Here are 3 ways to overcome fear of failure in your career

Life is scary, and change even more so. However, what scares us the most about change is the fact that we face the chance of failure. What if we don’t like the new changes, what if we cannot deal with them, and primarily what if we are not as successful after them as we are now?

As much as we fear failure, what we actually fail to realize is that failure is actually important. As Thomas Edison famously once said, “I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” If we don’t fail, how will we learn what works and what doesn’t?

Yet we are so afraid to fail that we don’t even try, thus limiting ourselves to a small sphere where we know for a fact that we won’t fail, but we won’t grow either. In that context, here are three ways to overcome your fear of failure in order to let your career grow.

Get out of your comfort zone

The first and foremost thing is to get out of your comfort zone. Try new things, because if you don’t you will never learn what works and what doesn’t. You will also never try or learn anything new. If you don’t even try, how will you ever succeed?! It is not failure that is stopping us, but rather just the fear of failure. The more you get out there, the more you beat the fear everyone, until eventually it’s not even a blimp on the radar.

So, take a new class. Change your jobs. Jump into entrepreneurship. Do whatever it is that you want to do, but don’t because of your fear of failure. Of course, you don’t have to jump in head first, unless you want to. Take baby steps instead, as long as you do take the steps out of your comfort zone and into a whole new scary yet adventurous direction.

Accept that failure is inevitable

Let’s think about Edison’s quote again. Out of 10,000 ways, only one way worked. That is a success rate of 1/10000 or 0.0001%. This means Edison (a person that smart) had a failure rate of 99.9999%. Keeping that in mind, how can one realistically imagine that we’ll success at not one but at every endeavor in our life? That is just not statistically possible. We will fail at something sooner or later; Failure is Inevitable! We will fail at some things, so that we can succeed at others. So, the sooner we accept failure, the sooner it will lose its power over us.

Learn the lessons that come with failure. Try Again.

When you do fail, don’t despair. Instead, focus on what you’ve learned instead. After all you’ve just learned of one more way to not make a light bulb (figuratively). Try to find out what worked, what didn’t work, what could have been better, and where did things go wrong. Armed with this knowledge, you’ll know what to implement and what to avoid the next time around. With this failure, you have actually taken a step closer to success, because now you know what doesn’t work; hence this thing will never impede you again. Removing the things that don’t work, you are only left with things that do; a formula for success if you will. Which means that the next time around, you are bound to get closer to success, if not succeed altogether.

If all things else fail, think of it this way: Wouldn’t you rather have fun failing at something you love, rather than succeed at something you hate or something that makes you miserable?


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