Have you ever felt nervous before a meeting or event?
Have you ever worried over that upcoming social occasion and secretly wanted to just stay home?
Have you ever secretly felt unqualified to lead?
When I feel worried or nervous about a situation, I use this little Fierce Faith mantra to keep me on track.
I developed this mantra because when I feel fear getting the best of me, I tend to want to run and hide, put on my mask, bite the heads off of the people I love, and sometimes just flat-out quit. Let me explain.
Don’t let the fear of failure keep you from showing up.
When we struggle with the fear of failure, the idea of hiding at home under the covers can sound really good. Sometimes half the battle really is simply showing up.
Don’t let your fear of failure keep you from being who you are.
My defense mechanism when I feel nervous around others has always been to look around, see what everyone else is doing, and make like a chameleon to fit in. If I feel certain I am going to fail as my true self, my logic has always been, why not be someone else, or worse yet, everyone else.
We need to live in the confidence that we are fearfully, wonderfully, and purposefully made just as we are.
To this day, though, when I feel tempted to try to make myself more like someone else to avoid that fear of failure, I tell myself, Be real, Alli. Be real.
Don’t let the fear of failure cause you to treat others badly.
For me this is a reminder not to let my own fear or worry cause me to be short-tempered with others. My goal is to love and lead others well, even when I’m a mess inside.
When I’m tempted to treat others badly, I quietly repeat my battle-plan mantra: “Show up, be real, love others, don’t quit.”
Don’t let the fear of failure, or anything else for that matter, cause you to quit. We can only truly fail when we quit trying.
I find the temptation to quit occurs most often when I am in the middle of a project or job, fearing I will fail, and I decide that quitting (and being labeled a quitter) is so much better than failing (and being labeled a failure).
Like I said, fear is not rational and does not cause us to think clearly.
Have you ever said to yourself:
- I didn’t know it was going to be this hard.
- I can’t do this anymore.
- I’m not good enough.
- What was I thinking when I thought I could do this?
You are in pretty good company. It’s all normal. We all struggle with the same thoughts as leaders. The secret is to strengthen yourself not to quit.
When we remember to show up, be real, love others, and not quit, we don’t have to control anyone else or the outcome of what we do. We get to bring our best to any situation with courage and love.
The results are up to God; he just asks us to be who he called us to be, love others, and do our best. That is how we lead with confidence.