Letting go of the fear of failure in order to reach for success

Rock climberHow easy do you think it would be too pick up a watermelon while holding a hand full of rocks? Chances are either the rocks fall out or your smash the watermelon in trying. Success is a big treat many strive to attain in their lives, however, reaching high levels of success often require grabbing for your dreams with both hands.  Making this reach often seems a lot easier than the reality as it means abandoning other coping methods we have learned throughout our lives to cushion or hearts and minds from when we fall.  Even without recognizing it these methods become a part of our way to survive the pitfalls and ensure we weather the storms that come without completely destroying.  High levels of success require some levels of risk and learning how to deal with the fear of failure is a big step in taking the plunge and diving with both hands towards your success.  Here are some ways to let go of the fear and commit to success.

Facing Fear. Fear of failure is one that crosses the mind of most people when reaching for success.  This fear can be depilating as it can seem like an easier option to live with the potential of what could have been instead of the reality of no.  Not fully facing the possibility of failure makes it is a lot easier to reach for the lower rungs of success and stick with the risk level that you feel pretty confident that you can beat.  At least you know what you are getting instead of the risk of failing that comes with reaching higher. The scary thing about big leaps in success is that it is often hidden behind a dimly lit corner, requiring you to take some steps in the dark.  To combat this fear you rely on the experiences and skills that have gotten you this far and in understanding that even if you don’t make it you will still add to your knowledge base and walk away better prepared for the next round.  The fact you are well armed in fighting failure is a good way to guide you through the darkness of doubt that the fear of failure instills.

Breaking old habits. There are patterns we set in our lives that stick with us from very young throughout our lives if we don’t put in the work to change them. Perhaps that habit is tardiness, or procrastination or maybe even a negative attitude but they all work to support the illusion that failure is the worst possible option.  Identifying these bad habits in ourselves and putting in the work to correct the bad habits shines the light on how success is usually within reach, you just have to stretch out to win.

Considering the alternative. The fear of failure sells the dream that your pride and self-confidence would not and could not survive the failure and therefore it’s better to not even try. The truth is when people look back on their regrets in life the fear of not trying often trumps the fear of failure as a lifelong regret.  Our limits are never known unless they are explored, challenged and even re-challenged.  The fear of not trying leaves the sting of untapped potential that you have to live with forever.  Even when you experience failure you quickly learn it’s rarely as bad as we imagine it to be and even it is that time and patience can really heal all wounds.

Plan. Facing your fear because you’re prepared and being fearless because you are stupid are not the same thing.  Instead of ignoring the fear of failure, letting it fuel your success gives you the offensive strategy you need to be prepared for the mystery of what lies ahead.  The possibility of failure can inspire you to think of alternatives, do your research, and choose your strategy carefully, all of which work to get you through the darkness that comes with reaching for success.

Jump. Planning is pointless if you can’t summon the courage to jump when you need to towards your success.  If you are not careful planning can become a crutch to hinder the commitment you need to jump with both feet.  No matter how much you plan the truth is that part of the fear of success and of failure is that you cannot see all the obstacles in your way and therefore cannot plan for everything.  Being prepared means you have done the leg work but also that you are responsive enough to begin the run and make changes along the route in order to reach your true possibilities.

The fears of failure and of success are often different sides to the same coin. You have to choice one and commit to it in order to win big.

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