embrace fear as a business owner

Why You Need To Embrace Fear as a Small Business Owner to Succeed

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 that’s always churning in your belly and your mind.

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, and if it’s not there, you may not be ready to start a business.

embrace fear as a small business owner

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.

If you’ve ever launched a new business, you likely know all too well that mixed feeling of joy and absolute terror that’s always churning in your belly and your mind. #SmallBiz Click To Tweet

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, lack of cash flow can crush your business, but 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, seek out opportunities to grow, and 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.

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.

And as a new business owner, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the requirements placed on your shoulders. #smallbusinessowner Click To Tweet

Embrace Fear as a Small Business Owner Helps Keeps You Motivated

No one starts a business with the thinking, “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.

set goals to avoid fear

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.

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

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

If you aren’t a bit scared, however, you’re likely to get complacent and lose your motivation to achieve those goals #smallbusinessowner Click To Tweet

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.

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

When you change your mindset relevant to how you approach 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 where you can take your business.

Do you embrace fear as a small business owner? We’d love to know more in the comments below.

Instead, embrace fear. Leverage it to uncover opportunities for growth and to keep you moving forward. #smallbusinessowner Click To Tweet

3 thoughts on “Why You Need To Embrace Fear as a Small Business Owner to Succeed”

  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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