Setting fears rather than goals

Robi Kate Miranda
3 min readJan 23, 2022

It’s very normal for us to set goals and resolutions most especially during the start of the year, month, or week.

But have you ever thought about setting your fears?

A few years ago, I still vividly remember that I intentionally not submitted my application for a conference where I know for sure that it can benefit me when I joined.

Why? Because I was afraid of failure. I was afraid of not getting in. In return, I self-rejected. This was a nightmare and I still regret it up until today because back then, I let fear control me.

So why set your fears now?

Photo by Yan Krukov from Pexels

A few days ago, I’ve learned about this concept from Tim Ferriss — an American entrepreneur, investor, author, podcaster, and lifestyle guru.

He said that through writing your fears, you’re understanding whatever’s causing you anxiety. Our brains are wired to think. Sometimes, to process our thoughts, it’s better to write our insights and ideas on paper — may it be digital or physical, to help us visualize.

When thinking about our fears, what’s the worst thing that could happen?

What can you do to prevent those things from happening?

If the worst-case scenario happens, are there ways to mitigate, lessen, or repair the damage?

Here’s the fear-setting template inspired by Tim Ferris.

Page 1 of Fear-Setting Worksheet
Page 2 of Fear-Setting Worksheet
Page 3 of Fear-Setting Worksheet

Upon doing this exercise, I realized that my own brain tends to overthink fears of mine. When I don’t write them, they consume me to the point that I stop thinking and weighing that doing something and getting out of my comfort zone is much more beneficial than staying in the status quo.

I can define, prevent, and repair my fears.

More than anything else, I can benefit from my attempt or even partial success.

Rather than thinking about the cost of action, Tim Ferriss emphasized that we should take into consideration the cost of inaction.

What would happen if you do not do the things that you want to do?

Sometimes, leaving the status quo for better opportunities while also taking calculated risks can benefit us in the long run. It’s better to fail and learn than not try it at all.

So, what are you afraid of? Leaving a toxic relationship? Quitting your job that does not pay well? Starting a new business venture?

What are you waiting for? Do it now. This is the sign you’re looking for.

“Change can be scary, but you know what’s scarier? Allowing fear to stop you from growing, evolving, and progressing.” — Mandy Hale

For more information, here’s Tim Ferriss’ TED video link.



Robi Kate Miranda

Hi, I'm Robi! Welcome to my blog. Read about my advocacies, self-help tips, productivity strategies, and everything in between.