Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fear of Disappointment: How to Break Out

Does fear of disappointment block your enthusiasm? Does it keep you from daring to dream? Or allowing people to share your excited anticipation of a new adventure?

Active, happy desire (AHD) will motivate you more strongly than any should's or ought-to's you can muster up. What does active, happy desire feel like? It's that "Oh yes! That! Gimme some of that!" feeling. It fills you with exuberance and a strong tendency to roll up you sleeves and get to work moving toward what you want or finding a way to attract it to you. You can feel the fizz of energy generating. When that energy radiates out into the universe the we often call the results miracles.

What does happy desire look like? Have you ever seen someone light up with a new idea or possibility? It's visible, discernible. In my coaching work it's the look that tells me we've had a breakout.

Fear of happily experiencing desire is really common. Some of the hidden beliefs that fuel the fear run along lines like this:
  • If I get excited and it doesn't work out, I'll feel like a fool.
  • If I don't let myself want it too much, it won't hurt so much if I don't get it.
  • If I get my hopes up, I'll be too disappointed.
Could anything be more self-defeating? Talk about driving with one foot on the brake, 4 flat tires, and out of gas. We do it to protect ourselves but it does not work because:
  • Every moment of happiness you squelch is a moment of happiness you will never experience.
  • Disappointment isn't so bad. It comes and goes. Do not add shame and embarrassment for having dared to dream. That is another painful, doomed strategy.
  • Denying your desire does not avoid disappointment; it makes it more likely.
  • Hiding your desire blocks the eager support of those who wish you well and may want to help you.
  • Every time you conjure up that idea about the disappointment you want to avoid, you feel it. Like the poor coward who dies a thousand deaths, you fill your life with small doses of disappointment.
The common antidote only adds brake fluid to the brakes. If  your odds of success are uncertain, trying to believe you will succeed doesn't work too well. Often, the truth is that you don't know. The good news is that you do not need to know the outcome in order to allow AHD to move you down the path. You just have to be open to new information and correct your course as it becomes available. You do not have to crush your eagerness. Just add risk assessment into the equation when you make choices about what actions you want to take or pass up.

If you remain open to learning more as you allow your desire to mark your path you will be flexible. Some things will become less desirable as you discover more about them. Other possibilities will attract you even more strongly.

Only one caution comes to mind: be discerning about what you share with whom. Pay attention to which people will nurture your dreams and who may shoot them down.

The next time you light up with active, happy desire let it be! Don't spin it. Don't squelch it. Let it grow! Let it lead you to new adventures -- happily.

Please leave a comment and share your adventures so we can cheer you on. Or tell us your your blocks we can help you break out from them.

Resource: for more info about how desire works as an inner sense of direction read "Emotional Options." For book details or to order visit,