Many people have big plans for their lives — either personally or professionally. But unfortunately, some people never achieve their dreams because they allow fear to stand in the way of their success.
Fear is a normal emotion. But while some people can shake off fear and move forward with their lives, others become paralyzed and miss out on opportunities.
If you’re tired of fear controlling your life, here are some ways to overcome your fears and achieve success.
1. Identify the Cause of Fear
To overcome fear and achieve success, you have to know exactly what you’re afraid of. Fear of success and failure are common problems, but there’s usually an underlying reason. For example, do you fear success because you prefer simplicity and you don’t want to complicate your life? Or maybe you fear success because you know others will expect more out of you.
2. Ask Yourself, What's the Worst That Can Happen?
Fear can stop you from achieving your goals — maybe because you fear the unknown or failure. But oftentimes, our biggest fears never happen. So rather than let fear take over your life, ask yourself: what’s the worst that can happen? Sure, you might fail or not live up to your own expectations, but this isn’t the end of the world, nor does it mean you can’t try again and have the best comeback ever.
Some people don’t like to imagine the worst-case scenario. However, this can give the situation perspective, and you might see that the worst possible scenario isn’t that bad at all. For added confidence, you can also think of possible solutions, just in case the worst happens. This way, you’re prepared and able to handle any curveballs life throws your way.
3. Change Your Mindset
Fear isn’t going to go away on its own. You need to realize the power of fear. It can take away your self-confidence. And when you’re paralyzed, you feel powerless to change your life.
Push negative thoughts out of your mind, and remember that it’s okay to constantly reassure yourself. Believe that you can be successful, and tell yourself everything’s going to be fine. Even if things don’t go smoothly, getting rid of fear gives you the mental strength to deal with any obstacles. Plus, it’s easier to solve problems when you have a clear head.
4. Remember That Everyone's Afraid
Rather than fear success, failure, or anything else for that matter, remember that everyone experiences fear at some point. You’re not alone. And the same way others have conquered their fears and became successful, you can too.
Speak to those you admire and ask about their fears. You may learn that they’ve been in your shoes many times. What helped them overcome their fears and conquer success? Take their advice and guidance.
5. Stop Running and Face Your Fears
Running away from your fears isn’t going to solve the problem, it can add to your frustrations and anxiety. Muster up the strength to face your fears, and you may realize the situation isn’t as scary as you thought.
You don’t have to jump directly into a fearful situation, ease into it or take baby steps. For example, maybe the fear of public speaking or leadership holds you back from getting promoted at work. The idea of speaking to a group of 50 or more people might send you into a state of panic. But you might be able to overcome this fear and build confidence if you start with a smaller group.
Ask your employer to let you take the lead in a departmental or team meeting, which might only be 10 people. As you become more comfortable, you might speak to a group of 20 people, and then 50 people. Before you know it, you’ve conquered your fear of public speaking, which can open the door to new opportunities.
See also: How to Handle the Fear of Failure
Fear can take away your power. Rather than let fear keep you in the background, use these techniques to break free and move in the direction you want to go.