Have you started your blog yet? If you haven't, what's holding you back?
Are you afraid of putting yourself out there? Afraid of failing?
Hey I get it. Those were my two biggest fears when I first started.
I blogged anonymously for 14 years, afraid of putting myself out there for fear of what others would think.
It was only after receiving so much positive feedback that I came "out of hiding" last year.
Here's what I was afraid of:
I could go on for days. Even though these fears sound silly now writing them out, back then I was paralyzed by these fears.
But instead of letting my fears get the best of me, I pushed through and it's really paid off.
Pushing through is what I now do every time I'm afraid of something blogging or business-related.
This pattern of "fear > do it anyway > growth" started happening so frequently I began to realize that fears are just a clue I'm on the verge of doing something big.
What are you afraid of? What are your fears?
Some are afraid of failure, others are afraid of criticism. But most are afraid of both.
So what can you do about it?
You have two choices:
The easy way out is to do nothing and stay safe.
The other option is to muster up the courage to try something new.
"The fear of staying the same has to be bigger than the fear of doing something new."
Everybody was afraid at first
Nobody starts a blog without being afraid. Everyone starts in the same the exact same spot: Zero traffic, zero audience, and tons of fear.
It's easy to get discouraged when you see so many others who have achieved success. But realize that they all started from zero - and most of them without the tools and resources you now have available.
Failures are just lessons
A powerful way to is to frame your mistakes as learning opportunities. This way when you fail (and failure is inevitable), you learn from it and keep getting better.
My failures now are embraced and seen as part of the journey. I literally look forward to them. Going into trying something new I factor in the element of failure. It's like I'm saying I expect to fail 5 times before getting it right. So i might as well try 5 times as quickly as possible.
"If you keep doing what you've always done, you'll keep getting what you've always gotten."
Haters are the fuel to your success
Don't be surprised if you find people question your choice to start a blog.
If you even dare take the fast lane or a shortcut to prosperity, rest assured you'll have an army of small-minded people criticize you for it.
Without fail, whenever you try something new you're going to have your fair share of doubters (also known as haters).
But what they actually hate is that you're brave enough to try something new - and they're not.
It takes guts to start a blog, especially when you have a spouse who is skeptical, friends who don't understand, and haters rooting for you to fail.
Let's use this, all of this, as motivation and fuel for your success.
Overcoming the fear of doing something different
Since we're born we have a neat plan that's laid out for us.
You know that plan. The one where you go to school, rack up tons of debt, graduate, work a 9 to 5, get a mortgage, retire when you’re old and gray, then maybe travel (if you’re still alive by then).
The theory behind this plan is that if you follow it, nothing bad will happen to you. While this is probably true, it's also true that nothing truly good will happen to you either.
See if you follow this plan, all it will assure you of is getting a gravestone that reads: "He/She followed the plan and lived an unremarkable life".
When it's my time to go, it's my time to go. But before then, I just want to know I did something, that I impacted someone's life.
This "legacy" thing is what fuels me and is what I used to overcome the fear of standing out.
Overcoming the fear of failure
It's okay to be afraid of death, injury, isolation (or spiders, I HATE spiders!). Fears exist to keep us alive and out of danger.
But many of your fears are irrational, such as the fear of failure.
I'm no expert, but fear of failure has to do with the fear of being shunned from your tribe. And for the history of mankind, being a part of a tribe was integral to survival itself.
Irrational or not, these fears exist (at least in our brains). So what can do we do about them?
How about harnessing their power for good.
For me, it was that very fear of failure that led me to take this blogging thing seriously.
I didn't want to fail so bad I went all-in and gave it everything I had.
Falling in love with failure
I do a lot of conversion rate optimization (CRO), which is essentially a process of failing a lot, repeatedly, until finally arriving at the right answer.
And that's really what business is, to bounce from failure to failure, and hopefully have a few wins in between.
A funny thing happens when you fail as much as I have. You learn to fall in love with the process of failing. I now welcome it with open arms. Failure is the only way I know how to get better.
When you think of failures as teachable moments, they become less scary.
Feel the fear, and do it anyway
One more note about fear. When I say I've overcome these fears, that isn't quite true. I still have those fears. The only difference is I can identify them as being irrational and continue pushing through.
This understanding of fear is explored deeper in Susan Jeffers book Feel the Fear... and Do It Anyway.
But I can tell you from personal experience that once you push through that fear, the rewards are amazing!
When you overcome your fears, you gain confidence you never thought you had. I am not the same person I was when I started blogging. It's not the money that has changed me, it's the confidence in knowing I stared fear right in the face and did it anyway.
I still deal with blogging-related fears on a daily basis. I'm actually afraid as I'm writing this. But I've since learned that being afraid of something business-related is a clue I'm on the verge of leveling up.
Write out the worst-case scenario
List your fears and the worst-case scenario for each.
Notice that's missing? There's no violence, death, or anything major. It's really just feelings.
Now compare these worst-case scenarios with the best-case scenarios. Ever think about those? Probably not as much as the fears.
Flip the switch and list your BEST-case scenario.
Getting out of the 9-to-5 rat race, becoming your own boss, making six-figures, living the laptop lifestyle, travel the world, etc.
Is the risk of the worst-case scenario worth the benefit of the best-case scenario?
For me the answer was HELL YES and it's why I decided to go all-in on this blogging thing.
You are not alone in this journey
Trying something new is scary, but especially so when you're doing it all alone. This is precisely why each lesson in Six-Figure Bloggers Blueprint has a question/comment box if you need any help. I want to make sure you know you are not alone in this.
Six-Figure Bloggers Blueprint makes the blogging journey less overwhelming by guiding you through the process, step-by-step. More importantly, it will eliminate hours of wasted time chasing countless rabbit-holes that lead nowhere, which you'll undoubtedly end up in if you do this on your own.
Ready to get started? If you have any questions about the eCourse, let me know in the comments below. I'm here to help.
If you're ready to take that first step, here are some resources to help you get started:
- Six-Figure Bloggers Blueprint eCourse