I would say my biggest struggle throughout my life has been not feeling like I was good enough. I plugged along anyway and got things done, but I always wondered what it would feel like to accomplish those things without that crippling handicap. There is some part of me that still is not sure if I’m worth the trust I place in myself. I’ve been knocked around a lot and it gets harder to get up each time. I always do, but I never quite heal fully.
There are times when I’ve held on to relationships longer than I should have just because I felt safer having a second person as a back up plan to myself.
I’ve pretended not to feel bad to my “support network” because I learned that I couldn’t count on people to stick around when the going got tough.
I believed that there was something so flawed about me that I couldn’t even correct it. I imagined that others found it so repulsive that eventually, they’d stop liking me (if they ever really did), stop wanting to be around me, and finally leave me.
I realize now that I had learned not to trust myself or others. Instead, I taught myself to be self-sufficient to a fault. I taught myself to rely on no one. To hide myself and quietly toll along.
A part of me hoped I would arrive at some destination where everything would fall into place – I’d be successful and people would really like me, hear me, and stay for a change.
I realize now that I had taught myself to believe that no matter what I accomplished in life, it was because of a force outside of myself and it had nothing to do with me. Yet I was always responsible for the failures. Interesting how that works!
When you don’t know how it works, it all seems like magic!
You hope that success in one area equals success in all areas by proxy. Sort of like believing that if you get that promotion you’ve been working for, you’ll also magically lose weight, get in shape, get great friends, and find the someone of your dreams. When only one of those things happen because it was the only one you were putting effort into, it can feel disappointing if you believe that mainly outside forces control the outcomes in your life. It can seem like with all the good energy being put into the universe, all your wishes should come true even if you didn’t do anything more than wish.
I think one of the hardest things to give up is a fear of your own success.
Yes! You heard me right. Fear of Success. We can actually become comfortable with our lives and our ingrained thought processes even when they do us no good. If you’re afraid of succeeding you can often sabotage your efforts to keep yourself stuck in place. It’s a bit like an addiction. You do it compulsively even though you know better. Giving it up is a major stressor. It forces you to rethink everything in your life.
That’s just hard because the brain likes predictable things to work with. It likes to think as little as possible. So, you’re literally messing with your own head when you force it to change the message based on how you look at your accomplishments.
You can’t keep reasonably telling yourself you’re a worthless, no good, failure when you keep succeeding. And especially because despite that awful voice in your head, you’ve succeeded! That’s really a feat to be proud of!
Letting yourself be proud means letting go of the tapes in your head that trained you to believe otherwise about yourself.
When it all boils down it sometimes helps me to remember that failure is guaranteed. Success is optional.
I’ll write more in future blogs about the fear of failure vs. the fear of success so it can be a more expanded discussion. I just wanted to get this out.
with love from aneternaltraveler 😉