A brave “WOMAN” is not the one who has no fear but one who is able to look fear in the eye and take the step – Nelson Mandela.
We are all born with fears, and throughout the course of our lives, we all learn to live with our fears. Fear is a great emotion, a part of our fight or freeze response that keeps us safe and alive. The problem arises when it gets out of control and stops us from doing things and having experiences that are crucial to our personal development.
The fear you feel when you have to stand up in a room full of strangers to share your ideas or give a presentation can feel as real and threatening as the fear you feel when faced by a wild animal. As our brain can’t tell the difference between imaginary fear or perceived threats and real danger – we run the risk of running away from both.
We need to learn to separate these two fears in order to manage them accordingly. Our goal is not to live without fear, but to take action despite the fear, learning to pursue our dreams and goals wholeheartedly and live fuller, richer lives.
We can only achieve this when we define our fears and embrace them for the opportunity they present for our personal growth and development. Imagine a year when your fears did not restrict your life. A year when you said yes to your fears – A year of yes!
This idea of saying yes to your fears is inspired by Shonda Rhimes “Year Of Yes”, one of our book recommendations shared from Renee Hunt, an inspirational leader whilst in conversations with Griselda Togobo. You can listen to the full interview with Renee Hunt here.
Here are 6 Fears To Leave Behind In 2021:
Fear Of Speaking Up And Advocating For Themselves And Others
Many women list asking questions, confronting their bosses, getting fired for speaking up and negotiating their salaries as some of their biggest fears. According to a 2016 study published in the European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, agreeable women are compensated less. But when women agree less and confront their bosses to try negotiating their salaries and benefits, they are often called demanding or ambitious. This has caused a lot of women to hold back from the fear of speaking up and advocating for themselves.
Fear Of Being Found Out – Imposter Syndrome
A recent study by KPMG found that 75% of executive women reported having personally experienced imposter syndrome at specific points in their career, so you are not alone in that respect if you battle with feeling like an imposter. It is fair to note that these women are still pushing forward despite battling imposter syndrome.
Fear Of Missing Out (FOMO)
FOMO is a feeling that makes you spread yourself thin—wanting to be everywhere and fearing that life is passing you by.
Having the FOMO experience is not something that is new to our era, it has been around for many years. It was recently studied some few decades ago and was coined “The Fear of Missing Out” in a research paper in 1996, by marketing strategist, Dr. Dan Herman. Everyone experiences FOMO at different points in their lives, so when you feel that you are missing out and life is passing you by, know that you are not alone in this and life is certainly not passing you by.
Fear Of Personal Failure
We all fear failure. It is a deep-rooted fear that we all battle with, irrespective of our gender. Yet some of life’s greatest gifts come wrapped in loss, disappointment and failure. You have to be willing to fail your way to success.
Fear Of Being Disliked
The fear of being disliked makes us chronic people-pleaser – to our detriment. People-pleasing only leads to people taking advantage of you. Especially when you are looking for validation, the truth is that not everybody will like you. Focus on gaining the respect of your peers rather than being liked by everyone. There is a brilliant book by the same title- Have the courage to be disliked.
Fear Of Being Judged
Women do get judged unfairly. The double standards persist in our workplaces when it comes to how we judge and reward our men and women. Trying to avoid being judged will only lead to shrinking yourself to fit people’s warped views of what women should do and be. Take up more space and let us normalise women being rewarded more and accomplishing higher strides in life.
Fear of Success
The fear of success involves being afraid of achievement, which causes many women to self-sabotage. Most women believe that success brings too many problems. But the more successful you get, the bigger your capacity to deal with whatever life throws at you.
Take steps to address your fears. You are stronger than your wildest fears.