Whether you’re trying to start a business, expand, or just move onto a new phase of your life, one of the biggest obstacles to overcome is fear.
Fear can stop a dream in its tracks and has totally sidelined some really great plans. The trick is to not let fear overtake you.
It starts with a decision
I’ve always loved the water and learned how to swim by age 4. However, for some reason, I was petrified of diving off a diving board. I could jump off the board but diving head first terrified me to no end. This fear continued until my teen years.
The summer before high school, my family moved to another state. Before we were able to move into our new house, we lived in an apartment complex which had a pool. I kept watching all the other kids’ dives, observed their techniques, and I thought: Surely I can figure this out.
One day, I decided that it was time to stop panicking about what could happen and just dive. And then, I was hooked. I practiced every day and added trickier dives. I got recruited for the high school diving team and was stunned when I passed the tryouts.
I soon discovered that the members of the diving team all had some major training and experience. One thing they taught me, in addition to technique, was that it’s all about attitude.
1) If you can see it, you can do it! We practiced visualizing our approach, how we hit the end of the board, how we moved in the air, and how we entered the water. This method works for just about any goal.
2) Own it! Approach the board with confidence, take your time, take a deep breath, and get in the zone! Own your performance. Never show fear or hesitation. Like they say: Go big or go home!
3) Push past your comfort zone! Don’t keep doing the same things! Push yourself to learn harder and more complicated techniques so you can challenge yourself and take it to the next level.
4) Don’t let others deter you! At one swim meet, I got on the board and I was actually heckled and booed at – by a Dad! He apparently didn’t feel that girls belonged on our team. At this point, I realized I had a choice. I could either let this guy get to me or I could get in the zone.
I saluted to the Dad in the balcony and proceeded to nail every single dive. Much to my amazement, I not only beat his son; I beat my personal best and the school diving record.
Just do it!
I have had many setbacks in my life and many people have tried to deter me. However, if I learned anything from my diving days, it’s this: You’ve got to keep the faith – and just dive in.
Dori Staehle is the owner and Chief Encouragement Officer of Rock the Next Stage. Her holistic coaching programs help clients gain clarity, confidence, and clients so that they can rock the next stage of their businesses and their lives. Dori is no longer diving but still swims laps. Just keep swimming!