Do you feel fear creep in when you are with a client? Does it get worse when it’s a brand new client? Do you often talk yourself out of things before you even make a plan to make them happen? 

You are not alone. I’m speaking from experience when I say this: Fear cripples you. It can hold you back from growing your career, from expanding your business, and worst of all, from living your absolute best life. 

I allowed fear to hold me back from many things in my personal life until it became so exhausting, I had no choice but to make a change. I realized the only way I could get past it was to spell out the fear itself. To face the thoughts that were holding me back and question what was causing them. 

I realized I was afraid not of what could happen, but the potential effects that moment could have on my life. What you’re really scared of is not the event. It’s the outcome. The problem starts when you project an outcome that isn’t reality.

I allowed fear to hold me back from many things in my personal life until it became so exhausting, I had no choice but to make a change.

If you struggle with anxiety like me, you can often create a false outcome before you even get started. Am I right? This false outcome is what keeps you stuck. Fear just loves when you’re still. Consider those nights when you find yourself in bed questioning every decision you’ve made in the last week or even the last 10 years. When you’re not taking action, that’s the best time for fear to find its way into your head and take over your thoughts and your actions.   

4 Common Fears of Service Providers

Only by addressing your fears head-on will you move past them. Here are some common fears in the beauty industry. Read over them, and then take a minute to ask yourself: Which one hits close to home? 

  1. You’re not scared of doing her hair. You’re scared she won’t like it and will tell others you failed her. 
  2. You’re not scared of selling retail. You’re scared no one will buy it.
  3. You’re not scared to talk about pricing in your client consultations. You’re scared no one will be able to afford your prices. 
  4. You’re not scared to create a cancellation policy. You’re scared that by enforcing it, you may lose a client. 

How to Address These Fears Head-On

Which of these statements is one that you really want to work on? Look at what you’re really scared of, and ask yourself what might seem like a counter-intuitive question: What’s the worst outcome you can imagine?

The resulting question will look something like this: “If she really can’t afford me, what’s the worst thing that will happen?” The answer may be: “She will tell me she can’t afford it, and we’ll both feel uncomfortable, then she’ll never come back to see me.”

But is that really the case? If she tells you she can’t afford it, you can — and will — offer her options. To be clear, that’s not a discount on your services. Discounting is a way to pacify the fear. But creating an alternative solution that works for both of you? Now that’s addressing the fear head-on. 

What about selling retail during appointments? So many stylists steer clear of talking about retail because they don’t want to be told no. It’s not the selling part, really, that makes you feel uncomfortable. It’s the rejection. But take a step back for a minute. It’s totally OK if someone tells you they are not interested in buying retail today. The fact is, you did your job by educating them on your products’ benefits. 

You can’t control how a client will respond; you can only control the way you show up and deliver a message. Just because they don’t buy a product today doesn’t mean they won’t in the future. Just because they don’t buy a product ever doesn’t mean they don’t benefit from hearing your sell. Showing them how knowledgeable you are very likely builds their trust in you and your services, which will result in them booking more appointments in the future. 

Look at the Outcome First — Then Let It Go

Once you break down the fear itself, YOU get to create an alternative outcome. You can talk yourself out of all the what-ifs that slowly creep in with fear. (What if she doesn’t come back? What if she thinks I’m not talented?) By looking at the outcome first and recognizing that it’s really not that scary, you will clear the path to a better future for your business. Remember: You have control of your thoughts. And you can do whatever you put your mind to.