Why are we so afraid to try?

Making a change and trying something new is scary, but it can be scary for different reasons. 

Even when the status quo does not appeal to us anymore, even when we envision the change, we might hesitate right at the very start. Why so? Shouldn’t we be ready as soon as we create the mental picture? Not necessarily. Sometimes the trap is exactly in that mental picture. It seems so real, and we live it through in our head, so that it… becomes enough. 

Ironically, executing change might be stalled for two contrary reasons:

  • we are afraid that it might not work as we want; or
  • we are afraid that it might work as we want.

The first one is self explanatory in a sense: the fear of failure. The second one is a bit more complicated. 

When the change becomes real it has an impact. That can trigger some other shifts in our life. More than often it comes with responsibility. This is damn scary! 

What can we do about it?

First and foremost it makes sense to understand which of the two is the leading fear of yours. They could and probably will be present simultaneously, yet some of us already learned to overcome the fear of failure, but fall prey to the fear of success. However, like with any fear, the process of dealing with it starts with admitting it, inviting the fear over, if you will. 

I don’t have any magic recipe, but one: knowing what you want, what you don’t want and what you are willing (and not) to give up helps in choosing your choice. The pun is intentional. Making a choice is only the first step. Choosing your choice is what comes next. That is about going for it: no regrets, no ifs, no backing-ups.

There is a belief that there is only a few of inherent fears, such as the fear of heights or the fear of loud sounds. All the other ones are what we learned along the way. However irrespective of the origin, unlearning the fear takes a lot of effort. 

What helps to move on is just moving on, making those first steps in the right direction, despite the difficulties you face. You accept that you are scared, but you close your eyes and jump into your new future.

After all: the worst regret is to never have tried.


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