Fear of success

Discussion in 'Psychology' started by Girlpower, Jul 9, 2003.

  1. I was reading an article in a women's magazine this morning, which was talking about failing because of being afraid of succeeding. I thought to myself this is interesting indeed.

    I wonder for how many people this is an issue for in trading, because success in trading is financially life changing in many ways, and can easily push people into a world where they can lose their friends, not be accepted by a new group of which they are not really a part, cause envy in others and all sorts of negative spin offs as well as the obvious positive ones.

    It does make me wonder, when very often we are our ow worst enemies and hold ourselves back from doing what we know we should, and simply not have the self-discipline to carry things through. I really could see direct paralels in this.

    Curious what others think. Is it fear of failure that makes people trade scared or fear of success? or behaps a bit of both?

  2. Things must be very different between men and women, because the fear of success has never ever crossed my mind. Financial success has not been a fear, it's been a primary goal. As far as what others think, that has always had very little effect on me. I'm pretty much a solitary kind of person and the more I interact with others, the more I realize I rather enjoy being alone or with the family only.

    In summation, it sounds like a load of garbage printed in a girly magazine to me :D

    (and just so I'm fair and balanced, if they printed it in Maxim or Playboy, I'd say it sounded like a load of garbage printed in a little boy's magazine ... heh)
  3. They wright all kinds of BS in women's magazines. That is why they need one, because stupid stuff like that won't fly in mens mags.

    I guess they feel excited about failure then. :cool:
  4. Natalie, how old, baby??

  5. I would say it is a bit of both. I'd also guess that the female experience is somewhat different from the male experience. Women, I think, are influenced and trained at a very young age not to exceed the success of males. Insofar as this is true I would say women would be more inclined to fear success. On the other hand males are expected to succeed, thrive, excel in competition, yada...yada.... and in this regard I would guess males would be more inclined towards fear of failure.

    Either way it is about meeting expectations. I have been learning from golf that when one expects 'x' it becomes much less likely. The key for me is not to expect any result, but rather set a goal and focus on the tasks required to achieve that goal. The expectations are dealt with when the goal is set. Goals must be set with self-awareness and honesty. So long as this is true they can be, for the most part, forgotten whence the tasks of achieving the goal are undertaken.

    :) rlb
  6. Brandonf

    Brandonf ET Sponsor

    I think it definatly depends on where you come from. If you grew up around successful people you will have that group of friends anyway. If you are trying to change your life though I know it is very hard. I don't have very many of the same friends anymore that I did before I started to make money with trading and my website. In the end I am happier because I have acheived a goal that I very much wanted, but there is a cost to everything in life. Nothing is free.
  7. Jake777


    I have a fear of success. I know it. I've seen myself on the verge of success (getting what I want) and basically just psyching myself out and losing too many times.

    I don't know exactly what it is. It may be because I came from a poor background. The reasoning is that if I become successful and rich, I think that I might be betraying the people like my family and friends who are poor, in a certain way. You know, becoming unlike them and in the process, betraying those who truly stuck with me when I didn't really have a future.

    It sounds silly as hell because if that's the way I think, why would I work so hard? I don't know. Maybe it's this contradiction that's killing me.

    Anyway, I really have seen this fear of success too many times in traders and other people. Why do some pro atheletes choke at key moments when they have all the talent in the world? Just when they're about to win? Look at Phil Mickelson. He wins everything but the majors. He has the talent to do it, he put in the work necessary to win, he trained hard enough, but he has never won it. Why? I've seen him collapse a lot. Greg Norman too. WHy does Armando Benitez with great stuff always seem to fail to save big games? He has the mentality of a great closer, he has the saves to prove it, and he has great pitches. But in big games, he always seems to blow it, in the most painful ways. Not by giving up a grand slam or anything, but by walking in a run. or giving up a key single. or letting the other team tie it up so the Mets lose in extra innings. I see the dude on the mound, and he seems to be punching himself with the left arm and punching himself with the right arm. Like he's fighting himself.

    Ahhhh well. I'm not a shrink. I only took an intro psych course in college. What do I know.

  8. CalTrader

    CalTrader Guest

    Youve' got to be kidding ? "Fear" of success ? The only thing an entrepreneur should be afraid of - but not paralized by - is fear of failure and that fear is healthy and keeps one in perspective and keeps one the right track.

    Do your homework, work hard, and dont worry about success: it will come and it certainly is nothing to fear ......
  9. jasrlew


    I think Fear of Success could easily be substituted for Fear of Change or Fear of the Unknown where I don't think the previous two examples would replace Fear of Failure.

    Fear of Success means you fear more responsibility, fear of bearing a heavier weight on your shoulders and you fear the fear of failing after you've been successful.

    Fear of Failure means you've told yourself you suck and can't do it, period. And you must then go to Plan B.
  10. Atlantic


    maybe one could have fear of success because he expects that big success might also create big pressure - the pressure of being continually successful - and the fear of failure in maintaining success. the fear of reaching the next level.

    hope this makes sense ...
    #10     Jul 9, 2003