February 22

Since yesterday’s entry was about confronting your fears in order to dismantle them, I thought it might be helpful today to discuss the two kinds of fear. The first is fairly familiar and probably obvious: fear of failure. It’s what prevents you from taking risks, testing your boundaries, or speaking up in a meeting. It takes root in the unknown and thrives on uncertainty.

But there is a second kind of fear that can also paralyze you: fear of success.

Why would you fear success? Because with success come increased expectations. With success come more attention and a higher bar to leap over. With success comes the burden of delivering the same results next time, even if you have less time or fewer resources. As the saying goes, “The tallest blade of grass gets cut.” Calling attention to your capabilities only means more responsibility is coming your way, right?

When you fall prey to fear of success, you might purposefully (or subconsciously) underdeliver, because you don’t want or need the added pressure. However, allowing fear to control you in any form means you are forfeiting your potential.

Don’t allow fear—in any form—to paralyze you.

Is there any place where you might be experiencing a fear of success?

Related Articles