Even the most courageous people confess that even they have fears. If they seem not to be afraid of spiders or height, it does not matter that they do not have any psychological fears or phobias.
Fear of failure comes into our life as soon as we gain life experience. Look at children: they have no fear at all because they have no idea what to expect, how it works, and what are the consequences if something goes wrong. Unfortunately (or fortunately, who knows), we are no longer kids and the fear of failure comes with our age.
One of the most interesting things about the fear of failure is that this feeling comes from our mind. Long story short, we are the authors and so-called creators of our fears.
There is no doubt that everyone is afraid of making a mistake. It is our human nature. But not everyone is aware of how to conquer the fear of failure, the feelings of anxiety and confusion, and benefit from our mistakes.
Here are some tips for overcoming fear of failure.
1. Change the Attitude
One of the greatest American inventors Thomas Edison, who was the inventor of the first incandescent light bulb, after a range of faults said the wisest words among all the inspirational quotes about failures, which help me in the most frustrating life moments. He said: “I have not failed. I’ve found 10.000 ways that won’t work’.
The point of these words is that the problem of failure fear lies in our attitude towards it. If we perceive a fault as a mistake that brings nothing but blame, we will prevent ourselves not only from doing mistakes but from any actions at all, which is impossible.
Life is impossible without failures. No one’s perfect. But if we perceive a fault as an experience, as an opportunity of gaining knowledge, mastering skills, or at least one more way that won’t work, we will move forward and achieve success.
2. Remember You Are Not Alone
The world is full of interesting, successful, prosperous, outstanding people. All of them were forced towards the experience of overcoming a fear.
The British writer J.K. Rowling went through rejection 12 times before becoming popular. The “Harry Potter” fantasy series, written by J.K. Rowling, were refused 12 times by different British publishing houses. There is no need in mentioning that now “Harry Potter” is a worldwide bestseller and most popular book in the world.
The editor of the newspaper, where Walt Disney used to work, dismissed him by the lack of creativity. It was not the only Disney’s misfortune. Later on, he was dismissed from the Kansas City Star, as he was blamed in good imagination and creative ideas deficiency. There is no need in mentioning that Walt Disney is a pioneer of the American animation industry.
One of the TV producers told to American talk show host Oprah Winfrey, that she was ungifted and unskillful news host. He blamed her for not being professional enough to work in the night talk show. There is no need in mentioning that now Oprah is the author of ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’, which was the highest-rated television program of its kind in the history of the world television.
You are not the only representative of people who experienced a misstep. Always remember that the famous people went through ‘hardships to the stars’ to become those who we can admire today.
3. Learn from Mistakes
Each of our mistakes is a perfect, precious opportunity to gain experience no one can share with us. We can not truly learn from the mistakes described even in the most sophisticated and complex books. To cut a long story short, no one learns from other’s mistakes.
We are the results of our past actions and failures. If we had not gone through all the obstacles on our way, we would have never been who we are today. The ability to learn from mistakes is the indicator of your adolescence, your ability to take the responsibility for your life and your actions, as well as the ability to analyze your errors make you a powerful adult who can find corresponding solutions and move forward.
Being an ESL teacher, I always face a very common for all the foreign language learners problems. Students do not want to speak because they are afraid of doing mistakes and making fools of themselves. They suppose that only after gaining an Intermediate or even Upper-Intermediate level will they start speaking without mistakes and this is their fatal failure.
Being a teacher, I realize that here making mistakes and overcoming failure is the only way to learn a foreign language.
Mistakes are considered to be normal. Learn from it.
4. Nothing Awful Happens
Another useful method to get rid of failure fear is to realize that nothing terrible happens. If you make a mistake no one is going to die, unless you are a doctor, because here we speak of ordinary non-fatal failures.
Don’t be afraid to fail, just do what you have to do. Do your best and be afraid of doing nothing. The way most people are covered with failures. What the most important is the ability to recover from them.
For most successful people the bottom of any pit is a rubber, not a concrete. You hit the rubber, and push off it, moving towards your goals by using the energy of your flight to catch other useful opportunities.
5. Ask Good Questions
Have you ever asked yourself a question: ‘why am I afraid to succeed?’ Speaking of failures, what frightens us most? Obscurity. We are afraid of mistakes because we do not know what to expect next. Here comes the method of two powerful questions. Ask yourself: ‘What is the worst thing that can happen if I do it?.
The second question sounds like: ‘What is the best thing that can happen if I do it?’
After getting ready your brain to the worst and best scenario, you visualize your biggest fear and, thus, you become much stronger and now know what to expect.