“Procrastination is the fear of success. People procrastinate because they are afraid of the success that they know will result if they move ahead now. Because success is heavy, carries a responsibility with it, it is much easier to procrastinate and live on the ‘someday I’ll’ philosophy.”
As old as I am this success thing still confounds me. As hard and as long as I work toward my goals it often feels like I”m using large amounts of my time fighting with myself. There’s just no way to win. Now this is not going to be a scholarly discussion of fear of success. I’m no psychologist I can’t diagnose a phobia and I’m definitely not a wiki.
All I want to do today is discuss what I know, the frustration caused by the symptoms of fear of success and how to combat it before failure moves into your spare room and starts bonding with your kids. The definition and psychology of the fear of success is pretty simple its fear of change dressed up like an elephant and standing in your living room. No one mentions it but we all know it’s there as we choose over and over to be mediocre.
Supping on the Bananas of disappointment
When we talk about fear of success, the change we fear just happens to be positive. We hairless apes are very clever but we long for routine. Change in any shape size or flavor scares the crap out of us. Until we find the motivation to change, the motivation to succeed we will continue on our negative path supping on bananas of disappointment feasting on meal worms of failure until we finally hit rock bottom or worse still, never hit rock bottom and live our neat lives of quiet desperation living in constant fear of success.
So how do we escape the clutches of this self inflicted mediocrity? Let’s not try let’s do!
Feel the Fear of success, and connect with your Passion
- Start right now and admit your fear of success and the changes it will bring
- You’re afraid of that promotion, afraid of losing that extra weight just plain afraid
- Take a bit of time to understand why you’re afraid of success. The most common fear is that after you solve your biggest problems you cease to have excuses without excuses what ever would you complain about.
- Connect with your passion when mediocrity comes calling in your life never focus on what you don’t want focus on what you do want let that connection with your passion become the rope that binds you to it and keeps the fear at bay
- Visualize success and all the benefits that come with it often
- There is abundance in life open your eyes, focus on your goals and on all the success you see in the world, look at all the ways you are already successful. No one needs to lose for you to win there are infinite opportunities for everyone.
- Failure isn’t the worst thing on earth
Forget thinking, do!
- Stop over-thinking, success is good, they say that our ability to reason sets us apart from animals well sometimes we just need to put our brains in neutral and focus on doing.
- Once you start doing you start learning and that learning is invaluable it also takes your mind off of all those imagined problems success will apparently bring.
- Success is good go read the definition in the dictionary you fool
- When you start doing you start learning to flow, to tune out the world stop thinking and take pleasure in the doing. Allowing you to auto-pilot your way to success. Remember what it feels like when you are in flow and are able to produce at a high level for long periods. being able to call on this flow state is the key to lasting change.
Talk your way to success
- When you’re not doing talk. Talk about what you’ve done talk about what you are still going to do keep the dialog going. Everything is created twice. Talking about what is going on in your head breathes life into your dreams and makes them real to you and your network. Talking makes you accountable for your actions to others and yourself
- Plan big go ahead and plan every part of your success, every step you plan to take, every meeting every document, hell plan your outfit when you make it. The best way to combat change is to anticipate it. Plan for success and you’ll find your fear will become trivial.
Start Small but start!
- Start small see this guest post based on Leo Babauta’s excellent The power of less for tips on how to approach your goals effectively
- The only failure is failing to try start as small as you feel comfortable with but start now.
As the world barrels along the enemy of great truly is good. We are all of us settling for good when great is within our reach. We need to remember that success lies on the other side of failure if we turn tail and run whenever we fail we’ll never make it. Fear can be the fuel for your success or for the flames of your failure. Only you can decide if good is good enough though.
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