"Fear has no place in the pursuit of your passion"
When it comes to our passions, we can’t let fear hold us back. We have to push ourselves forward and chase after what we want, no matter how scared we might be. Every big accomplishment in life is the result of taking a risk, and often times, our biggest fears will be realized. But that’s ok – if you don’t try, you’ll never know what could have been.
Many people are afraid to make a change, especially if it means stepping up to the “big kids’ table.” Don’t be one of those people. There should be no room for fear in the pursuit of your passion. So go out there and chase after what you want.
Fears That Hinder People's Career Progression
- Fear of Failure – This is a pervasive and often crippling fear. After all, we are told from a young age that failure is wrong, something to be avoided at all costs. But in the world of work and career progression, failure can be seen as an opportunity for growth. If you fail at something, it means that you tried something new – and if it didn’t work out, maybe the next time will be better.
- Fear of Rejection – This might not seem like a career-related fear, but it can seriously hold people back from taking important steps in their professional lives. Being afraid of rejection can mean never asking for a promotion or taking the risk of pitching an idea. Fear of rejection can also mean that you never take the risk of leaving a toxic work situation or even ending a relationship with a colleague or manager.
- Fear of Taking Risks – Whether changing careers, starting your own business, or taking on a new project, taking risks is often necessary to advance your career. But just like failure and rejection, many people are afraid to make these moves because they don’t want to put themselves out there and potentially “fail.” However, you may miss great opportunities if you never risk doing something different.
- Fear of Success – This might sound counterintuitive, but people are afraid to succeed in many cases. They know what success will mean, which often means increased pressure to keep up that success or even go beyond it. So instead of reaching higher heights, they make excuses and procrastinate rather than risk failure.
- Fear of the Unknown – The unknown is always scary, and in the world of work, it can be downright paralyzing. People often struggle with change, especially if they’re not sure what will happen due to that change. But the only way to get past this fear is to take that first step – after all, you might be pleasantly surprised by where life takes you.
If you’re facing any of these career fears, continue reading.
Recognize your Fear
If you can’t escape your fear, then acknowledge it. In many cases, the root of your anxiety can be traced back to negative past experiences or attitudes. Maybe in the past, you’ve been rejected or ignored when asking for a promotion or a new challenge. Or perhaps you tend to overthink things and doubt yourself excessively.
What is it that you’re afraid of? Do you feel like you’re not good enough for the job? Are you worried about making mistakes? Do you think you’ll get fired if you don’t do well?
Once you know your fear, you can begin to face it. Recognizing your fear is a decisive first step. It’s essential, to be honest about what you’re afraid of, encouraging you to overcome those fears. You can’t move forward if you don’t know which direction to go in the first place!
Navigate Your Fear
After recognizing your fear, it’s time to start navigating it. This process may mean taking some small steps at first, or it may mean diving in head-first. It all depends on what you’re comfortable with and what feels suitable for you.
If you’re not sure where to start, here are a few tips:
- Write a list of everything that worries you. By writing things out, you can focus on what’s going on in your mind! It may be challenging to see your fear written down at first, but the more you write, the easier it will be for you to move past those fears and do what needs to be done.
- Remember that everyone makes mistakes. Everyone has to deal with things they don’t know how to do, whether in their career or not. Don’t beat yourself up over not knowing everything! Just ask questions when you need help, and then move on.
- Think about the worst thing that could happen—and then think about how you would deal with it. By thinking through the worst-case scenario, you can feel more prepared for anything coming your way.
- You can also ask others for advice and help, which will give you some reassurance. Once you’ve started tackling your fears head-on, you may find that they aren’t as frightening as you’d initially thought.
The final step is to take action. This step may mean doing something as simple as sending an email or making a phone call. It may mean going to an interview or giving a presentation. It all depends on what scares you and what you must do to face your fear head-on.
When it comes time to take action, remember to breathe! Taking deep breaths will help you relax, making it easier to get through your tasks.
Remember that you are not alone! If you need some help along the way, ask for it. There’s no shame in asking for assistance when you don’t know what to do—and if you’re worried about being embarrassed, think of all the people who have faced their fears before and come out better on the other side!
It's Normal to Feel Fear
Even the world’s most famous and successful people have dealt with fear.
- Mahatma Gandhi – Gandhi was afraid of public speaking. It affected his career in the court and caused heart palpitations anytime he was in front of a large group of people.
- Rowan Atkinson – The actor who played Mr. Bean struggled greatly with his speech and frequently repeated vowel sounds to improve.
- Julia Roberts – This famous actress overcame her fear of public speaking via rehearsal and practice.
- Walt Disney – According to him, “Having a setback when you’re young might be beneficial since it teaches you valuable lessons. For one thing, it makes you aware that such a thing can happen to anybody, and once you’ve lived through the worst, you’re never quite as vulnerable afterward.”
- Michael Jordan – “In my professional career, I have failed to make more than 9,000 attempts. So far, I’ve lost nearly 300 games. I’ve had 26 chances to make the game-winning shot and failed each time. I have been a miserable failure throughout my entire life. And that is why I succeed.”
Regardless of your fear, it’s important to remember that everyone deals with it at some point in their lives. Keep moving forward and face those fears head-on rather than letting them hold you back.
Ask Yourself: What Would Your Career Be Like if You Weren't Afraid?
What opportunities would you have missed out on? Don’t let your career fears keep you from achieving everything you want. With the right mindset and attitude, you can overcome your fears and succeed in any aspect of your life. So take a deep breath, embrace your fears, and start moving forward today!
In conclusion, to overcome your career fears, it is important to recognize what they are, navigate them effectively by facing them head-on, take small steps when necessary, and take action once you are ready.
With the right mindset and determination, you can achieve anything you want!