ACCESS Global — Ed Talk: When Fear Creeps In

It all appears to be going well; you are progressing forward and life is grand. Then something happens. You are not sure what, but you notice indecision. Your steps are no longer deliberate; there is hesitation. Fear has invaded your space. ​

Fear is often the one factor that we forget to consider when embarking on the greatest chapters of our lives.

Recently, I conducted a workshop for an urban high school. The workshop was composed of sophomores and juniors; they are always quite inquisitive. One student in particular stood out. She asked, “How am I supposed to be excited about college when I am not excited about school? I have never been a good student and I am afraid of failing at college. I do not understand the process and I feel like I am being pushed out into a world without preparation.”

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Two days after the workshop, I decided to listen to a podcast about education from a well-respected scholar. I listened to the discussion and without hesitation fear of failure started to invade every thought. It was devastating and I was overwhelmed. I could not focus on business projects or deadlines. I was stuck and unable to move forward. Listening to this podcast caused me to doubt every positive step I had taken in the past few months. The scholar’s thoughts, feelings, ideas and experiences interrupted my entrepreneurial progress. I considered changing my future plans solely based on her comments. Her educational journey seemed rational, secure and rewarding, so perhaps I was making the wrong decision by deciding to pursue entrepreneurship and abandoning the security of a job in education.

Fear has a way of invading spaces unexpectedly and no one is immune. Life is going as planned and then boom! The “what ifs’ show up. What if my ideas fail? What if I make mistakes? What if education is truly not for me? What if in the end I am standing alone; a failure?

What I know for sure: Good enough is the enemy of excellent. You are the creator of your destiny and the designer of your life. It is up to you to decide to walk in your greatness and chase your wildest dreams. You can be a duplication of someone else or a genuine image of self. Your authentic self is waiting for you to move forward on this journey so climb over fear and continue to take the next right steps. Only you know your path. It is up to you to decide. Research your options, seek support and guidance from others and take the best course of action. Your future self will thank you.

Feel free to connect. I enjoy feedback and comments.

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