13 Things Fearless People Do Differently

pic monkey fearless people

Fearless people succeed because they think, speak and act differently than those who stay stuck and make excuses.

People ask me, all the time, how I became bold and courageous. There are a couple of reasons. I was one of ten children; number six from the top. As a young child, I learned to speak up and take action in order to get my needs met.

By the time I was 22 years old, I was married and already a mom with four daughters. I traded my freedom for a ton of responsibility, without thinking much about it. I grew up very quickly. It took a lot of guts, courage and determination.

Today, I have a wonderful family and a massive amount of experience with living fearlessly.

No matter where you are in your life, you can act your way out of a fearful situation. You can thrive.

If being bold and courageous is something that interests you, here's what fearless people do differently.

1. Be authentic, scared and vulnerable. Don’t hide how you feel. Don’t pretend. Be who you are. Face and embrace your fear. Let your uniqueness shine. Being real is very attractive.

2. Learn from failure. When you mess up; learn from your mistake and try again. There is no reason to be ashamed, embarrassed or fearful. Failure builds character. It creates epic tales of grand adventure. Failure leads to freedom. Fail your way to success. The sooner. The better.

3. Challenge convention. Don’t be afraid to go against the grain. Leo Babauta told me a few years ago that his plan is to do the opposite of what everyone else is doing.  He recently lowered the price of his Sea Change Program from $26 to $10 a month. 

4. Connect with others. Really connect. Get away from your electronics and connect face-to-face. Check in with people. Listen for what others need; meet those needs. Go the extra mile without expecting a thing in return. 

5. Speak up. Don’t be afraid to be heard. State your opinion. Take a stand. Let others know who you are and what you’re all about. You count. You matter. Fearless people know that! 

6. Take action. The wisdom and knowledge you have won’t count for much until you put it into action. Don’t read another book. Embrace fear. Act. Don’t go to another conference. Act. Put your dream on your daily to-do-list. 

7. Do what it takes. Take risks. Do the things you’re afraid to do. Dare. Go after what you want. Don’t spend your time over thinking or over analyzing. Don’t hold back; ask for support. Bet on yourself. 

8. Ask for help. Ask someone to mentor you. Ask for direction. Ask for what you want, when you want it. Most people love to help others. If the answer is “no,” ask someone else. Fearless people are good at asking for and receiving help. Fearful people stop after one rejection.

9. Learn to trust yourself. Keep the commitments you make to yourself and others. Do what you say you’re going to do. Write down your promises so you don’t forget them. Follow through. When you can trust yourself, you’re more likely to trust others. 

10. Learn new skills. Learn to enjoy challenges. When I wanted to be a better parent, I took parenting classes. When I decided to be a professional speaker, I joined Toastmasters. Currently, I’m taking a class called: “Leveraging Up,” It will take me to the next level both personally and professionally. 

11. Shrink your fear. Take your power back. Stand tall. Look fear in the eye. Mentally see it get smaller and smaller. See yourself get taller and taller. Hold your head up high, pull your shoulders back and act confident. Soon you’ll feel that way too! 

12. Expect the best. Expect to succeed. Believe it will happen. Create a mental movie with an amazing ending. What if you believed the best is yet to come? How would you feel and what would you do today?

13. Don't give up. Try again. Brainstorm solutions. Do something different. Look for the lesson. Look at the problem from a different perspective. Take a break and begin again. Go beyond the fear of not succeeding. Never give up. Never.

Please share your thoughts below. 

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Sandra Pawula May 12, 2013, 8:51 pm

    I really love your very first suggestion, Tess – just to be real! It’s amazing how much better life flows when you take that leap.

    • Tess May 13, 2013, 3:47 am

      Being real does make life flow. And when life flows it’s so much easier! Have a great week!

  • Patrik Edblad May 13, 2013, 2:47 am

    I think our closest connections play a huge role in how fearless we are. If your friends never act when facing fear chances are you won’t either, but if you surround yourself with people who are fearless soon you’ll be fearless as well.
    Great list Tess, thanks for sharing!

  • Tess May 13, 2013, 3:49 am


    That’s a good point. So bring on some fearless friends everyone! Thanks for your support.

    • akash July 30, 2013, 1:46 am

      Hey patriik,
      i just want your help as i learned from above points.
      I am affraid to talk on phone calls why can you help me.

      • Tess July 30, 2013, 8:31 am


        You need to practice. Practice speaking to people you know. Practice. Practice. Practice. Then call people you don’t know very well. Practice. Practice. Then call people you don’t know very well at all. Practice. The only way to get good is to take action. What’s the worst that can happen?

  • Anne-Sophie May 13, 2013, 8:40 am

    Fantastic tips, Tess. I think authenticity is the biggest factor as you can only be authentic when you know yourself and when you know yourself, you can trust yourself. Once you trust yourself, you can be fearless.

    • Tess The Bold Life May 14, 2013, 5:46 am

      Authenticity and self-trust do go hand in hand. Kinda like cupcakes and frosting;)
      Not sure I ever thought of it that way before. Thanks for your insight!

  • Galen Pearl May 13, 2013, 10:21 am

    I think getting over the fear of failure is a big one. I recently wrote a post about a slogan we use in martial arts training — Invest in loss. Great success comes from being willing to learn without our egos getting in the way.

    • Tess The Bold Life May 14, 2013, 5:47 am

      I love that…invest in loss. Especially because our ego tempts us to run from it. Thanks for sharing that easy to remember tip.

  • Elle May 13, 2013, 11:18 am

    Such wise words Tess. Love ’em all…and as I know I’ve heard you say…penguin steps count…moving forwards on baby step at a time.

    Love Elle

  • Cathy Taughinbaugh May 13, 2013, 2:43 pm

    Hi Tess,

    Love the suggestions. Take action resonates with me. We can think about things all we want, but at some point, we need to take action to be fearless. Thanks!

  • David Stevens May 13, 2013, 3:28 pm

    Hi TESS,
    A lot of great things here … always a fan of Asking Questions and Challenging Convention. Great work, thankyou.
    Be good to yourself
    Life Coach. Listener. Solution Finder.

  • Suzie Cheel May 13, 2013, 5:35 pm

    Learning to trust yourself is big and i sometimes wonder whay i still seem to be working on it 🙂
    Great list thanks Tess

    • Tess The Bold Life May 14, 2013, 5:50 am

      I think everyone works on it. Life’s a process and journey, not a destination. But you already know that!!! xo

  • Sebastian Aiden Daniels May 13, 2013, 11:25 pm

    I use to be deathly afraid of so much. I was paralyzed from action because of fear of failure or I’d take action and then when trouble hit I would give up and reinforce that I was a loser and shouldn’t try anything.

    Learning to trust oneself is very difficult at least for me because my self wants to sabotage everything I do. I am slowly getting to where I need to be though.

    Thanks for the post and the reminder to push through fear.

  • Tess The Bold Life May 14, 2013, 5:49 am

    Hi Sebastian,
    Good for you…just the opposite of loser..in fact you’re one step closer to success when you fail. And it takes courage to move towards success. Thanks for sharing.

  • Chef Bob May 15, 2013, 7:07 am

    What have I done In my lifetime. I never wanted to be famous, only happy. A successful career, a loving relationship, a Blog, and a book. Over the course of my lifetime I’ve earned a million dollars, and an able to retire at 62, comfortably. I have followed these basic principles all my life and they do work. I’m not rich, famous or well known but I can say I’m happy overall with my life. And I still throw a mean Bar B Que on the fly if I need to! Good advice, Follow it and you’ll be a success in life.

  • Jorge May 15, 2013, 12:26 pm

    I am 40, and I always tell my wife to live the life she wants without paying too much attention of what people say, but there is something internally that prevent her to do everything she wants. Fear of failure is what I know prevent her. I have told her that people will always talk, no matter what you do.


  • Steve Hayes May 15, 2013, 12:51 pm

    I really love your post but among the list your put I am really sympathetic with learning from failure because I think that is one of the keys to personal growth; taking action because without taking action you will not get anywhere and learning new skills because this is the best way to avoid getting stuck in the dangerous comfort zone!
    Great list! Thanks for that.

  • Wade Balsdon May 16, 2013, 4:07 am

    Wow, you have achieved much in spite of starting a family at a young age, Tess. I cam across your site while visiting Ken’s site and reading his interview with you. You are an inspiration to all. I look forward to receiving updates from your blog 🙂

  • Chang May 16, 2013, 5:23 am

    Learn to trust yourself <— that's exactly what i'm doing.
    Thank you for an inspiration. It keeps me motivated to follow my calling.
    Best wishes to you!

  • Jeromey May 17, 2013, 3:22 am

    I think taking right action is one of the main attribute that fearless people have. A lot of people say they want to do this and that, but lacks that action taking muscle so to speak. Great post Tess.

  • Travis Scott May 20, 2013, 10:26 am

    Great stuff…I love them all, but being authentic is totally my favorite! Unfortunately I see people all the time trying to be someone they are not…they’re living someone else’s dream…or they are putting on a facade to impress other people. If you are authentic in life…then you don’t have much else to worry about.

    • Tess May 20, 2013, 11:19 am

      Hi Travis,

      Good for you! Fortunately we only have to live our own authentic life and other’s can learn by example:) Thanks for stopping by!

  • Dave Goettsch May 24, 2013, 9:21 pm

    This list is a great tool for breaking through barriers in your life. It is amazing how often we go through life letting others guide us and place our limitations. The reason that fortune favors the bold is because they refuse to be led, and refuse to accept any limitation. The only limitations we have in our life are the ones we place on ourselves, or allow someone to place on us. Most of the time these limits are a far cry from what we are actually capable of. Once you begin speak up, have faith in yourself and carve our own way through the forest, there is no feeling like it in the world. Instead of asking why in your daily life, you start to ask why not? Beautiful article! I write on many of the same principles of personal development and empowerment, i look forward to reading more of your content.
    Dave (Personal Growth Project)

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