Overcoming Fears

It’s weird…I’m at a point in my life that I really thought I’d be bouncing off of the walls with excitement. I’m signing a lease to a new place with Sunshine on Saturday, I’m preparing to start a new career somewhere, and I’m inching closer to being 40 years old. There is just so much going on, it should be easy to fall prey to being overly excited and putting the cart before the horse.

My problem is that I’m not even hitching the cart up at the moment.

Y’see, I’m actually pulling back a bit leading up to everything because of fear and nervousness. It’s no secret that I’ve always had self-confidence issues, and I actually thought that I was past them as I entered my 40th year. I mean, I’m engaged to the most amazing girl in the world and life seems to be coming together for me.

The reality of the situation is that I’m afraid of failure. I’m afraid of rejection. I’m afraid of being told I’m simply not good enough. So when I found out that there were two voicemail messages for me yesterday from two job prospects, I actually got nervous instead of excited. I sat back and thought about (1) maybe these jobs weren’t good enough for me to take, (2) I actually have to interview for these and I’m not ready, and (3) I guess I should go for it because I can’t get anything better.

It’s silly. I should have been stoked to be contacted as it’s been a month without as much as a nibble. Instead, I got butterflies in my stomach about the realities of actually having to call these people back and move forward with the entire process.

Sunshine told me last night how much she believes in me, but if I don’t believe in myself that others will notice…which is NOT good for a job interview. She’s absolutely right (she usually is when giving me a pep talk).

The job search can be very depressing. I see a ton of jobs that I would love to have…jobs I think I could do well in if I only had a bit more experience in certain areas…and I get deflated thinking that somehow my professional life has passed me by because I don’t have required skills. But then the flipside of the search is that it appears most of the remaining jobs are just minimum wage positions or sales positions requiring cold calling “for competitive compensation”. That’s just not me and I can’t imagine anybody doing that.

What’s left are jobs that not only I want, but (seemingly) everybody else wants, too. Thus, there is always somebody more qualified out there for the jobs that are best for me.

Of course, this is just my lack of self confidence rising to the surface. My interpretation of the job search is probably not nearly the reality of the situation (heck…my ex-wife, who is an HR Generalist, has offered to hook me up with a contact or two via LinkedIn because she believes in me and my abilities), so why do I have this nagging fear of things?

So today I need to walk into the placement agency that wants me for a pretty decent-paying job (very similar to what I’m making now) that looks to be pretty challenging professionally and would pretty good on a resume. Once done there, I need to call back a potential employer about a position that may or may not be a simple call-centre position (sometimes it’s difficult to tell from the job descriptions online), but I need to set that concern aside and call them because it may be my dream job…I won’t know if I don’t call.

I need to kick my own ass and show the world that I’m ready for anything. Of course, what I want to do and what I will do are two different things. Fingers crossed, I’ll get this done.

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17 thoughts on “Overcoming Fears

  1. You know what’s worse than trying and failing?

    Never trying at all.

    At least if you put yourself out there and take a risk, you’re opening yourself up to possibilities…even if you don’t succeed.

    If you allow fear to control you, you hold yourself back and then you’re GUARANTEED failure.

    Everyone around you — including your ex wife — knows what you’re capable of. It’s time you started to believe all of us and believe in yourself, too.

  2. Amen to what Sunshine said. And honestly, you are not alone in this fear and frustration on the job hunt…I think everyone gets insecure and fearful when it comes to finding a new job, landing the interview, the whole nine yards. So cut yourself some slack there, and don’t beat yourself up anymore…just face the fear and go for it. Kick your own ass, as you say. You totally have the capabilities, the personality and the will to do whatever you set your mind to.

  3. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. You and Sunshine have already proven you are both ready for adventure, change, and everything/anything the world throws at you.

    I think many of us suffer from impostor syndrome at times but realize that those who have confidence in you have that confidence for a reason.

    When you are an 80 year old man you do not want to look back at your life and think “if only…”.

    Cheers,
    Vivi

  4. Dude. I could have written this same post. I’ve had some great interviews. I’ve even had some great second interviews. But I think I am not exactly sold on my “skills” either… even though some part of me knows that I’m worth it and knows that I can learn anything. Sadly, the interviewer can see right through my facade and into my insecurity.

    Sending you loads of positivity and confidence as you take these opportunities by the horns. Besides, if anything it’s great experience learning how to interview and what potential choices you have! Go CBG GO!

  5. my dad always said you don’t have a chance to win if you don’t play. I think he was talking about lotto 649, but it doesn’t matter. I’ve learned a lot about life in the past 8 weeks (since my dad passed suddenly and tragically) and you have to live life now. Plain and simple. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Kick thyself in the ass, and go forth. You went to Mt.A for crying out loud. We aren’t #1 for nothing. 🙂

    1. Y’know, I tell that to Sunshine all the time. She jokes about never winning the lottery. I tell her she doesn’t buy any tickets. She says she’ll never win. I tell her she’ll never win if she doesn’t play.

      Consider my ass kicked.

  6. I wish you the best of luck in the upcoming weeks AND with your move, new job and new life. It IS scary and those feeling SUCK!!!!

    Seems I’ve been battling my own fears and weaknesses and the only thing I can tell you that gets me through is continually placing positive things and people right in front of me at all times. No bad self talk (maybe when you start to feel these things, smack yourself to stop??? kidding!!) and just keep moving forward.

    Cheering for you!!!

  7. If you try and don’t get the job you are still ahead of not trying at all because you got the experience of that interview, which could give you some insights into what to do or not do the next time.

    I nominated you for the versatile blogger award.

  8. Dated a recruiter (many) years ago who taught me to improve my (then horrid) interviewing skills, by pursuing every possible opportunity to interview for any job I might ever (*or never) want. Though a couple months was suggested, I did this nearly a year. Worked a treat, and boosted my job-hunting confidence — both of which dramatically improved the quality of positions offered. Certainly not an immediate solution, but maybe a viable near-future investment for your far-future endeavors? Good luck!

  9. I lived my whole life being afraid, until recently and the good new is:

    You don’t have to keep kicking yourself in the butt for the rest of your life — it will just hurt your foot and give you a black & blue butt. Plus it does nothing for the self-esteem.

    In my life, I thought that if I could control things and have a degree of certainty then I would be OK. I could control the outcome and I wouldn’t look stupid, or whatever story my mind made up.

    Then I got thrown into the world of divorce 3 years ago, and I was terrified of being alone. It wasn’t about spending time on my own, it was about not having a partner. I was also concerned about where I would live and how I would make it financially on my own. I was scared of the unknown, I wanted certainty.

    Then I learned this new technique, I call it Emotional Hot Button Removal. I practised and practised the techniques and eventually my fears disappeared. You see the emotional energy of fear is stored in our body and I found out how to release it.

    Now I live the life of my dreams. I have created a virtual business, working from Belize for a year and I am off to work from Mexico next. I haven’t felt any fear in the last 2 years.

    Jacque
    http://www.yourdivinedivorce.com

    (I know my website is targeted for divorce — divorcing your fears that is!)

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