How to Start Your Dream When You’re Scared

UPDATED: April 16, 2020
PUBLISHED: July 21, 2017

People aren’t afraid of starting a dream; they’re afraid of change. Here’s how to get real with ourselves and begin our greatest dreams with boldness.

Related: 7 Ways to Turn Your Dreams Into Reality

1. Be honest.

What’s really holding you back? Can you keep going on and on and claiming it’s fear? Could it be the old excuse that you are a perfectionist? Or is it that you are uncertain or unskilled? What if the real issue is that you’re simply uncomfortable with change? Or that you are simply trapped in a rhythm of how much action you are willing to take each day? More often than not, what prevents people from starting a dream is lack of sustained motivation and discipline. Because armed with those things, you can overcome fear, right? So begin with honesty about what’s preventing you from starting your dream and realize that the only way through it is to begin.

2. Get focused.

Many people have a dream but never reach it. Often, it’s because they didn’t obsess about achieving it enough and match that obsession with initiative. If you have a dream, you have to focus on it so much that you pull it into reality. Challenge yourself to remove distraction and think more often and more deeply about your dream and the steps you’ll have to take to achieve it. Say no to things that don’t align with your dream because time is precious.

3. Create a learning map.

What would you have to learn in order to confidently and competently move toward your goal? This might be the most important question in dream fulfillment. Define the topic, skills and abilities you would have to develop. Then create a learning map to begin mastering them—a real schedule of learning. If you don’t schedule when you will learn something, and have a real deadline for learning a certain level of mastery, then it’s difficult to develop real capability and momentum. Learning is the root of all progress and personal development.

4. Start with three actions per day.

You start every great dream by willing yourself and working yourself each day to move toward it. That’s how you start. There’s no way around it—to succeed more, you have to take more initiative. Everyone can do something each day to move his or her life forward. Make sure you have a set of goals and checklists at the daily level. Even if it’s just something small, do it and cross it off. It’s the small wins that can give you confidence to start taking on the bigger challenges.

You were given your dream for a reason. Let’s stop making excuses and start moving toward our dreams with real focus, intensity and force. That’s why we were gifted with the hunger, drive and desire for that dream—to strive for it, to grow into it, to achieve it, to become your best self along the way. Move with enough consistency toward your dream despite your fears and soon you’ll experience what we call The Charged Life.

Related: 31 Things That Happen When You Finally Decide to Live Your Dreams

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Brendon Burchard

Brendon Burchard is the world’s leading high performance coach and one of the most watched, followed and quoted personal development trainers in history. He is a #1 New York Times best-selling author, a Top 100 Most-Followed Public Figure on Facebook, and star of The Charged Life, a top 10 self-help podcast and the #1 self-help show on YouTube. 5 million people follow him on Facebook and over 75,000,000 have watched his videos. SUCCESS named him “one of the Top 25 Most Influential Leaders in Personal Growth and Achievement.” His most recent book is The Motivation Manifesto. Meet him at