Are you one of those people who is afraid of failure or are you afraid of success?
If you’re neither—well good for you. I’m not bitter. Truly. 😛
Fear of failure is a standard fear. We don’t want to fail. We don’t want to deal with those feelings.
But fear of success? You might be thinking that’s irrational. No one is scared of success.
You’d be wrong.
Let’s unpack this fear of failure first. I saw Rachel Hollis, a motivational speaker, at an event and she said something that stuck with me. “You aren’t afraid of failing. You’re afraid of them watching you fail.”
How true is that statement for you? Because honestly, in my own writing, I’m not afraid of how much I fail over and over until I nail it. But I am afraid of sharing my work in its “failed” stages because I don’t want anyone to see that version of me/my work. Do you relate to this?
What is the solution?
Realizing the fear is less about the failure about more about the witnessing of your failure doesn’t suddenly make it easy to go on and fail now. But recognizing that I’m not afraid of sucking a whole bunch has been enlightening for me. I know I’ll fail several times at the things that I don’t know super well. But eventually, I won’t fail, and eventually, I’ll know those things super well, and eventually, you’ll be seeing me kick butt at those things instead of failing. If you are privy to seeing me fail again and again, well then I sure as heck hope you’ll rejoice with me when I do succeed.
Which is what I will do for you. I’m not judging you during your “failures.” Your work in progress manuscript is going to enter the editing and revision stage for a reason. First drafts do not begin as magic. But they turn into it! And each draft you write is going to help you move forward.
But what if you are afraid of succeeding? You want to succeed, you want to grow and do more and share your work and self with the world and kick some major butt and write some killer books. Except, being successful can mean several things.
It can mean leaving others behind, taking risks that many people won’t understand, putting yourself out there, being judged harder, becoming a voice for others. There are several elements of success that I’m afraid of, personally. But the one that gets me, and maybe as writers you’ll understand this, is that idea of becoming a voice for others. What if you suddenly become “the” expert on a specific thing, or “the” voice of a group of people or subject. Once people look to you, doubt can kick in.
So what can you do about it?
I say do it anyway. That sounds simple, but in action is hella difficult. But try it: do it anyway. If you DO become that voice of others, then appreciate the platform you are given, listen to others, and use that chance to give back to others. If you are a voice for many who need a voice, well then be that! They want your voice out there, just as you want their voices out there.
Remember you look to others as a voice for certain things, so why wouldn’t others look to you? It doesn’t mean you have to be perfect. Showing your imperfections is a relatable, human experience. S
So go out there let them watch you fail and let them see you succeed. You won’t regret it and you know that deep down.
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