"Failure's hard, but success is far more dangerous. If you're successful at the wrong thing, the mix of praise and money and opportunity can lock you in forever." - Po Bronson

Which do you fear more - success or failure? This question is much more complicated than it seems on the surface. As per the quote above, there are many, many layers...

The first question is, "What does success look like for you?" If you answered - a big house, cool car, no debt - that's not quite what I'm referring to. I would be looking for answers more along the lines of: I jump out of bed in the morning and can't wait to start my day, I'm living my passion, I LOVE what I do, I KNOW I am doing my work in the world - I am sharing my gifts with others...etc. I would recommend that you get really clear on what success looks like for you.

I believe that if we are not doing the work we are meant to do (rather than the work we fall into or end up doing by default) that we will often come up against, or more specifically subconsciously create, our own sabotage event to keep us from truly reaching the ledge we're so busy striving for. We're close, we feel like we're getting there, but we never quite hit our stride - or perhaps we do hit our stride, but we feel unfulfilled because our stride is taking us down a path that is further and further away from where we truly want to be (rather than what we think we want to have).

Our fear of failure, on the surface, may look like one thing, but is likely something else altogether. Typically we will look at a fear of failure as not being able to meet our career or relationship goals - goals set by ourselves, by our higher-ups, by our company, by our shareholders, family, customers, etc. I call these surface failures, as they are all an illusion comprised of your own judgments and the judgments of others - real or perceived.

I believe that the much greater and more powerful fear of failure comes from our fear that if we were to truly stand in our power and choose to walk the path of our passion and share our gifts with the world, that we would somehow come up lacking. That we would not quite be enough, that we wouldn't measure up (although we rarely consider whose measuring stick we're so concerned about). Stepping out of the comfort of the corporate world and jumping head first into walking into my power to share my gifts with the world has been nothing short of terrifying.

With the comfortable illusion of surface fears in the corporate world, I could create walls to block out the criticism of others - it's just a job. I could work harder to accomplish all of my goals while I work myself into the ground and put my family and health at risk. Then again, there was also the safety net of simply getting another job. I could even jump into another arena altogether...there was always an escape route.

When you choose to walk in your power and be true to your spirit, your path and your gifts, there are no walls, there is no escape route, you are putting yourself out there, naked as it were, for all the world to see. Faith in yourself is paramount. However, as much as it may sound as if this path is much more restrictive without all of the safeguards we are used to - in reality, it is absolute freedom. Freedom to be your authentic self, freedom to choose to be who you really are. It is difficult to find the words to explain my experience with this - except to say that I feel full - full of light, full of love, full with a plethora of opportunities before me, but more importantly, full of WHO I AM.

Author's Bio: 

Formerly an IT Consultant designing and implementing global enterprise learning solutions for Fortune 500 organizations, Trish is now an author, Shamanic Healer and Spiritual Coach living on Vancouver Island, BC. With her husband, she operates Choose2Live. Their mission is to: Educate and Inspire People to Wake Up and Consciously Choose2Live!
Learn more at www.thequestionjourney.com