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6 Steps to Overcome Fear and Start Your Business

Fear is one of the most common dream killers. It is a major stumbling block in the path of many as they pursue their dreams, especially in business/entrepreneurship. Nonetheless, your dream to start a business is too important to be drawn back by fear or anything else.

In this article, I share six simple steps to overcome fear so that you can start your business. These are steps that I have personally used to help me start several businesses that I currently run.

1. Do it Anyway

Getting scared to start a new business is normal. But this does not change the fact that the business can only have two outcomes: failure or success! Having gathered sufficient information on the field you are intending to venture into, just get out and begin.

Start your business while you are still scared. Waiting for a moment when you are no longer afraid may never come. You don’t need to have everything figured out, just start with the basic must-haves for starting a business.

2. Get a cheerleader

It is important to find that individual who will motivate you when fear tries to choke your determination to start. Sometimes, you will need a little help to overcome fear and get the courage to launch out. And this is okay!

Personally, getting encouragement from close friends and my mentor played and still plays a great role in propelling my determination beyond the wall of fear. For you, your cheerleader could be your wife, girlfriend, close family members, or friends. It could also be a group of like-minded people who share the same dreams and passion as you do. By all means, ensure that you have a cheerleader in your circle.

3. Dissect the worst-case scenario

Sometimes, the cloud of uncertainty about the outcome of the steps you are about to take may hold you back. The ‘what-ifs’ can be crippling.

The antidote to fear that is caused by uncertainty about the outcomes of the business you are about to start is talking through what you are afraid of. So, query yourself, what is the worst that could happen if you start your business?

Here are some of the realities that you are likely to come face to face with:

a) You could fail

Failure is a possibility. But before I forget, it can be a positive thing. I have always believed and still believe that failing is part of the curriculum in the school of practical business. Failure is only a story in theoretical business within the four walls of a lecture theatre in the school of business. But in the space of real business, it is real. Therefore, the earlier you come to terms with this possibility the better for you.

b) You could lose everything

This is a possibility, but it is highly unlikely that you will lose ‘everything’. If it happens, you can always start over and give it a try once more.

Keep your focus on what is truly important: your life, your health, your loved ones, and your faith. As long as none of these is lost, you will never lose ‘everything’.

c) People may laugh at you

Yes, this is possible. Especially, if you are leaving a stable and well-paying job to start a business that has no guaranteed success.

You need to be clear on whether you are starting the business for the approval of others or to feed a longing inside of you. Do the opinions of others define you? Is the business for you or them?

To confront your fear of what people will think, you must stop comparing yourself and overcome the fear of being judged by others. Please realize and come to terms with the fact that you can never please everyone all the time.

4. Begin where you are

Stop waiting to gather all the information about the business before starting. Most of the time, only 20 percent of the information you gather will be applicable when running a real business. Having said this, just begin where you are!

Start moving forward. But be a committed learner while you are on the move. Take a class, watch a video online, and research tools to help you learn and grow.

5. Take a bite at a time

Try to note down the five things you can do to start your business. Then have these five things posted somewhere you can see them. You can tag along photos and quotes to inspire you and keep you focused. I did this in my fourth and fifth year of undergraduate studies while at the University of Nairobi, college of health sciences. I had my dream businesses scribbled on plain pieces of A4 papers and pinned on the noticeboard in my room. Well, as I pen this article, I have implemented most of what I had imagined and scribbled it down.

6. Do it for yourself

Finally, starting a business to impress anyone or even to get rich is a real set-up for frustration. Start a business because it matters to you. It is worth your time and has to be something that calls out to you day in and day out.

The journey of starting and running a business may not always be enjoyable. But if it makes you happy and gives you purpose, by all means, it’s worth it.

Therefore, overcome fear to start by letting go of the fear of what others may think.


I hope these six steps will help you overcome fear and start that business that you have been dreaming of starting. Fold your sleeves, get your hands on the plow and get going. Success is not guaranteed, but when you follow the right procedure and inject the right amount of effort, it is inevitable.




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