How to Overcome Fear and Failure to Achieve Your Goals This Year

It’s guest post Monday! This post is written by Tara Spenser who is currently the resident writer for workingcapital.org where she researches the most affordable business capital available. In her spare time, she enjoys blogging, swimming and being a mom. If you would like to have a post featured on my site then click here.

The new year brings with it new possibilities to finally achieve the goals you have set for yourself or the dreams you have been hanging on to year after year. Maybe you want to start your own business. Or maybe you want to write that book you’re sure will be a best-seller. Maybe you just want to live a healthier life or spend more time with your loved ones.

Whatever your dream, whatever your goal, you can make it happen. Follow these tips for overcoming your fears to make this the year that you accomplish those goals and make those dreams come true:

Make a Plan

To get where you’re going, you have to have an idea of how you’re going to get there. Identify your goals and then make a plan for how you will accomplish them. Do research about what will be required, then set realistic timelines and milestones for yourself.

Refer to your plan throughout the year to assess your progress and to make any necessary tweaks to keep yourself moving forward.

Take It One Step at a Time

You can’t expect to make $1 million this year when you only make $30,000 a year now. And you can’t expect to transform yourself from an obese couch potato into a svelte fitness model. While this goals are achievable in time, you just need to set a more realistic time frame for yourself and you have to start by taking small steps.

If you try to take on too much, too soon, you will overwhelm yourself or shortchange yourself of needed experience or developmental growth. Focus instead on taking one small step at a time toward your goal. You’ll move forward slowly and steadily, and you won’t be as likely to fall prey to failure.

Build on Your Successes

Celebrate each of your successes along the way toward achieving your goals. Each success — no matter how small — represents one step closer to realizing your dreams. By celebrating these small successes, you can build on the momentum you have created and find the enthusiasm for continuing to do the hard work needed to accomplish your goals.

With each small success, you also gain valuable insights that can help you on the rest of your journey. For each milestone, take a moment to assess what you have learned and how you can use it as you continue forward in your plan toward making your dream a reality.

Get Support

Even the best-laid plans can crumble. When they do, you need the support of family and friends to help you get through it. Whether you are feeling overwhelmed, discouraged, or apathetic about your journey, a good support system can help you to find the motivation and the strength to continue doing the work you need to do to achieve your dreams. Surround yourself with supportive friends, family members, co-workers, and mentors who are willing to help see you through your journey.

Focus on What You Have to Gain

When you are working tirelessly every day and don’t see an end in sight, you may lose your motivation to continue doing what you need to do to accomplish your goals. When this happens, instead of focusing on your daily or weekly to-do list, think about the bigger picture and focus on all that you have to gain if you accomplish what you set out to do.

You may find that just when you feel like you want to give up, you find the motivation to start again and to recommit yourself with renewed vigor.

Let this be the year that you finally achieve the goals you have held for yourself for so long. Follow these tips to help you overcome your fears and to move forward to finally find the success you want!

Questions: What goals do you want to accomplish this year? What fears are you going to need to overcome in order to have a good year?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • This is great advice! I’ve personally found that ‘Build on Your Successes’ is crucial when it comes to building momentum. When I celebrate my minor success stories I find that I eventually have big ones :)

    • Glad you enjoyed the post. I totally agree, success creates momentum that excels us forward even more. I just checked out your site and really enjoy it, I’m looking forward to connecting more. Thank you for reading the post:)

  • Tara, these are some great tips. I especially like the idea of “taking it one step at a time”. For me that principle is very valuable when it comes to language learning. If I want to be successful in taking on a new language I can’t go in with the expectation that I’ll be fluent in the first few months. But if I focus on the task at hand I’ll be there sooner than I think.

    I’m also working on a book this year and it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the task of writing so much, so it really helps me to break it up into small chunks and just “take it one step at a time.”

    • Great examples on how taking small steps will lead to accomplishment. I’m also writing a book and found the same to be true. I have to break the different sections up and remember to take small steps(one word at a time). What is your book about?

      • The book I’m working on right now is on worry and anxiety. I’m hoping to have it ready by summer and the ebook version will probably be free on my blog.

  • DS

    To have a great year I believe we need to focus on serving others. I believe that the fear we most need to overcome, is the fear of rejection. We should be more about creating and doing awesome things that truly serves those around us.

    • I totally agree! Servant leadership allows us to humble our self’s and show value to others. Thank you for adding that.

  • We’re on the same page today. I also have a post about dealing with fear @ http://www.danerickson.net

    • Sweet, Looking forward to reading that post Dan. Thank you for reading and commenting.

  • Good one. I try to remember that there is no fear in failure once we realize that only quitting represents true failure. Determination and perseverance go a long way. Thanks!

    • Wonderful thoughts Floyd. The only people who lose in life or business are the ones how quite. Thanks for sharing that.

  • Bernard Haynes

    Great steps to overcome fear to achieve your goals. I really like taking one step at a time. I have overwhelmed myself countless times trying to accomplish a big goal without small steps. It did not work. It only caused frustration and disappointment. But, when I took small, consistent steps I was able to accomplish more.

    • I relate with you, I’ve done the same thing. I have to remind myself small wins lead to bigger wins. Let’s keep taking those small steps that will lead us to a big future. Thanks for adding to the discussion.

  • One step at a time, baby steps. That’s what I keep telling myself on my journey to becoming a published author.

    I also keep telling myself to focus on the positives. When things get challenging I go over Phil 4:8 and focus on what is true, noble, just, praiseworthy and so on. It helps get me back in focus with TRUTH!

    • It’s the only mindset to have if we expect to write a book and get it published. Great passage. Thank you for reading and commenting.

  • I think there’s great wisdom in taking it one step at a time and in celebrating your successes. Building momentum slowly is an effective way to really have sustainable drive.

    • I agree, celebrating but not plateau on our successes is essential. Celebrate the wins then keep moving forward. Thank you for commenting.

  • Your advice on taking one step at a time is critical. It’s easy to get discouraged falling short of unrealistic goals. It’s a common habit to just reset that same goal as well, leading into further discouragement. Setting the proper goals to begin with will lead into a smoothly flowing achievement timeline. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Tara – Ryan

    • Great point about goals. Moving toward clear and achievable goals is important. Thanks for adding that insight.

  • I have a few goals Tara. I want to:

    Have my first eBook published and given away – I’ll have to overcome the fear no one will want it
    Increase my income by $3,000 – The fear here is that I’ll have to find creative ways to do this and I’m not sure I can
    Have a speaking gig by the end of the year – I’m terrified of public speaking

    • Those are some great goals Joe!!! You need to join Toastmasters or talk with your youth pastor and see if you can do more stuff from the stage. Before preaching my first sermon I had several times of opening the night, doing offering, doing announcements, and small things like that. I found those small steps really built my confidence to be able to preach. Looking forward to hearing you speak!

  • My goal is to become a best selling published author but more then that start a movement of people who stop settling and chase their dreams. Progress is good! Good points here.

    • Great goals Kimanzi! I know your on your way to doing both.

  • I think focusing on what you have to gain is great motivation to move forward and conquer fear Tara. If we realize the rewards of the risk, the risk becomes easier to digest.

    Also, faith in pursuing your dreams has been a critical component in my life in overcoming fear. Faith in myself, faith in things working out, faith in persistence, faith in a successful outcome.

    Couple small goals this year – one is to give more of myself (on a daily basis) and the other is to blog more often (on a weekly basis)

    Cheers!

    • Hello Vishnu,

      Seeing the reward or benefits are a great motivator to moving into out of our comfort zones toward our dreams. Faith is a huge factor.

      Great goals man. If you need help with how to write or post more please let me know.

      Thank you for adding to the conversation.

  • My goal is to learn how to make a list and follow it so I can reach the goals I set! Thanks for the encouraging post!

    • Great goal Barb. Glad the post encouraged you. Thank you for stopping by:)

  • Tara, these are great reminders! I have a long list of goals for the year. My biggest shift has been mental. Getting my mind to believe what my heart knows to be true. Great reminders.

    • Glad the posted helped. That’s an important shift to make.

  • It is so important to realize you can change your plan as you go. I’ve already accomplished a couple of my bigger goals for this year (speaking gig and two guest posts by end of March) and because of that have set more aggressive goals for the rest of the year. I actually think it is good sometimes to get 90% of the way there because you shot way too high…versus setting lower goals and hitting 100%.

    • Great points man. Looking forward to seeing what you do the rest of the year! It’s going to be good and big.

  • Great post, Tara, and all steps I needed to hear. I especially like the 2nd step. Too often i look at the big picture and get overwhelmed. I’m much better off when I focus on one step at a time.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the post Barb. Thank you for taking the time to read and share:)