Fear is the worst thing that can happen to a creative entrepreneur. Fear will stop you before you even have a chance to start. I have struggled with the fear of launching my blog for YEARS. I looked at other bloggers and their success with such admiration. I wanted that too.
I always told myself that I was going to launch my blog, however, I always had an excuse. I wasn’t niche enough, I didn’t have time, there were already so many amazing bloggers there was no way I could compete. I would start a little bit here and there, make a logo, get a website up but get stuck what on my branding should be or writing a little but never actually pressing that publish button. I was afraid of being judged by the entire world and I was afraid of failing.
Then recently, I was put on an unpaid medical leave at work because of carpal tunnel and suddenly, I had all the time in the world to focus on getting my blog up. Yet, a month passed and I still had nothing up but now I had some real fears to face. After a month of no pay at all, how would I pay my rent? My car? Buy food? It the midst of worrying about real fears I had a small thought in the back of mind if I had launched my blog years ago when I wanted would I still be in the situation? Maybe my blog would be making just enough money that I wouldn’t have to worry about this. Right then and there I told myself I was going to launch my blog and I couldn’t be happier that I did.
How can you get over your fear and begin working towards your dream?
Use your fear as motivation – turn your fear of failure into the fear of regret. Do you want to be 10 years from now wondering where you would be if you just had started your business or blog? I didn’t. So I need to face my fears. One my biggest fears was the failure so I decided that is what I needed to deal with the most. So, I did a little exercise, writing down exactly what I feared.
Write out what will happen if you do fail:
- I would have to continue to work my day job
- I would have to tell my friends and family that I failed
- I would never achieve my dream of being a blogger and writer
Writing out your fears can take the fear out of them. After writing out my fears I wanted to find out what would be the worst thing that could happen if that fear turned into reality. With my fear of telling my loved ones I failed, why would I be afraid to tell my family and friends that my blog wasn’t successful? Would they shun me? No. Would they make me feel like a horrible human being? No. They would be proud that I tried, and would encourage me to try again.
Then I made another list: What happens if I succeed?
- I get to achieve my dream of blogging for a living.
- I get to use my passions and knowledge to help other women achieve their dreams.
- I become part of a wonderful community of like-minded and driven women.
- I meet new and amazing people.
Now looking at it side by side, my success list looks freaking amazing and my fear list kind of looks a bit silly. Seeing what could happen with my success list motivated me even more to get my blog launched.
Some common fears and how to overcome them:
Your idea isn’t good enough or someone out there is already doing it
Yes, there are probably a ton of people who are doing the same thing you are but that doesn’t mean you can’t. Does a chef give up his dream of owning a restaurant because there happens to be a restaurant in town already? I would hope not. You need to remember the most important thing you bring to your business is you. You are the most important part of your business, no else can do what you do because you are like no one else.
You aren’t a business person or a great writer
You don’t have to have a degree in business or be an award-winning author. If you have an excellent product or a great idea then you can learn everything else. Let be real it’s 2017, everything you need to know is at the tips of your fingers, and Google is your best friend. Let’s say you make some amazing crochet baby hats but you have no idea how to market, guess what you already know the hard part, your product. Do you need to know how to work Twitter? Google “twitter help”. In a couple hours of research, you be a twitter pro, or least know enough to be able to find your target market.
Fear of asking for money
Being a small biz owner or blogger, you must ask for sales. That’s a fact, that’s how you are going to make your money and grow your business. But asking for sales doesn’t have to be slimy or spammy. Find your target audience, stay professional, and if you have an excellent product people want to buy it.
Fear of what people will say
No one wants to be rejected or bullied. Unfortunately, negative comments will happen. That’s okay take a moment to reflect on it and use them to learn how you can make your business better. Just remember you can’t please everyone. However, there is a difference between a negative comment and just straight up trolls. And if you do happen to get an occasional troll, delete the comment, block the offender and move on from it. Don’t give them a second thought because they don’t deserve it.
It helps to make new business and bloggers friends that can relate to what you are going through. Take smalls steps, like joining some Facebook Groups in your niche and introduce yourself. Find blogs you enjoy and comment on them, join Twitter chats. Involving yourself in the community will eliminate the fear of being the newbie on the block and will you start to build your own little community.
Don’t overwhelm yourself by over researching.
You have a great idea or product, you are jazzed up to begin, you sit down to do some research on how to start and the next thing you know the day has passed and you have nothing done. Except now you are stuck in over-information and feel like there is no way you can do it. This happened to me a lot, I would get so overwhelmed that I would be stuck at the beginning. There was no way I could write blogs, make a logo, brand myself, build a whole website, flawless run social media on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram, how would I market, what about SEO, and product making. TOO MUCH. And yes, it is a lot, but take it one step at a time. First, I told myself I wouldn’t even touch a website or any branding until I wrote at least 3 blog posts then I would move onto making a logo, then I would work on my website. I would not move onto my step 2 until I finish step 1 and I would absolutely not research anything other than the step I was on.
Some final reminders:
Everyone must start from zero. Don’t compare your step 1 with someone’s step 10.
Your personality is your business.
Use your fear as motivation – turn your fear of failure into the fear of regret.Use your fear as motivation – turn your fear of failure into the fear of regret. Click To Tweet
For me regret far outweighs the fear of failing. If I was this regretful about not starting a blog after four years how would I feel after 10 or 20? Even if this blog does fail I know I tried and that will feel so much better than the regret of never trying.