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Success 'fears'

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by samantha, Mar 21, 2014.

  1. samantha

    samantha Peer Supporter

    I don't know if anyone else has this issue, but... I just realized how terrifying success is to me. In my employment, I have always seen success and each time it is followed by an emotional or physical decline. In my current work, I have been amazed and gratified with the success of my efforts in the past 4 years. But it has also lead to more severe episodes- my back 'goes out' at least twice per year. I have followed up with doctors and have faithfully gone to physical therapy. Today, I was congratulating myself on 1/2 hour workout in the gym- nothing terribly strenuous- mostly treadmill on a low setting- when I felt a very familiar spasm in my back. I am 'afraid' that the success won't last. That it's fleeting. I know, in my conscious mind, that this is false, (since all my job successes have been lasting ones) but I'd like to convince my whole self that I can embrace success without fear. Any thoughts, suggestions? Thanks!
    Eric "Herbie" Watson and Forest like this.
  2. Ellen

    Ellen Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Samantha,

    Congratulations on your progress in treating your TMS! Yes, I too, am aware of having fear related to success. I'm reading Dr. James Alexander's book The Hidden Psychology of Pain, and he discusses how even hidden fears about positive events in our lives can trigger TMS. I think this includes fear about healing.

    Are you journaling? Doing one of the structured educational programs? I thinking writing out all your emotions and fears about success would be helpful if you aren't doing that already. Fear shrinks when we shine the light of awareness on it. Acknowledge it and accept it and it will dissipate.

    And welcome to the Forum! We are glad to have you join us. Please keep us posted on how you're doing.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson and Forest like this.
  3. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Samantha and welcome to the wiki. Congratulations on your insights. Success can bring all sorts of stresses, like increased responsibility, resentments, flareups of childhood triggers, or just change. Sounds like you've got a great starting point for your journaling.
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  4. LindaRK

    LindaRK Well known member

    Hi Samantha .... for me it's "waiting for the other shoe to drop". I've found journaling to be quite helpful, but also stopping the mindset from going towards the negative. I've had anxiety for decades, so I've had a bit of experience in dealing with stopping the negativity, but it does take work.
    Last edited: Mar 22, 2014
    Eric "Herbie" Watson and Forest like this.
  5. JohnS

    JohnS New Member

  6. JohnS

    JohnS New Member

    hello Samantha-- from what I know of this issue, there may be some underlying beliefs about your "not deserving" success or believing that "someone will take it away," as in early childhood experiences. these repressed feelings are made up of negative energy which needs to be
    released. through meditation you can learn to recognize them without getting caught up in them. i.e. allow them to float by like clouds.
    once you're ready, you can learn to "dive into" the emotions, feel the burn, and experience yourself separate from that energy!
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  7. samantha

    samantha Peer Supporter

    Thanks for all your responses. I have been journaling everyday. I'm relieved that the fear is not unique to me. I'm also reading Dr. Brady's book, 'Pain Free for Life' and beginning each day with meditation. One of you said, "it's waiting for the other shoe to drop"- that felt very familiar to me. Although I have some pain, I'm seeing more hope with this program than anything else I've done in the last 8 years.
    LindaRK likes this.
  8. Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021)

    Walt Oleksy (RIP 2021) Beloved Grand Eagle

    Samantha, JohnS's thoughts are very interesting, about maybe childhood successes were felt undeserved
    or there was the fear of success being taken away. Maybe think on that a little in journaling and see if
    you can recall anything of that nature.

    I think, also, that workers today are in constant fear that their success won't last.
    In Hollywood they say an actor is only as successful as their last movie, but lots of them have
    survived turkeys. Most new movies are more gobble-gobble than anything.

    I'm a full time freelance writer and few occupations are as stressful or reward so little for success.
    Yet, I've survived in it for 40 years and am glad I became self-employed. It has its benefits.

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