Accepting Help From Strangers

I've been telling everyone about my idea to start a dance studio. But my limiting belief is saying, "I can't actually do this." Like a simmer over low heat, the sinister thoughts continuously bubble to the surface.

I've accomplished enough in my life to know not to listen to that voice.

No matter what I achieve, the negative voice doesn't go away. I love the way Liz Gilbert describes that voice as your annoying friend who's allowed to tag along on the road trip but isn't allowed to drive.

I use the tactic of talking about my goals publicly so that the public pressure will hold me accountable for taking action.

Now that our online course Building a Second Brain is coming to an end, I have the space to start working on my dance studio.

But starting a dance studio is completely overwhelming.

In Building a Second Brain, we teach a concept of breaking down projects into "Intermediate Packets," small pieces of work that individually move the project forward and stand on their own as pieces of work you can share.

One student commented, "Now that I can break my big idea into smaller components, I'm terrified of having the responsibility to take action." I felt totally exposed in their comment. I know what actions to take, but I'd rather daydream about the distant future than take the small, uncomfortable actions now.

Then a subscriber to my email list, Jeremy Finch, responded to my newsletter asking how he could help. I'm the type that not only avoids asking for help but declines help when it's offered. It's hard for me to know what to ask for.

Jeremy has a background at the intersection of arts and business. I was checking email after drinking a beer, and I took the plunge and requested a call.

I've talked to many friends about my business idea, but talking to a stranger was so clarifying. Here I am talking to someone who has no stake in my life. Jeremy could be objective. And weirdly, it's easier for me to be vulnerable with people I don't know.

Jeremy did an excellent coaching call. He listened to my ideas, repeated back the core elements that stood out, and asked open-ended questions. Jeremy also gave me ideas to consider tapping into local resources. He helped me open up possibilities to see that I could pilot numerous models to figure out who my audience is and what they like best.

My favorite question he asked that I'm going to add to my project kickoff checklist template is, "What would failure look like?" In answering, I laughed. It's not the idea of losing money that I'm afraid of. Failure for me is giving up before I give it a real try.

I left the call feeling motivated with a series of actions to take.

Check out Jeremy's Newsletter The Fire Jar which explores creativity, movement, and learning.