“People have a hard time letting go of their suffering.
Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar.”
~ Thich Nhat Hanh
What this quote means to entrepreneurs:
The familiar, no matter how painful it may be, can be seductively magnetic. This simple psychological fact is behind so much human pain: women who stay with abusive men (been there, done that), employees staying at a job that sucks at their soul (been there and done that, too), entrepreneurs who keep struggling at making their business work rather than venture out and try something new that may take them to the next level (I’m sure all of us have been there and done that!).
Thich Nhat Hanh is so right. Fear of the unknown can be so paralyzing! But if you can feel the fear and do what you need to do anyway, then you will overcome pretty much any odds.
This past weekend at a conference called Limitless Women, I met so many successful women whose stories included the “dark night of the soul” moments where they faced their fear and leaped into the void … only to find that the void was filled with love, support, and eventual abundance.
Successful women entrepreneurs … those valiant ladies we all look up to … weren’t born successful. Many, if not most or even all, traveled a gauntlet of obstacles to reach their success. Some have had to use food stamps, others have had to leave abusive relationships, and many (probably more than we realize) have had more than one failed business.
This is just a part of life. So, if you are suffering where you are, ask yourself if you are choosing to stay there. If the answer is “yes” … it is time to let that suffering go and leap faithfully into your future.
Now It’s Your Turn:
Do you agree with my interpretation of today’s quote? Why or why not? What are your thoughts on fear and how it can hold you back? Please share your thoughts, experiences, and sage wisdom in a comment below.