Fear of Success


I awoke this morning with an underlying sense of anxiety. Success is beckoning, peace and prosperity and I have the heebie jeebies! I am experiencing the Upper Limit Problem. Things are going so very smoothly inside and outside. There is nowhere I want to get to, and nothing I wish to change. Life is stable and perfect! All I have to do is be in the stillness. After decades of searching for answers, for change, seeking and striving, I have landed firmly in the present. It takes a while to ease into it. Isn’t it ironic that the idea of success can invoke pain! It makes sense if you are not used to it.

My whole identity was built on being a ‘spiritual seeker’, and only now I can see that this was an excuse. It was an avoidance mechanism. I would do anything but simply just be, here and now in this very moment. THIS very moment right now. I am breathing in slowly, feeling my body. Learning to live here in this very moment, not in another ‘better’ moment I can envisage in the future.

What is there to fear? The poor ego feels its annihilation is near! The identity we have constructed can feel vital to our survival and so we cling on, and carry on the act over and over. In a way it is vital to our survival at certain points of our awakening.  The identity needs to be well developed, well rounded and strong prior to its dissolution in the greater whole of Awareness.

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I have witnessed people with a fragmented identity and a lot of unaddressed childhood damage trying prematurely to let go of their egos. When this happens mental health issues and overwhelming fear can result. Gradual paths are more suited to some people, and many are not ready for the direct paths such as Dzogchen. You have to have a big fat ego to lose one!

So back to now. I have never been this happy and stable before. Never been so comfy in my own skin. I have never earned this much money. Never been less worried and more at ease. I have had so many years of struggle that without the struggle I feel naked and alone at times, and on shaky ground.

So how to be with this? I am in the total unknown, Is there anything at all I can cling to? Infinity and Awareness and big doses of self compassion and self soothing of course! along with trust and love. This is on the menu today for me. There is a lot of repetition in these lists but it is necessary to remind myself over and over as the new ways replace old habits.

  • I have just lit a candle and placed it beside me to remind me of the still quiet centre within which exists whether I am having a drama or not
  • I’ve placed some potted flowering bulbs beside me to remind me of the beauty of nature which exists whether I am having a drama or not.
  • I am going to sit on my mindfulness cushion and listen to a guided meditation by Tara Brach 
  • Remembering to breath and from deep inside the body
  • A walk in the fresh air through the trees, again the beauty of nature is a constant no matter what is going on with the personal process.
  • Be watchful of the tendency towards self sabotage (I bit another nail down till it hurts last night).
  • Be aware of the gratitude I feel and write a thank you list
  • Allow the feelings to arise without judgement and know they will pass.
  • Feel compassion for myself and also give myself a hug
  • I am encouraging myself with positive self talk
  • Rest in the Ocean of Awareness and know that while I have waves, I am not the waves, I am the ocean!
  • Going to attend the weekly mindfulness class tonight
  • I’m going to have a little outdoor celebration of my success so far in the woods today. Might light a little fire and have a ritual.

Just had a mindfulness reminder on my phone ‘Are you taking care of this moment?’ !! Yes I am doing exactly that actually by writing here and being honest about my feelings 🙂

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