how to overcome fear of starting a business

How to overcome fear of starting a business

Let’s walk through a six step process for how to overcome fear of starting a business. We’ll define your fears, reduce risks, treat failure as a teacher, and more. Ready to start or are your still afraid?

how to overcome fear of starting a business

How to overcome fear of starting a business

Step 1: Reduce the Risks by Making a Plan 

For many of us, waiting until we are ready prevents us from getting started. If you wait until you know everything, you’ll hit go. We need to figure out what’s holding you back and eliminate it.

One of the easiest ways to eliminate fear is to eliminate the risk. What are you afraid of? What are the real risks?

Possible fears might be things like failure, running out of money, or not being good enough. Unfortunately, I don’t have a guaranteed method for success and despite what people out there are selling, I don’t believe there is one.

You might fail, run out of money, or not be good enough. There are ways to run a business which will result in those fears ruining your life. Alternatively, maybe they’re just good life lessons that get you one step closer to success. 

Let’s reframe fear. Fear is valid and justified, sometimes. However, if we reduce the risks then you have less to lose.

Ways you can reduce risks in order to overcome fear:

  1. Stick to a budget and have low overhead. Until you prove that you can make money, don’t spend money. Most businesses can be started and built slowly piece by piece until you have a solid foundation.
  2. Determine what skills you need and develop them. The psychology of flow is all about finding the balance between the right amount of challenge and skill. If you’re not challenged, you might be bored whereas if you’re too challenged you’re likely to have anxiety. Grow your skills until they meet the requirement for the level of challenge you’re taking on.
  3. Build systems and redundancy. What’s your plan for how you’re going to do something? And what’s your back-up plan?
  4. Diversity your income. Can you have more than one income source so that you’re less reliant on one thing. This is a lesson we learned the hard way in 2020 but the more diversified you are the more resilient you are.
  5. Test your idea. Is your idea good? Test it or share it with someone you trust. Be sure you’re not sharing it with someone who will say whatever you want to hear but this person should have a track record of being supportive and wanting what’s best for you.

Step 2: Start with the Basics and Get Your Feet Wet

Sometimes you just have to take the first step. Put your running shoes out the night before, put them on, and then the next thing you know you’re on a run. What’s one small step you can take?

Once you gain momentum, things get less scary. Doing something scary and surviving gives you the self-confidence to do something else. Take it one step at a time by starting with the basics will help you build the foundation.

Give yourself grace. Don’t expect to be an expert on day 1. Learn and grow and celebrate the small milestones on your path towards your goal.

Remember that there is no such thing as an overnight success, most people work really hard for a long time before they have a breakthrough. Becoming an expert requires 10,000 hours of practice, how are you going to get that experience?

I suggest the following three step process:

  1. Pick something you are interested in
  2. Pick something you need to know
  3. Master one small thing and then build on it.

Once you master one small aspect of your business it will be easier to learn another one. Trying to do everything at once is overwhelming and stressful.

Step 3: See Failure as a Teacher

How do you plan to get better if you’re afraid to try something new? Scratch that, we’re all afraid to try something new. The question is, do you let your fear stop you?

Part of our fear is around failure. Instead of trying to avoid it, embrace failure as a teacher. Yes, if we can learn from the experiences of others there are some mistakes we can avoid, but failure is also part of the process.

Failure means you tried something new. Failure means you learned what didn’t work and can adjust it. And failure means you’re one step closer to success.

Lean into your fear, your failures, and your stresses. It’s not always easy but if you can take a deep breath and step back from the situation, you can see what you’re learning and take that as a win. Learning and growing is a win.

Step 4: Decide You Can’t NOT Try

I think one of the things that will push you to overcome your fear is deciding that the alternative is worse. Sure, it’s scary and you might fail. But if you don’t try you’ll never know and you’ll be stuck where you are.

At some point, if you’ve been thinking about trying something new long enough, you’ll hit a breaking point. You won’t be satisfied with the way things are. You’ll be bored and want more for yourself and your life.

Use that moment as fuel to overcome your fears and step towards your goals.

Step 5: Set Small Goals and Celebrate Them

This goes back to the idea of not trying to be an expert from day one. You might feel like you’re failing if you set unrealistic goals. I believe in big dreams and big goals, however, it’s important to have smaller goals along the way.

Maybe you need a big wall calendar to track your progress. Or perhaps you frame your first dollar. Regardless of how you recognize your goals, be sure to knowledge them and celebrate them.

I’ve found that often by the time I achieve a goal, I’ve already moved on to a bigger goal. This shoes the snowballs effect of how achieving something small leads to achieving something bigger. However, it also shows the challenge of blowing right past something that’s a pretty big deal.

The last thing we want to do is get caught in a never ending cycle of being unsatisfied. Sure goals are good and growth is good. However, it can be equally important to find gratitude for where you are in this moment today.

Enjoy the journey because that’s all there is. Once you reach one point of success your target will move and it will be out of reach again. Celebrate now, be grateful and proud!

how to overcome fear of starting a business

Step 6: Community, Accountability, Support, Mentorship

Don’t go it alone. I don’t mean that you should find a business partner, I just mean that it helps to have someone in your corner. Find a mentor who has been there and can give you support and encouragement when you’re feeling self-doubt. Or have a community of other small business owners that you bounce ideas around with.

Starting a business can be scary and lonely. Why not find ways to make it less scary by finding ways to make it less lonely?

Summary of how to overcome fear of starting a business

Here’s the six steps on how to overcome fear of starting a business:

  1. Reduce the Risks by Making a Plan
  2. Start with the Basics and Get Your Feet Wet
  3. See Failure as a Teacher
  4. Decide You Can’t NOT Try
  5. Set Small Goals and Celebrate Them
  6. Community, Accountability, Support, Mentorship

check out more recent posts:

Let us know how you liked this how to guide and if there’s anything you want us to talk about in future posts.

Next, get our free Build Your Life e-guide. You might enjoy checking out our recommended reading list.

Recent Building a Life and Tips for Wedding Photographers you might enjoy:

stay in touch with more tips

We also have posts on gear such as these drone accessories.

We are Marc and Brenda Bergreen, a husband and wife photography team specializing in Colorado wedding photography and other adventures. Let us help you make your wedding an adventure! It would be an honor to capture your love.

Don’t hesitate to contact us and let us know how we can help! Be sure to follow us (weddings instagram & adventures instagram) and/or like us (facebook) to stay tuned.

In the meantime, remember to…

love adventurously bergreen photography

Similar Posts