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Episode 152: The Shadow Side of Greatness: How to Manage the Fear of Success

We’re talking about managing the discomfort that comes with visibility and success and tools you can use to regulate your nervous system and embrace joy alongside vulnerability.

152: The Shadow Side of Greatness: How to Manage the Fear of Success

The more visible and successful you are, the more vulnerable you become. Taking the first step to becoming visible can be scary, and in episode 148, we spoke about managing the fear that comes with putting yourself out there.

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Show Notes

The more visible and successful you are, the more vulnerable you become.

Taking the first step to becoming visible can be scary, and in episode 148, we spoke about managing the fear that comes with putting yourself out there. Today we’re looking at the other side of the voice and vulnerability conversation – the discomfort we feel when we share our voices and get what we want.

Even when the outcome is better than expected, our minds still find ways to highlight how vulnerable we feel and ultimately to make us unhappy. Here's the good news: it’s normal to feel this way, and we can do things to support ourselves through these experiences.

In this episode, I’m sharing two voices with really valuable and relevant perspectives on this conversation and tools you can use to regulate your nervous system and embrace joy alongside vulnerability. Enjoy the episode!

Topics covered

  • Understanding why new fears can appear even after a win
  • Foreboding joy and why Brené Brown points to joy as our most vulnerable emotion
  • How we experience foreboding joy in our personal and professional lives
  • Gratitude as the best antidote to foreboding joy
  • Understanding Gay Hendricks’ Upper Limit Problem
  • Self-sabotage and our internal thermostat
  • Why doing this deeper work is especially important for us as coaches
  • Why it’s difficult for most of us to transition into our zones of genius

Resources mentioned

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TRANSCRIPT

 

Well, hello, my friend. Welcome to the Coach with Clarity podcast. My name is Lee Chaix McDonough, I'm your host. And I have really been looking forward to recording today's episode, because this is an extension of what we first started talking about a few weeks ago. So if you are a longtime listener, you probably heard Episode 148, which was all about voice and vulnerability, and how to manage the fear that emerges when you are putting yourself out there. And we talked a lot about why it feels so scary to use your voice, to become visible, and how we can manage those fears. So when I recorded that episode, I thought we were done. I'm just like, “Alright, that was good. Moving on.” And then I had a really interesting conversation with one of my long term clients, who got me thinking about voice and vulnerability in a completely different way. So this client had just successfully delivered a series of keynote talks. It was something she'd been working on for months, she was looking forward to it. And it went beautifully. It was one of those days where everything aligned, her talks went wonderfully. It was well received by her audiences, everything that could have gone right, did go right. So this is what we're working towards. Right? This could be described as a successful outcome. And yet, my client was noticing that, even though the talk went well, and she was getting all sorts of positive feedback, she was noticing inside herself, that it felt uncomfortable, and that she felt vulnerable. As she was receiving compliments from people who were listening to her speak, people who were saying things like, “I want to be like you. I want what you have. How did you do this?” So really putting her in the position of being a thought leader and a role model, she noticed her own response was one part pride and excitement, and one part dread. Even though everything went better than she could have expected, she was still feeling the discomfort from having put herself out there, and positioning herself as an expert and a thought leader. So as I coached her through this, I realized that this is the other side of the voice and vulnerability conversation that we did not have in Episode 148. 148 was about managing the fear that comes with using your voice. Today, we need to talk about managing the success that comes with using your voice. And what happens when we notice we're still feeling vulnerable and uncomfortable even when things are working out. So today, we're going to explore the fact that sometimes we can get exactly what we were working towards. Maybe it's even better than what we could have predicted. And yet our mind still finds ways to highlight how vulnerable we feel, and ultimately to make us unhappy. Here's the good news. If this has happened to you, you are human, you are normal. Welcome to the club. And the even better news is that there are things we can do to support ourselves and our nervous systems, when we experience that discomfort that comes from being visible, being vulnerable and having it go well.

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