Many people are stuck in the hustle of growing their business and trying to reach their next goal to the point that they can’t take a break or rest without being plagued with an impulse to respond to messages, write another post, or message another person. They think that drive is what is motivating them to hit the next goal, but it’s likely high-functioning anxiety.
Kristen shares her experience of discovering that she had high-functioning anxiety and that her ambition was being fueled by restlessness and an inability to manage her thoughts about her business when she was resting.
- Why most people don’t identify as being ‘anxious’
- Different types of anxiety
- Why ambition and hustle are typically related to the inability to rest
- The ‘red flag’ phrases to spot that likely mean you’re in ambitious anxiety
- Why your brain dramatizes and catastrophizes what will happen to your business if you take a break
- The 2 things you’re not managing if you’re in anxious energy/restlessness
- The conditioning cycle we’ve bought into when we have big goals
- 3 tips on how to improve your ambitious anxiety
There’s nothing wrong with being ambitious and wanting to create big success in your business, but when it’s at the detriment of your physical and mental well-being, it defeats the whole purpose. We need to stop validating the thought that your business only grows if you are giving it 100% of your time and energy.
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Karli is a social selling top leader and mentor who helps women find inner permission to challenge tradition
Deanna provides daily humor and inspiration for hot mess mamas and ADHD fempreneurs
Shaunna balances mom life and a 6 figure business all while being under the age of 30
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If you’re ready to learn the simple process of running your social selling business online, you have to check out Kristen’s live group coaching program! The Social Selling Academy: www.thesocialsellingacademy.com
Do you have a question about network marketing? Kristen can help! Drop your question here and she just might answer it live on the podcast: https://kristenboss.com/question
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Transcripts for Episode #38: Ambitious Anxiety
Kristen Boss (00:05):
Welcome to purposeful social selling with Kristen Boss. I’m your host, Kristen Boss. I’m a mindset and business coach with more than 15 years experience in both the product and service based industry. I believe that social selling is the best business model for people wanting to make an impact while they make serious income. This is the podcast for the social seller, who is tired of feeling inauthentic in their business and desires to find a more purposeful and profitable way of growing their business in today’s social media landscape. In this podcast, you will learn what it takes to grow a sustainable business through impactful and social marketing. It’s time to ditch the hustle and lead from the heart. Let me show you the new way. Hey bosses, happy Monday. Welcome back to another week. Listen, I wanted to kick off this week’s episode, shouting out some amazing social selling academy students who had an amazing end of month in February, the shortest month of the year. And I just feel like it’s important to shout out my students who do the work because organic and attraction marketing is requires a lot of trust. It feels very counterintuitive at first, especially if you have been taught the traditional way of sending a message and asking someone, if they want to see a video of someone you don’t even know, you have no relationship with and making that switch and learning to put value out first to a specific target market and serving your niche and really being strategic about how you show up online. It’s really uncomfortable at first, and it really requires you to trust yourself, trust the process and have high belief. And that’s why we have live coaching in there every single week to keep the belief high and to navigate the normal thoughts your brain has when you are waiting for the results to show up.
Kristen Boss (02:00):
That’s like this isn’t working. I must be doing something wrong. I should change something. My engagement isn’t showing like it should right now. And what’s super fun is most of the time, I would say 90% of the time in the academy, everyone notices a massive shift in their engagement first. And then about 30 days beyond that, then the sales start pouring in. But most people don’t have the mental fortitude to push through the massive discomfort before the results show up. So I just want to shout out some amazing people who had awesome results in February. So Kristen signed her new business builder for the first time. In many months, she says he literally messaged me 10 minutes after I posted about my first social selling academy inspired posts. There was just enough of a change in my tone and confidence that it brought them on board.
Kristen Boss (02:49):
I’m looking forward to so much more rock on Kristen and she spells Kristen the same way I do. So I like her. Andrea said this. She had her highest sales month of her three years in this business and a 28 day month. Even better. You ready for this guys? She said, I didn’t even have to hustle. I worked hard. And I focused on shifting my thoughts. Yes. Erin had this to say she reached her highest rank, ever signed three team members earn a bunch of rewards and money. She said she is feeling like an absolute boss. Yes, girl, Stacy made team leader again, and she signed two new people to herteam. Kristen, another Kristen, I’ve got quite a few Kristen’s today. She maintained rank and added points. She took great care of those who were added in February. And she has a full funnel for an amazing March, which means she has a lot of qualified leads in the pipeline for her.
Kristen Boss (03:40):
She feels more alive and capable in her business every day, Peggy ranked up and received a bonus. Customer retention is good and she resisted the end of month push for hustle and everything was just fine. We tend to have that thought like, oh no, if I don’t push at the end of the month, my business is going to burn down or everything’s going to be lost. Right. Jackie had her highest sales month to date Kia also had her highest sales month to date. And she’s only just started. Haley Arter also had her highest sales month. She said she has more active teammates than ever clarity on who I’m serving and an influx of engagement on my socials. She said she has seen massive growth without having to work extra hard. Can I have a hallelujah here? Friends I’m calm, cool and collected. I’m so excited for what’s to come this month.
Kristen Boss (04:26):
And I don’t feel like I need a break after this huge month. Whereas I would, before I joined the academy. Chrissy said she had the most hosts ever in a month and her highest sales ever. Another Stacy, she brought on four new team members and hit over $5,000 in personal sales. Yes, Stacy! And scored some points for the company promotion. She had fun. Listen to those guys. She said I had fun. Came from a place of serving and purpose. Poured my heart into my VIP group. She’s like, I just need to figure out my funnel a little bit better, but I was so happy. I even went to bed early and she’s 25 weeks pregnant and she’s crushing it. She had a fantastic month. I feel like I have one more. Okay. Jessica had this to say, she said, I am absolutely loving everything about this.
Kristen Boss (05:15):
Thank you for helping me change my mindset and enjoy the journey. I have signed 10 new business partners since January 1st. Never have I ever done this. I’ve also grown my Instagram following tremendously, got new customers and she just qualified for a trip to the Riviera Maya. Jessica! I can’t wait to see what this year brings. Thanks so much for everything you guys. This is just a small little sampling of what happens in our academy every single month. And I want to remind you that most of our members joined December 31st, January 1st. We had a massive influx in the academy. So these are people who are creating results within 30 to 60 days, highest sales month ever hitting ranks while experiencing joy, purpose, service, and calm. If you’re a hustler and a grinder, and you’re hearing me, I want you to hear that you can hit goals without freaking out, without hustling yourself to death.
Kristen Boss (06:17):
That is what I teach. It feels counterintuitive, but it works. It feels like magic. Once you figure it out, it clicks. And then it’s like the heavens opened up. This is what we teach in the academy. So if you’re on the fence, get in there, but huge shout out to all my students. And what’s super fun that we have coming down the pipeline is, I have some students who had big wins in the academy that are going to be coming on the podcast for an interview. And you can hear from them about their thoughts, their shifts, and how things changed for them. When they learned to shift their thoughts and add strategic value to their audiences, you’re going to hear directly from them. I feel like it helps to hear from people who are in your shoes, in your space. It’s great to hear from me as the coach, but I really want you to hear from the students and the breakthroughs they are having.
Kristen Boss (07:10):
It happens all the time in there. It’s a party we love celebrating in there. We celebrate all things. We don’t just celebrate incentives and rank ups. That is a community where I have worked very hard on the culture for people to feel seen no matter what, that if they are celebrating that they’ve shown up consistently on social media media for the first time in a month, we are celebrating that because that is something that should be celebrated. Okay. So today’s topic. I’m going to be sharing a little page out of my book. Okay. I am going to be talking about ambitious anxiety and I don’t think this is talked about enough in this industry. And I’m going to share vulnerability from my story and my space and what I want to give to you today. So listen, for, I’ll be turning 36 this year. Most of my adult life, I would have never told you, I am somebody who suffers from anxiety.
Kristen Boss (08:13):
I would not have said that to you. I would have been like, no, because my thoughts about anxiety are about fear and fixating on worst case scenarios. Anxiety, restless like that, that worrisome. When I used to think of anxiety, I would think of someone with a worrisome worst case scenario fix on the worst possible outcome. Ufearful, timid that this was my interpretation of anxiety. And even when I look up the definition online, it still didn’t feel like it really applied to me. Right. So I would hold on. Just want to look up the definition here real quick. Okay. So it’s Hmm, hold on here. Okay. You ready? Here’s the definition it’s symptoms that include stress that is out of proportion to the impact of the event. It’s an inability to set aside, worry and restlessness. And I would read that and I’d be like, I don’t, you know,make a catastrophe.
Kristen Boss (09:22):
I feel like there’s a big word that is very hard for me to pronounce catastrophisize events in my life. I don’t tend to overdramatize them. And I would think about that. And I would be like, no, that’s not me. I would think of somebody hold up in a blanket, unable to go out in the world and fearful. Now, listen, I don’t want to minimize anxiety at all because it is a real medical condition. And some people have crippling anxiety. So I want you to feel seen today, if you were someone that struck that suffers from high levels of anxiety, I see you. And I don’t wish that on anybody, but I had this idea of what anxiety looked like. And so I never identified as an anxious person. Then I learned that there are types of anxiety. There is high functioning anxiety and there’s low functioning anxiety, low functioning anxiety is typically that the anxiety that paralyzes you freezes you, you shut down, you internalize, you go within it’s a shutting down the low functioning anxiety shuts you down and it keeps you from operating or taking steps forward.
Kristen Boss (10:31):
Right? High functioning anxiety is an anxiety that propels you. It forces you to feel like you have to go and do something it’s high levels of restlessness. And actually a lot of highly creative, extremely ambitious, very successful people, specifically high-performers most of them have high functioning anxiety. So when I looked at that, I was like, oh, dang, someone has my number. How did they know this about me? And it was like, I was shocked. I had no clue that there were different levels of anxiety. And so maybe for you, you are, you identify with the low functioning where you’re like, no, I just want to hide in a blanket. And it’s very hard for me to function. And it shuts me down. I am on the other side of the spectrum, where restlessness comes around my work. It’s not with my family. I can not have too much anxiety on vacations.
Kristen Boss (11:31):
But now, now that I’ve become aware of it. I’m like, oh, this feeling that I have that’s anxiety. Oh, I can see how it shows up in areas of my life. But the biggest area that it, that it showed up in and had control over for many years of my life was in my business. And I didn’t notice that because I just identified as I’m a high performer. I’m high-capacity I can do a lot of things. I love being busy. And to me it didn’t feel bad. It didn’t feel like a negative feeling. It just felt stressful. I called it stress. I just thought I have some I’m someone that has a lot of stress, but I also love being busy. I love having a lot of irons in the fire. So that is how I kind of compartmentalized and labeled and almost didn’t see my anxiety for what it was until I was in a much healthier place and realizing that hustle and obsession in our business, our inability to rest.
Kristen Boss (12:37):
And this is me. And this might be, you comes from restlessness. It comes from a restless spirit. It comes from anxiety. And we actually do catastrophize. Is that the word I’m going to make it up today? This is the word word of the day. Put it in urban dictionary or something. But we, I don’t catastrophize areas of my life, but I did notice I used to catastrophize my business. If I stepped away, if I put the phone down, if I wasn’t working, my brain was telling me your business is about to crumble. It’s all going to burn down. Everyone’s going to be upset with you. You’re losing money. If you’re not working, your you’re losing money and things are everything’s at risk. And so my brain would catastrophize my business and paint this horrible worst case scenario. When I rested that created high levels of anxiety that propelled me into work.
Kristen Boss (13:32):
That propelled me into, I have to go do this. Let me just go do this one thing. If you find yourself saying, let me just, or I need to just, or I need to just real quick, if that is in your language, you were being propelled by a spirit of restlessness by this restless part about you, because your mind is dramatizing your rest. It’s literally telling you, if you don’t do this, everything’s going to burn down and you become very impulsive and reactive in your business. And it looks like busy work and we label it as I’m just crushing it. I’m, I’m a high achiever. I’m busy. But the problem is, is you’ve conditioned yourself to respond to dramatize thoughts about your business. And you’ve conditioned yourself to throw yourself into work when you feel restless. And that is not the answer. Throwing yourself into work does not actually solve for your restlessness.
Kristen Boss (14:32):
It actually can create more of it. And now you have reinforced the idea that my business only works well. If I’m working at all the time, and this is why people have burnout, this is why people quit this business. This is why people say, I didn’t want this. I didn’t realize it would take these things because we aren’t talking about what I’m going to call ambitious anxiety. The idea of, I need to get ahead. I don’t want to fall behind. If you’re unable to rest, you likely have anxiety, high functioning anxiety. Now I want to have a disclaimer. I’m not a medical professional. I am not a therapist. I’m not a counselor. I’m not, I am not someone who is certified to be able to tell you any of these things. I’m just sharing with you. Things I notice and things I have personally experienced as a business owner.
Kristen Boss (15:24):
And I think we just need to get honest and remove the stigma that people have around anxiety. It happens. Anxiousness is a part of life, but it’s what we do with that anxiousness that will either hurt us or help us. Right? But for me, I acted in self-harming ways for so long. When I had that restlessness, I would go and disappear. My work. I would be, I would feel this immediate compulsive urge to have to go and fix the thing I was thinking of right in that moment. And if I didn’t do it, I would feel panic. I would feel worry. I would feel sick to my stomach, but it’s because I would let my thoughts run rampant in my rest. Because I believed that if I rested that my business would suffer for so long, I believed that. And maybe that’s you, you cannot entertain these thoughts that your brain is giving to you when you rest.
Kristen Boss (16:27):
And when you step away, I want you to notice if your brain is telling you, my customers will quit. I’ll lose that sale. If I don’t answer it right now, you will not lose the sale. If you do not answer it right in that second. Now I do understand the end of month and last day of the month, I understand that like, there actually is a deadline. I get that. I’m talking about your day to day, the first to the 29th or the first to the 30th of every month. Listen, somebody who really wants your product or your business. They will wait. I promise you if anything, they will want it more because you are not coming off as needy, desperate, urgent, and scarce around the sale. You’re calm you come on your time. And then they’re going to be more bought in. But it’s really hard to allow that to transpire between you and the seller.
Kristen Boss (17:21):
When you were responding all the time, you can’t even put your phone down. You can’t even rest. God forbid, if you watch an hour of Netflix and you feel horrible, shame and guilt around it, because you’ve been conditioned that if you want your dreams, you got to sacrifice everything. Yeah. Don’t watch Netflix for a year. Don’t watch TV. You know what? That’s not the, this is not the podcast for you. If, if you want to be told, like sacrifice everything, goodbye to your weekends, and don’t watch Netflix for a year. That’s not sustainable. You have to love your life while you’re building your business. I see so many people putting their life on hold and throwing everything into their business so that their business can get them to a place where then they can decide for themselves. Now I can love my life because my business got me there.
Kristen Boss (18:12):
You need to love your life. Now you need to find joy now, because I will tell you, you will put your business on hold or you’ll put your life on hold. You will throw everything you can into your business. And you will hit that goal. And guess what? You will not feel any better. You will not feel better. And a lot of people think if I just, that happiness is just behind the next goal behind the next rank. And you know what it is. Someone asked me the other day, and I think I’m doing an episode about this, but when I hit a million dollars in my business, I really thought it would be a lot more emotional. I thought I’d have more feelings around it. And it felt exactly like my, my birthday, where you wake up in the morning and you look in the mirror and you’re like, I, I don’t look a year older.
Kristen Boss (19:01):
I don’t feel a year older. I don’t feel any different. Right. It’s kind of like those big birthday milestones, like 21 and 30 and 35 and 40, like all the, the decade numbers we think like, oh yeah, I’m going to turn 30. And you wake up in the morning and you don’t feel like a different person at all. You feel like the exact same person, your rank, your paycheck, getting that incentive, that car, earning that trip. You will be the same person who has the same crummy thoughts. If you don’t fix your thoughts about yourself now, today, you’re still going to have those thoughts. No matter what amount of money is in that bank account, no matter what kind of car you’re driving, no matter what rank you have and I see people hustling themselves to death because they believe that happiness is behind the next goal. Ask any highly successful person. They will tell you, happiness is never behind a hit goal. It is something you have, regardless of your goals is something you foster through gratitude and serving, right? But as long as you believe happiness is beyond the next goal. You are going to continue to have lots of anxiety around your business.
Kristen Boss (20:23):
Anxiety is going to continue to call all the shots in the game like it did for me for a really long time. And so I want you to notice what thoughts you’re having when you’re stepping away from your business for an hour. Notice, if you feel serious, an ease, it is because you have some thought that is not serving you when you were stepping away. And it might be the thought I’m going to lose that sale. I have to get to it now. And you might not even realize you have this thought consciously in the front of your mind, because remember 80% of your actions on any given day is from a subconscious thought. It’s thoughts. You don’t even know you’re thinking, but your brain just in autopilot, like, Hey, we got to answer that that’s survival. That’s how we survive. You better answer that message.
Kristen Boss (21:10):
Otherwise there’s no food on the table and the children go hungry. That’s what your brain is literally telling you. And you have to learn to be the higher evolved creature in this, in this situation and be like, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, hold on. That’s my primitive brain telling me that if I step away, everything’s going to burn down. I’m going to lose everything. My business is going to suffer. People are going to quit on me and I’m not going to be able to put food on the table. Your brain is dramatizing it on that level. Like there will not be food on the table. We will suffer financial harm. We will we will go without, and it’s really hard to fight those thoughts if you believe them to be true. So you just have to trust. You have to move out of that thought and into wait a minute, hold on and access the frontal part of your brain and use reasoning and be like, is that actually true?
Kristen Boss (22:00):
No, that’s not actually true. Will that person still buy from me an hour from now? Yes. And if they don’t, they were. And if they were someone that had to buy right in that second, that means it was an impulsive purchase. And impulsive purchases often lead to buyer’s remorse and they end up quitting. So it’s so much better to let, let people sit with their purchasing decisions for just a little bit. You want them to be really bought in to you. But if you’re too anxious to close the sale, you’re not seeing if they’re how bought in. They are to actually try and your product or service.
Kristen Boss (22:40):
So here’s the thing. Anxiety will cover itself. I think it’s under the ruse or the disguise of being ambitious and ambitious, isn’t a bad thing. Having goals and visions and dreams. Isn’t a bad thing. You know, wanting to hit, hit that goal or hit that milestone. So not a bad thing. Being an ambitious person is an admirable trait. But I think sometimes when we think we are being ambitious, we are actually operating from a place of serious anxiety because we are afraid of what will happen if we are not working in that moment, we are afraid of what happens if we slow down.
Kristen Boss (23:29):
That’s why the academy for a lot of students feel so counterintuitive because it’s a strategic slowdown so that they can actually speed up in the results. It’s so counterintuitive, but they, when they understand it, it actually works. They’re like, I can’t believe it. I slowed down, became more strategic and I got better results who knew slow down to speed up. Also, I just would like to say, when we’re in that perpetual state of hustle and fear and never enough that wreaks havoc on your body, not just your mental health anxiety levels, but actually wreaks havoc on your hormones, your body, if it’s kicking out like cortisol will skyrocket your stress hormone. And when that happens, your body is an inflammation station. And then when that happens, your immune system could be compromised. And when your body is constantly in the state of survival, because Oh no, if I slow down, then you know the children, aren’t going to have food on the table because your brain is telling you that now your body is in a fight or flight response.
Kristen Boss (24:37):
Your adrenals are at an all time high and your adrenals are not meant to be all the time. Your body’s not meant to be operating from a place of survival all the time. You will burn out your adrenals. You will compromise your thyroid. You will compromise. You will compromise so many things like you didn’t know that. Did you, right? I think one of, one of the episodes, we’ll talk about why hustle is perpetuated. I believe by the male culture and how we, as women have adopted it and it’s caused harm. And we are not meant to be operating in that way.
Kristen Boss (25:22):
So I want you to just sit with yourself today and ask yourself what thoughts are coming up for you when you’re resting. Anxiety only happens when you are not managing your time and there’s not a designated or delegated place for you to do things. If you’re constantly like reacting to something over here, answering a message over here doing an Instagram post over here, engaging over here, following up with the customer over here. That is so scattered and that’s not allowing focused energy and one particular area. So I like to view time like money. You have to tell time where to go. Otherwise you will lose it, or you will waste it. You have to budget your time. You have to assign, give time a job. And if you are anxious and you’re like, let me just do this one thing, or I just need to, or I gotta adjust.
Kristen Boss (26:14):
That’s because you have not put that particular task. You have not assigned that to have a place, a designated spot in your day to tackle that task. And so, because your brain knows there’s not a spot for it. It’s literally telling you it’s, it’s fighting to keep it in the front of your mind, which causes mental fatigue because your brain is trying to keep all these things at the front of your mind, Hey, we gotta do this. We gotta do this. We gotta do this. We gotta do this. We gotta do this. We gotta do this. We gotta do this. And that causes anxiety, restlessness, overwhelm, confusion, confusion. Some people shut down. Some people go into Tasmanian devil work mode, but your brain isn’t meant to store or to hold onto all these bits of information. Your brain is a processing center. It’s not a container.
Kristen Boss (26:59):
So when you’re literally trying your brain, trying to remember trying to keep track of all these things going on, things start falling through the gaps. And because you don’t, you’re not able to tell your brain like, Hey, wait, hold on. Hey brain. Like seriously. I have to tell my brain this a lot too. I have to say, Hey brain. I realize you’re telling me that I have to go and answer that email right now. But Hey, I have an hour scheduled tomorrow to specifically answer emails. And then my brain, because it knows I have a designated spot for that. It calms down. It’s like, oh, okay, thank you. Because my brain was freaking out being like, oh, Hey, we gotta remember this. Hey, we gotta remember this. And I’m like, oh no, Hey brain, I got you. I’ve got a place for it. Now you can just let that go.
Kristen Boss (27:41):
Anxiety is the inability to let a thought go. And it’s this fixation and it’s this irresistible urge to go and fix Krisit from a place of compulsion and fixing that inner restlessness. You feel. So let me just give you a couple tips. If you are not brain dumping every single day, start your morning, get everything that is in your brain on paper, all the things you got to do that day and give it a time, assign it somewhere. I’m not going to, it doesn’t need to be fancy, but just get it out of your brain and onto paper. That’s already going to help all the things going on in your head and that’s going to help anxiety as well. Right? Another thing is give it, give each thing a task or a time. And then lastly is notice your thoughts when you are resting, write it down, have a little journal or a little tablet nearby so that when you feel that all of a sudden that restless compulsion, it, it literally feels like a compulsion.
Kristen Boss (28:42):
Like I have to do this and you feel this insane amount of discomfort, not doing it. Check your thoughts, notice what your brain is telling you in that moment. Just learning to pause and question. The reality your brain is painting for you because your brain is going to say, Hey, if you don’t do this, everything’s going to fall apart. So I know that like low fi we talked low functioning anxiety, and I’m mostly focused on high functioning anxiety, mostly because I think a lot of people shared my viewpoints on anxiety before I learned about different types of it and how it can manifest specifically in an entrepreneur’s life or someone who has an online business. It looks like ambition. It looks like hard work. It looks like someone who has high capacity, but what it actually is, is an inability to manage your mind and manage your time. And you feel victim to your restlessness. So today I just want to encourage you to stop validating the thought that your business only grows. If you’re giving, you know, a hundred percent of your time and your attention and your energy to it, that is not true.
Kristen Boss (30:07):
And if you’re like, oh, I feel so uncomfortable. Even with that thought, sit with that today. And I want to encourage you to rest schedule your rest, schedule your play, but also schedule your work so that you can be fully present in your work, and your brain knows when you’re working.
Kristen Boss (30:23):
And then you can be fully present in your rest. So your brain knows I’m allowed to rest now. All right, friends, we’ll see you next week. That wraps up today’s episode. Hey, if you love today’s show, I would love for you to take a minute and give a rating with a review. If you desire to elevate the social selling industry, that means we need more people listening to this message so that they can know it can be done a different way. And if you’re ready to join me, it’s time for you to step into the social selling academy, where I give you all the tools, training, and support to help you realize your goals.
Kristen Boss (31:02):
In the academy, you get weekly live coaching so that you are never lost or stuck in confusion. Whether you are new in the business or been in the industry for a while, this is the premier coaching program for the modern network marketer. Go to www.thesocialsellingacademy.com to learn more.