I want to punch Jim Cunningham in the face! Not Really!!

Okay first Jim Cunningham is a fictional character in the movie Donnie Darko.  Any coincidentally real Jim Cunninghams out there, your face is safe!

How ridiculous is it?  I mean it doesn’t really sound ridiculous when we’re in the middle of it.  But then how often are we not in the middle of it?  It would seem that our very existence is at times, well a lot of the time, completely driven by it.  The things we do, the things we say, the very things we think are so often underwritten by that 4 letter word…. no not Fu@k….FEAR!

Yeah I know, none of us are really afraid of anything.  We put NO FEAR stickers on our cars for a few years and wore that same statement on clothes.  We talk louder, or get angrier because that’s just how you get things done, right? (come on guys, you can’t bullshit a bullshitter) -> FEAR!  If i yell at you then you’ll do what I want.  But in reality aren’t we just a little afraid we won’t either get what we want, lose what we already have, or just plain be scared to death of what someone else might THINK OF ME!  That pretty much encompassed most of our existence doesn’t it!  You’re thinking about it aren’t you?

Here’s an example.   I was asked to go to this “walk” today for work in another Market/District.  My first thought was awww man I hate those things!  In reality I don’t really “hate” them but I just don’t always believe they are really a value to my time at work.   But everytime I go I learn something.  But I “hate” them because a WALK always consists of very important people!!  Yes District Teams. or Regional Teams or even National Teams.  I’ve walked with the lot of them!  But when I really break it down…it’s not necessarily that I hate the walk, granted I don’t find them particularly valuable as far as my portion of running a business, but what I really start to find, is that there is a fear associated with them.  I’m really good most of the time at treating everyone exactly the same.  Rather your my customer or the CEO of the company.  I’m NOT good at being what other people are really good at when those people come around.  You know what I’m talking about.  Those people that hang on their every word and run around them like Jesus has reincarnated himself into a VP or an RVP.  Come on.   So I have to go to this walk today in Lockport, which the entire Regional Team and Senior Merchant Team (yes these are pretty important people on the grand scale) are giving on an invite kind of basis.  First fear… why the hell am I on that list?  Then I hear that I am going on this walk because several District Team members want me to get some more exposure.  WHOOOOOOAAAA!   I don’t like exposure!  “They’re not going to like me!” Oh and in case you didn’t know I don’t look like anyone else that will be at this walk.  I have quite the beard and long hair and covered in tattoos and they are immediately going to wonder who let me in.  And the wheels start turning…!  I can’t go, I don’t want to go, I don’t even like these people, I don’t even like this company, Holy Shiv how do I get out of this?  Fear, Fear, Fear…..

In reality I went to the walk, it was pretty boring.  There wasn’t really anything happening that I didn’t already know about but it did get me some exposure to some people who definitely wouldn’t know who the hell I am or why this guy was calling them about some products he wants to get in.  Plus I guess it’s kind of nice to see how minds work that make pretty big decisions at a Market or District or even Regional level when they’re rarely in the stores face to face with our customer.  But most of the time it works.  So I jammed the fear back down into my shoe, put a little extra antiperspirant on, my slacks and button down grabbed my All-star Pro Champion Manager Embroidered apron that was presented to me recently and my custom Pro Champion Pen set that was given to me not to long ago jumped in the car with my boss and chain smoked all the way to Buffalo!  Yeah notice I mentioned there the pen set and custom apron.  Yeah I win awards for running my Pro business the way I do, yet I still have a fear that I’m not very good at my job even though those people I mentioned above give me this stuff.  The fear, they’re going to find out I’m really a fraud!  Now I know I’m not,  I am pretty confident that I do a pretty darn good job, and I really know the business, but just a little bit of fear creeps in and instantly I’m a fraud.  Then it hits me… I need to get out of this job before they find out!

I might be crazy??  Like you’ve never had that same thought!

I can say that fear enters my existence in so many ways and most of the time I really don’t even notice it until after the fact.  I think my boss doesn’t like me and I won’t get that promotion.  I think I am going to get that promotion but I will prove once and for all that I really can’t do my job!   It keeps me from saying things, and sometimes I end up saying the wrong thing.  Fear can manifest itself in so many ways.

So how do we step away from fear?  Do not start playing Jim Cunningham segments.  Did you figure out who Jim Cunningham is yet?  How about this line “Donnie told me he was going to shove that fear card up my anus!”  No?   Patrick Swayze…… Donnie Darko!

But I digress… when you all figure this fear thing out can you let me know?  I’m afraid I don’t have the answers yet!!

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