How To Overcome The Fear Of Failure

The only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” said Franklin D. Roosevelt during his first inaugural address in 1933.   The infamous quote often comes to mind when we think of fear.  


Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

*I am not a doctor and I’m in no way trying to tell anyone how to manage their fears, anxieties, or any other mental illness. We’re all different, and we all handle our mental illnesses in different ways. It takes a strong person to battle mental illnesses no matter how one chooses to do so. This post is simply meant to help you cope with the day-to-day struggles that come along with anxiety and fear of failure*

Fear is defined as, “an unpleasant emotion caused by the belief that someone or something is dangerous, likely to cause pain or a threat.”   

Fear doesn’t discriminate and once entrenched it proves difficult to break.  Even when its first glimmers are minuscule, if one doesn’t learn to mindfully take into account the triggers and the physical reactions created by said fears, it can be an arduous road.   

Often it’s taught there are things you have to overlook.  That’s a given.  Sweeping things under the rug, at times, is a necessity in order to navigate the demands of life.  However, you can sweep something under the rug only so long before it manifests itself in other ways.  

For introverts, the world often seems too busy and chaotic enough.  (Granted, it often feels that way for almost anyone.)   Add sudden, swift changes (or planned changes) and fear can greatly impact thoughts and physical health such as migraines, tension headaches, muscle aches, insomnia, fatigue, etc.  Visit for a list of 16 Effects of Stress on Your Body.

What is my biggest fear?  FEAR OF FAILURE!  

Atychiphobia is defined as when we allow that fear to stop us doing the things that can move us forward to achieve our goals aka fear of failure. 

In light of the proven effects of stress on one’s health, it can also hinder social interaction and lead to greater fears and phobias.   How can you overcome the fear of failure?

According to Lisa Firestone, PH.D., Director of Research and Education at The Glendon Association “The inner voice undermines us and limits our capacity to pursue and accomplish the things we want in life.  The first step in overcoming our fear of failure is, therefore, to identify when our inner coach is talking to us.  

“As we start to recognize how and when this voice is influencing our present lives, we can start to separate it from our true point of view, our real self.”  To read more from Lisa Firestone, PH.D. for related articles, visit

Our thoughts shape how we think about ourselves, the world around us, and our actions. However, our thoughts are fleeting and at times fear-based.  Recognizing negative self-talk and reframing it to what is actually true, can help overcome the fear of failure.  For me, this approach has helped greatly and hope it can benefit you as well!

This post is part of the 52-Week Blog Challenge. The  52-Week Blog Challenge was started by Britts Daily Dose & Sit Back And Just Live.  If you want to participate you can too!  All you need to do is 1. post the banner at the top of the post and 2. link both of their blogs in your post!


To read more of Sweetsnsnarks blog posts from the 52-Week Blog Challenge check out Favorite Summer Accessories, Thoughts On Time Management, and Books To Read For Personal Development.  For blog updates and daily motivation follow @sweetsnsnarks on Instagram.



30 thoughts on “How To Overcome The Fear Of Failure

  1. Your post was very transparent and insightful. Thank you for the window into this kind of fear. I’m one of those knuckleheads that jumps into what I want and figures it out as I go. Mostly, it works out. But every once in a while, a little healthy fear and foresight could have helped me out.


  2. Fear can be so hard to overcome – but this article was really great! I know I’ve let the fear of failure stop me from doing some things, but in the end it’s usually always better to just push through and do it! Even if you’re afraid to fail.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a fear of failure. I really expect a lot more of myself than anyone else does. I’ve realized over the years that sometimes things seem like a big deal to me, but they really aren’t that big of a deal and I don’t have to agonize over little things.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great post! I have found that the fear of failing can be so limiting but in the end if you push through there is such a great sense of achievement.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m reminded of a great quote by Teddy Roosevelt: “It is not the critic who counts…The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood…who comes short again and again…but who does actually strive to do the deeds…who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

    Fearing failure can be so tough to overcome, but the only to walk across a tight-rope is to do it! As with most things, I think the fear goes away as you encounter it. Great post! And I love all the links to stress management stuff; it’s so easy to forget that stress is something that can be coped with, not just something to avoid!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I can completely relate to this fear of failure. Thank you for the important reminder to be mindful of our thoughts and recognize our negative thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I didn’t know it had a name – this fear that plagues my life. Thanks for this short, powerful post. Your words came on a day I needed them. I’m grateful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I can definitely relate, Joy, and thank you for your kind words! I didn’t think of putting a name to it either for a long time. The fear can strike out of nowhere sometimes and have lasting effects we don’t even realize. So glad the post came to you when you needed it. How has the fear of failure affected you? How have you been able to overcome it?


  8. Gosh, I appreciate your truth and transparency in this post so much. Its something so many struggle with but we are not meant to! This was super helpful to me, friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your kind words, Megan! Even as I reply to this post, I know there is so much more I could include in it of not only my experiences but of others as well. I thank you for the affirmation that we are not meant to struggle with it. We all need to hear that from time to time. Thank you for commenting!


  9. This post was very eye-opening for me. I realized that in my desire to “do it all” and be all things to all people that I really just have a fear of being a failure. I want to be the best mom, wife, teacher, and blogger, but I can’t! It is totally stressing me out. I think I need to take a step back and let go of my fear!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is eye-opening, isn’t it?! Not sure where the culture of “doing it all” came from entirely, but I think it has been partially a disservice. Accepting that we cannot do it all can release a lot of the stress in our lives and make us more authentic. Thank you for commenting and I hope you do take a step back and let go of that fear!

      Liked by 1 person

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