Updated: Mar 6, 2020
You want to start a business.
You have been thinking about it for a while. Daydreaming about the possibilities of this new
business. How fun it would be. The opportunity to earn extra money. The fulfillment that would come from creating something new. You want to finally pull the trigger, but…
What if you would be happier doing a different kind of business?
What if you lose money?
What if people criticize you? What if they think your idea is weird?
What if no one buys your product? What if it is a total flop?
The fears are endless.
So you do nothing. You are stuck. You don’t work on your business. You can’t stop thinking
about all your worries. You are paralyzed by fear.
When we feel fear about our businesses, we avoid taking action.
We avoid telling others about our business. They can’t judge our idea if they don’t know after all. And when we do mention it, we downplay the business. We are afraid of coming off too salesy.
We put-off making decisions. Overanalyzing and overcomplicating everything. Indulging in the confusion feels so much safer than committing to the wrong decision. And we wait until we get it absolutely perfect. If we somehow achieve perfection, that will ensure success, right?
Many businesses never grow or even start, because would-be-entrepreneurs allow fear to be
When fear comes up for us, our brains are believing that something is a threat. That there is
danger. Our brains want to keep us safe and alive. The risk of starting a new business feels like life or death to your brain. So our minds come up with excuses to not start the business,
because not starting a business feels so much safer than putting ourselves out there.
How do we conquer our fears and finally take that next step in our business? Here are five tips to finally facing your entrepreneurial fears:
1) Take action anyways. Sometimes we want to wait until all our fear is gone to move
forward with our business. However, all we need is to take the next small step forward. Fear is going to come up for us. But it is our choice how we respond. Will we allow it to
paralyze us? Or will we take action in spite of it?
2) Commit to your business. Decide that you will go for it. Commit to a time period that
you will work on this business. For example, go all in on making your photography
business happen for one year. This empowers you to be more resilient as challenges
come. When people tell you no and your ads don’t perform, you can remind yourself
that you are committed to making this work for the next year. At the end of the year,
you can reevaluate if you still want to continue pursuing this business. This prevents you
from getting jumpy at any piece of data that might indicate the business won’t work. It
allows for time to truly evaluate if the business is viable, rather than quitting early
because you are scared.
3) Make peace with the possibility of failure. There are no guarantees with starting a
business. When you accept your worst-case scenario, it can’t hold you hostage
anymore. You will let go of the need to know if your business will succeed. Once you
make peace with the possibility of failure, you will be much more likely to take action.
Many successful entrepreneurs go through a series of failures before achieving their
goal. Failure, the thing you are so terrified of, is actually what will bring you closer to the
ultimate success you want.
4) Believe in your business before you see results. Most people wait for successful results
to start believing in their business. We use each opportunity to measure if our business
will actually be successful. But what if we believed in our business before we saw
results? How much harder would you work? How much more confidently would you talk
to potential clients? Believing in your business will help propel you to confident action,
moving your business that much closer to success. And you will have so much more fun
working on it along the way.
5) Shoot for B- work. Hear me out! Sometimes we get so preoccupied with trying to make every detail perfect before launching our business. We want to start out with a perfect brand, perfect website, perfect ads, etc. These are all important things, but when you're first starting out it's most important to just start moving forward and let go of the need for an A+ in every detail. Give yourself permission to do things imperfectly. When we are satisfied with starting out at B- level work, we get so much more done, and then have room to improve from there. If you wait to make your first step until it's a perfect move, you'll never move! And hey, you will be surprised at how good your B- work actually is.
Stop wondering about the possibility of your business. Go face your fears. Get out there and get going. The only way you will truly fail is if you never try.
In the words of Franklin Roosevelt, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”