How to Fear. Less.  David Blaine's answer to this is fascinating.

How to Fear. Less. David Blaine's answer to this is fascinating.

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In a recent interview, David Blaine (@DavidBlaine, Magician, Illusionist & Endurance Performer) was asked, "How do you overcome fear?"

This is a guy who does stuff most of us would consider "CRA-ZEE", like sit in a plastic box hoisted high above London for 44 days without food or water. What-eva!

His answer is awesome, though... "I announce whatever scares me to the world, before I've even figured out how I'm going to do it. And then I start working back from there. Knowing that I've commited to delivering X magic trick at Y date, forces me into action."

When I heard this, I realized I had just done the same thing and it worked brilliantly. I had an idea I'd love to try for almost a year now. I wanted to host workshops for mothers and daughters, at the beach, where we build community, connection and collaboration. Last year, I even went so far as to hire someone to help me run this event, but when it came time to execute, those Elphaba voices in my head jumped in, "What if no one shows up? What if too many people show up? What if people don't like it?" What if, what if, what if...

Panic set in, I realized I had never "announced" my date, so whew!, I was free to go on about my life pretending like it was never even a thought in my mind. Feeling a bit like a loser, but at least I hadn't failed, right? Wrong.

Nine months later, the thought came rushing back and I went so far as to mention it to a mentor of mine. She immediately turned to me, looked me in the eyes and said, "Kirsten, you should do this immediately." (Insert hammer hitting head emoji here). I literally ran home, created the flyer, picked the date and announced it. Holy crap, here we go.

YIKES! Scary as all get out but also amazingly exciting. This past weekend, I had my first event. There were 12 of us. It was awesome! (Yes, 6 people who had paid didn't show. Stuff happens, people). It's funny as I rationalize my fears to others, they tend to look at me cross-eyed and ask, "Whats the big deal? You do this kind of stuff all the time." Yes, AND- it's important to keep doing it.

So, what's your BIG announcement today?

"I'm going to make X$ by Y date in my business."

"I'm going to lose lbs by Y date, in time for my summer beach vacation."

"I'm going to speak up for myself in every meeting with my boss and tell him how I really feel."

Sometimes we just need to GET. IT. OUT. Let someone else know your intentions, hold yourself accountable. And go.

So, my next scary announcement is my first YouGO!Girl Coaching Retreat, which is going to be held in Park City, Utah, September 28- October 1, 2017.

Are you looking for community, collaboration and others to support you on your journey? Together, we'll chart new waters on the next chapter in your life, your new business, your body, whatever is top of mind for you right now. It's going to be so much fun, I can't wait! This will be VERY limited in size (max 8 women), I want all of the women to feel very cared for and heard, so if you are an introvert and wondering if this is the right place for you. Yes, everyone will be very much included. Please let me know if you'd like to get on the "interested" list, more details are coming soon! #thisaintyourmamasretreat

If you don't have anyone else to make your announcement to, reply to this email and announce to MOI... I love helping others step outside of their comfort zones. I'm here for ya, baby.

I was a high school beauty pageant queen.

I was a high school beauty pageant queen.

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Ok, not really, but I did try it once. Really.

Yes, indeed, I believe it was the summer before my senior year of high school, back in 1987. A flyer must have circulated the halls of Sentinel High, up in wonderful Missoula, Montana.

"The Junior Miss Montana Pageant" hosted, in Great Falls

I honestly don't remember that much about the event itself. I just remember driving the four hours with my Mom, who graciously agreed to take me, and staying at some Red Lion Inn (or DoubleTree or whatever chain) where we, contestants, had to learn a couple of musical numbers over the course of several days, meet girls from all over the state and it all culminated with a "pageant" of sorts. The finalists were called and some lucky girl was "crowned". Spoiler alert, no, I didn't win. In fact, I didn't even make the Top 10. It's not an event that I honestly spend much, if any, time, reminiscing about, but it popped into my thoughts the other day as I was discussing with a client, 

"What advice would you give to your 18-year old self?"

In 1984, one of my family's closest friends, Kathy, lost her husband, Ric, and 18-year old daughter, Kristi, in a tragic car accident. Ric and Kristi, were driving home from Wyoming, where Kristi had, as the current Miss Montana, for the Miss USA pageant, performed in an event. Unfortunately, Ric was known for going to bed early, and on this night, tragically fell asleep at the whee just 35 miles from home. Neither he, nor Kristi, were wearing seat-belts (not yet a law back then) and both of them perished when car ran off the road and over-turned.

I had always looked up to Kristi who was four years my senior. She was the beautiful, funny, silly girl, who had Catherine Zeta-Jones looks but not a clue that she was truly stunning. She was the girl who all the boys had a crush on and all the girls wanted to be-friend. I remember her summer job of working at McDonald's, where we used to go visit her and get free french fries (which was a big deal)! She was the cool older friend who would rather take the "little" 8th graders to see "Chevy Chase's Vacation", than spend the evening with one of her several suitors who were always lurking around. 

So, when the Jr. Miss pageant came to my attention four years later, it wasn't that I thought, "Wow, this has been my life long dream", but I did think it would be a wonderful way to honor Kristi, and I guess, even force me out of my basketball shoes and volleyball kneepads for a few days, learn a few dance steps and try something else on for size.

There's a beautiful podcast I'm in love with right now, hosted by Jonathan Fields, called The GoodLife Project. He was riffing on this subject as well the other day... "Advice to your 18-year old self."

I personally think it's wonderful advice not only for an 18-year old, but really for any age.

He suggests you "run multiple experiments". The goal of any of these experiments isn't to succeed at any ONE thing, the goal is to answer three questions:

1) Who am I?

2) What do I care about?

3) What am I good at or capable of getting good at?

You will find that by "playing" and by running these "so-called" experiments in your life, you will be testing the waters. And it is through these tests, you will find your strengths, you will discover what you TRULY value, (which may be in opposition to things those around you are telling you, btw) and opportunities will come from this, which will align with your true self and will put you at peace and.... drumroll, please... may even have side-effects such as HAPPINESS. Ahh...

So, you then may ask... Kirsten, what does you entering a beauty pageant in your 18th year have anything to do with what you are doing now or happiness for that matter?

The answer is simple. I was experimenting. Without even knowing it (no foresight or intention here) I was just merely naively "trying it on." And even though, nothing technically came of it, really (ok, maybe a little poise and presentation skills?). I was just thankful to be able to honor Kristi's spirit and play.

A lot of clients in their late 30's (and beyond) tell me, "At some point, I stopped listening to myself and asking what it is I want. I stopped probing to find out what I truly care about. I even stopped wondering what I am good at or could be good at three or even five years from now." We get so stuck on our story of who we are right now, that we stop seeing who we could really be... like we used to do when we were 18.

So how would you answer these questions? When is the last time you asked yourself who am I?

If you're looking for help on answering these questions, I've got a free tool which helps bring clarity to your vision....