172: Is Fear Stopping You from Starting Your Business? [Podcast]

Is Fear Stopping You from Starting Your Business?

Is fear stopping you from starting your business?

Before you answer this question, make sure you look clearly at all the common signs of fear. If you think it is something else holding you back from your startup, you might not be doing the right things to get past it.

Today we want to look at the common signs that fear is controlling you.

Like anything else, identifying the core problem is half of the solution.

Is Fear Stopping You from Starting Your Business?

Here are common signs of fear that I see every day in startups.

What kind of business should I start? 

Do not know what to do. This statement is a sign of indecision – usually coming from fear. What are you afraid of? 

    • That you do not know enough?
    • That someone will laugh at you?
    • That you might have to work?

The problem is, you already have tons of ideas – most are right in front of you. They are your calling. To find an idea, go through the calling exercise.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

I do not know where to start? 

While this is a common question, it is often a sign of fear. You can tell if you stay here too long – then it is fear. There is a ton of information about starting businesses – so fear is no excuse.

People usually call me with these questions:

    • What is step 1? 
    • Should I get a loan? 
    • Should I get an office? 
    • Should I get a license? 
    • What about an LLC? 

All of these are fair questions, but not the starting point.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

The BEST way to know where to start it to find an expert. 

Find the person who is living your dream and go talk to them. 

What do I do if I am afraid?

Yes, sometimes we can just admit it.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

What is the fear? What do you think is going to happen? Get clear on what it is you are afraid of. Give it clarity.

Read the book by Richard Mack Machowicz, Unleash the Warrior Within: Develop the Focus, Discipline, Confidence, and Courage You Need to Achieve Unlimited Goals. The book has great tools to help you deal with real fear and how to move through it. As he explains, fear is all in the mind. It is an enemy. It keeps you from moving forward. Like all enemies, you either defeat them or will be defeated by them.

I do not have the time. How can I start a business without any time? 

This is a colossal excuse we all use. But realize it is an excuse driven by fear. Could even be fear of work.  

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

  • Decide. Do you really want this?
  • Think about someone busier than you, getting more done. Would that person have the time?
  • Can you think of anyone who manages many things and seems to have better success than you do? (If not, email me, and I will help you)
  • Dedicate a set amount of time just for your business. Find the time on your calendar you can repeat over and over. It might be 5-6 AM. It might be over lunch. It might be at night. Just find the time, schedule it, and go.

I am procrastinating 

This is a classic. According to the physiologists, fear often shows up as procrastination.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

I need a partner 

If you are waiting for your partner or looking for a partner, this one is usually fear. However, this one does not feel like fear – but it often is. The main reason we want a partner is to have someone to share the burden. We are afraid, and we hope our partner will pull us along. This usually does not work, because your partner is afraid too, and usually less interested than you are. Dave Ramsey often says, “Don’t do it. The only ship that won’t sail is a partnership.

Do not believe me – check out his article, The Dirt on Partnerships.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

  • Evaluate if your partner truly brings any value to the company. Can they do something you cannot?
  • Is it just fear?
  • If you still want to work together, define what each will do, and go at it as two separate companies working together instead of one.
  • Basically – avoid the partnership and deal with the fear.

I am waiting for the economy to get better, my job to lighten up, my kids to be less demanding, my life to be perfect. 

Will not happen. There is always an excuse. The perfect time to start is now. There will always be an excuse if you want one.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

  • Deal with this like others – realize it is fear talking.
  • Then decide if you really want this.
  • Be ready for other fear words to start coming out of your mouth.

I do not know enough 

If you think you know enough, you are lying to yourself. There are always things you need to know that you do not. You will later find the right people or tools – and you will learn along the way.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

  • You probably don’t know enough – get over it.
  • Do not worry too many steps in the future – just deal with now.
  • Focus not on what you know, but instead on how you can help customers. If you can do that, you are in a good place. The rest will come.

I am terrified of running a big company

I hear this one a lot. New founders are afraid of having to hire, have a building, manage people, manage contracts, have a massive shipping operation, etc, etc, etc. But this is not how you start.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

  • Realize you are over-thinking it. Big businesses do not come from startups – they come from a lot of hard work over a long time.
  • Take the first few steps. Focus on your customers, do what you can do to serve them, learn, and grow.
  • Know that it is YOUR business – you are always in control of how big it is. You can decide.

I do not know how to …

  • Handle money
  • Build websites
  • Build products
  • Plan a business
  • Find customers

Yes, there are many things you do not know how to do. It can feel overwhelming.

Is fear stopping you?

How to get past it:

You just need to take one step at a time. The most important things are:

  • Find a customer or two. You do not need a ton to get started.
  • Serve them well.
  • Ask them for feedback and evaluate.
  • Find the next customer.
  • Repeat.

Things like money or websites etc might be key – and you might want to start there. But it is usually better to start with customers one-on-one.

Let me ask again – Is Fear Stopping You from Starting Your Business?

If you need some inspiration and see how a business can get caught by fear and indecision and overthinking, check out the episode on Our Messy Startup

Is Fear Stopping You?  Let Me Help You

Setup a time where we can talk and do a FREE 45-minute coaching call. No commitment required  – if you want to work together even more – we will talk about what that looks like, but on this call, I want to help you define a clear set of steps to get moving and get started.

 Click here to listen now.

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