How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE


How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE


Hello, and welcome to today’s post.


Today we’re going to be talking about the fear of failure and how to overcome that fear of failure, and what it’s costing you right now to not fully understand this topic.

How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

And how it could be holding you back for what you could be doing right now.


So stay tuned.

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We have grown as a society to think failure is a bad thing.

And that has started since we were young in school, and kids are still taught that failure is a bad thing.

For example, when you fail a test, what does that mean?

Automatically you think, well, they didn’t study, they didn’t do enough work, they did a bad job, they did something wrong.

Failure means something wrong OR it means you’re stupid, OR you’re not smart enough to pass the test.

Either you’re lazy OR you’re stupid, OR this is kinda how we’ve been conditioned growing up that failure is bad.

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What if instead failure was just a part of the process, and it was completely normal and it was necessary?


Let’s say that instead of when the kid comes home and he’s failed the test, ’cause it’s also embarrassing.

Like the kid doesn’t want to come home and say, “I failed, mom.”

They want to hide it.

They probably don’t want to show their mom.

And if they do, a lot of the times mom’s going to be like, “Put that away. I don’t want to see that. Why did you fail? What’s wrong with you?”

What if instead of that, it was like, “Okay, let’s find out exactly why you failed.”

Let’s go back and look at each question.

Let’s see what you didn’t understand, and let’s see what happened.

Let’s evaluate and just very neutrally just see why did you fail?

It’s neither a good nor a bad thing.


It’s just expected that you might fail and that’s okay.


And honestly, if the test was really hard, then the chances are that you’re going to fail more than if the test was really easy.

We don’t want everything to always be super easy where we just pass all the time and get straight A’s and get a breeze through no problem.

We think we want that, but that allows us for no growth.

It requires really nothing of us.

In life, when we leave school, we want to be able to fail successfully and then come back and look at why we failed so that then we can go back and do it again and understand why we failed.
How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

For me, I went through this process when I took my motorcycle license test and I failed the first time I took it.


And I remember thinking to myself, “Okay, I’m not going to get discouraged by this.”

He gave me some very specific things that I did wrong.

He told me why I failed.

And so I thought to myself, “It’ll be easy. I’ll just go back and do it again, do what he said, and then I’ll pass.”

And that’s exactly how it worked.

For me, it was two tries.

It could have been three or four tries.

It doesn’t matter.

It doesn’t say anything about me.

It just means that I needed to go through those steps to get my motorcycle license.
How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

For me, for example, the specific things that he said to me were that I was not confident on the bike.


I was going too slowly.

I was being too cautious.

And when I got on the highway, I was still going too slowly.

Basically it was going too slowly, that would be easy for me to fix.

And secondly, I wasn’t showing confidence.

Those two things kinda went together.

When I went back the next time, I knew what I needed to do and I passed.

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A simple example of how failure is not a bad thing, and it just showed me that I wasn’t ready.


Like I don’t want to be going on the road and being the super careful and super cautious driver and going too slowly, ’cause that’s dangerous in its own way.

When I went back and I learned how to apply the feedback that I was given, it was no problem and I was able to pass.

For most challenges, when they’re bigger, we’re going to need to fail a whole bunch of times.


The key is to learn from the failures.


I work with a lot of clients and there are two problems normally happening, one of two problems.

The first one is they’re either doing the work so they’re going on the interviews, but they’re not really understanding why they’re failing the interviews.

And they’re not really getting really curious about why they’re not closing them.

They’re just saying, “Well, I keep going and it’s not working, and I don’t know why,” but this attitude is a symptom of them not getting curious enough and just doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result.

That’s going to require some evaluating, some introspection, some looking at who your being, what are you thinking?

What are you feeling?

How are you showing up to those interviews where you haven’t achieved your goal yet?

And then the second problem, the other one that normally comes up is that they’re not going on interviews because they are afraid they are going to fail it.

They don’t even give themselves a chance to actually fail it.

They’re failing ahead of time is what I call that.


The solution to both of these problems is taking the action, failing, and then doing a really good evaluation of why you failed.


And that’s the key point that people don’t do.

And evaluating is art.

You really need to get curious about what it is that you’re thinking and what it is that you’re feeling before, during, and after these interviews that are causing you to show up the way you’re showing up and get the result that you’re getting.

You can’t do that unless you actually go on them.

And you can’t evaluate unless you actually get really curious and use each failure to fuel you instead of disappointing you.

Because I had the option to get really disappointed about failing my motorcycle’s license test.

I could have chosen to think, “Well, I guess I just wasn’t meant to ride a motorbike. I guess that’s it.”

And I could’ve given up ’cause it was a big effort.

I failed, I had to go back and then I had to wait a while I think, and then I had to call them again, and I had to set it up again.

Then I had to get someone to take me. I had to, it was a big effort. I had to go back and do that again.

And of course, nobody wants to do that again because it really wasn’t fun to fail the first time.

But this is a great quote from James Clear.

And he sums it up perfectly. He says, “Success is the ability to walk from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”

And when we know this, when we know that failure is just a part of the process, we can just embrace it as it’s going to happen and that is okay.

It’s nothing to be afraid of. It’s not a problem. It’s just part of the process.


An example with one of my clients was going for interviews and he kept going and going and going for interviews, and he kept failing the interviews.


He came back, we did a really good evaluation and he felt like he was moving forward.

When you do this process, when you go to an interview, you evaluate, you go to another interview, you evaluate, and you do this over and over, there’s no way you’re in the exact same place you were when you did your first interview.

Your brain has changed.

Your brain has evolved even if you don’t have your result yet.

There’s no way you’re in the same place if you’re evaluating and you’re getting curious and conscious about who you are being when you’re going back.

Back to my client.

He was walking literally from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.

And his brain started telling him there was something wrong with that.

He came to me and he’s like, “I feel weird about it. He’s like, I feel like I’m cheating because I’m not even disappointed anymore.”

He’s like, “I’m not even disappointed.”

He’s like, “I feel like I should be disappointed.”

The thing I told my client was that the disappointment didn’t serve him.

It wasn’t serving him in the slightest.

He would fall into some disappointment, he would be unhappy for a little bit, and then he would go back out.

But the faster he could just be like, okay, that one didn’t work.


Let’s evaluate, let’s figure out what was happening there, and let’s go back and do it again.


There are great aha moments coming up. There’s progress being had. And you feel like you’re actually taking these steps forward.

And even though you haven’t gotten your result yet, even though you failed, that is what failing forward is.

And you might’ve heard that before.

It’s very popular in the startup culture, in Agile, like they talk about fail fast, fail forward, break things.

That is the fastest way to success, and it is the way that you get to what you want in the end.

Failure is not to be avoided.

You’re not supposed to be afraid of it, but it’s normal that you are because that’s how we were taught since we were kids is failure is bad.

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There are two ways to learn.


First of all, is learning by studying, by researching, by reading, by consuming information.

This is like watching videos OR reading a book, doing a worksheet, listening to something like a podcast.

It’s going to be any kind of intake that you do.

Reading a textbook, so this is big with my student clients. Very, very preparation oriented.

That’s the first way to learn. And that is what prepares you to a certain extent.

You can definitely get prepared for an interview by deciding what stories you’re going to talk about, mapping them out, kind of bringing them to the front of your mind, talking about them, and practicing them.

You can definitely prepare for an interview that way and there are use and value in that method of preparing.

The problem that I see is that students will use this or my clients who are really good students.

Some of them have PhDs and master’s degrees, who are really good students will use this as a way to fail ahead of time and postpone actually going to interviews.

If this is you if you have a really good student mindset and you got your degree and you’re very, very good at being a student, this might be something that gets in your way ’cause I’ve seen it happen so many times.

You’re going to want to go to a cave and prepare.

You’re going to want to say, I need to review my stories again. I need to perfect them. I need to learn more about how to tell stories.

I need to prepare every single answer to every single question that I could possibly ever get.

You’re going to go down a rabbit hole of wanting to get ready.

You’re going to be like, “I need to prepare a project so I can talk about it. I’m going to need to create a website.”

You’re going to have all these things you’re going to want to do that don’t actually involve going to an interview.

That is going to hold you back because the second part of the learning can only happen in hindsight.


What I mean by that is the second part of the learning that you need to do for this process is only going to possible when you put yourself in the situation where you need to do it, and you might not know the answer.


Because only then will you be able to collect the data that you really need in order to move forward to the next one more successfully.

If we imagine that your dream job is here, okay?

And there’s a whole bunch of things that have to happen before you get to your dream job.

Then you are basically sitting here avoiding all those things that have to happen.

You’re avoiding the interviews you have to go on.

You’re avoiding the conversations that you need to have.

And you’re telling yourself it’s because I’m not ready yet. I’m not prepared enough.

The thing is though, you will never be prepared enough because over-preparing has a diminishing return.

It gets to the point where you could consume literally an ocean of information, but still not be able to interview successfully because you haven’t put yourself in that situation enough times to actually understand what you need to think and feel to be successful and show up in the way that you’re aligned with the role and you’re going to get hired.

And that growth is nothing that can be avoided.

It can never be avoided.

If you are avoiding it, you need to be really honest with yourself and say, “Okay, I’ve prepared enough. I need to go to an interview.”
How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

There’s no other way to learn what you need to learn.

There’s no other way to grow in the way you need to grow.

And that is called the learning in hindsight.

There’s the learning ahead of time, and then there’s the learning in hindsight.

And if you’re a student, chances are you’ve done all the learning ahead of time that you could do and it’s now time to get out there and interview.

And yes, you’re going to fail.

That’s my news for you.

It’s also my gift because when you fail, that’s a win.

Because like I said, a lot of people don’t even get out there to fail.

They don’t even give themselves the chance. If that’s you, my friend, be really honest with yourself and don’t avoid your growth any longer, because ultimately you’re just postponing your dream job.

You know you’re going to have to do it. Get out there and do it.

A lot of student’s clients of mine will say, “Yeah, but if I do it and I blow it, then that’s it.”

They’re very afraid of blowing this one opportunity that they might get.

Maybe they’ve already blown one. And I’m going to say, yeah, that’s okay. Maybe you go and get some other opportunities that you’re not so pressured like you’re not feeling so much pressure about blowing.

But the point is that you get yourself into a situation where you can actually practice what needs to happen in your brain, how you’re feeling.

You need to get yourself into a situation that is going to be uncomfortable for you first in order to keep going back and getting stronger, making that progress so that you can finally get to your dream job interview and know what it is that needs to happen because you’ve had that experience.

That’s the main thing.
How To Overcome The FEAR OF FAILURE

I did a whole podcast episode on this.


It’s called Student Mindset Versus Career Successful Professional Mindset.

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And remember, the current system isn’t perfect, but you can outsmart it. I’m here to prove to you that you do have what it takes.


I’ll see you next time and I can’t wait!


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– XO Natalie