Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Fear of Success

There are things on my weekly training to-do list that I fear.

Sometimes, that fear is based on reality, as anything requiring Zachary to "Do Nothing" is iffy at best. I don't call him "Ten Seconds" Zachary for nothing!

Sometimes, that fear is based on past realities, which I know no longer hold true but that I still foolishly cling to. For example, there was a time when Beau was nearly impossible to shape. He's much better now, and I know that, yet that old twinge of uncertainty still remains - will he be better this time?

I don't really see Fear of Failure during training as my goals are oriented around keeping my boys busy and learning, and it's almost impossible to fail at that! I probably have a Fear of Failure when it comes to competing (the few times I've done so) and that no doubt plays into my ring nerves, but that's a post for another day.

But none of those explain the Odd Occurrance of last night.

Nope, to figure that one out required a bit of googling until I hit on this strange beast: Fear of Success.


According to eHow.com symptoms include:
  1. Procrastination
  2. Talk ideas to death instead of doing them
  3. Never quite finish a project
  4. Read every book on the topic but do not implement or execute the required actions
  5. You have already succeeded once, you are an expert, you know what to do, how to do it and you have excelled in the (near or far) past. Still you hesitate to put in the next set of actions.
... or from Suite 101

  1. "Partying" the night before the big presentation
  2. Procastination
  3. All talk, no action
  4. Negative, pessimistic thoughts and behaviors
Keeping that in mind, we go back to last night...

There I was, standing in the middle of the Kitchen, staring at the Weekly Worksheet for this week, when my eyes settled on Training Levels 4 - Watch: 10', 30 seconds.


I believe it has been on the list for at least a month, and I have yet to do anything at all with it. Right above that gem was the 2 minute Training Levels 4 - Sit-Stay, another winner, as Zachary remains at 30 seconds with no signs of budging, unless slumping to a down counts. I believe that one has been on and off the list since March.

Yes, that March, now six months past.


Feeling in a list-clearing mood, I thought I'd give ye ol' Watch a try to see just how bad it was. First up: Beau. I didn't really expect any problems there, and I didn't get any. He passed without issue, and I kicked myself for not having set up the camera.

Next up: "Ten Seconds" Zachary. Being a glutton for punishment, I put him in a sit stay, walked 10' away, then turned and looked at him...

... and he looked at me...
... and he looked at me...
... and he looked at me.

Darned if Snug Bug didn't sit there, practically unblinking, for the entire 30 seconds. It was one of the easiest passes I've had, for a skill we haven't touched since he labored through the previous level. Now I was really p*ssed for not having set up the camera!

But wait, there's more.

While I was working with Beau, I decided to give Training Levels Four - Finish a try. (I know, it's not on this weeks list, but hubby has a Mound O' Stuff in our regular "classroom" so I had to improvise.)

Training Level Four - Finish is supposed to be a swing finish (to the left) on voice cues only. I realize that now, because I just looked it up. However, last night I was thinking it was a finish to the right (behind my back).

Beau knows a right finish using a hand signal, but I've never done it on just a vocal cue. Ever. But last night, for grins and giggles, I put him in front of me and said "Finish".

Darned if the Big Dog didn't trot right around me, sit right beside me, and look up at me adoringly.

Had Level Four Finish been a right finish, I could have passed him on the spot.

So, what does this all mean?

  1. Procrastination: This stuff should have been taught, tested, and crossed off months ago but I just didn't do it
  2. All [lists], no action: How long have these things been sitting on my Weekly Worksheets, awaiting attention???
  3. Never quite finish (pardon the pun): Really, Level Four should have been signed, sealed, and delivered back in June, but instead I've started on Level Five
  4. Negative, pessimistic thoughts and behaviors: I didn't do it because I just knew they would fail.

Quick, someone distract me with a new Training Challenge before I run off to create more lists to help me figure out how to stop making lists and just get down to training!!!

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