These 6 Words Helped Me Overcome My Fear of Failure


My cursor pulsed on the blank page.

I wrote sentence and then deleted every word. I stood up 6 times for coffee in 2 hours. Surprisingly, my page would still be blank when I returned.

I wanted to start a blog. I wanted to start a business. I wanted to change the world.

But all those things invite ridicule. I had a fear of being ridiculed.

So I sat safely in the corner, dumping ideas into my hard drive where they collected dust.

One day, a friend of mine told me something which changed my perspective forever. He said this:

“Nobody cares what you are doing.”

Far from being depressing, this was the most liberating thing I ever discovered.

Obscurity is not a problem. It’s an opportunity. It allows you to lay the first brick in your idea without a judging panel. Then, you might find the confidence to lay another. And then another. Safe in your shroud of being a nobody, you have full reign to take whatever type of material you like and build whatever type of legacy you want.

Eventually you will fail in front of somebody. It might hurt a little. It might hurt a lot. When the raw emotions fade, though, you’ll look around and realize something:

You are still alive.

Yesterday, I got a letter from a publisher which began “Dear Author.” It hurt. A lot.

But I am still alive.

Oh, and as a reminder:

Thought does not conquer fear. Plans do not conquer fear. Ideas do not conquer fear. Encouragement does not conquer fear. Friends do not conquer fear.

Action conquers fear.

As a matter of fact, it may be the only thing that does.