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The Fear of Success in Nurse Business Ownership

February 10, 20233 min read

As the nursing industry is imploding on itself, nurses are making strides in the space of nurse business ownership.

The desire to create your own destiny while setting your own income on your terms seems exciting, but do you have the courage to put yourself out there? Are you willing to risk the public failure to execute your dream? 

Fear of failure is the biggest reason people do not pursue their dreams. But, what if people have a fear of success? Did you know such a thing exists? It takes a certain mindset to take on the risk of any type of business ownership. 

Launching into any business can be daunting, but doing it among an industry that is so defined like nursing is another. When people hear the term “nurse,” they do not think of business. With such challenging times occurring within the nursing industry, many nurses are launching nurse-based businesses. And, they are having a lot of success at doing so! 

As nurses are being pushed to the brink of frustration, we are finding the fears are dissipating. I know when I began 11 years ago, I didn't care if I failed, because I had at least tried. As I sit here now having launched Everyday Divinity (senior foot care business) and the Foot and Nail Institute (online training course for nurses), I can see how fear has no room for success to grow. 

I think culturally, we have our own preconceived idea of what nursing looks like. We don’t always think of nurse business ownership when we think of nursing roles. However, as that is changing, let’s explore some of the fear’s nurses may go through when launching. 

I have discussed previously how nurses may have a self-sabotaging effect when building their business, but what if that nurse self-sabotages out of the fear of success? What if everything goes right? What happens when we walk in that lane of happiness and success? Are we ready to receive it? When you have spent years in an abusive relationship such as the nursing profession, it can be difficult to accept the joys that business ownership can bring you. 

With failure comes accountability, but so does success. Some nurses may fear backlash from their peers, friends, and family. Some nurses fear losing friends. The nurse sister/brotherhood is a bond like none other. As nurses begin to explore different paths that are outside of the walls they have been accustomed to, it can look very different. The comforts of those relationships we have depended on may begin to fade as we take a different path professionally. Fear of criticism combined with having everyone watching can really paralyze your efforts. Not everyone is going to be cheering you on … in fact, it’s most likely the opposite. Use that negativity from the naysayers as fuel. It’s what pushed me up those mountains through the years. 

When you change your perception from flight to fight mode, you can become a powerful force. Some people become debilitated by fear of change. This is a huge obstacle to overcome. But isn’t change what you are craving? That’s what’s driving this train after all … a better lifestyle, better career, or a chance to make a difference in the world! 

It's important that you surround yourself with those who support your efforts. Or those who at least get it. Hence why I love mentors … because they have been through it themselves. This doesn’t mean you walk away from your inner circle (otherwise you will look crazy), but just be selective of the time and the company you keep. You do not have to tell everyone of your business plans. I think less eyes on me in the beginning kept the stress low for me. Not everyone deserves to know your plans. 

As nurses, we are sharers of information. Sometimes we overshare to a fault. Just know the information you share will be shared with others. There are many scary stages to building a business, stepping into success shouldn’t be one of them.

Learn more about nurse business ownership with the help of The Foot and Nail Institute®.

nurse business ownershipnursing industrybusiness ownership
Heather Wilson is a former bedside nurse turned nurse entrepreneur. She is the owner of Everyday Divinity, and the Foot and Nail Institute.

Heather Wilson

Heather Wilson is a former bedside nurse turned nurse entrepreneur. She is the owner of Everyday Divinity, and the Foot and Nail Institute.

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