Time To Fail… More, Faster, Better

Less than two years into my starting my business, I reached the six-digit mark. Interestingly, I had no experience,  virtually no relationships to leverage, and no knowledge of how to start or run a speaking and coaching business.

When Pam, a seasoned business woman and executive coach, asked me to deliver a presentation on generational differences to a group of women executives, I told her I didn’t know how. 

They Want YOU To Show Up And Share… Shine 

“Just show up and share with them what you just shared with me,” Pam said.

I showed up with a pad of paper (I didn’t know how to use power point), and shared my stories. We got into a great dialogue, and we all walked out of there more aware and capable of communicating across generations.

Ultimately, I landed my first contract with Marriott because of that “presentation.”

Land The Opportunities You Crave

I went on to land many more contracts over the next ten years.

I spoke for and consulted with leaders in across industries. I even got to help the U.S. Navy increase retention during one of the most challenging times.

It was fun!

How Beliefs Can Unconsciously Squish Out The Fun

And then two things happened simultaneously. One—I bought into the belief that there was a right way to land opportunity, speak, write, and even coach. Secondly, I scored my biggest-ever keynote speaking opportunity.

Rather than go into the details of the who and what of that speech, I will tell you that the idea of not getting that speech perfect led me to abandoning myself.

I hired a speech writer, who crafted the perfect speech. I memorized each word of the forty-minute speech, and spent hours getting the power point perfect. 

Perfect Cannot Include You Because You Are Not Perfect

And then…

I bombed it.

I mean I really bombed it.

I had a good opening. And then, I forgot every word of my perfectly crafted speech. My audience tweeted about my spectacular failure… as I was failing. It was embarrassing.

Embarrassment Is Often A Part Of Failure

The worst part was that I didn’t know what went wrong. I had forgotten that I my stories, my passion, my process … was why they hired me. Not some perfect speech someone else wrote.

I am the reason they hired me in the first place, and yet I left me off the stage that day. And, unfortunately, I did exactly that for the next several years. 

Instead of going back to the basics of what worked, I spent more money, worked with bigger name speaker coaches, hired more editors, and ultimately found myself miserably isolated and anxious.

Stop Feeding The Fear, Or It Will Feed Your Demise 

This lasted for almost a decade. A decade! 

No more. 

Now, here I am, at the start of a new decade, with a renewed promise to myself to go out and mess it all up again. To forget all I know, ask more questions, share from my heart, and trust in myself more.

This blog is how I’m beginning this new journey.

Right here, with you, right now. 

No editing (at least not from outside sources), no waiting, no perfecting. Play (write), edit myself, play some more, edit some more (maybe), and then publish it.

Decide To Move Beyond Fear

So, there you have it. This is how I’m moving beyond my fear. One blog, meeting, speech, product, event, and connection at a time. And… one day at a time, too! Turns out, I can really only do this living brave thing one day at a time.

How about you?

How are you releasing fear and realizing your potential in this new decade?

Here’s to your greatness,

Misti Burmeister

Misti Burmeister has been helping leaders have difficult conversations for more than 15 years, increasing engagement and productivity across generations. Help your team reach its highest potential at https://MistiBurmeister.com