Blogging brings out the worst fears in us.
I consider myself a pretty level-headed person and when I started blogging, I never knew I would be grappling with so many fears on a daily basis.
But blogging has left me exposed naked and vulnerable to criticisms and failure and forcing me out from my comfort zone.
It’s kind of amazing that I have carried on despite these fears because I was living dangerously close to getting a depression.
I’m an extremely private person and obviously, I have never been too comfortable with the idea that I have to be open to scrutiny from unknown people from all over the Internet.
I even contemplated writing under a pseudonym and to develop a different persona.
I’m glad that I didn’t because, on hindsight, I feel that if I was to hide under a pen name and a false persona, I would have never been able to come out my shell where for many years I had built my own comfort zone.
In the beginning, I didn’t tell people that I have started my own blog. I did tell a few friends of mine who I knew wouldn’t criticise or ridicule me. They were friends within my comfort zone.
I was reluctant to show my other friends and colleagues falling outside the ‘zone’ that I was writing things on Internet Marketing, SEO and the stuff.
I created a Facebook page but I didn’t invite all my friends to like it.
I never used to share any of my blog posts on my personal timeline.
I myself consider this behaviour slightly strange on my part because I knew I could push up my blog traffic if I shared my content on the social media.
That is why I could never carry out the social media marketing strategy on a full scale.
I deliberately never allowed myself to tweet anything related to my blog,
On the other hand, I was desperate to see some traffic on my blog.
Yet why was I hesitant to tell everyone that I have my own blog now?
I secretly wanted people to share my content on their social media but they couldn’t because they didn’t know that I was writing blog posts.
Otherwise, I’m sure they would have happily shared all my content and maybe even purchased things from my website.
So, why this seemingly abnormal behaviour from me?
What was I afraid of?
Was I afraid of success?
Why was I letting my own fears hold me back from achieving success?
Stuck in Our Comfort Zones
Our failure to achieve success stems mostly from our inability or unwillingness to come out of our shell.
Most of the time, we live in our make-believe world playing out our wildest fantasies unable to free ourselves from the shackles of our comfort zone. In this world of ours, we are our own kings and our own victims frozen in our paths preventing us from moving forward in life.
We daydream and we remain bound by our inaction.
We are own harshest critics but we are intolerant of criticisms from other people.
For many years, we wish for an activity that we truly love and to earn money out of it.
We admire those artists who rise up from obscurity purely on the strength of their talent to become successful, both artistically and financially.
We admire those famous sportspersons.
These people made money doing the very things they love.
One could argue that money is only incidental to these persons and happened as an accompaniment to doing things they love doing.
Some of us are predisposed to be failures because we build around us an impenetrable wall that blocks all elements or opportunities for success.
We are happy within the walls of this comfort zone.
When we see an opportunity knocking at us, we fail to get hold of it as if we are afraid of success.
This fear of success is a real fear and it exterminates all our dreams for making our own mark in our life.
When you have this fear, your blogging activity can be disastrous and frustrating.
It can make blogging seem like a wasteful exercise.
Blogging and the Fear Factor
If you are an introverted person, blogging could be perceived as the direct antithesis to your reserved nature.
Success in blogging requires that you free yourself from your self-contained life and be open to the world.
A blog is more like a personal online memoir and you cannot afford to remain a recluse in the online world.
The name of the game is to become visible online.
Blogging forces you out from your comfort zone and puts you squarely in uncomfortable settings like:
Vulnerable to criticism and of being judged
You are going to put yourself under the scanner for the whole world to judge you, your words and your intentions. You might need to put up with snide remarks about your writings, your style, and the diction. Some people do not take kindly to the fact that you’re making money through your blog. These people feel that everything on the internet is free and that when you actually try to sell your expertise for a price, they start judging you. You might need to handle mean people who will try to be really nasty with you and troll you.
Being in the spotlight all the time
If you are the type of person who does not like the spotlight to fall on you, blogging can become daunting because when you achieve success, the spotlight’s going to be on you. For some people, the thought that thousands of people are constantly looking at them and their work can freak them out.
Living with the Imposter Syndrome.
The Imposter Syndrome is real for many people. There are people who can never accept that they are successful. These people live with uncomfortable thoughts that their success came more as a chance happening and that it’s not going to last long. Plagued by self-doubts, they are under the persistent fear of being found out as “frauds” by the people. Blogging, in some people, amplifies this fear. They are weighed down by the constant fear of not being able to cope up with the expectations of the people.
Self-doubts and self-limiting feelings
Some people have serious self-doubts about their ability. As a blogger, this is harmful to you because you’ll need to keep on creating fresh content and if you yourself do not believe in your ability as a writer, then it could limit your creativity.
Disliking social media platforms
Some people do not like to be on the social media and remain invisible there by choice. At the same time, there are people who have only a closed circle of friends, colleagues and family members and relatives in their social media network. However, for a blog to be successful, social media marketing is almost indispensable.
So, you see, blogging can be extremely challenging for some people.
Not because of their inadequacies but because they have the real fear of success.
Blogging puts your ability to handle this fear to the test.
Symptoms of the Fear of Success – Do You Have Them?
Fear is a powerful emotion and is not necessarily a bad thing.
Fear is one of our basic survival instincts and in little to moderate doses, it can actually be a powerful element to steer us from a bad situation and towards success.
But at the same time, fear can paralyse you in your path and keep you in a never-ending spell of inactivity.
Fear has no place in blogging.
It has to be overcome. You have to control it.
The inability to rein in your fear of success can spell doom for your blogging aspiration.
Let’s see if you have any of the classic symptoms.
Success has a different meaning for different persons and as such, the symptoms might not be the same for all people.
Do you have any of these symptoms?
There are real procrastination and those that originate from your fear of success. If it is the latter, then it is something that cannot be shrugged off easily. It will be the hardest to stop too.
All planning and no action
If you are a good planner with no real action, you are a prime candidate for suffering from fear of success. You need to take a good look at this behaviour of yours to rule out the possibility of it having its origins in your fear of success.
Inability to focus on one thing at a time
Are you easily distracted? Is it difficult for you to focus on one thing at a time?
Control Your Fears with Blogging
While your innermost fears and insecurities can ruin your blogging dream, can we see it from a different perspective?
Where, you know, blogging becomes the panacea for your fear of success.
Blogging, for many people can be the mirror that reflects all their insecurities and the reasons that have plagued them all along. It gives definitive pointers to all things that have been stopping you from achieving success in life.
When we start blogging, all our innermost fears and insecurities come to the fore and we become more aware of how deep and wide our comfort zone is.
We get to meet then the very obstacles to our success – fear, lack of focus, distraction, perfectionism, conflict and our own ego.
While blogging tests your patience and determination, it also gives you a sense of purpose in your life.
It yanks you out of your comfort zone and empowers you to face your own demons.
When I started blogging, I was never aware of my inadequacies and why I was not able to activate my true potential in whatever I do.
I was pessimistic, cynical and hypersensitive to criticisms – all traits that were symptomatic of my fear of success.
I used to procrastinate a lot despite my dreaming big and my yearning for success in life.
I was thriving (or was it rotting away?) in mediocrity.
However, all these changed the day I decided to start a blog of my own.
I needed a creative outlet and to channelise my energy towards an activity that I truly enjoy.
And I enjoy writing.
I enjoy putting down my deepest thoughts on paper (or computer screens).
I like connecting with people through my writings.
It was a turning point in my life.
It was as if I found the true meaning of life.
But things were not easy for me because very soon I had to confront my own ghosts.
It was not easy to come of my comfort zone and put myself in an unfamiliar terrain.
I had to overcome my fear of being judged and ridiculed behind my back.
I had to open up to unknown people.
I had to resist the temptation to remain anonymous because I was not looking for publicity.
But I soon realised that I had to overcome my uneasiness to put myself out there.
I had to put myself in the shoes of my readers.
People do not like faceless entities.
They like someone who’s approachable and who sounds like the person they have already met.
Nobody likes a person who himself is uncomfortable coming out in the open and who seems insecure (as if they have something to hide).
This lack of self-confidence gets more pronounced when you blog.
However, the beauty is – in trying to achieve success in blogging, you make many adjustments and changes in your attitude and life in general.
In the end, you are transformed.
Blogging can, for many people, be the vehicle for change.
Blogging empowers you to let go of the little things in life that have been holding you back from achieving success and reaching your true potential.
I would like hear what you have to say about blogging being the harbinger of change.
Please comment below with your thoughts on it.