Fear of Failure: How to Stop the Thief of Time

By Trinity T.

If you don’t know already, time is the most valuable resource. The fact that you only get one life to accomplish everything you want is daunting and honestly, it’s a bit unfair. But who are we to complain? We’ve been given a chance to take part in this wonderful life and that in itself is the greatest blessing of all. So, how do we stop our time from passing us by?

Fortunately, the thief of time isn’t some supernatural creature roaming around devouring our time. We ourselves have created this thief. That thief is procrastination! And since we created it, we can easily destroy it from our lives.

First, let’s look at what causes procrastination. You may think it’s just laziness. But usually, it’s fear. The fear of not living up to expectations, the fear of messing up on the task ahead, the fear of failure. That’s what makes us postpone things. I’ve seen this in my writing. I’m not a lazy writer, I’m just a scared one. I don’t know about you. But for me, knowing that I’m scared- in other words a coward- is worse than being called lazy.

As someone who has wrestled (and still does) with this fear, I’ve been on a quest to find a solution, and here are a few things I’ve found to help.

  1. Change how you look at failure.

In our society, failure often carries a negative flavor. It’s almost like our failures define our worth. It’s even considered shameful. But what if we looked at failure from a different perspective? What if we called it what it really is – a learning experience? Because that’s what our failures are, lessons. I read somewhere that after trying 9,999 times to invent the light bulb, someone asked Thomas Edison, “Are you going to fail 10000 times?” His answer was, “I haven’t failed, I’ve just learned another way not to invent the light bulb!” BAM! Imagine if he had let his previous mistakes stop him from trying again. I mean, someone else probably would have found a way to invent the light bulb. And Edison would be just another dreamer who failed to make his dream come true. He may have been scared. But he went for it anyway, believing that he could do better this time because of his previous lessons. Which leads me to point number two…

  1. Change your beliefs.

As the saying goes, “Whether you believe you can or can’t, you’re right!” I know that whatever you believe in your soul will manifest in your life. Okay, so it’s not always guaranteed that believing in success makes you successful. But it’s totally guaranteed that having positive beliefs will make it easier for you to face your fears and thus give you a better chance to succeed. I’m also a Christian and I’ve seen it in the Bible where people just had to have faith that everything would be alright. It wasn’t easy for them, but because they took that step of faith, we still talk about them today. Believing is the first step to achieving your dreams. And after you’ve changed your beliefs…

  1. Just do it!

It’s as simple as that. If you find something intimidating, instead of sitting in a corner and dreading it, just go dive head-first into it and see what happens. I’ve found that usually, the things we fear to do aren’t that difficult. And even when they are, there’s always a solution. Once you start working on it, you’ll find that it starts flowing – almost naturally.

So there’s that. I challenge you to seize the moment, alter your perception of failure, transform your beliefs, and take courageous action. Go out and pursue your dreams and enjoy every moment of it.

Trinity, 16, has been homeschooling for almost four years. She lives in Uganda and is passionate about God, family, music, and writing. She hopes to use her writing to serve God and help other people.

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