Fear Of A Difficult Conversation

 Client Case Study: Marcia, Executive Coach

Marcia, an experienced and inherently wise executive coach, presented to me with a drop in self confidence. She felt the fear of a difficult conversation. She worried about not being able to stand her ground. 

How We Unravelled Fear Of A Difficult Conversation

The situation triggering the fear, was the potential loss of a long term corporate client. Critical self doubt was festering in her imagination and Marcia was assuming the worst. After a coaching conversation and visualisation, Marcia’s presenting issues were:

  • Fear about security: “How will I live on reduced income?” and “Will I be able to replace this valuable client?”
  • Fear about what people think: “My client may have lost his respect for me and passed it on to the rest of his team.”
  • Self doubt: “Maybe my work has lost its edge and I’m no longer relevant?” and “Why am I fearing and avoiding this conversation rather than just handling it?”

The Aha Moment

I asked Marcia a couple of questions:

  1. “How do you feel about asking for what you want?” and;
  2. “Is it really true that your client no longer wants your services?”

Aha! For Marcia, these questions quickly opened the door to new possibilities, a feeling of release and tapping into her old confidence. The fear of a difficult conversation vanished.

Together we worked out a plan. For Marcia, the most important part of this plan was to recognise and counter an old self sabotaging pattern. Instead she created a unique process to tap into her inner wisdom and confidence whenever self doubt crept in.

She recognised her assumption about her client was merely an assumption. We prepared her for her next client meeting with role play practice. Marcia left the session with a new self confidence, one born of having survived a minor crisis.

So What Happened Later?

Marcia emailed me the next day. Marcia explained that her client had just telephoned during a conference to ask her advice. He stated how much he valued her and set up a time the following week to discuss a new direction in working together. Remarkable timing!

That meeting flowed beautifully into new opportunities; a reflection of Marcia letting go of her fear of a difficult conversation about her worthiness and the power of intention. Marcia knew that something had shifted within her. Once again she stepped into trusting herself and her ability to ask directly for what she wants.

* The client’s name has been changed to protect privacy. If you are ready to refine your authentic voice and inner speaker, contact professional speaking coach Geraldine Barkworth to have a fun, fearless and confidential conversation of your own.

© 2012, Geraldine Barkworth, authentic speaking coach. This article is the opinion of the author only. www.goddessofpublicspeaking.com.au

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