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Overcoming the fear of failure

Whether this is your first year in college or you are a senior preparing for graduation, we all tend to feel the fear of failure creeping up on us every once in a while. At a point in the year where it’s crucial to maintain focus and your determination – you can’t let the fear of failure hold you back. You need to learn that failure, itself, can be one of your greatest friends. When you fail you learn from mistakes, stratigize of how to build yourself back up, and come back more strong-minded than ever.

Don’t get nervous if you accidentally mess up during a career fair or bomb your first exam. For instance, during my first semester in college I admittedly made the HUGE mistake of keeping a company’s name in the objective of my resume – while I proceeded to hand these resumes out to x-number of companies. You can imagine my horror when one recruiter finally called me out on it. Let’s just say I failed at that career fair, but I learned to analyze every detail of my resume, apply to companies online (since I ruined my career fair chances), and own up to my mistake. Which leads to the first lesson: Embrace mistakes as if they were an old friend, with open arms. Fix them and move on, do not become a dweller.

Discovering your passions and ambitions this early in life can be difficult; however it’s never too soon to start trying to figure it out. Think about the things you love to do or the schoolwork that you enjoy the most – then reach out for help. Don’t be afraid to talk with your advisor, career/academic counselors, or the CCO to get help in your search. There is always something more to learn – so never stop asking for advice or continually discovering your passions.

Lastly, try anything that forces you out of your comfort zone at least once. Move to a new city for an internship, take a higher level course, or study abroad. It’s terrifying when you are the first of your friends interning or moving to a new city. You’ll be worried that you’ll miss out on summer concerts and miss family and friends terribly at times, but you’ll learn more about yourself in those vulnerable moments than you thought. At the end of a new experience, you will have developed new skills, explored a new city, or met new people. Don’t stop seeking out and adding rich experiences to your life!

Just remember to get yourself out there and don’t be afraid to make mistakes!

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