Overcome Your Fear Of Failing When Starting A Business

How To Overcome Your Fear Of Failing When Starting A Business

The following article was written by a personal friend of mine, Brad Johns.  Brad is the owner of the website The Positive Project which is focused on Motivating, Inspiring and Daring Others To Dream Big.  Most of the motivational Monday posts I have are a video with a few inspiring words, but after seeing the project that Brad is working on, I thought he would be a great fit to come and guest blog on OHP.  I’ve followed his blog for some time now and love the content, I recommend that you check it out too.  I’ll let Brad take it from here.

Do you want to start your own business?  If so, you’re not alone.

Over 63% of Americans would like to start their own business.  That means over 199 million Americans want to be their own bosses.  There’s only one problem…most of them never get around to making it happen.  Unfortunately, the overwhelming majority of these individuals take the so called “safe” route and end up spending their lives working for someone else.

In fact, only 13% of the U.S. population has started their own businesses.  That’s right…ONLY 13%!  That’s a lot of people not going after their dreams.

So, why is it that so many people never start their own businesses?  Unfortunately, it’s because most people are afraid of failing.  They are so afraid of failing that they don’t even try.  They give up before they even get started.

Imagine all the amazing innovative ideas, creative thoughts, and amazing businesses that never happen.   The millions of aspirations, goals and dreams that die all because people are too afraid of failing; too afraid to try.

“The graveyard is the richest place on earth, because it is here that you will find all the hopes and dreams that were never fulfilled, the books that were never written, the songs that were never sung, the inventions that were never shared, the cures that were never discovered, all because someone was too afraid to take that first step, keep with the problem, or determined to carry our their dream.” –Les Brown

If you want to start your own business, don’t let the fear of failing get the best of you.  Here are 10 things you can do to help you overcome your fear of failing and help you start your business…

1. Be Willing To Take Risks

“If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.”- Jim Rohn

When starting a business you are pursuing the unknown.  There are no guarantees.  What separates those who have had great success in business from everyone else is that they are more open to taking risks in order to succeed.  They don’t know how things will work out, no one does, but this doesn’t stop them.  They take risks in order to achieve their goals…that’s why they succeed.

The real risk is not trying!  Consider the price of not taking action.  You will be just like the overwhelming majority of people who dream of starting a business but never do.  One day you will look back on your life and wonder what would have happened if you had given it a shot.  Don’t let that happen to you.  Be open to taking risks!  That’s the only way you will succeed!

Remember this…No risk, no reward!

2. Believe In Yourself

“Whether you think that you can, or think you can’t, you are usually right.” –Henry Ford

If you’re starting a business you have to believe in yourself.  If you believe that you can accomplish your goals and dreams, you are more than half way there.  To achieve anything in life you must believe in yourself and what you are capable of.

Many people do not even try to start a business because they don’t believe that they can do it.  They lack self-confidence.  They don’t believe in themselves and they don’t think that they are capable of achieving their goals and dreams.  Work on building up your self-confidence.  Self-confidence promotes decisiveness, and decisiveness promotes action.

Believe in yourself, your capabilities, and your goals!  Anything is possible if you believe it!

3. Make Meaning

“The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” –Steve Jobs

If you’re planning on starting a business don’t do it simply for the money.  If you pursue something just for the potential big pay day I can guarantee you one thing…YOU WILL FAIL.  Every business opportunity that I have ever pursued just for money alone has failed…failed miserably!

I have found that if your want to do something great you have to be passionate about it.  You have to do it because you love it.  I’ve learned my lesson and will not pursue something just for the money.  I have to be passionate about my work…I have to know that what I’m doing is making a difference.  When you start something strictly for money, your heart is not into it which makes it impossible to persevere through the difficulties and challenges that you will face.

Instead of just going after money, do something that you absolutely love to do.  Start something that matters.  Start something that has meaning to you, and the rest of the world.  A simple idea can make a difference and have a huge impact on the world.

4. Step Outside Your Comfort Zone

“Everything you want is on the other side of fear” –Jack Canfield 

Whether it is starting a new business, making a big investment or simply trying anything that is new to you it’s going to be uncomfortable because you don’t always know what the outcome will be.  We all have our comfort zones where we feel nice and safe.  There’s always a level of uncertainty and unknowns when trying something new.

It can be scary to step outside your comfort zone, but I’m going to let you in a little secret…EVERYONE is scared to step outside their comfort zone!    The difference between those who succeed and those who don’t is that successful individuals ENJOY stepping outside their comfort zone.  They ENJOY taking risks and trying something new even if it means being scared, uncomfortable and awkward.  Step outside your comfort zone and you will start accomplishing amazing things.

5. Write Down Your Goals

“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible to the visible.” –Tony Robbins

Do you write down your goals?  If not, you should.  Writing down your goals clarifies your purpose and your vision.  It gives you more direction in life.  Studies have shown that only 3% of people write down their goals.  Those 3% are typically the top achievers in the world.

A goal is just an idea until you write it down.  By writing down your goals you can more effectively plan how you are going to achieve your goals for your life and your business.  I keep an ongoing list of my life’s goals and I look at the list at least three times a day.   I recommend you do the same.  This helps keep me centered and focused on what I want to achieve during my life.  Start making that list!

6. Ask For Feedback

“We all need people who will give us feedback.  That’s how we improve.” –Bill Gates

Feedback is the breakfast of champions.  Many times we think we are doing a great job at something but we really aren’t.  We think that our ideas are great and that we are on the right track even though we could be wrong.  We are blind to our performance and ideas at times.  But being open to asking others to critique you will only make you and your business better.  Ask people you respect and potential customers what they think about your business concept and your potential product or service.

Here’s the thing…most people aren’t going to give you feedback.  Most people are uncomfortable with telling someone where they messed up, or how they can improve their business.  People are nice and they don’t want to hurt your feelings.  So you have to ask them for their honest feedback!  By asking them you are giving them permission to be open and transparent with you…just remember they are trying to help you so don’t take it personally.

7. Start Reading

“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.” -Mark Twain

What do you know about the business that you want to start?  If you don’t know enough about it, read up on it. Do your research. We live in a time where information is at our fingertips.  There are books and articles on everything these days.  If you don’t know the answer to something, I guarantee the answer is out there, you just have to find it.

If you want to become an expert in a particular field, all you have to do is read for one hour a day for three years on that particular subject.

Brian Tracy says, “Read at least one hour per day in your chosen field. One hour a day will translate into approximately one book a week. One book a week will translate into approximately fifty books over the next twelve months. If you read an hour a day, one book per week, you will be an expert in your field within three years. Through continuous learning, you will be a national authority in five years, and you will be an international authority in seven years.”

When you’re starting a business you have to be strong mentally.  I recommend not only reading up on how to start a business but also reading self help and self improvement books to keep you focused and motivated.

8. Get A Mentor

“A single conversation across the table with a wise man is better than ten years mere study of books.” -Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

No one can do it alone.  Every person who has achieved success in their lives had the help and assistance from others or a mentor.  When you are starting a business there are many unknowns.  You will be faced with obstacles and challenges that will be difficult to overcome at times.

Wouldn’t you rather learn from someone else’s mistakes instead of learning them on your own?  Having a mentor who has been through the difficulties and obstacles of starting a business will help you in so many ways.  Mentors will tell you what helped them succeed and the mistakes that they made as well.

Find someone who has been successful in the same field or type of business you would like to start and ask them to be your mentor.  I’ve found that most people are willing to help.  Most people will say yes.  Successful individuals want to help others succeed.

9. Be Willing To Fail

“The average entrepreneur fails 3.8 times before he or she finally makes it in business.”  John Maxwell

What is the one thing that the world’s greatest entrepreneurs all have in common?  They aren’t afraid of failure.  In fact, they embrace it!  They are willing to fail and fail often.  Successful entrepreneurs don’t crush it their first time up to bat…on average they fail almost 4 times before hitting one out of the park!

Successful entrepreneurs learn from their failures, make changes, and move on.  If you’re going to start your own business recognize that it’s okay to fail.  You’re going to make mistakes…big mistakes! But that’s ok!  Failure is just a part of the journey to success.

10. Start Today

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do.”  –Mark Twain

A year from now you’ll had wished you started today.   The hardest part of anything is getting started, but it doesn’t have to be. The timing will never be just right, so your start business TODAY!  There is no better time to start than right now!

You don’t have to have it all figured out.  It’s okay to start small! Every big company that you see today was once just an idea.  If you have an idea or business concept that you want to start working on here is a business plan template that I use when writing a business plan.  I hope it helps you get started.

Just remember to have the confidence to move forward, believe in yourself, and take risks!  Tomorrow is promised to no one.  Your time is limited and every day is a gift, so don’t waste it!  Get started!  But most importantly…don’t be afraid of failing!

Start your business today with a video quicktip I created that walks you through the process of getting your website set up in under 5 minutes.

What is it that’s holding you back from starting your business?  What are you waiting for?  Let us know in the comments section below!

 

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Written By Guest Blogger Brad Johns

Brad is a Positive Blogger, Entrepreneur, and Investor

Need more help achieving your goals and dreams?  Check out his blog here.

  • Christine Lucas

    Inspirational!!the greatest fear that anybody for that matter faces is failure.Well,we should face failure to learn.Business is all about sustaining.Success is not the only house here.

    So take the risk and you will either face success or learn a new lesson for greater achievement.

    I came across something useful for business people.Check this out http://bit.ly/1Zh0MX1