One of my favorite rock-n-roll bands, Pink Floyd, once noted within their famous double album, The Wall, the horror of being exposed before one’s peers. Undoubtedly, for most of us, there is a great fear of being embarrassed in front of our fellow colleagues, family and friends. Yet, last week, I witnessed a highly talented, gifted and attractive professional stand in front of a large group of female professionals (predominately) and share her story.
This was a well-attended event sponsored by the Women & Hi-Tech association and was held in the spacious and superb quarters of the Barnes & Thornburg offices. I was excited to attend the event, as the featured speaker was an individual with whom I had the pleasure of receiving sales training a couple of years prior. The experience was excellent and the material was presented in a manner that kept me engaged for the multi-day training. Accordingly, my expectations were high for Brooke Green’s talk.
Upon arriving, I quickly discovered two things. First, I was the only Y chromosome that attended the event. Second, Brooke’s last name was no longer Green, but was now Crosley. While I must say I had no complaints about the first discovery, I felt a tinge of sorrow about the second assuming that something unpleasant had occurred.
It took only a short time from the point in which Brooke began her talk to realize a lot had occurred since I sat in her class for sales training just a couple of years earlier. With amazing courage, humor and genuineness, she shared her story of how she had “blown up” her marriage, “blown up” her relationship with her mother and “blown up” the dynamic of her business relationship. WOW!! That is three, huge, life- changing events in 18 months! How? Why?
Brooke shared with the attentive audience that these changes were all a result of her becoming “untethered.” Untethered! How intriguing! Many of us go through our lives rarely challenging in any meaningful way that we can and should rid ourselves of those people and things in our lives that limit our ability to reach our potential to fully be the person we were made to be. At the root of all the tethers is FEAR; fear of disappointing others, fear of failure, fear of what others will think, fear of the unknown.
Ms. Crosley bravely offered advice that we should all embrace. I know that it certainly rang true for me. While I do not expect that my untethering will reach the heights that Brooke has encountered in the last year and a half, my more subtle changes, I believe, could have a substantive and positive impact. Thanks for the powerful message, Brooke!