I can’t because…
This is something that I have heard far too much of lately, and it is definitely a hot topic. Put simply, you can if you put your mind to it. There’s usually only one thing stopping you: the fear of failure.
What is fear of failure? It’s a limiting belief that people have created for themselves. Sometimes it comes from past experience, or a long-held memory of someone telling you that you couldn’t do something, so you ask yourself, why even try? Usually, though, it’s manifested from FEAR. Have you ever thought about doing something exciting, only to find these thoughts in your head?
- What if I fail?
- What if I make a mistake and get something wrong?
- OMG what will other people think of me if I fail?
- What if it takes a long time?
Wanting to avoid feelings of shame and embarrassment is natural. No-one likes to feel judged or ashamed of their efforts. But imagine what could be achieved if you tried and …succeeded?
The only failure is not trying. If you decide not to take a risk simply because you feel fear, you’ve guaranteed a loss. Everything you ever wanted in on the other side of fear.
“Ok Tanya, that’s great, but how do I just stop feeling fear and get on with achieving my goals?” It’s a question I hear a lot. Here’s the answer: thinking will not overcome FEAR but action will.
Ultimately overcoming fear can come down to answering a single question. What do you want? It’s so very important to ask yourself this question. You need to decide if accomplishing something and moving forward is more important than the feeling of fear. If it is, you need to acknowledge the fear, as denying it on makes it burrow in and get stronger. But don’t stop there. Take a deep breath and decide to move forward with your plans and accept your feelings of fear at the same time. Often, making one small step forward in spite of worry is enough to give us the courage to continue toward success. If you are willing to try this idea, feel free to borrow the phrase that I use myself: ‘yes, this is scary and uncomfortable. I can do the next thing on my list and feel uncomfortable at the same time’.
Strategies to overcome FEAR of failure
Identify the root
Where does this fear come from? Are you basing it on old assumptions or experiences? Is that old information still true or relevant to your current situation? Reviewing your thoughts instead of accepting them on face value can be quite revealing.
Reframe failure in your mind
Failure is inevitable if you want to live a remarkable life. Do you want to live a life full of passion, meaning and purpose? I am sure we all want this; however, it will not happen if you succumb to your fears and seek the comfortable path. Overcoming fears is confronting, often exhausting and even overwhelming at times. You need to embrace the temporary pain of uncertainty and struggle. Use failures as inspiration and learning experiences that help you move to the next step.
Lose the negative self-talk
Change the ‘I can’t’ into ‘I can’. It may just take a little help from others, some further education, or a little extra time. Whatever is, you can do it!!! You just need to commit, take action and lose the excuse.
The first time is always the hardest, there are always people to help, if you choose to reach out and ask. I had never run a business before now, until recently I didn’t know how to subdivide property, or the process for developing an app. These are all firsts for me and they are all success stories, however I have been successful by finding and working with an amazing group of people who I have found along my journey.
Let go of the FEAR holding you back. Invest in yourself, you are capable of amazing things. Success takes hard work, ACTION and commitment, implement these 3 things and all your dreams can come true.