Fear of Failure

Sometimes trying something new or dreaming big is a little scary. The fear factor, and especially the fear of failure can creep in. We might dream a little, but then the ‘what if’s?’ creep in and quickly snap us back to reality.

What if something goes wrong? What if it doesn’t work? What if I don’t make it? What if I look ridiculous? What will people think?

But what if we were to view life as a series of experiments rather than a pass or fail kind of deal? How freeing would that be? We try something new, we reflect on the experience and then learn from it by celebrating what went well and identifying ways to do better next time. Trying something new and it not working isn’t failure, it’s simply learning. The only ways to truly fail would be to either fail to learn from mistakes, or to not try at all.

Imagine if you’d never tried to walk. I know you can’t remember back to that stage, but you’ve seen it in action I’m sure. A little baby trying, hoping, willing itself to walk. How many times do they fall over? Heaps! How many times do they not make it? Lots! And usually they have a little chuckle, think for a moment then get right back up and have another go. They keep going until they get there. So many of us take one little tumble and assume we’re a failure and it’s better to throw that idea in the bin. What a tragedy it could be if we give up too soon! I love this quote by Thomas Edison who invented the lightbulb. He had many ‘failed’ inventions before he created something that forever changed the course of humanity. Reflecting on his past ‘failures’ he said this. “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

So today, instead of thinking what might go wrong, start focusing on what could go right. Fear of failure can paralyze us and keep us from experiencing some amazing things life has to offer. It can keep us as a spectator on the outskirts of life rather than getting in the game. Sure it might be less scary, and at times less painful, but we also rob ourselves of the truly exhilarating highs of being in the game when we choose to play it safe.

So my challenge to you today, dream big! Go on, I dare you. In fact, I double dare you. I dare you to dream big. I dare you to pray big. I dare you to believe big. And once you’ve done all that, I dare you to live big. Don’t live on the sidelines of your own life. This life isn’t a dress rehearsal. So, get your brave on, get dreaming and get in the game! You’ve got this!

Photo by Mateusz Dach from Pexels

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