on anxiety + creativity

10 years ago when I first started my coaching practice, I would be anxious and fearful before every single client session.


“What if they ask me a question I don’t know the answer to?”

“What if I freeze and don’t know what to say?”

“What if I fart during the session?”


My mentor Alisa gave me the advice that is so wise and such a practice to master: Be present. Breathe. Stop thinking ahead so much. The hour will be over soon no matter what, so take it one step at a time. You got this.


And I did have it. Sure, there were bumps and learning curves along the way, but every time I showed up for a session, I got to be present and learn from the person on the other side of the conversation - and in the process, develop my skills and confidence.


I also managed to get through all those sessions without farting out loud. (Ok, there miiiiight have been the occasional leak of air, just sayin.)


And now? I’m not anxious or fearful before client sessions. There might be a twinge of nervous excitement when starting with a new person, but overall it’s invigorating and an easeful process.


But those anxious, fearful feelings still pop in.


Now, it’s for other things. Like leading a room of a hundred people through a dance break. Or performing an improvised dance set in a show at New York Comedy Club. (that just happened on Sunday! ahh!)


If you would’ve told me 10 years ago that ^that would be my new fear edge at some point, I wouldn’t have believed you. It was hard enough for me to be in a room one on one with a person, nevermind on stage in front of many.


That’s how we grow.


Fear dances with us until we outgrow its current form, then it leaps ahead to the next point of expansion, calling us forward to dance in this new place.


Once we master one point, the fear moves forward.


We can follow it or we can stay put.


When we stay put, that’s when frustration, flatlining, boredom, and depression can set in.


So if you’re fearful of your next step, take it as a good sign.


It means you’re on a creative path.


And I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.


to feeling the fear and dancing anyway,

Jess sig.png

p.s. I talk alllll about fear and anxiety and the winding creative path in this recent interview with The Don’t Panic Project. Check it out!