Posted on Leave a comment

Fear of Failure

fear of failure

There’s nothing like a job interview to bring out the fear of failure. fear of failure

Fear of failure in a job interview

Have you been to a job interview recently? Have you sat across a table from your prospective employers to face the barrage of questions which seek to determine your suitability for that particular job? Usually they ask you to demonstrate times in your career when you can show that you demonstrated the attributes for the role in question. You relate your successes, explaining how you achieved those wondrous things that your previous employer was so enamoured with.

But how many would-be employers ask you about your failures? How many ask you what you managed to salvage from the wreckage? Or seek to see the building blocks that made you successful in the areas the work demands? How many seek to know what you have learned?

Facing your fears (and even using them)

Successful entrepreneurs are not people who have never failed, but rather people who have learnt from their failures. And most importantly they are prepared to give it a go.

Ken Robinson, the education guru, once told the story of a little girl in a drawing lesson (TED talks) . Normally this little girl was very quiet and somewhat withdrawn but in this lesson she was really going at the drawing she was making. So the teacher asked, “What are you drawing?” and the little girl responded, “a picture of God.” “But noone knows what God looks like?” answered the teacher. And the little girl replied, “They will in a minute.” Mr Robinson’s point was that children will give it a go even when they don’t know how to proceed. They are not afraid of failure.

So often we do not take the chances in life because the result is unknown. Or we are unsure if what we will create will be a success. And so we stifle our creative spirit because we are afraid to risk, we become risk-averse. Hence we settle for what is, not because it is wonderful but because we are afraid to pursue what is better, in case we don’t make it. In case we flunk. But isn’t life for embracing?

Taking risks

Christian commentator Tony Campolo, once surmised that risks need to be taken. He reported comments from a group of senior citizens who stated that the consequences of our failures are never as bad as we imagine. I contend that if we do not risk then we destroy ourselves, simmering away in our cauldron of mediocrity.

So the next time you wonder why you are sat in a life of boredom, or tedium then ask yourself are you risking anything to change it? Extend the hand to a stranger or an enemy, go for that job, take yourself out of the house, join that club, become a DJ at the local radio. Whatever it is, don’t fear the consequences. Weigh it up and make that jump. You might find your life takes off and you’re capable of more than you ever imagined.

What fear if failure did for me

There’s no doubt that the fear of failure meant I was over 40 before I self-published my first novel, Crescendo. It was a big risk but one worth taking. Whether or not it becomes a ‘best-seller’ is as yet undecided but the self-fulfillment and achievement of writing has made facing my fears totally justifiable.

Posted on Leave a comment

The Fear of Failure



Are you a dreamer? Do you imagine your life being different? Is there something you have wanted to do for a long time and just not got round to it? Or are you unsure how to make it happen? Do you have belief that it will happen one day?
Many of us talk about the day our ship sails in or the day when we win the lottery. We imagine a step change from a point of monotony to a place where the beaches are golden and the world is our oyster. A click of the fingers, a sudden upheaval, an incredibly unlikely fluke, the numbers on our lottery ticket.
It is strange that we look at people who have what they want in this life and think how lucky they must have been to get there. We seem to ignore dedication, hard work, endless rehearsal and heart stopping moments of despair in these people getting to their elevated position. I am not referring to those who have large salaries but rather to those who have what they want in their life.
Even if we do see these things and believe we can commit to them, many of us will still not engage this change to a different life. And what stops us. No guarantees, no absolute belief in a perfect outcome. Namely a fear of failure.
I find this funny. As adults we encourage children to have a go. The rhetoric is constantly to believe in yourself. Sometimes it is to believe in God. We dismiss the idea of failure with our children, make them think themselves ridiculous to be afraid of it. Or do we? Do we not teach them to hug the status quo? Follow a path to comfortable living rather than to be a game changer in this world. Keep your head down, work hard, don’t annoy the boss.
When did we decide that all risk is too much? When did we decide all failure must be avoided? When we do this, we don’t think in new ways, we don’t enable our dreams and something inside dies. The creative spark expires. As a Christian, the image of the Creator in me fades.
I say time for a new manifesto, time to take our risks. Time to embrace new thinking about people. Reach out to the difficult person, the lonely person. Put our neck on the line by going over the fence, go and see if the grass is greener. Let’s be courageous in the face of change, continuing on until we reach our destination, ignoring those who would decry us. Be prepared to be different, to take a real punt at this life. Cos you know, things never turn out as bad as you thought they might. And they often become a lot better than you thought they ever wo




G R Jordan author, poet, and top Dad apparently!