Fear of failure is something we all experience either at one point or another or consistently. Fear of failure is normal and more common than we think. The problem is when we allow it to interfere with taking action towards our goals/dreams and we remain stagnant and stuck in our lives. This can also cause feelings of unfulfillment, anxiety, and even depression because it can be difficult to overcome and very frustrating.
So how do you know if fear of failure & self-doubts are holding your back? Below I’ve listed some typical signs:
- You make excuses for why this isn’t the right time.
- You worry about what others think and allow it to hold you back.
- You procrastinate working on certain tasks/projects out of avoidance
- You tell yourself you’re not good or qualified enough to succeed
- You have trouble trusting your decisions
- You remain stuck in your comfort zone
All these feelings are valid and part of our growth and success journey. I’ve experienced these feelings myself at one point or another especially when I decided to start my own coaching/consulting business. I thought “who do I think I am to start a coaching business and proclaim to be an expert in anything? But I did not allow these fears or self-doubts to stop me. The problem lies when we allow our fears and limiting self-beliefs to keep us stuck and prevent us from pursuing our goals and dreams. Success is achieved when you’re courageous enough to go after your dreams no matter how big or far fetched they may seem. There will be times where certain projects or ideas will fail or go terribly wrong but it doesn't mean you stop there, you just try a different way.
If fear and self-doubts are holding you back from going after your goals and dreams, I’ve listed 5 steps below that you can start taking now to overcome your fears and start moving forward.
1. Clarify your Why
Think about where do you want to be long-term or even a year from now and why is this important to you. How will your life change if you're able to overcome your fears and achieve your goal and what will it cost you if you don't.
- What’s important about what you currently do?
- What type of change do you want and why?
- How will this transition transform your life and what will some of the benefits be?
2. Know your Values
Before starting any transition, it’s important to evaluate what you value in different areas of your life such as family, relationships, freedom lifestyle, environment, creativity, balance, etc. It’s important to be in alignment with your values in order to live a more authentic life and reach that work-life balance. For example, if you value the freedom of making your own schedule, starting a business that would allow you the freedom to do that, would be in alignment with that value and would serve as motivation.
3. Question your Beliefs
Having self-doubts is human; we all have questioned ourselves and our abilities at one point or another. However, when your self-doubts paralyze you from taking actions towards achieving your goals, is when it becomes a problem. If you have self-doubts that are holding you back from achieving your dreams/goals, you need to start questioning those beliefs and where they came from. Sometimes it has to do with how we grew up or situations in our lives that made us feel less deserving. Either way, oftentimes it’s fear that paralyzes us, whether it’s fear of failure or limiting self-beliefs, we need to question the hell out of them and retrain your thinking around those beliefs. Below are some questions you can start asking and steps you can take to overcome these limiting beliefs.
- Where did they come from?
- Were these beliefs yours, to begin with, and what purpose do they serve now?
- How true are these beliefs? If you feel that there are areas of improvement, what actions can you take that will build your confidence around this? If these beliefs are not true (most of the time they’re not) List empowering examples of situations that demonstrate how they’re not true.
4. Practice Positive Affirmations
One of the best ways to combat disempowering beliefs is through positive and empowering affirmations to disarm those thoughts. You can practice positive affirmations by retraining your thoughts with positive ones. Every time you are trying to talk yourself out of something and give yourself a laundry list of how it’s not going to work, start listing all the reasons for how it will. Come up with a routine of when you will practice your positive affirmations. Either in the mornings when you first wake up, on your way to work, etc. Some other things you can try is to have some type of visual with positive affirmations or images and/or gratitude and positive affirmation journal.
5. Take Consistent/Imperfect Action
Taking consistent, imperfect action is another way to combat your disempowering beliefs. Perfectionism sometimes comes from a place of fear and it's an excuse for us to stay in our comfort zone by thinking "I'm not ready or I'm still fixing minor details. Truth is that it's never going to be perfect and you need to put your first rough draft out and keep moving forward in order to make progress and enhance your craft. We learn and get better at things by doing but if you don't put yourself and/or your content out there, you'll never really know how/what resonates with others and you're yourself from opportunities. By taking action towards your goals and towards areas of self-improvement will only help boost your confidence and help defeat those limiting beliefs.
Want more support on achieving your goals?
Join my Facebook Community!
Join our “Career Boss Ladies” Facebook group where I provide content every week on career transitions and starting a business. The group is also great to engage and be supported by other women in your career transition journey. You can post your elevator pitch or even do a quick video practicing it and get supportive feedback from me and the other ladies in the group. See you there!