I have a friend who’s been thinking, and dreaming, and planning on launching her own business for years. Unfortunately, she hasn’t done much “doing”. She’s the kind of person who has no lack of experience or knowledge, and she’s been growing and learning in her chosen industry for years. She has had all the tools she’s needed to be successful for a very long time. So what’s been holding her back?
Recently, she made the first real steps to get her business off the ground and I couldn’t be more proud. I asked her why she thought it had taken so long for her to finally get started and she gave me the response that I was expecting, but still didn’t understand.
“I can’t believe I haven’t done it sooner. I think I was just too afraid to get started.”
It’s not only in business that this fear rears its ugly head. What about when you want to start dedicating yourself to the gym, or when you want to finally read that book you’ve been putting off? What things have been nagging at you, begging for you to accomplish them before the end of your life? What’s been holding you back from doing so? Fear of failure? What is that?
Maybe your original plan doesn’t pan out exactly how you thought it would. Is that failure? No.
Maybe you didn’t reach the specific goal you had set for yourself. Is that failure? No.
These imagined failures are arbitrary and created solely by you- don’t allow them to prevent you from moving forward when achieving your goals becomes challenging.
When I first started my business, I’m sure there are plenty of people who would have labeled me a “failure”. In my first year, I produced less than $13,000 before expenses. In 2009 (the year I first started Identity), the median household income in the United States was nearly $60,000. Ouch. Could I have thrown in the towel right then and there, living the rest of my life as a failure? Absolutely. Perhaps other people even would have.
Instead, I chose to look at each of those 13,000 dollars and feel pride for what I had accomplished. I understood that it meant I had made a real step towards my goal of owning a successful business. Not only had I made money for myself, but I had truly helped a few clients grow their own businesses along the way.
From that experience, I learned something critical to my success. When you learn to appreciate your journey towards success, you eliminate the possibility of failure. By focusing on what’s going right, you prevent the worry over things that have gone wrong to slow you down. Very few people are successful overnight, or in this case over a year. But that willingness to appreciate the journey, to love every step you take, including the highs and the lows, means that you’ll be incapable of allowing the fear of failure to hold you back. In fact, failure won’t even be an option as long as you’re alive.
This isn’t to stay that you should always stick with your original goals in the hope that someday they’ll pan out. Rather, continually learn from the successes and mistakes you make and apply that knowledge to the adaptation of your goals. Eventually, you will find success.
As someone who’s been where you are, and who continues to love being on her journey towards success, allow me to offer one more piece of advice. If you’re sitting in place at work, or in your life, fearing that things may not turn out exactly the way you want them too, know that it’s better to go and make an effort than to stay stuck in a place you’ll regret when you go on to the next life.
If you’re in need of a little extra guidance or a push, I’m always here for you. Schedule a call today at https://identitydental.com/cmps/.