I am awfully pleased for my friend Naomi, who made the front page of Digg yesterday with this post: What to do when you’re scared sh*tless. (Sphinn censored the name by dropping the last word, respectful asterisk and all. How sad is that? It’s also a study in what differentiates a great headline from a mediocre one.)
For those who will read anything that tells you how to get on the front page of Digg, she walks you through that too. She left out several instructions, however. Be smart, funny, relevant and fearless weren’t part of it. Add that stuff and you should have no trouble reproducing her results. Also, put a naughty word in the title. No one can resist that.
If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably scared shitless about something. You’re starting a new business. You’re starting a big project. You’re juggling a day job and a new business and a big project or two, plus a two-year-old. (Oh, wait, that would be me.) You need to make more connections than you’re making. You need more customers and you need those customers to spend more money, and it would be helpful if they were less of a pain in the ass.
It’s possible you also just like stock photography of monkeys.
Being scared is part of the price of admission. If you aren’t scared, you probably should crawl a little further out on that limb. Everything worth doing will scare the shit out of you.
One nice thing about not being 20 any more is I can look at all that fear and say, Oh, right, that’s just fear. It goes away. It may not be comfortable (actually it may feel a lot like being eaten by fire ants), but it does, in fact, go away.
Being remarkable is deeply scary. That’s why big dumb companies do such a crappy job at it. There are too many people involved who have to be willing to tolerate that discomfort, to feel their pulse pounding in their ears and that strange feeling in your scalp that suggests your hair might be starting to fall out.
So what are you doing lately that scares the crap out of you? Drop me a comment, we’ll cheer you on.