My Worst Fear Comes True

By Brittni • Updated on 01/08/2011

We all have fears when it comes to our business. Some are rational and some are completely irrational. So today,  I am sharing my story of the biggest fear I had when I was teaching high school art students, just a few short years ago. And how it rolled over in to a business fear as well. Watch the video to find out what my fear was, what happened when it came true, and what happened next.

After you’ve watched the video, here’s a little “school work” for you. Don’t worry it’s not too terribly hard. Here’s the assignment… Now its your turn to confront your “worst fear” for your business. Share it in the comments below. Who knows. It might not even seem all that bad anymore once you face it head on. So go ahead and say it…

Link Laura Roeder (as mentioned in the video):

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16 comments | Click here to reply

Thanks for the alternate perspective on this Rebecca. To be honest, I hadn’t really thought about age working against you when you get older. But it certainly gives me some food for thought.


I have the opposite fear. From the point of view of a 44 year old, you young’uns have an advantage. The young are seen as fresh and energetic with lots of ideas while people my age are perceived as perhaps past their expiration date. This is in the design world anyway. Although I feel I can keep up with the younger pack, I find myself trying to hide my age. I think it’s definitely a harder sell filling a design job with an older person over a younger one. Revel in your youth!!!

Rebecca Harkin

Is it a 26 thing?! Because that’s me too! I know as an artist I’ve had both sides of the ‘young’ reaction. Some people are supportive and think it’s great that you are following your dream, while others pretty much accuse you of not having the life experience to be doing so. The first time I received this negative reaction, it bothered me, but any similar sentiments now tend to just bounce right off. It’s not about what other people think of you, and the bitter people aren’t worth bothering with anyway 🙂

Of course, this is easier said than done. I still get incredibly nervous when I am revealing a new artwork to an audience. Though I must admit that it does get a little easier each time!

(I also understand being mistaken as a student. I used to teach violin and had the same thing happen to me, so I had to laugh at that bit!)

Alex Louisa

[…] ago, I was listening to a video from Laura Roeder (who you may remember me mentioning in this recent video I did) and she recommended drawing a thermometer and putting it by your desk, as a fun, visual, way […]

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It is daunting starting a business at an early age I’m 24 and just finding my feet. I’m a textile designer by trade and learning to be a business women as I go. I couldn’t see myself doing anything else and if its your dream you should go for it! – This keeps me going strong!


Wow! That’s impressive Kia. Congrats! I just checked out your site and you have designed some amazing spaces. Really great work!

“I think this will definitely change however over the next few years as more young people start their own businesses” Absolutely! I agree with you.



Hi Brittni,
I too am 26 and starting running my own interior design studio when I was 24 so I know your fear well – the amount of times I have gone in to showrooms and been told that they don’t give samples to interior design students is immeasurable.
However, since I ran (and part owned) an interior design service with someone else the year before (So I was company director at 23!) I thankfully already had a huge amount of contacts that if I was feeling a little uneasy I could go in and chat too (Thanks Serena @ the Romo showroom in Chelsea Harbour!). For me it was all about smiling and handing the person in question a business card so they could check out my website ( after I left as I think a lot of the time it was just as embarrassing for them that they may have lost an interior design contact due to judging a person too early!
I think this will definitely change however over the next few years as more young people start their own businesses and attitudes change from older=wiser to younger=more enthusiastic

Kia Sunda

Yeah! Me, you, and Laura are all the same age Crystal. Awesome. That’s a good point you bring up…there are so many people out there that have done huge things with their lives (and careers) at a super young age.


Wow, I am right there with you! I’m 26 and am constantly being mistaken for a high-schooler or college student. For me it’s happened so much that it’s become less of a fear and more of a pet peeve. 🙂

Still, I definitely get nervous sometimes that I won’t be taken seriously when I deal with clients. One thing that helps me is to remind myself of all the amazing things that people (even younger than me) have done/do. Heck, Lady Gaga is 24–and if she can do all the crazy things she does, surely I can be confident!


Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving a comment Laura. I knew we were around the same age, but I couldn’t remember exactly how old you are.


Thanks for the compliments Brittni, I’m so happy the video resonated with you. BTW I’m 26 as well. 🙂

I have to say your video is pretty hilarious! I volunteer at a junior high school sometimes and I’m always worried about that happening! Glad to hear it had a happy ending.

Laura Roeder

Thank you Poppy. Glad you enjoyed the video. I think that, similar to Ruth, your fear is a common one. Initially getting into contact with buyers and potential buyers can be nerve wrecking, the best way to get through it is just by doing it. After a while, it will become more comfortable for you. I promise. 🙂


A really good post. I follow you daily and really enjoy your posts. It is nice to know that everyone has fears in their own business. Mine is making that initial contact to buyers. I really struggle with it, but I know I will not be a success unless it is something I overcome. We all need to face our fears from time to time and step out of our comfort zones. So thank you for sharing and for also giving the chance for others to do so to!


Thank you Ruth. This is a very common fear that MANY small business owners have. So, you are certainly not alone on this. It’s great you are realize that this is not actually true though. A step in the right direction for sure!


Oh! I forgot to say that your video is a little bit out of sync. That could be just me though. 🙂


Great video, Brittni, I really enjoyed that. I thought you story was lovely. Being mistaken for a student! Was the teacher very embarrassed when he realized he was wrong? :-/

I suppose my worst fear for my business is a very common one – my work is not good enough. Simple. And not at all true! But something I struggle with from time-to-time. 🙂

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