When you are first starting out it is damn hard, whether it is sports, a new hobby, job or blogging finding your feet is not easy.
Every time you start something new you are putting yourself into the unknown, stepping outside of your comfort-zone. This is how you grow as a person and develop new skills but most people have a fear of the unknown.
The fear of the unknown is something that is easily overcome if you follow these steps.
- Identify your goals
- The steps to get there and at each stage do the following:
- Identify your fears
- Deduce the reality of your fears and the actual probability of them ocuring
- And finally work out how you can over-come or adapt to these events if they do happen.
- Bonus!!! You can just live in the moment and allow yourself to make mistakes and learn from them.
So let’s break this down.
Identifying your goals
First you need to know what you want to achieve when you start something new. This could be earning more money, finding a way to fill your spare time or increasing your fitness.
The steps to get there
This could be very simple if you are wanting to start a new hobby, you do a little research or talk to someone you know who already does that hobby and learn from there. But if it is something more complicated such as getting a new job or starting a blog then it can get more complicated.
For example starting a blog you have to work out how to use different sites to both publish and advertise your blog, what to write about, when to find the time to write the posts(which can take a lot longer than you think at first), then you have to fact check, spell check as well as keeping your grammar in order and try not to just ramble on and on.
you need to think of as many moves ahead as you possibly, or realistically can. For example you don’t need to think 30 moves ahead for what to do if your favourite take-a-way is closed tonight when you phone but you might if you are thinking of doing a University course to get a better job.
Identifying your fears
There are two types of fears that we have to deal with when starting something new, rational and irrational.
The first is where you are scared of something that could happen for example, spending all your money on training and then not being able to get a job with that training. In this situation you have to weigh the chance of getting a job with how much it means to you to get a new, better job.
The second type of fear, irrational, can be more complicated and sometimes even more damage. For example if you wanted to start doing a blog many people might think that their friends and family will laugh at them and the fear of ridicule is one of the most potent factor in modern day decision making and can cause people to lose their ambition and ultimately be less happy than they could be.
Deducing the reality of your fears:
This is how we decide if our fears are irrational or rational, being afraid of spiders is irrational because the chances of one actually harming you are incredibly small but on the other hand a fear of getting into a large amount of debt can be rational because in this day and age many people are willing to take loans to get what they want before they can afford it and then have to pay more money than they would have if they had waited for a few more pay days. You need to start thinking a few moves ahead than you used to.
Let me explain, If you normally think “I’ll go to the shop” but when you get there it is closed, what do you do. If you hadn’t though for a moment that it might be closed then you have to think for a minute about how you would acquire when you went there for. But if on the other hand you have thought a few moves ahead, including “if the shop is shut then what do I do” on the way to the shop then you wouldn’t get stressed if it is closed.
How to overcome your fears:
In the cold light of day fear tends to dissipate because our real fear is that of the unknown, for example there are many accounts of soldiers in Afghanistan who actually wanted a fire-fight to start because the fear of not knowing when the bullets would start flying was worse than the fear of the bullets flying. This is obviously an extreme example but this is our hard coded genetics at play here, this is our fight or flight survival instincts telling us that if we don’t know then fear the worse but hope for the best.
But we can trick our fight or flight instincts by rationalising our fear, by knowing when things are going wrong and already having a plan in place so that you can achieve the best possible outcome in any situation.
Of course you don’t have to follow any of these steps, you can follow some as most people do some of these anyway by habit, you can just live in the moment. If something is going to happen it will happen, type of thinking. But even better would be if you can switch between the happy go lucky world view and the clinical steps to overcoming your fears.
As with anything it is a balancing act, don’t be afraid to let me know what you think below and have a good day.