As children, we’re natural risk-takers. But as we get older and learn to fear failure, we start holding ourselves back and attempting fewer new things. This last week my real estate team shot a video. This wasn’t a short video using my iPhone. This was a professional video that took time to plan. I hired a professional videographer, created a script, researched locations, set a date, and had to make sure everyone was there on time.

When we arrived at the location, I started to get a little excited, but I was also nervous about everything going well. I was a little stunned at the amount of equipment the videographer brought with him. I knew he would be bringing a professional camera, a microphone, and some lights, but it was literally a truckload of equipment. That’s when I started to get more nervous. 

I’m not sure whether it was the preparation I put into this project, the dollar amount it was costing, or just the simple fact that now it’s getting real and I’ll be on camera in a few minutes! Either way, I was beginning to feel outside my comfort zone. 

As it turned out, everything went well. It took longer than what I’d planned for, but only because I grossly underestimated how long it would take to set up lighting for each shot. We were not making one long video. It was a series of smaller one-minute videos for each team member and I wanted to have a different background in each shot. That meant moving the camera and lights for each scene, but it was interesting seeing how everything is set up behind the camera. 

By the time the videographer got everything unpacked and set up, I was beginning to get very nervous, so I decided to go first and get my part over with quickly. It’s interesting when you’re nervous that everything seems to be accentuated. I’d written and practiced my one and a half minute script many times, but now I began doubting the words that I’d written. I could hear that voice in my head saying, “Is this stupid? Is this really what I wanted to say? How should I stand? What should I do with my hands? Will the camera make me look fat?”

I ran through the speech twice and everything was a blur. That one and a half minute speech seemed more like 10 minutes, but I did it. It’s weird how time is different when you are afraid. It can fly by super fast or creep along slowly. When you’re done, you are just glad it’s over and hope you did a good job.

Why was I so nervous? I’ve given speeches many times in a large room full of people and been totally relaxed. Why does just having a camera aimed at me cause me to be so uneasy? I’m still not sure, but it was something important to me and I’m glad I did it. I’m excited to see the finished product. 

What have you done recently that took you outside your comfort zone?