Richard Branson On Overcoming Fear

Branson talk

There's one thing that can stop anyone in their tracks, and that is fear. It could be a fear of anything from flying to starting a business or changing your job... we all have our own. When some of the legends of the world have achieved so much, it's easy to forget that they know this very well. Here is a great insight from Sir Richard Branson on fear, and facing his own...

"We all know that fear can be absolutely crippling, especially phobias. Learning to overcome one's phobias can also be useful in the business world, helping you to learn to tell the difference between less-than-rational fear and very reasonable alarm...Everyone has his own personal demons, but experts seem to agree that two of the most common phobias are fear of flying and of public speaking.

For me, [it was] public speaking. This used to really torment me, but it has become better... Overcoming fears is often just a matter of practice, of being willing to try new things, and of facing uncertainty.

Franklin D. Roosevelt was right on target about phobias when he said, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Hiding from fear only makes it stronger. So enlist allies if necessary and face your fears."

As Branson states, sometimes overcoming your fears is a case of consistent action - practice, combined with surrounding yourself with the right "allies", in other words a strong support network. Will you make mistakes and get it wrong? Absolutely! But the more baby steps you take, eventually you will overcome the fear!

For more on how Branson's mentor Freddie Laker helped him face his fear of public speaking as well as how Branson helped Whoopi Goldberg overcome her fear of flying and Desmond Tutu learn how to swim, check out Richard Branson's article here...

Learning From Legends...

    It's surprising that Richard Branson had a fear of public speaking, isn't it? What are some of the fears that you feel are holding you back in your life, career and/or business?

    Image of Richard Branson courtesy of Jarle Naustvik @ Flickr