Wednesday, July 13, 2011

You Are Keeping Yourself FromIt

Opportunity occurs every day. How many times do you self-select out of an opportunity? If you see your perfect job do you put together your best application and hope for the best? Or do you think that you aren't good enough and not even try?

Some things are worth turning away from. A friend asked me to join an affiliate of Amway a few years ago. No thanks. I don't regret that decision, for me, it wasn't the opportunity that I wanted. Choosing not to take an opportunity is different than allowing your self-doubt to take it away.

Sometimes, the hardest part of doing something new is getting past your internal voice. In
"Linchpin" Seth Godin talks about the lizard brain. The lizard brain likes the status quo because it feels safe. In many cases, the threat of failure is far less than the perception. If you paint a painting, write a book, or try to bake bread, and it turns out terribly, what is the real threat? Mostly, wasted time or effort. For the most part, no one knows about the failure. If you try a thousand times, again the only failure is to yourself. There isn't a scoreboard, and there isn't really a huge audience.

What about that job? Sure, there are a few people that might know, but honestly, they aren't thinking about you as a person as a failure. Your application might be reviewed, and it might be selected, or it may not. The person screening the application is not judging anything but the qualifications of the applicants to the qualifications needed for the position. If you interview, the team wants you to be a great interview. As challenging as the questions may be, they are not hoping you fail.

As I write this, my six-year old asked me what I am doing. I told her I was writing for my blog. She said "For you?" Yes sweetie, for me. As much as I hope someone reads this, I am doing this for me. Because it makes me uncomfortable. Because it hurts a little when no one reads it. Ultimately, because it doesn't matter. If this post goes off into the Internet forever never to be seen, the only pain is that which I cause myself. Growing beyond the fear of failure and the chains of self-doubt is a struggle worth having.

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