This blog is about me and it is about you. When I write the words and the stories you read here, I am taking a risk to share with you thoughts and ideas that come from my heart. And you also take a risk by allowing yourself to consider these ideas and then decide whether or not they might have value for your life.

These kinds of risks are not too difficult to take. As I share some of my own struggles here and offer my perspective, I don’t really know your reaction as you sit in front of your own screen and read. And you can simply walk away and discard the ideas if they are not relevant to you. Neither of us has too much skin in the game, relatively speaking.

I never have too much of a problem taking risks in my business if I see that I have a decent chance of increasing my income. I’m not afraid of the occasional loss. For instance, I ship my jewelry overseas knowing that from time to time a package will be lost and I will have to refund the customer without ever receiving my product back. For me, the reward is worth the risk.

But I do struggle with being vulnerable – I do have a fear of risk when it comes to face to face interactions with people. In this area, I tend to step back from risk and try to play it safe. I know full well that there will be an occasional loss – not everything will be perfect in relationships with other humans. And because of pain I have felt from broken relationships, misunderstandings, or just not being “liked”, my tendency is to withdraw from people in order to avoid the risk of feeling this pain again.

I obviously care more about people than about money, and I’ll consider that a good thing. I’m really not all that afraid of losing money, but I am afraid of losing a friend. So afraid that I would rather forego making a friend, so that there will never be the risk of losing.

This idea is in the forefront of my thoughts as I prepare (mentally and physically) to go to Baltimore for the Transformational Author Breakthrough conference. I know that I will be face to face, interacting with people who are already most of the way to having developed a relationship because of our online interactions leading up to the event. This kind of relationship development is an awkward area for me. I feel different, like a wildly shaped puzzle piece that has no where to fit in the crowd of other pieces.

I over think things like this and then by the time of the event, if I am still going to go (and I am going because the airfare is bought and paid for, by golly), I think what happens is that I am putting out vibes that repel other people – they are vibes that are misinterpreted as “I’m not interested in you,” or “Don’t come too close.” The truth is that I really am interested in being part of the group, and would dearly love to be accepted for who I am, and allowed entrance.

When I go to Baltimore, I am going to focus on letting down my walls and accepting the risk of being my own imperfect but lovable self. I think that being authentically me will work much better in terms of fitting into a group. I will focus on being in the moment and not over thinking (and therefore magnifying) my discomfort. I realize that there may be certain people that I feel more drawn to, or some people who don’t connect with me. I will not overreact to that reality out of my fear of feeling a sting of “rejection”. Instead, I will simply relax and breath and accept all the imperfections of interacting with groups of people.

And just as in my business when I take a calculated risk, I am betting that there will be a pay off  for me in Baltimore.

Written by Tina Gasperson

1 Comment

Jim Grey

There may be others there who fit with your wildly shaped puzzle piece, and you will never find them unless you take the risk to be authentically you.

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