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The Illusions of Success and Failure

Opposite Ends of the Same Pole

For most of my life, I have been afraid of failing. If I tried something and didn’t understand it or didn’t do it right, I felt I wasn’t as intelligent as others or that I didn’t measure up to the expectations of parents, teachers, and society. In effect, I was a failure. The funny thing is I have also been afraid of success. Any time I came close to realizing a dream or becoming successful, my mind would come up with all sorts of road blocks, telling me I didn’t deserve the success or that I wasn’t capable. Those road blocks paralyzed me and kept me from my dream. All this did was reinforce to me that I was a failure. Even when I made it past my mind’s road blocks and achieved something, I still felt like a failure deep down, no matter how many I had. …

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