We spend most of our time living in terror of things that never come to pass.
I call these "Paper Demons" because they are shallow, flimsy evils that we make up in our heads but somehow pretend they are entirely true. It's the many awful fates we consider of our startups and our careers if things go wrong or the knockdown, drag-out arguments we're going to have with investors if we crater this thing.
Our Paper Demons come in many flavors but they all share one trait — they are imaginary outcomes that we treat as if they are absolute. The problem with this thinking is that it consumes an insane amount of real energy and focus, which, ironically, is exactly what we need to conserve in order to avoid those fates.