At my yoga studio, there is a March 30/30/30 challenge; 30 days, 30 classes, get 30% off your next package. My mom and I do it every year, but my dad had this fear around yoga. His flexibility is not what it used to be so perhaps he had a fear of failure or a fear of being judged. Maybe it was a fear of injury or that it wouldn’t work for him. I can guess all day long, but instead, I will share with you that my dad decided to push through his fears. He started a few days later than my mom and I, so he’s been doing doubles. NOW he is ahead of me AND he’s revolving his whole calendar around yoga classes. I’m so happy for him because he gets better each day and it’s so good for him. My dad is both literally and mentally stretching. Today’s article is on pushing through fear.

WILD; How to overcome your fears

Wild is based on the true story of Cheryl Strayed, who accomplished a 1,100-mile solo hike. As with all true stories, you can learn a lot from Cheryl’s mistakes. She didn’t take the time to research her trail. She didn’t pack and lift her pack until the morning she was to leave. However, there’s a great quote that says, “She thought she could so she did.”

Fears generally come from the unknown; I’m afraid to talk to a stranger at an event because I don’t know what to say. I’m afraid I won’t make it in this industry because other people are great at the business and I’m not. I’m afraid to do everything I can because if I don’t give my whole heart and soul then I can’t really fail, because I never actually tried.   

I have solutions for all three of these fears as well as the many others I know exist.

1.    Research- the more you know on a topic/industry/person/company, the more confident, empowered, and comfortable you will feel in a networking, interview, or meeting situation.
2.    Prepare- Successful people put a lot of preparation into succeeding. They create business plans with action steps to accomplish milestones that lead to their goals. They practice/rehearse for new situations. They plan for achieving a successful outcome as well as a backup plan should the outcome go another way.

Can you succeed without research and preparation? Cheryl did. She suffered greatly, took many wrong turns, found mentors along the way, was hungry, thirsty, blistered and exhausted, but she made it.That’s why they made a movie about her… because she’s not the norm.

So why her?  Because she knew she could so she did. Her why was stronger than her desire to give up (you’ll have to see the movie to understand her why).

Here’s the problem with 99% of the people I encounter. Their “why” isn’t strong enough to push them through their fears and they give up. Do you plan to give up? No? Then here’s my advice:

Research and preparation. That’s how you overcome fears and build your confidence.


1. Make a list of your fears. Not the big ones like “I’m getting too old,” the ones that stop you from moving forward like, “I don’t know what to say to people.” “I don’t know what message to leave on someone’s voice mail.” “I don’t like going to networking events or making phone calls.”

2. Design and prepare a plan through research to overcome each fear.  

Cheryl wanted to give up so many times, but she didn’t. When you first decided to pursue your career path, you knew you could so you did… do you still believe that 100%? Are you still on your path? And if you are, but it’s painful, couldn’t you use a mentor to help you navigate your way?