[Cue the slow, intense scary music.]
When watching a suspense thriller, have you ever found yourself shaking your head and maybe even saying silently or out loud, “Don’t do it…don’t go in there!!!”
Usually this is because the person is about to enter a dark space or open a door and you know absolutely nothing good will come of it. Events leading up to the scene – the perilous moment, as it were – give you the sense that something bad is about to go down.
If you’re a scaredy-cat like me, you cover your eyes and wait for the music’s tempo to change because that’s when you know it’s safe to look again. The deed, whatever it is/was, is done.
A recent conversation with a prospect reminded me of this anxious feeling provoked by a suspenseful albeit fictional moment. And it also made me think of the odd relationship you and I have to fear and curiosity especially with regards to money.
Sometimes, what you fear is also the source of your curiosity.
In the case of this prospect, she was afraid of looking at her numbers – not realizing what impact this was having on her financial results.
On one hand, she didn’t want to know what was going on, in general. And she definitely didn’t want to know what was happening with regards to her debt.
And, yet, she had just enough curiosity about how her financial condition could be improved that she scheduled a complimentary assessment call with me.
But I also thought about the duality of fear and curiosity for reasons that hit a little closer to home.
As my coach, accountability partners and close friends can attest, I have a habit of setting pretty aggressive goals for myself and my business. The first quarter of 2016 was no exception. However, I was avoiding doing an important task: tallying my numbers.
I was bummed because I knew, in my head, that I missed my goals and I wasn’t quite ready to face that truth. So, I delayed doing my first quarter analysis.
When I finally got the gumption to plug my numbers into my spreadsheet, I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, I missed my goals, but not nearly by as much as I thought. In fact, February was better than January and March was better than February.
Seeing this made me feel much, much better.
Similarly, by the time my prospect and I reached the end of our assessment call, she also felt better because (a) she discovered her situation wasn’t as bad as she thought, and (b) we identified new solutions she hadn’t considered before.
There’s a reason for the adage: “A picture is worth a thousands words.”
Get Out of Your Head
As scary as it is to face your numbers sometimes, seeing them on paper (or in a spreadsheet) is quite empowering.
Even if what you discover ultimately confirms your worse fear, I think there’s an aspect of that that is rather liberating: it helps you to see more clearly what choices and changes you need to consider making.
Plus, when you enter the unknown – aka that dark space or closed door – you are actually busting a common myth. You know, the one that says what you avoid leads to less pain and change. (Yeah…right.)
No doubt, the duality of fear and curiosity can be scary – leaving you to feel like you are straddling multiple time periods: the past; the present; and the future.
This duality is also quite powerful.
With our fictional character in the suspense thriller, going into the dark unknown will likely lead to no good…and no future.
In real life, though, when you boldly step into the mystery that comes with looking at the numbers you are avoiding, you soon realize that the act of looking and being curious actually holds the key to making some critical and cogent changes. Setting the groundwork for the future you most want.
Here’s a homework assignment for you…a question to ponder:
What if you are afraid of the wrong thing when it comes to getting the financial results you want?
Is there any part of your financial picture that you are avoiding? Are there any numbers that you are afraid of seeing? If so, schedule a complimentary assessment call with me and let’s talk.