Working From A Position Of Fear

I’m going to own up to something up front. I’m not as confident a person as some people think I am. Often, I feel like I’m reacting more than being proactive. Sometimes, when it gets overwhelming, I don’t act at all. Does that surprise you?

Fear Itself
Christi Nielsen via Compfight

It shouldn’t. Truth be told, even the most successful people have times when they’re unsure of something. Some of the smartest people in the world have had times when they’ve questioned their own beliefs and the work that they’ve done. I’m betting that every person who reads this has had the same thing happen to them, if it’s not happening right now. Who’s ready to own up to that?

FEAR – False Evidence Appearing Real. Who’s heard that phrase? It’s totally true; I mean, think about it for a minute. Do we fear things because we know that they’re absolutely going to go badly or because we suppose they will?

Sometimes fear is a smart thing. Fear is what keeps us (most of us anyway) from jumping off cliffs with towels around our necks thinking we’re going to fly like Superman. Fear is what keeps us from picking up cookies in the dirt and eating them.

Sometimes fear is irrational, but it is what it is. I’m scared of bugs and a few other things that I have no real explanation for. There are people scared of leaving their homes. There are people scared of clowns… well, that one might be valid. 🙂

Sometimes fear is something we have to fight. There might be an underlying cause, to the point that you know it’s there, know how to fight it, but sometimes you just can’t put it all together and overcome it.

The last one is the one I’m addressing today, because it’s the one that holds all of us back from achieving what we really want, which is success. Who doesn’t want to be successful? Do you know how to be successful? I talked about it in this video, which some of you new folks might not have seen since it’s from 2013:

So, I do know the path to being successful. Yet, this is my biggest weakness. After 14 years of being in business for myself, you’d think I would have this one conquered. Heck, I even know how to do it, along with its counterpart. What’s the issue?

I’ve been told I’m too nice at times; yeah, I don’t believe it either. lol My issue is that I don’t want to bother people, even during the day when they’re in a business that I can offer services for that I know they need. Trust me, I know they need at least two of the services I can provide, and other people probably need some of the other services I can provide, though they’re not all that critical.

Corporate Books

I go back and forth between that thing where, growing up, I was taught not to bother people or, as we all heard, “talk to strangers”, as opposed to “you’re the president of your company; you’re supposed to bother people.” By the way, I am the president of my company. It’s official; take a look at the picture of my corporate books to the left. 🙂

Here’s the thing. If we’re in business, or we’re trying to be in business, or we have something we want to market or sell, we have to be willing to put ourselves out there and get it done.

We also have to be willing to do other things that help us out by giving ourselves an opportunity to have something to help promote us. That’s actually the reason I wrote my second book titled Leadership Is/Isn’t Easy, because it gave me a second book on the topic of leadership that I can promote, since my last book was from 2004 and the newest product I had after that was from 2009; I have to do way more than that.

That’s the thing about fear; it inhibits us from doing what we need to do. So we don’t ask out the person we’d like to date (okay, I’m married, but you know what I mean lol). We don’t ask for more sauce for our lasagna. We don’t want to ask for our money back when we buy something that’s deficient.

We don’t ask for the sale. We don’t put the things we create out into the market. We don’t promote our services, our blogs, our businesses… we’re fearful of the reaction we might get because… we do the same thing to others who are trying to sell and market to us. Who can disagree with this?

It’s a lesson we have to learn. We have to break the fear of trying. We have to break the fear of rejection. We have to break the fear of not being good enough. Something I was listening to last night brought it all together with this statement: “I’d rather fail a hundred times than wonder what could have been.”

That’s why about six weeks ago I asked what can I teach you? I’m going to be creating more products and marketing them. I’m going to create a few product pages of some things I’m really high on and I’m going to promote them. I’m also going to reach out and talk more about services I provide; those you might not necessarily see on this blog but I’m going to do it anyway.

Because all of us can be successful, but it takes courage because that’s what overcomes fear. And unlike spiders and grasshoppers (ugh… lol)… this one I know I can defeat. Who’s with me?

22 thoughts on “Working From A Position Of Fear”

  1. Yeah, I think we’re all too familiar with the false evidence.

    I am trying something new to overcome it. I am working with a business coach. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes, if I am not blogging about the progress and challenges.

    1. Hi Rasheed,

      Kindly do keep us updated here, I’m sure a lot of other people will be interested in your update.



  2. Excellent post Mitch!

    And who can actually claim with a straight face, that at
    some point, we weren’t the casualty of fear?

    Or how we’ve literally second guessed ourselves out of countless, potential opportunities!

    And false evidence or not!

    If we don’t learn how to effectively deal with fear, we won’t reach and get to enjoy the fruits of our full potential!

    And I absolutely love your message in your video BTW!

    Another word and activity far too many entrepreneurs fear!LOL!

    1. Thanks Mark. I have times when I’m fearless and times when I’m not. Self doubt creeps onto all of us. Still, I’m glad for the times when I’m feeling aggressive; I need more of that as I get older though. 🙂

  3. Mitch Sir, I’m convinced that fear is crippling more organizations than I ever dreamed possible. With unemployment as high as it is, fear is naturally higher than in a robust economy. For individuals, I say face your fear–write it down, and then make a plan of action. If you are consistently working in a way that boosts your own skills, you will end up in a more secure place.

    1. First Uttam, I changed your name because what you’d written violated the commenting policy of the blog; only names in the name box. If I didn’t already know you I’d have deleted the comment; see why it’s good to know our readers. lol

      Second, I agree with your assessment about fear. Yet, it seems to be the way of the world, where an unstable economy and rampant poverty makes every day a challenge. Even in my position, where I’m more responsible for my money than others might be, I sometimes feel I have little control over anything.

      1. Sorry I made an mistake. And thank you for that you modified the given name “#KeepMeQuite”. But I accept your comment policy. I will never do it again.

        And thank you that you are agree with my assessments.

      2. I am glad! That you visited my blog. As you know I am new in the blogging world(6 months on other). I came and coming on you blog for blogging and other informative knowledge and visiting regularly to see that is there any latest post.
        I have a request for you that can you please check my blog and tell me, which thing I have to do more on it. Thank you.
        You can delete this comment for your policy. I did not used your email maybe you have thousands of messages there so commented here.
        Thanks again. mr******@gm***.com

      3. Uttam, I’m not going to delete the message because it gives me a chance to respond to your question for everyone.

        Unless it’s an official visit I don’t normally visit people’s blogs and offer tips like that unless I’m being paid. Hey, I’m a businessman after all. However, I will offer this one bit of advice, mainly because I’ve written about it often here. If you’re going to be using your blog as a business venture in some fashion you’re going to have to think about moving to a self hosted blog. The issue is it’s hard for you to truly market yourself and stand out when you’re on a free blogging site. You also might have to worry that one day that big G might decide it’s not their taste and then you’ll lose all your content.

        Just something to think about.

      4. Thanks!
        One person also told me about self hosting.
        Now I am not able to choose a self host but I want as you told after sometime (February 2016). Until then they will not delete it?

      5. You’ll be fine; they don’t go that fast, and it’s possible that, as big as it is, they may never see your blog. It’s just not a bad thing to have control over your own content.

  4. Hi Mitch,

    Nice post you’ve got here.

    It couldn’t have been better said.

    Someone said “Fear is like paying interest on a loan you have not collected”

    At the end of the day, Fear is useless.

    Thanks for the post



    1. Thanks for your comment Dan. That’s an interesting quote; I had to go look it up to see who said it, only to find it unattributed… so I’m letting you have it. lol It makes a lot of sense, though it’s hard to overcome.

  5. Did you just have a 70s moment, there, or are you planning to sell drugs? “Things I’m really high on,” indeed. 🙂

    “Hey, man, I’m high on LIFE.” Or leadership. Sell it, Mitch!

    On a more serious note, “We don’t promote our services, our blogs, our businesses… we’re fearful of the reaction we might get because… we do the same thing to others who are trying to sell and market to us. Who can disagree with this?” Not me. Nope. Can’t argue with that one. Why do we always assume others are going to be negative-me, times ten? LOL

    1. That you can even make those references shows how old you are! lol

      The reason we think it’s going to be “us” is because it’s actually us on downers (another 70’s reference). If we didn’t have filters and didn’t know how to behave ourselves that’s how we’d probably act… a lot like young people today. 🙂

  6. Mitch, you know what sucks? For many people, their first exposure to “being in business” is by way of some dodgy MLM or another. (Worse, they stumble on a snakeoil sales web site.)

    After being lied to, they develop fears that never should have seen the light of day. Naturally, this gets in the way of the One True Path: Always Be Closing! 🙂

    If selling is the secret to Success, then belief in your product or service is the password. If folks think about how they feel when happily discussing something they are knowledgeable about, then think about the absence of that feeling when pushing something crappy or too complicated for them to grasp, then they will understand the point of your video.

    Okay, end of rant.



    1. Mitch, I tend to believe that most people who get into MLM pretty quickly end up dealing in fear. I’m not sure if it’s the realization that not all of their friends or people they know will support them because they’re not interested or because they lose belief in the product, but you start seeing them push to the point of being irritating. I’ve met a few people who are cool with the product they’re promoting because they actually believe in it and use it and figure if others feel their confidence that they’ll want a piece of that. If not…

      In general though, I think we all have at least a bit of fear that holds us back, and that’s what separates us from those who are big achievers. Now, if there are things one has to do to compromise their beliefs, that’s one thing. If we’re putting things up that get in our way, that’s another. I’m always working on trying not to stop myself; sometimes I succeed. lol

  7. Hi Mitch,

    I want to start by apologizing for not stopping by earlier.
    I simply got caught up in other things and overlooked it.

    But I’m glad I’m here now because this is a beautiful post – and so true.

    I can easily admit to the fact that I have felt uneasy about approaching people for any number of reasons – ESPECIALLY to sell them something. And like you, I know I have a product that can help people, but I have gotten in my own way in regard to promoting it properly and have used any and all excuses as to why I haven’t gotten it into the hands of those who would benefit from my book.

    Fear when used improperly (which is the case for a lot of us often) stops the imagination from working – and prevents us in listening to it when it guides us.

    Here we are, born with the innate ability to create and bring our most treasured ideas to the world…and we get in our own way because of some invisible barrier we give our power away to.

    I’m going to share this because I love the message.
    Thank-you for composing this.

    1. Thanks for your kind words Dana. It’s something I struggle with on a weekly basis, the fear of bothering people. Yet, there’s no other way they’re going to find out about me if I don’t, and I know what I can offer is valuable. So… I’ll keep pounding away at myself and my goals, as we all should do.

  8. Here is something you might want to go to focusing on the task at hand. Deep focus as opposed to sort of shallow busywork. triple w .artofmanliness dot com /2016/01/12/podcast-168-the-value-of-deep-work-in-the-age-of-distraction/

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