What do you fear?
I’ve been struggling with this question for a few weeks now.
I despise public speaking – it makes me very nervous, uncomfortable and changes the tone of my voice. Even those group settings where everyone has to introduce themselves briefly – yup, they give me the shakes too. So to help over-come this fear, I recently volunteered to host the Chiang Mai Digital Nomad Coffee Club – every Friday stand with a microphone in-front of 30-50 strangers and try not to run away!
I’ve been trying to dissect what exactly is causing this fear. Where is it rooted in? I think part of it goes back to childhood – growing up as the token Asian with people constantly starring at me and making racist comments about my appearance. I’ve made peace with a lot of that stuff so don’t really think that’s the root of it.
Digging deeper, I think the real cause of what makes me nervous when voicing myself is this:
fear of people judging me
fear of not winning people’s approval
fear of not everyone liking me
Thankfully my business coach did some powerful NLP stuff on me and this has helped.
While listening to a fellow coach’s story out here, she quoted Robin Roberts which really resonated with me “Make Your Mess Your Message” This shifted something inside my head which has helped deal with this mental block.
My mess that most of you know about was a multi-episode collapsed lung due to stress & an unsustainable modern-American lifestyle. On the surface, this was simply a physical health problem. But if you really look underneath, it was actually a mental & emotional problem that manifested itself outwards into physical form.
So then what’s my message that I want to bring forth & broadcast to the world? I’ve touched on bits and pieces of it, here and there on social media and vlogs. My message is about change, growth and deep transformation. But in a way, I’ve been censoring myself. I’ve left out critical lessons, anecdotes and experiences that have forever changed me and been crucial to this journey.
And so again, I’m left here questioning myself as to what’s holding me back? What fear is causing me to withhold information that could possibly help & benefit other people?
It’s the same reasons listed above to the original question – fear of judgment and losing approval from people.
Today I’ve decided to get comfortable with the idea that not everyone may agree with my values, beliefs or decisions. In order for me to evolve as a person, become a leader and grow my business, this is a non-negotiable.
For me to better serve people and the world, I have to be 100% transparent and openly-talk about how I overcame these obstacles. If I want to share my authentic story, then I have to admit it wasn’t all sunshine & self-help books. There were some dark times and unorthodox techniques were used. Most agree I don’t live a conventional lifestyle. As such, the solutions and paths I’ve used to turn my life around and transform myself back to a state of a healthy, vibrant, thriving human being are indeed unconventional.
Some of these alternative, holistic methods are in direct opposition to laws in America and typical social programming. I know for a fact there are members of my family who disapprove of my past decisions – and I accept that (I should also mention others do support me).
I’m a huge fan of Gary V – a man after my own heart, representing exactly what I’m striving for – successful business strategies with a very strong human, emotional element to them. In his latest book, he talks about the clouds and the dirt.
Social media portrays my clouds as the pretty pictures of exotic beaches, mountains & temples.
But the truth of the matter is this – these aesthetic moments in time and the positive mental state I am in are a result of the dirt I had to go through. I didn’t just wake up one day and my life was suddenly a lot better.
The actual behind-the-scenes work (moving the dirt) that went into improving, healing and developing myself – day in & day out for the past 3-years – I haven’t exactly been forthcoming as some of these topics are considered controversial.
By censoring myself and my message, I’m denying the knowledge gained from these experiences that need to be shared with people who may benefit the most from it. This lessens my impact on society as a whole. And how do I know I’ve had an impact on people with the few pieces of content shared so far? Every once in a while I get a message from someone telling me this. This is motivating for me. 🙂
As I begin to get more comfortable stepping into the public spotlight, I have to be vocal on certain topics, as well as voice my own personal truths from this discovery process. Meaning, there’s content sitting on my hard-drive which hasn’t been released (some from over a year ago) – but will be in the next few weeks. They tie into my business & travel plans for the next few months. I’ve also been a guest on a few podcasts to spread my message.
At heart I’m a diplomat and prefer harmonious relationships – but I’m also an idealist. The current situation the world is in, especially in regards to the food & education systems, drug-laws and the various pressures society places on individuals to conform, are in need of drastic c h a n g e. At it’s core, the current b e l i e f s & v a l u e s in society need to be shifted and I have my own personal vision for how to accomplish this. This awakening process won’t happen overnight and it’s a long-term play. For sure this is what I’ll be doing for the next 10-30 years.
For most of my life, I’ve been a people pleaser and stepping on the toes of others has always been a big no-no for me. This doesn’t mean I’ll go out of my way to hurt or offend somebody. It simply means I’m acknowledging this newly found fire inside and making a conscious choice to stop standing silently on the sidelines. These opinions come from my soul and a place of [tough] love, not hostility. And if my posts don’t jive with you, feel free to unfollow me – no hard feelings.
Lastly, if there’s a certain topic or something from my past challenges that you’d like for me to go more in depth about, no matter how personnel it may be, pls comment below or PM. I’m an open book and I’ll do a piece on it.