Fear: The Dream Stealer

By guest blogger Ja’Nese Dixon

Ja'Nese Dixon, author of Black Diamond“What we fear doing most is usually what we most need to do.” I think I live by this Tim Ferriss quote. It has become somewhat of a mantra when I’m fighting the urge to talk myself out of doing something for no other reason than being a scaredy-cat. No offense to cats, but sometimes I’d rather hunch my back, show my claws (that I don’t intend to use), and run.

Before you discount my posting or write me off, stop to consider what have you put off doing out of fear. I know I’m not the only one, and in most venture and circumstances I’m as fearless as a super hero. But under those rare occasions when I’m showing my claws and taking quick glances–ensuring that the coast is clear–it’s usually due to some underlying anxiety that I have to address before moving forward.

Here are a few methods I use to move past that all-consuming, action-halting FEAR.

1. Do It Anyway

That’s right.

I run into the burning building not stopping to acknowledge my fear or to consider the consequences. Now, this post is not advocating actually running into a burning building. It is, however, encouragement to write (blank)–the first chapter of your book, send that query letter, self publish your book. You fill in the blank.

Do the thing that is terrifying you most. Because in the end, you’ve normally worked it up to be more than it is. It will probably suck, but I am certain it’s not as gut wrenching as you’ve perceived. And most important, you would have jumped over your first hurdle.

Congratulations! (I’m standing at my desk clapping for you.)

2. Identify What’s Stopping You

Do you fear writing your book because of potential embarrassment? Have you declined on pursuing your dreams because you lack enough knowledge? Does self-publishing scare the bajeezes out of you?

We can make up all types of excuses. Write them down and determine which ones have merit. Then create a plan as to how you will address them.

But here’s the difficult, yet necessary next step, set a date.

You have to set start date for addressing the items on your list. This is not a free pass to wander about exploring your fears. As a result, you will have a deadline to assist with addressing your issues and moving forward. Adversely, if you fail to acknowledge your fears and take steps to alleviate them, you will soon amass new fears to accompany the old ones and your goals will seem further away.

3. Find a Buddy

I’m sure you’re thinking…a buddy. Yes, an accountability buddy. Find someone you can trust to hold you accountable for moving forward in your goals and dreams. You see, it’s easy to talk ourselves out of things that we haven’t shared with someone else. No one will never know you were supposed to be this super cool author rockstar, or that you are an exquisite storyteller.

However, when you share plans with another person it holds you accountable. You have to stand up and take charge or risk looking like a quitter or worse, a scaredy-cat.

Fear is the worse dream snatcher because the originating source usually lives within us. We can talk ourselves out of our best life or we can stand up and make it happen. Which do you chose?


JA’NESE DIXON spends her days marketing professionals and businesses online and her nights writing. She is preparing for the release of her debut novel, Black Diamond, in June 2010. She’s an avid reader, crocheter, and music junkie, and the hugest Edward Cullen fan on the planet . . . (oops, did I write that?). Ja’Nese lives in Houston, TX, with her husband and two wonderful children. To learn more, visit her online at www.janesedixon.com.

7 Responses to Fear: The Dream Stealer
  1. Lois
    February 26, 2010 | 2:55 PM

    Great article! I think I’d better get my butt in gear and start editing my works so I can actually move toward becoming published (huge fear here)! 🙂

  2. Ja'Nese Dixon
    February 26, 2010 | 3:25 PM

    Thank you! And you can do it!


  3. Jamilah
    February 26, 2010 | 3:39 PM

    Did you write this for me???? It can apply to many different things in my like that I put off . . . . Thanks =)

  4. Tee C. Royal
    February 27, 2010 | 11:01 PM

    Nice, article, Ja’Nese!

  5. Ja'Nese Dixon
    March 5, 2010 | 7:56 PM

    To Jamilah, yes, it’s for you. Fear is fear. It can keep you from being the best you. Don’t let it!

    To Tee, thank you! Visit me again here are Fear of Writing.

  6. al1801
    July 18, 2010 | 7:57 PM

    What a great article! Ja’Nese, it fitted me to a T. I have/had an innate fear of writing, why? I dunno. N ow, by this, I mean creative writing. To cite Oz vernacular “This is bloody crazy, because I am a broadcast/print journo.

    I love the concept of the burning building and with my writing, I’ll do just that – go for broke.

    Milli has invited me to check out her Milliver’s travels with a view to doing a short piece on my home town – and country, Australia.

    I do not like dream stealers – but then it was pointed out that by denying others to view my writing, I am being selfish and thus my own dream stealer.

    PS: Love the spelling of your name :0)

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