Stop Giving Yourself Permission To Fail
It's a powerful statement isn't it? Because who on earth
would ever give themselves permission to fail? But, and I
say this without any fear of contradiction, most people I
meet give themselves permission to fail time and time again.
The problem is that the permission is given without even realizing
it. I'm going to give a couple of examples of this so you
can be aware of it and so you can stop doing it.
1. An acquaintance of mine is a perfect example of the first
type. Anthony talks the talk, sure, but never manages to walk
the walk. Recently, his wife spent $1000 on a saxophone for
a birthday present because he was telling all and sundry how
determined he was to learn. 6 months on, I asked him how he
was getting on with it: "Oh, I've not started yet."
"How come?" says I.
"Well, I've had so much to do, I've just been too busy with
Having played guitar for 20 years, I thought I'd challenge
this. He became angry and aggressive, determined to demonstrate
that learning was beyond his power as other matters demanded
his time. Seeing how animated he was becoming, I didn't mention
other matters such as: drinking every night of the week during
summer; his absolutely huge DVD collection and how much time
he spends watching them; and how on Sundays he does absolutely
nothing other than eat a huge lunch and sleep most of the
afternoon - before going out for a couple of drinks in the
evening of course.
He gives himself permission to fail because he's frightened
to take action and put in the effort to learn. He then clings
to the "I'm too busy" excuse. Please be aware of how much
time you spend on pastimes that won't deliver any rewards
at all. TV, socializing, lazy days - they will rob your dreams
from you if you over-indulge them. Value time - it is a very
2. Another common way to permit failure is to ask others what
they think of your ideas and plans. Now, this is an absolute
beauty. Because most people don't consult with people who've
done something with their lives. Instead, they consult with
people who haven't done anything. They get negative feedback,
their plans are dismissed as "pie in the sky", or the classic
"if it was good everyone would do it" and plans are abandoned
on the advice of others. It absolves you of any responsibility:
"I'd have tried but others cautioned me against it" so you
can feel nice and warm and continue as before safe in the
knowledge that it isn't your fault. Wrong. It is. You give
yourself permission to fail because you allow people who don't
know any better to influence you. If you want advice about
your plans and ideas, consult with people who have done something.
Asking advice from people who have never overcome their fears
and took a risk is like asking a computer programmer to fine-tune
an engine instead of asking a qualified engineer.
3. Finally, and one of the most common: Giving yourself permission
to fail because you have a family. I've lost count of the
number of times someone has said to me: "I'd love to (move
abroad, start a business, pursue an alternative lifestyle
- whatever) but I have a family to think of so it's out of
the question now". Honestly, I hear this from friends and
acquaintances, from clients who email me, and I see it on
countless forums that I frequent. Is it valid? It certainly
isn't, in fact, it's just another way of permitting failure.
There are numerous families who decided to pursue a dream
together. Blaming family is a very cute excuse because you're
saying it's OK to fail because a family has taken your choices
away. It's a way of absolving yourself from the responsibility
of taking action so permission to fail is granted. A way to
stop this excuse is to realize that as other families achieve
dreams together, then so can yours. And the rewards will be
shared by the whole family.
Each of the above have their roots in fear. But you don't
overcome fear by giving yourself permission to fail. Why not
give yourself permission to succeed instead?
Copyright 2006 Christopher Green
Christopher Green is the author of "Conquering Fear",
the acclaimed book that shows you how to turn fear, your worst
enemy, into your most powerful ally. For a FREE preview, please
go to www.conqueringfear.net
Article Source: http://www.upublish.info