“You can’t build a reputation on what you intend to do.” –Liz Smith
I love this quote. So often we get so caught up in what we want to do that we forget to just go out and do it. It’s far easier to think about doing something great than to actually get up and try to do it (and possibly fail).
No one wants to do something wrong or make mistakes. Even if it’s a necessary evil in life, it doesn’t feel great. The fact still remains that most people will do everything they can to avoid feeling pain or embarrassment.
So how do you overcome the fear factor and chug along anyway? Here are my tips for pushing through the wall of fear.
1. Realize what you’re feeling is completely normal.
The more amazing, incredible or potential-filled your idea is, the more resistance you’re going to feel about moving forward. In fact, the closer you get to realizing your idea, the harder your lizard brain is going to try to stop you. Everyone goes through this. What separates the successful from the dreamers is the courage to push past your internal naysaying.
2. Get clear about exactly what you’re doing.
Sometimes a lack of preparation can cloud judgement and create extra roadblocks that don’t need to be there. A confused mind stops in its tracks. It doesn’t want to take any steps forward because it doesn’t know which way is forward. With a proper road map, it’s much easier to reach your destination. If you’ve found yourself hesitating for long periods before taking any action, more than likely you’re not clear as to what specific action to take. Take some time and really put together a plan of attack for what you’re trying to do. Even if it’s the wrong thing to do at first, some action is better than no action.
3. Think positively about your outcome as often as you can.
Consider this step a way to retrain the negative tape running through your head. Everything you want to achieve or have is possible. It’s just a matter of finding a way to make it happen. Sit down and really think about how this project or endeavor will benefit you. What do you hope to achieve from it? As often as you can, consciously think about it. Imagine how it will feel and what it will be like when you’ve reached your goal or hit your target. Keep that thought in your mind as often as possible.
4. Have an accountability buddy.
It’s funny how we’re more concerned with letting someone else down than we are ourselves. When it comes to motivation, however, this is a great trait to exploit. Let someone in on what you’re doing and keep checking in with them. If you have a group or following, let them know your goals and keep them updated with your progress. You’re more likely to follow through with something when you’re being held accountable for it.
5. Be realistic.
While every goal is attainable, you might not get the results in exactly the fashion or time frame you were looking for. Keep an open mind about when and how you’ll attain your goal. Sometimes, what seemed like a roadblock ends up being blessing in disguise. If you’ve planned ahead for these possible interruptions, they’ll feel less like detours and more like small speed bumps.
It takes a lot of courage to put yourself out there and create something. However, it always pays off in the end, even if they only payment is wisdom gained through the failure. I’ve shared my own personal habits for pushing through the wall of fear. How do you push through yours?