The biggest threat to your brand is not your competition. It’s not sub-par product. It’s not even poor judgement or time management skills. The biggest threat to your brand is fear.
It is better to fail ten thousand times than to be frozen in place by fear. If you try and fail, you learn. You grow. You improve. It doesn’t matter if people see you fall. You’ll only stand taller when you rise.
If you let anxiety dictate your decision to start a project or make an adjustment to your brand, you’re only stifling your progress.
We learn lessons throughout life by way of experience, not by overthinking and analyzing potential outcomes. The only guarantee we get from opting not to do something is the plague of what-ifs. And while we can look back on bad judgement and wonder about the outcome if we had made other decisions, to do so is to say that it’s better to play it safe, to live in mediocrity. Which, we all know, is not the mark of the creative, fulfilled life we hunger for as artists.
It takes effort to silence the demons that haunt you. It’s easier to think that an audience will sooner reject a new idea than to accept it.
And it’s very possible they will reject it. Who cares? It’s all the better to show you what they like for the next time you try something out. You are not defined by your mistakes. Rather, you are the sum of your experiences.
When you limit the power fear has over your decisions, you put yourself in a position to do amazing things. No one has ever achieved greatness by staying frozen in place. No one has ever told a success story that began with, “I did the same thing that I always did.”
Getting over fear of failure is something anyone can learn.
The first step is admitting what you’re afraid of. Usually, it boils down to rejection. This fear goes back to the fundamental human need to be accepted and loved by others.
Now that we’ve defined it, we can transcend it.
Just because we have the idea that something bad will happen doesn’t mean it will. Failure and rejection is not the truth when it only exists in our heads. It’s always better to take the leap and do something rather than to be petrified and treading space, doing nothing. If the results of our actions aren’t beneficial to our brand, we can dig ourselves out later. Whether we succeed or fail, it leads to a new direction.
After taking action, reflect on the positives and negatives of the outcome. This helps to gauge where to go moving forward. Viewing our actions constructively also takes the power away from what went wrong, transforming failures into facts. Mistakes won’t seem as daunting, and on the flip side, successes are less likely to go to our heads. We can keep moving forward at a steady pace, for better or for worse.
Learning to deal with and combat fear is all about perspective. We tend to put too much emphasis on possible negative outcomes, rather than weighing all potential futures. There’s a million possible things that could happen that determine whether we’re enjoying the ride or picking ourselves up from the floor. We have to realize that we aren’t psychics, and it’s impossible to tell what will happen next.
Ultimately, it’s never a bad idea to try something new, hope for the best and let the cards fall where they may.