Posted 4th May 2012 at 09:55 PM by mymondaymap
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.I believe that each person is faced with many opportunities that are presented to them. Each day we are faced with opportunities to change our life and the lives of the people around us. Both planned and unplanned opportunities are present to us each day. We are all given twenty-four hours each day, and we are allowed to determine how we spend our time. I know that each person has the same amount of time each day, but why do some people succeed while others fail. I believe that most people allow these great opportunities to go by without notice. It is important to be aware of the opportunities that are presented to you and make the most of each one. Just being aware of your opportunities is the first step to succeeding.
Once you know that you have these opportunities, the next step is taking action. Sometimes, we fail to take action when faced with a great opportunity. Let us now examine some of the factors that contribute to our failure to act. The first factor we will cover is fear of failure.
So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself -- nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Franklin D. Roosevelt
Fear of failure is one of the greatest contributors to inaction. We fear that we will fail at something, so we do not try. We are afraid that someone will find out that we have failed, and we cannot stand the idea that someone would know that we were not successful. We feel that if we do not try than we cannot fail. By not trying, we do not fail by trying, but we fail by not trying. Somehow we have convinced ourselves that failure by not trying is better than trying and failing. Where did this concept come from? Some people would say that they can never be a failure if they do not try. Somehow not exerting effort is valued over participation. I do not know about you, but I have never seen an awards ceremony where they give awards for lack of participation. "And the Wall Flower Award goes to…I would like to accept the award on behalf of…., it seem that he was invited, but he decided not to participate due to the fact that it would require effort on his part." This is a ridiculous example, but it happens every day. If you never try, you will always be a failure and, despite your best efforts, someone will figure out that you have failed. If you try something and fail, you at least have the opportunity to learn from your failure. This knowledge will give you a better chance at success in the future. In the face of fear, we should act anyway.
Life is inherently risky. There is only one big risk you should avoid at all costs, and that is the risk of doing nothing
I am reminded of a time in college when my roommates wanted to go skiing in the mountains. I had never being skiing, but I wanted to give it a try. They explained that we would all ride together and, when we got there, I would take a ski lesson while they went skiing on the big mountain. We could meet up after the lesson in the lodge. I went with them from our college to the mountains and was excited all the way there. I bought my ski lesson ticket and went to get my skis. After they fitted me for my skis, my friends asked the people in the lodge where I should go to get my lesson. They informed us that since it was a slow day and no one had asked for a lesson, they had sent the ski instructor home. Suddenly, I found myself, an hour and a half from home, wearing ski clothes and skis, with a ski lesson ticket and no ski instructor. I have to admit that I had some fear show up in that moment.
We decided that I could either sit in the car for a few hours while they went skiing, or I could go with them to the top of the mountain and they would teach me. I decided to overcome the fear of failure and try to ski. You have to remember that at nineteen your friends can talk you into anything. After a few pointers we headed to the ski lift. At the time, I believed that they had full confidence in me. In retrospect, they may have been thinking about the college rule that gives you straight A's for a semester if you roommate dies.
Procrastination is the fear of success. People procrastinate because they are afraid of the success that they know will result if they move ahead now. Because success is heavy, carries a responsibility with it, it is much easier to procrastinate and live on the 'someday I'll' philosophy.
Once we overcome the fear of failure, we sometimes experience the fear of success. Fear of Success is also one of the greatest contributors to inaction. We now become afraid that when we succeed, we will not like the outcome. We fear the possible changes that will take place in us and around us. This is just another case of the fear of the unknown. When we succeeded in a certain area where we have not succeeded before, we are in unfamiliar territory. This territory can appear very frightening. This fear stops a lot of people in their tracks. Once we have succeeded, we are sometimes afraid of not being able to continue to succeed. We have to remember that if we succeed once we should be able to succeed again, and this time it should be easier because of the knowledge we gained from the process.
When we finally made it to the top of the mountain, we created a plan for getting off the ski lift. The way I remember it was they were planning to go to the right and left of me. This would allow them to remain upright after leaving the ski lift. After some trial and error, and a good understand why you wear a ski bib, we finally come to a stop at the top of the mountain. Actually, my roommates gathered where I was lying in the snow. First they explained that the idea of skiing is not to go down the mountain, but to go across the mountain. If you do go down the mountain, you will not fail but you may break the state of Maine's land speed record. At this point, I am instructed by my roommates on how to do what they called a snowplow. This means that if you are skiing, and you need to slow down, you try to touch the front tips of your skis together, and this will slow you down. What they do not tell you is that you are now moving at a fast rate of speed, and when you point your toes inward you will be off balance. This is a lesson that sinks into your head as your head sinks into the snow. What is also sinking in is the fact that the only way down the mountain is to ski down. I had successfully made it to the top of the mountain, now I had to successfully make it to the bottom of the mountain without breaking any land speed records. I started crossing the mountain and when I got to the trees, I attempted to turn and go the other way. They had also failed to explain that this move also made you off balance. What helped myself esteem at this point, was the fact that I was been passed by a toddler on skis. I stood back up and found my lost ski and determined to make it down the mountain.
I started again going the opposite direction across the mountain. This time, when I got to the trees, I turned and did not fall. I continued crisscrossing the mountain and achieved some success. This is when the fear of success arrived, because I was now skiing and was a little fearful of my speed, so I decided that sitting down would do the trick. Whenever I would go too fast, I would just sit down. I did this all the way down the hill. For those of you keeping track, I have no idea how many times I landed in the snow that time down. I do know that I decided that the mountain would not tame me, so I went up again. You know, I only fell twice the second time and lost my fear of success in the process. I went down the mountain several more times without falling.
I learned a great lesson that day when the opportunity to ski presented itself. I took notice and took action. I did not care about the fear of failure; I knew that I would not be perfect the first time down. I also learned that the unknown that I once feared on my first trip down, I started to enjoy later on. Just think I could have sat in the car.
So today, take some time to become aware of the opportunities that are around you. After your observation, start taking action on these great opportunities that are right in front of you. If you are worried about the fear of failure think about it this way: You have an opportunity to succeed, if you try. If you take no action you have already failed. If you are worried about the fear of success, just remember, you can use the knowledge of the success process to succeed, again.
You may be wondering why this blog is different from the previous My Monday Map to Success blogs. The answer is that this blog was written by Brenton White not Tina White. As Tina has mentioned in her past blogs, she is currently working on her Master's Degree. This week, her work load has prohibited her for publishing a blog. Tonight she stated that I should help her by writing this week's blog. I become aware of the opportunity to write a blog, I decided after a few hours to take action on the opportunity that was right in front of me. I have told others that I had planned to start writing blogs, soon. Yes, during this process, I have experienced thoughts involving the fear of failure, and I also had a few thoughts on the fear of success. So now you know, this is my first blog, but I do not expect it to be my last. Go out today and take action on the opportunities that you have been given.
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