At a recent presentation training course, run by the brilliant David Josephs, we briefly discussed our fears about presenting. After all, if we’re so nervous, we must be afraid of something!
The discussion got me thinking about fears in general. Fear can be a great motivator, if you know how to identify and overcome it. But what if you don’t know what your career fears are? We all have them – but can we all spot them?
There are a few different general fears that I’ve noticed come up time and again for many professionals. They’re usually driven by similar things. I’ll cover a few of them now, but if I’ve missed anything out, feel free to comment.
So how do you conquer those fears? It’s easier when you identify the root of the problem, which is, universally, a feeling of inadequacy. I don’t deserve the promotion, my ideas aren’t worth people’s time. However, if you’re employed in this market, the likelihood is that your employers think highly of you. In most fields, there are still more candidates than there are jobs and employers have the pick of the bunch. Would they have hired somebody they thought would fail?
Your fear doesn’t only hold you back, it can deprive the company of that breakthrough idea you were too scared to voice, that piece of work you threw in the bin that could have been excellent, getting to know a great human being and robbing the business of a top manager.
Once you get to know your fear, it can be your greatest motivator. All you have to do is look it in the eye and let it dare you to go even further. So what’s your career fear?