Everyone has heard of the dreaded “fear of failure” and how it is usually described as one of the main reasons why people will not after go after their dreams. But I believe an equally terrifying culprit that causes dream deterrence is “fear of success”. While much has been written on the topic of overcoming the fear of failing, discovering how to conquer this irrational fear of success has not been an easy journey. I have come up with three steps that serve as my personal testimony for creating a life worth living.
Three steps to getting over your fear of success…
1. Decide you Deserve It:
One of the most difficult things to do when it comes to success is to decide that you deserve it. Deeming ourselves worthy is a very difficult task for most women especially when we rely on most of our validation from outside sources. These sources usually dictate how we should feel about our weight, our hair, our style of dress, and what we feel we deserve in life. The truth is only you can decide that you are worthy of all of your desires and understand that life will only give you what you feel you deserve. So go ahead and DECIDE RIGHT NOW to be successful in all of your endeavors!
2. Lead by Example:
My mother has an intense fear of dogs and because of this we were never allowed to have pets. I never understood how people could become so attached to animals until I became the co-parent of a beautiful puppy named Hali. A few months ago I had to break the bad news to my mother that while she was deathly afraid of dogs, this little one was coming home with me for Thanksgiving, because I did not want to leave her in a kennel. No way! No How! My mother agreed since she was a “little” dog. However, when I walked into the house with the puppy in tow, my mother jumped onto the couch screaming and was almost in tears. My two year old niece and nephew quickly followed suit. In that moment she realized that she had just imparted her own fears onto two very innocent souls. She quickly got down off of the couch and as hard as it was for her, she reached down to greet Hali by rubbing her little head and just as expected, the two year olds repeated her actions. “I did not want them to grow up being afraid of dogs”, my mother said. I was so proud of her in that moment for putting her own fears aside to demonstrate to her grandchildren that there was no need for them to be afraid either.
This is how I try to live my life as well. I know that there are other women who look to me for courage and encouragement. Since completing my book, I have had several women to start writing or complete an unfinished book project because they said “if she can do it, then so can I”. When you know that others are watching you, it makes it a little easier to set the stage. So, don’t be afraid to lead the way!
3. Know that Success begins with Failure
I know this one might sound a little absurd, but I have found it to be quite true. While writing The Grown Woman’s Guide to Greatness, I was forced to reevaluate my entire life. I looked at both my successes and “failures” and was shocked to discover that right before any great accomplishment happened in my life there was always a series of detours, delays, and major distractions. I realize now that the things I had deemed “failures” were actually the very things that were setting me up for success. In fact, the day after I wrote the very first chapter I was informed that I would be laid off within the next few weeks. Instead of feeling like I had somehow failed, I embraced the idea of having time off to complete the book and to begin the new journey of becoming an author and spiritual development coach. Being laid off taught me how to budget my money, time, and resources better and pushed me right into full time entrepreneurship where I had always longed to be. I have made more time to exercise which has led to me losing 25 pounds and looking and feeling better than I have in years. Oftentimes when we lose jobs, we feel as if we have failed. I honestly felt like losing my job enabled me to find myself.
While these steps are definitely easier said than done, I challenge you to try each and see how overcoming your fear of success will open doors you never imagined and lead you to a life of ultimate fulfillment and joy.
On your journey toward greatness and success, be bold…be blessed!