Recently, I wrote a post about being overwhelmed and the things you could do to help you in times of extreme stress. This post is about something a little different, though it does fit under the umbrella of the stress of having many things that you have/want to do.
This post is about the fear of failure, and how to deal with it.
We all have things we want to do in life—big or small. I, for example, have been trying to learn the guitar for many years (with great difficulty). I always practice for a little while, stop, and then try and pick it up again. It never works out, and I still haven’t gotten any better—It’s a whole big thing!
The worst is starting a new task on my list of many “goals”. I always spend time researching and planning out exactly what I need to do and end up not doing any of it. I waste time, energy and resources for no good reason.
I really struggle to see things through—this is a huge problem for me. And I know this is a problem for a lot of people. The reason Netflix (and actual chill) takes a front seat to starting a project or task is because of fear.
There are a million things I want to do and achieve in life, but I’m scared I’m not good enough to do them. And in this day and age, it is easy to believe that other people have achieved the things you want because they are just much better than you. This kind of thinking demotivates you even more, and this lack of confidence and motivation stops you from starting that project you really want to do.
It’s hard to find the enthusiasm and energy to start something new and exciting, especially if it’s something that is easy to fail at—starting a business, creating a website, getting a record deal. But as I am getting older, I am discovering that being happy and trying new things (even if I suck at them) is way more important than being successful.
Sometimes you just really have to say, “who the hell cares?”and get on with it. So what if you fail? At least you tried. You won’t spend the rest of your days wondering “what if…”
If we spent half the time that we do worrying about the project on actually doing the project, we wouldn’t fail at all. All our energy would be focused on doing the best job and having the most fun, and you can’t really fail at that.
Like the great Liz Gilbert says, you have to follow your curiosity. If something interests you, go out and try it. Are you interested in cooking? Learn to make a new dish every week. Do you want to learn a new language? Pick up an audiobook and get going. Do you want to create a business? Make an Etsy account and create something! It’s simply just about getting started.
Once you have an idea, take a few small steps to get started, and work from there. If you realise learning an instrument isn’t for you, then stop. If you decide that you would rather eat food than make it, fair enough. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to.
The first (and pretty much only) step to doing anything is trying. My new mentality is: try new things and have fun doing them. What’s the point doing something if it’s boring and makes you miserable? We’re adults. We already do enough boring and miserable stuff!
Life is too short to worry so much. Let’s all try and take some of the pressure off ourselves.