Feb 21, 2010


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I got a surprise package in the mail today from Harmony Walton, owner of Bridal Bar, who is is one of the most genuine, giving people in the wedding business.  I can always count on her to lift me up and tell it like it is.  Inside was this book.   When I get a new book or a magazine, I immediately flip through, usually starting in the middle, just to look at pictures.   I’m not sure what that says about me, but I never start from the beginning.

The first page I flipped to…

To name your fears is to destroy them.

What are you afraid of?


Making decisions?

Being alone?

Losing your love?


Losing your job?

Having no money?


Not having it all?


Transmute fear to energy.

Think positive.

You could be –

Starting over.

Making another decision.

Living peacefully alone.

Finding new love.

Accepting change.

Beginning a new career.

Living more frugally, harmoniously, graciously.

Understanding life and the infinity of the spirit.

Moving forward to a new phase.

Currently listening to Let Go // BarlowGirl

Fear is the biggest thing holding you back from living your best life – the life you know you should be living right now in this moment.  I will admit, I am at a crossroads in my life right now.   My fears have been bubbling to the surface lately as if they mean to stare me in the face and draw swords.  Really sharp, shiny, menacing swords.   God has recently shown me path I need to take and I’m fighting it.  I know I am.  I think I’m not good enough, too busy, too broken to follow it.  I fear how it will change me.  How crazy is that!?  I know full-well that God will protect me with every step, but fear grabs ahold of me and builds massive brick walls around me daily.  It feels like that, but the funny thing is… fear isn’t tangible.  It’s just a feeling floating around in space.  Yet, somehow it paralyzes us.  Nod your head, raise your hand, give me an “amen!” or something if you feel paralyzed or in any way help back by fear.  Why are you letting it rule you?   How much does it rule you?   If you can challenge yourself to answer those questions clearly, I promise that the simple act of defining those answers will motivate an active change in your life.  I’m not at all saying I do this well all the time or that it is easy.  I’m able to talk about this because I’m constantly wracked with fear and work actively to fight it.  I get it because I’m there with you.

Taking the blinders off brings awareness.  Our blinders keep us in our safe little bubble, not challenged or stretched, and not moving forward.

Stop right now. If you are taking the time to read this post, you can take the time to pick up your pen and write this down…

I am afraid of ____[insert fear- no natter how silly, huge, irrational, or crazy it sounds]____ because ____[insert worst-case scenario outcome… the absolute worst mental picture of the scene that would play out if this fear was realized]____.

If I wasn’t afraid of ____[insert aforementioned fear]____ I would ____[what do you know deep down that you are capable of doing or being without this fear holding you back?]____.

If this fear didn’t hold me back, I would feel ____[What would it feel like? Freedom? Light? Clear?  Yeah. I thought so.]____.

Just thinking these answers doesn’t count, folks.   You can burn, toss, or shred your paper after this.  Merely thinking them means that the fear is still floating around somewhere, taking up precious mental space that you could be using to move on.  You could perform the simple act of putting your thoughts on paper by using that pen there… and thereby igniting the flame that may fire you up to live that life you know is right at your finger tips.  There is power in small action.  I’m harping on this because every time I do it, I see the immense power in it.  Just do it.  If it doesn’t help, I’ll give you … well, nothing.   If it doesn’t help, you didn’t really do it.

For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship… Romans 8:15

When we feel fear –that thing inside of us that wells up and makes us want to crawl into a hole, the butterflies, the pit in our stomach– it’s a SIGN!  The big glowing neon sign reads “step into me”.   Yes, it seems counter-intuitive, but fear is a sign that there’s something there worth conquering.  Step into your fear.  Feel it.  Move towards it with care and open eyes.  Fear is meant to make us question our actions and weigh risk.  Fear is an opportunity.

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

These are actual pages from my MTH notebook.  I never intended to share them, but in the spirit of naming fear, I’m laying them out for you here.  Writing these words –finding the right words– was crazy hard.  I could have just put “I’m afraid of failing” but that’s not really getting to the heart of it.  What are you afraid of failing at?

What does the simple act of naming our fears really do? I came back from the first leg of the MTH Tour with clarity.  After 80 hours of self-reflection in 10 jam-packed days, it was like a mac truck hit me.  I got back and that Monday with a massive list that I was determined to conquer ASAP.  Once you find clarity, you have no choice but to act on it.   It was like I finally had all the puzzle pieces in one place and I just had to get them put together.   I went off the radar for about a week doing the following:

First thing Monday morning, I declared it “the week of getting structured and conquering loose ends.”  We redid the office, cleared the clutter and started over.

I hired a new accountant, poured through financial records and prepared the business taxes.  I am not a numbers person.  This does not come easy for me.  I am the queen of “Sorry if this is a dumb question, but…”

When I started working in the wedding business, I started with Bliss Event Group, my wedding production company. While we still have a few select weddings on the books, as the magazine has grown, I’ve purposely phased this business out over time.  All of our accounts and legal documents were formed through Bliss, which has become confusing since we don’t operate from that business very much compared to others. So, I formed Lara Casey Media as our holding company for Bliss, Southern Weddings® (<— love that little guy) and Lara Casey Reps.  No, it’s not a new company.  It’s just the house they all live in.  This has helped so much lately with accounts and streamlining our brand.

I streamlined Twitter accounts. I got rid of the @WeddingRep twitter account and changed it to @LaraCaseyReps. I started to feel like “WeddingRep” was impersonal and I don’t just work with wedding professionals. I also got rid of about 5 other twitter accounts that were just sitting there doing nothing. This may sound like a tiny change, but it worked wonders to clarify our brand. I made clear goals for each twitter account as far as the audience I was targeting and content.   Think on this: if a new client happened on your twitter page (or Oprah, for that matter… you just never know), what would your first 10 tweets say about you?  Does your bio just say “photographer” or nothing at all?   What does your picture say about you and the experience your clients will have if they hire you? This stuff matters and if you think your clients aren’t reading your twitter feed, you’re wrong. Twitter is meant to be authentic and somewhat spontaneous, but for business use you also have to have a mission for the content you are putting out. Twitter is essentially micro-blogging. Also, remember that the number of twitter followers you have doesn’t mean much. They loyalty and interaction you have with your “Tribe” of twitter followers is exponentially valuable.

I booked all of us tickets to NY that weekend after I got back to take Katharine to Kleinfeld to see Randy and to meet with creative business consultant, Sean Low.   I was ready to invest in someone giving us a solid opinion on our business structure.  Much more about our trip to NY and our meeting with Sean in the next post. That day deserves its own series.

I toiled day and night to clear my inbox.  Many times “clearing our inbox” really means making a lot of decisions we don’t want to make yet.  Instead of returning emails we get on Twitter, facebook, and let distraction rule us.  Writing the email really takes no time at all.  Writing 100 a day on average takes a lot of time.  Wavering on decisions that hold us back from replying to those emails can take an eternity.  Like we always say around here… It is better to make a decision you are 80% sure of than no decision at all.  It’s OK to fail as long as you committed.

On a personal note, I committed to more time in the gym, more time in my Bible, less time working at night and more time doing little things for my husband to show him that –even when I’m insanely busy– he is my first priority.

I started to live my ideal day: waking up earlier, inspired environment, feeding my soul with goodness from the first moment I open my eyes, taking time to do the things that make me feel most alive and whole, and so much more.  This is a principle we teach in the MTH Intensives.  Blog post coming soon.

Most significantly, our Monday morning huddle that week was, to put it mildly, epic. I told Katharine and Emily the roles in our company that I was grooming them for and we clarified job descriptions. I’ve never seen them as focused and fired up as they are now. I realized I wasn’t tapping into even half of their potential and needed to give them more responsibility. No, I won’t tell you exactly what that means now, but you will certainly find out in time. They are brilliant women. Spend an hour with them; you’ll see.

There are 1000 other things, but my laundry list may bore you to tears.  Let’s just say, life around here is more focused and, as a result, sweeter.  It was great before, but great can always be improved.  Great has been re-defined in our office.

Doing all of those things above may seem simple and, despite barely sleeping for a week because I just wanted it all done, it was.  It was a breeze. Why?  Because I had done the work beforehand to clarify my fear and then make an active plan based on what I discovered.  Clarity creates conviction which creates action. Clarifying my fear was not easy.  At all.  As I wrote in my post last week, I spent ten days writing, crying, laughing, getting angry and getting real about my life. The veil was lifted.  While that was a luxury to have that time, I know the power of even taking 10 minutes to read this post and write those answers above.  Every time I did it, in every city, I got clearer and clearer.  Layer by layer, fear started to peel back.

No matter where you are in life or how overwhelmed you may be reading this post and thinking of those fears, just know that your fears do not define you.  You are not your thoughts.  You are not your fears.  Simon T Bailey always says, “Fear isn’t final.”  So true.  Replace fear with love and you will unlock more confidence and humble power than you can imagine.  What does that mean in a practical sense?   I leave in a few hours for Altanta to speak at The Simple Plan workshop tomorrow.  I realize this is going to sound silly, but I’m scared to give a PowerPoint presentation.  Put me in front of a crowd of thousands with no script and I’m all good.  Give me structure and I start to freak out.  Why do you think I work for myself?  So, in preparing, I’ve focused on how I can impart knowledge and really listen to each attendee rather than what they will think of me.  I’m replacing fear (paralyzing) with love (action).

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18

Oddly enough, 90% of the people I have met on the road are afraid of success. We are afraid of what the greatness within us will command us to do. What percentage of your potential are you functioning at right now?  Imagine if you were at even 70%.  Crazy thought, right?

A favorite quote that my bff sent me one day last week when I was having a rough day…  “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” – Marianne Williamson

OK, off to pack and head to the airport.  I’m traveling solo this week to Hotlanta and Nashvegas.  Thanks for listening and taking this journey with me, friends.

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. John 14:27


So, what are you afraid of? Name your fears. Destroy them. I know you can.


  1. Kate Miller Events on February 21, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    Again – THANK YOU! How I wish MTH could come to SF or NorCal! I feel as though I owe you a BIG hug!

  2. Joy Lengyel on February 21, 2010 at 3:57 pm

    LOVE this. As always, thank you for sharing — you are an inspiration, Lara Casey! 🙂

  3. Danielle Cococcia on February 21, 2010 at 4:00 pm

    Every time I read your blog I finish and want to conquer the world!! You are an inspiration!

  4. Estella Taylor on February 21, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    I’ve never commented on your blog before out of fear of being judged. I just wanted to let you know that every blog post on your blog has really struck a chord with me because it seems like you are talking directly to me each time. Almost as if we are dealing with the same things right at the exact same time. My fear was that if I commented, it would seem fake and that’s not how I want to come off so I just kept everything to myself. I was unable to afford a ticket to the MTH2010 Intensive in Los Angeles but I just wanted to come here today to say THANK YOU for your openness. It takes a lot of courage to share as much as you have and it has really helped me not only in business but in my personal life as well.

    From the bottom of my heart, Thank you!


  5. Latrice - Opulent Couturier on February 21, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    Thank you for this post, it really puts alot of my thoughts into perspective since MTH2010 in Nashville.
    I am taking action on alot of things right now!!

  6. Valerie Metrejean on February 21, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    I am so inspired by/proud of you!! I think we all look at you as a role model and assume you have it all together, like you have nothing left to learn but the way you constantly challenge yourself and encourage growth is amazing to see. I learn so much from you. And this post, just like the rest is chock full of practical ways your readers can grow too. I am once again, recognizing what my fears are and identifying how they have held me back. I didn’t even realize what it was holding me back from until I wrote it out. I am pushing through it!! Thank you thank you thank you!!

  7. Ashley D. on February 21, 2010 at 6:07 pm

    This may be one of my favorite of all your posts. And I think I needed it a lot tonight! Thank you for such wonderful wisdom — girl, you have a way with words!!!

  8. Stephanie Osborne on February 21, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    “Fear is an opportunity.” AMEN! Its funny, maybe I am just one of those people but it seems like I always find so many parallels in your journey. It sounds so simple but I read over the part about ‘living your ideal day’ and I guess I just never thought of it that way. We really do have a brand new opportunity EVERY morning to have it all. Have fun in Atlanta, cannot wait to see you in Vegas. HELLO AIRHORNS!

  9. Laura Reaux on February 22, 2010 at 12:05 am

    Lara, you inspire me in such a huge way! This is such a great post. Writing those things down felt so great. Love that quote by Marianne Williamson, by the way. I actually posted part of it on my old blog over two years ago: https://laurareaux.typepad.com/blog/2008/01/flourish.html Really looking forward to chatting soon!

  10. Phyllis Cheung on February 22, 2010 at 12:09 am

    Thank you Lara! Thank you for being such an inspiration, for guiding us, and teaching us how to conquer the world by overcoming our fears. It’s been a little over a month since MTH2010 Los Angeles and I am still amazed at how much I have accomplished in that short amount of time.

  11. Rosaura Sandoval on February 22, 2010 at 1:17 am

    Wow! This is so what I needed to hear! Thank you for sharing your fears and making them an opportunity. I got out my pen and wrote down my fears. It is powerful and liberating. Can’t wait to meet you at WPPI. I really wish MTH could come to SF too. 🙂

  12. Denise Lynn Woods on February 22, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    I think this affects alot of people and it’s hard to admit it. But I’m here to say that I am one of those people. I’m learning day by day how to conquer some of these fears. Thank you for the enlightening post!

  13. Anna Lucia Richardson on February 22, 2010 at 10:32 pm

    Lara…you are a continued inspiration. Thank you!

  14. Julie Stephens on February 23, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    You’re so right. Have you read Breaking Intimidation by John Bevere? From reading this post I think you might enjoy it.

  15. bridalbar on February 24, 2010 at 12:47 pm

    You. Rock. Lara. Such a great post! I swear, even when people try to give you something, you find a way to give to them right back. Changing the world girl and we’re all listening!

  16. Melissa Hayes on February 24, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    such an inspiring post Lara! really needed to read this and write down my fears again.

  17. ashley bugg on February 26, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    wow. this really drove home with me. God totally placed you in my life this morning. I spent time in His Word this morning and as I read, I was reminded that I need to “ask boldly, believingly & without second thought” [James 1 (the messge)]. That, coupled with what I’ve read in this post this morning,has helped me to realize the real power that God gives us. To free us from our fears and to ask Him to work through us to accomplish the desires that He has engraved on our hearts.
    thank you for speaking such truth in this post. I’m grateful for you today.

  18. Carissa on February 27, 2010 at 11:03 am

    I’m a dreamer, I’ve always been a dreamer. But I’ve come to the point where I feel like I’m tired of just dreaming, tired of wishing for things and hoping for things. I really want to make things happen (no pun intended hehe). Just like everyone has been saying, I feel like your posts are priceless because you have the courage to say what many of us are thinking. I’ve been too afraid to do just that and I’m ready to walk through those fears and conquer them. I’m ready to learn, grow, spread the wealth, and believe in myself and I know MTH will definitely help me do that. Thanks Lara, for everything.

  19. Kirsten on February 27, 2010 at 11:14 am

    *Very* inspiring post!! And the quote from Marianne has been a favorite of mine for quite some time now. Wish that fit on twitter 🙂

  20. DeNeitra on February 27, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Hi Lara – I absolutely admire how you’re willing to put so much of yourself on this blog. You share intimate details of your growth, your fears, struggles, faith in God, and the love you have for your craft. It’s inspiring and rejuvenating to see someone who has become as successful as you are be willing to give so much back. One of my favorite scriptures is Luke 12:48 and it reads, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” I feel as if you embody that scripture, and I truly thank you for that.

    I’m a simple girl from Southern California who had the dream of starting an event planning company. I followed my heart, I stepped out on faith, and now I own the company that I dreamed of. God reminds me everyday of how awesome and faithful he is by continuing to place remarkable people on my path – hopefully, someday our paths will cross.

    I would absolutely love to win a scholarship to Making Things Happen in Las Vegas! It would provide me with the opportunity to surround myself with like-minded, passionate, driven and esteemed event professionals who, like myself are on the journey of, not arriving, but bettering themselves at their craft.

  21. Sally Clark on February 27, 2010 at 1:13 pm

    I think big and dream big, but sometimes my brain gets in the way. I also dread details and I am a master procrastinator. I am ready … ready to live a full, balanced life ON FIRE. I’m ready to step into myself, lean into the fear and live my best life … right here, right now. I would be honored to attend either intensive, and thank the First Class of Making Things Happen for making this possible … this couldn’t come at a better time for me and for many other people who are ready to shine.

  22. diana radoi on February 27, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this post! It is definitely something I needed to hear! God is using you in so many ways through this post…and know that you are not alone!
    We are all here to help and build each other up!
    May God continue to bless your life with all that you need and heart desires!

    ps. in regards to the mth2010 I would love to join the las vegas intensive class, or denver if that doesn’t work out! I feel like so many things have happened this year, and am still unsure of what direction to take, go, etc! and on top of that, I moved to a whole new state and feel like I have to start all over again…and I just dont know where to begin! I think if I’m able to attend through the scholarship, that I’ll be able to learn, grow, have a clear sense of direction…and so much more!
    Thank you so much for this opportunity!

  23. kelsy on February 27, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    lara, i feel as though i know you already! your blog is so motivating and really builds confidence within me. yes, we all have fears. tackling them at your MTH intensive is something i would love to experience! i just finished my first year full-time in the photography world and feel as though igniting the fire and living the MTH lifestyle is a direct result of your intensive. not that we can’t light our own fire, but opening up in a circle of like-minded individuals and growing together is something that i think would greatly benefit me. i’m a hands-on, relationship-oriented woman. combine that with my desire to challenge myself and take on every opportunity as a learning experience and you’ve got a dangerous combination! thank you for sharing your business sense and genuine sentiment for others in the business!! we are blessed to have you 🙂

  24. Jennifer Alvarez on February 27, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    I can say that throughout my life I have never been afraid. I have always thought of myself as fearless. That I can go up against anything and make it. That through my faith, family, and friends, I would be OK. But then again throughout my life I have never taken a true risk. Till now. Now I’m building a business that I have dreamed of since I was 10 yrs old and I’m afraid to verbalize it. Every step I go to build this business makes it more real and makes me more afraid. Mostly that the more real it becomes the more in love with this I become and that I could lose it all. I would like to attend the MTH2010 Las Vegas intensive because I believe that being able to speak with people who have started off just like me will fire me up to push myself and my family to the next step. I deeply appreciate this opportunity and if selected will make the most of this great learning experience.

  25. Alicia Johnson on February 28, 2010 at 11:57 am

    WOW!!! WOW a million times over… I’m headed to WPPI this next week and would love to join MTH2010 Las Vegas! But more than that I’d like to thank you for helping me think even more about abolishing my fears and getting my camera back in the game. It’s crazy how “life” and the “real” job takes control sometimes… but thanks for your inspiration to get my dream back on track!

  26. Wendy on March 1, 2010 at 11:57 am

    Reading this blog post brought tears to my eyes…I see so much of myself among your words, Lara! Thank you for being so transparent but more importantly, for providing the mirror! The spirit of hospitality and helps flows through my veins…it’s the basis for the mission of my company. I made a decision 2 weeks ago to take the next 2 months to really get focused about creating the core and foundation of my brand. Two weeks have come and gone and I am a little closer but not nearly as close as I would like to be. I’m stuck in so much gunk and sludge that I’m taking baby steps…and I need to take more risk. I believe attending MTH2010 Las Vegas would help me to get over the hump…to get moving towards giving the service I want to give my clients. Thanks for being such a great inspiration, Lara!

  27. Katie on March 1, 2010 at 11:58 am

    Wow, Lara… thanks for this incredible moment on a gray morning. After a discouraging weekend of health struggles and challenges with my sweet husband, I took time this morning to name my fears specifically and dream about what it would be like to live in their absence. God lightened my heart today and I’m incredibly encouraged. Would LOVE to attend MTH Denver with y’all and explore further the whisperings of creativity God’s been gifting me for a while now–too long to have not acted on them yet. Many thanks for your being faithful to His call and thereby gifting so many others.

  28. Evelyn on March 1, 2010 at 1:10 pm

    Maybe it was a little divine intervention, my finding your blog today — and this post in particular — through a RT on Twitter (thanks januarynewbanks!) It’s hard to find the words to explain the impact that your words had on me. I wrote down my fears. There were so many, even though I wouldn’t consider myself a fearful person. Perhaps fear has a funny way of disguising itself to slowly chip away at your confidence, motivation, determination…

    Late last summer, in the middle of planning my wedding, I lost the fear and took the plunge into starting my own business. Now? I’m paralyzed with fear to actually take those next steps to make it a success. I use the excuse that I don’t know what I’m doing and then sit there, magically waiting for something to happen to provide me that knowledge. Perhaps it’s something like the MTH intensive. If I had the money, I would be in Denver, front and center. I hate that I never seem to have enough to help me do the things I know I need, but I’m not doing the things I need to make money and reward myself with a better, happier life…what a vicious cycle.

    I can put all of my worries, my hopes and my fears in God’s hands and just keep working at it, one step at a time. I have true faith that He helps share my burden. It’s all about perspective…and not allowing myself to always give so much value to my fears, to use them as a tool to get what I truly want from life.

    Thank you for this very honest, very real post. Thank you to the other people who left comments. It’s overwhelming to have a gentle reminder that I’m not alone in my fears. I hope we all can work through them and reach our highest potential!

    Thank you, Lara. My Monday just got a little brighter because of you.

  29. April Foster on March 1, 2010 at 1:20 pm

    “To affect change, you are going to have faith beyond any facts you are presented with. Remember: change is hard, progress a process and determination a necessity.” -Seth Godin
    This quote is on a paper affixed to desk, however, I still have not been able to digest it. I am working everyday on having faith beyond the facts I am presented with and believe participating in a MTH2010 session is what I need to push me though this doubt and move forward.
    If chosen for a scholarship, I promise my determination and desire to be something great will shine through. I promise that I will make the most of each an everything I am taught. I promise to find that faith without needing the facts.

  30. April Foster on March 1, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    P.S. I am not picky – if I am chosen, I will make either destination work.

  31. Skip on March 1, 2010 at 1:39 pm

    2010 is a big year for me. BIG. I kicked off my photography career at the beginning of 2009 and it was a crazy roller coaster ride. I still consider myself a rookie to the photography industry. This first year of starting my business has been amazing. The impossible became possible and the Lord blew me away at how he provided. I truly experienced moments that were beyond myself.

    Why do I want to attend MTH? Because the possible is slowing beginning to seem as impossible. I need to push through in this season in my life. 2010 could be a really defining year for my business. How can I better brand myself, how can I get creative with aggressively moving forward while trying to be as resourceful as possible, and what holds me back?

    What do I want to make happen? As I’ve mentioned, 2010 is a big year. I want it to be one of the best! It doesn’t have to be financially speaking per se. I think that a lot of what happens in 2010 will define the course of the many years to come for Skip Hopkins Photography.

    Submitting for MTH @ Las Vegas.

    Thanks for giving us this opportunity!

  32. Jessica Hill on March 1, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    From the moment I found your blog I have been inspired to do something that I love. The problem was that I was having a hard time defining exactly what that was. After the first time I read your blog I, and reading many different posts several times over, I was transfixed by your business savvy, creativity, vulnerability, and fearlessness. All of these things started to help me define what I want to do. One of the first realizations that I had, as a result from reading about the Making Things Happen Tour, was that I wanted to do something that I wanted to research and learn about everyday. Although this may sound un-profound the idea completely transformed my thinking. I suddenly realized that I did not have to change the core of whom I am in order to do something. It is who I am that determines what God made me to do. My passions and desires are there because God put them there. I am passionate about business; because of the doors business can open for you and for others in so many different arenas. I am passionate about helping people to become the very best they can be personally and in the business world. Reading your blog helped me to define and to realize what I want to do. I want to learn how to brand companies. Branding helps people become better both personally and in the business world. The right kind of brand can launch a business into successes unknown. I grew up and work in the oil industry as well, and I want to learn how to take the kind of personal business branding that is being applied to the wedding industry and apply it to the oil industry. While at the same time I have fallen in love with the wedding photography industry and love every aspect of it, even though I am yet unable to capture beautiful pictures myself. Two weeks ago an amazing opportunity came along when one my photographer friends asked me to help him brand and market his company. He wants to break into the luxury wedding marketing and wants and needs help doing so. At the Denver Making Things Happen Intensive I want to learn how I can learn to brand and how I can help make my friends photography business successful in a highly competitive market.

  33. Britt Hilgers on March 1, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    My name is Britt and I have been afraid for most of my life. But you wouldn’t know it if you talked to me. Growing up, I was scared of everything: speaking in front of people, making friends, raising my hand in class… anything that required me to put myself out there, I shied away from. But I’ve always known that in my heart, I had a personality that was screaming…aching to get out. I had a wildly creative side that I suppressed for the first 12 years of my life. Until one day, I couldn’t take standing in the background anymore. And even though I was scared out of my mind, I made a decision…I made the commitment to myself to NEVER let my fears get in the way of achieving my goals and living my best life possible. I know… pretty deep for a 6th grader… But when you’re a quiet, shy kid, you tend to live in your own head a lot. So needless to say, I had thought a ton about why I wasn’t happy with the person I was becoming… or rather the person that I WASN’T becoming… The person I wanted to be in my heart… So one fateful day after school in 6th grade, I took an insanely deep breath (more like 2), walked into the music room on my elementary school campus, and auditioned for the school musical. The quiet girl who not only didn’t speak in class–but never even sang in music class, walked into that audition room in front of 50 people, and belted out a song that had people in the audience speechless. They didn’t know what hit them: “Whoa. Is that Brittany? I didn’t know she could sing…” Well. I knew I could sing. But I was scared out of my mind to share that part of myself… even though I knew in my heart that singing and performing was what gave me the most joy. But thankfully, I was a very self-aware little 12 year-old. I knew that if I ever wanted a chance to be an openly creative person and performer, I needed to set aside my fears and just do it. And I’m really glad I did… Because the next day when the director posted the cast list for the Musical… I saw my name… at the top… as the LEAD. They casted me, the little quiet girl, as the lead in the school musical. I couldn’t believe it. And looking back, I was only able to achieve it because of the decision I made–that simple, but oh so difficult decision to audition–The decision that changed the entire trajectory of my life. I was still scared out of my mind, but I at least *started* to let my creative side out, and in turn enable my true personality shine.

    But my fears didn’t just magically go away after that audition. I have diagnosed anxiety disorder, and anyone else who has it too knows that it will always be a part of my life. I can’t help that. But what I do know is this: I WANT TO KICK ASS AT LIFE. And I’ll be damned if I’m going to let fear get in my way. Currently, I work on a television show in the writer’s office as an assistant. I do research for episodes and get to be around creativity all day. I love my job. And I am able to do what I do today because of the decision I made 15 years ago as sixth grader at Alma Elementary. But currently, I am still no where near reaching my potential. Every year, I try to get a little more brave, a little more gutsy… I try to take more risks… be more open-minded… And generally I have lived up to that yearly goal… but it’s not enough. I don’t want to just “live up” to anything. I want to go beyond just being capable. 2010 is a going to be a whoooole different story for me. I want to blow the doors off 2010 with ideas blazing. I am a writer. I am a strong female with a unique voice, who wants nothing more than to be a leader in my industry, and an inspiration to other women, and to other people who experience the same challenges associated with anxiety disorder,

    My life changed last July when I started my wedding blog, http://www.BowieBride.com. Sure, my site is mainly geared toward wedding folk, but for me personally, it has enabled me to once and for all express the true ME. In the time since I launched my site, I have not only found a public forum to share the details of our offbeat wedding, but somehow this website turned into something bigger… something with a goal much larger than just my wedding. Bowie Bride is all about being your true self… flying your freak flag at all times… life-living and wedding-planning that starts with your personality, and not with some generic checklist. I have enormous plans for my career… in all aspects… expanding BowieBride.com, feature writing, TV writing, running my own show, being a feminist advocate and a gay-right activist, and overall spreading my lifestyle advice to fellow freak flag fliers. I am a special woman. I have known that in my heart my entire life. But because of my anxiety disorder, my head hasn’t always allowed me to fully realize that potential. BUT NOT ANYMORE. 2010 is here. And I’m ready to start living my best life possible.

    It would be a true honor and a thrill to have the opportunity to participate in Making Things Happen in 2010 in Las Vegas on March 7. My friend Dana LaRue got her world rocked at your LA seminar… your workshop gave her that extra something… that extra inspiration to propel her brand even further beyond the big dreams she already had for it. And we all know that the Broke-Ass Bride was already pretty fired up on her own…so that’s saying a lot about how amazing your workshop truly is. I honestly believe there are no limits to what we as humans are capable of achieving. I’ve got that fire in me, and I KNOW that if given the chance to participate in your workshop, my life would be forever changed… And nothing would give me more satisfaction.

    So I’m ready! FIRE ME UP! 🙂

  34. Eve on March 1, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    Lara! Where have you been my whole life? Your beautiful words have touched my heart so much that I have spent many nights in front of the computer screen with tears streaming down my face feeling like you are speaking my fears out loud! I never imagined so many people had the same feelings I am having about so many things and I want to talk to those people! I want to hear what is in their hearts so that I can tell them what is in mine. The buring desire to face my fears and succeed! Coincidentally one of my BIGGEST fears is speaking in front of others :/ I am on the edge of the cliff ready to jump to that next level but something is holding me back. I want to grow my wedding planning business which I started from ground up, with no help, i want to take it to that next level and stop being so intimidated and feeling like I am not good enough! That is what I want to make happen!! I want to stop being afraid of success and be more confident. I have such a passion for my work, for my clients, for life and know that I have it in me to make things happen! You are my inspiration Lara and getting to sit down with you and other people in my position would be no doubt life changing! Thank you for being so open and honest and for sharing yourself with all of us. We are all better people because of it. You have changed so many lives and continue to inspire us all.
    Twitter: Oohlalove
    Submitting for MTH Las Vegas

  35. Abbie on March 1, 2010 at 11:52 pm

    It’s amazing how much your Making Things Happen posts move me. Each post has helped me start recognizing my fears– even though I wasn’t quite ready at first.

    Two notes of yours stood out to me right away– afraid of making the wrong decisions and afraid of messing up because people will judge you. Wow– you hit the nail on the head for me. I am absolutely paralyzed with fear that I’m going to make the wrong decision. Two and a half years ago, I decided to take a leap of faith and leave the company where I’d worked for nearly 7 years. I had an amazing opportunity come to me in the form of a new job with more room for advancement, less hours, and better pay. I was elated to finally be recognized for my potential. Within two months I realized the grass was not greener (after enduring verbal abuse from my new boss on a daily basis) and found myself humiliated while running back to the old company (who I’d continued to contract for the entire time after hours). They took me back… in a position with lower pay and less responsibility. At the time, I was extremely grateful for having a job to return to, but I had trouble dealing with the criticism of my peers for the decision I had made. The open criticism has melted away over the years, but I’m still in a position that is so far from my passion that I have come to dread going to work. I know that I have so much more to offer and have applied for different positions within the company, but my initial decision has made it hard for me to be taken seriously– even after nearly 9 years at the company.

    The leap of faith I took made me feel like such a failure and still does. About 6 months ago, I was offered a job at another company, but I turned it down out of fear. What if I left and it didn’t work out? I certainly wouldn’t be taken back a second time! I am absolutely paralyzed at the thought that I might make the wrong decision… and even worse, be judged for it.

    My heart tells me one thing, and my head says no, no, no! I desperately want to follow my heart, take a leap of faith, and be in a place where I’m truly happy. I hate to spin my wheels at a company knowing that I’m not reaching the potential I’m capable of. I have big dreams. I also have a husband, a mortgage and two dogs. My heart says “go for it”, and my head reminds me of those things. What if I’m not able to pull my own weight monitarily? Surely I should have explored my dreams years ago… before I turned 30, before I bought a house, before I got married?! But my biggest fear… of being so unhappy that it affects my marriage. Not only do I need a change for myself, but I need it for my family, too. If I don’t face my fears, I’ll never live up to who I know I can be in my relationships, either.

    I was ecstatic when you announced the Denver meeting because I live only three hours away and knew that I could probably swing the trip. I immediately marked it in my calendar and asked off work. I had hoped to sell my wedding dress to pay my way, but I have not had the luck I had hoped for. It breaks my heart to feel such momentum already and know that I won’t be able to join the group. I desperately need to keep the momentum going in order to push out of this rut that I’ve dug myself into…. for fear that if I don’t, then I’ll never dig myself out. I would love to be considered for the scholarship for the Denver meeting.

  36. Lisa Zachery on March 2, 2010 at 7:48 am

    Through Jesus Christ, I am not afraid because His word says in 2 Timothy 1:7 “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” But reality is we as Christian wake up and have to deal with our flesh daily. One of my fears is missing what could possibly be my business’ greatest blessing by attending MTH2010. Without the scholarship, I can’t afford it, but I believe God is faithful. I am thankful for you my sister in Christ for not being ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ and applying Godly principals to your life and achieving success through Him. You are AWESOME because HE IS AWESOME! Hope to see you soon.

  37. Karie M on March 2, 2010 at 9:45 am

    This was an incredibly refreshing post this morning as I could talk a lot about what I want to make happen … I could talk a lot about what I am afraid of. My mind is always working. I am desperately seeking an “off button”. The truth is, I am still not sure that I will actually hit “submit” when I am done writing this. It’s almost theraputic just to get it out and on paper. I’m afraid of hitting submit, I am deathly afraid of failure, and I am afraid that even though I am sure that God has put me on this path, that I some how misunderstood and shouldn’t be walking this line. I started my photography business 4 years ago and love every moment of what I am doing – but I had a daughter a year and a half ago. Her dreams are now my responsibility. Her beautiful blue eyes look at me and remind me where I am supposed to be (which is never back at a corporate job), and focusing on her and our family. I want not only my dream of a continued successful business to come true, but more than anything, I want her dreams to come true. I want her to go to the college of her choice, play on a sports team or dance – and I want to be able to put every effort in to helping her achieve what she was destined to! My biggest fear is not giving my daughter everything in my power (within reason of course), and tools to succeed on her own one day; this really lights a flame under my business and my drive to succeed. I want to do this for myself – and for her. I want our dreams to come true … and I want to make it happen! I would love to be considered for the Denver scholarship.

  38. Sammy Tavarez on March 2, 2010 at 10:47 am

    Once again, your blog provides an amazing dose of daily inspiration and gut-heck reality that’s truly remarkable in this – typically – indifferent business world. In taking a step back these last few months, I’ve realized that my greatest aspirations include not only making things happen in business, but in life in general. I don’t want to just be successful in terms of my work, profit margins, and/or notoriety. And I think that’s what I admire most about the kind of success and happiness you’ve shown the world is possible: (1.) It’s a never-ending battle that – while attainable – requires an extraordinary amount of work and upkeep. (2.) There has to be a balance struck between owning our fears, failures and setbacks, as well as achievements. Strength and vulnerability are both allowed (and necessary) at work and at home. (3.) Putting it out there and opening up to like-minded people is the first step in re-directing all that positive AND negative energy in the right direction. Almost everyone has their own sad story to tell, but it’s what we choose to do to change to outcome that people want to know and hear about. My greatest desire is to make a difference in this world – for myself and my family – no matter what I choose to do.

    One of the greatest things you’ve accomplished (in my humble opinion) is to reiterate the idea that, in business, sometimes it really IS personal – particularly in this industry. My issue is that I’ve reached a sort of “crossroads” in my life and career. One that necessitates a bit of a push toward self-realization and discovery. There are two things that I’m confident will help me toward that end: (1.) Further strengthening / relying on my personal relationship with God and (2.) Having the opportunity to attend one of the ‘Making Things Happen’ intensives (if only to help with the opening and closing of new and old doors.) I’m aching for some seasoned advice on what overall direction to take, how to strengthen my personal brand, when and where to market myself, and how to be true to what it is I really want and need to be doing. My impression is that ‘Making Things Happen’ is about initiating that journey; putting a mirror in front of the all issues, including those that I would typically like to avoid!

    When I saw that you were giving away another scholarship opportunity, my heart leapt up in my chest! Unfortunately, due to extenuating circumstances this year, I was unable to attend WPPI in Las Vegas. Then I noticed you were also offering a spot at the intensive in Denver, and I knew I had to give it a try! Pulling together the airfare to get there would be well beyond worth every penny. Not to mention, my mom lives there (no hotel) AND the workshop falls during Spring Break week at school. I figure perhaps the stars really do align just “so” sometimes! Anyway … it’s amazing that you’re giving us all another stab at the chance to be there. Thank you again for being a constant source of inspiration and encouragement for the aspiring professionals (& dreamers) like myself.

  39. Katrina Hetrick on March 2, 2010 at 3:18 pm

    I have been trying to summon up the courage to post a comment on this since it was posted. I think that, more than anything, speaks to the fact that I need some assistance and guidance. I started my small business last year and have been struggling as I try to figure out which way I want to take it, how to grow it and develop it, and how to balance the time with the steady career that I don’t love anymore. I’m turning 30 this year (in about two weeks, actually), and I feel like at this point in my life, I should have everything figured out. Instead, I’m more confused and conflicted than I ever was!

    By submitting my entry to this contest, I’m already taking a big step. I’m nervous to do it because I feel like I’m not worthy to be in the company of such successful professionals at this stage of the game. It’s funny, almost – I teach drama in a high school, and the biggest fear my kids have is “What if they laugh at me?” My response to them is always “If you’re giving it your best effort and you care about what you’re doing, they won’t laugh at you – they’ll encourage you.” Now I’m here, feeling the same way my kids feel when I ask them to perform, and I’m having a hard time believing my own advice.

    I’d love the chance to attend MTH2010 Las Vegas so I can work on making my life happen the way I want. I want to turn my small business into my big career. I want to be healthier, happier, and more secure in 2010. And I truly need help achieving those goals. Thank you for offering this incredible opportunity!

  40. Kate Faucher on March 2, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    On Tuesday, January 19, 2010 I found myself following a quote from a twitter post that led me to this site. Sadly, I was one day late to catch MTH here in LA. Despite missing that first opportunity, it is impossible for me to express how deeply your words encouraged me to take charge of my life. As I furiously read through the pages of your blog, and learned more about the MTH brand, I was beaming with excitement.

    For over a year (since moving to LA) I have been looking for something to spark passion within me. After college I left Texas for my dream job with a company in Santa Barbara, California. As I got off the plane I knew I had found paradise and didn’t question for a moment that God would give me the strength to leave my family and friends and make something happen out here. The next year flew by as my heart and soul came alive and I nurtured my passion for marketing. The fear that typically remained static in my thoughts was suddenly gone! While I loved my job function, I was growing weary of the constant sexual harassment from my boss. When I mustered the courage to stand up for myself I never expected the fallout. I had no idea he was an investor. I was swiftly ‘laid-off’ from the small start up and immediately fell into the vicious cycle of fear-based decision making. Unable to find another job in Santa Barbara, and not yet ready to give up on California, I made the 90 mile move down to Los Angles – with great trepidation.

    Not long after moving I found a job with a tremendous team of bright minds, but I had lost that fire in my soul. I took the job because I needed one. I needed one because I didn’t have the courage to start what I know I was meant to do and I stopped trusting myself. I am fortunate to have this job and work with such bright minds, but every day I feel as though I’m following a path that isn’t mine. I see a revolutionary way to handle events. I see days where my hard work brings joy to others and I derive satisfaction from knowing what I’m working on is uplifting. I see a brand that allows me to utilize my marketing knack while staying true to who I am. For months I have tossed this concept around my head, and studied the industry through blogs, but it wasn’t until I read the stories of MTH attendees that I found the courage to write down my ideas. Something about putting my goals on paper made them immediately tangible. I realized I would never get the strength to get started if I couldn’t circle in on one baby step. Two days later I had the very loose framework of a business model as well as clarity on a name. That afternoon I resolved to start The Styled Soiree (.com, of course)! As I allowed my thoughts to run I was propelled by a strength not my own. For the first time in a long time I trusted myself and I was thrilled with what was next. After securing the domain and the twitter handle I outlined the phases of the plan and drafted some early brand collateral; all the while suppressing major butterflies! I spent nights loading my Google Reader w/ wedding and events blogs and learning as much as I could. I lived by two quotes…”You are only limited by your own fears and inaction” and “Feed your faith and your fears will starve to death.” I love those quotes. As I felt courage to tackle the mountains I had danced around, ever so gingerly, for the previous year, I praised God for allowing your words to speak so clearly to my soul.

    Two weekends ago I shared my vision with some friends and was met with blank stares and questions as to why I would leave a strong position to risk it all on a ‘passion project’ that might never pan out. As I felt fear flood my thoughts I struggled to convince them that the risk was worth it. I don’t know what happened but suddenly I am afraid. I have stalled and lost strength. I see myself at a crossroads….I find some way to power through and make The Styled Soiree a reality or I allow my fear to create a paralysis and I continue to fall short of my best. I’m scared. I’m not scared that it’s a bad idea, but rather, I’m scared that fear is winning.

    I know MTH2010 will not build a business for me. I know it will not be a seamless process. But I do know that it is what I need. The encouragement and support of men and women looking to tackle fear and move forward to be who they know inside they are meant to be…I know I need that. The Styled Soiree has a lot of lives to touch. The gift would not be wasted.

    Las Vegas (3/7)

  41. Jennifer Page on March 2, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    ONE CITY: Raleigh.
    ONE DREAM: To build a high-quality photography business from scratch that fulfills me artistically and spiritually…and one that will financially support my lifestyle.
    2ND PLACE DREAM: To stop being a boring, lifeless accounting assistant, and start being the photographer/wonder woman I know I could be!
    THE GOOD STUFF: I have done the soul searching, the stripping down to the bare bones…now I am ready to embrace the hard work and dedication to my passion and dream and go ahead full force…learn everything I can, soak it up like a sponge and use it full force! I have the passion and a natural eye, now I need some know-how to best optimize my biz’s potential!
    THE PROBLEM: Gotta compass? ‘Cuz I need some direction!!
    LITTLE BIRDIE SECRET #1: I was accepted into the Hallmark Institute of Photography. (Go me!) It’s costs $60,000 and I am broke. (Boo.) I’ve got no choice but to do this the hard way, from the ground up.
    THE GOOD NEWS: I am ready to get my hands dirty!
    THE MATH: I currently work 40 hours a week as an accounting assistant, 8 hours a week as a photog intern for a little publishing company, 5 hours a week as a volunteer dog photographer and 30 hours a week or more on my biz going on photo shoots, editing, blogging.
    ADD IT ALL UP: I want to be working all of these hours a week on my business!
    SO WHAT NOW: I’m still going to be on the schedule mentioned above, and secretly hoping that I get chosen for this scholarship because while I am “Making Things Happen” I know I could be doing so much more with some help.
    THE END? Heck, no. It’s only the beginning.

  42. Katie on March 3, 2010 at 10:19 am

    Who wouldn’t want an opportunity to attend MTH in Las Vegas? I unfortunately found out about this awesome experience in LA after the fact so I missed my opportunity in my local city. I’m a huge supporter of retreats, meditation sessions, group talks, etc. as I grew up in schools that were constantly sending us on retreats. I found that the time where I truly got to find myself and figure out what my next steps were was when I was on intensives like this – when you join together with a community that you believe in, and they believe in you, amazing things happen. I’m at a crossroads in my business where the difference between left and right really can make or break me…it’s at a time like this where my memories of college and high school retreats come back…I am in need of an intensive that will push me to Make Things Happen!

  43. Shannon on March 3, 2010 at 10:43 am

    Thanks Laura for sharing! As always what a fabulous opportunity to Make It Happen in Vegas. Here’s to crossing fingers and making a wish.

  44. Anna Kim on March 3, 2010 at 11:21 am

    I would like to make my photography career happen. I’m just starting and feel overwhelmed. So I would like to be successful in this new career path. And I would esp love to attend MTH Vegas since I’m flying from Maui and it would work out beautifully.

  45. Hanssie on March 3, 2010 at 11:56 am

    I’ve heard about #MTH all over twitter and I clicked to see what all the buzz was about. It sounded like exactly what I needed at this point in my business, but no way would I be able to afford the price tag. Thank you for the encouragement from a Biblical perspective. Starting my business was a way to control my paralyzing fear and now I’m at a crossroads as to where to go next. Conquering my fear has taken me this far and now I need the tools to help me take my business to the next level.

  46. Brit on March 3, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    I do not even know where to begin, because I am sure that each and everyone that commented equally deserves a chance at the MTH2010 Scholarship.

    I personally would love the opportunity to really push myself in a way I have yet to experience, and to grow as an individual in a way that truly pushes my business to continue to grow and make things happen. I would love to make a new footprint in STL for wedding planning and consulting and take all of my experiences from MTH2010 and share them with my couples in a way that really lets them know how passionate I truly am.

    The opportunity would be mind blowing and a once in a lifetime chance – one I would not want to miss.

  47. Christine Gallagher on March 3, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    I am turning 36 this year, I consider my self an established, talented, successful photographer. I am a mother of 3, a wife, an adventure seeker and I know that I live a life most only dream of and yet I want more! But that has been the story of my life, keep reaching, keep dreaming and make it happen. With so much that I have been blessed with, I would like to find ways to make it all mean so much more, a way to allow these things to fill my heart, to inspire me. Education is a life long process, I am a good student and I have my Hello Kitty book bag ready packed and ready for MYTH2010 VEGAS! Please consider me, Thank you ~ Christine

  48. Christine Gallagher on March 3, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    Ps. Sorry about the typo in the last sentence, ugh. I hate that, see, I need a lifetime of education, lol 🙂

  49. mariana herrera mosli on March 3, 2010 at 10:53 pm

    I just ran across your name on twitter and blog, and I might be too late, but I wanted to let you know that this was the most inspiring post I have ever read! I have been feeling like there is something dragging me (my fears) and it’s such a hard struggle because I know I have such high potential and creativity waiting to roll out!! I keep praying for the ability, but always find myself at square one! I would love to attend an intensive but I don’t have the financial ability to do so at this time!! I know that would be the push I need to get me flying! 🙂
    Thanks for all you do!

  50. Chakriya on March 3, 2010 at 10:55 pm

    Lara, Thank you for all that you do and all that you have written! I keep coming back to this blog post and have written down my fears in my paper journal. I plan to do some response art with each of them. I’m hoping that by doing so I will be able to redirect those fears into more positive arenas and use them as an opportunity for growth.

    I am 28 years old and believe strongly that I am blessed and have lived a wonderful and strange life. I’ve made many mistakes which turned out to be blessings in disguise. Growing up I’ve had many challenges and lots of victories. My parents went through a genocide, were robbed of their country and their families. I was born in a refugee camp, grew up in the ghetto and we lived off of food stamps. My mom had ovarian cancer when I was 21 and a few years later I was faced with an illness. My own brush with death has made me more appreciative of EVERYTHING and I don’t have a fear of dying. I am not writing all this for a sob story but to let you know and maybe myself more that I can get through anything. I am a survivor. However, with the many transitions happening in my life right now, I am starting to feel and I’m beginning to question who I am and what I am meant to do with my life and my art. My fear is that I will die not giving enough of myself to the world, that I won’t be able to do enough for the community that had supported me and watched me grow. I am not looking for anyone to give me the answers or to tell me what to do because I know that the answer is within myself if I look deep enough. I am looking to be inspired and to get that fire burning inside of me again. I believe that the intensive can do just that and much more. I want to keep making art and do it as authentically and true to myself as possible. I know by doing so, I will be able to attract the right kind of clients. That’s what I want to make happen.
    My life quote? “There is no path to happiness, happiness is the path.” The journey is what matters.
    I am applying for the Denver intensive.

  51. Lisa on March 3, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    You have no idea how much this post meant to me. Even as I’ve worked the last 8 months to start a photography business, I’ve felt stuck. Over and over, God has pointed out to me (through church, Bible study, and now this post) that I am the one holding myself back. It’s my fear that’s keeping me from making my dreams happen — not any external force. That quote from Marianne Williamson sounds so familiar. The concept is similar to what my husband and I read about with our small group in John Eldredge’s Waking the Dead about being afraid of our own glory. I’m definitely in that place right now, afraid to commit whole-heartedly to this business that I’m building and the life that I so desperately want. I’ve stayed at the extremely unstable job I’ve had for the last 3.5 years, at a company that’s completely bankrupt instead of facing that fear and doing something about it. I need to attend MTH Vegas because I need to confront myself and address the things that I’ve been avoiding. I need to make my dreams happen.

  52. Christine Elizabeth on March 3, 2010 at 11:03 pm

    I am leaving for Vegas in the morning…which is a dream come true, and evidence that I have gotten past a few of my fears. I have been following your blog since I heard about MTH, and there are so many times that I totally relate to what you’ve written. (Seriously – get outta my head! 😉 )
    A few things have pushed me in a certain direction recently, and earlier today I was thinking that, yes, it was something I would do…eventually. Then I read this entry, and realized that I am still afraid that I will fail; that others won’t like my ideas…..then there are the crazier fears: what if it works? what if I achieve my goal? what if that changes my whole entire life? What if it’s not what I thought it would be?
    I looooove that Marianne Williamson quote. “It is our light, not our darkness…” I think it’s so true. I want to attend MTH2010 in Vegas because every time I read your blog I’m encouraged and inspired. I can’t imagine how much more I would be impacted by being in the actual intensive….where I can’t just leave the thoughts in my head and go on to the next blog if I feel a bit uncomfortable. And, I’ve only told a few people this….but beyond becoming a successful photographer…I want to start a non-profit. I have so many ideas…and I work with people every day who need so much….and I can think of ideas to give it to them. And I want to make that happen!!!
    I didn’t read all the comments here, because I was starting to feel that so many others may deserve/need this more. I’m so thankful that you would put this opportunity out there, and I’m even more thankful for how you share your heart here on this blog.

  53. Carrie McCluskey on March 3, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    I want to make this the best year ever for my business. I would love to see my business more organized and energized to accomplish things I have been too afraid to try in the past. I would love to attend Making Things Happen in Denver!!! What an opportunity that would be!

  54. LezlieAndrew on March 3, 2010 at 11:49 pm

    I only have a few minutes before midnight so I’m going to make this short and simple. I want to attend MTH2010 in Vegas b/c I am fearful (your post totally nailed it!). I am afraid to slow down yet I am afraid of being so busy that I miss my life (and my husband and daughter’s lives as well). I want to be in charge of my life and my business instead of my life and business being in charge of me. Thx…fingers crossed!!

  55. Porche on March 4, 2010 at 12:42 am

    Wooohooo! I just saw the opportunity to apply for a scholarship to next week’s MTH workshop in Denver. It’s 11:30 in Denver and I am so hoping that the deadline is midnight here.

    I would love to be considered for the scholarship to the Denver program. I’ve owned my business for just over 2 years. It’s hasn’t been an easy path. Things are going well, all things considered. But I know that fear is holding me back. I would love help/guidance to help me become my own biggest supporter. I’ve got a great product, wonderful and kind customers, a supportive family and friends. I have lots of ideas but don’t know which one(s) to execute first, second, third, etc. and which ones to forget about. But I feel stuck and I don’t know how to take it to the next level. I know people can turn angst into excitement. I just don’t know how to do it for myself.

    Thank you for reading!

  56. Tina on April 5, 2010 at 9:57 pm

    Great Post! You have a ton of wonderful advice and ideas on your blog. Thanks for sharing.

  57. JulieLim on April 17, 2010 at 8:44 am

    It’s weird how these things find you. My friend and I were talking about ‘fear’ just the other day. Fear comes in such different forms. For me it was not making my dream come true. I planned so far ahead that I completely missed my baby steps. I missed those precious opportunities that will eventually get me THERE. I was my own fear. I got in my own way. After I figured this out I started to focus on one project at a time and WOW, things started happening. I owe it to God and all to Him. My motto is “make it happen, make it work!”. Thank you so much for sharing your fear with all of us. So thoughtful, genuine, and brave!

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