The Stevie G. Success Show Notes

Episode SGS-0022 – Francie Van Wirkus – Stop Starting and Start Finishing

Welcome to Episode 22 of the Stevie G. Success Show where you will learn to “live more, plFrancie Photo_150dpiay more, and rock the world.”  Thank you for leaving a review of the show on iTunes and Blubrry, as this helps to elevate us in the rankings, and brings more exposure to our fabulous guests that have agreed to bring their very best to you during their interviews. If you have liked my guests thus far, you are going to love today’s guest Francie Van Wirkus, who is one of the most inspirational women you will ever meet and I am so happy that I can consider her now among my circle of influencers, and it is all thanks to this show!

When I began this journey at the end of January, I did not know really where this would lead me, but I am so thankful that I did. Because here we are going into our 6th month of production and we are in 19 countries, and 29 of the United States! Prior to launching the show I had no idea how to reach people in places like Germany, France, Poland, or Colombia with my message and it all became possible simply because I took the very 1st step. I stopped talking about it, stopped dreaming about it, stopped thinking about it, and I just did it.

I was fortunate to have much of the Podcasting gear I needed already from my days as a professional musician and recording artist. All I needed was a digital Microphone, and a portable digital recorder and I started. I did not know how or where to publish it, how to promote it, or even the best practices for creating a good quality recording. I started and I figured I will learn as I go. On the job training so to speak, and that has been my approach to things most of my life. If I need something and do not know how to do it, I will learn and figure it out as I go. Now I know this may not be your approach, and it does not have to be. I am not saying my way is the way, or even the best way, but is certainly is my way.

The reason this is important is because it allows me to steer clear of one of the biggest hurdles people have when it comes to getting things done, and that is they spend so much time and energy “starting” that they never finish. Usually when we say we are going to start something we think about it, we talk to other people and get their input, we consider the input and maybe change our minds altogether or adjust our path. We then go and do research online, or at the book store…I know some people that will actually go to book stores and sit and read entire copies of books in preparation for doing whatever it is. They will comparison shop, ask for more input from others, do some more research and analysis and before you know it, months have gone by and they still have not started anything. They are merely preparing to start.

I remember being in that mode myself years ago when I was building a career as a singer-songwriter/recording artist in LA. As a recording artist, my objective was to record a CD, my product, and share my music with the world. I spent many years performing in local clubs, recording demos, shopping those demos to get a record deal or management deal, taking voice and stage performance coaching, acting lessons, songwriting workshops, learning about the music industry every way and anyway that I could.  I even went to the length of becoming an entertainment lawyer for the primary purpose of accessing the people and open the doors that I could not access as one of thousands of struggling musicians. Who does that? I was so busy doing the things I thought I needed to do to launch my CD, that I never actually did it. But hey, I was in the industry. Yes, I was in the industry and I was doing everything except that which was my objective which was to create a product, a CD of my own music and release it. Now for someone who just wants to be a singer-songwriter, a studio musician, or background vocalist you do not need a CD in order to pursue a career. But to be a recording artist, you need a CD.

I remember for years I would tell people, yes, I am going to record a CD and years went by that I did not do it. I dreamed about it, thought about it, did other work around it, but I never recorded the CD.

“Fear of failure is the assassin of creativity.” – Francie Van Wirkus

Then finally the day came when I got tired of talking about it. The music industry was changing; the record labels were no longer handing out record deals, American Idol was the big thing on the market and record labels were looking for the young, aspiring, moldable talent that they could shape into whatever they wanted. So, I thought, well, if I am ever going to do this, I have to do it soon. I looked on the calendar and I did not see “soon” written on there.  I saw Monday through Sunday, but did not see “soon.” As I examined it closer what I saw was there is today, and there is tomorrow. Why not then…start today?

And so I did. I hired an arranger, a producer, a recording studio, the musicians, and within a few months, I had accomplished what I had been working on for years. I finally had my CD and released it on my own label. And, I named it aptly…Starting Today” which was even considered for a Grammy award in the year 2000, something I am very proud of.

Now, I agree that for some things it is necessary to conduct product or market research, feasibility studies, financial or legal studies, before you begin a project. This kind of planning however is not required for most personal level projects like going back to school to get a degree, becoming a chef, writing a book, starting a small business, producing an independent film, becoming a photographer, doctor, lawyer, counselor, life coach, or even becoming a world class athlete. How many people do you know that talk about the things they are going to do and they prepare to start but never actually start? How many times have you done that with your own dreams? I know I did, and it took me many years to realize that I was never really finishing what I had set out to do. I had started the process, and then I found myself getting caught up in the process so much that it distracted me from my objective. And what turned me around was I had finally had enough. I had finally had enough of being controlled by the fear of whether I could do it, whether it would be good enough, would anyone even care. I finally decided that while I do want the world to enjoy what I created, I was no longer going to allow the fear of whether they would like or not, to run my life.

I do happen to have some copies of my CD still available, 11 original songs which are in the Smooth-Jazz and Latin pop genre, featuring Gerald Albright, Paul Jackson Jr., and Dirk K. If you would like a copy of “Starting Today” you can find it at just go to the Success Store in the menu bar.

So, if you are ready to stop starting and start finishing, I want you to sit back and enjoy this interview with the inspiring Francie Van Wirkus who also had to face her fears to become the author, speaker, coach, athlete, and cancer victor that she is today.


About Francie:The_Competitor_In_Me_II

Francie Van Wirkus is a motivational speaker, author, coach, and conqueror of mediocrity. She works with high level leadership in the insurance and financial services industry on the most challenging issues facing success today. Francie’s writing has taken her many places, from Frank Lloyd Wright mansions to interviews with innovative oncologists; her work has been a journey. Her nonfiction series, The Competitor in Me, shares a journey of a different sort: one of conquering self, first to reach a goal and then to overcome fear. Second in her nonfiction series, The Competitor in Me II: Conquer Fear, takes readers on a new and unforgettable journey through her memoirs. Purchase her books here on Amazon:

Connect with Francie Van Wirkus: 

 I look forward to helping you live more, play more, and rock the world!

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