The Signs for Fear of Failure
Nobody likes to fail but for some people the fear of failure presents such a substantial psychological threat, that their motivation to avoid failure surpasses their motivation to succeed. This fear of failure causes them to damage their chances of success.
How Can fear of failure be a Psychological Threat?
Failing provokes feelings such as disappointment, anger, frustration, sadness, regret, etc. But these emotions don’t trigger full blown fear of failure. It is not actually failure that is feared, but it is essentially a fear of shame. Failing makes some people feel deep shame.
Shame is a psychologically venomous emotion because instead of feeling guilt or regret, we feel bad about who we are as people. Shame gets to the core of our ego’s, self-esteem and emotional well-being. Shame makes it urgent for those who have a fear of failure to avoid the psychological threat with ways to alleviate the implications of a potential failure eg by buying unnecessary new clothes for a job interview instead of reading up on the company.
The 10 Signs: Fear of Failure
If these signs are characteristic of you, study this issue further:
1. Failing makes you worry about what other people think of you.
2. Failing makes you worry about your ability to pursue the future you desire.
3. Failing makes you worry that people will lose interest in you.
4. Failing makes you worry about how smart or skillful you are.
5. Failing makes you worry about disappointing people.
6. You tend to express that you don’t expect to succeed, to lower their expectations.
7. Once you fail, you can’t imagine what you could have done differently to succeed.
8. You often get last minute aches and pains that prevent you from completing the task.
9. You often get distracted by other tasks that are not urgent.
10. You tend to procrastinate and ‘run out of time’ to complete your task.
What to do about a Fear of Failure
The primary problem is that a fear of failure operates on an unconscious level. There are two ways to conquer the means by which fear of failure can influence your behavior:
1. Own the fear. Accept that failure makes you feel fear and shame. It can help prevent unconscious efforts to sabotage yourself.
2. Focus on aspects of the task that are in your control. Brainstorm ways to reframe aspects of the task that seem out of your control, to regain control of them.
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This article originally posted on: www.first-for-women.co.za and reposted with permission.