fear of success?
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mosaic Offline
just another one of us

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fear of success?
here i am in graduate school, and i'm so full of self-doubt. i never thought i would even be accepted into school.

i am struggling to acknowledge my accomplishments. it feels so threatening to say i'm doing well academically - and with each new class, or each new assignment i am filled with dread and uncertainty that i can do it.

do you deal with these kinds of feelings? how do you manage that voice inside that says "you're just a fraud and some day everyone will know"?
10-04-2015, 02:30 PM
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nats Offline
here and there..

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RE: fear of success?
this fear of being caught out as a fraud is a thing in business psych and gender studies known as 'imposter syndrome' and features in Sandberg's popular 'Lean In.' successful women are particularly prone to it, so you're in illustrious company Wink

seriously, i think as multiples we might be particularly affected by these feelings because most of us spend so much effort putting on a front for outsiders. interesting question.
Blush Learn how to manage conflict, because the greater the level you can tolerate, the more freedom you will retain - E. Walsh Smile
10-05-2015, 04:20 AM
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Tangled Web Offline
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RE: fear of success?
We struggle with these things also. The way we manage these things is that we turned into somewhat of a perfectionist. It puts a lot more pressure on us but it also drives us to keep up this image we want we people to have of us so they don't see us a fraud.

Over time we have been able to see flickers of our accomplishments and hold onto them for longer periods of time. I guess it is just trying to make that voice inside saying you can do it stronger and louder than the voice that tells you can't and you are fraud. We do that by dealing with the facts of things. The more facts you have ex. good grades, above average work performance, more knowledge, etc. It will help drown out the negative voices, which will help change the way you feel-so I am told.
For us it doesn't change how we feel yet-but I am told it will-so I am still waiting.........

I remember the time I was in school to be a nurse and I got 100% on my final grade in a course--I still felt it wasn't good enough even though I knew you can't do any better than that. The feeling of being proud of ourselves or saying we did well in something has always felt wrong. It is a hard thing to change.
"You may not remember what someone says or does, but you will never forget how they made you feel" Mac Anderson.
(This post was last modified: 10-05-2015, 12:30 PM by Tangled Web.)
10-05-2015, 12:28 PM
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The People Offline
Long Time Member Who grew Up Here

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RE: fear of success?
The same message has followed me around from job to job. Even after proving my competence (except in the area of paperwork) I was still waiting for people to figure out I was faking it. How I could fake the success of clients based on my assistance I don't know. Some were small by my standards but big by theirs. Others were huge and accomplished by instinct.

Thereis a book somewhere in my mess. Its title has been one of my genres. Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway. I say that to myself because that is what happens. So I guess it is now a mantra. Perhaps you could make up a mantra for you. One to offset that inner voice telling you that you are faking it. That they will figure you out.

We all have to prove ourselves with every change in life. Mantras help me a lot. Check out some Mary Englebritefor some ideas as she dies great stuff.
I Am My Only Chance For A Hero!
10-06-2015, 10:50 PM
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MakersDozn Offline
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Feedback  RE: fear of success?
We have struggled with fear of success throughout our life. It's not because we believed we were "faking it"; in fact, it was just the opposite. We succeeded constantly but were never recognized or praised for it.

A number of us began to wonder why we should even try. But we kept doing our best because we were also afraid of failure--not meeting the standards we perceived others as having. It was a catch-22 because nothing we could do would mitigate either fear.

We continued making the effort because we knew that if we tried, at least nobody could accuse us of not trying. It was not much consolation.

Charity, Mary, and others
10-10-2015, 05:11 PM
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Cammy Offline
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RE: fear of success?
This issue of fear of failure has been a dominant problem in my existence. Yet, like you, when I applied myself, I found that not only did I succeed, but succeeded extremely well. I don't think I ever lost the trepidation of worrying that I would fail, but what I did do was to use the fear to drive myself to do the most excellent job I could. I suspect this may also be true for you - as you approach a new assignment, you are afraid you will bomb, and this makes you put extra effort into it. That negative voice you hear was put there by someone horrible and abusive, because you are by no means a fraud. All you need to do is look at how far you've come and all the accomplishments that got you there and then you will know you are the real deal. Frauds do not make it to graduate school by any means. So tell that negative naysayer on the inside that it is full of horse poop, and keep moving ahead. You are a shining star and it would be wonderful if someday you could see yourself for what is so obvious to the rest of us.

Sending you warm thoughts, good feelings, and the sweet taste of success.
Disclaimer: Any words or phrases used in our posts are meant in a completely respectful manner. Please know that we always endeavour to be kind and supportive.
10-21-2015, 02:31 PM
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