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Fear of Failurebuttonpdficon


When you were a baby you were hardly aware of your ego. You existed, but you didn’t really know you existed.

You couldn't refer to failure as YOU failing. It was just A failed attempt.

You didn’t take it personally. You didn’t know you were a “person” yet. You didn’t really know what you were!

It didn't matter that you failed to walk and talk a hundred times before you were effective. You never stopped and thought about it.

It didn't even matter that your failures were the source of your family’s laughter and pleasure. In fact you actually enjoyed the attention sometimes (and when you figured out how to get that attention sometimes you even done it on purpose!)

You were pretty innocent. You were close to your soul then. And although you had the same ego you have today, your awareness of it was undeveloped.

You were like an animal in that way - animals have very little ego-awareness or  self-consciousness and feel less embarrassment etc than us - that's why you see those “funny” videos of animals chasing man-made riddles like a ball on a piece of string - they are not egotistical enough to care about how “silly” they look. And why the little old rich lady can dress her poodle in a hideous red tartan dog jacket and the poodle carries on as if nothing in the world has ever changed.

As we get older we begin to notice ourselves more.

The mirror doesn't exist from 0-14 for most humans, but after teenage hits, suddenly you notice yourself in it. And others notice you. And the self-conscious hyper-sensitive side of the ego is born. You suddenly exist to the world! And that’s scary.

Now we have a situation.

If you have confidence instilled in you from somewhere, you still don't care how many times you fail or fall! You still think like your little baby-self in regards to self-consciousness.  You do have an ego to refer to but you just don't care when people laugh innocently at your mishaps, or even when people tell you to stop because you’re “no good at it”.

Its water off a duck’s back.

Sometimes that inner confidence expresses itself in a slightly twisted way as arrogance or narcissism but whatever the case may be, at least you get through without a fear of failure for the time being. You will have to deal with the arrogance later!

OR you become so engrossed in yourself that fear of failure begins to stifle your steps.

You freeze whenever a desire challenges you to behave in a way that many lead to failed attempts i.e. the baby trying to walk becomes the adult trying to do Salsa dancing and fears looking like they have two left feet! You freeze simply because others may get to know what you’re doing and laugh at you, or consider you inadequate in some way. But remember as your baby-self you’ve clearly proved that you can learn things despite failing incessantly whilst being the source of hapless comedy to others!

Now imagine yourself back as a baby again. Imagine you cared that much.

Imagine that you were that conscious of yourself that when an adult laughed at your babbling speech and even copied it back to you, you thought, 'Right! Well I shan't be doing that again if you’re going to mock me!'

Or when your sibling pushed you off the sofa you were gripping onto, trying to walk, you thought, 'That was mean! I'm only 8 months old, how dare you. I am not walking whilst he's around!'

Imagine how slow your progress would be.

But you didn’t do that did you? You cried a bit when your bottom hit the floor (and adults laughed whilst picking you up) but you tried again and again!

The mentality of an adult who lives with a fear of failure is that they stop themselves from growing because of what they think failure means - both to themselves and others.

They think they should be sheltered from laughter and criticism while they try. The reality is the world they are about to grow up in is not like that. The reality is that it is only their ego that cares about their failed attempts. Others pay little but a passing interest in these moments.  

And the soul inside doesn't care at all!

Look at the baby, it’s close to its soul, it has its objectives and it will do everything to achieve them – milk, food, sleep, change nappy, play, walk, talk – whatever! It always wins. Baby always wins.

It is the ego that develops the crushing pain, dejection, rejection, shyness, self-abuse and ultimate self-destruction that hides the successful experience of life. It is not your soul. Your soul is fine!

Go back to innocence. Go back to fearlessness. Look at it all very simply again. Just like when you first learnt to walk. Let people laugh. Let them talk. Let them even try and stop you! But if your desire is wholesome, legal, safe and fairly sane - then absolutely go for it!

If you continue with a fear of failure in any area of your life remember that little baby you once were, and remember how brave you used to be…

“If success is at the top of a ladder, failures are the rungs that will get you there” – Neil Patel

Taken from the book “The Soul of Chi Kri Volume 1: Anger is Blocked Love