The Fear.

You must learn to become comfortable with failure, otherwise you will have to become comfortable with regret.

Fear is a natural and primitive emotional response that has served humans well for most of our existence. It alerts us to potential physical and mental harm, real or otherwise.

A hunter-gatherer would not have made it far without fear. It is better to move away from the rustling bush than to ignore it and be mauled by a bear.

The fear of the unknown serves a purpose, however in modern society it often leads to anxiety – a form of persistent fear.

For me, it tends to rear its ugly head whilst I am studying a challenging topic or publishing content online.

The fear of not being good enough. The fear of falling below one’s own expectations. The fear of failure.

It drives negative mental loops and chips away at self confidence.

Dancing with the possibility of failure, which is an inherent part of the learning experience, is uncomfortable and runs in direct opposition to the mind’s want for ease, comfort and safety.

It is easier to lower your expectations and not put in the work.

Whilst avoiding failure is easy and comfortable, it is counterproductive in the long term. You become stagnant and do not give yourself the opportunity for growth.

Instead, you must learn to become comfortable with failure, otherwise you will have to become comfortable with regret.

Regret of the path not taken. Regret of not testing your limits. Never knowing if you could live up to, or exceed, your own expectations.

If I gave in to these feelings every time they arose, then I wouldn’t have passed any exams or had the courage to launch this blog.

Instead of packing it all in, I take a moment to acknowledge the feelings for what they are. A primitive, emotional response that thrives off comfort and hinders growth.

Acknowledging fear diminishes its power and replenishes the self confidence that it attempts to strip away.

Fear may win the occasional battle, but I have no doubt that it will not win the war.

Thanks for reading.

Tom Redmayne

Financial Planner-in-waiting

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