I really, really like The Launch Coach – Dave Navarro – blog and I recommend you subscribe immediately. Thanks to @SarahCairncross for putting me onto that one.
For my ezine this week, I went hunting for a brilliant article he wrote about “Your Own Standards & How They Cripple You” or some similar title but I think it might be on his excellent, straight talking, personal development RockYourDay.com blog.
I found this instead – it’s great! I’m still looking for the other one….
Dave says: “When I wrote about how insecurity doesn’t pay the bills I knew it was an important topic, but I didn’t realize how many people would be brave enough to come out of the woodwork and get honest about the fear they’re feeling. Kudos to everyone who had the stones to get real in a public forum.
I’ve been asked to follow-up on that post with my reaction to the variety of insecurities and fears that people expressed, and I’ve spent the last two weeks simmering on the subject. There were over 100 comments on that post, and almost as many different kinds of “baggage” being unpacked. But after thinking about it, I’m convinced that the majority of our shared hangups don’t truly stem from a low self image.
I think what it really comes down to is worry – that stupid game we play in our head where we freak out about what might happen if we take action. We think about all the things that might possibly go wrong (or the new pressures that might come with the territory if they actually go right), and we vapor lock. This is different from just being afraid that we might fail. This is convincing ourselves that we probably will.
Seth Godin defines anxiety and worry as “Practicing failure in advance.” And that’s the most perfect description I’ve ever heard.
I’m no psychiatrist, but I know a fair bit about how humans are wired up. And I can tell you with absolute certainty that what we focus on, we support with our behavior. Sometimes this sucks, like when we tolerate staying socially awkward, undercharging for our services or a creating a blog that no one wants to come to visit. We focus on everything that’s “wrong” with us, and we lock ourselves into weak action (or in many cases, inaction).
Other times, it’s fantastic, like when we decide we’re going to play a much bigger game and we focus our thoughts on things that give us the courage to take actions that generate incredible improvements in our circumstances.
But for many of us, the worry is bigger. We get caught up in rehearsing all the things that can go wrong, all the ways that we can fail and all those “worst case scenarios” and we freak out so hard we just can’t bring ourselves to take action. Our focus is so strong that the “we’re doomed!” reflex is stronger than the “Just do it” reflex in our brains.
Great job, brain. Way to screw the pooch……
How Successful People Overcome Worry & Consistently Get Themselves To Take Action
Last week I said what most “successful” people are afraid to say: All your mentors are really, really screwed up. And they are, just like we are. They have baggage just like we do. Naomi Dunford of Ittybiz admitted it perfectly in What To Do When You’re Scared Sh*tless. She freaks out, just like I do, just like you do, just like every single one of your heroes and mentors do.
Successful people (who I define as action takers, not rich people) experience worry, terror, and what I often refer to as “pants-wetting fear.” Sometimes we are absolutely, positively sick to our stomachs with stress before we click “Send” on that email or “Publish” on that blog post.
But the thing is, we actually follow through and click “Send.” We click “Publish.” And that’s what puts food on the table.
Sometimes, the results are amazing. Other times, (and to be honest, often times) the results are disappointing or even embarrassing.
But we do it anyway. And that’s why we (I’m including you in this “we”, by the way) – that’s why we have what we have. Not because we haven’t failed, but because we took action.
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