Stop your tomato fears from stopping you

When you’re venturing out into the world to be seen by an audience — into the spotlight — your fears of ridicule and judgment are apt to rise quite high.

It’s enough to keep you in perpetual procrastination mode, never quite finishing your book, website, screenplay, speech, or ________ so you can truly put yourself out there.

Change your underlying story

The path to the spotlight requires changing your underlying story about your “tomato fears” so you don’t feel held back by them.

Among the many tomato fears, like creative apathy, creative confusion, and creative blocks, you’ll likely face fears like these two:

The “It’s all been said before” syndrome

This comes up when you think you have nothing new to say, there’s nothing new under the sun, and hasn’t it all been said before?

These messages and questions will keep you quivering in silence unless you adopt a new mindset.

Try these ideas on for size:

  • Remember that YOUR audience is waiting to hear from you.
  • They may never “get” what it is that you’re here to share unless YOU share it.
  • Even if you’re sharing something that’s not “new,” your unique take on it may be exactly how they need to hear it to finally “get” it.

The “Who do you think you are” syndrome

This is fear rearing its ugly head in the form of, “You’re not special. Who do you think you are?”

Try this on instead:

  • Understand that this is your divine contract to deliver and take your ego out of the equation.
  • Recognize that interacting with your audience is a sacred exchange of energy. Treat it respectfully and reverently.

(These are excerpts from my Sensitives in the Spotlight class which will be available in my shop later this year as a self-study class.)

Change your questions, change your life

One of my favorite quotes from Tony Robbins is, “To change your life, you have to change the questions you ask yourself.”

Your philosophy and the questions you ask yourself about being in the spotlight and sharing your creative work profoundly shape your experience.

Change them, and change your life.

Your turn

I’d love to hear what you think! Your comments are always welcome.



Expand your Spotlight Comfort Zone
With practical and spiritual tools to help you get there
In a safe, sensitive-friendly 6-week study group

If you want to summon your courage and step into YOUR spotlight, join my upcoming Spotlight Study Group, where we’ll have a safe, sensitive-friendly, small, intimate coaching group to clear up the fears, doubts, old wounds, and other obstacles to claiming your place in front of your audience — where you belong.
Starts May 1. Early registration ends Sunday, April 15th. Details are here.
Questions? Email my team.


Coming Attractions

~> FRIDAY, April 13th, 2012. (Extended an extra day!) Last day to register for the next session of my Writer’s Circle session starting on April 16th. Sign up here.

~> April 19th, 2012. Last day to register for my next Life Purpose Breakthrough Group on May 17th. Only 3 spots remaining. These groups consistently sell out, so if you’d like to join me, reserve your spot ASAP. Register here.

~> April 19th, 2012. Teaching a live webinar for Writer’s Digest, “10 Practical Tips for More Consistent, Productive Writing.” Register here.

~> May 1st to June 5th. My new Spotlight Study Group for sensitives, artists and hermit types who are ready to take their call to the spotlight more seriously and clear up the obstacles getting in their way. Register by 4/15 and save $100. Details.


What I'm Up To

~> Ongoing. Writing in the ProSeries class at ScreenwritingU. Starting the marketing module today!

~> Sacred writing time. Early mornings and Fridays.

~> Now reading Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire with my boy. I’m thinking I’m going to have to knock off after that for a while because they do take a turn toward the darker side and he’s still just a little one. We’ll see. I’m also thoroughly enjoying watching Downton Abbey and Enlightened. Great shows, both.





  1. I’ve noticed recently that I’d been avoiding the spotlight by assuming it meant that I had to put myself and what I have to say out there in a big, soul-bearing way and telling myself that I’m preparing to do that. I’ve found that I suffer severely from the syndromes you’ve described here and have been pressuring myself to get out there and be seen for quite some time now. Then something happened in my life that caused me to turn deeply inward, slow way down, keep things really simple and spend time being with my feelings. ack!

    Through this “turning deeply inward,” I learned that it was important for me to let myself be seen in all my mess with certain sets of people. I didn’t and don’t need to show everything to everyone and I started to see how I’ve even been turning to the wrong people in some cases. …and in this particular case, not even my perceived ideal audience were MY audience. In this case, MY audience, the ones truly meant to be witnessing what I had to say this time, were unexpectedly ready to hear and expand upon what I had to say. In this case, MY audience helped me to heal and to get to know myself better and to begin to glow in a way that I didn’t know I could. MY audience helped me to come out into the spotlight when I didn’t even know that’s what I was doing!

    Thanks, Jenna, for helping me to see my own tomato fears more clearly and for this opportunity to put words to some of what I’ve been experiencing lately.

    • Beautiful insights and awareness, Lydia. Thank you for allowing us to see you! I love your discoveries around your audience — how brilliant!

  2. Jenna, I had a major break through this past week. I am not afraid to to speak in public, have written a book and plan to do another but what I discovered is that those closest to me have over the years made me feel like I was in ego to even think I had anything to say and over time I just got worn down. I was at a point that I did not feel worthy of love from others, to have an opinion/message and not have to defend it. Low self esteem. The funny part is that I teach an empowerment group and yet I myself have not felt empowered. I know a lot of this came on when I became sick and had to quit work, I was suddenly stupid even though I ran a hospital and have my PHD in Divinity. I took a step back and just looked at all I have done and now that I am getting better all that I can do, yet a part of me still feels less than. I know this will be changing soon as I shifted my energy but what a wake up call. Others who do not know me but know of my work listen intently, while some of my family tells me to leave it for others to do. I claimed my power and I plan on holding it and working with it from now on. My biggest critics were supposed to be my biggest fans, but it somehow does not work that way. Hope I did not go off topic. Why can I not teach in my own backyard? I am planning to do so anyway. I know without a doubt what my Life Purpose is, now I just have to do the work, not always easy. Thank you for your work with empathic’s because we do wear our heart on our sleeve and yes we are emotional, not such a bad thing, yet a hard road to walk. Many who I know that have this gift either hide from it or become bombarded with the emotions of others. They do not know/understand how to block out others emotions or to take them in and do whatever needs to be done to help the individual heal. I am teaching the new and young ones on different ways to protect themselves so they do not become overloaded. Your work is great!

    • Kathryn, Awesome breakthrough! I love that you are teaching others to be empowered and learning to be empowered yourself. I fully believe that we teach what we are here to learn — it sounds like you are right on track.

      I also think that often the people that are close to us in our lives play different roles. Some challenge us and trigger our lessons so we can more completely master them. Others support us to achieve our biggest dreams. Some do both. Sounds like you have some of the challengers in your camp, and they may not be part of your audience.

      I’m so glad you are teaching empaths how to manage energy and emotions. We need that! Especially in this day and age with so many, many empathic sensitives being born.

  3. Great article, Jenna! I will be doing my first big speech on Friday. After reading this, I feel much more prepared for a veggie free talk!

    • Terri, Fabulous! I’m so glad you’re giving your first big speech — that’s thrilling! And I’m glad this helped you feel more prepared. That makes me very happy. :)

  4. Hi Jenna,

    I also love that Tony Robbins quote about changing the questions we ask. Thank you for the reminder. I’m battling “transparency” at the local government level at the moment. It’s clear that we will never have transparency unless we start to ask different questions, like, “Why do you defend the folks who are not being transparent? Really helpful for me today! Thx, G.

    • Thanks, G! I just saw Rachel Maddow speaking last night at the SF Commonwealth Club and she talked about how much of our government happens behind closed doors, precluding any kind of healthy, partisan debate. She was idealistic, real, and inspiring. Kind of like you. :)

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