How to push through fear of failure
Fear of failure is a common hurdle when it comes to goal-setting. Instead of letting this fear prevent you from moving forward, why not grab that feeling by the horns and let it drive you? Tim Ferriss, creator of the four-hour work week (fourhourworkweek.com), has created a three-step exercise to help overcome fears…
To begin, divide a piece of paper into three columns. Then think of a goal that is important to you but you’ve kept yourself from attempting.
- In the first column, write down all the things that could go wrong should your attempt fail. Think of the most terrible things possible.
- In the second column, determine ways you can mitigate the possibility of each of those bad consequences from happening.
- In the third column, think of how you would recover from each of the scenarios you imagined and wrote in the first column.
As Ferriss told Business Insider:
“You come away from that exercise realising, ‘Wow, I was getting extremely anxious and all worked up over something that is completely preventable, reversible, or just not a very big deal.’”
Remember that your failures can be stepping stones to your success. Inventor James Dyson said, “I made 5,127 prototypes of my vacuum before I got it right. There were 5,126 failures. But I learned from each one. That’s how I came up with a solution. So I don’t mind failure.”
Watch and learn
Need some inspiration from others who’ve done it? These videos from ted.com will get you in the zone:
- J.K. Rowling’s Harvard University commencement speech, “The fringe benefits of failure”
- Tim Ferriss’ TED talk “Why you should define your fears instead of your goals”
- Jia Jiang’s TEDxMtHood talk, “What I learned from 100 days of rejection”
- Steve Jobs’ Stanford University commencement speech, “How to live before you die”
- Derek Sivers’ TED talk “Keep your goals to yourself”
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