Fear Setting

New Year’s Resolutions 
With the new year brings new year’s resolutions. By this time, they may even be starting to feel like a distant memory. In fact, University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals. Let’s not fall into this trap! This year instead of new year’s resolutions replace them with ‘Fear Setting’ (An exercise recently popularized by Tim Ferris)

Fear Setting

Whether it’s starting your own business, asking for a raise, or training for a marathon, the fear of failure can cripple you — if you let it.

To overcome fear, you must first drag your fears out into the open and confront them.

Fear setting is all about embracing your fears! A simple process in which you write down and quantify your fears. What is the worst-case scenario? (often it is not as bad as you think). Once identified work back from that scenario, how can you mitigate these the consequences and then how could you recover from this scenario.

Prior to identifying & mitigating the fear, you should first do a personal analysis of your life. Best way to do this is to apply the Pareto principle (also known as the 80/20 rule) The principle states that 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. I personally love this principle and apply it in my life in many different contexts: Work productivity boaster, Training, nutrition etc.

Follow these 3 steps to fear-setting:

  1. Do an 80/20 analysis:
  • “Which 20% of sources are causing 80% of my problems and unhappiness?”
  • “Which 20% of sources are resulting in 80% of my desired outcomes and happiness?”
  • “Which 20% of sources are consuming 80% of my time?”
  1. Write a to-do and not-to-do list:
  • “Why haven’t I done my most important to-do?”
  • “Why haven’t I stopped doing my most important not-to-do?”
  1. Define your fears clearly (Once identified ask yourself this series of questions):
  • What is the worst-case scenario if I did what I’m considering?
  • What are all the things I could do to minimize that from happening?
  • If the worst-case scenario happened, what steps could I take to minimise repair the damage


“The distance between dreams and reality is called action”