Fear is a normal experience for all of us. Even though you may be a fairly courageous person, it doesn’t mean you aren’t afraid of things from time to time.
Has anyone ever encouraged you to do something they felt you would be very good at like applying for an upcoming manager position, writing a book, or speaking professionally? How did you respond? Did they scare you or inspire you?
Often times we make poor decisions based on what we fear and self-doubt, and it isn’t very rationale.
- “I would love to take that new position, but I am afraid others will think that I am incompetent. Maybe next time.”
- “Write a book? I would love to, but what if no one reads it? I need more experience before I write a book.”
- “I would love to make a career of speaking in front of others, but I get too nervous before getting up in front of people. I need to read more books on speaking.”
The harsh reality is, next time won’t make a difference in you taking that new position, you will still be just as scared. More experience won’t magically make you take the leap in writing the book. And reading more books on speaking won’t make you less nervous or even better at speaking.
It’s time to put off self-doubt and conquer the fear. What are you waiting for? Here are five tips to help whether you are facing fears that are paralyzing your ability to act as a leader, hesitating on taking the leap into something new, or are generally worried and sick you don’t know enough or are good enough.
1. Recognize that you aren’t the only one. As has already been highlighted above, each of us feels self-doubt and fear from time to time. Realizing that everyone, including CEO’s and many other leaders at some of the biggest companies in the world experience this from time to time can help you in understanding you aren’t alone, and it is fairly normal to have self-doubt and fear.
2. Analyze the source. Where is the self-doubt coming from? Is it valid? Is what you are feeling realistic? Take time arguing against your self-doubt and fear. Or possibly ask someone for their opinion. Others don’t have a vested interest in your fears and can help you rationally think and encourage you to take the right steps whatever they might be.
3. Engage in “self-talk.” Erase the negative perceptions you have built about yourself. Tell yourself, “I can do this.” Watch this cute little girl for lessons in positive affirmations. Click here.
4. Realize that nobody is hoping you fail. Well most people aren’t. And those that do aren’t worth your time and energy in worrying about any way. Most people genuinely hope you succeed.
5. Do it. Just face your fears. The only true failure, is not trying at all. If you do it, and you fail, so what. Learn a lesson and move on. Most of what we learn in life is by failure any way, so why fear it? You didn’t just start walking, riding a bike or leading people without some mistakes. Sure you have had some failures, but you also have had a ton of successes.
Question: What other ways have you conquered self-doubt and fear? I would love to hear what you have to say in the comments section below.
If you enjoyed this post and would like to share it with your team, colleagues or anyone else, please “Share” it, “Tweet” it, “LinkedIn” it, “Email” it, “Google Plus” it, or “Like” it, by using one of the buttons below. Thanks friends!