Entrepreneurialism – Facing The Fear Factor

What is it that stops someone from pursuing a dream?


Fear is a great debilitator in the world of entrepreneurialism. It is fear that causes us to halt when we need to step forward. It is fear that views any risk as an insurmountable obstacle. It is fear that will keep the ‘dream’ alive only in the most private of thoughts.

Eleanor Roosevelt once said, “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.”

Eleanor spoke very wisely when she encouraged others to look fear in the face. So often we have the tendency to recognize fear and then allow that fear to grow until we can hardly breathe when thinking about it.

Mrs. Roosevelt also provided the same encouragement expressed by Nike – Just Do It. She made no attempt to minimize the fear we may experience, she simply provided a bold declaration that there is something waiting beyond the fear if we will move through the thing that instills fear to the other side where we are likely to find courage and success.

Fear is not a rational thing. You cannot explain it away, but you can look for the truth about what you fear the most. In entrepreneurialism this can be accomplished by asking questions of those who have developed a business of their own. It can also be accomplished by researching the risks involved in business ownership. Once these steps are taken you may need to ask an unbiased, yet trusted, source to help you honestly understand your strengths and weaknesses to determine if you can face your fear with a strong chance of success.

It is interesting to note that often we fail to trust ourselves enough to make a determination on our abilities to do something.

If you don’t have someone you can talk with to determine the truth about the fears you may have when contemplating an entrepreneurial effort you can always begin by taking a notebook and listing your strengths and weaknesses. You can follow that up by identifying the pros and cons of business ownership. Write a letter to yourself about the fears you have and try to determine how much truth there is to the fears you’ve expressed.

Entrepreneurialism does require a certain amount of risk and risk can instill a certain amount of fear. You should always seek the truth about yourself and face your fears one at a time. With each small victory you come closer to gaining what Eleanor Roosevelt described as “Strength, courage and confidence by every experience.”