Ephesians 4:28 says: "Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth."
Our quote for today is from Ambrose Bierce. He said: "A person who doubts himself is like a man who would enlist in the ranks of his enemies and bear arms against himself. He makes his failure certain by himself being the first person to be convinced of it."
Today, in the Get Things Done podcast we are continuing with part 4 of our series titled, "Overcoming the Fear of Success".
How do you distinguish between genuine inadequacy and low self-esteem?
I wish there were some kind of litmus test that could be used to determine the difference, because it's the central question every person faces in deciding whether to try for any ambitious goal: "Do I have what it takes, or don't I?" No one can answer that question for you. Sometimes you can't answer it for yourself, either, until you've attempted the task and risked the possibility of getting in over your head, making up your mind that you'll give it your best effort anyway.
Let me just say this: chances are, your fear stems from a faulty self-image rather than from incompetence. If you have a set goal for yourself, it is probably something that you could achieve and could handle after achieving it if you would only make your move. Instead we all tend to sell ourselves short, underestimating our abilities. I referred earlier to the belief of distinguished psychologists that most humans use only a small portion of their potential, a belief shared, I think, by all thoughtful observers of the human condition. This means that you have a vast reservoir of unused talent and capability available to you. but if procrastination and timidity keep you from ever opening the floodgates, the reservoir might as well be empty.
Galatians 6:9 says: "And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not."
Our quote for today is from Denis Waitley. He said: "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 do it' philosophy."
Today, in the Get Things Done podcast we are continuing with part 3 of our series titled, “Overcoming the Fear of Success”.
Caution and fear of success are totally different things. It is prudent, of course, to avoid unnecessary risk and to set attainable goals (which presumably would not include such feats as flying near the sun on wax wings). But having established attainable goals, you should strive wholeheartedly to attain them. You should not be held back by procrastination -- or any other self-defeating behavior -- in order to hinder your progress toward those objectives you've decided are worth striving for.
What it all comes down to is dealing with yourself in a manner that is forthright and logical, instead of devious and irrational. If, for some good reason, you've really decided not to do something, then for heaven's sake don't do it. But having made that decision, eliminate the thing from your mind. Don't let it remain there in the guise of something you're "going to get around to one of these days." The accumulation of a bunch of these pseudo-objectives has a debilitating effect; their insistent nagging diverts you from the matters at hand and prevents you from enjoying your leisure time with a clear conscience.
There's much satisfaction to be had in crossing a difficult item off your "To Do" list once it has been done -- but there's almost as much in crossing it off just because you've decided that you definitely don't want to do it after all! The procrastinator doesn't get that satisfaction -- he just leaves the task on his mental "To Do" list where it festers indefinitely. So the person who procrastinates because of fear of success puts himself in a no-win situation: he tells himself that he should do certain things, but at the same time at a subconscious level he orders himself not to do those things, and through procrastination evades any resolution of the two conflicting commands.
One is reminded of the prayer of St. Augustine said he offered as a young man: "Give me chastity and continence, but not just now."