I once had a mentor tell me he was concerned about my ability to take it to the next level. “Every time you take a few steps forward, I see you take a step back,” he said to me.
I was crushed. Devastated, really. I had failed to be successful all the time, which I thought meant I was a failure all the time.
I know better now.
I started the SheHive on the heels of grad school and a straight 19 months of studying the science of how we learn and grow. After a lifetime of living by my gut, I was thrilled to finally understand the scientific research that supported what I, intuitively, had always known. So much so that I started identifying first and foremost as a scientist - leaving all that “gut” stuff behind.
And then came the SheHive - and an introduction to the “universe.”
Earlier this week I hosted the International Association of Business Communicators - Detroit Chapter at the SheHive for an evening of networking. During a short program I shared the story of how the SheHive came to be and how it took just a few short weeks to get the SheHive from a concept on paper to reality because I’m an Activator. And also because I don’t have a huge fear of failure.
During a Q & A following the presentation one of our guests asked how I was able to overcome the fear of failure. My first thought was, “How long do you have? Can we talk about my entire childhood and a decade of pretty amazing therapy?”
In the end I eeked out a half-answer about being thrown into a multitude of different situations in my childhood - and then invited them all back for the real answer at a later time.
I thought about the question the whole way home. I’m not impervious to failure - it still hurts when it happens. But I’m not afraid of it, at least not as much as I used to be. Why?
Because I value learning above all else. And I value learning about all else because a bold woman didn’t hesitate to share her thoughts with me.