“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”
Last weekend, I attended the Get Paid to Speak Bootcamp in Las Vegas, put on by Darren LaCroix and Ed Tate. During the course of the weekend, I learned of a new term for a common ailment amongst emerging speakers — “Altitude Sickness“.
In this context, Altitude Sickness is NOT the medical condition which occurs when you are at high altitudes and you suffer from headaches, loss of appetite and sleep trouble.
It is the fear of success.
Several attendees shared their fear of success. A reluctance to own the reality that when we speak about our areas of expertise, we connect with people and make a difference in their lives.
Let me share some examples of my encounters with Altitude Sickness.
- When I began to accelerate my getting over stage fright, I entered speech contests. I didn’t rehearse often enough before the contests and as a result, did not do as well as I could. One reason I didn’t practice enough is that I am a world class procrastinator. With hindsight, another reason was that if I won the contest, I would have to speak to a larger crowd. From the 20 at a speech contest to the 75 at an Area Contest to 125 at a Division Contest to 250 at a District Conference. I self-sabotaged and played small.
- Recently, I have been talked to for five to ten minutes during conferences I attended, sharing my story. People would come up to me and share that my story touched them. They would want to buy my book. I still was reluctant to own it.
- In April, I spoke once, giving my first keynote and had a dozen people come up to me and share those same positive thoughts. One of them referred me to another speaking engagement that also happened in April.
- OK … I get it. I OWN it. My story resonates and people need to hear it.
Do you suffer from altitude sickness? Do you want to overcome the fear of success?
- Stop being so modest. Being too modest is as bad as being arrogant.
- Stop being selfish. If your message helps people, don’t keep it to yourself.
- Stop living small. Start living large.
- Just stop it! (see linked video below)
Living the Dream