You know what’s really sad?
People like Michael Jackson, Muhammad Ali and Mother Theresa.
No, I’m not bringing the hate. It’s just that… there’s so few of them. Highly accomplished and recognized people who started with nothing. They went for gigantic dreams through numerous challenges.
Have you ever dreamt of creating an amazing legacy? Admit it. You have. Even for a brief moment. What would accomplishing that feel like for you? Why aren’t you already pursuing your dreams? Your life, your work would be such an inspiration to thousands, even millions of people!
I know why.
Because, even though you may not admit it, you’re terrified. That awkward ball of snot called Fear is stopping you. It comes in many disgusting flavors.
In this article, I’m going to tell you a number of common fears that cause procrastination, so that you can kill the ones holding you back.
Procrastination is a thief. A parasite. It sucks valuable things like self-worth, productivity, time, happiness and life from your soul. If you have even a tiny, itsy, bitsy, ounce of self-respect, then reading this should piss you off.
I want you to live boldly and courageously. To pursue your highest ambitions, succeed & help others do the same. Tony Robbins says the secret to happiness is growth and contribution. Now, THAT’s what I call making the world a better place.
Let’s bring out some of the annoying skeletons from your closet.
Fear of Failure & Perfectionism
Do you feel that unless you perform perfectly that you’re flawed and inadequate? You may unknowingly be a perfectionist, because you wanna be so good that you can’t ever be judged as imperfect and unlovable.
Your self-worth is tied to your ability and performance, meaning “if you don’t produce perfect results, you’re not worth much”. Yikes! Of course that will make you procrastinate! I mean, “what if I give it my all only to fall flat on my face?! What will people say about me when they see me fail?! Oh, the terror!”.
Fear of Success
Can you relate?
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?…”
(By Marianne Williamson)
At the core, you believe that you have to choose between success and love. You sabotage your own success. “What?! I wanna succeed! Look at all the effort I’m making”, you say. If you reach success, then you believe painful consequences will follow. Because,
- That might make people jealous of you.
- You might drift away from your family or spouse.
- You may have to give up on your current friends.
- You could hurt someone.
- You might have to become someone else.
- You might be “too perfect” and scare people away.
- You feel unworthy of success (very low self-esteem).
- You’ve done bad things in life and now you’re punishing yourself for it.
- Someone might attack you in some way if you succeed. “It’s a dog eat dog world”.
- “Success will be too much work and just not worth it”.
Fear of Losing Control
You’ve got two horns on your head, a pitch fork and a long, sharp tail, lol. You’re a rebel, because you hate being controlled. In demanding situations where there’s not much you can do, you become passive aggressive.
For example, you turn in your report late, knowing very well that your boss depends on it. Not having it will make him look bad in front of his boss. That secretly gives you satisfaction. “Who is he to tell me what to do?”
To you, losing control means that you’re less valuable. Your self-worth comes from your ability to defy control and do work on your terms. You’ll go to any lengths to maintain your sense of independence, even if you have to sabotage for yourself. Sadly, in the end, you’re only screwing yourself.
Why you do it?
Probably because an authority figure in your life (like a stern father or teacher) has always undermined you and told you what to do. You didn’t get to express your own free will enough. Procrastination makes you feel in control.
Fear of Intimacy or Separation
Are you afraid of being too close to someone? How about being too lonely and unable to handle life on your own? Chances are you’re using procrastination to regulate your relations. Being out of your comfort zone in relationships can be so uncomfortable that you’ll go to great lengths to maintain equilibrium, even if it comes with negative consequences.
What Fear Does To You
Imagine that you’re an army of 100,000 men marching to the battlefield of life. Each soldier represents a resource you have: a skill, an insight, a compelling reason, a lesson, a direction, an ally, etc.
You know what fear does to you in life?
A part of that army is too afraid to fail, so it goes back home. Another group doesn’t believe in its’ abilities to learn new skills, so it too leaves. One part is afraid of missing something on Netflix. Yet, another is afraid of what people will say. Then we have those who believe that they don’t even deserve success.
Only a puny group of your soldiers arrive at the arena that is your life, with only marshmallows as ammunition – against challenging armies: graduating from school with excellent grades, finding a great job, finding and keeping your dream partner, pursuing your highest purpose, death, betrayal, etc.
Death will come to us all. Are you gonna live courageously or let fear control you?
Don’t be a marshmallow warrior.