Shawn Fink | Brave YES Business Playbook

Discover Your Fear Illusion

publishedabout 2 months ago
7 min read

Welcome to the 48th Issue of the Brave YES Biz Playbook, a weekly newsletter by me, Shawn Fink, with musings on courage, business strategy and having the capacity to play bigger and live your best life. I am SO glad you are here. You may want to allow for images to show up in this edition for a better reading experience.​

Happy New Week!

This is a BIG week for me, friend.

  1. I'm speaking at a very personal, very wild local event this week -- 20 slides and 20 seconds to tell MY story about how I became an accidental entrepreneur. (If you are good, I may share the YouTube video with you when it's available.)
  2. I'm having a birthday this week! But not just any birthday. The one that will kickstart the last year of my 4th Decade. I'm trying to not put a lot of baggage on this birthday but let's face it, I'm putting a lot of baggage on this birthday. :)
  3. I'm RAISING my coaching rates this week. Happy Birthday to ME. BUT, as promised, I have created space for ONE more client at my old rates ($500/month with a 6 month commitment.) Reply to this email and ask to schedule a coaching exploratory call if you are The One.
  4. I'm hosting another Braving the Business Arena: A Masterclass for Female Entrepreneurs to learn how to Overcome Fear and Achieve Goals. The first session last month went GREAT. I'll be offering a FREE 30 minute coaching session to anyone who attends live this round. Register here.​
  5. Also, this PA resident also says Go Eagles! :)

Last week, I talked about how YOU or parts of your business might be languishing and I encouraged you to develop a plan of action.

If you didn't know, I really, really, really like action plans. 😬😬😬

What I didn't get into last week is this: The antidote to languishing is COURAGE -- being willing to take bold risks and do the things that will lead you out of languishing AND INTO THRIVING.

HARD TRUTH: If you are not feeling abundant as a business owner and founder of your business, you are not making enough courageous moves.


Listen, my dear, I get it. That soft blanket of comfort you're hiding under feels so nice! You're tired. You're burned out. You just want peace and rest.

But if you stay under that soft blanket not making any moves you may still be under there 5 years from now.

My mission is clear. I want to ensure you have the capacity to do the bold work you need to do to feel amazing and be abundant in your life. #abundanceforever

Your resting place is just that ... a pause, a rest, a momentary stillness.

But what we need to get you doing is making those bold decisions, taking those fear of change risks and doing some Brave YES Power Moves to get your business where you actually want it.

What are Brave YES Power Moves?

They are Impactful, strategic and intentional business practices that are about purpose, prosperity and doing good in the world.

--> I'm going to be talking more about these on the upcoming Braving the Business Arena Masterclass on February 24. Please plan to join me. ​

But, today, I want to talk about a common mistake we encounter when trying to take risks in our life but especially in business.

Fear is always the star.

I'm in a situation right now where Fear wants to be the superhero of the story.

I refuse to let it.

I don't believe in feeling the fear and doing it anyway -- that doesn't work for me or people like me who are highly sensitive and aware of emotions.

Instead, I try to point out to my clients that a lot of times, it's not really fear -- or imposter complex -- that is the actual issue.

Fear is often the blanket problem we toss at things that scare us or that may spark change.

But, I've never met a fear conversation that didn't have something more deeply rooted lying underneath that is the real obstacle.

Let's dive into that a bit more this week ...

Here are 5 Fear Illusions (the list is much longer) that are often mistaken for FEAR when the problem -- and the solution -- are actually much deeper:


You might be facing a situation or a decision where your identity is shaky and you're trapped in this weird place of still being who you used to be and not quite yet who you are becoming. This creates an illusion of fear and imposter. When really, it's identity work you need to focus on -- who are you, who do you want to be and what's going to bring you alive? We focus on a ton of identity work in my private coaching program.


Far more common, is that lack of clarity is mistaken for fear. After all, when we are not clear on what's about to happen or what needs to happen we are in a place of messy middle uncertainty. And uncertainty creates a fear illusion. If you often aren't sure if your next move is the right one fear will bubble up. If you aren't sure and are feeling decision wobbles, this is a clarity issue not a fear issue. (Ex. I want to raise my prices but I'm afraid ... what's the facts about raising your prices?)


If you find yourself procrastinating on something that is important to you, ask yourself about your WHY around that task. It's possible it's a should and it's not in alignment with you, your work or your values. Your fear is telling you that your values are being bumped. When your values and integrity are being challenged in any way, your body is going to put up some resistance.


I will keep saying it a million ways. Your life circumstances, energy and time management is going to be the biggest influence on whether you are willing to take a bold risk and how you will fare through it. When you are burned out, everything is harder and more terrifying. Strengthen this part of you -- as the founder -- and you will see the Fear Illusion drop. You'll suddenly have a ton of courage!


The body remembers past failures and so while you may be super ready and super excited about this bold move you want to make for you and your business, your body may be reminding you of that time you were called out in 4th grade for getting an answer wrong. That old story -- whatever yours is -- may be speaking louder than your Brave YES Mindset. Awareness is key here so you can start to craft a new story. (As a storyteller, this is my favorite work to do with clients!)

These 5 Fear Illusions aren't the only sticking points that hold entrepreneurs back from taking bold action. Other factors are life and health circumstances, lack of resources and support and wrong service or wrong market -- all figureoutable but need to be identified.

So, my dear friend ... tell me ... what do you think is the fear or fear illusion preventing you from doing The Thing you need to no longer be languishing or to pivot, grow or uplevel your business -- or your life -- may be another shadow all together.

Let's get to the root of it.

Join me on Friday, Feb. 24 for another round of Braving the Business Arena: A Masterclass for Female Entrepreneurs to learn how to Overcome Fear and Achieve Goals. BONUS: I'll be offering a FREE 30 minute coaching session to everyone who attends LIVE this round. Hope you'll join me. REGISTER HERE.​

P.S. Need help with creating a game plan to move from languishing to flourishing? I have ONE coaching space left in my calendar before I raise my coaching rates. Book a call with me now to see if coaching is what you need to start reviving your business now. Your Brave YES intentions will add the kind of spice and pazazz you need to meet your goals. Let's chat! ​

P.P.S. "You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it." ― Maya Angelou

If you like this weekly email, please pay it forward by ...

1. Forward this email to a fave entrepreneur you know could use a weekly courage boost ... suggest they sign up to receive these emails each week by signing up here.​

2. Refer a business bestie to my private, customized business coaching. I offer business design strategy & courage coaching and am holding coaching exploratory calls for March start dates as my calendar is full this month. Learn more here. (Deep gratitude)

3. SAY HELLO --> HIT REPLY and say hello and tell me which B.R.A.V.E step you want to take this year in your business! Are you clear on what it is or do you need help figuring it out? Or, just hit reply and say HI and let me know you are here and that I am not speaking into the void. :)



1. For my clients -- and others -- who thought their relationship to time was about being a free spirit ... turns out, you need to PLAN to be a free spirit. Get out those planning pads. ​

2. I literally just had a coaching session with a client about time, focus and decreasing interruptions! This article is so on point! "The many influences (the author) identifies on our attention – individual, social, environmental, technological – emphasises not only the scale of the challenge, but the limits of zeroing in on any one of them for a potential solution. Distraction isn’t a tech problem, or a people problem – it’s both, inextricably intertwined. Indeed, one of Mark’s most disquieting findings is that we have become so accustomed to being interrupted, we do it to ourselves." READ THE ARTICLE HERE​

3. SPEAKING of Interruptions :) ... Here's a different article with some strategies referencing the same book referenced in the last article above: "A paltry five-minute break might impulsively lead to scanning Facebook, but Mark says that can amount to multitasking because it means sorting through pieces of information, which in turn can sap your scarce mental energy. Whatever negative space you can claim, try to create a restorative break that leaves you feeling refreshed." YES to that. READ HERE.​