“How did you get over your fear of public speaking?” The question was posed by a recent event attendee.
I quickly responded, “Oh, I haven’t. I’m still nervous every time I get ready to go on stage.” For years, I avoided any situation that involved video cameras, media, or standing on a stage. I turned down opportunities out of fear.
Fear that I would say something ridiculous. Fear that I’d make a fool of myself. Fear that people wouldn’t like me.
But here’s what I’ve learned: when I walk through the fear instead of running from it, I find so much fulfillment, joy, and personal growth. And this fuels my desire to continue to step outside my comfort zone and face fear head on.
Yes, I’ve made lots of mistakes on stages and in front of cameras. Yes, I’ve gotten really negative reviews of my presentations. And yes, there are many times when I’ve felt awkward and unqualified.
But by pressing through, punching fear in the face, and doing it anyway — even while scared — I’ve gotten to meet some amazing people I wouldn’t have otherwise, I’ve learned a lot more about what I’m most passionate about, I’ve learned techniques to fake confidence even when you don’t feel it all, I’ve grown so much as a person through being stretched, and I’ve gotten to see God show up and use me in powerful ways.
Can I just encourage you to stop running from fear and start facing it head on? You never know what you might be missing out on until you just start stepping outside your comfort zone and doing things in spite of your fear.
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