What you tell yourself
One of the most powerful insights I gathered only a couple of weeks ago when I asked those who follow me to tell me their thoughts: a lot of people live with huge anxiety, the fear of failing or the fear of not succeeding.
This emotion seems almost to be a viral disease. Many, too many, people live with this burden. It has different manifestations: the fear of failure, the fear of not being able to accumulate enough resources to live, the fear of disappointing, of not living up to someone else’s expectations... In a nutshell, this a constant sense of inadequacy and lack of control. These people do not feel capable or good enough.
And unfortunately, it is precisely this fear that leads them straight to the potential failure they are scared of. If it were not for the fear, that outcome would be very unlikely. It is the lack of confidence in yourself that leads you to be unproductive, inefficient, unconvincing, doubtful, incapable.
So, potential failure is something you are unconsciously choosing at an inner level and you do so by giving credibility to a vision of yourself that is fragile, incomplete and defective. This is the story you constantly tell yourself, which positively or negatively models your results.
What is the story you tell yourself every day? When you look in the mirror, do you see an image of yourself that you like, or would you like to be completely different? When you speak to others, do you feel real and honest or do you hide yourself because you are embarrassed by your own vulnerabilities? When the day ends and you look back at what you have accomplished or made, do you feel generally satisfied or just hugely tired?
What is the image of you that you would like to give energy, credit, trust? Is it that of a weak, frightened person in need of help and support, unable to choose and decide, a person that cannot lead, but only follow and act based on other peoples’ opinions and orders? Well, if this is the case then you have nailed what the problem is and it is completely within your control to solve it. This depends on you alone.
Your fears and your anxieties can completely transform and disappear if you change your view of yourself, if you change the story you tell yourself every day. You are not this story. Unconsciously you have chosen to believe this version of events, as you did when you were a child who believed the adults around you saying: "You’re good for nothing", "you're unreliable" "with that attitude you won’t go anywhere"... These judgments have weighed like stones on your heart, and you have started to believe them and to give in to these opinions, shaping a version of you that corresponds completely with these words. But you can change this and I invite you to do so; if you want to finally live a more peaceful life, you can do it. You can change the story you are telling yourself.
This begins with looking at yourself more objectively, not using someone else’s filters and opinions. Then, acknowledge your strengths and capabilities and, leveraging the positive emotion that will arise from this, start to evaluate yourself from a different perspective. You are not a child anymore. Look at all you have been able to choose and build, the challenges you've already overcome, the results and successes, but also look to the thousands of times that you fell and got back on your feet again.
You are more capable than you allow yourself to be. You just have to look at yourself with new eyes and free yourself of the conditioning you have accepted till now. Choose to change the story you tell yourself and your fears will dissolve like snow in the sunshine.
(Pic courtesy Flickr - Elba Fernandez)