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How to overcome Fear of failure: 

A guide for Women Changemakers, Creatives and Yoga Teachers

As a woman changemaker, creative, or yoga teacher, it’s common to experience the fear of failure. This fear can be paralyzing and prevent you from taking risks or pursuing your dreams. But, it doesn’t have to be this way. In this article, you’ll learn what fear of failure is, how it can show up in your life, and effective tips to help you overcome fear to take inspired action in your life.

Fear of failure can cause procrastination

What is Fear of Failure? What are the signs?

Fear of failure is the feeling of apprehension or anxiety that arises when a person thinks about or is faced with the possibility of failing. It’s a common phenomenon, and almost everyone has experienced it at some point in their life. However, it can be particularly prevalent for women entrepreneurs, creatives, and yoga teachers, who are often expected to perform at a high level while breaking barriers in their respective industries. At it’s most intense level, it is call Atychiphobia, a kind of anxiety disorder.

Fear of failure can show up as:

  • Anxiety or feelings of unsettledness
  • Procrastination, or avoidance of tasks (you’re afraid to fail at)
  • Denial of specific situations, tasks or people
  • Fear of performing simple tasks at work or home
    Feeling angry or irritable.
  • Anxiety or feelings of unsettledness
  • Panic attacks (related to worst-case scenarios

Fear in the Creative Cycle: Water out of balance

Within the Creative Cycle, Fear of Failure is associated to the water element when out of balance, and can be exacerbated by the pressures from the Inner Critic, when the metal element is overly dominant.

When in balance instead of Fear, what you can experience instead is a deep, unshakeable trust and conviction in your purpose and passion to impact change in the world. And you so so from a place of deep connection with your intuition and Insight.  

12 Ways to Overcome Fear of Failure in your career / work

If you’re a woman entrepreneur, creative, or yoga teacher, your workplace may be your business or your studio. To overcome the fear of failure, you must first understand that it’s a natural emotion. It’s not something to be ashamed of or to hide from.

Once you acknowledge and accept your fear, you can take steps to overcome it. Here are some tips to help you overcome your fear of failure at your career:

1. Identify and acknowledge your Fear: Start by identifying what specifically you’re afraid of. Is it the fear of failing and disappointing others, or the fear of not being good enough? Once you identify your fear, you can start to work on it. A great exercise to do is writing down your fears, acknowledging them. You can then challenge them, or use a release ritual (folding them, putting them in a jar, burning them and saying ‘I release you’)

2. Create safety through a support system: Fear comes from a place of not feeling safe. You’re afraid you might not live up to your own expectations, or the expectations of others. Dissolve fear by surrounding yourself with people who believe in you and your vision. They can provide you with the emotional support you need to overcome your fear of failure.

3. Cultivate self-trust through practice: Self-trust is the essential ingredient necessary to help you take action to manifest your dreams and ideas into reality. Visualization is a powerful tool that can help you cultivate self-trust to overcome your fear of failure. Take some time to visualize yourself succeeding in your baby steps. This will help you build confidence and develop a positive mindset. If visualization doesn’t resonate with you, try other techniques like positive affirmations or mindfulness meditation, whatever helps you cultivate belief in your own capability.

4. Set clear, realistic and authentic goals based on your values: Setting clear and realistic goals can help you focus and prioritize your efforts. It can also give you a sense of direction and purpose. It’s important to have goals aligned with your values – what is important to you, rather than goals based on comparison with others. Your values are what give your life meaning and purpose. Knowing your values can help you make decisions that align with your priorities. Write your goals down and remind yourself to come back to them whenever you notice you start comparing with others.

5. Take small, imperfect action towards your goals: Action is the antidote to fear. Taking action towards your goals, even if it’s a small step, can help you build momentum and reduce your fear. If your goal or task seems big, remember to break it down into smaller steps to prevent yourself from feeling overwhelmed. Take things one step at a time.

6. Take calculated risks: Taking risks is an essential part of growth and success. However, it’s important to take calculated risks. This means weighing the potential risks and benefits before making a decision.

7. Celebrate your successes, no matter how small: Take time to celebrate your successes, no matter how small. It will help you build momentum and confidence. I have a document, a pillar of praise, where I keep all the positive feedback and successes from my career and personal life. Whenever I’m feeling down, I revisit my pillar. It keeps me encouraged and keeps me going on my path.

8. Develop a growth mindset – Learn from failure: Failure is not the opposite of success; it’s part of the process. Failure is an opportunity to learn and grow. Use your failures as a learning experience and adjust your strategy accordingly.

9. Focus on progress, not perfection: Perfectionism can be a trap that prevents you from taking action. Focus on making progress, even if it’s not perfect. Nobody is perfect, and that’s okay. Accepting imperfection can help you let go of the pressure to be perfect and focus on progress. Notice if your inner critic is chastising you, challenge your negative self-talk.

10. Focus on the present moment: Fear of failure usually comes from relating to past regrets or potential future ‘what-if’s. Dwelling on past failures, regrets or worrying about the future can be overwhelming. Focus on the present moment and take things one step at a time.

11. Cultivate gratitude: Gratitude is a powerful emotion that can shift your focus from what you lack to what you have. Practice gratitude by keeping a gratitude journal or reflecting on who and what you’re thankful for.

12. Seek out role models who have overcome similar challenges. It can be helpful to have role models whom you look up to, so you can feel empowered and inspired on your journey.

BONUS: Read this blog post on Emotional overwhelm and Learn how to overcome fear here.

Overcoming the fear of failure is not easy, but it’s definitely possible. As a woman changemaker, creative, or yoga teacher, you may face unique challenges, but these tips can help you overcome your fear of failure and achieve your goals.

Remember to take things one step at a time, seek support from others, and focus on progress, not perfection. With time, patience, and persistence, you can overcome your fear of failure and achieve your dreams.

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Hi! I’m Wenlin Tan, a Productivity, Accountability & Mindfulness Coach with clients across Asia, Europe and the USA. I am passionate about supporting you to overcome self-doubt, procrastination and inner critic attacks to achieve your goals and live the dream of your dreams. If you want to learn how to overcome overwhelm and achieve your goals with ease, I’m here to help.

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