“As an introvert, when I discovered my entrepreneurial soul, I realized businesses are just people working with people to create value in the world. I realized that in order to start my own business I would need to explore new relationships and meet new people.”
After I realized what needs to be done to develop a business, I registered to attend a networking event similar to a mastermind. As I looked around for the cafe where we were all meant to meet, I froze. Time slowed down while my mind sped up and hundreds of questions raced through my thoughts. What if I’m awkward? What if I look or say or do something weird? What if they don’t like me?
I was about to turn around to leave until someone said, “Hi! Are you here for the event?”
“…yeah,” I responded anxiously.
“Great! Write your name on this tag and feel free to have a doughnut. We’ll start as soon as everyone’s here.”
I made nervous introductions to the people in the cafe and helped myself to a doughnut. As more and more people arrived, I tried to wait for easy opportunities to talk to them. After grabbing my third doughnut, the event was about to start. Eventually, I started to feel a little more comfortable. But then we were told we’d have to introduce ourselves…
“Shit,” I thought.
I could feel my chest shrivelling up as my turn approached. But as soon as I started talking, the feeling got better. I told everyone exactly what was on my mind, “I’m an introvert, so I’m really trying hard not to shrivel up in the corner of the room over there.”
Wow. Saying that made it easier, and as I looked around at the calm, curious faces listening to me, one of them said, “So what? You’re here and you’re talking to all of us and we’re listening. What’s the problem?”
Exactly. I realized all those questions in my mind were pointless, and taking the first step made it easier. Always ask yourself, “Why am I here? What do I need? And how can I get it?” The answers give you focus, direction, and clarity to help you move forward. You got this!
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