I keep hearing about this Law of Feedback which states: “there is no failure, there is only feedback.”

By this way of thinking, mistakes are not terrible. They’re not personal. Mistakes just provide you with neutral, nonjudgmental information. By this way of thinking, all your mistake means is: There is a better way to do that. You can try again, and get a better outcome.

This is a great perspective on failure and mistakes. It’s great knowledge to have. But….

fear of failure

For a person who has a part of themselves that rules with an iron fist over mistakes, that knowledge is not enough. That part is very strong and frequently reminding the person of all of the things that could go terribly wrong and ruin their lives. This fearful part makes it hard for a person to just jump up and begin doing something new regardless is if mistakes are just feedback.

Fear of Failure is One of the Greatest Fears People Have

What some people consider “trying new things” can feel more like “taking risks” to others. It’s pretty scary to think of taking a risk in your professional or personal life!

Most of us have a part that holds us back from trying new things. This part has good intentions for us. It wants to protect us from criticism and rejection. Because of course, feeling humiliated or embarrassed is not something we would choose.

Sometimes this part feels like fear and sometimes it may show up disguised as procrastination, tiredness, confusion, sadness…only you can know.

This part arises in us because we have experienced humiliation, embarrassment, criticism, and rejection. The part that holds these memories are often stuck in the past with this bad, painful experience. To protect us, that part developed coping strategies so that we could avoid these feelings.

The problem comes when these strategies hold us hostage. We may not even realize we are leading with this cautious part. We just notice we aren’t achieving our goals or dreams. Or worse yet, we have stopped dreaming and are just doing each day on auto-pilot.

So, the cost of being safe is your success!

How to Overcome Your Fear of Failure

So where to begin?

One way to move on so that you can do all those great suggestions that are out there in regards to becoming successful and take risks is get to know your parts better and see which ones may be holding your back. Extend your curiousity to this cluster of parts of you and befriend them. Interview them and get to know them better.

  • How are they helpful?
  • What are they afraid would happen if they did not hold you back?
  • What do they remember about getting rejected or looking bad?
  • How old were they when this happened?
  • If they knew you would be successful for sure could they go on vacation and stop over doing the worry or procrastination?

You have an entire internal world of parts that work on your behalf. Once you get to know this internal family better you will have more access to all of you and can use your parts as advisers as you stay in Self Leadership.

Eleanor Roosevelt was either an expert on being scared or being brave, depending on how you look at it. She said:

  • “Do one thing a day that scares you”
  • “A women is like a tea bag you never know how strong it is until you add hot water”

So look inside get to know your parts and step into hot water and self-leadership.

NEW: listen to my podcast about overcoming the fear of failure.