This week, my daughter will start Kindergarten. It seems hard to believe that we are here already, but that is the story of life. She is growing and learning and she is ready to take this next step.
My daughter is everything a four year old should be: precocious, curious, imaginative, and so full of energy. She’s smart, cute, and funny. She is not afraid to try new things.
My daughter has no idea what failure means. For her, any mistake is just the opportunity to learn something new, and the amazing thing is, she learns her lessons without even realizing it. Everything is new and interesting to her. She dances and sings hoping there is an audience watching.
If only we adults could live this way.
Unfortunately, I know that somewhere between childhood and adulthood, human beings ‘grow up’. We forget how to be curious about the world around us. We often lack energy. We become fearful of new information, new technology, and new ways of doing things. We ask ourselves “Isn’t it easier to just do things as they’ve always been done?” We tell ourselves not to rock the boat. Heck, we don’t want to get in trouble with the ‘Bar’. We have learned about failure, embarrassment, and about the down-side of stepping out on a limb. Most of the time, we pray that no one is watching us. We stop learning and stay in our comfort zones.
But that type of thinking will never do if you want to be a solo attorney or an entrepreneur. In order to succeed, we have no choice but to be curious enough to imagine what lies beyond our self-imposed borders.
Some of us are pushed to discover new things by accident or on purpose, out of necessity or by choice. I am being pushed out of my comfort zone by necessity.
I strongly believe in what I am doing now, making intellectual property simple, and I believe that it is needed in the world today. I can’t imagine going back to a ‘safe’ corporate job. I want to have flexibility and I also want to bring home a pay check every week.
So, if I want to make my business succeed, I have to start embracing technology. I have to put my name and reputation on the line. I have to face the fact that I might fail at this venture, wasting a lot of time, money, and energy in the process, and proceed anyway. I have to go out and meet new people, hoping they become clients, mentors, or even new friends. I have to act on faith that people will show up.
Over the past few months, but especially in the past week or so, I am pushing my comfort zone to the limit. I am learning new technology, new platforms, and new ways to deliver content to my audience faster than ever before. My new website is up, and I’ve learned the ins-and-outs of WordPress to maintain it. Last week, I booked a venue for my first live IP made simple Workshop in September (shameless plug), and announced it to the world via Twitter. Today, I learned how to use anymeeting.com for my webinar series and scheduled four events over the next four weeks. I’ve shared the announcement to my ‘list’ via MailChimp.
And to be honest, it’s all a little scary. OK, a lot scary.
I’m nervous that no one will sign-up for my free webinar series. I’m scared to death that no one will show up for my live workshop. (How hard can it be to get 30 strangers to pay to come hear me teach them about IP? The answer: It’s REALLY hard!)
And that’s where the lessons I have learned from watching my daughter come in. I am making a conscious decision to embrace the unknown.
If this venture fails, it will be another one of life’s lessons. If no one shows up, I will have to rethink my audience, my marketing, my price, my format, my content, etc., but I will find a solution.
I will be curious and imaginative. I will have no fear. And I pray that there is a big audience waiting to listen to my song and dance routine next month.
How have you acted outside your comfort zone in order to build your solo practice?
All opinions, advice, and experiences of guest bloggers/columnists are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions, practices or experiences of Solo Practice University®.