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I don’t believe that many people have a fear of selling to someone that they know. The real fear of selling more commonly relates to cold calling or speaking to a potential prospect for the very first time. The fear most commonly comes from the unknown, or the process of speaking to a complete stranger for the first time. There are other factors too of course, including simply not enjoying the process of cold calling, which involves talking to complete strangers to convince them to allow you to talk to another complete stranger who is the decisions maker. Let’s face it, the mere process is one of failing constantly until someone say yes. They call it a numbers game, and few people actually enjoy the prospect of facing consistent rejection before they find some form of modest acceptance in the form of just the chance to try to sell their wares. The whole process is psychologically and emotionally quite unnatural, and fear should be considered to be an expected by-product of the process for so many people.
It has been said that fear stands for ‘false expectations appearing real’, but often those expectations ARE very real at an emotional level, and there is nothing false about physiological responses like sweating palms, increased heart rate, shaking limbs and feelings that can make some people want to run and hide.
Knowledge is power, and fear is more commonly experienced when we simply don’t know what to do or say, or how to respond resourcefully to a particular situation or circumstance. Far more powerful than even knowledge is skill, which comes from applied knowledge. It’s all very well knowing that something can be overcome, but if you don’t have the necessary skills to use that knowledge in a practical way, then no amount of knowledge will overcome some fears, and selling is probably one very good example of this.
The interesting thing about selling, however, is that it is very closely allied to the number one fear of nearly all human beings. That fear is public speaking, and selling, while to a smaller audience, requires the salesperson to speak articulately to one or more people, who represent a small audience. Often, that audience is completely unknown to them, and frequently less than friendly or supportive of the salesperson’s needs.
To that end, we prefer to look at fear as a Falsely Exaggerated Anxiety Reaction, simply because it exists in the mind as a result of anxiety that is caused through lack of conscious processing of the facts, and it is strengthened by the fear of failure; or better still the fear of what can be lost by not selling.
There are two ways to overcome the fear of selling. The first is to understand the process better and to realise that it is merely process, not something that should be taken personally. By knowing the process and the principles of rapport, fear can be turned into positive anticipation. The second, and the one that works the quickest, is to use some NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) techniques to overcome the emotional aspects of the fear.
Discover how you can overcome the fear of selling today!