Right, we all have dreams and different goals that we would love to achieve in our lifetime.
Unfortunately because of our perfectionist society and our convectional educational systems, we have been conditioned to believe that failing is a bad thing. That the consequence of failing should be punishment or you should suffer, but the truth is; failing is just part of the equation to succeed in any aspect of our lives.
Why Do We Feel Afraid?
Fear it self, is simply part of our defensive mechanism. The adrenaline released when we are afraid helps us to be prepared for action. I often hear people saying; ‘I just do not know what do to, I have a lot of ideas but I am afraid of failing.’ At first it amuses me and I become happy, because I know that there is already the seed for huge achievements and perhaps this person’s ideas may be the ones changing the world in the next years to come.
If you are also in this situation all I have I have to tell you is; Do not worry. Yes, do not worry. You are not the only one in the world with this fear and I am being realistic by saying do not worry. Of course failure is not the alternative to success. No one really likes to fail and it’s something to be avoided, but it’s also only a temporary setback on a bigger, more significant course. Everybody encounters failure at one point or another. What truly matters is how you react to and learn from that failure.
As humans we only learn by experiments, trying new things, doing what at the first impression will seem impossible, in other words, we learn by making mistakes. The good news is that there have been people before us who probably tried to do what we plan to do, and you do not have to be the one making those mistakes in order to learn from them. On the other hand, the bad news is that for a huge number of lessons you will only learn through failure. I do not know if you can call learning something bad but that is the worst thing that can happen.
What If I Try And Fail?
Failing is a word, it is an occasion, not a person. Failing at something that you are doing, does not make you a failure, only a wiser human being. I guess if you have decided to read this post, it is because deep inside you know you have something big that desires expansion, and unlike the majority of people, you do not feel comfortable letting your dreams and your huge ideas die as a result of your inability to control your fear.
Let’s look at some examples of people that had the same thought as you may be having now, and how did they react:
Sir Isaac Newton’s mother pulled him out of school as a boy because he failed miserably.
He started working on his parent’s farm but he was not a good farmer too, so her mother let him finish his basic education and was eventually persuaded to allow him to enroll in Cambridge University. Newton went on to become one of the greatest scientists of all time, revolutionizing physics and mathematics.
Oprah Winfrey was publicly fired from her first television job as an anchor in Baltimore for getting “too emotionally invested in her stories.”
Instead of giving up or being demoralized, she rebounded and became the undisputed queen of television talk shows before amassing a media empire.
Steve Jobs was fired from a company he co-founded Jobs in his 20s when Apple became a massive empire, but when he was 30, Apple’s board of directors decided to fire him.
Devastated by the failure, he used it as fuel to founded a new company, NeXT, which was then bought by Apple as a strategy to bring Steve back to the company. He returned the company and transformed it once again to the point where according to Forbes, it is since 2011 the world’s most valuable brand.
Everyone knows him for his fortune and his gigantic empire know as Microsoft, but what most of us do not know is that Bill Gates didn’t earn his fortune in a straight line to success. Gates entered the entrepreneurial scene with a company called Traf-O-Data, which processed and analyzed the data.
The product barely even worked. It was a complete disaster. However, the failure did not hold Gates back from exploring new opportunities, and a few years later, he created his first Microsoft product and the company turned him into what he is today.
Walt Disney was told he lacked creativity.
One of the most creative geniuses of the 20th century was once fired from a newspaper because he was told he lacked creativity. Trying to persevere, Disney formed his first animation company, which was called Laugh-O-Gram Films. He raised $15,000 for the company but eventually was forced to close Laugh-O-Gram, following the close of an important distributor partner.
Desperate and out of money, Disney found his way to Hollywood and faced even more criticism and failure until finally, his first few classic films started to skyrocket in popularity.
Imagine how would the world be today, if they decided to ignore their ideas because of the fear of failure? Imagine if your idea would be revolutionizing just as theirs? So why not give it a try?
The main problem is not the fear of failure itself, but it is the fact that we become stationery and we end up not acting. Just to illustrate and without going so far to the times when I decided to create a website, I will talk about now, as I write this post. I am nervous too, and I am afraid of failing as well. Failing to bring up your moral, failing to convey the message as it should be, failing to pass the message like a friend and like a person who understands exactly what you are going through, but do you know what I did with this tremendous fear? I used it as fuel. Fuel to provide the best article that I could on this topic, and of course there will always be room for improvements but because of this fear I am capable of writing the best article that you could ever receive from me.
I know that by now you are aware of the fact that being afraid to fail is normal, and that everyone who achieves big things feels this emotion as well. The difference is that they use this fear as an inspiration to continue improving on themselves, in order to bring to the world the best that could ever come from them.
Now you know that you just have to act, but I will not leave you alone with this very important task. So I prepared for you another article with practical steps on How To Overcome This Fear.
I would be glad to read your thoughts about this article in the comments section below and please share it with friends, you never know who may need these words as well!