Northern Michigan in Focus: Anne Bonney

The woman you’re about to meet has been everything from a special needs teacher, animal trainer, working for Under Armour and even an executive at a gym chain.

But she decided it was time to go out on her own and help people with something they have a hard time doing.

Corey Adkins explains in this week’s Northern Michigan in Focus.

“One of the things I like to tell people is take the first step, decide where you want to go, and you are going to be scared. One of the things about being courageous in change is saying I’m scared, I’m scared, it’s scary and it’s O.K., I am going to do it anyway,” said Anne Bonney, a motivational speaker.

Change: it’s something that’s very hard and very scary for a lot of people. But Traverse City’s Anne Bonney faces change head-on. 

“Jan Sanchero is one of my favorite authors and she said fear is going to come with you but you can’t let it drive, it can’t play the radio,” said Bonney.

These days Anne’s favorite station is on stage helping people. She’s been called the “change ninja.”

“I like to help people realize that change isn’t that bad and when we embrace it, it gets easier. So that ‘change ninja’ comes from all of the change I have done in my life, so I want to share the courage because it’s not that bad,” explained Bonney.

With her crazy hair and energetic personality, she travels the country touching her audience through real stories.

“So, I want to find the people that want me. They want the crazy hair, they want the silliness, the goofy the jokes. I’m not polished and perfect, but I’m realizing that’s O.K. because authenticity is important to me,” explained Bonney. “You’re going to fail to, I promise. Sorry, it’s the truth. But the good thing is failure is awesome because you learn so much more from failure than you do from success. I’m a mountain biker, no I’m not a mountain biker. I have a mountain bike and try to keep up with my boyfriend who used to race mountain bikes and he spends more time waiting for me, then he does riding, but he’s a pretty good sport about it.  Bottom line is: I’m a gigantic chicken on the mountain bike and so I intentionally fail at the beginning of our rides so I can settle in. I will seek out to fall two or three times in the first couple miles and once I survive those falls I realize falling is not such a big deal. I’m just going to go ahead and relax and ride and I’m a better mountain biker because of it. So go out there and fall.”

Advice we all could use.

“When the time is right you won’t be ready, you’ll be scared. But take that leap. And you say ‘But Anne, what if I fall?’ and I say, ‘But what if you fly?’”

Categories: Northern Michigan In Focus