I wanted to do a series on warband strategy, but I felt this would be more useful overall. I started having a lot more fun in WAR when I quit running from challenge and started embracing it. Instead of fearing the zerg, I learned to use it's disorganization against it. I went from fearing seeing the Destro elite premades to welcoming them. Instead of being fearful, I became feared (mostly because of my guild tag).
I consider myself to be an elite player that a lot of more "causal" players seem to rail about on the forums. I'm certainly in an elite guild. I don't play a whole lot, and I don't have the best gear, but playing a lot and having the best gear doesn't make one elite. I've managed to earn the title Master Tactician from my guildmates. I wasn't always like this though.
Don't believe me? Here. Watch for yourself. 10 minutes of footage of probably one of the most embarrassing scenarios I've ever been in. (I've muted the sound to prevent the video from being used for other purposes.)
This was shot about a year ago. You've got everything there from lack of fortitude to keyboard turning to not using challenge to not using Guard properly to a crappy, cluttered UI. It's truly pathetic how the heck I got to tier 4 playing that badly.
But I didn't beat myself up over it. I manned up, admitted I sucked and got help.
The first thing required to make the transition from "normal" player to "elite" player is to realize that you don't know everything and that it's quite possible you aren't the greatest thing since sliced bread. The "elite" may seem cocky, but the first true lesson is being elite is humility. A player who thinks he's perfect cannot accept feedback from others and therefore cannot improve.
Truly, the first fear to go has to be the fear of failure.