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“Don’t Forget To Dare”

Written by: Amy Goober, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


When I was 26 years old (over 30 years ago), I decided to open a cake bakery – with no business or bakery experience. I loved decorating cakes as a hobby and had made some cool confections for the clients at the advertising agency where I worked. But my knowledge about starting a bakery began and ended there. When I brought my homemade cakes into work, my co-workers raved, “You are so good at this. You should open a bakery.” Most people would ignore these seemingly nonsensical suggestions, but when I heard these accolades often enough, I started to think it was a good idea! When asked for her advice, my mother suggested that I contact someone to help me write a business plan.

I replied that I didn’t need one. She further suggested that I get a job in a bakery first to see what it was like before deciding to open up one of my own. My comeback was that I didn’t want to share any of my ideas with other bakeries. I was so focused and determined to make this happen that I was able to ignore even the most logical suggestions. Looking back, I honestly can’t believe I had the inner drive and daring to make this idea into a reality.

But, I did. At first, I started decorating cakes from my apartment and delivering them to customers in Boston taxis because I didn’t have a car. I eventually rented space in a nearby suburb and opened my bakery which I called The Icing on the Cake! Equipped with logo and business cards from my friends at the ad agency, press releases from the PR department and a few client contacts from the company’s lineup, I was off and running. It was probably the most difficult thing I had ever done, but I kept ongoing. Once ensconced in my new retail space, I focused on corporate and wedding cakes. At first, the mothers of the brides planning weddings at the Ritz Carlton and the Four Seasons would walk in, see me in my t-shirt and ponytail and ask to see the manager. But over time, they grew to value my opinion and provide meaningful testimonials and referrals. As the months went on, I gained momentum, experience and more confidence. My bakery became one of the top cake bakeries in the Boston area. We created event cakes for The New England Aquarium, multi-branch bank openings and department store celebrations. I combined my decorating skills with marketing and hired help along the way. I sold my bakery 7 years later when I had my first child, but it remains on the shortlist of the best cake providers in the Boston area, 36 years later. In fact, they designed and created my own daughter's wedding cake last summer – quite a circle of life experience for me!

I'm here to tell you to remember to dare! The definition of the word dare is: defy or challenge someone to do something. The ‘someone’ in this definition is YOU.Try something new, create a new business, push yourself outside your comfort zone and see what can happen! You don't have to go it alone, gather your resources and your support. You'll never know how it feels or sees what the future can hold if you don't dare greatly now and then! I dare you to Dare in your own life! Here are 5 steps to follow to get daring:

1. Determine what you want to do: This can be tricky because when you dare, you are really getting out of your comfort zone. Make this goal a big one. It only counts as a dare if you are afraid of it! I’m guessing you know what it is that you want to tackle. It’s probably something you’ve been thinking and wondering about for a while. Write it down, talk about it and try it out for size.

2. Research a bit: In today’s world, we have huge amounts of information at our fingertips. It’s so easy to research anything and everything. But, be careful because if you research too much, you’ll talk yourself right out of your daring goal. When I started my bakery, there was no internet, so I didn’t know too much about what my competition would be or even how to go about creating a bakery out of a rustic rectangular space previously used for assembling newspapers. So, take a look at what’s out there, but don’t overdo it. Believe me, you will learn as you go. You need to know what resources you’ll need and a basic timeline of course. If you research too much, you’ll find enough reasons not to move forward and your dare will become a don’t.

3. Decide if you can let it go: As you create your dare and fine-tune it, continue to ask yourself ‘what if I don’t do this’? I believe that the things we regret in life are the things we don’t do. If you can easily put your dare aside and not think about it anymore, then you probably don’t want it enough. But, if no matter what you do or how long you try to talk yourself out of it, that dare keeps reappearing in your mind, then you will probably regret it if you don’t pursue it. If you’re going to dare, you’ll most likely never be completely comfortable in the process. Let’s be honest, if you were going to tackle something easy or within your reach, you would already be doing it.

4. Develop tunnel vision: To dare greatly, you’ll have to be lazar-focused and stay in your lane. It may be natural to become distracted by obstacles, naysayers and competitors. To move forward, you’ll have to keep your eye on the prize and put your blinders on. Focus, drive and determination will be your allies on this path. A shiny object dangling in your peripheral vision will only distract you and delay you.

So, head down, one foot in front of the other and keep moving.

5. Leap: You’ll probably have to make a big step at the beginning. In my coaching groups, I always suggest breaking goals down into smaller steps to make getting into action easier and more likely. But, if you’re really going to dare, you are probably going to have to leap! Make sure you have a safety net below. For example, if you decide to quit your job to get started on your dare, keep in touch with your professional contacts for support and confidence. Have the finances you need to move forward and sustain you until you get up and running. The leap is a difficult step, but the rewards are so great!

Reach out for a complimentary ‘Action Assessment’! It’s a 30-minute call where I can help you take positive forward steps on your current project or task!

Find out more about Amy on her Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin and get into action at her website!


Amy Goober, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine

Amy Goober’s newest program, Drive Your Life ™, helps women put themselves back on the To-Do List and get into action. Drive Your Life ™ is a dynamic signature talk, focused small group coaching program, vibrant Facebook group, and soon-to-be-published book. Amy’s program supports women to get into the driver’s seat of their own lives using a unique 5 step process to start moving forward. With this program, women are finding success in many areas, including career, health and wellness, love relationships, parenting, friends, and activities.

Amy received her B.S. in psychology from Cornell University. She opened The Icing on the Cake, a Boston cake bakery, at 26 in 1986. She has since sold it, but it continues to be one of the top bakeries in the Boston area. Amy has helped over 600 clients in her 7 years of health and wellness coaching. Amy has moved from bakery founder to stay-at-home Mom, seasoned health coach, and now founder of Drive Your Life ™. She speaks on leadership, health and wellness, and personal motivation topics.



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