Exactly one week ago I returned from Barbados, after being asked to present at the 3-day Mindful Living 2.0 mindfulness retreat and conference put on by Inspired Journeys out of Toronto, Canada and The Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. of Barbados. This 3-day mindfulness summit featured an international panel of world-class speakers that explored the science and practice of mindfulness in the workplace, sport, and our communities. I presented on Day 1 on the subject Mindfulness in the Workplace and in Leadership - and discussed its impact on stress management, productivity, and relationships at work.
I was beyond nervous being included in this line-up of these accomplished international speakers. Many, many times leading up to the event I considered pulling out - doubting myself, the value of what I had to say, if I knew enough about the topic, if I was "worth" them flying me out.
As usual, none of the many doomsday scenarios created in my mind about the event were realised. My presentation was met with enthusiastic applause, and over the next 3 days people consistently came up to me to say how much my talk impacted them.
All of this to say, if we give ourselves a chance we can talk ourselves out of pretty much anything. If I had listened to my fears, I would have never set foot on that plane, met all these awesome people, or learn that I can hold my own on a panel with international mindfulness leaders. I completely get it - it's scary as hell to leave your comfort zone, to try new things, to meet new people, to fail, to be judged. Growth is scary when you're in the middle of it, when you're not certain of the outcome. But if it's one thing that I've learned in this entrepreneurial, and life, journey is that everything you want is on the other side of fear - if you can just breathe through the uncomfortable parts, and show yourself some compassion along the way.
Much gratitude to all of the phenomenal speakers, coordinators, and attendees I met at this amazing event. You have touched me deeply and in more ways than you can ever know.