Glad you didn’t make an “almost” comeback.
So last week I started the conversation about how we can sometimes be the reason we don’t succeed. I shared that sometimes we buy into mediocrity because it doesn’t make us an ultimate loser. Remember, we “settle for the silver “cause it’s “better than the bronze”.
I also shared that there are several reasons I believe people stand in their own way, including, but not limited to past mistakes and unrealistic expectations. And, I also promised if you came back, that I’d share a few more ways people stifle and stumble to second rate success. So here we go. Reason number three people stand in their own way…..
Fear- Pursuing a dream takes courage, and it takes it for the long haul. However, if you are like people (I won’t say most because you’re ego may lead you think you’re not, but you are more than you probably want to admit) amidst courage, every now and again there is some fear. Fear is normal. It’s what you do with fear that distinguishes the champion, best, and number one from “What’s that guy’s name. Uh, you know the one.”
So what are you afraid of?
The Unknown- Sounds kinda crazy, I know. But it’s actually a pretty common fear. Fear of the unknown is the new fear of the monster under the bed. Pursuing dreams as I said takes courage which means taking risks. The unknown is inherent to risks. Sure we can run numbers and look at “market research”. But nothing in life is certain, including how our dreams unfold. Often times I encourage people to think of the worse that could happen. Then I encourage them to think of the best possible outcome. That often works. The envisioned joy, triumph, and satisfaction of the best gives gumption. But then there are some who are still skeptics. So, I encourage them to go back to the unknown and ask themselves if the decision will lead to death or the loss of basic needs (i.e. housing, a job that could lead to lost housing, etc.). If there are no consequences that would incur death or loss of basic needs then by all means, do it. Besides, when you finally do do it, it’s not unknown anymore now is it?
Failure- Similar to mistakes, failures happen. Don’t think because you graduated with the 3.89 you’re excluded. You’re not. Failures can be pretty hard to overcome. They can definitely make you wonder “What’s the point?” No one likes not making the mark. However, you won’t know if you make the mark, or supersede the target if you don’t try.
I remember a friend who is a fellow entrepreneur asking me “How many shirts do you want to sell each month?” And I remember thinking “A million.” However, what I said was, “I’m not sure.” A million may or may not have been realistic, but what made me verbalize the “I’m not sure” was I was afraid that I could set a number too high and fail to reach the number.
Well I eventually settled on a “realistic” number. And some months I hit that number, twice I sold double, and several months I sold considerably under. Phreedum hasn’t closed shop.
Success- That’s the goal, yes? However, there are some who worry about their ability to succeed and how it may change them or change their relationships. You know the song “Mo’ Money Mo’ Problems.” Yeah, the more successful Biggie and Diddy (formerly known as Puff Daddy) got the more they incurred problems. And I’m sure their problems were like many people who have accumulated financial wealth as a part of their success, including but not limited to a more challenging time trusting people, defining and maintaining their identity apart from their status and success, etc. Success also brings with it expectation. There is an inherent expectation to continue to succeed and to actually supersede your initial or former success. It’s great the first time you hit a goal. It’s greater not when you hit it again, but when you go above. For some that can be anxiety producing and the familiarity of mediocrity can become quite appealing. Don’t be fooled however. Just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so is success. You define success. Not the number of sales, amount of money amassed, cars or properties purchased, degrees received, children had or not had, or number of years in a marriage or whether it’s the first or third union. Success is based upon ideals, and you decide which ideals you adhere to.
Fear is real. But so is achieving your dreams. They are two realities that often vie for much of our time and energy. The more we give the possibility of achieving our dreams a chance, the less fear has of impeding the process of possibility becoming reality.
I’m not sure where you’ve been but I’ve got a hunch you are headed to greatness. Not almost greatness either. So, take a few moments to think about your journey to greatness. Check and make sure you aren’t carry a three piece luggage set marked fear of unknown, fear of failure, or fear of success. And, if you are put the bags down, and go pack again. And if you can only take one bag on this trip, let it be faith.
Alright, well you already know, check back next week. I actually have one more reason why people slide into second place so easily. You know you’re curious, so just give in. Curiosity killed the cat, not people. Live a little, and check back. Until then, go be phearless.