Take Action – How to Overcome Fear

Why is it that we often wait for the perfect answer or direction before we take action or make a decision? Although it is important to educate ourselves and analyze various opportunities, this can act as a crutch and cause us to stay stagnant. It could be something big, like our career, or something as small as what to have for lunch. No matter how hard we try, we will never be able to see what the future holds based on the decision we make in the present. We like to wait for the answer to come to us in order to protect ourselves from disappointment or failure (or a bad sandwich). If we consistently do this, we are actually creating trouble for our future selves.

When we watch tv later than we know we should be, we justify it by saying “That is morning me’s problem.” Then, the very tired morning you will think, “If only I would have taken action last night and gone to bed..” We love the feeling of instant gratification and are annoyed by the idea of delayed gratification. Why do you think there is always a new perfect quick-fix diet? Having things in the here and now is way more appealing than having to put in consistent hard work. Here are some reasons people fail to take action, starting with fear.

Fear = Lack of Action

1) No Guarantee

We are afraid of things that are not guaranteed to us. We want to know that something is going to work before we take the leap. If you are parachuting out of a plane, you better be guaranteed a safe landing. But, if you are trying to decide what workout plan to start, it’s not something that needs to be delayed until a guarantee is given. Gather some data, decided what appeals to you, then go for it!

2) Social Exclusion

We fear what people will say about us behind closed doors. The fear of being an outcast or people talking about us negatively is one of the biggest reasons we fail to take action. Don’t let negative emotions or actions dictate you taking steps forward that will make your life better.

3) Overanalyzing

We fear that we are making the wrong decision, which sometimes prevents us from deciding at all. Paralysis by over-analysis. We become frozen in fear of making the wrong decision. While we need to use our knowledge and analyze things, we cannot let it prevent us from deciding at all. Often the wrong decisions will still give us great learning opportunities. We have to make sure to look at them that way – as learning opportunities, not chances to fail. If you are continually looking for opportunities to learn and grow, you will begin to notice how many different chances you have.


We fear failure.

Know fear. Know what it is, know how it makes you feel. Fear is a normal part of life. We must begin to understand the fears we have, especially if we want to start to live life the way it was intended to be lived (full of failure and success). If you were at the zoo and someone dared you to jump into a lion enclosure, you should feel some fear (and you should listen to that fear!) If, however, you feel fear over starting a new job, you may want to question that fear. Am I afraid of starting this job because there is a chance I might die like if I jumped into a lion enclosure? Most likely that’s not the case. This is why it is important to “Know Fear” (understand your fear) and not necessarily “No Fear” (expect not to have any).

How to Take Action

1) Educate Yourself

Learn as much as you can about the thing you are pursuing. Not to the extent that you think it will take all risk out of it or enable you to read the future and prevent failures. Do your due diligence and mitigate the risk as much as you can.

2) Look for Proof

When I look for an Airbnb, I make sure to look for the place with the most reviews and as close to a 5-star rating as I can get. Taking this step provides me the proof and builds trust in my mind that I should take action and rent it.

3) Be Okay with Failing

If we began to think of failing as learning opportunities and learned to take more educated risks, we would see a lot of people living better lives. The ones that build a tolerance to “failure” are the ones that will excel and surpass those around them who consistently let the fear of failure hold them back. Failure is a fantastic teacher.

4) Start today

Take action on the book you just read. Take action on your fitness and nutrition. Take action and pursue that job you have always dreamed of having. Take action and ask out that pretty girl you’ve been chatting with. You can’t get anywhere without moving your feet. Take action on something today, and see how far it can take you in a year, five years, or your lifetime. Build your tolerance to failure and don’t let it steal your ability to find joy in life.

If you’ve been looking for a sign to take action with your fitness journey, this is it! Take action today and schedule your Free Fitness Consult.

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