When I was in elementary school, I used to fear silly things. I used to fear that ghosts were lurking around at night. I used to fear that Clubber Lang (Mr. T in Rocky) would come out from the corner of my room and beat me to a pulp like he did with Rocky. These were obviously irrational and for a lack of a better word, ‘crazy’ fears. But as I outgrew those fears, new fears crept up in junior high, then high school, etc.
Like it or not, fear is a part of being human. It’s one of the most powerful emotions and has kept our ancestors from getting into too much trouble. As I wrote in how fear hinders your business growth, the things we fear today are much less life threatening and instead, ends up holding us back. This is especially true for us entrepreneurs; people who are looking to start their ecommerce business, and people who have already committed to their own businesses.
Fears are not easy things to overcome, but by implementing the 3 steps below to overcome your business fears, you’ll find that most fears are irrational. You’ll come to find that the fears you have in business only paralyze you from making the best decisions. Try the following 3 steps to overcome your fears:
- Find Out – What are your fears? Write down specifics. Is there one main fear that keeps you from taking action? Is it multiple fears? Write down all your fears on a piece of paper.
Example: I fear that putting time and effort into my own ecommerce business will fail and I’ll end up loosing the respect of my family.
- Describe – Describe each fear you wrote down. How does this fear make you feel? Describe why you’re feeling the fear.
Example: This fear of starting my own ecommerce business makes me feel like I’ll end up failing after putting in a lot of time and energy. I feel this fear because I don’t want to be seen as a failure by others.
- Evaluate – How likely is your fear going to happen? What’s the worst that can happen if your fears come true? Is it even possible for the fear to materialize? Is the fear irrational?
Example: Since I haven’t put any work into building my ecommerce business, I have no idea if the fear is going to come true. If I fail, the worst that could happen to me is that all my close friends and family will look at me as a loser, failure and reject me. Can this fear really materialize? (Give it some real thought) Probably not. Is the fear rational? Probably not.
As you can see in the examples, although the fears and circumstances have been simplified, by determining your fears by putting them on paper, then describing your fears in detail, you can start to understand your fears. By taking the third step and evaluating your fears, you’ll begin to see that most fears you feel will never materialize in real life. If you do find your fears are based on reality and have a high chance of occurring, what can you do to avoid the problem that lies ahead? If your fears are paralyzing you, what can you do to change it to a fear that you can take action on?
Keep in mind, most of our fears are just the ‘anticipation’ of failure and not failure itself. We’ve all failed multiple times and have learned from them to produce a better, more mature self.
Comment below and let us know what fear holds you back the most. What’s your plan to overcome that fear?