Part II of II - Last month, I shared insights on how Wishful Thinking can stagnate business progress. While Wishful Thinking is often openly expressed in a somewhat exasperated state of mind, Fearful Thinking is often not shared or spoken, but lies within one's subconscious, impeding decision making or effective action through an undermining whisper.
Are any of these Fearful Thinking mindsets impacting your business?
1. Fear of Losing Control: If you or someone within your company have been accused of micromanaging or are compelled to know every little nuance of what anyone is doing, fear of losing control is most likely at play. While believing your way is the best way combined with a desire for everyone to be effective seems reasonable, feeling a necessity to control every aspect adds a layer of stress along with implying a lack of confidence in those hired to do their jobs. Instead of feeling a need to be in control, allow everyone within your firm to take charge of their areas. You just might be surprised by the progress that is made once this is respected and nurtured.
2. Fear of Letting Go: Different than a need to be in control, a fear of letting go is a combination of having high expectations and standards along with a hesitancy to venture beyond what you currently know or have been doing. This is reflected in continuing to take on responsibilities or handling tasks that could and should be handled by someone else. You fool yourself into believing that your handling it is your best option, even when it isn't something you really enjoy doing in the first place. Letting go of anything that is not where your heart, passions and competency lie will enable your business to flourish through others more qualified to handle these tasks and responsibilities in the first place.
3. Fear of Success: You are a high achiever and are determined to accomplish whatever you set out to do. As a result, you have been exposed to many people, some of whom were viewed as successful, but not of the character or level of integrity that you believe is important to possess. This concerns you to the point that you fear success would change you in a way that you don’t want to be. The key here is to define success on your own terms, and no one else's. Only then can you ride your own wave of success that is gratifying and fulfilling.
4. Fear of Failure: You are driven by an underlying need to prove you are worthy and capable. You are your own worst critic to the point of not being able to truly see and appreciate what you have overcome, but rather focus instead on what you view as failed attempts or results. Failure is an illusion. While the result may not have been what was desired, it is still a result, helping you see what did not work so you can learn, shift and seek what can work. Any set back is merely a set up for your ultimate success.
5. Fear of Being Ordinary: You are a daredevil who enjoys being stimulated with a variety of interests, constant activity and many irons in the fire. You have many ideas and inspirations that excite you, but they also can distract you to the point that nothing seems to move forward as you continuously bounce from one thing to another. Your desire to be exceptional could be an underlying fear of not wanting to be viewed as ordinary. Release this fear by becoming a maverick at turning your inspirations and ideas into tangible assets through bringing on board the right taskmasters to bring them into reality.
Understand that fear is merely a manifestation in your way of thinking that can easily be replaced by the reality of what you are truly capable of doing and being. Then you will be gratified and psyched up about the real impact and progress you can make in your business.
Sherré DeMao is author of the nationally acclaimed books, 50 Marketing Secrets of Growth Companies in Down Economic Times, www.50marketingsecrets.com, and Me, Myself & Inc., www.memyselfandinc.com, Her column seeks to help business owners build and grow sustainable enterprises and businesses with economic value and preference in the marketplace.