I know I am.
How can that be?
It has taken me some time to figure that out! For the longest time I believed myself to be paralyzed by the potential of being a failure. Maybe not. Isn’t it time we challenge that belief? After all many who are holding back somehow are actually pretty good at failure, addicted even to what’s been dubbed the “Doom Loop”. Like it or not it is the worn out ugly pair of shoes that seems to fit the best. Often our belief systems are no different. Sure, you covet the gorgeous pair of Prada’s, but then if you were to own them you’d be afraid something could happen to them. People might think you’re a snob, that you have money like hay, that you are some kind of diva – pretty on the out side, hollow on the inside.
So let me ask you again: Are you afraid of success? The answer might just be YES.
Let me delve a little further into my thought process here. Through the years I have started several little ventures not unlike some other businesses that would up being quite successful. Mine always faltered somehow. Everything generally got off to a good start and when it came time to make the next move to shift into a higher gear and turn a hobby into a lucrative business I inevitably turned into a “runaway
bride business achiever”. And that feeling is creeping up on me again. But this time I am prepared to meet this fear of mine eye to eye. This time I have come to far and have invested too much time (and money) to just strap on my parachute and bail. I have been at this crossing before and this time I am determined to forge ahead! I began by doing a little more research into the topic here.
In jewelry I have found the medium to express myself, that suits me best. It encompasses all of the craft skills I have acquired up until now. When my husband was diagnosed with cancer nearly two years ago the realization that I may not have as much time to live my dreams as I might have previously thought hit home. Hard. I don’t want to have any more regrets. I want to be a success. And to me it is not as much about money as it is about being happy and satisfied with my accomplishments. I am not looking to run a multi million empire, but I want to be “comfortable”.
The most important step for me is always to sit down and collect my thoughts in order to get to the bottom of it.
Here are some of the issues that came up for me:
- success bring with it a slew of new responsibilities, raised expectations, deadlines, creative pressures and even recognition that I am not accustomed to and don’t feel comfortable about.
- added attention makes me uncomfortable; I come from the generation that was raised to be seen, not heard
- I have to employ skills, like accounting, marketing, business stuff in general that aren’t my strong suit.
- if I really succeed, something bad is bound to happen
- somebody will find out how stupid I am
- I don’t deserve success
- somebody is always better at whatever I do
Just reading this short list, and believe me I didn’t even get into the real ugly thoughts here, shows me a couple of ways that may lead to overcoming my “success phobia”. And I may have uncovered some keys to manage my fears and trepidation.
The first is to concentrate on educating myself on all the subjects that I find so intimidating. Hey, a year ago I didn’t have the first clue about writing a blog and I was terrified I would mess up every shipment from my Etsy shop. Turns out Etsy shipping couldn’t be any easier. And blogging, while challenging, is also something that can be learned.
The second issue is also quite clear. A definite lack of self esteem. And that is where I just have to establish clear ground rules for myself.
They go something like this: Yes, there will always be someone who does it better, but that is kind of a universal truth, not an excuse to stick your head in the sand. I will care less about how I perceive the way others look at me. Nobody has the right to judge anyone. Period.
I will strive for success. I will set reasonable and achievable goals for myself. I will not take it personal if someone doesn’t like my jewelry. I will be my own best supporter. I will surround myself with people who appreciate, support and accept me the way I am. I will stay true to my values. I will try to support others in their creative endeavors.
I know wherever my journey takes me I will wind up in a good place.
I would love to hear your perspective. Have you tried and failed before finally becoming successful? What was is that changed for you that put you on the better path? Am I the only one struggling with this? I’ll keep you posted…