Unworthy of Success? Rewriting the Narrative That Blocks Your Potential

“I feel unworthy of success.”

The words carry weight beyond their brevity.

Feeling unworthy of success is a devastating, imprisoning belief.

When we carry this belief, we’ll stand in the way of our success. We’ll be our own worst enemy.

If, even through this, we’re able to reach our definition of success, we’ll blow it up because we don’t feel worthy of it.

It’s something I struggle with quite a bit.

Pre-prison, I checked all the “standard” metrics of success:

  • Professional
  • Financial
  • Materialistic

I had a double whammy: I wasn’t living the life I wanted to be living, and I didn’t believe I was worthy of my success.

So, I self-sabotaged in perhaps one of the grandest fashions, defrauding a tech giant and going to federal prison.

I lost what at the time seemed like everything (the wisdom of hindsight informs me this wasn’t true) and chose to rebuild from scratch.

As I’ve rebuilt and reinvented my life, I’ve been fortunate to meet my definitions of success along the way, and I’m grateful.

But as my life continues to expand, old wounds bubble to the surface.

Expansion triggers wounds; my personal edges, razor-sharp in my mind’s eye, glisten in the light of action and scream at me to stop,

“You had success, and you blew it up.”

“You had it all, and you threw it all away; who’s to say you won’t do it again?”

“You threw it away once; you showed no respect for it; you’re not worthy of achieving it again.”

I know I get in my own way; I see it — and I know there’s a ton I don’t see.

I work diligently on accepting this belief because to fight it is to breathe more life into it.

Acceptance is an ongoing journey; with each new level of life reached, the ghosts of the past reappear, sometimes in the forms I know, sometimes as something I don’t yet recognize.

As I navigate this and other beliefs, I ask questions, I think, I journal, and I write stuff like this.

One of the thoughts I had recently reframed information I’ve already connected within a new light; it’s given me another tool to dull the razor-sharp edges.

Would I (or anyone for that matter) ever look at a newborn baby and say,

“They’re unworthy of success.”

“They’re inadequate.”

I wouldn’t, and I can’t imagine anyone else would either.

I wasn’t (no one was) born unworthy, inadequate, or possessing any of the infinite imprisoning beliefs that exist.

Imprisoning beliefs are learned. They’re the products of a moment(s) in our lives and the meaning we attribute to the moment(s).

In simplest terms, X happened; that must mean I’m Y.

We then seek evidence to support the meaning, and the meaning morphs into a belief, and in time, the belief transforms into the identity we live/operate from.

Our actions, choices, and decisions flow from this belief and stifle our lives and our potential.

Our infinite potential lies on the other side of our imprisoning beliefs.