A friend recently asked me to emcee an auction. Not to do the actual auctioneering - warm, friendly and professional is not exactly what anyone wants from an auctioneer anyway. My role would be to deliver announcements throughout the evening, introduce key people and transitions. I said yes as the auction was months away.
Fast forward to the day of the auction. On my way to the auction I had a moment of panic: what if I’m terrible? What if I tell a joke that no one finds funny? I had dressed in a lavender shirt and purple tie in tribute to Prince. Would it be okay to start singing “When Doves Cry” or “Purple Rain?” My wife was away for the weekend, would the kids be okay with their grandmother? (They’re always okay with their grandmother, remember this was a moment of panic).
I had to settle my nerves. Calm down, I told myself. It will be okay. My nervous energy was just telling me I want to do well. My nerves were further calmed by the presence of friends and friendly faces. I took the mic and made the announcements. Being up on the stage was much different than being in the friendly confines of my recording studio.
And this is where I stretched my boundaries. I tried something new despite a moment of panic and being out of my comfort zone. By all accounts, I did well. I introduced the auctioneer, got the crowd to clap for the barbershop quartet, and managed to not offend anyone.
Stretching our boundaries is one key to success. Even starting my voiceover business was an exercise in boundary stretching. Could I develop relationships with clients? Would they like my sound? Oh, boy, I’m feeling a moment of panic again...