8. Playing it Safe
This dynamic is particularly prevalent among women who are commonly taught to “be nice” and not make waves. So sometimes the glass ceiling can be self-imposed, negatively affecting their careers. It also affects men preparing for executive positions. Here, both men and women are limiting self-expression because they tend to hold themselves back in the fear of losing approval of others or that they’ll be leaving others behind. It’s based on the illusion that if they powerfully express themselves; they are going to be isolated. Many times people who could go well beyond their potential are afraid that if they really express themselves and do what they really want to do, their peers, their parents, or their family won’t love them anymore. They’ll be abandoned and they will feel lonely at the top. What they don’t realize is that there are other people at the top and that they will make new friends.
Regrettably, playing it safe because of fear of isolation promotes mediocrity. We see this all the time in business. In the corporate environment there are often politics involved. Knowing how to express oneself in a politically charged environment adds to the challenge, but is possible. Thus, when this dynamic is removed, one can say, “I am fully self-expressed without fearing loss of love of others.”Stay tuned for #9: Trying To Force an Outcome