11 Fear Traps to Avoid When Creating Business


Be afraid, be very afraid… when trying something new. This is how your brain thinks naturally, due to survival mechanisms. Now add on top of that, a global pandemic, job insecurity, a changing economy and small businesses failing. All of these are just a few sources of stress we face in 2021.  

It’s no wonder a common theme coming up in coaching conversations I’ve had lately is fear. Here are just a few examples:

  • “Fear is holding me back.”
  • “I’m scared of the overhead of a business.”
  • “I’m afraid to say it out loud.”
  • “I’m not feeling confident.”
  • “I’m afraid I’ll fail.”

I wonder, when we look back at 2021 will it be known as the “year of fear?”

Not if I can help it! As Winston Churchill said, “Fear is a reaction. Courage is a decision.”

We have a choice right now. We can decide to lean into courage.

Now, it isn’t easy. It’s no small feat. But if we decide with conviction to go forth and conquer our fears, we can take back what we can control and move from fear to courage.

When I created the 8 C’s of Enduring Power model to help leaders build their level of influence, I knew Choice would be one of those C’s. Choice is about becoming a master of decision making. As business owners, or leaders of any kind, we have many decisions to make, and we can’t afford to second guess ourselves. Moving forward boldly is what makes us influential

We need to evaluate, decide, get others on board with our vision and create momentum forward. That takes Courage. (Another of the 8 C’s).

According to Joseph Bikart in his book, The Art of Decision Making, fear comes in two categories: 1) Fear of the choices we make and 2) Fear of the consequences of those choices. 

Fear of our choices include:

  • Rejecting a better plan – by making a choice we fear losing out
  • Fear of choosing the wrong option – wanting to avoid being “wrong” 

Fear of the consequences of choices include:

  • Fear of Failure – may be fear of insufficiency. This is a big one, so we must accept risk as key point of decision making and recognize desire and chaos work together.
  • Fear of Heights – what if it works and I’m successful
  • Fear of Identification – fear of not being recognized
  • Fear of Selfishness – fear of upsetting others

Conflict in our own psyche, such as that with fear, is one of our major conflicts in life. Becoming aware of these fears is what will help us move beyond them. The author points out 11 life traps of fear that hold us back and says to avoid them, we must “expand our consciousness.” (Which, of course, is what happens in coaching). 

THE 11 Fear TRAPS:

  1. Abandonment – you feel you’ll be left
  2. Mistrust – fear of abuse/mistreatment
  3. Emotional Deprivation – fear you’ll never obtain the love you need
  4. Dependence – fear you’ll be unable to keep going without someone looking after you
  5. Defectiveness – feel something is seriously wrong with you
  6. Social Exclusion – feel like an outsider
  7. Failure – based on previous track record
  8. Entitlement – feel you are owed something
  9. Subjugation – fear being controlled by other people
  10. Vulnerability – fear something terrible will likely happen to you
  11. Unrelenting Standards – feel you must push yourself constantly

Now, think about your right now, then read through the fears above again. Which one stands out for you? What with you regarding what may be standing in your way?

Moving past these fears is what is going to create momentum for success. Clients tell me that raising their conscious awareness is one of the stand-out benefits they get from my coaching.

Speaking of success, in 1940, Albert E. N. Gray, an executive from the Prudential Insurance Company coined the phrase, “the common denominator of success.” He pointed out that: “the secret of success lies in forming the habit of doing things that failures don't like to do…”  

When we don’t like to do things, it can usually be traced back to a fear.   

If you’re reaching for your next level, you’ve got to be willing to be weird. Because as Gray explained: “success is something which is achieved by a minority of people and is therefore unnatural and not to be achieved by following our natural likes and dislikes.”

You can choose to get a FREE jump start toward your next level of success right now. Will you decide with courage to choose it? Check out the benefits of the Influence Audit, and apply here.    

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