Is fear getting in your way? What do I do if I never seem to succeed in the plans God has for me? Can I overcome obscurity, poverty or mediocrity? If there is fear in your life, it can be overcome through Christ. Sometimes, it is helpful to recognize the root of it and in so doing, you can be alert to distractions that arise. I find myself getting distracted whenever accomplishment is close… because I have felt tentative about success. Here’s my story as outlines in my blog, “A Life Examined” at http://sarahtunexaminelife.blogspot.com: Obscurity. What is the opposite of success? Obscurity is the opposite of success. Do you know a cure for fear of success? Self knowledge is the cure for fear of success… at least it is for me. A couple of weeks ago I spoke on the subject of Fear… not I branched into the subject of Fear of Success. I have continued to think about this issue, because until recently I’d not put my finger on why I am afraid of success. Now, I believe I have discovered the cause. Last week I reached out, stretched forth, eager and willing to strain toward success and overcoming fear. Then, I hit on the root cause or the essence of my fear. Allow me to explain. As an author, in order to achieve success my name needs to be recognized so that my words and my books will be read. Now, thanks to Lance Wallnau (“Take All 7” (c) 2008, Lance Learning Group), an expert and public speaker on personal and organizational transformation, I’ve recognized my own hand in my failure. What provokes failure? In my case, success has eluded me because I’ve shrunk from notoriety. I have held onto my identity as a person who is unknown. I have done so because – at least in my perception – my peer group, who has different aspirations and interests, exists in relative obscurity. While I’ve worked hard to perfect my writing craft and have sought to grow as a person with a worthwhile message, in secret I’ve wanted to maintain the status quo… I have remained obscure and have resisted the very success I have worked so hard to achieve, because I’ve clung to my peer group. I have feared the notoriety I need to become successful. In order to succeed, I need to allow my identity to change… I need to allow myself to connect with a different set of peers. I don’t mean I can’t keep my friends. I mean I need to allow myself to reach into an identity that has a set of peers who is ‘successful’, who has the sort of notoriety I need in order to be successful. I have friends and acquaintances that excel in their work. But for the most part, I don’t have friends or acquaintances who strive for the public recognition that I strive for. In fact, the thought of belonging in a peer group of famed people intimidates me. And that is what has held me back. I have feared success because I’ve feared relating to people of that sort of success. How do I change? My attitude needs to grow into one of accepting all people and of recognizing that notoriety is just a facet of some people’s lives. Without allowing myself the recognition I need to draw people to buy my books, I’m not going to succeed. I need to allow myself to entertain the notion of belonging to a different set of peers. I need to face the fear of loneliness. I need to allow myself to accept this new set of peers before I meet them, so that I can accept myself as a part of this peer group. I need to accept myself as a person of notoriety; I need to accept who I will be as a person of success. I need to trust that I will not be different just because my position is different. And I need to be willing to allow myself to be in that different position. Last week I said I was eager to soar. Now I need to spread my wings. I need to embrace whatever encounter I may have with whatever set of people I may encounter. Then, I will no longer fear the recognition I need to build, and I will be ready to succeed. God bless and a Happy August to all!