There is an atmosphere of fear and anxiety in the United States right now, and around the world. Ever since the beginning of 2020, we have been constantly bombarded with messages that are designed to keep us in fear and dependency. I’m not talking about the government or a conspiracy. I’m talking about the plan of the enemy, Satan, to keep people locked in a state of fear.
When you are in a state of fear, you are out of faith and you become dependent on forces other than God to ease your fears (i.e. the government, so-called “scientists,” self-help gurus, your own abilities [or lack of] to acquire resources, etc.). When you are in fear, you are in a place right where the enemy wants you to be: not trusting in God but essentially trusting in your fears rather than trusting God to take care of you. This is one of the enemies biggest tools. If he can keep you afraid, he keeps your focus off of God.
If you search the internet right now, the forecast for the economy and small business looks so grim. Everyone is sharing the same message of fear. However, we are told over and over again in Scripture to NOT be afraid. God didn’t give us a spirit of fear, but of POWER, LOVE, and a SOUND MIND (2 Timothy 1:7). Jesus also told us that if we are seeking God, His Kingdom, and His righteousness, that we our needs will be provided for….no if, ands, or buts about it (Read Matthew 6)!
Yet, why does it still feel so hard to not be afraid during these times? It’s because we choose to believe more strongly in our belief that something bad will happen to us vs. trusting that God will come through for us and will provide for our needs. Is our God that small that we trust more in what we see and what they tell us on the news than in the God who created the universe, the God who literally SPOKE this universe into existence?
Activate the Law of Faith
No circumstance in your life is so big that God can’t come through for you and protect and provide for you. However, He requires our FAITH. God will not work for you without your faith. It’s one of the laws of the universe, the law of faith. It’s engrained throughout all the Scriptures. God worked in people’s lives who had FAITH. You just have to decide who or what your faith is in!
You have to decide whether 2023 is going to be a year that you walk in complete faith in God or in faith in all of the babble that is going around about how bad things are looking according to people who clearly don’t know or trust God!
It’s your choice. You can choose to believe that you won’t be able to buy gas, that you can’t afford food because the prices are just “so high”, that all the resources will be depleted for you, that your government is holding you back, that your business will never take off or it will crumble because “they” (whoever they are) forecasted it (as if they truly know the future – they are not God!), etc.
You decide. You can either believe it or reject it! You can choose to believe the worst or the best. It’s up to you. But, if you believe that you will fail, then you will fail. If you believe you will succeed, you will. You will attract to you, by the law of faith, whatever it is that you decide that you are going to believe. So, what is your faith in?
So, as we step into 2023, I want to give you some strategies that you can use to fight off fear, step into faith, and create/build your successful dream business this year – no matter what any other voices are telling you right now!
I don’t know about you, but I personally decide to reject the world’s “truths” and accept God’s truth instead! I choose to not be effected by the economy or rising prices or the stock market or anything else. I don’t care what is happening around me, I choose to trust God. I choose to trust God that what He says in His word is true – the only real truth! I know He will provide for me when I seek Him and trust Him; that is biblical (seriously, read Matthew 6).
So, I will not be pulled into lack or poverty in 2023! I reject the world’s notion that we have to be in lack, because I have a God who promised to provide for me when I believe Him for it! You can claim this truth too! I’m not talking about necessarily becoming a millionaire or getting rich (though some of you will) – I’m talking about God providing for ALL your needs and never being in lack. We can claim that promise through faith!!
Here are 7 ways to keep fear from ruling in your business in 2023!
#1: Accept Fear
The first step to keeping fear from holding you back is to acknowledge and accept it. The truth is that if you are growing, you will have fear want to creep in. It’s normal. If you think you will get to a point that you will never have any hint of fear again, you are tricking yourself and/or you are not growing.
Fear is normal and sometimes is a good thing because it protects us from things that may harm us and activates the fight-or-flight response, such as if a lion is chasing you through the streets. If you are in a situation where there is a threat, it could just save your life to be a little bit afraid.
When we step out of our comfort zones and do something new, such as starting a business or going to the next level in our business, we will feel a little bit (or a lot) of fear. It becomes unhealthy fear, however, when we fear something so much that we don’t take action, we are not trusting God, and when we are afraid of things that have no real threat to us.
The trick is to accept that fear sometimes shows up. When you accept it, you strip it of it’s power. When you accept this fact, you can then take control and deal with the fear.
As a daughter of the King, you have the ability to stare fear in the face and take action anyway. You never go alone into any territory. God is always with you.
You may have heard the quote that “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear” (Franklin D. Roosevelt). If you are truly following the mission that God has given you, then that thing is much more important than any fear you have. Realize that your purpose is important, your voice matters, your unique calling matters, and you can and should take action whether you have fear or not because it’s just that important. If you don’t step up for your calling, who will?
#2 Identify Your Fears
What exactly are you afraid of? When I was growing up, and even sometimes now in certain situations, I was painfully (and I mean that in the truest sense) shy! In fact, I had worse than shyness, I had social anxiety and social phobia to the point where I couldn’t talk on the phone, give a speech, go to classes where I thought I might get called on, work at a job that involved meeting new people every day, and at one point couldn’t even leave the house. I remember hiding in the bathroom with my Bible when I was supposed to be in Sunday School when I was in junior high, because the teacher was constantly making us play embarrassing games and calling on students.
So, finally in college, I decided I was tired of not being able to talk to anyone and didn’t see myself as ever being able to be successful if I continued down the path I was on.
That’s when I sat down and made a list of all the social situations that I was afraid of, from phone calls to giving a speech. Then I put them in order from the thing that scared me the least to the thing that scared me the most. And, then, the bravery part came in. I decided to go through each thing on my list, one by one, and face my fears.
Was I afraid doing each of them? You bet I was! But, that’s not what counted. It was the fact that I felt the fear and decided to do the things anyway. If I hadn’t chosen to be afraid, I never would have conquered my fears. I would have lived a life of “comfort,” but it was a life where I truly wasn’t really living.
Since then, I have worked with people every since. I became a teacher when I graduated from college, then became a life and business coach, record a podcast and videos, and I speak regularly to groups of people and 1:1 in all kinds of situations from phone calls, to zoom calls, to in-person settings. And, guess what…I’m still nervous sometimes, especially when I meet someone new or am in a situation that is unfamiliar. However, I’ve learned to acknowledge my fears and accept them, name them, and face them. And, the most important thing I do is that I never enter into any social situation without first praying and asking God to go before me, provide the words for me, and give me love and kindness for the person/s I’m going to be speaking to. It changes everything.
I highly recommend this strategy if you struggle with fear in business, especially if you struggle with things like sales and marketing. Make a list of your fears and attack them one at a time, from something easy all the way up to the hardest thing. By the time you get to the hardest thing, it won’t be so hard 🙂
#3 Determine Worst-Case Scenarios
What’s the worst that could happen? Typically, the worst that can happen isn’t so bad and never usually happens.
Take the time to sit down and think this through. What really is the worst thing that could happen? Try journaling about it or talking to a friend you trust.
One of my fears in business used to be that during sales calls that I would be rejected and someone would think I was ridiculous for making them an offer. However, I realized that most people are generally pretty nice. And, when they say “no,” I realized that it wasn’t about me or something I did wrong, but because it just wasn’t aligned for them. When I shifted my thinking about this, it was a game changer. I mean, honestly, do you want customers who you sell to and it doesn’t feel aligned or right for them? I don’t. I want to work with people who really want to work with me and who are the right fit. if someone says “no,” it really is a good thing, because you don’t want someone who isn’t a good fit and it makes way for others who are the right fit to say “yes.”
What are you afraid might happen in your business? That you will fail? That you will succeed and you won’t know what to do with your success? That you will embarrass yourself or be judged? That you won’t make enough money and will have to go back to your other job?
Make a list and evaluate how realistic these scenarios are and try to reframe them the way I reframed how I view my sales calls. Also, make a list of all the good things that might happen? What if the best-case scenario happened? We like to think more about what could go wrong then what could go right sometimes. So, take a moment to focus on all the things that could go right for you and watch a lot of your fears start to shift towards excitement and hope.
#4 Take Action
Action is one of the best ways to beat fear. That means taking that list of fears that you created earlier and start taking on these fears one by one.
With every fear that you conquer, you will get stronger and stronger. The next item on your list won’t seem as challenging as before.
With action comes confidence. The more you take action, the more confident you will become. Pretty soon you will be doing things you never thought you’d be doing.
Let me give you an example. Let’s say you are afraid of doing sales calls. No problem. Start by taking small actions like calling local stores and asking them how late they’re open. Then, start setting up just some general networking type calls with other business owners, no pressure. After you get comfortable with that, schedule just some free, no pressure calls with people. Let’s say you’re a coach. Do some free sessions for people. Don’t try to sell them anything. Just show up and give them a free session. You didn’t lose out by not signing them up because you gained some amazing confidence along the way. Now that you’ve built your confidence, now see how you feel doing an actual sales call. Trust me. It will feel completely different now.
You can literally do this with any fear you have. Just start taking action today and see how quickly you can build your confidence.
#5 Give Your Fears to God
The bible tells us to “not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
#6 Develop a Support System
We aren’t meant to do life alone. Get a support system, someone to talk to and someone to keep you accountable to show up.
This could be with a coach, like myself. It could be a friend you chat with every day and keep each other motivated. It could be joining a Bible study or being involved in a Facebook group like my group with other Christian, faith-based entrepreneurs. It could even be a therapist, psychologist, Pastoral or Biblical counselor.
Just find a support system. Regularly engage. And, keep yourself motivated and accountable. Iron sharpens iron (Proverbs 27:17).
#7 Focus on Your Why
Typically when we are most afraid, our purpose isn’t strong enough. If you’re struggling to show up, it can mean that you either aren’t pursuing something that feels meaningful enough for you or you are acting outside of your true purpose.
This means you need to find a big enough “why” to show up and conquer your fears. Like I mentioned earlier, there was a point where I couldn’t even talk to people. I had to get to a point where the pain of that was strong enough and what I wanted instead was so much greater than any fear I had. I knew God wanted me to work with people, with women, and to help them. So, that purpose gave me a reason to want to conquer my fears of talking to them.
Find your “why.”