You’re stuck. Frozen. Can’t seem to move forward. What’s stopping you? Is it because you’re afraid you might fail? Here are some ways to blast through the blockage and get on with it.

  1. You have heard the expression, “Anything worth doing is worth doing well.” Here’s your new motto: “Anything worth doing is worth being willing to do badly.” If something is important to you then you have got to be willing to try it, knowing that you may flop, because sometimes you will.
  2. Consider the words of Saint Francis of Assisi: “Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” Action breeds more action. Soon you are rolling right along.
  3. Instead of trying to “think” your way out of a “stuck” situation, try “acting” your way out. Fear of failure feeds on over-analysis, excessive “What if?” thinking, and second-guessing. Sometimes you just need to get into action to overcome the inertia and start the momentum.
  4. Rethink your concern about what other people think of you. Most people fear “failing” because they are afraid of what other people will think. Realize that people who truly care about you, love you for WHO YOU ARE, not WHAT YOU DO. After all, isn’t that how you feel about them?
  5. Accept that failure is a natural part of the process of learning anything. “You do stuff. Some works, some doesn’t. You do more of what works.” This is the simple formula for learning – and for success. If you aren’t willing to make mistakes or “fail,” then you basically aren’t willing to learn and grow.
  6. Insulate yourself from the consequences of your failures. You’re headed to Las Vegas for a gambling trip. You say to yourself, “I am going to set aside $200 for gambling money and when it runs out I will quit.” By putting limits on what you are willing to bet, you are insulating yourself from unrecoverable failure. When you take on new endeavors, decide how much to “bet” financially, emotionally, and time wise. Know up front what you can afford to lose. Set limits.
  7. Try substituting the concept of “temporary defeat” or “temporary setback” for the concept of failure. A common cause of failure is the habit of quitting when overtaken by temporary defeat. Napoleon Hill says, “Failure is a trickster with a keen sense of irony and cunning. It takes great delight in tripping one when success is almost within reach.” Simple persistence will often be just what it takes to get you across the finish line to success.
  8. Failure isn’t personal - it just feels that way. Realize that many times failure is not personal, it just happens. For example, your company is downsizing, you are laid off and have a hard time finding a job in a tough economy. Does that mean you are incompetent, unskilled, or a bad employee? No! It’s not personal, it’s just business.
  9. Watch your language. The words we use to describe what we do and what happens to us carry huge implications for how we perceive ourselves and our actions. For example, feel the difference in the following statements: “It didn’t work out.” , “I didn’t get the result I wanted.” , “I failed” (or “I am a failure”).

The first two statements are neutral statements of events. The last statement is personal failure. SO WHAT if you fail! Just keep going forward and the domino effect will happen.

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