Fear is something that we all experience. Generally when we think of fear, we conjure up stereotypical images of snakes or serial killers in our minds. And it makes sense that this would be our go-to definition of fear. We tend to remember things that are out of the ordinary, and the truth is that the fear the some homicidal manic invokes in us is much more unique than the fear that we experience on the daily basis.
But it is not this fear that poses the greatest danger. Rather it is the fear that creeps into your mind when you’re at work or on the bus ride home – the fear of the unknown, of what will come tomorrow, next week, next year.
Having spent the last year and a half in an industry of which I knew little about when I started, I’ve experienced these feelings often. It’s not to say that these feelings weren’t juxtaposed with feelings of elation or self discovery, because they most certainly were. However, the one thing that has held me back and prevented me from reaching my full potential has been the little feeling of fear in the back of my mind.
When I sit at my desk wanting to work on a new project using some technology I’ve never used before or when I think of who I can be in 5 years, fear begins to creep up on me. “I don’t know what I’m doing”, “what if I can’t finish?”, “am I even good enough?”. All these questions begin to form in my head.
However, over the past year and a half, I’ve made a conscious effort to fight these feelings. I’ve learned you must ignore such thoughts, or they will consume and paralyze you. When you’re contemplating whether you can finish a project or even make a career change, make absolutely sure that any reasons you have for doubting whether you can or should pursue your goal are founded in fact and outweigh the potential rewards you stand to reap. Don’t stop yourself just because you fear the unknown or just because you doubt yourself.
Go for it.