Leaning In to the Fear

My brain can be a bit of a doomsday thinker.

I always thought that was something I needed to shut off, but I'm realizing it can protective/productive. 

When your brain keeps harping on the same fear, bubbling it up to the surface, what if we made space for it? What if we asked it questions and thanked it for warning us of a potential problem?

Listening to the fear, and acting on what it's warning you about, can be extremely beneficial.

Here's what's making me think about it.

I've always warned business owners distributing their products through a platform that isn't their website: Careful! You don't control this.

And while distributing my fonts through other platforms like Creative Market has led so many of you to my work, it's crucial that you end up here on my site.

Otherwise, my business is not my own.

If the only way for you to purchase my work is through another company, what happens if the company changes (or worse, goes away)?

Well... so does your business. 

And this constant fear has been humming in the back of my mind ever since I started selling fonts — What if Creative Market failed?

That's why I decided to spend 2022 focusing on building and growing my own website and distribution (good thing, too — Creative Market cut its creator commissions another 10% this year, changed its algorithm, and made a bunch of other changes that affected not just my income there, but every other creator I've talked to).

And while I'm not one to talk negatively about other businesses, I say this to reaffirm that the gut feeling you have — even if it feels like fear, which we've been taught is a no no and a vibe we need to resist — can be good.

Fear is protective. And while it's not always completely objective, it is still warning us of very real potential threats (even if they're unlikely).

So here are a few questions to ask your fear if it keeps bringing up the same topic:

 

1. Is this true?

Is it true that if x were to happen, y would be the result? Is the thing your fear is telling you will happen, something that would actually happen?

Is it true that if Instagram shut down your account, you'd have no way of connecting with potential customers/clients?

 

2. Is this likely?

There isn't always a real accurate answer for this. Hard data can help (like, if you're worried about getting cancer, you can look up data surrounding your genetics, diet, drinking habits, lifestyle, etc. that will help you assess your real risk, and make educated changes from there).

It's a little different in business, but everything is data. Look at company reviews, sales history for your own store/site, seasonal changes, engagement. If things are moving in the wrong direction, maybe that little catch in your heart when you think about your business is trying to make you aware of something.

 

3. Is this impactful?

Sometimes, if what we feared actually happened, it wouldn't make as significant of an impact as our fear makes it out to be (it can exaggerate sometimes).

So when that feeling comes up, let's say the bad thing did happen. How much would it actually change?

Would your entire life implode? Would your business fail? Or how about this weird one — Would you feel relief?

It may not be worth your time, energy, and mental space to take preventative action on some things, and that's great. Your protective fear is functioning and that's good, but you're still in the driver's seat.

 

So what's your fear been warning you about? Take some time today to investigate it to see if it's true, likely, or impactful, so you know where action needs to be taken.

 

After all, if you're like me, taking preventative action on what your fear warned you about could actually save you from a lot of trouble down the road.

 

Jen

 

P.S. While you're here, check out the latest family release – Carefree (with a name  and clean lines that might make you forget your fear for a moment)

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