The fear of failure is a force that can widen the gap between the life you have and the life you want.
It’s felt through feelings of anxiety, perfectionism, avoidance, procrastination, and low self-esteem.
These five quotes are the most insightful quotes on the fear of failure. Each one brings wisdom from a unique angle.
Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will.
– Suzy Kassem
Most people don’t get as far as failure killing their dream. They stop at the fear of failure. They give up before they even start. They kill their idea without giving it a fighting chance.
Not all ideas are going to work. You have to keep spinning the wheel of fortune to land on success. If you’re too scared to land on a few misses, you’ll never win.
Taking a shot at your dream may not guarantee success, but not trying guarantees you’ll fail.
Don’t talk yourself out of your dreams.
Don’t fear failure so much that you refuse to try new things. The saddest summary of a life contains three descriptions: could have, might have, and should have.
- Louis E. Boone
Your life becomes defined by what you didn’t do when you let the fear of failure dominate it. Regrets become more prevalent than memories of what you achieved.
Bronnie Ware, a nurse at a hospice in Australia, said this about the elderly on their deathbed:
“When people realize that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.”
The regrets that bring the deepest sorrow and linger the longest come from not taking action on your aspirations.
The master has failed more times than the beginner has tried
- Stephen McCranie
The master embraces the fact that failure is integral to success.
It’s a cliche that every failure is a lesson, but it doesn’t make it any less true. Failures give us wisdom and build character. Each one prepares us for our next endeavour. It’s only a true failure if you don’t learn from it.
The beginner’s fear of failure prevents them from ever making progress. They stay beginners because they rob themselves of growth opportunities and spins on the wheel of fortune.
When you welcome failure, you free yourself to succeed.
You can fail at what you don't want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love.
- Jim Carrey
No matter what you do, there’s a possibility of failure.
If you can fail to achieve a goal you don’t care about, why not take a chance on something you actually want.
Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can avoid only by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.
- Denis Waitley
Failure is a part of life, not the end of it. If you want to enjoy what it has to offer, you’ll have to experience some failures.
You can only avoid them if you don't try to grow, don’t try to accomplish anything, and don’t seek happiness. If you just exist, you’ll never fail. But that’s not a life worth living.
Life becomes short and meaningless if the fear of failure stops you from attempting anything.
The most meaningful actions are the most daunting ones. To get what’s most important to us, we have to cross a threshold of fear. Like Jack Canfield once said, “everything you want is on the other side of fear.”
These fear of failure quotes show us how failure is unavoidable if we want an enjoyable life.
If we let the fear of failure paralyze us, our lives will be filled with regrets and defined by “what if’s”. That’s why the most successful people embrace failure.
You can choose to welcome failure into your life for many reasons.
Maybe your dreams are bigger than the pain of failure.
Maybe you see failure as an opportunity for growth.
Maybe you rather fail at things than live with the regret of never trying.
Maybe you realize we don’t have time to waste; the clock of life is ticking. Like Naval Ravikant once said, "Everyman has two lives, and the second starts when he realizes he has just one."
Maybe you understand we need to keep spinning the wheel of fortune to land on success eventually. Like Benjamin Disraeli said, "Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action."
It doesn’t matter how you choose to cope with the fear of failure; it just matters that you do.
"So what's it going to be - safety or freedom? You can't have both." - Louis Sachar