Ep #175: Is Fear Keeping You from Success?

Where is fear stopping you from creating real success? Today’s episode is critical if you’re a coach and you’re in the process of growing and scaling to your first six or seven figures because fear is something that prevents so many business owners from truly reaching their full potential.

I’ve been reflecting on this personally, but it also comes up for my clients so regularly, so I know you’re probably experiencing your fair share of fear as well. So, what is your fear? When you think about taking your business to the next level, what are you afraid of? There is deep knowledge in the answer to that question, and I’m helping you leverage it on this episode.

Tune in this week to get clear on your fear, and decide what you want to do with it. I’m sharing why your fear isn’t keeping you safe, how fear impacts your thoughts, especially in business, and what you can do to make your fear work for you instead of against you.

If you’re ready to create the next-level million-dollar version of yourself and become an example of what is possible, I invite you to join my High-Level Mastermind. And if you’re not at that level yet but you want to be, I encourage you to join my business accelerator, The Mastermind. I’m so confident in the processes that I teach that especially for the next cohort, I’m guaranteeing your investment. So click here to fill out your application and schedule a call! 

I’ve created something special for all of you, it’s an exclusive three-part private podcast series called 3 Vital Shifts Every Life Coach Needs to Rapidly Scale Their Business. I know it’s going to bring a ton of value to you because so many of you listeners are in this process right now, and this is the perfect resource to help you position yourself to make a quantum leap in your business. And to get access, all you need to do is click here!

What You’ll Learn:

  • What fear is and how your brain is creating it.
  • Why you always get to decide what you want to do with your fear.
  • The difference between healthy and unhealthy fear and why fear doesn’t always keep us safe.
  • How to understand the way your brain reacts to perceived threats.
  • Why there is no success without a level of risk in the process.
  • Some examples of how my clients have overcome fear to create amazing success in their businesses.

Listen to the Full Episode:



Featured on the Show:

  • If you’re an established coach and are ready to scale your business, achieve your long-term goals and build a practice that will stand the test of time, my High Level Mastermind could help you take your business to the next level.  Find out more about it by scheduling a call with me here. I look forward to working with you!


Download a Transcript for The Life Coach Business Podcast

You are listening to The Life Coach Business Podcast with Amanda Karlstad episode number 175.

Welcome to The Life Coach Business Podcast, a show for coaches who are ready to up-level their business and take their impact, leadership, and results to a whole new level. If you’re ready to start taking powerful action and become the leader your business needs in order to grow and thrive, this show is for you. I’m your host, Amanda Karlstad, certified life and business coach, and entrepreneurial leadership expert. Now, let’s get down to business.

Hello and welcome everyone. I hope you’re doing well. I am doing amazing. I just wrapped up some amazing coaching calls this week. I’m really excited to bring you today’s episode. It’s a really important one. When I think about today’s topic, there are a few reasons why I think what we’re about to talk about is critical for you if you’re a coach and you’re growing and scaling a business.

So we’re going to dive into something that I have been reflecting a lot on personally lately, and something that I see with so many of my clients that I felt like it was really important to dive into this because I know so many of you are feeling this way as well.

So what I want to talk to you all today about is fear. I want to bring it to you in a context in the way that my intention is that this episode really lands for you. Before we even dive into the teaching today, I want to ask you what is your fear? What is your fear when you think about taking your business to the next level? I want you to consider that question. I want you to listen to what comes up when you answer that question.

Something that I see come up over and over again with so many of my clients as they come into my containers. It’s something that I’ve also found that once we can really see it for what it is, once we can really understand what it is, and it’s something that in most cases our brain is creating. What happens is that then we can decide what we want to do with it.

So my intention with today’s episode is that it’s really going to serve you. I want to invite you to lean into today’s conversation. So I think an important place to start here is by first understanding exactly what fear is. I want to be clear that in the context of today’s podcast, I want to be very clear that I’m not talking about healthy fear. I’m talking about fear as it relates to growing your business. I’m talking about irrational fear. Fear that is created within, that’s not necessarily a product of an experience or of an event.

I’m really only talking about the type of fear that every entrepreneur experiences on their journey of growing a business that ultimately ends up holding them back in one way or another. So I want to be really clear in that distinction because I’m not talking about the fear that keeps us safe in life threatening situations for instance. What I’m talking about is that irrational fear that so often is created by irrational thoughts that we’re having.

So when we look at what fear is, fear is an emotion that we experience. It’s a vibration in our body that we feel it’s biological. It’s something that is evolutionary. So as humans because we have the ability to experience emotions, and in the case of fear, we experience fear in an evolutionary way so that we can maintain safety.

Because if we go back before modern times, when you think about our ancestors, humans as a species needed to be wired truly for safety. Because when you consider all of the modern conveniences that we get to experience today, we way long ago were essentially living in caves. So because of that, fear was actually required. It was required because there quite literally could be very large animals that if we weren’t careful or weren’t aware we could run into. Depending on what type of animal that was, we could be in some serious danger.

So I know that that’s an extreme example but it’s also useful in this conversation because it’s really important to understand that. Because biologically as we have evolved as a species, it’s important to understand that we’re still wired. Our subconscious brain is still hardwired to keep us safe. That is a great thing.

Because when you consider that fear biologically has kept us safe, that we’ve had the ability to generate healthy fear as a species, it’s actually the reason we’re all here today. It’s a very important evolutionary aspect to our survival. So while it is important to all of us, there is definitely that important, healthy fear that we all need to experience.

But when we’re talking about growing a business, and again, we’re talking about those irrational fears that hold us back from doing things in business that need to be done in order to create success. So if we look at modern society today, and as you’re listening to this podcast and as you’re working on your business, when there is a perceived threat of some kind.

So while yes, there likely isn’t a saber toothed tiger outside of your door. But instead, the perceived threat might be putting yourself out let’s say on social media in a new way. Or maybe it’s a fear of what others will think of you, or maybe it’s taking that next big step, making that next investment in your business, to help you take things to the next level. Maybe you’re afraid that it’s not going to work out, or maybe it’s even deciding that you’re going to offer a new program, but you maybe don’t think that you’re ready.

Or maybe you want to serve a specific niche, but you’re afraid to niche down because you feel like you’re leaving people out. Maybe deep down, you’ve wanted to serve that niche, but you’ve been afraid to move in that direction.

I share those examples because what happens is that even with those types of examples, we have perceived threats. Perceived threats that are created in our mind that are then felt in our body physiologically. Many times where we are experiencing the emotion of fear.

So because we’re biologically experiencing the fear, because we are human, because our systems are hardwired to do so, the important thing to understand is that as an entrepreneur, and this really vital. No matter what kind of entrepreneur you are, there will be some level of risk involved. There will be risk that for whatever reason, maybe things might not work out as planned.

Or maybe there’s risk for you when you start a business. Maybe you’re leaving your corporate job, your nine to five. Maybe you’re letting go of that salary. That could be a real risk for you. I will tell you, there’s also risk involved as you grow your business. So even when you’re an established business, there are still many risks involved.

Now, the difference is that all of these risks that are typically experienced as an entrepreneur are generally not life threatening. Sure, while there are definite financial risks when you start a business or when you’re growing a business, you may have a risk in your time, right? There’s a lot of time that we have to put forth in order to grow the business. There might be risks that people aren’t going to like what you have to say. There might be risks that you might have poured everything, your heart, into creating a program, yet no one buys it.

So the point is that there are going to be so many risks that inevitably once you decide that you are going into business, that you are in business. When you decide to grow a business, there will be many inherent risks with that. But the important distinction is that it’s how we respond to the fear that matters. Because the truth is in business when you’re growing, when you’re scaling a coaching business, so much of the fear that I see so many coaches experience is fear that is self-created.

It’s irrational fear that is being created, typically by irrational thoughts. It’s been created from a perceived fear. So one of the most powerful responses that I think you can have as it relates to fear is by using data. I’ve talked about this in different episodes, but one of the things that is really important in my work with my clients is what I believe is part of what helps them step into and become such powerful business leaders is that we use data, is that we know our data, that we understand our data, that we don’t shy away from the numbers. That we understand the importance of that.

I will tell you in more cases than not when you are in a position and you start to utilize data, when you look at different challenges that you’re facing in the business through the lens of data, when you put the emotion aside, and when you choose to look at data, what happens is it actually, in most cases, removes the fear.

So let me give you an example of this. I was recently coaching a client on some things that she had coming up around a program that she had recently launched. So this was one of my High Level Mastermind clients who has had some really big successes in launching this program. In fact, over the last couple of months, she has really grown this program quickly.

Now she’s in a place in her business where she wants to move this to an evergreen program. So what that means is that people can join at any time. Because of the way that she had been marketing her program up to this point, she had to make some changes to how she was marketing, some changes to her funnel. Even though these weren’t big changes, and in this example, just to give you some context, she was doing some live events. She was feeling really great with that. She was getting great engagement. She was getting great results from that.

Moving into this evergreen format, what was happening was it was causing her to feel a little unsteady about things. I could tell that she was feeling unsteady. So the first thing that I coached her through was her data. So what we did is we pulled up her data and walked through the different systems, the different data that we had.

As we were doing that and we started to see all of the great things, all of the really great strong indicators that told us so many things were working already, things like her getting an even higher engagement rate in her webinar or having even more people attend her event, seeing even more people that were showing interest, that were opting into our program, that we’re visiting or sales page, things like that.

So after we did that process, and this is, again, something that I do with many, many of my clients. She told me what a relief it was for her to be able to see the data, to be able to look at the facts, and to not be stuck in her head about whether or not things were working. I will tell you after so many years coaching coaches and helping coaches through this process, I see this happen time and time again where so often as a coach, we might think that something isn’t working in the business.

Because we have that belief, because we are thinking that what happens is we start to spin in doubt, we start to spin in confusion, we start to second guess ourselves. It ultimately really keeps us stuck. What I found is that more often than not when we start to pull back what is really going on, and we really start to pull back the emotions of it.

More often than not, it’s rooted in fear. It’s a fear that things won’t work out as planned. It’s a fear that we’re not on the right track. It’s a fear that everything is going to stop working in the business. It’s a fear of judgment. It’s all sorts of variations of fear. So one of the most common things that I see is that so many coaches stay stuck in fear. They’re stuck in perceived fears. But in reality, the fears aren’t factual. The fears are actually made up, that are fabricated in the brain.

So the first important takeaway here for you is that you have to first be working from data. This something that I’ve learned in my own experience. It’s something that I practice all of the time in my own business. It’s something that once I am able to do this work with my own clients, it helps tremendously because what I have learned is that data removes fear. So no matter where you are in your business journey, just know that your data, even if you feel like you don’t have a lot of data right now, it is so critically important because your data will remove your fear.

Now, one of the other challenges that I see happen over and over again is that even with these perceived fears, again, these biological emotions that we have. It’s very common for us to go into fight, flight, freeze, or fawn. You’ve probably all heard of these terms before. These are our biological responses to fear.

So generally, we will fall into one of these four categories. Again, these are designed to keep us safe. Depending on what the threat is, we, again, will fall into one of these categories, into one of these responses generally. In situations that warrant it, again, are really important to keep us safe.

But in the realm of business where most fears are not life threatening, where there is no real physical threat or danger, what’s happening instead is that our brain is still registering these perceived fears as being real. So even though there isn’t any physical threat, even though there isn’t a life threatening situation, we subconsciously still fall into and respond and react with one of those four biological responses.

So this also is really important to understand because unless you’re aware that this happening, it’s so common to then get stuck unintentionally around the perceived fears that are created. So unless you get aware of this, unless you become aware of your responses, it can go unnoticed. It can go unaddressed. This why cultivating awareness is so critical.

It’s why we have to be able to use our intellect, our prefrontal cortex, our higher brain to make decisions, to process information, to help us process the emotions that we’re feeling and understand that at the base survival level, what is happening, what is at play here, is important. It’s also why, I believe, that being able to properly regulate your emotions is one of the most important aspects to your success as an entrepreneur.

So when we can move into using our intellect, when we can move into utilizing our higher brain, utilizing our prefrontal cortex, we can start to make decisions. We can start to decide how to respond instead of allowing the emotion of fear to overpower us. Because when you’re not emotionally regulated, especially if you’re growing a business, the consequences of that, quite honestly, can be huge.

It could show up in so many different ways and so many patterns. It could be showing up in procrastination. It could be showing up in avoidance. It could show up in a tendency to be making decisions only from emotions rather than data. It can be an avoidance of data, quite honestly. It could be that you’re operating purely from emotion. Emotions that are based that are rooted in fear.

So the reality of this that when we’re not aware of this, what will happen is we will end up perpetuating more and more of that which we don’t want. So I have a challenge for all of you. I want you to consider where in your business are you allowing your success to be determined by fear? What is it that you’re currently afraid to do even though you know that it would move you closer to your goals?

I want you to really answer these questions. I think one of the most important things as it relates to fear in business is after you’ve become aware of it. Once you see it, it actually then allows you to become empowered, to take full responsibility, to see it for what it is, and to move forward in the ways that you need to move forward in.

One of the things that I’ve been coaching a lot of my clients on lately is this. It’s been able to allow the fear to be there. That might be putting themselves out in the world in a bigger way or really going after a particular niche that they’ve maybe been hesitant to go after. It’s really going after that next big goal, being able to say I am going to create a million dollar business. It’s being able to go after their goals unapologetically rather than being at the effect of fear, rather than operating from the fear.

This about being able to move beyond it and being able to say that you know what? I know I’m feeling fear right now, and I trust myself to move forward. Or I know I’m feeling fear right now, and I’m safe to move forward. Feel free to write those down. I think those are really important statements.

Because here’s the great news. The fear that you might be feeling right now, the fear that maybe as you’re listening to this podcast, and after you’ve considered the questions that I’ve asked here, that you’ve uncovered some fears that you’ve been allowing to really be in control.

So I want you to know that fear is always going to show you where you need to grow next. Fear will always be on your growth edge. So just like in life, where fear is a wonderful thing, fear is a protective mechanism. I want to challenge you that fear can also serve you in your business. You can use it to show you where you need to grow next. You can use it to grow your capacity in so many new and powerful ways.

So I want you to consider where your growth edge is right now. Where are you either consciously or unconsciously creating failure because of fear? Where might you be allowing fear to be in control? I promise you, you are so much closer than you think. So I want to encourage you to not stop just because you might be feeling fear. I want you to instead lean into it, let it show you where you need to grow.

I want to leave you with this. Ask yourself this question. What would you do if you weren’t afraid? I want you to consider that and consider what your answer to that question is. There is so much wisdom in that answer. All right, my friends. Have a beautiful week. I’ll talk to you all again soon. Take care. Bye-bye.

Hey if you’re ready for a real breakthrough in your business and want to grow and scale your business to at least six figures or more in annual revenue, I invite you to apply for my exclusive program The Mastermind at amandakarlstadcoaching.com/the-mastermind. I look forward to seeing you there.

Thank you for listening to this episode of The Life Coach Business Podcast. If you want to learn more about how to build, grow, and scale your business and accelerate your results visit amandakarlstadcoaching.com.

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