Being Intimate with Fear: Four Steps to Stronger Relationships

The old adage that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself” might not apply to many modern situations now, especially in business. While that former philosophy from Franklin Delano Roosevelt was almost 90 years ago, fear is still very much with us in uncertain business times.

One of the keys to overcoming fear in business is to become more intimate with it. If that sounds strange, let’s consider this almost like business therapy.

Embracing fear and knowing it exists will ultimately help you understand it better and be able to take on the biggest challenges for your company.

How does that work exactly? We can look at this as taking on fearful things like intimacy, rejection, failure, and self-sabotage.

Fear

Tackling Fears of Intimacy in Business

Yes, one can apply intimacy to the world of business as well, even if you may usually apply this to interpersonal relationships.

Being fearful of intimacy in business sometimes means being afraid to reach out to create new business partnerships. It may also mean being afraid to have closer relationships with internal business associates or employees.

To overcome this, one has to look at what might be keeping you from being intimate with fear. As psychologists say on Psych Alive above, most intimacy issues are due to past issues in either being hurt in a relationship or being afraid to take on new relationships in favor of others.

This sense of vulnerability is natural, yet embracing it head-on will allow you to realize that nurturing new business friendships will benefit you in the long run.

Those potential new business partners may have the same feelings as you. Likewise for any employee you’ve neglected to reach out to.

When dealing with this through employees, holding meetings to get more personally involved in reaching your goals will do much toward helping you overcome this level of fear.

The Fear of Rejection

Part of this applies to intimacy above, of course. However, rejection in business can truly heighten fear, especially in uncertain times. With so many unknowns in the time of COVID-19, perhaps you fear taking on any risks at the moment.

As Inc. pointed out, one of the biggest hurdles in fearing rejection is simply lack of good goal-setting. If you can set realistic goals and keep them focused, you can see you have a workable plan ahead of you.

Much of this won’t work unless you get your entire team on-board with you to reach those goals.

Setting something ambitious and working together to achieve it over a well-designed timetable will remove you from experiencing fear of rejection.

Believing in what you offer as a company will also translate over to potential customers being convinced you’re offering something of value.

The Fear of Failure

No doubt you already have some business failures in your past. If so, you need to reach back into how you handled that failure in the first place. You might have forgotten that path as you experience more fear now of your company failing in some capacity.

All business experts note you need to embrace failure. This is the reality in so many companies, even if you also need a backup just in case failure does happen.

By doing a deep-dive analysis of your business first, you can find your way out of failure as well.

While you should always take responsibility if something does fail (rather than blame others), looking toward the future is your true golden path.

If you know exactly what you did wrong, you already have a valuable blueprint to go by in making sure it never happens again.

Fear of Self-Sabotage

Dealing with this particular fear can become very defeating while running a company. Your first step is to do similarly to how you tackled failure: Know yourself and your business.

Perhaps you need some self-analysis of how you perform running your business.

Having more personal meetings with your team about job performance and how they feel about your leadership style can help hold a mirror up to how you run things.

Most important is holding yourself accountable. As various women entrepreneurs noted several years ago, you should never undervalue your worth.

Finally, investing in a mentor is an effective way to take away the fear that you might self-sabotage your company or job before truly succeeding.