How to overcome the fear of failure when starting a Business

Its an age-old tale, how many people missed out on the opportunity of a life-time because they feared they would fail, which means its not really a problem we have solved yet. Can we truly start a business without the fear of failure?

Fear is a natural emotional response to things we don’t know. Its been programmed into us from an early age to keep us safe and protected, like those moments when you parents would tell you don’t poke your finger inside an electric socket because they didn’t want you to get electrocuted, that fear incited in you kept you safe. However it is this very same fear that holds countless entrepreneurs from really achieving remarkable success. So what about all those super successful moguls out there? What are they doing that the rest aren’t? It’s really simple, they have found a way to either work with their fear until they conquer it.

But how can you tackle this as an aspiring entrepreneur? Simply by changing your approach and attitude. Of-course no-one is saying that you won’t fail, and that’s precisely where you need to place your focus. Addressing the fear is the trick here. Its common human reaction to be wary of the likelihood that you may fail, however the most common response to this sort of fear is to run-away from it. How this presents itself in an entrepreneur’s day to day life is in-action, procrastination and anxiety. By addressing the fear, looking it face on and acknowledging what you are afraid, you will be better able to prepare for such an outcome. Remember knowledge is power here and the more aware you are of the fear the more knowledgeable you are about it and better equipped you can be to ensure that you can tackle that likely outcome.  This is when the fear becomes the opportunity to really propel you and your business.

To illustrate how you can apply this practically, we picked out the 3 most common fears that entrepreneurs have and how you can overcome these as you begin your journey to entrepreneurship;

What is my idea isn’t viable in the market place? 

This is a perfectly valid fear to have! After all if you don’t have a viable idea, you aren’t going to make money. Simple. So before you get consumed in the fear of it, face it head on. What part of your idea are you not confident in? How much do you really know about the market that makes you FEEL like it isn’t a viable idea. What evidence has presented itself to you that validates that it isn’t going to work? These are critical questions you have to ask yourself in order to ensure you don’t consumed in the emotion. In seeking to answer these questions you will better know your own product and the market you want to operate in. Even the giant moguls of business go through exactly the same fears that you do, but the way in which they overcome this is through rigorous research and questioning of their idea and their market, until such a point where they feel confident in executing, and this is the same for you

There is so much to learn, its all very over-whelming and I am only one person

This is where planning and pragmatism are key. Every entrepreneur starts off alone, so again you aren’t alone. Remember every birthday party, every school project and home-move all succeeded with solid planning, and the same applies here. Create a business plan that makes sense to you. A good business plan will cover your businesses mission and objectives, it will outline the strategies that are going to help you achieve the objectives and the sales, marketing and financials you will need to action to deliver on your strategies. It will help you to clarify your business idea, spot potential problems, set out goals and measure progress. It shows you have a clear vision of where you want to be and what you want to achieve .i.e. it incorporates all the elements that you would want to achieve and identify the gaps in your plan. These can be things you don’t know or aren’t certain of, they set about getting those answers. If you have researched your market and idea well then writing your plan will be that much easier.

What is so special about me and my business why would anyone want to pay attention?

Self promotion is one of the most daunting tasks an entrepreneur faces. Even the most experience business people still feel nervous when they have to talk about their brand and promote their business. So the best way to over-come this, is to start talking about and practising pitching your business to others. Start with friends and family, people you feel comfortable and safe with but equally you don’t want cheer-leaders! You want people who can give you constructive feedback and help you shape what will become your elevator pitch. The more you do this the more confidence you will build, not only in speaking to others but also about your business and idea, which means your passion and determination will always shine through.

Above all else confidence here is key. The more confident you feel about what you are doing the less fear you will feel, and the easiest way to get to that place is by working on the above so that you can start to take the necessary steps to build your business legacy.

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