"A man who feels no fear will never know courage."
I think a lot of people get undeservingly praised for their fearlessness. Being fearless is not the same as being courageous. For example, a person who has no fear of getting into fights, is not always courageous. In many cases, by engaging in fights, they would actually be succumbing to their true fear, and that's losing their reputation, and being accused of cowardice or weakness. Courage is about being able to control our fears, and act independently of them, rather than not feeling them.
I believe it can be a blessing that we feel fear. Not only does it protect us from recklessness, but it gives us a chance to gain a lot of knowledge from our experiences. Even in situations where self-confidence is essential, being fearful to some degree is a good thing. A reckless driver will not learn from their mistakes nearly as quickly as a careful one, for example, and a fearless public speaker will make a fool of himself.
Bottom line, instead of looking at our fears – and our flaws in general – as disadvantages, we can look at them as an opportunity for growth. With the knowledge we gain dealing with our flaws, we have an opportunity to surpass those who never had those weaknesses. There's usually a lot more to slow learners than what meets the eye. I believe this is one of the reasons autistic people often end up being geniuses, despite their slow start.