Taking the next step in your career, just like many things in life, can be really frightening.
Not ‘spider on the door handle’ type frightening, but a debilitating fear nonetheless – one that digs its claws into your confidence and your motivation, and drags you back to where things are safe and comfortable.
Now, if you’ve felt this before, you may already know 3 very important things about fear… but if you haven’t, there are 3 key elements that you MUST know, before you can conquer ANY fear when it comes to moving ahead in your career.
1. Fear is NOT going away;
2. Fear lives right on the edge of your comfort zone;
3. Fear is afraid of action.
Yes, it’s the truth. Fear IS NOT going away. In fact, the MORE you live and the MORE you grow, the more often you will feel it.
And that’s GREAT! Because fear really does live on the edge of your comfort zone, which means if you’re feeling fear, you’re actually living, learning and growing. Go YOU!
But the irony is, fear is also afraid – it’s afraid of ACTION! Getting into action, will reduce your fears every time because the more you do, the more you accomplish. And the more you accomplish, the more you will realise that there wasn’t really anything to be afraid of in the first place.
So, how can this realisation help you with your career?
Well, the sad truth is, many women do not progress in their career, not because of a lack of skills, abilities or competence. In fact, it usually doesn’t have ANYTHING to do with a lack of passion, skill or commitment.
Many women find that their career progression is stalled because of fear, and 3 confidence-crushing fears in particular.
The 3 Confidence-Crushing Fears that stall career progression!
1. Fear of Failure
Just the very word itself, invokes feelings of inadequacy, disappointment and dejection and for most career women, the fear of failure is usually what will stop them from even trying in the first place.
What if I speak up in a meeting – only to have my ideas shut down in front of everyone?
What if I embark on a new and exciting career path… and I fail?
What if I start succeeding in my career, but as a result I feel like I’m failing at being a mum, partner, friend etc?
The questions that the ‘fear of failure’ plagues us with, particularly throughout various transitional stages in our careers, can be endless.
How will I know when I’ve succeeded?
How many failures and disappointments can I possibly withstand?
And the worst one of all…
How will I know when it’s finally time to admit defeat?
Well, here’s the thing. You don’t and you won’t!
You’ll NEVER know when it’s time to quit, nor will you ever have to feel the crushing defeat of failure in your career IF… you accept that the very nature of life itself, is fraught with failure.
In fact, you can’t succeed without failure, so the sooner you acknowledge that (and make it a part of your life and work mentality), the faster you’ll be able to overcome this fear and move on and up in your career.
2. Fear of the WRONG DECISION!
Now, this one would actually be hysterically funny, if it wasn’t so scary, because you see… there’s no such thing as a wrong decision!
Yes, you may feel as though you’ve made choices that didn’t turn out as planned, or that you made a decision that did not work in the best interests of your career plan or progression BUT the reality is, you have NO IDEA where any other decision would have gotten you, so EVERY decision is actually the RIGHT DECISION at the time.
We can always assume, estimate and predict what we think the outcome of any decision may be, but the truth is, we’ll never know until we take that path.
If it works out, great! If it doesn’t though, it doesn’t mean that it was wrong, because you don’t actually know if the alternative would have been right either.
All it means is that you’ve been given the opportunity to learn and grow from the experience. So, take the learning, accept that you can’t make a wrong decision and… MOVE ON!
3. Fear of what OTHERS may think or say!
Now this one is ALWAYS present, whether you’d like to admit it or not, and sadly, it’s often the people closest to us who we feel are responsible for this fear.
How many times have you heard friends or family members say ‘Really? Do you think that’s the best career move right now?’ or ‘Have you thought about how that job will affect your family?’ or even ‘Are you sure you’re ready for that promotion?’
Each of these questions (and so many others) are a confidence-crushing blow to any woman in the workplace, because they imply that you haven’t thought things through and that you randomly make haphazard decisions without considering the consequences.
And we ALL know that’s never the case. In fact, as women, we OVER-think things and tend to consider more scenarios that are humanly possible. Which means that, by the time you’ve decided to switch to a new company, apply for that promotion or change career paths altogether, you’ve probably already run through every possible outcome in your head.
Sadly, no matter how skilled you are in what you do, no matter how much you believe in yourself and regardless of your competency, it’s usually THIS fear that will affect you the most.
For some reason, when making decisions about the next steps in our careers, we often tend to take the opinions of others as fact, and we allow them to influence us when it comes to OUR choices and OUR work.
Why do we do this?!?
NO ONE knows YOU, your determination, your passion OR your career skills, like you do. So don’t let ANYONE tell you what you can or cannot do… not even those closest to you.
Being afraid of what others might think or say about the choices you want to make for your career, is entirely counter productive and usually a pointless exercise.
They are NOT you, they are NOT on your personal career journey and they do NOT know the drive, the commitment or the strength of character that you possess, to climb that ladder and achieve success in the workplace.
So, if you’d like a really great tip on how you can conquer these fears, and so many others, we’ve got an amazing exclusive bonus for you below.
Just enter your details below and we’ll give you access to a mind-blowing video from our online course – The Ultimate Confidence Course for Women – that will give you amazing insights into how you can start to manage your fears once and take your confidence and your career to the next level!
And remember… BE YOU! We like her BEST!
Access one of our
MOST POWERFUL course videos on FEAR!