Failure is something we all experience and it’s hard to face due to the pain and fear it can cause deep within us. Failure is defined by dictionary.com as the lack of success or the omission of an expected or required action.
DID YOU KNOW?
Some people have fear of failure so badly that there is a medical term for it? Atychiphobia is the fear of failure.
Fear of failure could be linked to many different causes. For instance, having critical or unsupportive parents is one.
As a child, I often heard, from my father- I was a failure, a let down, and that I only caused more problems for him. He literally told me I had been nothing but a disappointment to him.
It’s important to understand– I wasn’t an out of control teen, I wasn’t out repeatedly breaking rules, and I didn’t dare talk back to him. I was in NO WAY perfect, but he was miserable and wanted everyone else to be also.
To be clear, there is never a good reason to speak to your children or anyone else in such a manner. We all have failures in our life- moments we are not proud of- mistakes we have made- but we are NOT defined by these moments.
Just as many children do, I wanted more than anything to make dad proud- to hear some form of approval for all I had endured. As a child and even in to my adult years– I strived over and over to “make my father proud of me.”
It was only about two years ago that I finally realized- it wasn’t me- it was him. He would never be proud of me- never acknowledge how hard I had worked or how far I have come despite all odds against me. He was miserable.
This formed a deep root of fear of failure and lack of self-worth within me. Something I still struggle with today.
It’s hard for me to get started on something new. A new idea– new career path– new relationships– basically, new anything. I get intense anxiety about being around new people or in a new environment. To the point, that I use to avoid it all together.
Things really began to change for me when I started soul searching and trying to find out WHY I am always fearful. As I began to dig and research, I found that it was likely due to the abuse and constant negative talk from my father. Which then developed into full blown negative self-talk.
Change starts within You!
So what do we do to overcome this?
First, realize this is not something that will just magically go away overnight. I have been working at breaking these chains for two years. Everyday gets better and closer to the ultimate goal of living a FEARLESS life.
4 things I found to help me overcome my fear of failure:
- Pray. Anytime you are feeling fearful, stop and pray. Ask God to break the chains of fear over your life. Ask God to give you courage, strength, and clarity. Ask Him to remind you that you are His and He has NOT given us a spirit of fear, but one of power, love, and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
- Find the benefits of past failures. Appreciate the growth that comes with failure.
- Change the way you view the circumstance. When failure is possible, view it as a challenge.
- Eliminate bad self-talk. Treat yourself kindly when you experience failure.
Failing at something is a stepping stone to success.
I have missed over 9000 shots in my career. I have lost almost 300 games, 26 times I was trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life, and that is why I succeed.“Michael Jordan
We need to learn to embrace the concept of doing it afraid. Often times, our biggest successes come from something we were afraid to do in the beginning. The key is to do it even if you are feeling fearful.
The Bible tells us that God has not given us a spirit of fear. It does NOT say we won’t feel fear. It is our choice on how to react, when the spirit’s of Satan creep into our inner thoughts, causing us to feel fearful; we must kick him out!
Stop the downward spiral of Satan’s lies and begin to declare God’s word over yourself and the situation.
2 Timothy 1:7 is a great weapon against fear.
There is truly nothing to fear, except for fear itself.
Take a moment to think of something you have felt compelled to do or even wanted to do but ultimately didn’t because of fear of failure or fear of any kind.
Have you always wanted to ride a roller coaster, but you’re afraid of heights? Maybe you want to sing karaoke, but are afraid to be in front of people. Is there somewhere you want to go, but you’re afraid to fly? Perhaps, it’s something most might think is simple, like visiting a local church for the first time, but you’re afraid of what people may think. Do you want to start a new business– new hobby– new relationship?
Do you have it? Good!
Write it down. Seriously, do it!
Now, on the same paper, write why you haven’t done it yet. The associated fear– confess to yourself and God the fear(s) that has prevented you from doing what you wrote.
Next, I want you to do some research in the Bible for yourself. This can easily be done on a Bible App. or at biblegateway.com. Write down one or more scriptures to declare over that fear.
I recommend memorizing 2 Timothy 1:7, so that you can easily access this scriptural weapon to declare when Satan attempts to attack you with any form of fear.
I challenge you today to complete the activity above (if you haven’t already) and be courageous, go do whatever it is you wrote down.
Don’t give up on anything and don’t let Satan use his lies to keep you bound in fear.
My prayer for you
Thank you for Your word. I pray that you use this blog article on fear of failure to touch each person that reads it. Give them understanding and clarity. Help them to remember your promises and to declare Your Word, when they begin to feel fearful. Open their hearts and minds as they research and complete the activity above. God, I pray that you would expose their fears to themselves and give them the scripture and strength to overcome each one. Your Word says we can do ALL things through You who gives us strength! In Jesus mighty name I pray.