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Omilola Oshikoya: Do It Afraid

Omilola Oshikoya



Do it afraid, jump and build your wings on the way down” – Paul Martinelli

What comes to mind when you think of the topic “Doing it Afraid?” FEAR right? Well, that’s exactly what it is.
What is fear?

You may have heard that FEAR is the acronym for ‘False Evidence Appearing Real’, which is exactly what it is.
Growing up we had financial challenges. I grew up never wanting to experience lack and decided to work my way silly. After a couple of years, I got my dream job in my dream company and loved it. However, I had kids and didn’t get a chance to see them often. Also, I wasn’t fulfilled and so I began to feel uneasy. Then life began to happen – my mum was diagnosed with a brain tumor for the second time and I had to travel with her abroad for about 6 weeks which gave me plenty of time to think. Just before that, a school mate who was so full of life passed away. Shortly after, the Dana crash happened and many young people I knew passed away.

This, coupled with some other life experiences, made me realize that life and time are both precious. What if I passed away? What have I done with the time that has been given to me? Have I spent enough time with those that matter to me? What’s the point of doing something that didn’t bring joy, fulfillment? What legacy am I leaving? I began to think of leaving my job but then I was afraid. My job was my security; I didn’t want to live the life of my childhood. My job was my identity, what would people think? What if I failed? I prayed and sought God and He showed up. He told me to resign. I said to Him but I don’t have a plan B. I don’t know what I want to do or what I’m good at. Then He took me to Genesis Chapter 12 when he told Abraham to leave his family and the land he knew to the land that He would show him. That was my cue. I did it afraid.

What are the types of fear people face?

Fear of Failure
“What if I fall? What if you fly?”
It is okay to fail; failure is a necessary part of the process to success. Peter Drucker says “fail fast, fail first and fail often.” We are created to learn by failure. How does a baby learn how to walk? By falling and trying again. The only way you know how to do anything is to first fail at it. Then you would know how not to do it.
Most of the world’s most successful people were experts at failing. Walt Disney was fired by a newspaper editor because he “lacked imagination and had no good ideas.” Bill Gates and Steve Jobs dropped out of school. Thomas Edison made at least a thousand attempts to create the light bulb.

Fear of Trading Security for The Unknown
After I informed one of my mentors, that I was leaving the company which I loved so much, he was intrigued and wanted to speak with me. He proceeded to tell me his own story. When he was about 31, he resigned from a well-paid job to move to Nigeria to do something in the asset management space. This was about 20 years ago when the financial industry in Nigeria was very premature. He left the security of a well-paid, stable job for the unknown. Today this company is the largest non-bank financial institution in Nigeria.

Fear of What Others Will Say/Think
People fulfilling other people’s dreams such as studying medicine because your father is a doctor usually fit into this category. I recently read an article about a hospice worker who shared on the “Top 5 regrets of the dying”. The most common regret was “I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me”.

Fear of Not Being Able To Cope Financially
This is what I believe may be the most common fear. Trust me you would be fine. You will just have to make some TEMPORARY adjustments. It’s all about delayed gratification as opposed to instant satisfaction. Would you rather pay now and play later or play now and pay later?

So how do you do it afraid?

Change Your Belief System
I recently read an interesting story about the elephant. Do you know how trainers control massive 5 tonne elephants and keep them from running away? When the elephants are babies, they tie one foot to a wooden post that is secured in the ground. The elephant tries to get away but because it is not yet strong it is unable to break away and it gives up. From that moment on whenever the elephant’s leg is secured it believes it cannot get away – even though it is able to and has been able to for a long time. Humans are like that. We are all programmed by our self-belief. We are limited by our thinking and what limits us is fear. However, fear is a thief and will limit us from breaking away and accomplishing our God given desires.

Believe in Yourself & In Your Dreams
Paul Martinelli says, “When your belief matches your potential then your life will change”. “You cannot out-perform your own self-belief”. The Bible says “As a man thinketh so is he”.

Build Your Faith
Think positive thoughts. Stay away from negative people. Celebrate your victories. Believe what God says about you.

Do It Now
Most people like myself, want to wait till everything is perfect but remember while you are waiting for things to be perfect someone else is learning from their mistakes. I read a story of a young, struggling actor. He wanted to write a script about a young, under-dog boxer who surprised everyone by winning the title but he thought no one would buy into the story. In 1975, he watched a match where a relatively unknown underdog Chuck Wepner, knocked Mohammed Ali to the ground in the 9th round. The match lasted 15 rounds and even though Mohammed Ali retained his title, the young boxer almost defeated him. The young struggling actor was inspired by this match and began to write the script that night. He was done in three days and that movie, Rocky, won three Oscars and launched the actor, Sylvester Stallone, into a multi-million dollar career.

Take The First Step
This is what I did; see where I am today. A few weeks ago, I was invited by one of the world’s top consulting firms, to speak to its staff on financial planning. I was invited alongside top investment houses in the country, one of which was the company I resigned from. When I resigned I didn’t have a plan but I was secure in God’s plan for me.

Build a Dream Team
You need to surround yourself with a dream team. People that believe in you. You need a mentor, a coach, a confidant, a buddy, a sponsor, and a Judas (someone to keep you accountable and remind you that you can’t share your dreams with everyone).

In conclusion, I hope you are inspired to send that manuscript to the publisher even though you are afraid it would be turned down. Go back to college to get your degree even though you feel you are too old or not smart enough. Get out of that abusive relationship even though you are scared of being alone.

Remember someone out there is waiting on you to be obedient to Gods call on your life, to be inspired by your story.
I’ll leave you with this quote by Shareinspire: “Sometimes what you’re most afraid of doing is the very thing that will set you free.

What would you attempt, if you knew you wouldn’t fail?

Omilola Oshikoya is a UK certified life coach, personal finance/business coach, public speaker, columnist, entrepreneur and media & publications specialist. After over 11 years in finance/investment banking, Omilola left a very successful career in pursuit of fulfillment. Follow her on Twitter @omilola & @pocketfinance | Instagram @omiosh20. For more info on “Doing it Afraid” visit her YouTube channel | Facebook. You can also visit: | |

Mrs. Omilola Oshikoya is a UK certified life coach, personal finance/business coach, talk show host, author, public speaker, columnist, blogger, entrepreneur and media & publications specialist. After over 11 years in finance/investment banking, Omilola left a very successful career in pursuit of fulfillment. Twitter @omilola & @pocketfinance Instagram @omiosh20 Facebook Youtube [email protected]


  1. Busola

    June 14, 2014 at 9:04 am

    Hi Omilola,

    Thank you for this, your words have given me hope and courage to trust that everything really would be okay. I am about to leave a secure and very well paid job to move back to Nigeria. Am all kinds of scared and excited, you’ve just reminded me to trust God and His plans and that it’s okay to do it afraid. The essential thing is to take the first step of faith, God bless you.

  2. adetola Akitoye

    June 14, 2014 at 9:19 am

    Yayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy I am going to start today. Well done Omi. This is just the beginning

  3. Theresa Omoronyia

    June 14, 2014 at 9:52 am

    Wonderful article, I totally agree with all you have said. Fear makes us ruin ourselves, others and our relationships. As a Christian I am encouraged that God has promised to never leave us nor forsake us. In fact there 365 “Fear Nots” in the Bible, one for each day, how reassuring!

    Therefore, let’s go out there, and be everything God has called us to be, refusing to let what other think of us affect us. See yourself through God’s eyes and know that HE thinks the world of you, warts and all. Even before you were born HE loved you, even before you could love HIM, HE loved you. You cannot earn HIS love, it is HIS gift to you, will you receive it?
    Thank you Omilola for a wonderful article!

  4. Blossom

    June 14, 2014 at 10:01 am

    Thank you very much Omilola….I have had a dream to start my business (some things are all sorted, some aint)…and waiting for it all to be perfect!I will do it by his grace amen….


    June 14, 2014 at 10:05 am

    Thank you so very much Mrs Omilola Oshikoya, I needed this badly.. almost gave up but God has used you to put me back on track…. Gracias…

  6. anonymous

    June 14, 2014 at 10:07 am

    Wow…..very inspiring!!

  7. Sharon

    June 14, 2014 at 10:12 am

    Thanks for this piece babe am so inspired right now.

  8. Gistyinka Blog

    June 14, 2014 at 10:16 am

    I which Nigeria politicians can read this — to think about life after public offices.

  9. ucylo

    June 14, 2014 at 10:21 am

    Thanks dear for this piece. Will send my manuscript

  10. Dr. N

    June 14, 2014 at 10:39 am

    I’m doing it, thanks.

  11. Miss sc

    June 14, 2014 at 10:47 am

    This is a blessing to me. Please can I send you a personal email? Thank you.

  12. Radiant

    June 14, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Thank you! That is all I can say.

  13. anee

    June 14, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    Thanks for this article. Finishing MSc in few months and am so afraid of many things after it like my grades and job hunting even the type of business to go into. i don’t know where to start from which has been giving me sleepless nights. With this you have given me reasons to take chill pills.

  14. Truesophie

    June 14, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Talking to my situation .tanks for dis article.

  15. Osasodia1

    June 14, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    Oh this is “Doing It Courageous”……no more fear. Very inspiring n motivating lesson. I am going to write u( Omilola) soon. Till then lets keep believing in ourselves n building our dreams to higher heights.

  16. Ada

    June 14, 2014 at 1:02 pm

    Thank you so much! You just inspired me

  17. Hilary

    June 14, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    This came at the perfect time……God bless you

  18. Lady Mo!

    June 14, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Wow! I’m so inspired by this. I took a huge risk of quitting a job sometime ago but a year after I got another job that pays double the salary with added benefits. I’ll admit it wasn’t easy, the waiting period was crazy, I spent almost all my savings and the biz i was running wasn’t pulling through as expected but with God and the verse “He has not given me the spirit of Fear but of Power, Love and a Sound Mind” I made it through!

  19. @edDREAMZ

    June 14, 2014 at 1:55 pm

    Clap for urself, u try….

  20. Ray

    June 14, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    Thank you! X

  21. Zee

    June 14, 2014 at 2:21 pm

    Thank you. This is really inspiring

  22. AK

    June 14, 2014 at 2:24 pm

    Thank you so much for this. This came at the right time. Thank you!

  23. mimi

    June 14, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    i don’t know who you are but i just want to say thank you. you have no idea how much you have impacted on me with this article. thank you, thank you…..

  24. beevee

    June 14, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    I love this piece. I turned 30 this year and about 2yrs ago I realized I have to live my own life. Not follow what people say, especially my friends that were never honest with me and I always took their advice. Now I just don’t tell friends my business. I pray and I make decisions.
    I’m excited about my 30’s because I always say to myself, my 30’s will never be like my 20’s. I am letting go of fear daily!!! It hasn’t been easy through months of tears, for the first time in my life i’m thinking on my own, listening to my inner voice and growing and most of all letting go of fear. I’m looking forward to God’s blessings!!!

    • Mz Socially Awkward....

      June 14, 2014 at 11:06 pm

      You should be excited; if you play your approach to your 30s right, it’s a decade of boldly owning your own person, with a decrease in your fear for calling BS what it truly is and a growing desire to mold a better you everyday you wake up. Oh, and in addition? You’ll also come to appreciate yourself for the slaying hot chica you’ve turned into. So you’ll be just fine, hon. 🙂

      To the writer – I went on a evangelism street walk today, my first one ever. Talk about getting past the mammoth fear of public rejection. I “did it afraid” and then came here and saw this article… and, just as you’ve also described, it was actually very liberating.

  25. kumasiba

    June 14, 2014 at 10:36 pm

    I ‘did it afraid’ when I ended a 6 year relationship and switched majors. As I read somewher: ”You can’t go around being what everyone wants you to be, living your life through other people’s rules, and expect to be happy and have inner peace”. My intuition never failed me.

  26. kumasiba

    June 14, 2014 at 10:37 pm

    *somewhere Ignore the misplaced quotation marks, 🙂

  27. wole Adesanya

    June 15, 2014 at 10:49 pm

    Woow, i’m soo blessed by this article, everything you shared is so true, more power to your elbow sis omilola

  28. sum1special

    June 16, 2014 at 11:16 am

    Fear of the unknown is our worst nightmare.

  29. Mayode Aboderin

    June 16, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    This is my sister *screams* LOL! On the real though you make me so proud. Wise words from a wise woman after God’s heart. I pray the Lord will take you to places even your mind never imagined. You will dine with Kings and you will eventually become KING(Queen in this case). Love you so much.

  30. Omilola Oshikoya

    June 17, 2014 at 12:50 pm

    Thank you all so much for your kind words. I’m so thankful to God for the opportunity to be used as His vessel to pass on His words of encouragement. Makesure you DO IT AFRAI:D.

    To my brother Mayode, I love you so much. Thank you for all your support and encouragement

  31. kunle

    July 25, 2014 at 4:25 am

    Love it, great motivating words. I will bookmark this page to be reading and reflecting every day break.

  32. olamide

    December 5, 2015 at 12:01 am

    Really inspiring article from a wealth of knowledge and experience, thank you Omilola Oshikoya.

  33. Foluke

    March 10, 2016 at 12:58 am

    @Mz socially awkward, nice one! I wish to meet you one day, your comments on BN though, rotfl!
    @Omilola, on point. You hit the nail on the head. Not taking a risk is a risk in itself.

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