Fear of Success Is Real – Why I Struggle With Self-Sabatoge

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Fear of Success Is Real - Why I Struggle With Self-Sabatoge

It’s fine. It’s perfectly fine. Everything is fine.

That’s what I repeat to myself when things are going well. When all the bills are paid, the kids are loving each other, and my husband and I are hitting a stride. When work opportunities are coming in left and right, and it seems like all of my friends and acquaintances are actually happy for me. When the good stuff starts coming. Why do I have to repeat this during a time when I shouldn’t need to? Because, fear of success is real.

I struggle with self-sabatoge. If you aren’t familiar with this lovely human trait, be thankful. Self-sabatoge is when your behavior creates problems and interferes with long-standing goals. Basically, it’s when you’re expecting the other shoe to drop, so you shake that thing off to make it happen sooner. My behaviors of choice vary; from pulling at my hair, to eating irresponsibly, throwing my robe on and getting back in bed, ignoring work emails because I’m not deserving of what’s being offered to me, avoiding family members, creating friction within my most valuable relationships, and — my personal favorite — diving into helping other people achieve their dreams, so I feel better about allowing mine to die a miserable death.

Why Is Fear Of Success Real?

The amazing thing about being a human on the face of the earth is that we’re already winning. You woke up today? Congratulations. You have clothes to wear, and shoes on your feet? Yup, you’re a winner. We know this to be true, yet we make SURE we don’t grow. We think “this is enough. I don’t need anymore. I’m good for now.” We lie to ourselves. The lies stem from not wanting to lose friends who aren’t ready to reach where we’re going, or from past interactions with family members who placed their fears onto your life. Success is inevitable. It’s us that tries to get in its way. I’ve tried so many times. Admittedly, I still try to do it.

Downplaying The Blessing

While I shared some of my forms of self-sabotage a few you may also experience, downplaying the blessing is a behavior I see in fellow self-sabotagers. Those that fear success tend to fall into successful situations. I’m not sure if it’s because this is a constant test for us, or because most self-sabatogers are perfectionists, so we’ve already worked hard to reach these goals. An outpouring of blessings happen, and our job is to acknowledge, thank, and celebrate. What we choose to do instead is to downplay the blessing. We disconnect ourselves from what we’ve achieved by giving someone else the credit. Our mama, our best friend, our 4th grade teacher. While they may have been pillars in your life, YOU were the one blessed. Why can’t we just accept the joy, love, and abundance that’s trickling into our lives?

The good news is, no matter how hard we try, we can’t get in our own way. You are meant for big things, whether you like it or not.

Nothing awful has to happen because you’re surrounded by good at the moment.

Everything good will happen, even if you decide it won’t.

Check your tribe for fellow self-sabotagers. Call it out. Make a change, or let them go.

See a therapist. Let them help you.

Acknowledge this fault, and stop being ashamed of it.

It’s fine. It’s perfectly fine. Everything is fine.

About Amiyrah

My name is Amiyrah and I'm an an African American fashion & lifestyle blogger based in Ohio.

Plan Your Year Now!


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  1. 3.15.18
    Bernetta said:

    I know exactly what you mean. The good news is that you have acknowledge that you do this, so its easier to recognize it. You’re not alone. Go forth and WIN! You deserve all the good things.

  2. 3.16.18
    Andrea said:

    Oh I love this hard! I’m definitely guilty of this and I’m working on it. Love that you shared. ❤️