Are you limiting yourself by being realistic?
Do you carry a bag full of limiting beliefs? Beliefs about who you are and what you can’t do and accomplish? The fear of disappointment makes us say that we are ‘being realistic’ about something when the truth is that we don’t have the courage to do it. Why is it that so many of us are convinced that since we did not succeeded in the past we will not succeed in the future?
The 9th Grade Experience
I am afraid a lot. Mostly I am afraid of making mistakes and being yelled at and ridiculed. This fear was established back in 9th grade.
(If you think about it, it quite scary how a bad experience so many years ago still affects the way I live my life…)
Spawned in Dungeons
So what happened back then? Well in 9th grade we had a horrible math teacher. He was so mean he must have been spawned in some dark place that makes Mordor look like Disneyworld.
This guy scared the shit out of everyone: Children as well as teachers. Even the principal feared this read bearded man. He wore old clogs that made his steps echo through the school corridors as he approached the next class room on his list of torture.
Ridiculing the Students
So what did this demon do that was so bad? Well, his specialty was ridiculing students. He enjoyed calling us stupid or worse and anyone who didn’t have the answer to a math problem he threatened to expel from the class.
One day this teacher had me standing in front of the class answering a math question. The question was very simple, however, I was so afraid that I couldn’t even remember my own name. As I stood there all red in the face, stuttering and sweating my brain decided that I am not good at math.
That day was critical and laid a bad foundation for many, many years to come. My brain made a wrong conclusion and is still totally convinced that math is equal to pain: Let’s be realistic: I am not good at math so I will not even try.
Faking Coughing Attacks
This fear of being ridiculed stays with me. Even today, many years, later I am afraid of doing calculations or answering any mathematical problem. Even though I know how to solve a problem my fear of being wrong stops me from doing it.
The fear of being ridiculed if I get the wrong answer makes me procrastinate; I go to the bath room. I reboot my cellphone or fake a coughing attack; Whatever it takes I will do it.
Reward Require Risk
Taking into consideration that I work in sales behaving like this is off course not benefiting my career ambitions. So I am slowly learning to overcome the fear of being ridiculed. My common sense tells me that if I want something in life I need to get over this fear – reward require risk.
Quite early in our relationship my husband discovered my issue with numbers. He is now on a mission on helping me so he enjoys having me doing small calculations at random. No matter if we are driving, walking or about to fall asleep. Out of the blue he gives me a question for me to solve that involves numbers and preferable percentage calculations. I admit; I don’t always salute this approach – but there’s no doubt that it helps me.
Decisions that are worthwhile and important to me require me to go against the 9th grade conditioning of my brain. Just like Mirjana did when she was scared
There is no way around it: Facing my fear every single day is necessary in order to stop being realistic.
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