Why is everyone so afraid of failing?

by 41 replies
I for one have failed dismally at plenty of things and if anything its made me a better business person.

If youre so worried about failing that you wont even try something new its time you change your mindset.

Failing is good for a range of reasons:
  • It will redirect you to something you should be doing
  • Its an opportunity to re-evaluate
  • It gives you another shot at something

Most weeks I fail at something - it can be something small like a client not being happy with the campaign direction or it can be massive and turns the next few weeks of my work on its ear, either way although it sucks at the time failure is always really positive.

Its about perspective.

To push through failure its important to focus and take action, evaluate, test and try again.

Internet marketers fail for so many reasons - which may include:

- Too much info and no idea what to do with it
- Not enough basic marketing knowledge
- Lack of time, tools and know how
- Lack of skills specifically in IM
- Lack of persistence (the I want it now mentality not being willing to work long and hard for it)

Im stoked I have failed so much, Id never be where I am today.

When did everyone get so petrified of failure anyway, isnt this about testing and seeing how it all works out?
#mind warriors #afraid #failing #whys
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  • Profile picture of the author customerblast
    The founder of IBM once said if you want to be successful, double your rate of failure.

    People are afraid of failing because they are afraid deep down they aren't good enough, don't have what it takes, etc. In other words they are taking it as a personal reflection of their own worth, which is the mistake.
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  • Profile picture of the author gingerninjas
    Failure is petrifying - but if you don't fail you'll never really get anything.

    I fail all the time, I take pride in failing and it's been the best thing for growing my business.

    I would hate to think I know everything and I can't make mistakes - what a boring life that would be.

    It's important to be vulnerable, make risks and try, sometimes this leads to failure - so what.
  • Profile picture of the author Randy McLean
    Good points.

    I agree - it's all theory until you actually get down to work and try it for yourself. Sometimes you might be surprised what works and what doesn't.

    Psychologically though, it's not the best thing for your head when you "fail." I know it's a cliche, but you only fail when you quit.

    I used to get real emotional when/if something didn't work. Now, I just look at the results in terms of numbers and just analyze it that way.

    If you separate yourself emotionally from the results, it's not that big of a deal.

    A lot of people are afraid to fail because of what others may think. Internet marketing is cool because a lot of your results are known only to you.

    You don't have to tell anyone like family or friends what you're doing until you start seeing results.

    On the other hand, if you were to open a hardware store there is a lot more pressure there.

    Each time you fail it only brings you once step closer to success. And it will come!
    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by Randy McLean View Post

      Good points.

      I agree - it's all theory until you actually get down to work and try it for yourself. Sometimes you might be surprised what works and what doesn't.

      Psychologically though, it's not the best thing for your head when you "fail." I know it's a cliche, but you only fail when you quit.

      I used to get real emotional when/if something didn't work. Now, I just look at the results in terms of numbers and just analyze it that way.

      If you separate yourself emotionally from the results, it's not that big of a deal.

      A lot of people are afraid to fail because of what others may think. Internet marketing is cool because a lot of your results are known only to you.

      You don't have to tell anyone like family or friends what you're doing until you start seeing results.

      On the other hand, if you were to open a hardware store there is a lot more pressure there.

      Each time you fail it only brings you once step closer to success. And it will come!
      Thanks Randy

      I used to get emotional too when things failed - it really knocked the wind out of my sails but then I realised without failing I wouldnt really ever develop and I should be actually happy in a way when I fail.

      The separation emotionally is tough to learn but it will save heaps of energy as I couldnt keep it up - it was exhausting.

      Great comment - thanks Randy.
  • Profile picture of the author neshaword
    That's a good question to ask. I also remember reading somewhere that a fear of success is also a very common thing to either experience or see all around you. It sounds a little bit strange, but when you give it a serious thought, it does make a sense. Eventually, if you aren't ready to accept the potential failure, then you aren't likely to give it even a fair try in trying to achieve your goals. So, it's inevitable. These things go hand-in-hand, both success and failure.
  • Profile picture of the author michdubs
    Failure is intimidating a lot, no one ever likes it especially when you are entering a highly saturated zone like IM
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    • Profile picture of the author customerblast
      its intimidating to think that you might try something and find out you're a failure indeed. but coming from the wrong place, as there is no failure.
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  • Profile picture of the author ColinB
    People (including myself) are afraid of failure because we tend to focus on the end result of our efforts rather than the process. This makes starting a project or venture extremenly daunting because we are focussed on the possibility of not having whatever we want at the end and that makes us afraid to take the plunge and start - the risk vs reward seems too high. I think.

    Any top level performance psychologist will tell you to focus on the process and the outcome will take care of itself. I think when someone is only interested in doing something because of the outcome, and the proocess is seems like an undesireable sacrifice, they will be less willing to take the risk.
  • Profile picture of the author alextrevayne
    Most of the people are afraid of failing because that's what we have been told since we were kids. The system (educational system) also does a good job of brainwashing you to believe that. We were always told you have to study hard so you can get good grades in school to then get a good job with a good salary. It was all about security and failing would not give you security. That's why people need another kind of education once they have been through that to implement freedom in their lives.
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    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by alextrevayne View Post

      Most of the people are afraid of failing because that's what we have been told since we were kids. The system (educational system) also does a good job of brainwashing you to believe that. We were always told you have to study hard so you can get good grades in school to then get a good job with a good salary. It was all about security and failing would not give you security. That's why people need another kind of education once they have been through that to implement freedom in their lives.
      Thats an interesting point.

      I know these days there is a more emphasis in schools on giving things a go, while people are still put on pedestals, the idea of giving it a shot is celebrated.

      The idea of studying hard, to get a good job and get a good salary know has been turned on his head, most of the massive entrepreneurs out there I really look up to failed as school and were pretty mediocre as the whole studying thing, focusing instead on entrepreneurship and thinking outside the square.

      Its funny how trained we are to winning or being in the Gold, silver or bronze position, I think that I learn a lot from some of the people I see at the olympics or paralyimpcs that give it a crack, the story behind participating and how they have got to where they are.
  • Profile picture of the author Gambino
    They're not.

    Why is everyone starting such generic threads now-a-days?
    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by Gambino View Post

      They're not.

      Why is everyone starting such generic threads now-a-days?
      It's what's on my mind, hopefully that's not a crime on here?

  • Profile picture of the author snginc
  • Profile picture of the author Susan Frey
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    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by Susan Frey View Post

      The world doesn't view failure favourably. It has a label attached to it. "Loser". Nobody likes to be labelled a loser. In this day of social media it's even worse - your "failure" can be broadcast by others to the world. There's no keeping things quiet everybody knows your business.
      A bit off track but over in Australia they have TV shows called the Biggest Loser. It kind of sucks that people who are overweight go onto this show and portrayed as failures and losers... pretty stupid really that this is ok.
  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Whys everyone so afraid of failing?
    If you ain't first you're last. - Reese Bobby

    (See you when your grown up...)







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  • Profile picture of the author MeelisM
    I will fail and fail again until i succeed.
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  • Profile picture of the author NateOlsen
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  • Profile picture of the author Princess Balestra
    Thing about failure is, its efficacy as a transformative quality depends on yieldingnessa rightness.

    You got absolutes, an' you goof out bad, then you gonna be default toast. Failure is doom, no other option.

    Constructive failure depends on we are gowin' sumplace, I guess.

    It invites us to imagine sumthin' beyond the seemingly incontrovertible.

    Tella, I goofed out so bad today at sum real simple sh*t.

    An' when I balanced out alla my frustratoemojis against alla the crap I dun, I figured I got sum useful intel, inspitea alla the feelbadfactor an' lousy results.

    Got more twang now in my yardstick, more fluid measurea what is gowin' down.

    I guess failure is kinda inevitable cos there is no single ultimate solution set in stone for every person an' evry problem.

    Ha!

    Monday tomorrow, so I am gonna endeavor to QUADROOPLE my opportoonity to fail by bustin' out on sum real entreprenoorial schwango.

    Push at the boundaries, fall down dead, rise up again an' push sum more — I guess that is what happens whenya got no feara failure.

    Jus' gotta hope what you got on offer is what evryone wants outta their own steps forward, I guess.
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  • Profile picture of the author KobeHendrix
    Some people just don't know how to make the best situation out of a bad situation. You always have to remain focused to move forward.
  • Profile picture of the author Wayne Equity
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  • Profile picture of the author tecmaestro
    I have always seen people who failed many times are now the most successful than others who were consistently succeeded every time.

    Failure teaches us a lot and people would never do the same mistake. Failure plays an important role behind every successful thing.
    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by tecmaestro View Post

      I have always seen people who failed many times are now the most successful than others who were consistently succeeded every time.

      Failure teaches us a lot and people would never do the same mistake. Failure plays an important role behind every successful thing.
      It's true right.

      The people that have the guts to fail again and again are the ones that seem to make it big.

      The whole idea of brushing yourself off and trying again is enormously powerful.

      If we all set out thinking that we could only do something to win is pretty ridiculous. I'd rather try something and fail then not do it at all.
  • Profile picture of the author LinkingTribes
    Everyone is afraid of failure. People always plan a win-win situation and never prepare for the failure and that makes people afraid of failure.
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  • Profile picture of the author Charlie Ashton
    Because they don't feel comfortable giving a stake to the new.

    They don't feel the oomph to make a smashing success and feel cozy in their comfort zone.

    This is an epidemic!

    It might have caught up on you and you don't realize it happening already.

    What must one do?

    Program the mind for success, stealthily, using hypnosis.

    'Nough said.
  • Profile picture of the author Ergonomics
    Failing isn't always as simple as simply failing. The manner at which you fail can be embarrassing, painful, what-have-you; it might even push you back, farther than where you started. Failing comes with consequences, and I don't think we are all normally and naturally ready to face these consequences. Failure could mean the loss of money, property, and even, people. It's natural to fear it, what isn't natural is to dwell on it. The only way to cushion ourselves from a failure is to change our mindset, to see the good in the bad, and to learn from our mistakes. Unfortunately, the next time you start again, you might not have the opportunities you had the first time around, so things could get harder for you.

    I don't usually preach the "failing is good" motto, what I try to teach, instead, is adaptability.
    • Profile picture of the author TeaCozy
      Originally Posted by Ergonomics View Post

      Failing isn't always as simple as simply failing. The manner at which you fail can be embarrassing, painful, what-have-you; it might even push you back, farther than where you started. Failing comes with consequences, and I don't think we are all normally and naturally ready to face these consequences. Failure could mean the loss of money, property, and even, people. It's natural to fear it, what isn't natural is to dwell on it. The only way to cushion ourselves from a failure is to change our mindset, to see the good in the bad, and to learn from our mistakes. Unfortunately, the next time you start again, you might not have the opportunities you had the first time around, so things could get harder for you.

      I don't usually preach the "failing is good" motto, what I try to teach, instead, is adaptability.
      Adaptability

      adjective
      1.
      capable of being adapted.
      2.
      able to adjust oneself readily to different conditions:

      Adaptability (Latin: adaptō "fit to, adjust") is a feature of a system or of a process. This word has been put to use as a specialised term in different disciplines and in business operations.

      This works and I understand your point and failing not only teaches adaptability but also resilience.

      While you may not think that failure is good it's an important point to realise you can pick yourself up from failure and create situations and a future that is superior to what you were doing before.

      On the whole failure in business is good and we can learn plenty for this.

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