Overcoming Fear in Business

Ruth Rau

Are you stuck in a rut in your business?

Do you avoid the things you know you need to do because of a general feeling of dread?

Are you paralyzed by fear?

How can you move past the stuck and the fear to get stuff done? 


The answer seems counter-intuitive: Give in to your fears.

What I mean is, gyrate the fear. Move it around, look at it up close. Fear is a natural brain response designed to keep us "safe" and to our brains, things that are familiar feel safe (familiar income level, familiar risk levels, familiar experiences, etc).

So, lean into your fear. Take a moment outside of your head and ask your fear "what is the worst that happens if I fail?" and then take a few moments to fall into the rabbit hole of what ifs. Go as far down as you can. Then do the same for "what is the worst that happens if I succeed?" and fall down that rabbit hole. When you get your two absolute worst case scenarios, you can ask yourself "is that true?"


What's the worst that happens if you fail? Go there.

For me, the worst that can happen if I fail is that we spend all of our money on a failed idea, we lose our house and we're left begging on the street. It's not TRUE, but that's my fear. IF all of that happened, we would not be begging on the street. We would lean on extended family and they would help us out. It wouldn't be comfortable, it would be embarrassing, but there are people out there in the world who love us and will help us. So I tell my fear that. "thanks for keeping me safe, but we've got a whole network of people around us who won't let us go homeless and hungry no matter how badly we fail”

 depressing death GIF

(the butterfly of fear..... usually found tying up unsuspecting business owners' stomachs in knots.)

What's the worst that happens if you succeed?  Go there.

The worst that can happen if I succeed is that the business grows to the point that I have no more free time and my family will suffer and my kids will grow up with all kinds of hangups because their mother will have chosen business and money over love.  Who in the world would want to succeed at that price?  And it’s not TRUE.  A successful business with more money will enable me to hire more people which will give me more free time to spend with my kids.  So then I tell my fear “thanks for keeping me safe, but a successful business will give me more time with my kids.”

It doesn’t make it go away entirely, but for me, naming the fear makes it easier to move past it.

Action steps:

  • Notice the fear
  • Lean into the fear
  • Name the fear
  • Ask “is it true”
  • Talk to your fear (teach it why the fear is not true)
  • Thank your fear
  • Do the thing you've been avoiding




You don’t have to get rid of your Fear in business to do the thing anyway.  Doing it scared is one of my favorite business tactics.  (doing it right now as I publish this post)


What is at the core of your fear in your business? How do you move past it?

It’s important to note that you don’t have to face your fears in business by yourself. If you need a guide to help you navigate these woowoo waters of the mind, whether you hire me or someone else, it’s okay to ask for help.

If you want extra help:


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