My friend Kivi Leroux Miller is doing her annual survey on nonprofit communications – please consider taking a minute to fill it out here – and so far, the results are quite interesting.Here’s what your peers are saying is terrifying:1. Vying for supporters’ attention2. Trying new things (especially social media outreach)3. The slow economy4. Overwork and burnoutHere’s what is exciting:1. Upgrading websites to be more interactive2. Actually doing communication planning for 2012 to hit the ground running3. Integrating communication channels4. Trying out social mediaIt’s interesting but not surprising to see social media in both categories. New and exciting things are often scary, so social media makes both lists. Here’s what I worry about for 2012: That our fear of new things, the poor economy and our sheer volume of work will cause us to do what’s safe rather than what’s needed. It’s tempting to run away from risk and do the same things that we’ve always done. It feels easier to stick to the usual scripts.But this is the time when we can least afford that. I suggest we all take our lists of what’s scary and make them our to-do lists. Anything that instills fear is probably exactly what is needed.