I’m Not Sure About Staying in My Comfort Zone Anymore!

“The Best Investment I've Ever Made in Myself”

by Karen Mayo

Three months after I self-published my first book, It’s Already Tomorrow Here, I joined Quantum Leap. It has turned out to be the best investment I’ve ever made in myself!

Many amazing, encouraging things have happened for me as a result of what I have learned from the brilliant Steve Harrison and his team.

Talking about and promoting myself was something I learned how to do from being in the Quantum Leap Program. I had to overcome a huge personal obstacle of a major fear of speaking in front of a room full of people to get where I am now.

To start on this wonderful journey, I was an attendee at the National Publicity Summit. That in itself was a quantum hop for me.

Steve Harrison was our host. During the first day, he welcomed volunteers to come up in front of the room to practice our pitch with him, on stage in front of everyone.

I had a muted conversation with myself. I was saying things like:

  • I can do this!
  • Others want me to succeed.
  • Steve wants to hear my story.
  • I am a successful author.
  • I need to do this—just go do it!
  • I really was having a verbal war going on in my head. It sounded much like a tennis match, or almost like an angel and devil on my shoulders—though the devil wasn’t saying much while I was seated; the angel silenced her.

    Out of nowhere, I raised my hand. Not really sure how that happened! Was that the devil or the angel at that point?

    Now I was thinking. “I did it! I raised my hand, I got called on.” Now I had to go up and stand in line.

    While waiting in line, the idle time was the worst. I was starting to sweat. I still had the angel and devil scenario happening, and the devil was much more vocal this time: “Who are you to go up on that stage?” I was almost on my way back to my seat.

    Then Steve said, “Next!”

    OK. My turn.

    I got up to tell my story in front of about a hundred of my fellow authors and peers. I was shaking the whole time. I don’t know how I didn’t faint.

    Steve was great and very encouraging. I felt much better after getting the first few sentences out of my mouth.

    Then I was finished. It wasn’t so bad!

    "A TEDx talk—are you crazy?"

    I was really very scared to get outside the comfort zone I had put myself in, but I pitched the media for three days about Mindful Eating and was booked on several radio stations, including XM and Sirius Radio. I wrote articles for several magazines and blogs.

    I also made contact to deliver a TEDx talk.

    At first I had no idea what a TED talk was. I remember being told, if you are asked to do something, do not say “no,” especially right now at this point of my new career as an author. So I said “Yes, I would love to do a TED talk, and I’m honored to be part of your event.” But at the same time I was thinking to myself, “Now look what you did! What are you going to do? I don’t even know what a TED talk is—and now have to come up with something to talk about, and talk in front of hundreds of people. Are you crazy?”

    The devil was vocal during my muted conversation with myself. But as the good Lord above would have it, I did the TEDx talk. I was terrified and shaking, and thought I was going to faint. But to date my talk, entitled “Mindful Eating with Mayo,” has more than 80,000 views.

    Had I not talked myself into getting up in front of the room at the National Publicity Summit, some of these amazing quantum hops would have never happened.

    Landed TEDx talk, Dr. Oz, and corporate sponsors

    Because of the connections I made, I was asked to be on The Dr. Oz Show.

    I was also invited to speak at Columbia University to more than 200 nurses about nutrition and healthcare today. Speaking at Columbia was an amazing experience. The students were so receptive and engaging.

    All along, I was still taking classes on the Quantum Leap course platform.

    I enrolled in a course about getting corporate sponsorships. This course taught me about reaching out to corporations and asking them if they would be willing to sponsor my work and events. I have created seven new corporate sponsors of products I believe will help others in their journey to getting their health back on track.

    Raw Revolution is one of those companies. Instead of a candy bar or bag of chips, these bars are healthy and everything Mother Nature intended. This sponsor sends me samples of the raw protein bars every time I ask for them, whether for an event I’m attending or an event I’m hosting.

    This type of out-of-the-box thinking has opened a lot more doors for me regarding sponsorships.

    A friend of mine, Sonny, and I wanted to give back to the people in our community. My friend Brian is one of directors at the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Hudson Valley location, which has more than 146 terminally ill children waiting for their wishes to come true.

    Sonny and I decided to have a fundraiser. At The Surf Club on the Sound in New Rochelle, New York, we raised over $100,000. Our goal was ten wishes. Each wish costs between $7,500 to about $10,000 (for international wishes). With the money we raised, 11 children and their families will have a vacation or an experience they will never forget.

    The Quantum Leap course and all the amazing resources helped me make a difference in my life and career, and now we have this ripple effect of helping children and the people in our community. This 1% Annual Make-A-Wish Come True event was a major quantum leap for my career as an author and a speaker. The corporate sponsorships course helped me to have the verbiage I needed to reach out to such companies as Justin’s Organic Almond and Peanut Butter, Kate Spade, Credo Beauty (an all-natural line of skin care products), and so many others.

    Another quantum hop: I worked on an app with a company called Walk My Mind, out of Philadelphia. My podcasts are on their app, which works with the human resource department in corporations and companies. Some of their clients are Duane Morris and Marsh & McLennan Agency, which is also a corporation I’m working with regarding my corporate wellness business.

    When the Walk My Mind app was first released to Duane Morris, it was very exciting for me to hear they wanted more Karen Mayo!

    I have been working with Marsh & McLennan Agency, a global employee benefits corporation. We are contracted on a monthly retainer to provide my “Mindful Eating with Mayo” program and coach their top executives about nutritional counseling and having a better work-life balance with stress reduction.

    I’m not sure about staying in that comfort zone anymore. It’s looking brighter on the other side of the boxI’m learning the more I’m out of the comfort zone, the universe brings me more of what I need to move forward in my career.

    This post is adapted from an essay Karen wrote as her entry in our "How I Made My Quantum Leap" contest, in which Quantum Leap members wrote about the difference the program made for them and their careers.