UNBREAKABLE What Would You Do If You Knew You Couldn’t Get Hurt?
By, Jessica Sitomer
Bruce Willis plays David Dunne. A security guard at the local college stadium. His marriage is crumbling, his wife, sleeps downstairs in their son’s room, and David sleeps upstairs with his son.
On his way back home from a job interview in New York, David’s, train malfunctions and derails, killing everyone on board except David. He doesn’t even have a scratch. After the memorial service for the crash victims, David finds a note on his windshield. It’s from a store named “Limited Editions” and the note asks, “Have you ever been sick?” This leads him to the discovery that he is indeed “unbreakable.” He can’t get hurt and he doesn’t get sick.
I’ve titled this article “What would you do if you knew you couldn’t get hurt.” In Unbreakable, it was literal. For you, I’m referring to the non-physical hurt. If rejection couldn’t hurt you. If a “no” couldn’t pierce your heart. If being fired couldn’t damage your self- esteem. How would you pursue your career differently?
In my opinion, after coaching over 1000 people one-on-one, from anywhere from once to 9 years and counting, the lack of action due to FEAR is the number 1 killer of careers.
For you, I answer questions in my blogs, create products, give seminars, coach, all with the desire to give you solutions to overcoming your fears.
I once offered a group of 15 people who’d been making progress, but not as quickly as they liked, (because of fear obstacles) an opportunity to compete for a $100,000 prize that a “successful client” had offered, to the person who showed the most action in one year’s time. When asked who wanted to participate, 100% of the hands were raised. Armed with all the tools I’d given them, they created action plans for the year, eager with anticipation, armed with the taste of competition and the guarantee of a payoff at the end, should they win.
After sharing these outstanding action plans, that would indeed, catapult their careers, I asked where had this “drive” been for the past 6 months they’d been working with me? They laughed, and told me that it was both the love of competition and the knowledge that there was 100K at the end.
Then I informed them, that there was a slight adjustment: No “successful client” had put up 100K. As I looked at the deflated expressions on their faces, I reminded them, the element of competition hadn’t changed. In fact, the prize had not changed, for with each of their action plans, was inherently the opportunity to make 100K upon succeeding. NOW each of them had the possibility of getting the 100K as opposed to just 1.
Do you think that cheered them? Nope. It didn’t matter that I’d just shown them, how they EACH had the opportunity to make 100K, instead of me choosing just one of them. Because there was no longer the “guarantee” that the money would be there in the end, it completely deflated their drive. And then the “reasons and excuses” started…
Well, I’m sorry to tell you this, but there are no guarantees in our business. In fact there are no guarantees in life.
Recently, I went to dinner and to see Avatar with my sister and a friend (both non-pro). We left inspired, excitedly talking about the many ways it moved us. It was a great night! One of those nights that I felt proud to be in this industry, realizing that what we do, causes our family, friends, and complete strangers to be WOWed, to think about “a bigger picture,” to escape the stresses of life for a few hours, to immerse themselves in another world, to have fun. What we do touches so many lives.
But that’s not what my story is about. As we hugged each other goodbye and said what a great night it was hanging out, talking, and seeing a great movie, my sister and I had no idea, that 15 minutes later, we’d get a call from our friend that he’s just been in an accident. We turned our car around and raced to the scene where the police took his statement of the car, that had pulled out onto Beverly Blvd, completely oblivious to his motorcycle, and then took off, as he lay on the ground, the back of his helmet deeply scratched from landing on his head.
With my hands on his back and arm, holding him steady as the police filled out paper work, I could feel him trembling. He was clearly in shock. Then he said, “It’s amazing, a few minutes ago, we were having such a good time, a really great night, and then in a split second (pause) this”
I will continue to give you solutions to battle the fears that you create for yourselves. But I ask you, with life as precious and unpredictable as it is, how long are YOU GOING TO CHOOSE to let them stop you?
1. List 5 actions you want to accomplish in 2010, but you already know fear is going to make it challenging if not impossible.
2. Write down the fears attached to each of the actions.
3. Write down for each action, if a fearless person had to do them: what would they do? What would be their timeline for completing each action? What would be their potential outcome (list everything from specific contacts, to jobs, to the amount of money they would make on the jobs)?