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Do It Scared: Finding the Courage to Face Your Fears, Overcome Adversity, and Create a Life You Love is Ruth Soukup’s sixth book. Ruth is the founder of Elite Blog Academy, Living Well Spending Less, and the Living Well Planner. Do It Scared is a book about fear—how fear affects different people in different ways, how to reframe and manage the different fear archetypes, and how to embrace the principles of courage to stop living a life you hate.
The book is split into three sections:
- The Fear Archetypes
- The Principles of Courage
- Courage in Action
Each section is full of relatable stories, explanations, encouragement, and tips for the topic at hand. If you’re a regular listener of Ruth Soukup’s podcast, Do It Scared, you will recognize a lot of the stories and content in this book. And I love that! It reinforces the message Ruth is trying to convey:
“Courage doesn’t mean we are never afraid, courage is simply daring to take action, despite our fear.“
The Fear Archetypes
The most interesting and intriguing section is the first: the Fear Archetypes.
Ruth and her team invested in an actual scientific study to suss out the role that fear plays in peoples’ lives. They found that fear distills into seven buckets.
- Rule Follower
- People Pleaser
- Excuse Maker
At first glance, it might be easy to figure out where you fall, but I do recommend taking the Fear Assessment to discover your top three. The premium report lets you see how the rest of the archetypes line up, and how they all interact with each other.
I took the fear assessment before reading the book and discovered that my top three fear archetypes are 1) people pleaser, 2) procrastinator, and 3) rule follower. Those sections resonated with me the most because I recognize myself in those stories—and the tips to reframe and handle those fears are really helpful for me.
The Principles of Courage
I also absolutely love the deep dive into the Principles of Courage. My favorite of those is “Always Own It” because it’s directly related to the idea of Extreme Ownership, which I try to practice every day.
Ruth talks about these principles of courage on the podcast, too.
- Dare to Think Big
- Rules are for Suckers
- Always Own It
- Embrace Honest Feedback
- There Are No Mistakes, Only Lessons
- Balance is Overrated
- Just Keep Going
Individually, each one is powerful to hold tightly and live by. But embracing them all together can make for an amazing transformation in your life.
Maybe you already observe one or more of these principles of courage.
I’d challenge you to embrace all of them—and see what happens.
Courage in Action
This section of the book is all about the things you can do—and should do—to take concrete steps toward doing it scared.
Out of all of Ruth’s suggestions, the one that resonates with me the most is to “find your why”. This is a popular concept all over the internet, and Simon Sinek even wrote a book about it.
Knowing why we do things is the key to clarity about our goals and dreams.
The other steps to practicing active courage are not more or less important than “finding your why”, but that’s the one I clung to the most.
A close second was “stop comparing.” Comparison is the thief of joy, and it’s never a good idea to compare your beginning to someone else’s middle. It doesn’t do you good to compare yourself to anyone else’s journey—because they’re not you!
What’s the Verdict?
I liked that the content was familiar to me because of the podcast. It helped cement and reinforce the importance of understanding how fear works in my life, and also to really get the principles of courage. I’ve even adopted most of them into my personal “Principles to Live By” list that I look at every morning.
However, that level of familiarity might put some people off—if they can get the same information in the podcast, which is free, why buy the book?
Well, it’s easier to reference the book rather than the podcast episodes or transcripts. Like anything, how content is packaged makes a big difference.
I may be biased because I love books, but I definitely think this one is 100% worth buying.
Do It Scared is packed full of truth bombs that people need to hear if they want to take control of their lives. Ruth is all about the baby steps—putting one foot in front of the other, even if you don’t know where that path will lead.
Her own powerful story paved the path for her to become who she is today—because she did do it scared. She put one foot in front of the other and ended up in an amazing place. But just like us, her journey isn’t over yet.
We all have a long way to go.
So let’s all do it scared.