117: Fear of failure is your worst enemy: learn how to overcome it

When was the last time you didn't reach a goal when you planned to? When was the last time you celebrated failure?

If you're thinking WTF? This episode is definitely for you.

In this Money Mindful episode, I'm going to share with you why embracing and celebrating failure is a MUST if you want to achieve those big juicy goals you have.

How to get over your fear of failure.

Why being willing to fail is your super power and how to access it.

This is not a drill, buckle up, this episode might just change your life.


You can listen to the episode above or read the unedited transcript below.


Fear of failure is your worst enemy: learn how to overcome it


Hello, hello, hello and welcome to another episode of the Money Mindful podcast. I am your host Meaghan Jean Smith. I'm a money mindset and life coach for entrepreneurial women. I help you create your money and life goals. Alright, buckle up. This is not a drill, this episode might just change your life. It might also get a bit ranty, I'm not sure. But we're going to talk about failure today. And we're going to talk about celebrating failure. Now, if the word 'failure' triggers you at all, or if you're thinking 'What the actual fuck, why would we celebrate failure?' This episode is definitely definitely for you. Listen up.



Okay, so I want to tell you, on the weekend, we went to one of those kids' play centres, which, oh my gosh, for parents they should supply earplugs when you go through the door. Look, honestly, these kids' play centres. I detest them. For me, they're so chaotic, it's so noisy, you know, it just smells like junk food. And there's kids screaming and lots of, you know, families all squished in together. But my kids absolutely love it. And we went to celebrate a failure. We went specifically, it was a reward for my daughter, we were celebrating the shit out of the fact that she did not become the student representative in her class. And you might be thinking, 'What the heck, what is happening here? What is going on?' So just bear with me. So recently, school started, and at my daughter's school in Australia, and in fact, at public schools in Australia, they do something where they have a student representative, I can't remember what it stands for. Anyway, SRC. Student Representative Council maybe? And they get a student from every grade to represent the class and they have to go to meetings and it's about, you know, creating stuff for the school and they're representing their classroom.



Well, my eldest daughter, who is seven, was in a composite grade last year, so a grade 1-2 class last year, and she was the grade one and she learned about this. And in grade one, you couldn't be an SRC member at her school. And she knew that she really wanted to be able to do this, this was something that she wanted to be able to go for. And so this year, when it came up, she came home and she was like, 'Okay, Mum, Dad, they're doing the SRC reps, I really want to be one. And I've got to write a speech.' And we're like, 'Okay,' and she went off and wrote a little speech all on her own. We did not help her at all, with it. And then she then went to school and told all her friends that she had written a speech. And then I heard from some of the other parents that, you know, their kids then came home and went, 'I've got to write a speech, you know, you have to have a speech for the SRC.'  I'm going to read you the speech. It's so good.



'I am Amelia. And I want to be the SRC. I don't want you to pick me to be the SRC because I have a principal's award or an honour badge, or even an all star award. I want you to pick me because I am a safe and respectful learner. If I am SRC, I will do my best to help you no matter how you are, or what grade you're in. Feel free to ask me anything you need. I don't want to be the SRC to get attention. I want to be the SRC to help you grow and learn through the whole entire year. I won't just teach you the right things. Sometimes you will teach me things that I didn't know. Being the SRC doesn't mean being the bestest, fastest or strongest. It means helping others and being a safe and respectful learner at all times. I want to be the SRC because it makes me happy when I help others. I've had a dream of being the SRC since kindergarten, now I can finally have the chance to do that. This is why I want you to pick me to be the SRC.'



I mean, come on, she's seven, seriously. And we did not help her one iota with writing that, the only thing we helped her with was when she read it to us. And we said, 'Okay, well, when you do the speech in class, you want to try and have some eye contact with the people that you're talking to, and, you know, really convey that passion to them that you've been talking to us about.' That was it. That was the help we gave her, just with the presentation of it. And seriously, I'm thinking about the kids in her grade and I'm like, they must be crazy that they didn't vote for her, that she didn't get the majority of the votes. I mean, this kid, honestly, she's gonna be running the world when she's older, obviously, right? With a speech like that when she's seven. So the morning came of the day when everyone had to vote. And she, you know, made sure she packed her speech. And she did go through a bit of a moment where she had sort of a little bit of nerves. And then I picked her up at the end of the day. I tell you what, like I was getting all worked up about it, I was like, 'Oh, she's got to get this.' And Louis, my partner, her dad, we're both like, yes, you know, she's gonna get it with a speech like that, for sure. She's definitely gonna win.



Anyway, she didn't win. And man, I felt so disappointed inside, I didn't like really convey that really openly to her. And I was just like, so supportive and congratulating her for standing up and putting herself out there. And so that's why we went to this horrible, noisy, loud play centre, because we're like, what do you want to do? Let's celebrate. And I want to explain to you why we did this, and why I think it's so important and why I think you should be doing it too. This is why.



So often, we don't go after what we want to do, we don't go for really big goals or big dreams, because we have a fear that we're not going to actually achieve it. Right? Like we fear that we're going to fall on our face, metaphorically speaking, you know, not literally. And so then we don't go after it, because it feels scary to say out loud, like I want to make, I don't know, $150,000 in my business, or I want to save $100,000, or I want to be able to create a $4 million property portfolio, or whatever it is, it's like, it just feels so grand to us when we first start thinking of these goals that we don't even pursue them, right? Because we think, one, we're going to fail. And two, we don't want to fail.



But when you start probing a little bit, because this is what happens with my clients, like when I start talking to them about 'Well, what would be the worst that would happen if you didn't reach the goal?' And we really kind of go there, like what would happen if you didn't achieve this, or like worst case scenario? And sometimes worst case scenario is, there's a few things, uncomfortable things they might have to do. Like they might have to ring a client or something and cancel something, or they might have to have an awkward conversation with someone.



But at the very crux of it so often, the worst thing that could actually happen is that they feel disappointed. Yeah. Like really think about that for a second. Something that you've been imagining that you'd love to do, but you haven't been going for it because you think that you might fail, right? When you don't go for your goals, by the way, you 100% are going to fail. You are failing ahead of time, right, when you don't go after what you want. When you go after what you want, yeah, you are definitely risking failure. You might stuff it up. You might not reach your goal. You might not reach your goal in the timeframe that you want to reach it by. But you may, right? Like you may reach the goal. But you're 100% not going to reach it if you don't actually even go for it. And so often the worst that can happen is actually just a negative emotion, like disappointment. And I want you to really let that sink in for a second, that there are goals that you may not be going for and the reason why you're not doing it is because you don't want to feel disappointment.Seriously.



Now, if this is you, no judgment, right, nothing's gone wrong here, I'm not having a go at you or anything like that. But what I mean is that when we really start to examine this, like it happens all the time with my clients on client calls, we end up having a laugh, because we get to the stage where it's like, 'Oh, so if I didn't create that, actually, the worst would happen is I would feel some disappointment.' And it's like, we change the whole trajectory of our life, like, we don't go after things that we want, because of fear of feeling disappointed. I mean, there's other fears that we might have, like other emotions, but normally, it's just a negative emotion.



And so I really wanted to celebrate my daughter for going for, like really going for it, you know, like she gave it her all, she practised that speech every night, she went off, and she wrote about the first sort of three quarters of the speech. And then the next day, she added stuff to it. She's like, I want to add this, and then - she didn't get it. But so what, I mean, she's in Grade Two, like, if she didn't become the student representative, this year, even if she doesn't get it next year, or the year after, she will get it, there's no doubt in my mind that it will happen. You know, because, one, she's not afraid to feel disappointment. And two, we're instilling in her the value and the mindset, that we're not trying to say, if you don't achieve your goal, it's no big deal, just give up or whatever, don't go after it. Or that's not the point, this is not one of these kind of bloody Kumbaya, every kid should get a prize kind of comments, I don't mean it like that. But what I mean is that we should celebrate that she went hard for what she wanted. Like, she went hard for that. And, you know, I know she felt disappointed. But she can handle disappointment, we can handle disappointment. But what would have been more disappointing is if she hadn't even gone for it in the first place. Right? Like, how terrible would that be, if she hadn't even like given herself the opportunity to do it.



So I want to bring this to your attention because I think it's a really common thing. I see it often that we limit ourselves, we don't go after what we want because we think we can't, either one, we can't achieve it, or we're scared that we're not going to be able to achieve it and we don't want to feel, you know, disappointed. We don't want to feel that feeling of failure. And I want to offer to you that feeling failure and feeling disappointed or feeling discomfort, that is a superpower. If you're willing to fail, right? If you're willing to feel disappointment, if you're willing to feel uncomfortable, if you're willing to feel some negative emotion, this is how you will achieve your goals. And this is how you can go for really big, juicy, like I mean, life changing, blow your mind goals.



Because if you're prepared, if you're mentally just prepared ahead of time that you know that reaching your goal, failure is going to be involved. Right? It's just part of the process. It's no big deal. It's nothing to get worked up about. It's nothing to be afraid of. It's just like, 'Yeah, that's going to happen. It's not a problem. I know how to experience negative emotion,' you will, I am telling you, achieve your goals. Because so often that is the only thing standing in between you and your goals. Right? Just getting over that fear of failure.



I mean, I've shared with you on the podcast numerous times I think, before, how you know, I've created, set goals for myself, like financial goals in my business that I didn't reach. So what? I reached them months later, right? I didn't reach them in the timeframe that I would have liked to have reached them in, what I was going for. No big deal. I just kept going. I didn't make that mean anything. But I tell you what, I felt disappointed. Like when I didn't reach my goal, right? Like that happens, I feel disappointed when I don't reach my goals in the timeframe that I say that I'm going to reach them in. But then I don't dwell on that. It's like, yeah, I feel that disappointment. And then I just keep going. It's like, 'Oh, it didn't happen in the amount of time that I thought it was going to happen.' But what I do, do is I celebrate the shit out of what I did achieve. And I celebrate the shit out of all the stuff that I do along the way.



Because, think about it, if I just keep going with this example of my daughter. In the process of going for this goal to become an SRC rep, one, she's improved her speech writing skills. Well, I mean, she'd never even written a speech before. So she's developed a skill to be able to write a speech. She's also started to develop a skill to be able to speak in front of a group of people. And she's already improved on it from when she first started, when she's practised with us the first time to when she went to do it at school, like learning how to have eye contact, and pause, and you know, all that stuff. That's a skill now that she's learnt that's going to translate and she's going to be able to utilise that in all other areas of her life, not just with becoming the SRC rep, right? And if she keeps developing this and keeps going for it, imagine where she's going to be later down the track, right? Like, she's going to get this goal. And so I want you to think about that when you're going for your goals, right?



When I didn't reach my financial goal, at the end of last year, I mean, the year before, when I first went for my financial goal for the first year in business, I just kept going, but also, I learnt so many skills from trying to create that goal, right? The person that I became, I grew so much, and then now that goal I'm able to recreate, and I'm able to recreate it faster, because I have the skills to do that. So I really strongly encourage you to not see failure as a dirty word, like embrace failure as something that's like, 'Yes. Okay, this is what I've got to improve on.' Right? 'This is what I need to do to change.'



So for example, I have consults with people who are interested in working with me, and about 50% of the people who come on the consults, say no, right? I don't have a problem with that at all. Like, I don't make that mean anything. By the way 50% rate of people signing up with me is really good. But besides that, what I make that mean is sometimes people say no, it's a no, because they're not a good fit. We realise, we both know, no, it's not a good fit, you're not right for my programme. But sometimes they're a no and I'm just like, 'Oh my gosh, I know that I can help this person, I know that they can create what they want to create.'



And what I do is, I look at it afterwards and I think, 'Wow, I obviously didn't convey the value to them.' Right? I obviously didn't make it really clear, 'This is what you are getting when you work with me, you will learn exactly how to create your goal, you're going to learn how to overcome any obstacle. And you're going to significantly upgrade your money mindset.' Right? All these things that you create when you work with me. And so when somebody says no, I'm like, 'Oh, okay, so this is an opportunity for me to learn how to communicate my offer better.' Right? Because it's like, when I tell somebody 'When you work with me, you are going to be able to create it.' Right, so when they say no, I'm like, 'Seriously? You're saying no to being able to create your goal, what you want help with, what you want to achieve.' And I don't make it mean anything about me, like as in something's gone wrong, I make it mean right, this is an area where I'm just obviously not communicating clearly enough, right? And I can improve in that area. So it's a beautiful thing. It's not a problem, right, like failure, it's not a problem. Nothing has gone wrong.



The only time when failure is a problem, and you might be doing this, so hear me when I say the only time failure is a problem is when you don't go after what you want, and you fail ahead of time because you're afraid that you're going to fail, because of what you're going to go for. I mean, isn't it crazy, when you say it out like that, it's like, you give up ahead of time, because you're worried that you might fail. So it's like you guarantee failure for yourself. Whereas if you actually embrace it, failure is just part of the process for going for your goals, and you can celebrate being in the arena, so to speak. What's that famous speech that Brene Brown, she talks about it in her famous TED talk, but it's like 'Get in the arena,' right? That is where you're going to get scuffs, you're going to fall over, you're going to fall on your face, but you're going to put yourself in the pathway of achieving what you want. Right? This is what living intentionally is all about - actually going for it.



So one of the things that I teach you when you work with me, is how to process your emotions, how to feel negative emotions, and do it in a way that you're not resisting it, you're not afraid to feel negative emotion. And this is actually a skill that we're not taught, you know, we're not taught at school, but when you know how to process emotions, and when you can do that, it's like a frickin' superpower. Because suddenly you're not held back. It's like, 'Oh, right, I might feel disappointed, or I might feel a little bit uncomfortable, you know, asking for a raise, or I might feel some embarrassment if I asked for a raise, and they say no,' right? It's once you know how to handle that negative emotion, I'm telling you, you can do anything. So I hope this helps.



Just in summary, I want to say, don't let failure get in the way of going for your goals. Embrace failure. Being willing to fail is your superpower. I hope from this episode, you've learnt how to access it, it's like, just go for your goals and don't be afraid of it. And if you are afraid of feeling all those negative emotions - get help, get a coach, get someone to work with so you know how to process it, so it's not an obstacle to achieving your goals.



Okay, if you are really enjoying what you're hearing on the show, you want to learn more about working with me, I would love to support you in reaching your goals. When you work with me, I guarantee you will learn exactly how to create your goals so they are as good as done. You are going to learn how to overcome any obstacle. You're going to learn how to improve your relationship with money, and yourself for that matter. You're going to significantly upgrade your money mindset because you're going to get access, to learn tools that will help you create your goals for life. Like you can use these tools for the rest of your life, okay? And you're going to understand why you do the things you do in relation to not achieving your goals, and how to overcome them, okay? And you'll learn how to overcome indecision and you're always going to know what to do next. And most importantly, you're going to learn mental fitness tools, right? That will show you why you get the results that you get and what you can do to change that to be in your favour. So go ahead and go to my website, sign up for a consult. I have spots opening in March. I currently have spots available. I would love that spot to be for you. Until I speak to you again and get in your ears next week, have an amazing week. Bye bye.

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