Facing Fears for Motivation

Do the thing you fear to do and keep on doing it... that is the quickest and surest way ever yet discovered to conquer fear.
-Dale Carnegie

For many of us, successfully meeting goals can be scary. Any goals we achieve will result in some change in life. What if the change is not what we really want? What if we can’t handle the change? What if we make sacrifices and do not receive the benefits we expect?

Many of these what ifs may be legitimate questions, but the reverse is true as well. What if we never change because we’re afraid? What if we can handle more than we are taking on and are missing opportunities? What if we make no sacrifices and receive no rewards? What if life could be more than it is now?

Without facing fear, none of these questions can be answered. Without accepting imperfection in our plans, we’ll have no plans at all. If we don’t give ourselves the opportunity to fail, we have no opportunity to succeed.

Motivated By Fear

The act of facing and conquering fears is tremendously motivating. Each fear we conquer releases us from a limitation. It frees us by releasing a bond. And, it makes facing additional fears easier.

The act of facing fear (a.k.a. a courageous act), triggers a self-perpetuating cycle toward fearlessness.

Faith Dissolves Fear

Like darkness in the presence of light, fear disappears in the presence of faith in God, faith in ourselves, faith in our plans and goals. When we allow fear to limit our choices, we are rejecting faith. With pure faith, there is no fear. As we learn from Immaculée Ilibagiza in her book, Left to Tell, which I discussed in Monday’s post, the power of faith has no limits, but faith is not easy.

Our faith falters. It is imperfect. This is a natural and human. So, we live with fear at times and learn to face it to diminish its power.

Fearlessness Versus Recklessness

I am not suggesting that we abandon fear entirely. Fear has value in alerting us to real danger in addition to perceived danger. If you find yourself facing a Grizzly bear and experience fear, I wouldn’t suggest giving it a bear hug to face your fear. But, if fear is preventing you from doing something you have a passion to do, allow faith and courage to carry you through your fear.

This post is the 8th and final post of the series: Motivation to Complete Your Goals.

Review other articles on the motivation building process:

  1. Self Confidence For Motivation
  2. Planning For Motivation
  3. Organization & Motivation
  4. Breaking Tasks Down for Motivation
  5. Celebrating Milestones
  6. Enjoying the Journey
  7. Following Through For Motivation
  8. Facing Fears for Motivation

About the author


I am Danny Kohn, writer and designer for this site and owner, software engineer and consultant for Inspirations Software Design. My three greatest passions in life are sharing time with my family, software design and sharing inspiration with others. I have the incredible privilege of being able to spend a significant amount of time every day doing each of those three things. I am a single father of Tristen, our 6 year old son. It has been such an incredible joy to watch him grow up and learn so much. Everything he does and says overwhelms me with adoration. We have a wonderful evening ritual of reading books together in a beanbag chair. Nearly every night, we have a laughing attack together. I smile and giggle constantly in his presence and feel truly inspired.

Permanent link to this article: http://beinspiredeveryday.com/2007/10/10/facing-fears-for-motivation/


  1. Tracey says:

    Hi Danny:
    I really liked this line from today’s post:

    “If we don’t give ourselves the opportunity to fail, we have no opportunity to succeed.”

    Thanks for giving me something to think about every day. I really enjoy it.


  2. Danny says:

    Thanks for the comment, Tracey. It’s great to know that I’m helping you keep your mind active.

  3. Jean Browman--Cheerful Monk says:

    I try to avoid thinking in terms of success and failure. I love learning new things, and I need freedom to do that. William Strunk’s, “If you can’t pronounce it, say it loud!“, is my motto.

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