In 2011, I picked up my first self help book. I spent 40-something years bouncing around in life, in and out of relationships, trying to keep my priorities straight, and losing sight of who I was.

I had no compass and no sense of purpose. My kids were the only people keeping me grounded. I always based my self esteem on making others happy, but no one was happy, especially me. I felt like a complete failure and I knew something was wrong. I needed a change.

I picked up a workbook that was popular at the time and was blown away by what it said. I read it several times over, scribbled notes and blogged about what I was learning.  Over the course of the first year the information started to sink in.

I felt like I had so much to learn, or re-learn. I realized I was a work in progress. The smart girl who had spent her whole life doing dumb things was having her lessons handed to her. It wasn’t pretty.

I dug in deep. I focused that over-achiever-perfectionist mentality on myself. I have cried, laughed, and grown through almost seven years.

After years of lessons, books, seminars, podcasts, calls, videos, and a million blogs, all of a sudden I was considered a leader.

Oy vey. I didn’t ask for a leadership position. In fact I had stepped down from many management positions over the years. Who was I to guide others?

Sure I’m a coach, educator, and certified geek in my area of expertise, but mentally I was still a disaster zone. I didn’t know the first thing about how to lead. I did, however, know that in order to continue the growth process I was going to have to stop shrinking from the challenge.

Everything I wanted was on the other side of fear.

So I learned how to ask for help. I started reaching out and watching leaders. My introverted personality quietly observed. Instead of sitting in the back row near the door, I noticed all the leaders were up in front. They were taking notes from leaders. They were tripping and falling and still smiling. I didn’t have to be perfect, I just had to do something. I needed to take action!

Instead of thinking, “Why would someone want to work with little old me?” I am thinking, “I absolutely can’t wait for this new adventure to begin!”

That, my friends, is progress.