The dread of coming up short

The fear of failure is very real for many people. Confronting one’s shortcomings can be the most challenging task of all. Have you ever been so disheartened by a previous setback that you decided to give up trying altogether? Or, has that fear ever led you to sabotage your efforts to prevent yourself from experiencing setbacks that are more significant and excruciating?

The fear of falling short of our goals can paralyze us. As a result of this fear, we give up trying and do absolutely nothing, which prevents us from making any progress. But if we give in to our anxiety and let it rule our behavior, it will only worsen the situation. We risk missing out on the more significant opportunities that are awaiting us.

Conquering one’s fears

If you try to avoid facing your fear instead of overcoming it, it will never disappear. Inevitably, you will become worn out, and before you know it, the dread will have grown more pervasive in your life and appear to be more terrifying to you. William Jennings Bryan put it best when he said that facing your fears head-on is the best way to build up self-confidence.

Some individuals find that looking at themselves in the mirror and talking positively about their abilities helps boost their confidence and keep their self-esteem at a healthy level. They may do this in preparation for a speech or a job interview. However, that is not the end of the story. You will miss out on the opportunity to experience that well of self-confidence on a deeper level if the person you are afraid of does not face their fear. Face-to-face interaction with the object of one’s irrational dread is one of the most effective ways to build self-confidence. Remember that fear is an unhelpful interpretation, much like the memory of past experiences that may not necessarily add up to what you are currently experiencing.



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