Choreographer and dancer Twyla Tharp writes in her book The Creative Habit
that fear is a natural part of any creative endeavor.
Why didn’t you speak up during that brainstorming session at work? When that idea for a new project came to you, why didn’t you pursue it?
There’s nothing wrong with having fears – the mistake is to let them paralyze you before you begin.
For Tharp, if you examine your concerns closely, you should be able to identify and break down the ones that are holding you back.
She names fives of the most common fears people face when they’re doing something new, along with some helpful perspectives for dealing with them:
I’m not sure how to do it: Doing is better than not doing, plus “we’re not talking about constructing the Brooklyn Bridge.” If you try and it doesn’t work, learn from your mistakes and use a different approach next time.
People will think less of me: Not the people who matter – your friends and family will still love you.
It will take too much time: Maybe, but if it’s something you really want to do, make the time. Tharp cites the golfer Ben Hogan’s idea that “Every day you don’t practice, you’re one day further from being good.”
It will cost money: Once your basic needs are met, money is there to be used: What better investment than in yourself?
It’s self-indulgent: So what? How often do you indulge yourself? Tharp notes that “You won’t be of much value to others if you don’t learn to value yourself and your efforts.”