Whether it is a job interview, a friendly chat, or a conversation with the self, the one common question that often pops up is ‘What is your/my greatest fear? What is human’s greatest fear?
While some answer to this as water, some name large mammals, and the others choose to name spiders or lizards. Have you ever pondered this question seriously? Without giving in to the common answers that are available on the internet or you have been hearing for long?
So what is Human’s greatest fear?
Before we discuss the main topic, let us all answer some questions.
Do you have dreams?
Have you painted a picture of how your life will be in the next 5 years?
Do you look up to people who are living the life you are dreaming of?
Do you picture yourself in their shoes?
Well, the answer to most of the above questions will be yes, but what about the last one? We often make lists, devise plans and also write our dreams, but how often do we live those dreams. Almost never.
We do want to be very fit, but never see ourselves when we look at a fit person exercising or online or in real life. We want to be rich, but when a Mercedes crosses us, we never imagine ourselves being inside it.
For us these people are different, they are beyond the normal. This is where we see Human’s greatest fear.
The fear of achieving our dreams.
It may sound a little crazy, and a lot more insane, but let’s discuss this further.
Famous Creators on Human’s Greatest Fear of Failure
Do you recognise the fear of being wrong? When among a group of people, the one reason that many people stay quiet and decide to only listen and not input any views, is their fear of being wrong.
In society, people fear taking chances, because what if they are wrong?
This same fear amplifies 10 times to create the fear of failure.
This same fear was once the theme for one of the student’s work exhibitions at Stockholm’s Berghs School of Communication. Some of the beloved creators – artists, designers, writers were asked to share their experience on this subject.
It is very important to embrace failure and to do a lot of stuff — as much stuff as possible — with as little fear as possible. It’s much, much better to wind up with a lot of crap having tried it than to overthink in the beginning and not do itStefan Sagmeister
A characteristic of artistic education is for people to tell you that you’re a genius. […] So everybody gets this idea, if you go to art school, that you’re really a genius. Sadly, it isn’t true. Genius occurs very rarely. So the real embarrassing issue about failure is your own acknowledgement that you’re not a genius, that you’re not as good as you thought you were. […] There’s only one solution: You must embrace failure. You must admit what is. You must find out what you’re capable of doing, and what you’re not capable of doing. That is the only way to deal with the issue of success and failure because otherwise you simply would never subject yourself to the possibility that you’re not as good as you want to be, hope to be, or as others think you areMilton Glaser
Though intended as advice, these words were thought-provoking for all individuals with an idea in their head and a courageous beating heart a
The Scared is Scared
We have often heard elders talk about fear and failure and being scared. What about the little ones?
Picasso once said Every child is an artist. With the help of 6-year-old artists, a Brooklyn-based filmmaker and radio producer Bianca Giaever created a short film ‘The Scared is Scared’.
The little girl very beautifully writes the story. She begins with how ‘START’ must be written in the film and then went on to illustrate the story of a bear and a mouse. In the midst of the story, you see her characters, surroundings changing from time to time.
However, after narrating the story she mentions
If you think something is closing, just stay It’s Okay, I am fine.
She went on to explain her words by saying
The scared is scared of things you like
Kids are a source of inspiration as they unknowingly perform a meditation that bridges the real and the ideal life and in turn, makes them unafraid of failure.
What is the fear of achieving your dreams?
Fear can have a paralyzing effect on our lives. Affects our relationships, career, business and life overall. However, by understanding the cause of fear you can overcome blocks to progress and achieve your dreams.
The fear of achieving your dreams does not mean you do not want to achieve your dreams, but instead, it means that you are still not married to the idea of achieving greatness and living the life you think you deserve.
This can be due to various reasons:
a. Your childhood memories, where you were often reminded how you are not meant for something great.
b. The past failures have shattered your confidence, and you have lost the faith in succeeding.
c. Your dreams are not yours, but instead has been copied from someone close to you.
Here are some books that can also be of help to you.
Must-read books on the Psychology of Being Wrong
The human mind’s sophisticated systems are immensely interesting. We’ve looked at how the mind works before, from how we make decisions to what makes us happy to why music has such an impact on us, and today we’re looking at when it doesn’t.
Here are five excellent books about human’s greatest fear, why we make mistakes, what it means to be wrong, and how to turn wrongness’ lemons into cognitive lemonade.
Why is it so fun to be right?
An enlightening examination of what it means to be mistaken and why humans implicitly believe (or loudly demand) that they are correct in practically every situation.
According to Kathryn Schulz, editor of Grist magazine, an error is an essential human condition that should be appreciated. Being Wrong takes the reader on a journey through the history and psychology of error, from Socrates to Alan Greenspan, and will forever transform the way you think about mistakes, both big and small.
To err is to wander, and wandering is the way we discover the world; and, lost in thought, it is also the way we discover ourselves. Being right might be gratifying, but in the end, it is static a mere statement. Being wrong is hard and humbling, and sometimes even dangerous, but in the end, it is a journey and a story.
WHY WE MAKE MISTAKES
Do you know we humans have some defects in our creation. Our eyes deceive us; our stories tend to change as we relate them; and we all are pretty confident we’re well above average.
In the Books’ Why we make mistakes’, Hallinan delves deep into the psychology, neuroscience, and economics, to understand our flaws.
In this quest he describes how some of the Human characteristics that make us efficient also make us prone to making mistakes. With the help of true stories, the author shows the effects of multitasking and no matter how much we talk of equality, there are mistakes that are specific to only men.
We don’t think our perception is economical; we think it’s perfect. When we look at something, we think we see everything. But we don’t. Same with memory: we might think we remember everything, especially commonly encountered things like the words to the National Anthem, or the details on the surface of a penny—but we don’t. Our brains are wired to give us the most bang for the buck; they strip out all sorts of stuff that seems unimportant at the time. But we don’t know what’s been stripped out. One of the consequences of this is that we tend to be overconfident about the things we think we do know. And overconfidence is a huge cause of the human error.
THE INVISIBLE GORILLA
Gained a lot of eyeballs i the past decade, thanks to the internet and YouTube, The Invisible Gorilla is an account of the experiment conducted by Harvard academics Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons in 1999.
Chances are that you are already aware of the vide where six persons — three in white shirts and three in black shirts — pass basketballs around; you must keep a silent tally of how many passes the white shirts make.
If you haven’t watched it please do. Watch Now
If yu have seen the video, and were able to spot the Gorilla, you are pretty exceptional, as research sows that more than half the people did not notice it.
The Invisible Gorilla summarises Chabris and Simons’ research on the mechanisms underlying “inattentional blindness” and how they affect basic human behaviour. They quickly and elegantly demolish conventional knowledge on everything from memory accuracy to the association between confidence and competence through six striking common illusions of perception.
As fallible human beings, all of us share the impulse to justify ourselves and avoid taking responsibility for any actions that turn out to be harmful, immoral or stupid. Most of us will never be in a position to make decisions affecting the lives and deaths of millions of people, but whether the consequences of our mistakes are trivial or tragic, on a small scale or a national canvas, most of us find it difficult, if not impossible, to say, ‘I was wrong; I made a terrible mistake.’ The higher the stakes — emotional, financial, moral — the greater the difficulty.”
So you see, these are not just words, but instead research too has shown that Human’s greatest fear is fear itself, more than anything else. For us to learn from our mistakes, it is important to first identify these errors and then make deleberate effort.
So do not fear your dreams, fear not having one.