2015 has been a year of goals for me. While everyone was writing their list of resolutions I sat down and created a list of things I wanted to accomplish this year. What I’ve learned since January is that as I check one thing off this list another is added. This list has grown from personal goals that I want to achieve to professional challenges I want to overcome. But what I find even more exciting is the idea that the list is always changing-it is a working list. So what have I accomplished thus far? Well…I work out twice a week with a personal trainer; I’ve purchased a set of golf clubs and am actively learning to golf; I stepped outside of my box and successfully wrote a guest blog for my dear friend Danny Beyer’s website (and now starting my own blog); and just this past weekend I emcee’d the Ankeny Little League’s Opening Day Ceremonies. It is this last goal that I want to write about today.
Anyone that knows me can tell you that I do not speak to large groups. My biggest fear is public speaking-glossophobia. They probably will also tell you that I am so good at it that they can’t understand why I don’t enjoy doing it. I can tell you that I do not enjoy that nervous feeling I get in the pit of my stomach. I dislike how clamy my hands get leading up and during the speaking event. I most definitely hate how I inevitably find a way to stutter, mispronounce and forget what I am talking about when in front of large groups. So why did I volunteer to emcee the event? Why put myself out there and expose myself to that feeling that I dread? Because facing your fears is how you grow as a person. Because if you are not uncomfortable than you are stagnant. Yes I screwed some words up; my hands were clamy; and I had that nervous pit in my stomach the whole time but I survived. I set an example for my children. I also gave myself an opportunity to face my fear! I have other opportunities and will continue to have opportunities that involve speaking to large groups and I am sure it will instill those horrible feelings each time but the fact that I will continue to force myself into these situations gives me the confidence that I need to continue to grow as a person professionally and personally. Plus the fact that I am still alive is proof enough that it is all in my head.
My advice-push yourself to your limits and then push yourself some more. Put yourself out there! Shout “Hello! Look at me!!” Find ways to expand your skillset, seek out individuals that can give you opportunities to grow and then take those opportunities and own them! I may not be the best public speaker but that isn’t what matters; what matters is that I can do it and did do it when the opportunity was presented. Don’t let your fear win; stand up and face it!