Melissa Ford is a sales coach known throughout the world for her amazing sales training programs. She talks about the “terror barrier” that stops us from taking the action we know we need to take.
When we’re faced with something that really scares us, the tendency is to want to curl up in a fetal position and hide, like corporal Timothy Upham in Saving Private Ryan. Viewers get angry about at him for not saving his friend—it would have been so easy for him to intervene!—but I can certainly relate to being paralyzed from fear. Even when it’s not a life or death situation. I’m curled up under my desk—or watching cat videos on Facebook—because I’m supposed to make a cold call, yet I just can’t make myself pick up the phone and do it. Because someone might say “no” to me.
Here’s a trick I learned from Melissa that helps me break through the Terror Barrier: Prove to yourself that you’re not going to die. Making that cold call isn’t about succeeding or failing in making the sale. It’s about proving that I won’t die. In fact, I know that I’m going to succeed at not dying when I make that call. Even in my terrified state, I can see the humor in that challenge. And then by proving I’m not dying, I start really living.
P.S. If anyone wants an audio recording of an interview I did with Melissa called “Why I Love Selling,” please email me.
Steve Johnsen is a marketing strategist, a business coach, and the Founder of Cloud Mountain Marketing. He is also the author of the Amazon #1 best-seller, 5 Easy Steps to Make Your Website Your #1 Employee.