Tag: Overcoming Fear

What Transparency Looks Like

For you who are familiar with Creative Mornings, this month’s theme is “Transparency.” The word “transparency” brings to my mind synonyms like “clarity,” “vulnerability,” and “authenticity.” These words have really been on my radar the pasts few weeks.

Transparency = Vulnerability + Authenticity



Last week, I was giving my presentation entitled AWEthentic Branding to a group of artists at the Arts & Business Council of Greater Nashville. The group included artists of varying mediums, from graffiti artists to jewelry makers to singer-songwriters, and everything in between. I was discussing the importance of understanding and embracing your uniqueness as an artist so you can become comfortable articulating it to your own unique market.

At the end of the session, one of the youngest participants spoke up and shared how much the principles she had just learned gave her some relief from all the fear she’s been experiencing. She began crying as she talked about what it does to her self-esteem when she starts to compare herself to her competition and how she now sees she doesn’t have to compare herself when she can pinpoint what makes her unique. She then began apologizing for crying and said she was embarrassed for doing so.

I stopped her and said, “It’s this kind of transparency and vulnerability that helps everyone else here know they are not alone in those same feelings.” By being transparent, she gave others a sense of relief. By being the one brave enough to express what no one else had the courage to share, she set an example. Her example illustrates it’s not only okay to be transparent, but that type of authenticity also impacts others in ways none of us could imagine. I could immediately sense the impact on the rest of the group when she shared this. It would have been such a shame (and a less meaningful program) if she had never spoken up.

Transparency = Clarity + Clearness



Recently, I had my 90-day follow up session with a favorite client of mine. One of the many reasons why she is a favorite client is because she is so creative in using metaphors and analogies to make ordinary concepts come to life.

When I asked her what our previous coaching sessions have done for her, she said, “Going through our coaching sessions is like taking my car through the car wash. The car wash gets all the dirt off the car and windshield, making it so much clearer to see. I’m the one who still has to drive the car, but at least now I can see where I’m going and feel refreshed. I have so much more clarity about my career path and my path in life.”

It’s this kind of clear perspective and clarity that comes from the process of being honest and transparent with yourself. Sometimes though, it’s not always apparent to everyone how to do that. The coaching and advising methods I provide my clients shows them how, leading them to an understanding of their own uniqueness and how to be transparent about their uniqueness.

Learn What Makes You Unique


You too can learn this in my next AWEthentic Branding program that will be hosted Oct. 12th by the Virtual Collective’s “You Gotta Eat” speaker series. It is a lunch+learn format, and lunch is included in the registration fee. Click here for more details. I look forward to seeing you there!

Stay connected on this and other events by subscribing to the paNASH newsletter. You’ll receive a complimentary Goal-Achievement Plan along with useful tips, articles, and other resources!

What words come to your mind when you think of the word “transparency”? (Share in the comment box below.)

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Neil Newton on the Key to Happiness in Business

Last week I invited you to my first Periscope interview. My goal is to share with you examples of people who have boldly pursued their passions and the advice they have for others hoping to do the same. In case you missed it, below is the first interview in full with the owner of Paddle Up Nashville, Neil Newton.

happiness in business

In this interview, Neil discusses how he and his partner Cindy have taken the things that are core to their lives and their passions and turned them into a business for profit. In doing so, he shares the process he went through, including re-framing fear as simply a challenge to overcome, and how past failures made it less intimidating to take present risks.

“When you sell for a living, you experience enough failures to go, ‘Okay, that didn’t work. I’ll go do something else.'”

Neil also discusses how he’s never let age be a factor in the pursuit of his passions, and talks about how the key to happiness in business is figuring out what you love to do and then getting someone to pay you to do it.

Some questions I ask:

  • Tell the story of how you decided to pursue your passion as a business.
  • What fears did you have and how did you overcome them?
  • How did your past experience prepare you?
  • How does your work help others?
  • What advice do you have regarding pursuing your passions later in life?
  • What advice do you have for someone contemplating a career change or starting a business related to a lifelong passion?

happiness in business

In this interview you will learn:

  • How to apply what is core in your life to your work. (3:06)
  • How to take risks without having all the knowledge upfront. (3:35)
  • How to re-frame fear and instead view it as a challenge. (4:09)
  • How to gain knowledge about your passions. (4:54)
  • The importance of following your gut and the joy of sharing your passions with others. (5:47)
  • How failure gives you the courage to try something new. (7:05)
  • How helping others can be a joy. (7:31)
  • How to not let age to be a factor. (9:12)
  • The definition of success. (10:11)
  • How to pursue passions outside of work. (10:51)
  • Advice for others wanting to turn their passion into a business. (13:19)

Some of my upcoming interviews will include Katie Gonzalez, a bookbinder who creates meaningful handmade books and teaches others to make their own journals, photo albums, etc., and Joel Anderson, “Spirit of Nashville” artist and owner of Anderson Design Group. To receive notifications about upcoming interviews, follow me on Periscope (@paNASHcoaching) and subscribe to my newsletter!

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Resources for Nashville Transplants

photo by Warne Riker, www.wrikerphoto.com

Whenever I meet someone new in Nashville, we always get to talking about where we are originally from (because let’s face it, it’s not often you meet a native Nashvillian) and how we each ended up in Music City. I love hearing people’s stories of how and why they came here.

Moving to Music City

My own story started about 10 years ago. I came to Nashville on vacation with a friend for the CMA Music Festival. In addition to attending the festival on Lower Broadway and at Nissan Stadium, I got to see some other parts of the city and fell in love with it. I could sense Nashville was on the verge of becoming an “it” city, and I wanted to be a part of that.

So, right after my vacation in June of 2006, I started casually looking around for jobs in Nashville. My job search kicked into high-gear a month later after breaking up with my then-boyfriend. I of course used all the job search tools and skills I teach my clients, and by late September I had two job offers on the table, one in the Vanderbilt Career Center and one in Vandy’s Owen School of Business’s career center.

Luckily, I was able to negotiate a mid-November start-date for my new job in the VCC, giving me enough time to fulfill previous work commitments at my old job, sell my condo in NC and find a place to live in Nashville (boy am I glad I got in on some Nashville real estate when I did!).

Pursuing Your Passions

I can’t explain the foresight I had on what this city was going to become. It was just something I felt deep down to my core, and I had such a desire to be here. Was it a little scary the thought of moving some place where I knew no one? It was A LOT scary! But it was even scarier to me to stay stuck where I was. My story along with so many others’ stories is a testament to listening to your gut and pursuing your passions.

Transplant Nashville

I can’t believe it’s been 10 years! It’s amazing all the changes and growth I’ve witnessed over the past 10 years. One of the things recently taking shape here in Nashville is a movement created just for people who have relocated to Nashville called Transplant Nashville.

“Transplant Nashville is a movement of people seeking to build community and establish roots,” says co-founder Jordan Minton. “We all come from different places, and each of us has a different path. This movement is about finding where those paths intersect.”

Minton believes that when we tell people our stories, amazing things can happen, and I agree! Transplant Nashville is a real-life version of social media. It exists to help people find community in Nashville, whether you’ve been here 10 days or 10 years.

“Your story has the ability to impact other people, and we would love to share it,” says Minton. “We created this company to be a conversation-starter. Our hope is you would invite people to engage with you. So many of us are looking for a place to belong. The purpose of Transplant Nashville is to help people find their place.”

Transplant Nashville’s purpose is to help people find their place, and paNASH is here to help people (including those new to Nashville) find their purpose. It’s only natural for Transplant Nashville and paNASH to come together to create a strategic alliance. I am so impressed with all three founders of this organization and their heart for what they are doing. Check out their own stories at www.transplantnashville.com!

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Overcoming Fear

Whether it’s fear of failure, fear of the unknown, or even fear of success, we all have experienced fear in some shape or form. For some of us, our fears have been so powerful they have kept us from getting the things we want most, including love, adventure, success, financial freedom, you name it. Knowing how to deal with fear in a healthy manner instead of letting it paralyze us is the key to achieving our goals and desires.

Last week we talked about the fears and anxieties that come when moving into The Learning Zone, and as promised this week I am going to discuss how to overcome those fears.

Out of control

Recently I was having breakfast with an old high school friend. She was telling me about how she finally came to the realization that a lot of her own fears in life were less about the things she thought she was afraid of, and more about the fear of not having control.

She realized that, in looking back on her life, everything has turned out pretty good so far, so why not just accept the fact that she’s not in control and trust that the future will also turn out good, even in the midst of possible trials and tribulations.

Willingness Instead Of Fearlessness

In listening to the things my friend said she had been afraid of for so long and had finally let go of, I realized I still have some of the same fears she once had, and yes, most of them boil down to just one fear:  the fear of not having control (which is also closely related to the fear of failure and the fear of the unknown).

Some of my friends look at me and think I’m brave or unafraid, but those closest to me know I have just as many fears as the next person. What may appear to be fearlessness is instead a willingness to face fears and push through them. I’ve done this with a lot of my own fears, but still have some fears I need to overcome. How does one do this?

5 Ways of Overcoming Fear

A new friend of mine, author and business and career strategist Gabriel Aviles, recently published a post on Dale Partridge’s The Daily Positive blog entitled “5 Ways Dreamers Can Overcome Their Fear of Failure.” While Gabriel’s article is geared toward those dreaming to leave their job to start their own business, the lessons can be applied to any type of goal one may have. Because after all, just like we all have fears, we all have dreams.

So let’s look at the 5 things Gabriel says to do to overcome fear of failure (replace the word “failure” with your own fear you’re currently facing):

  1. Unpack your fears:  Gabriel says to acknowledge your fears and ask yourself what would be the worse-case-scenario if those fears came true.
  2. Forget about your fears:  this one is pretty self-explanatory. I will say it is a lot easier to forget about your fears once you’ve completed step #1 and gotten them out of your system. One thing I’ve done in the past that’s helped me is to write down my fears on a piece of paper, and then light it on fire! Watch those fears go up in smoke!
  3. Gain clarity:  Gabriel discusses the importance of visualizing your desired outcome.
  4. Create a transition strategy:  this is a responsible way to face your fears and move toward your desired outcome.
  5. Take action:  this one is pretty self-explanatory too. Once you’ve decided on a strategy to transition to your desired goal, you have to implement your strategy.

Thank you Gabriel for such great insights! A coach like Gabriel or myself can help walk you through the above 5 steps, and so can the paNASH 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan. It’s free and it’s designed to help you create a strategy and make it happen. Click here to start receiving the 8-Step Goal-Achievement Plan in your inbox today.