What if I get fired?
What if I fail my coworkers?
What if I fail at my goals?
I’ve recently gone through a challenging month in my working life. I’ve asked myself all of these questions. Repeatedly.
Some advice I received from a friend clarified everything for me.
“You get to create every day… Don’t worry about the unknown. Seize the known and make the most of it – while having fun.”
This came at a time when the unknown was all I had to look forward to – new challenges, obligations, and questions coming faster than I could handle them. But this short line calmed me down.
The worst that could happen? Well, all of these failures I mentioned could have happened. But would that have been so bad? The reason I care about succeeding is that I care about creating.
Here’s the thing: I can create anywhere and at any time and under most conditions. None of the failures above can end that, and all a challenge can do is make me more resilient.
I still realized that I could fail any day (and it was important for me to realize that), but I stopped feeling chained to that fear of failure. After I read that email, I saw my day not as a battle against unfavorable odds but as an opportunity to make new things in new ways.
You know how I said this was one of the most challenging months in my professional life? It was also the most rewarding and meaningful. I realized that I have coworkers whose respect is worth wanting. I’ve had a challenge great enough that failure would be a real disappointment.
All I have to do is keep creating value.
You’ll probably have something like this in your working life one day. When you do, chill out. If you’re a creator, you get to keep doing the same thing you’ve always done and always will do: create.