Week #2: Shola

Right before I spoke with Jordana this week, I was buzzing with energy, finally feeling as though I made headway and for the first time I was specific. I spoke in detail with one of the people I had worked with in the past, and got some insight from him as to whether or not he felt my business idea had potential clients and if so, who were these people. Quickly, he was able to think of two of his friends who fit the criteria and profile I created. He mentioned that my business would be mostly built upon referrals, because how else would I find these specific types of people.

This question in his mind was a minor speed bump that we quickly moved over, but for me it hung in the air. Who exactly are these people and how do I find them? Speaking with Jordana reinforced my concern, she too wanted to know the answer and pushed me to be more specific still. “Oh man, I’m still not specific enough?” I wondered. She even said I should speak with another person I’ve worked with and talk with her about my business idea and if she had friends that would be interested in it.  If she did have such friends, ask her if she would be willing to set up an informal meeting between her friends, my possible clients, and myself.

I shut down. What Jordana was suggesting made perfect sense and seemed easy enough, but here is where the fear came in. Many thoughts flooded my mind, including , “Am I old enough to present myself as an expert? Am I really that good at providing this service that I am able to speak with strangers about it? Am I really going to begin this business and take this risk? And my old faithful set back: If I invest all of this time into this business idea, what becomes of my other passions, the ones I trained and went to school for?

Jordana sensed my freak out and asked very directly “Shola, what’s the fear?” How does she know I’m afraid of anything? How is she so insightful? I told her. Then even more calmly she asked, “Will this (your business) compromise the other things you want to do?” It was obvious; the answer was a resounding “No” and with that our session for the week ended. I cried. She made it so simple but for years I’ve built walls with these fears. These fears have served as my “Not a Through Street” sign. Without questioning I always followed the sign and turned around, wondering why I end up seemingly back where I began.

The value in our session this week was questioning the beliefs I have held about myself and my ability to begin a business. I believe in order to make any substantial progress you must look at where you’ve been in order to track the course for where you want to go. Facing your insecurities and making the conscious decision to deal with them will open up a new realm of possibilities. This week I examined my mental barriers and made a pledge to move through my fear to enjoy the level of success I have always envisioned for myself. Til next week.

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