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You know when you’re ready for growth, tired of playing small and just a teensy bit terrified that if you don’t unstick your business, you’ll stay small?
When you’re really really scared how it’s going to happen and of letting yourself down?
When you feel in chaos and you know you need to get up and shake yourself to get visible?
That was me.
This is my story of how I stopped fear of visibility keeping me small.
That’s why I created a Money Systems Audit free download and printable to help your business grow and escape from chaos to flow (more on that later).
Let’s go back to 2012.
My business profile pic in 2012 ———>
I was emotionally worn out, broke, with a new business and a business model that was pioneering (and still is) and I needed to make money fast.
You’ll have noticed those elements don’t go together.
Pioneering usually does not mean getting money fast, it means long tail growth. Which is ok, and still is, but bills, you know how it is.
Since when did I ever do life the easy way, instead of the ‘I’m going to do it this way because I know it’s the right thing to do for me’ way.
Then 6 months into my business my father in law fell down the steps, needed full time care and things got *interesting* (read the full story here).
Let’s skip forward 2 years and my father in law has died pain free in his own home (yay to pain free). I have time to take stock and really look at me, my business and what I want from life.
Oh, and the fear demons.
I know you know what I mean. Little fuckers aren’t they.
These fear fucks are what get in our way.
I don’t care if the fear is rational or if it isn’t.
Since when did rational matter if you’re doing an emotional kangeroo-in-the-headlights with an Australian road train bearing down on you?
I’m talking about fear that keeps you paralysed, the fear that tells stories in your head and puts beliefs in there – so you can even hear the voice of the person that isn’t you and their voice controlling what you think and feel and do.
It’s bloody irritating.
How dare you? That’s trespass that is. Didn’t you SEE the sign on my head that says trespassers will be prosecuted?
Ah. but that’s the thing isn’t it?
I had given permission even if I didn’t realise it or was too young (as a lot of this stuff is decades old from when we were weeny).
I went on a royal rousting to evict the little fear buggers.
Me on Eastbourne beach in December before my 2015 strategy session with my business coach ——–>
I was kicking ass.
And yes, I was still terrified of anyone actually noticing me.
Can you relate?
And then the universe intervened.
In mid November something happened.
A few people in the UK with tiny businesses noticed there was this change in tax law coming and it looked very bad.
Obviously this couldn’t be the case as millions of us across the world use, buy and sell digital media and we were sure that of course it couldn’t be what it looked like.
A few of us, who mostly were strangers to each other, got together and a group was born which (much later) became EU VAT Action.
I knew I needed to write a blog post about EU VAT.
I knew the post was likely to go viral because hardly anyone was talking about EU VAT 5 weeks before it came into effect and I’d be one of the first.
I knew – somehow – that this was international and national media visibility and if I did this thing, I needed to be prepared to be very very visible very very quickly.
I was in full kangeroo-in-headlights mode for an entire week.
In fact, I was channelling total Fear-Is-A-Zombie-Coming-To-Get-Me. Watch Thriller, read the lyrics and you’ll see what I mean.
(On days you need to nail visibility, watch Thriller and focus on the line ‘now is the time for you and me to cuddle close together’. Supports nails it)
My fear had nowhere left to run.
It’s only been a few months since we started the campaign and I’ve been in 2 government meetings, on live BBC Radio, in international publications, UK publications, had a photoshoot for the Daily Mail and soon going to an EU meeting in Brussels! (Even my newsletters were shared internationally and went viral)
Have I been nervous?
I spent an hour with Natalia Shpek last year telling her how I couldn’t ever be in the Mail. Now I’m going to be in the Mail.
Daily Mail photoshoot Instagram ———>
My fear knew it’s time had come. My fear was paralysed instead of me.
I kicked ass.
It’s not like the fear isn’t there anymore. It is.
Only now I know how to feel safe while being visible.
It’s about perspective.
I took this photograph on 19th December.
The day before I’d travelled down to Eastbourne to spend the afternoon with my business coach creating a plan of action for my business strategy 2015. I had a great day (and was knackered. All this strategy can get tiring).
On the train home, barely awake, I received a text asking if I could make a meeting tomorrow morning with the government and HMRC at HM Treasury (the intimidating one opposite the Houses of Parliament).
I could have said no.
Instead I said yes to visibility and re-arranged my day.
Clare, Rosie and Juliet of EU VAT Action changing the world at HM Treasury ——–>
What has this to do with Nelson and his column?
Nelson’s Column is an international icon known by billions.
Think about that.
On my way to the Tube after an incredible meeting discussing international politics and tax law, I looked up at Nelson.
When was the last time you actually looked at Nelson? Do you know which direction he faces?
He’s a man, he’s wearing a naval uniform, he has pigeon poo on his head, that we know.
It’s the icon we pay attention to.
It’s the icon and what it represents (his brand and brand London) we pay attention to. It’s not the man.
Which means it doesn’t matter that Mr Nelson Sir is looking down Whitehall towards the Houses of Parliament.
It’s all about perspective.
The spruce next to Nelson’s Column every December isn’t just a gift from Norway, it’s half the height of Nelson’s Column and not that famous (let’s be honest here).
The spruce is right next to that international-known-to-billions-icon, it’s just as visible from my perspective and just as tall.
In fact, let’s say your business is our Norway spruce.
All you need to do is for your tribe to know you’re associated with a famous icon in a reliable way they can trust, and that’s your visibility nailed.
It really can be that simple.
Which brings me to back to now and your money systems.
You thought you’d escaped hadn’t you?
Visibility needs flow.
Flow hates chaos.
Chaos loves zombies.
When you’re in flow and your money systems are in flow, that’s when things happen and somehow it’s really not as scary as you thought (take it from me).
A friendly, free download with handy tick boxes you can print out and stick above your desk.
And because I am the best kind of awesome, click this big red button right below and bob’s your uncle, it’s right here for you.
The only thing that’s left is to make yourself accountable by sharing this post and saying you’re doing Your Money Systems Audit.