We all have a fear of not being accepted at times. It is human nature. In Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs he states it as being one of the primary motivators for humans. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow’s_hierarchy_of_needs One of the major influences in all of our lives is to “belong”. It is just human nature to want to belong to a group a community. However, to be succesful and to accomplish things you want to accomplish, you have to fight this fear and step out and take risks and not fear criticism, this includes going against the group and doing things that you think are right or you think is a better way.
I have spent a lot of time reading some of the business classics such as “Think and Grow Rich.” Every time I read this book, I take a new nugget of wisdom from it. It has been around for many many years on the Top reads list for a reason.
Here is what Napoleon Hill http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Napoleon_Hill the author of Think and Grow Rich says that the fear of criticism will do to us:
SELF-CONSCIOUSNESS: This is when we question every move we make. We are afraid to speak up because we are afraid of what people might say in response to what we say or what we do.
LACK OF POISE: When you are questioning every word that comes out of your mouth because of your self-consciousness, you will not speak with confidence or passion, and your presence will not be very appealing and you will not be very credible.
INFERIORITY COMPLEX: When we fear criticism we sometimes over compensate by going the other way. Which includes not using words that we would normally use. Not acting like we normally act. To overcome your own insecurities you try to be something you are not, which in turn impacts your fear of criticism even more, because your are not being yourself.
EXTRAVAGANCE: I have seen people do things that they wouldn’t never do, never say, never buy, never be involved in, all in an effort to keep up with the Jones’. Be yourself and live within your means, your abilities, your skills, do what you want to do, who cares about others. Who knows maybe they are even living a life that isn’t really who they are.
LACK OF INITIATIVE: If you are over conscious and worried about what you say and do, and how you look and sound. Over time you draw back. You don’t get involved. You don’t take risks. You become a hermit and don’t do things at all. It really is a disease and can eat at you where you wont attempt anything, which means you definitely wont accomplish anything.
Are you fearful of criticism? Lets be honest, I do at times. I have to be aware of it and manage it. Take a look at the above items, is your fear of criticism causing any of these things in your life to occur? What can you do today to change this? I challenge you to make those changes, I know I am. We have to change to have a better future if this is what you desire.
To your success and your future.