3 Reasons Why You Should Do Things That Scare You
A few years ago, I started a new job that changed my life. I was hired for a commission sales position in the lingerie department of a well-known retailer. As excited as I was at first, my excitement quickly gave way to apprehension and fear when I soon realized what I had accepted. Negative thoughts flooded my mind. You’re not qualified enough. You’ve never worked in commission sales. You don’t have enough experience. You’re setting yourself up to fail.
Time seemed to flew by as I anxiously counted down the days. I kept telling myself I could quit if I wasn’t happy and find something else that I felt more prepared and ready for. I didn’t have to stay there for more than six months. I concocted back up plans for my back up plans. Whether it was out of insecurity or out of fear, I was looking for an escape and hadn’t even started yet.
Day 1 came before I knew it. Suddenly, I was meeting new co-workers and adapting to a new work environment. As scary as the new job was, I stuck with it. 8 hours a day, 5 days a week I battled anxiety and introversion. I wanted nothing more than to fall back into the comfort of my old job. During this time, days turned into weeks and weeks turned into months. Before long, three months had passed.
One day, three months in, I had an epiphany.
I realized I needed to give into my fear. Up until that point, I felt uneasy and uncomfortable in my new role. I felt like I wasn’t supposed to be there, like I was under qualified for the position and the duties and expectations that came with it. I was afraid I was an imposter. I was unsure, uncomfortable, and anxious — but I was growing. Each day, I soaked up as much product knowledge as I could. I took chances and challenged my fears. I learned how to fit bras and figure out sizing. I even started to enjoy many parts of it!
As I grew into my new role, I started to change. I walked into work every day, afraid, and walked out every night relieved and happy that I had made it through another day. The challenge terrified me, but the success was real and accepting that I was afraid was working. I was making things happen and feeling more and more like I belonged. My goals finally felt tangible. As a result of my newfound confidence and determination, I started to kick butt in sales. If you told me on the 1st day that I would become a top seller at the company, I never would have believed you.
Best of all, the confidence that I felt from conquering my fears manifested in other areas. I overcame my fear of talking to people and communication in almost every area- friendships, relationships, networking- started to feel more effortless and natural. My quality of life improved dramatically. Looking back, I owe a great deal of my personal and professional success to that opportunity.
Why am I sharing this story with you today?
We all have things we’re afraid of.
It could be a fear of starting a new job, meeting new people, dating, or moving to a new city, among many others.
One thing I’ve learned is that no matter how scared you are, you can’t let fear hold you back from moving forward.
It’s ok if you don’t have any idea how to overcome your fear of reaching a goal, making a dream a reality, making a tough decision, or embracing your imperfections. Sometimes you have to do things scared, uncertain, or afraid. You may have to embrace discomfort and change in order to move forward and accomplish what matters most to you.
There are many benefits to overcoming fears. Here are my 3 favorite reasons why you should challenge yourself to do things that scare you:
1. You get to experience new opportunities.
By embracing the unknown, you open yourself up to new opportunities. If dating scares you, just remember that you could meet the love of your life if you take that risk!
2. You become in control of your fear.
The only way to conquer your fears is by facing them. More often than not, the things that scare you turn out to not be scary at all!
3. You’re rewarded with personal growth.
Personal growth is a good thing! You may start to feel more confident, comfortable, and powerful after you overcome your fears.