Overcoming fear of failure is the first step to success. Fear of failure, also known as atychiphobia, is the feeling of dread that you are not going to meet up with your expectations. This fright comes in the form of extreme worry, fear of work, or unwillingness to work toward a task, negative thoughts, procrastination, and even low self-esteem, which makes you believe that you are not good enough to do something, or that you are going to disappoint yourself, or all those that are looking up to you. This fear can really hold you from moving forward in life. We all experience this dread in businesses, academics, marriage, and other life endeavours.
One of the disadvantages of living with atychiphobia is that it holds you from pursuing your goals. People who live with the fear of failure always have the feeling that they are not going to perform well or measure up to their expectations. And this anxiety discourages them from trying something new to better their life.
On the other hand, the fear of failure has its own advantages. One of them is that it compels you to work hard, and stay focused to ensure that you meet up with your targets.
Failure isn’t a bad thing. It is the key to success. Failure gives you the experience you need to be successful. “Experience is the best teacher,” they said. So, you need to stop being scared of failing, that is why I wrote this post to help you overcome the fear of failure in your life.
Causes of Atychiphobia
One of the factors that instil fear of failure in people is past traumatic experiences. Someone who has failed before will likely be scared of trying something new, less they fail again. Another factor includes higher expectations from family, friends or even yourself. These expectations bring anxiety when you are not sure if you are going to meet up with those targets or goals.
Examples of fear of failure
- Unwillingness to work toward your goals or try something new
- Low self-esteem (which makes you believe that you don’t have the necessary skills or knowledge to succeed)
- The dread that you aren’t going to meet up with your expectations
- Constantly worrying and complaining about what you are planning to do
- Giving yourself some reasons why is not going to work
5 Signs that fear of failure is holding you back
1. You don’t feel motivated to try something new
When you are living with the fear of failure, you feel reluctant and unmotivated to take a step forward. This comes in the form of procrastination, laziness or unwillingness to work towards your goals. All these stop you from moving forward in life.
2. You’re finding it difficult to stay focused
When you are overtaken by atychiphobia, you will always find it difficult to stay focused. Instead of working on the task before, you will often distract yourself with other activities, or even give your time to insignificant things. The fear of failure makes you waste your time doing nothing.
3. You’re seeing failure even before you start
Atychiphobia makes you believe that you won’t succeed. This feeling discourages you as you will always see yourself failing even before you start to pursue your dreams or goals in life.
4. You’re often afraid of what people will say
Caring more about what other people will say about you if you fail to make it hinders you from pursuing your goals. This feeling makes you think that everyone is looking up to you. So, the best way to avoid embarrassing yourself is to stay where you are.
5. You’re often unhappy with yourself
Worries can stop you from reaching your goals in life. It makes you uncomfortable. And when you have this type of mood or feeling, you will never feel happy to do anything.
8 Tips for overcoming the fear of failure
1. Understand what failure is
You will keep being scared of failing until you change your perception or understanding of failure. Failure isn’t a bad thing. In fact, the best way to ensure a lasting success is to experience failure, first. It gives you the experience you need in order to do better.
2. Prepare yourself for success
The best way to conquer the fear of failure is to prepare yourself for success. People don’t succeed by mistake or chance. Rather, they become successful by preparing themselves with the relevant knowledge and materials they need. So, instead of being afraid of not reaching your targets or that of your family, look for a way to make those dreams come through.
For instance, if you are dismayed or worried about failing your exams, or not succeeding in your business, gather the necessary information or piece of advice that will help you to perform better. Back these ideas with hard work by coming out of your comfort zone.
3. Develop confidence in yourself
Self-confidence boosts your courage to pursue your goals. Instead of seeing yourself as a failure, or someone who is not good enough to do something, try to improve your self-esteem with some affirmations like; ‘I can make it’ ‘I’m qualified to do this ‘I will never disappoint myself or my family’ etc.
4. Learn to relax your mind
Too many negative thoughts can instil fear of failure in you. Instead of thinking about the people that couldn’t do it in the past, think about the people that have also done it. This will make you courageous enough to work towards your goals or targets.
5. Get motivation from friends
Speak to friends about your fear. They will be in the right position to advise you or give you some inspiration on how to complete this task.
6. Confront your fear
You will keep living with atychiphobia if you don’t take a bold step and confront your fear. Make up your mind to pursue those goals even if you are not going to succeed in them.
7. Forget about what people will say about you
It is necessary you develop an ‘I don’t care attitude. People will surely say something about you. Either negative or positive. But is left for you to decide whether to listen to those side talks or not.
8. Make your goals easier for you to achieve
If having bigger dreams makes you afraid, break your projects into smaller parts. This ensures that your goals are easier to achieve than to set big impossible goals.
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