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4 ways to overcome the fear of starting your business.

Where would you rather be in five years?

Commuting 1 hour each way to your 9-5, Monday through Friday. Your boss doesn’t respect you, you’re just another number. Your salary is sub-par and you’re working week-to-week just to get by. You have weekends free, but only 2 weeks of vacation per year. You constantly wonder “what if I had started my business five years ago like I had wanted?”. You’d hoped to work on your business part-time until it took off, but by the time you get home from your job, you’re exhausted, uninspired and doubtful that it will ever work. You know you were meant for bigger and better things, but you never took that risk on yourself. You played it safe.


Working from a comfy home office with your dog snuggled up against your feet. No boss to check in with. No 1 hour commute to a cubicle. You choose how you spend every day. You take your kids to the park every Tuesday afternoon and meet up with your friends for lunch every Friday. You work less than you did at your day job, but you manage to make more money than you could have ever imagined. You take 2 months off every year to re-charge and relax… because you can. You’re inspired every day. You wake up on Monday morning ready for the week. You took a risk. You bet on yourself.


Which would you choose?


When you sign up to my email list, I ask everyone a question in the first email:

“What is the one thing holding you back from starting or growing your business”

The top 3 responses:


My response to ‘money’: it costs $8/year for a domain name, about $6/mo. for hosting.

My response to ‘time’: everyone has the same 24 hours in a day, 7 days in a week, etc. It’s what you choose to do with your time that counts.

My response to fear is a bit different. That’s something that most of us can relate to. Before anybody starts their business, it’s only natural to be fearful of the unknown.

But, just like any other activity, the fear starts to go away after you’ve been practicing for a while.


Here are four ways to overcome the fear of starting your business:

1. Understand that everyone fails

The only people who don’t fail are the ones who never take risks. They’re also the ones who will never be able to experience the freedom and thrill of owning their own business.

Look at Russell Simmons, for example. Here’s a quote that I pulled from this article (which you should also read):

“Many of my biggest business endeavors were failures before they became a success. Some failed for as long as six years before they hit.  Everyone around me thought I was crazy. You just have to stay at it.” — Russell Simmons

Many successful business owners have failed. Scratch that – MOST successful business owners have failed. It’s what they did after they failed that made the difference.

Here’s another awesome quote, just because I love me a good quote:

“Failure is an event, never a person.” — William D. Brown

2. Consider your worst-case scenario

How bad is it? If you ever find yourself in your worst-case scenario, what are some things that you can do to fix your situation?

For example, if you quit your job and don’t end up making as much money as you thought at the beginning of your business you could always take on a part-time job until your business takes off.

When it comes down to it, your worst-case scenario isn’t normally as bad of a situation as you assume. There are always things you can do to reverse it.

3. Consider your missed opportunities

For me, the fear of NOT starting my business and always wondering what if far outweighed any fear of failure that I might have in business.

I’m so scared of what I could miss out on, that not taking action is out of the question.

I use fear to give myself the momentum to prove myself wrong. To shock those around me who were also doubtful.

What are some missed opportunities that you might have if you let your fear win?

Some of mine include: financial freedom, living my desired lifestyle, 8 weeks of vacation every year, daily freedom and being able to make a difference in people’s lives by helping them create their dream business.

The question is – could I live my entire life never knowing what could have been?

4. Have a solid foundation and vision in place

I believe that what causes most creatives to never start their business is not understanding how the business side of things will work.

As a creative, you tend to focus more on the actual skill that you can offer, but neglect the side of business that enables you to make money from those skills.

It could any (or all) of these struggles that cause this fear:

  • You can’t clearly explain WHY people should trust, believe and buy from you.
  • You don’t feel confident in what you’re offering, because you’re scared to death of the ‘S’ word – SALES!!
  • You don’t know who you’re selling your services to, so you’re unable to connect on an emotional level with the people who are willing & ready to pay for what you’re offering.

Having a solid foundation in place that clearly lays out all of the above, will eliminate so many fears and allow you to feel confident and clear in your business.

Time for action –

If you struggle with fear, go through each of these ways and get real honest with yourself. I’ve created a fillable form PDF to help you to work through each question.

Download it here, save it to your computer and fill it out.

If you’re still feeling the fear, come back here and tell me what you’re thinking.

I want to help you however I can, and you never know who else could be reading – there are always people ready and willing to help out.

If you think this article will help out a friend, please share it using any of the social buttons below. I’d appreciate it and I know they will, too.

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  • Erin Blackwell

    Great advice, I loved #3 =)

    • amandagenther

      Yes, #3 is the one that I respond to the most, too!

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  • Thanks for your advice. I am now working for my own and one thing I realized is that I am a much happier person and no more Monday Blues.

  • ankush kalra

    Great thoughts.
    i am planning to start my own business but feels terrible of stepping into the market.
    After reading your article, I think I am ready to blow the trumpet.
    wish me goodluck

  • chandrashekhar kude

    The article is fantastic & discuss real facts that a starter face.The established businessman also may have fears but he can pay & keep different speciality persons to handle problems he can’t handle.But starter is one man show ,employing persons do not afford so he should learn to take pay basis service which he can’t handle alone. It is real that when problems arise at starting a running & winding up business tendency work intensively & separate mindset require to struggle that any educational system never give in schools & college or university.

  • Paul Blart

    Interesting article. I do have a few fears, however. I fear the stock market is controlled by the federal not-so-federal reserve with the ability to raise or lower the markets artificially. I fear the complexity of the current illogical tax code system that does not help businesses but makes uncertainties more uncertain, especially when grim reaper uncle sam called your number for a random audit. I fear the terrible health care system which forces me to want to only hire less than fifteen employees. I fear going into meaningless lawsuits with companies I have never heard of in my life that are dying to sue anyone for just about anything. I fear the news being used as a political weapon where if you’re caught in it’s headlights, it may spell the end of your business. And, I fear running a business for a long time and having a fire marshal or some other city loon with a pen mark my business to stop operation immediately because a plastic valve is not up to code. Aside from that, I would feel pretty motivated about going into business.