As a dreamer, an over-thinker and an introvert with lots of ideas, I know first hand how frightening it can be to put yourself, your ideas and your words out there for all to see. It is the online equivalent of stage fright x100, or at least that’s how it feels!
You know what I’m talking about, right? You’ve got plenty of ideas and truly want to start something of your own; whether it’s a business, a blog, an online store or any combination of those, but you can’t seem to just get started because of your fear of putting yourself out there.
First of all: YOU GOT THIS!
Okay, moving on. Let’s dissect this beast for a sec:
What is it you’re truly afraid of?
When you start thinking critically about what exactly the root of this fear is, you’ll find it easier to find a solution for it. You can’t fix it if you don’t know what the problem is, right?
Think about it. Are you afraid of failure? Of criticism? Of change? Are you doubting your ability to succeed? Are you doubting your abilities in general?
Figure out what it is that truly scares you and find ways to overcome those.
“But Tiff, how the hell do I do that?” you may be asking.
First of all: again, YOU GOT THIS!
Second of all, get this: It’s all in your head. The doubts, the potential failures, the hesitation, the criticism. It’s all in your head, all of it. Oh, and GET THIS: that’s a good thing!
Having it all in your head means you’re in complete control of it, you have the power to change your perspective. You have the power to shift your mindset. You are in control of that fear, and you’re the one who decides whether you will let it define you or empower you.
Shift your mindset
It’s easier said than done, I’ll give you that, but I promise it will be worth it.
Now that you know you’re in control, you have the power to change the way you think about all the things you fear and let your fear fuel your fight. This is how you will overcome those fears.
Say that after thinking about it more carefully, you realized that what you fear is actually failure. It’s the thought of failure that keeps you from putting yourself out there and even giving your idea a try! You can let that fear paralyze you, or you can shift your mindset.
Fear is a natural thing, heck it’s a good thing (in some cases)! It’s when that fear starts getting in our way and preventing us from fulfilling our potential that it becomes an obstacle.
Fearing failure is a common feeling
I was scared sh*tless when I started this blog. I was scared sh*tless to open my own Etsy shop. I was scared every time I hit the ‘publish’ button and put one of my blog posts out there. I was scared to put things in my shop for sale, and I still get like that a lot. I wonder if people will like my content or the items I have in my shop or whether they will hate it and hate me and hate my creations.
What has changed? I actually do it. I actually hit ‘publish’. I actually put products in my shop. I actually try. The fear of failure doesn’t stop me. I know I can’t please everyone, but I know I have something of value to offer, so I offer it.
If you don’t try, you are guaranteeing your failure. So by letting fear paralyze you, you’re actually bringing your fear into existence. Does that make sense? It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Your fear of failure is actually making you fail by default.
Let’s stop that, shall we? Challenge yourself to make that first step. If you want to start your own blog, start by picking a name and getting a free WordPress account. If you want to own your own business, start by creating an action plan. Put one foot in front of the other and soon you’ll look back and realize that you’ve already walked a whole mile.
Do you fear change? Start by listing some of the ways you’re not happy with your current situation, then realize that the only way you’ll be happier with your life is if something changes.
Do you fear criticism? Well, as far as I know, putting yourself out there means opening yourself up to criticism. But I also know that the person that will criticize you, judge you and tear you down the most is yourself. You are the your own toughest critic and most of the people that you’ll come into contact with don’t even have the time to criticize you because they’re busy criticizing themselves! Yeah, some people won’t like you or what you have to offer, but that’s just great! Why? Because that frees you up to work with and positively influence the people that do like you and what you have to offer!
Plus, criticism isn’t always bad! It’s people’s feedback that’ll allow you to continue to grow as a person and as a business, a blogger, a coach, an artist, you name it.
Do you doubt your abilities? DON’T. You have what it takes to succeed, and if you find that you don’t have the knowledge that it takes to succeed in your chosen field, you have what it takes to learn it. You have the drive and the passion to take you where you want to go and if you don’t – well, then you might want to go where your passion and drive do take you!
Crush your Fears: Download this Worksheet
I made you a Fear Crushing Worksheet for you to download, print out and use to work on squashing that fear into smithereens!
Download it by clicking the button below:
Here’s a quick rundown of how to use the worksheet:
- Identify your core fear – write it at the top.
- Try to break down that fear into manageable parts. What does this mean? If you fear failure, you’ll break down what failure means to you. This could look something like this: Fear of failure/not being successful -> not being able to live an abundant life -> not being able to excel in my field -> not being able to provide value in my work -> not having the tools to create valuable things
Once you’ve broken down your core fear into smaller fears, start thinking of ways you can move past each of these smaller barriers to crush your core fear.
- How can you challenge those smaller fears (and ultimately that core fear)? Find ways you can work on moving past each barrier and write it down. Start from the last one and go from there. This could look like this:I have the tools to create valuable things: ___________ courses, further education, mentors, etc.
I provide value in my work: __________ list the ways you plan on or already provide value in your work.
I excel in my field: ______ list the qualities that make you great at what you do + the qualities you’re ready to acquire to excel in your field.
I live an abundant life: _________ list the blessings in your life, the positive things that make your life already abundant + the ones you’re working on to make your life more abundant.
I am successful: __________ list all the ways you are already being successful + the successes you envision for your near future.
- Write down the affirmations that best fit your case and that will motivate you most to keep working to crush your fears. Use your smaller fears and turn them around!Note that in #3 I wrote the examples as affirmations. You can use your smaller fears and change the wording to make them into positive affirmations (write them as though they are already a reality. Example: ‘I am successful’ as opposed to ‘I will be successful’
- Write down one of your big goals that you want to accomplish but haven’t because of your core fear. Decide that you want to accomplish your goals more than you are afraid of it.
- In this space, you’ll write down resources that you find helpful to face and crush your fear. You can write anything that inspires you here. Maybe you’re a part of a Facebook group that constantly makes you want to strive for more. Perhaps you have a great support system in your family and friends or a website you go to when you want to become motivated.
- Have a serious talk with yourself to determine what it is you really fear.
- Realize that it’s all in your head and that you are in control.
- Shift your mindset. Find a way for your fears to strengthen you instead of stopping you.
- Challenge yourself to act in spite of your fears. It’s the only way to overcome them.
- Last of all: YOU GOT THIS! Get on with your bad self and go conquer your fears and then THE WORLD!
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