Fear of Failure


My IELTS test is 10 days away and fear of failure has started putting me down. While sleeping at night, I mumble, what I am going to do at the test centre. I have been learning English since primary school and now the time has arrived to get judged.

During 2009 when I was in the second year of my undergraduate studies, I decided to take IELTS test so I could secure a scholarship in a European university and let my dream come true of pursuing a research degree in communication technologies. I secured the scholarship! But, in China, and in a discipline in which I was not going to be an expert. I assumed that with the passage of time, everything will become easier but I was wrong. To complete my dissertation, I had to study the Chinese Language for a year. It was a must and clearly written on my admission notification.

I excelled in language classes and started working in my laboratory but odds were against me and I ended up writing my thesis in English medium. I returned home last year and started working in a Chinese company. The company barely had any humanity toward employees, thus the cake was not worth the candle. I realised that it is not them or someone else who is messing with my career. It’s me who hasn’t finished what I started eight years ago. I was appearing in IELTS exam and wanted a scholarship in an English speaking country to accomplish my academic and professional goals.

Time is not a rubber to elongate as elastic. -Amar Jaleel

I realised that I am choking myself-myself. It is not someone else, and it has never been. Absorbing all negative energies around me and going against all decision makers of my life, without blaming them, I resigned from my unworthy position and time travelled back to 2009. I looked for my IELTS practice material in my room which I bought in March of the same year and found them intact, no one ever touched them. As soon as possible I booked my seat with British Council and got the test schedule (she-dyoo-ul). The exam is on 17th of June. I have taken this decision because I want to live, not merely survive.

And, now here, I am thinking what if I failed the exam (Less than band 7 in any module is a failure in my case)? What will be the consequences of my decision? Where it’ll lead me? What if everything goes wrong again? How I’ll confront the aftereffects? Fear of failure, it seems hard to tackle.

How about you, my friend? Have you made a decision in your life which had taken you years back? Have you ever regretted about not finishing something you started long ago?


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16 Responses to “Fear of Failure”

  1. Good for you! An expression in English is “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” It means if you don’t ever try you guarantee that you will not succeed. Best of luck on your test!

    1. Thank you very much, Margaret. Yes, it is. I told my dad that I’ll be regretting forever if I do not try at least once. His blessings just made the resignation process easier for me.

  2. Your English is lovely – similarly to my Nana, who is originally French/Italian speaking Arabic, you have little quirks in your writing which show that English is not your first language, but this is such a lovely thing to embrace, it’s an endearing quality to keep your roots within your language.
    I’m sure you’ll ace your exam, best of luck to you! I’ll follow you’re journey to see how you go!

    1. Dear KT Marie,

      Thank you very much for the wishes and becoming part of my journey. Yes, English is not my first language and I am also not Arab. 🙂 I am glad that you had a familiar feeling while reading the blog.

      I am looking forward to seeing you here again.

  3. Good luck! Perhaps the fact that you kept all of your IELTS material meant that you were never planning on fully abandoning that dream. Go get it!! 🙂

  4. As I was reading your well-written piece, the quote that came to my mind was the late Randy Pausch’s – “If you live your life the right way, the karma will take care of itself. And your dreams will come to you!”
    May your dreams come true!

  5. Thank you so much for sharing this. Your opening sentence grabbed my attention. And you should be proud. It was written well enough that it took me a moment to realize that English is not your first language. Great job!

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