I walked out onstage and I could almost taste it… the bitter disappointment of seeing so many empty seats in the room.
I wanted to turn back. I wanted to sit and cry. I wanted to go home and hide under the covers.
Anything but be there on that stage in that moment.
But every single person in the room was counting on me.
And I couldn’t — I wouldn’t — let them down.
Message to Money Live had to go on and not just because it’s a major live event for our company but because we’d put SO much into it.
The whole team at Live Your Message had gone above and beyond anything we’d ever done before.
We were better prepared in terms of performance, content and coaching and our marketing had paid off BIG time.
As a result, we had sold more tickets than ever before — 650 total.
I’d been looking forward to getting on that stage and giving it my ALL. I knew I could deliver massive value — more than 10x the ticket price.
And I was beyond happy, beyond excited to do what I do best — teach people how to start and grow a business that feels good. A successful, profitable business that’s an expression of who they truly are and how they want to show up in the world.
And our participants were excited too. Many of them were flying in from all over the world and it was all going exactly as we’d planned.
Then, disaster struck.
The Coronavirus outbreak started to gain momentum and the Governor of California declared a state of emergency on March 5th — literally 1 day before our event.
In just a few hours, almost 50% of our participants, cancelled…
And I was on an emotional roller coaster with no end in sight.
3 Minutes of Pure Magic
Don’t get me wrong. I was super grateful that we didn’t have to cancel and that our company isn’t in any kind of financial jeopardy.
But I was also deeply worried, anxious and concerned for everyone’s safety.
And no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t shake off that bitter taste of disappointment at the back of my throat.
It felt like everything we’d done — all the hard work, hundreds of hours of planning and executing not to mention the investment we’d put into making this year’s Message to Money Live the best ever — was going down the drain.
But then I stepped onstage on the morning of Day 1 and something magical happened.
Every single person in the audience — all 350 of them — stood up to give me a standing ovation.
They clapped and cheered for 3 full minutes and I didn’t know how to react!
My mind started going berserk and I remember thinking, “I haven’t done anything and I haven’t said a word yet. Why are they clapping like that?”
And then it hit me…
They were applauding me who I was being, not what I was doing.
And for the very first time, on that stage as I listened to the applause go on and on, awkwardly trying to receive the love that was being directed toward me, the lesson that I’ve been trying to fully absorb and embrace pretty much my entire life, finally landed…
Who I am and what I stand for is WAY more important and more valuable than anything I could ever do or say.
Beyond Anything I Could Have Imagined…
I went on to give the performance of a lifetime that weekend.
And the energy, courage and inner strength to give my tribe everything I had to give even through the disappointment, worry and anxiety…
It started in those first few magical minutes, on that first day when I felt so appreciated and so loved for who I am as a human being.
It made me see that more than anything else, people need me to be me and so I practiced staying in my heart and connecting with them from the heart…
And the response was beyond anything I could have imagined.
Despite everything that happened, we made a massive impact on everyone who chose faith over fear and walked into that room, which led to well over 7-figures in sales of our flagship mentorship program.
And what I realized from that experience is that it’s always possible to create a “micro-environment” of hope, opportunity and deep interconnectedness no matter what’s going on in the world..
And when you’re fully present, on purpose and aligned, your students, clients and customers…
Will see you, value you and flock to you.
Seeing the Gifts in The Viralapocalypse
The truth is that the whole world is kinda upside down right now and many of us are feeling more unsteady, more uncertain and yes — more fearful — than we ever have before.
Personally, I’ve seen a whole month of major speaking engagements and appointments disappear, just like that.
But I’m also seeing the gifts in this crisis I’m affectionately calling the “viralapocalypse”…
The gifts of time, space and perspective.
And each of these gifts is beyond priceless because right now, as the world pauses to gather resources and overcome this…
Everything that isn’t truly important is just falling away.
And now’s the time to ask some critical — potentially game-changing — questions.
What do I really want in my life and in my business?
Is who I’m being who I truly want to be?
Am I being deeply nurtured by my work or is it exhausting me?
Am I 100% aligned with what I do or is there a pivot on the horizon?
I call these “shadow questions” because they’re always there at the back of our minds and we’re good at ignoring them when we’re busy and hustling and life feels… full.
And frankly, it’s because most of us are afraid of the answers.
But I’m seeing this as a time to reflect on what we really want so we can finally let go of all the extras…
The things we don’t really care about, the things that keep us overwhelmed and confused and stuck in an endless cycle of frantic busyness.
In a way, it’s like we’re returning to simple… returning to what truly matters in life. And business.
So, I recommend that you take a deep breath and answer those questions and I encourage you to be brutally honest with yourself.
Because when all of this is over, when everything is said and done, I know a LOT will change but something will remain the way it’s always been…
People are drawn to people who are 100% aligned with who they’re being in the world.
People feel connected to people who are 100% aligned with their values, and what they stand for.
And right now what I stand for in this moment is choosing faith over fear. Creating a contagion of strength, resilience and courage…
Cause, as I learned in that room when 350 people stood up to clap and cheer and show their love and appreciation before I said a single word…
All that really matters right now is being fully present, aligned with who you are and letting your heart guide you.
All that matters is you staying in the room, no matter what.
I’ve come to see now more than ever that life is a gift meant to be enjoyed. Not something to be endured or suffered through, but truly deeply enjoyed.
So here’s my gift to you…
I’d like to invite you to join us in a special conversation on Choosing Faith Over Fear: How to Stay Calm and Steady While Growing Your Business in Today’s Climate.
It’s happening this Tuesday, March 24 from 2-3:30pm PT and you can join us here (no opt-in required): https://liveyourmessage.com/faithoverfear
During this free session, we’ll jam on:
- The 10 common thinking and feeling traps that increase stress and cloud your judgment
- Tools to defuse fear and worry so you can stay productive, make good decisions and sleep well at night
- Relaxation skills to create calm when you need it most
- How to maintain a rich and meaningful life and business through this crazy time
- Why we’re feeling afraid and responding in ways that include toilet paper hoarding and obsessing on news reports and so much more
EPM Coach Susan Liddy will be joining me on the call. Susan specializes in helping entrepreneurs achieve emotional mastery so they can create rich, meaningful successful businesses.
She’s a Professional Certified Coach with a Masters Degree in Psychology and she has a Graduate Certificate in human behavior and peak performance (which means she definitely knows what she’s talking about :-))
For the past 20 years, Susan has coached thousands of small business owners to overcome fear, take motivated action and accomplish goals that include becoming well-known speakers, published authors and successful business owners.
Simply mark your calendars for Tuesday, March 24 from 2-3:30pm PT and join us here (no opt-in needed): https://liveyourmessage.com/faithoverfear
One little thing before you go…
How do YOU plan to stay calm and carry on during this strange and unprecedented time? How do you plan to enjoy this precious, beautiful gift called life?
We all need love, support and community right now so please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.
I read and reply to each one 🙂