embrace fear as a business owner

Why You Need To Embrace Fear as a Small Biz Owner

Do you embrace fear as a small business owner? If you’ve ever launched a new business, you likely know all too well that mixed feeling of joy and absolute terror.

It’s there always churning in your belly and your mind. You may find yourself awake at all hours of the night.

One minute, you’re on top of the world, super excited about your venture and the potential that lies ahead. The next minute, you’re in full panic mode, looking at worst-case scenarios and envisioning a massive failure (one that’s not real, by the way) and having to run back to your 9-5 job.

I’m here to tell you, that feeling is totally normal. In fact, if you aren’t getting that feeling, you should be concerned.

When starting any kind of business, there’s always that element of risk. And risk leads to fear.

A healthy amount of fear can actually benefit you. If it’s not there, you may not be ready to start a business.

Let’s get started on how to embrace fear as a small business owner.

embrace fear

Embrace Your Fears

Let’s take a look at three reasons why you need to embrace fear, not let it hold you back, as you launch your business and how changing your mindset about how you approach fear can impact your chances of success.

Why Embrace Fear as a Small Business Owner?

Fear is a necessary part of the business. All the risk involved makes our minds wander, and it tends to create visions in our heads of the potential pitfalls that lie ahead.

And why not? Stats show that around 20% of businesses fail within 5 years, and if you push that number to 10 years, nearly 50% meet the same fate.

I often find, however, that business owners who fail are actually much closer to success than they think. Yes, a lack of cash flow can crush your business. However, many times it’s simply fear that causes small business owners to shut their doors.

When fear creeps into your business mindset, instead of letting the doubt grow and thinking about shutting down, embrace that fear, and seek out opportunities to grow. Then, stay passionate and focused on your business.

Let’s look at three ways embracing fear can help you grow your small business.

Stay Focused on the Right Things

There’s a lot that goes into running a business. And as a new business owner, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the requirements placed on your shoulders.

stay focused to get over your fear
Learn to stay more focused to help ease your fear.

Fear can be a good motivator to keep you focused and check in on the little things you need to be doing to keep your business running. Sending invoices, marketing your business, building relationships with vendors – you know the drill.

Make sure you have a detailed plan to focus on each of the things that keep your business afloat.

Embracing your fears will keep you focused on monitoring your plan and ensuring you’re checking off each of the necessary tasks on your list.

Embrace Fear as a Small Business Owner Helps Keeps You Motivated

No one starts a business with thoughts like, “I want to launch this thing and then crash it into the ground in about a year.” We all have aspirations to succeed when we start, albeit on different levels depending on our goals.

Set your goals, and use fear to motivate you to reach them. And please keep in mind, I’m not referring to instilling fear in your team by yelling at them. I’m referring to the fear that only you as a leader feel with the pressure to succeed.

How To Set Goals

Set goals that are attainable, both long- and short-term. Then consider what would happen if you don’t achieve them. Consider what would happen to both you and the livelihoods of your team members.

Leverage this as motivation to ensure you keep pushing forward toward meeting and even exceeding your goals to embrace fear.

Set lofty goals, but not too lofty. If you aren’t a bit scared, however, you’re likely to get complacent and lose your motivation to achieve those goals. Often, you can start making excuses when you don’t meet them.

Embracing fear will instead allow you to always stay focused on achieving those goals.

However, if you don’t reach them, you’re more likely to make the necessary changes to get you the end results you desire. You do this rather than continuing to make excuses as to why you fell short.

Suggested Reading: Business Resources to Help You Start and Grow a Business

Be On the Lookout for Opportunities to Improve

Growth is the key to maintaining a successful small business. Fear will keep you focused on looking for opportunities to expand and grow.

Keep tabs on your competitors. This will cultivate a healthy fear of watching them pass you by.  And nobody wants that.

Thus, your eyes will remain more open to opportunities to uncover and exploit the mistakes your competitors are making and the gaps in their operations. Then you can leverage your findings to benefit your own business.

Examples For You Of Failed Businesses

You’ve seen what happens to businesses that aren’t flexible and are closed off to change. Consider examples like Nokia and Blockbuster. They failed to move forward as their competitors innovated and changed the world.

These are examples of what can happen to brands that stand still and ignore the trends.

Use examples of failed brands like the ones mentioned above to motivate you to be on the lookout for changes you can make to your business to improve processes, boost your cash flow, be better at customer service, and ultimately grow your business. Sometimes you may even need to fire a client to improve your own business.

Use fear to keep you in tune with ways to incorporate innovation into your business and improve things to better position your brand in the market.

Changing Your Mindset To Embrace Fear

When you change your mindset relevant to how you approach the fear, you set yourself up for success.

Fear is natural. And a little bit of it can go a long way in pushing you forward and helping you keep your eyes on the prize. Ignoring fear, or letting it take over fully, however, can crush your business.

Instead, embrace fear. Leverage it to uncover opportunities for growth and to keep you moving forward.

By changing the way you approach your fear, you’ll ultimately become more confident. You’ll always be on the lookout for new ideas, and you’ll avoid becoming stagnant as a business.

Fear isn’t a bad word. It has the power to drive us to achieve more than we ever thought possible. And when you start to approach fear in this way, you’ll be amazed at where you can take your business.

change your mindset
Change your mindset to help you embrace fear.

Do What You Are Fearful Of To Embrace Fear

For example, if you are afraid of public speaking, think about how much better you will feel after completing your presentation. Not only that but think about the opportunities that could come from it.

Do something every day that you are afraid of. One thing I remember that Lisa was afraid of was zip lining. Once she did it, she loved it and did it again a few times afterward.

Applying these types of things as a business owner will help you do more risky things to grow your business. Without risk, there is no reward! 

Your Turn: How You Embrace Fear

Do you embrace fear as a small business owner? What have you done recently that you were afraid of? We’d love to know more in the comments below.

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3 thoughts on “Why You Need To Embrace Fear as a Small Biz Owner”

  1. I agree! Fear can conquer us, or we can conquer fear and create something really good out of it. Fear is such a powerful motivator it can sometimes help us to do things we might not do if we didn’t feel it. Something as simple as fear of not being able to pay our bills inspires us to take action and do something to earn money so can pay our bills. Small business owners can absolutely channel fear and make it work for them in big ways. Great post!

    1. Hi Sabina, welcome to Small Biz Tipster 🙂 Thank you, I hope you let fear channel you in the right direction as well.

    2. Fear is certainly a valuable motivator. As long as we don’t let it consume us or stop us in our tracks. As a small business owner, our backs can be against the wall sometimes. This can create a sense of fear and doubt. Instead of crumbling under the pressure, it’s important to embrace that fear and instead allow it to motivate you.

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