Hey entrepreneurs! I know that feeling all too well. Wondering if you’re on the right path, questioning whether all the time, money, and energy you’re pouring into your business will actually pay off. It’s natural to have those doubts and fears when you’re starting something of your own. Trust me, I’ve been there.
Sometimes, you’re gonna have moments where you’re not so sure if things will work out. It happens. But here’s the thing: you gotta take a step back, look at the situation from a different angle, and change your perspective.
I get it, there are financial insecurities, setbacks that come and go, and the usual challenges life throws at you. It can be overwhelming, no doubt. Most people who dream of being entrepreneurs, they give up when things get tough. They think they don’t have what it takes or the journey is just too hard. They’re scared of the hard work and the trials they have to face in order to succeed. Fear gets the best of them, and they quit.
But here’s the deal: when it comes to fear, you only have two choices. You can forget everything and run, or you can face everything and rise. It may seem obvious, right? Well, let me break it down for you.
Choosing to forget everything and run might seem like the easy way out, but trust me, it’s gonna leave you stuck in the mud of mediocrity. Your dreams and goals will suffocate under the weight of fear. It ain’t pretty. On the other hand, if you choose to face everything and rise, you’ll conquer your fear with sheer determination.
And guess what? When you come out on the other side, you’ll be stronger emotionally, tougher mentally, and you’ll taste the sweet fruits of success. Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.
In this guide, we’re gonna tackle five common fears that haunt entrepreneurs, and I’ll show you how to rise above them and claim the life and business you were born to rock! Let’s do this!
Fear of the Unknown
Alright, let’s tackle one of the biggest fears that entrepreneurs face: the fear of the unknown. When you’re venturing into your own business, no matter how much research you’ve done or how prepared you are, there will always be a level of uncertainty. It’s just how it goes. Remember, you can’t explore new horizons if you’re afraid to leave the safety of the shore.
You gotta push through and follow your heart, even when it’s beating faster than a jackhammer. Back in 1999, there was this movie called “3 Kings.” In one scene, a young soldier, scared out of his mind, approached Sergeant Major Archie Gates (played by George Clooney) with a question. And you know what Gates said? Brace yourself for some colorful language: “The way this works is… you do the thing you’re scared sh*tless of, and you get the courage after you do it. Not before you do it.”
Crass as it may sound, that statement holds true in all areas of life. If you’re worried that you might not have the skills to build a successful business, just go for it anyway. Learn as you go. You gotta have faith and take that first step, even if you can’t see the whole staircase. The best way to conquer your fear of the unknown is to have unwavering faith.
Believe in yourself and what you’re striving to achieve.
Every single day, there are countless people dreaming of starting a business and making a quick buck. But most of them fail and give up. The path to success is littered with the shattered dreams of those who tried and quit. They quit because they didn’t believe in themselves, and fear took over. As John Stewart Mill once said, “One person with belief is equal to a force of ninety-nine who only have interest.”
Next time you’re plagued by doubts and fears, take a moment to ask yourself why you’re feeling that way. Maybe you’ve been making a steady income from your side hustle, but you’re afraid to quit your day job because of the security it provides. By understanding the root of your fear, you’ll realize that what you truly fear is being left without money if your new business doesn’t work out.
Once you grasp that, you can make a plan of action to overcome that concern. Start saving up enough money to sustain yourself for at least six months in case of unexpected setbacks. If you let your fears control you and hold you back without analyzing them, your life will stagnate, and more often than not, you’ll end up throwing in the towel. The only way to progress is to keep moving forward, no matter what obstacles come your way.
The Fear of Failure
Let’s dive into another fear that holds so many entrepreneurs back: the fear of failure. This fear has paralyzed more people than any other fear out there. It often disguises itself in various forms. If you’re worried that all your hard work will be in vain and you won’t make any money, that’s the fear of failure. Many people simply say they don’t want to waste their time on something that might not work.
But here’s the hard truth: you’ll never know unless you try. It might take you three long years to build a business that brings in six figures annually. But guess what? If the fear of failure keeps you from taking that first step, you’ll never discover what could have been.
Those three years will pass anyway, and chances are your life will stay pretty much the same. But if you had pursued your goals, you could be enjoying a six-figure income by now. See, many people fear failure because they’re scared of looking foolish in front of their friends and family, or they worry about facing criticism from their peers.
But here’s the reality: what others think of you should be the least of your concerns. In fact, when you strive to better yourself and do things others don’t dare to do, your friends and family might become your harshest critics. The truth is, by making progress and achieving your goals, you inadvertently shine a light on their own failures.
It threatens them, and the only way they can feel better is by pulling you down to their level, maintaining the status quo. It’s a harsh truth of life. But when you realize that other people’s opinions don’t actually affect you in any meaningful way, the fear of looking foolish fades away on its own. Lao Tzu once wisely said, “Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner.”
The best way to confront the fear of failure is to ask yourself: What’s the worst that could happen? Then, come up with strategies and countermeasures to prevent those potential failures. Take time to visualize yourself overcoming obstacles and succeeding. Repeat this visualization process daily, even a few times a day. It will build your faith and belief in yourself, empowering you to keep moving forward.
Remember, the fear of failure shouldn’t hold you back from chasing your dreams. Embrace the possibilities and trust in yourself. Success often lies on the other side of fear.
The Fear That You Are Not Good Enough
This fear often arises when you’ve faced a significant failure in the past. Many people struggle academically because they lacked interest or natural talent in the subjects they were forced to learn. For example, a girl gifted in art and writing may have struggled with math and science, ultimately not progressing beyond high school. This failure can make her feel incapable of succeeding in anything, despite her immense potential for success.
The brilliant Albert Einstein once wisely said, “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” The essence of this statement is that you shouldn’t judge yourself based on academic performance or past experiences. Countless stories exist of individuals who faced numerous failures but eventually achieved unimaginable success once they discovered their true calling.
Never give up on yourself. Fortune favors the courageous. When building a business, you’re bound to face a learning curve. It’s inevitable. You’ll make mistakes, hire the wrong people, purchase the wrong products, and waste time and money. It’s all part of the process and can’t be entirely avoided. However, if you quit during this stage because you believe you’re not capable enough, you’ll NEVER improve.
You only get better by continuously learning and progressing. Many beginners look at highly successful entrepreneurs and feel intimidated. They believe that these individuals are smarter, wealthier, and better than them. But comparing yourself to others is a grave mistake that will always leave you feeling dissatisfied. You may be comparing your beginning to someone else’s end. It’s unfair to yourself, and you’ll only hinder your own progress. Your focus should be on being the best version of yourself.
Here’s the truth: everybody starts as a beginner. Overnight success is a myth. There’s a journey you must embark upon and navigate. Fearing that you’ll never amount to much will only lead to giving up before you even start. You must have confidence in yourself. Every little failure you encounter along the way should be seen as a valuable learning experience. Don’t make assumptions based on incomplete data. The more you learn, the better you’ll become.
Embrace mistakes and failures, for they are not the opposite of success; they are integral to it. You are already enough just as you are. You simply need to believe it.
The Fear That You’re Late or Too Old
This fear is a major one, but let me tell you, it’s completely unfounded. You may have heard statements like “The good old days are over” or “You’re too old to start a business.” But let me assure you, those statements couldn’t be further from the truth. Entrepreneurship is a timeless pursuit, and every single day, people just like you are achieving success. It’s never too late to start, and there’s no better time than now.
You’re never too old to set new goals or dream new dreams. Take, for example, Stan Lee, who created his first hit comic close to his 39th birthday. Henry Ford introduced the Model T car at the age of 45. Ray Croc started McDonald’s when he was 52, and Colonel Sanders franchised KFC at the age of 62. These individuals achieved remarkable success at various stages of their lives. Age is never a barrier. So let go of this fear and start pursuing your dreams today.
Remember the wise Chinese proverb that says, “The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” Don’t dwell on missed opportunities or the illusion of being too old. Embrace the present moment and take action. It’s never too late to create something extraordinary.
The fifth and final fear is not really a fear, but rather a belief pattern that holds many people back from achieving success. Our beliefs about our capabilities and limitations are often shaped by what we witnessed, heard, and were told while growing up.
Take, for example, individuals who struggle with weight and believe they are destined to be overweight. If their family members are overweight, they may buy into the idea that they are genetically predisposed to obesity. While genetics can play a role, it’s important to recognize that food choices, eating habits, and attitudes towards food are often passed down from parents to children.
However, if these individuals choose to adopt a clean eating routine, exercise regularly, and monitor their calorie intake, they can likely shed those extra pounds and even become the fittest person in their family. But it requires breaking free from limited thinking and believing in their own potential.
The same applies to individuals who grew up in low-income families where scarcity mindset was prevalent. If they were constantly told that money was hard to come by and that rich people were inherently evil and greedy, their subconscious mind may prevent them from building wealth, as they wouldn’t want to be associated with those negative qualities.
Overcoming these limiting self-beliefs is a challenging task, but it is possible. You must be aware of your thoughts and actively work on correcting them. Once you realize that you are the only limit to your own success, your life will transform, and you can overcome this obstacle. You are deserving of success.
By now, you understand that fear is often based on false evidence appearing real. The most effective way to conquer fear is through action. While analyzing your fears can be helpful, taking action is the ultimate antidote. Do what scares you the most, and watch as the fear dissipates.
Never let fear dictate your future. Create a solid plan, have backup strategies in place, and relentlessly pursue your goals until you succeed. Even in the darkest moments, when everything seems on the verge of collapse and your fears tell you that failure is inevitable, stand firm and keep pushing forward.
Remember, it’s always darkest before the dawn. Keep going. You have the strength and resilience to overcome any challenge that comes your way. Believe in yourself and embrace the journey towards your dreams. You’ve got this!