My earliest memory of failure is when I was in ballet class. I don’t recall how old I was but I am guessing I was somewhere between 8 and 11 years old, so in primary school. Even now I cringe at the memory of Mme. whatever her name was, with her grey bun, skinny body and constantly smoking her cigarettes. Kind of like Cruella De’Ville, the cartoon evil character from the Disney movie ‘101 Dalmatians’. She was mean and strict, the kind of teacher who had favorites, as I recall.
Anyway, the doomsday came in front of an audience, which included my Mom, it was after an examination to go onto the next level of classes. If there were a dozen in the class, 10 got the highest score possible ‘exceptional mention’ or whatever it was called which came with the approval and appraisal of this instructor along with big smiles and hugs, and just 2 of us got ‘honerable mention’ the lowest score possible and barely a glance when she handed out our booby prizes, she looked slightly disgusted, embarrassed perhaps. ‘These are the failures, just these 2, we dont ‘say’ fail, of course, but we all know’, she may have well said. I was devastated.
Strange thing is, I thought I was quite good at the ballet before that and enjoyed it. When so many were receiving the highest score, I thought for sure she would call my name, I was shocked and humiliated by what followed. I have never been one to cry much, throughout my life, but I did cry later with my Mom.
So here began my ‘fear of failure’ character. I will face my fear of failure and begin the process to eliminate it from /within my very beingness, in and out. This I will do by examining the 4 dimensions of this thinking pattern: thought/backchat/reactions/behavior
To do this, I will use an example from today, as I had faced the point of ‘knowing/thinking ‘I will not complete my daily blogging‘ task because of other responsibilities of family/job/school.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to become ‘fear of failure’.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to, as fear of failure, not realize that I have related to/participated in the initial thought (like a single picture frame/pixel in my mind) of a clock, representing ‘not enough time’ or a picture of me looking defeated and have accepted this as real so that I allow it to begin a process/pattern of thoughts. Instead of being here with breath, and stopping the first thought of failure, so I am free to walk my day without past ghosts as childhood memories, which do not serve me in anyway but only hinder or completely destroy my efforts to complete the task at hand in a way that is best for all, so I am unable to become/contribute to a process of the new human being, who is not lost in self-interest. In that, I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to not realize the fear of failure already exists in me, so the picture comes up automatically to remind me, I have already created the failure before even starting the task!
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to not realize I have listened to/participated in backchat/inner conversation in the mind, thinking, ‘ It’s too much, there is not enough time, too late to get it done, might as well give-up, same as usual , I don’t get it done, others do , how do they do it, I failed once again, I should back out, others do it better than me, I should quit, you can’t, I can’t, it’s useless, I fucked up, fuck it…’
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to not realize I have been participating in reactions/energy experiences of emotions, brought out by the initial thought, ‘I won’t get my daily blogging done’, of: anxiety, fear, feeling overwhelmed, anger, resentment, depression, hopelessness, helplessness, defeat, then when the decision to postpone/not do the task is made; relief.
I forgive myself for accepting and allowing myself to not realize I have been engaging/participating in a physical change in my body/behavior when following the ‘fear of failure’ character thought patterns of : tightening jaw, burdened with like a weight pulling me down/beatened down, slumped shoulders, frowning, knitted brows, back of head/occipital bone points headache, mid back ache/tension, chest tension, shallow breathing, sick/nausea in stomach.
I commit myself to, through writing, self-forgiveness and a self-corrective application, be aware of each breath and thus be aware of the first thought of failure/fear of failure as I now see/realize/understand how I have patterned myself as failure from childhood-my mind immediately goes to failure-instead of how to better myself, when faced with a point that needs my attention/growth, therefore, I can begin a process to pattern solutions each time I am faced with a point that needs to be perfected.
I commit myself to stop all participation in backchat/inner chatter that says I will fail and I should quit/I’m useless and a failure, as now see/realize/understand it is 100% based on the PAST/memories/pictures in my mind and not in fact reality here! I do not , nor does anyone else, have to use these past experiences (except in physical common sense, don’t touch a hot stove!) in what/who they are in this moment. I see that this patterned behavior is extreme, using polarity thinking of the mind, all or nothing, when it was just one point! I am not a failure over one simple point and I refuse to participate in that thought any longer, I see how I personalized that one point, from the thought ‘I won’t get my daily blogging done’ I went to ‘I failed/I’m a total loser’ instead of using my common sense and saying to myself, I just need to expand/learn this one point (ie. of time management) better/more.
I commit myself to stopping all participation in allowing myself to go into energy reactions that can harm me, I assist and support myself to find a solution to this point/moment, as I see/realize/understand that reacting to it will only compromise me and in this make it impossible for me to effectively direct myself. Thus, I breathe and take responsibility to find a practical solution as I can see how, from childhood, I have programmed/patterned my mind of thoughts, to immediately go to failure when faced with a challenging point–so to a negative energy experience as the fear of failure character faces anger/hopelessness—and because I am addicted to positive energy experiences-the feel good highs-I then go to give up/stop this painful task and get a cookie-positive energy experience, instead of changing me in that moment/growing/expanding me in that moment. I no longer accept this in myself and commit to stopping it.
I commit myself to, through writing, self-forgiveness and a self-corrective application, being aware of my physicality in each breath, and so to stop myself when I see I am allowing changes in my physical behavior as in tightening muscles/slouching/pain in my head and back/nausea in stomach, when faced with the fear of failure character as I now see/realize/understand facing one point does not define me in my totality! It is simply a part of me that needs to be re-assessed/developed/changed/expanded to effectively approach this point I am facing and so learn from others at the same time.
I commit to change myself from a mind/character to a physical living being. I begin this by re-defining fear of failure as; When/as I see fear of failure manifest, I instead utilize this point as a cross-reference where I have the ability to assist/support me to REVERSE the moment from the mirror of my Mind, that sees it as Failure, where I direct myself to utilize that reference of Failure as an actual opportunity for me to align me into and as specificity/detail to complete the task.