breakthrough, and that book was one of the catalysts for the change.

This post is not about the Jeffers book, but seeing as the theme is about overcoming fear, I reckon it’s worth mentioning.  Grab yourself a copy. (And no, I do not get a commission – I just think you should get it because it will help.)

6 Ways to Demolish Your Fear

A while ago I wrote a post on my other blog titled 7 Ways to Overcome Fear of the Phone.

This post is not about a topic as specific as ‘fear as the phone’, but I think the techniques I share can be modified and applied to any fear-based situation.  Try these for size:

1. Know Thyself

In my last blog post, I shared some entrepreneurial strategies for bloggers.  And I know that many would feel uncomfortable about some of the featured ideas.   The fear of moving outside our comfort zone is very real.

Why do you have a fear of doing new things?  Dig deep, see if you can uncover the reasons for the fear.  Reasons could include:

  • Fear of Failure
  • Fear of Success
  • Fear of Being Ridiculed
  • Fear of Rejection
  • Fear of Change

The bottom line is this: you need to pinpoint the underlying problem first – before you can move forward.

2. Voice It

When you are clear about the underlying fear you need to write it down.  Then write a few paragraphs describing why you have the feelings and what you propose to do about it. Something magical happens when you put pen to paper – trust me!

3.  Give Potency to Your Goals

You need to keep yourself inspired and motivated.  One of the things I did was to create a collage of pictures that represented my goals, and paste it on the wall.  Photos of cars and travel destinations helped keep me motivated and focused.  You’ve got to trick your brain to do what you want.

4. Revisit the Fear

Dr. Lisa Thompson writes about this technique in a blog post she wrote a couple of months ago.  It sounds a bit weird, but the idea is that you kind of roleplay a typical scenario in your mind.  Imagine the fear in all its unadulterated glory.  Then imagine yourself smiling and accepting the setback with good grace, and even humor.  Give it a try.

5. Create a Vacuum

Have you heard of the Prosperity Law of Vacuum?  It works like this: create a space for the good you desire.  If you have clutter in your life, use your latest setback as an opportunity to get your house in order.  Clutter can include relationships that have passed their use-by date, too many non-essential activities (e.g., wasting time on Facebook), and physical items you don’t use anymore.  Get rid of them!  ‘Cleaning house’ is like a mental and physical spring clean, which you should do before you reboot.

6. Let Go and Let God

Motivational speaker, Bob Proctor, used to say that we need to ‘let go and let God.’  And it’s true. We must have faith.  Trust the process – you must believe that your next successful experience is just around the corner. Do you believe it? Good.  You have now been released from worry, angst and doubt!  That’s what faith is all about isn’t it?

Failing forward? Yep – failure is not a dirty word.  So keep your gaze firmly fixed on the future, not the past.

Success leaves clues, and this tip is a BIG one!

The Wrap Up

Whether you’re a blogger or run a traditional business, there will be times when you should press on so you can move your business to the next level.  I accept that you (probably) feel uncomfortable when faced with the prospect of change.  But without positive change, the goal will not be achieved.

I hope you take on board the above tips, and I look forward to hearing feedback on your results.

Your Turn – Time to Comment!

What was your biggest takeout from this post?

After reading this post are there any ideas that you will now embrace?

Make a comment below!

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24 thoughts on “Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)

  1. Hi Kim,

    Great topic for a blog post. Your experience is what a few people go through. It either makes or breaks them.

    I think it comes down to confidence.

    I was in a similar position to yours back in the 80s. Unlike you, I bottled it. Because I wasn’t
    confident in my ability.

    But more than that, I was afraid of succeeding: What if I got people saying “Yes” and then I’d have to go and meet them face-to-face and do my sales speech. What if I made sales!

    Now, I’m more confident and willing to succeed. Funnily enough, although you call your 6 tips “Ways to Demolish Fear”, I call them “Ways To Doing What You Want”.

    Thanks Kim.

    – Tom
    Tom Southern recently posted…6 Little Talked About (and Possibly Controversial) Reasons Why Your Traffic Conversion Rate SucksMy Profile

    1. Hey thanks Tom

      Interesting to read a little of your story, at least in regards to fear management.

      You mention fear of success, and I reckon there have been times when I had the same impulses. Maybe it relates to feelings of unworthiness. Fortunately, I ultimately put most of those feelings behind me. Looks like you’ve done the same thing, Tom!

      Kim Willis recently posted…Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)My Profile

  2. Hi Kim,
    What an awesome post.
    Change can and does impact all of us in different ways and for many of us it also brings out some hidden fears.

    I recall my initial fear of making sales calls when I first joined the financial services industry. Despite my confidence in my knowledge and my ability to help people solve their problems, the thing that bothered me was rejection.

    That “rejection thing” was a huge hurdle for me to overcome and for some time I hid that fear from everyone including myself. I could come up with the most credible excuses for not making the calls but thats all they were – excuses.

    When I finally realized I was just fooling myself and accepted the fact that to survive in my new role required me to acknowlege my fear of rejection then changes happened quickly.

    And yes I actually wrote down this fear and shared it with my sales team. Having the intestinal fortitude to finally be able to share this fear actually solved the problem practically overnight.

    Many thanks for sharing these important elements in our business life Kim

    Best wishes from the remote Thai village marketer

    Peter Beckenham recently posted…Your First Blog Post – Make It CountMy Profile

    1. Hi Peter

      First a confession. That post was accidentally published. I hadn’t finessed it so apologies for the rough and ready format. Fixed now!

      But anyway, rejection has been a big thing for me. I don’t handle it well. That’s one of the reasons I like to generate inbound leads from people who at least have some kind of an interest in my topic or product/service/biz opp. i still get the rejection but it’s not quite as brutal when compared to cold calling.

      Its great to read how you overcame your fear. The ‘write it down’ technique works wonders for our confidence and resolve. Often times after I write out the key points associated with a problem (including some action steps), I’ll immediately spring into action. It works a treat.

      Thanks for dropping by, Peter

      Kim Willis recently posted…Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)My Profile

  3. Hey Kim,
    you’re in the wrong business my friend, you should be inspiring people with this knowledge you have. All those things you mentioned resonate with me. It’s funny because I have been doing it for my whole life naturally. You know, the stuff about re-visit it in your thoughts and see yourself smiling about it.

    I am a big believer in your thought counts first and if we think about things that will help to soothe us about what we fear in a different light, then we can make progress.

    I think the you could put it all in one big basket and say “let’s not give a s#it what everyone thinks anymore!” I think that is the cause of what most people fear’s are about- Great post loved reading it….I love the life stuff…..delicious-Jennifer
    Jennifer Giacoppo recently posted…“Abundance is the gold within you”My Profile

    1. Hey Jennifer

      Thanks for your kind words.

      Knowing how much you value mindset and Law of Attraction ideas I thought you’d like some of the ideas in this post. Too often people like me focus just on the nuts and bolts – the how-to’s of marketing and blogging etc. But the reality is that most of us have blockages and all the how-to’s in the world won’t amount to a hill o’ beans if our internal settings aren’t optimised.

      Great to have you here again, Jennifer

      Kim Willis recently posted…Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)My Profile

  4. Hi Kim,

    I think it’s a very good thing to face our fears if we want to get rid of them. Most people try to ignore and deny their fears, or even run away from them, but that’s the best way to never get rid of them. And it works with anything negative, not just fears.

    Most fears are subconscious, so by writing them down, looking at them in the face and even talking to them, those are the best ways to make fears vanish.

    Great points.

    Sylviane Nuccio recently posted…Are Blog Posts Useless Self-Promoting Content?My Profile

  5. Thanks for sharing six extremely helpful tips Kim!

    And thanks for sharing Susan Jeffers book, because it definitely
    sounds like she has some extremely helpful information worth being exposed to!

    I love your straight forward advice in tips #’s 3,4 and 5.

    And while all six of your extremely practical tips, are helpful, for me personally those
    three previously named, definitely get down to the heart of it for me.

    You mentioned (at one point), having a fear of pro-actively using your phone
    to prospect, unfortunately there are an equal number of aspiring online bloggers,
    who have the exact same phobia, of consistently writing blog post, and or
    creating (short) on camera videos!

    Hopefully the sharing of your excellent post, will help some of them find the
    confidence they need, to finally move forward!

    1. Hi Mark

      Thanks for your kind comments

      Yes, folks have lots of fears. Mine was always fear of the phone and fear of public speaking

      I beat those suckers

      You’re right about fear of appearing in front of a camera. A lot of marketers tell me it really scares them, and often I have a hard time convincing them they should do it. Fear is a scary thing!

      I have a friend who was terrified of dogs. Everyday, she would go for walks with me and when we passed a dog she would freeze. After putting up with her behaviour for a few weeks I told her she couldn’t come with me anymore if she didn’t confront her fear. The good news is that she did – with my help – and dogs no longer have dominion over her life.

      All good

      Thanks Mark

      Kim Willis recently posted…Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)My Profile

  6. Awesome post Kim, I know the feeling of being afraid to talk to people over the phone. I’m still scared to talk to people over Skype but I’m getting a bit more confident. I don’t really like talking with complete strangers on Skype, still, it’s something I have to used to.

    I recently did a Skype call with one client I have been writing articles for awhile and he had a really awesome opportunity for me. I would have missed that opportunity if I was to scared to talk to him on Skype.

    Great article as always!
    Timothy Gagnon recently posted…How to Get More Followers Twitter: 7 Ways to Dominate TwitterMy Profile

  7. Hi Kim,

    I’m rolling with laughter because I too had the exact same fear of that phone. was like a brick and I too would rather chew on razor blades in the past. But you did it! So did I.

    Fear is a monster! But once we “know thyself” and acknowledge the fear, it is the first step. We have to push through it, like becoming re-born in a way. If not, we are stagnant and it can even lead to subconscious guilt which is another story.

    If all else fails…”Let go and let God” as you put it so well. If we have the ability to do that, everything will fall into place. Sometimes we feel insignificant, but if we do believe in God or a higher force…just put it out there.

    Worked for me!

    Thanks for such great advice….I will share this around.

    Donna Merrill recently posted…Getting To The Next LevelMy Profile

    1. Hi Donna,

      Wow – what a coincidence! We both had the same ‘issue’ with those pesky ringy dingy devices. It is crazy how fear can manifest and – in a way – rule our lives. Another one of my fears is fear of heights. It’s a fear that I don’t think I’ll ever overcome for the simple reason that it’s no big deal if I don’t. But phone fear and public speaking fear – well they were adversely impacting on my ability to do business. So a change had to happen.

      Thanks Donna

      Kim Willis recently posted…Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?)My Profile

  8. Hey Kim,

    I remember being told about this book, but I haven’t put myself to read it. This would be a good for me since there are still some unresolved fears I have.

    But besides that, these are great tips. I have to say that I resonated well with #1 and #6.

    For #1 I would say to not only know yourself but be comfortable under yourself. Be your unique self and you’ll not only attract the right people but also many more will appreciate the way you are whether they’re in your inner circle or not.

    For #6 I love the fact that you mentioned “failing forward”. Look forward to your failures so that you can keep learning. This is true success and eventually you’ll attract the success you really want!

    Thanks for sharing Kim! Have a great weekend!
    Sherman Smith recently posted…Conquering The Fear Of Publishing Your New Blog PostMy Profile

    1. Hi Sherman,

      We all have unresolved fears – I’m still scared of heights!

      Yeah, I like the concept of falling forward. ‘Failure’ is part of life – we have lots of setbacks every year. Some people look at failure as an unmitigated disaster, while other see it as a stepping stone to better things. It’s all a matter of perspective, outlook and attitude.

      Thanks for dropping by

      Kim Willis recently posted…Scaredy Cat ‘Make Money’ Bloggers and the Lateral Thinking ImperativeMy Profile

  9. Susan Jeffers Says ‘Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway’ (Is She Right?) – Sorry but I don’t feel so. I believe if you have .1 % doubt then never do it. Till not you are not 100% sure never put effort. first ready your mind and then start in direction. 🙂

      1. Kim Thanks for your attention, Everyone have their own approach toward life and on the bases of those approaches people make judgments. For some people life is a competition and they battle to stay in society. For some people life is golden chance to explore and enjoy beautiful earth. I am not saying Kim, you are wrong !!. I mean to say we all have a perception about life.

        I agree with Tom that without risk, we can’t achieve goals but here I am saying do efforts after you are 100% sure because if you are not sure, we will start doubting on your ability.

        Kim, Everybody has something to fear, there is nothing bad in this. Fear will help you taking steps careful. without fear we do only mistakes but with fear we try to correct those mistakes, because we don’t want to loss again !!
        Julian Wang recently posted…Facebook Videos Casting via Facebook Android App To Chromecast SoonMy Profile

        1. Hi Julian,

          Yes, you are right. You do require confidence when starting a new business or project. That said, sometimes we may also experience a little bit of self-doubt or anxiety. In fact, I’ve experienced anxiety with every new business initiative I’ve embarked on. It goes with the territory. Sure, I also believed it was going to work but I still had some fears. And that’s where courage comes in – I just felt the fear and did it anyway.

          Thanks for your contribution

          Kim Willis recently posted…How to Use Authority Positioning to Give Your Competitors NightmaresMy Profile

  10. Hi Kim,

    Great post! 🙂

    Feel the fear and do it anyway is valid advice. As long as it’s you don’t use it to jump off a building. Lol.

    Knowing yourself, voicing the fear, giving potency to goals, revisiting, creating a vacuum, and let go and let God are all great tips that I’ll be keeping in mind next time fear stops me from doing something of value and worth

    I was reading a story the other day about a well-known comedian who got afraid every single time he went on stage. Even 50 years later. But he still just felt the fear and did it anyway.
    Leonardo “List Legend” LaVito recently posted…10 “Magical” Tricks You Can Use To Pull Email Subscribers Out Of Your Comments SectionMy Profile

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