I was up at 2:30am last night, sleepless, worrying.
I hired someone new for my business recently. The hire was long overdue. I was drowning in administrative and back office tasks. When I know that I need to focus on other things.
So I hired someone incredible. She started last week. And then last night had a near panic attack. About the responsibility of leading, managing, and continuing to drum up enough business to support this great new hire.
So at 2:30am, I turned on the TV.
I started watching Being Serena few months ago. It was filmed earlier this year. It was about Serena Williams’ comeback to tennis after having her baby. I am always fascinated by how high achieving women balance career, ambition, and family. But I hadn’t watched the whole thing. So I settled into my couch in the dark, my giant dog Rosie snoring away next to me.
As I watched the last few minutes of the last episode. Serena was about to play in the French Open. It was her big comeback. Or at least, she hoped. She had been struggling to balance tennis and her baby. To get her body and mind back to where she had been before. But her goal was to win.
And it was down to a few days of practice on the clay courts in France before the tournament.
She was clearly nervous and frustrated. She was grunting, badmouthing herself. Breaking rackets on purpose and throwing them around. Storming off the court.
They interviewed her coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, afterward.
He said (and I’ll paraphrase):
With increasing demands and increasing pressure, its very common. You feel uncomfortable and nervous. And you don’t know what to do with the feeling. Nobody wants to feel uncomfortable. So one thing to do is to escape. To break the racket and run away.
But breaking the racket and running away won’t ever get Serena Williams to her goal. She would never have a chance to win another Grand Slam tournament that way.
The only thing she could do is keep practicing. Do what she needs to do. Keep moving forward. Be uncomfortable and know that its part of the process.
I turned off the TV. And realized. I need this new person on my team. To move forward in my business. To get closer to my goals.
But part of that next step means I have to be uncomfortable. I have to do things differently than I was doing them before. And I can worry about it, or not. But either way, I can’t sit and stew in my worry. And I can’t run away and hide, paralyzed. I’m going to have to move forward, through the discomfort. There is no other way.
Today I’m still feeling nervous. Right in the pit of my belly. But I’m going to accept that feeling will be here for a few days. Maybe even longer. I’ll bring it along with me as I go through my day. Acknowledge that it’s there. And keep going.
What’s making you uncomfortable? And will you carry it with you as you move forward? Or will you run away and hide from the possibility of achieving your own goals?