3 Tips For Entrepreneurs To Manage Fear And Anxiety

The word fear and a ladder - 3d illustration

If you’re an entrepreneur, feeling anxiety and fear is probably something you experience regularly. When I say regularly, I mean daily, in some cases.

Anxiety is caused by fear, and I think of it as fear’s younger, impetuous cousin.

For entrepreneurs, managing fear is the most important thing she/he has to learn to maintain her/his mental health, which matters because a positive frame of mind leads to better results for her/his business.

No matter how old you are, anyone can suffer with anxiety. Especially when it comes to making business decisions, it can be quite difficult. With anxiety, you’re always overthinking and that never works in your favour. I was speaking to a friend of mine who mentioned that I should looking into the idea of using cbd oil to help calm my nerves and manage my anxiety effectively. I’ve yet to give it a go, but I did read something like a cbd pure review, which sounds promising. Anything that I can find to help is always a bonus.

Conversely, a negative mindset, brought on by fear, keeps you from making connections you need for your business because successful people don’t want to associate with negative people. And a negative mindset often prohibits you from receiving the inspiration you need to move your business forward.

In the worst case, fear leads to depression, which if not treated, can lead to the unthinkable.

How fear shows itself

I suspect fear and anxiety show themselves differently for every entrepreneur, but I’m not a therapist, so I can only speak for myself.

For fifteen years I had a recurring dream of me being in high school or college, and nervous I might not graduate because I wasn’t attending class, or didn’t complete a required assignment. I would wake from that dream saying to myself that the dream was nonsense because I did in fact graduate high school and college, and did so with honors in the case of the latter.

In 2012, after making the choice to be a full-time entrepreneur, the dreams were so frequent and the anxiety monsters were churning in my belly so ferociously, I decided to see a therapist to understand what the dreams were all about.

After a few months of therapy, it was clear the dreams were just fear. Fear of failure. Fear of being inadequate in some way. My therapist gave me some techniques to overcome these fears and now I am thinking of getting a Leesa mattress to get a deeper sleep to help stop the dreams.

3 things I do to manage fear and anxiety

1. I aspire to simply recognize that I am afraid or anxious when I’m feeling that way. I don’t beat up on myself or get upset about it. I just wave hello to my old friends, fear and anxiety.

Deepak Chopra says we should be the silent observer, which he describes as the following:

That wise part of yourself that is able to calmly and objectively observe a situation, notice when you are being triggered, and consciously choose how you want to respond.

2. I then respond to the fear in one of two ways. The first thing I do-and this happens every morning before I get out of bed and every night when my head hits the pillow-is silently affirm the three things in my vision board.

  1. I AM a great dad to my twins, and a great husband to my wife.
  2. I AM a successful entrepreneur and my business will sell for $50 million dollars in the next nine months (I’ve been counting this down for the last eighteen months).
  3. I AM a creative, spiritual being.

Here’s my vision board.

3. And finally, there is meditation, which is the only thing that consistently and sustainably keeps the anxiety monsters from churning my stomach to a pulp. Here’s a good book by the late, great Wayne Dyer about how to meditate.

Just five to fifteen minutes a day of meditation makes all the difference for me to have a calmer, more positive mindset.

Don’t let your fears hold you back

It’s ok to be afraid, but don’t let it keep you from moving forward. Fear and anxiety can do that. They can prevent entrepreneurs from achieving all of the goals they want to achieve. That’s why it’s so important to manage them before they begin ruining your career. To manage fear and anxiety, it might be worth researching the benefits of marijuana. Lots of people talk about marijuana’s ability to reduce fear and anxiety, which is why it might be a good idea to look into it more. If you do decide to try it out, you could even follow this guide about making homemade pipes for a fun way to smoke the marijuana. That should reduce some fear and anxiety. If it doesn’t, keep researching until you find the method that works best for you. Why? Because even if your fears come to pass, you have the strength to endure. And because a strange thing happens when you face your fears: you become a stronger, more incredible human being.

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Feature image credit: Vic Fear The word fear and a ladder – 3d illustration


  1. Thanks for writing this James, so true. Awesome tips. I really connect with tip #2 and have been doing something similar with the “5 minute journal” but I like the connection to the vision board.

    50M in 9 months… You got this!! 😉 I’ll be praying for you brother.

  2. James, you had me when you started talking about the dreams. When I left the corporate world, now 10 years ago, to start my own company, I started having the very same ones. I looked forever for dream interpretation guides, but never found anything definitive. I’m going to crib off of your findings that the were about fear of failure.

    After being on this path–and even exiting via acquisition–I don’t find anxiety ending anytime soon. It’s the way things are when you live life pushing the envelope. So yes, you risk takers better figure out how to manage it. This is great.

    Also: my vision board I’ve had up for 6 years. Didn’t quite work out the way I envisioned, but, as a friend of mine once told me: You have to give up what it looks like. My addition: But having a vision at least points you somewhere.

    1. That’s amazing you were having the same dreams.

      I love what you said about getting used to and managing anxiety, too.

      I’m with you on the vision board. Perhaps the key is to be intentional, yet detached.

      I did a great Blab with Mario Armstrong last week where we talked about not having expectations to manage mental health-such a paradoxical approach.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

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