Fear of failure (atychiphobia) has two related context which is fear and failure. Fear is a strong, intense, uncontrollable and unpleasant emotion due to an actual or perceived or imminent danger which can be induced by someone or something.
An irrational sense of fear is known as phobia which causes traumatic events thereby affecting the physical and mental well being of an individual or animal.
Failure has different definitions because we all have different objectives, cultures and norms. Failure is a condition or state of not being capable of achieving success. It is the inability of performing a desired or required function.
The derogatory term “loser” is usually used to describe someone who does not have the ability to carry out a specific or required function or objective successively.
Atychiphobia is the irrational and intense fear of not achieving success which deprives people from reaching their full potential in lives. Atychiphobia is one of the strongest factors holding people back which makes them give up on their dream.
Fear of failure is like any other kind of fear, it’s a feeling produced by your subconscious mind preventing you from obstacles.
Fear of failure occurs especially in people which are not capable of tolerating emotions connected with failure. These emotions could be shame, disappointment, regret or any kind of failure.
Failure is not a permanent change in direction; it only helps to set paths straight for the next success.
Everyone despises failure because it tends to sabotage or weaken an individual’s life either by committing suicide, telling great lies, faking illness which might lead to joblessness, separation of homes, lowering of rank or status and negative comments from people.
Everybody has an atom of fear of failure but might not want to admit it to themselves. Fear of failure can be one or a combination of fear of poverty, loss of money, ridicule or disappointment, loss of love, job insecurity and loss of respect or confidence.
Fear of failure might be a good thing, the feeling a person gets when he has failed can bring about the key that will change the person’s life. Failure is the painful feeling someone needs to make the right strategic decisions, it’s an opportunity to review what you’re doing right or wrong and how you can alter your life for the best. And also just because failure might be a good thing doesn’t mean you should do everything you can to fail. If you start something with a negative mindset of failure then it will happen meaning half of your effort is given because you expect failure.
When a person fails he or she is getting details or the reason his or her goals were not being accomplished. For example, asking for a feedback after a failed project which is a useful tool in learning and growing from mistakes.
Some great people found success despite having failures such as;
- K Rowling: She was famously rejected by great twelve publishers before Harry Potter and the Philosophers stone was accepted.
- Walt Disney: He was fired from a newspaper for lacking imaginations and having no original ideas and he was also turned down three hundred and two times before he got finances for creating Disney land.
- Albert Einstein: He didn’t speak until he was four and didn’t read till he was seven, his teachers said he would never amount to something yet he won a nobel prize and became the face of modern physics.
- Vincent Van Gogh: He only sold one painting in his lifetime to a friend. He still kept painting despite that and finished more than eight hundred pieces. His most expensive painting today is worth $142.7 million dollars.
- Oprah Winferey: She was demoted from her job as a news anchor because she wasn’t fit for television.
By studying the history of successful, you’ll find one rejection or the other but instead of allowing the rejection to affect them they took action and believed in their visions when faced with an obstacle.
Symptoms of Atychiphobia
– Low self regard or confidence commonly used by negative statements such as “I’ll never be good enough for that position” or “I’m not clever enough to be on that team”.
– Self damage or destruction such as procrastination and excessive concern.
– Unwillingness or hesitancy to try new and difficult things.
– Perfectionism (a dislike for anything less than perfection).
– Physical symptoms such as anger, frustration, heart racing, guilt, confusion, shame and severe headache which prevents attainment of planned objectives.
– Inability to pursue future goals and objectives.
– Loss of interest in work.
– Being shy
– Worrying about disappointments
Causes of Atychiphobia
All fears are learned, no one is born with fear therefore fears can be unlearned by observing self discipline serially until the fear disappears.
Causes of failure varies from one individual to another, failure is a good thing and should not be feared rather it should be welcomed.
It is a myth that makes you understand failing is a bad thing instead an individual should understand that everyone fails and the more you fail, the more you keep succeeding.
Here are some causes of atychiphobia:
- Past traumatic or disappointing events
- Disciplined parents, guardians or bosses.
- Fear of getting it right the first time or making mistakes: some people fear making errors inducing them quit trying which prevents them from making mistakes in front of others.
- Rejection: being casted away can also bring about fear of failure
- Criticism: fear of what others might say or do to us.
Overcoming fear of failure- Atychiphobia
It hurts when you know you’ve tried your best and it wasn’t good enough therefore failing is an opportunity to start all over more intelligently.
You can overcome the fear of failure by the following ways:
- Trying again: your dream doesn’t have an expiry date so keep trying
- Have a positive mind and surround yourself with positive minded people who are going to lift you up when down: when you approach challenging situations with a positive mind you’ll be ready to face and overcome failure and impediment. You’ll only see defeats as part of the temporary hindrances to achieve success.
- Creating a vision board: visions are imaginary ideal goals toward which someone aspires. So to overcome the fear of failure you have to have visions.
- Having faith in yourself and stop comparing yourself with others or worrying about what others are doing: if you don’t believe in yourself no one else would believe in you which is one of the easiest ways of overcoming the fear of failure whereas believing in yourself would not bring a sense of rejection even when others reject you, you are not rejecting yourself. When you believe in yourself and your talents you would not be scared of innovation.
- Making smart goals, acknowledging your positive qualities and rewarding yourself: when you have to have goals and missions you’ll be willing to do anything to achieve it whereas nobody will be able to distract you from your goals.
- Walk with a mentor: by submitting yourself under the leadership of a mentor, you’ll be guided on how to overcome the fear of failure. A mentor is a trusted teacher or counselor who has achieved what you intend achieving so they’re quite familiar with what you’re likely to face.
- Being patient, working hard and being consistent: Rome wasn’t built in a day so you have to keep working hard to turn your weaknesses to strength and threats to opportunities. Learn how to fail and learn how to rise above it.
- Refuse to give up, say no to negative mindsets: when you believe in facing rejections and failing in your set goals you create a sense of motivation for yourself amongst failures and rejections.
- Having strong self-esteem and confidence.
- Embracing change by welcoming new challenges: when you aren’t familiar with something it’s easy to conclude that it is more challenging and difficult than it really is. When you challenge yourself and constantly innovate the fear of failure fades away gradually replacing itself with a sense of confidence.
- Find a way to relax and explore like travelling or swimming as this will reduce the chances of falling into depression.
Our brain wants to shield us from something new, it doesn’t like surprises therefore preventing us from taking chances to be successful or achieving our dreams.
When we fail we assume that everyone would know or the worst would happen but in the real sense nobody has the time to keep record of our failures, only a few might get to know and it will very soon be forgotten, everyone has his or her problem to worry about.
The only person we have to face every day is ourselves.
So look in the mirror, ask yourself if you gave your best shot or rather fail and live with regret knowing you never really tried anything at all.