I’ve been learning more about Jimmy Iovine’s knack for identifying new markets. I watched an interview he gave in which he shared what’s allowed him to continually succeed: he harnesses fear. He “turned it into a tailwind instead of a headwind.”
Jimmy went on to say that fear is a powerful force that can work for you or against you. If you can harness fear, you have an asset that gives you a big advantage. Most people don’t know how to harness fear, so this powerful force works against them. Jimmy has trained himself to lean into fear when he feels it (Mike Tomlin has a similar approach). Everyone is always afraid of something. The “something” changes over time, so fear is never gone. You can’t eliminate it, so harnessing it is the best strategy.
I agree with Jimmy on this. Fear has been a powerful force that helped me accomplish things that I didn’t think I could. I’m still working to harness it as well as he does. But I’ve gotten better at recognizing when I’m fearful or uncomfortable as I’m making a decision. If there’s a fear-producing or uncomfortable option, I usually go with that option. Nine times out of ten, it turns out that I’m happy I made that choice and I grow because of that decision.
Is fear your headwind, or your tailwind?