Fear Disguised as Humility

September 28, 2017

Recently I was chatting with a mentor of mine, and I was sharing how I feel extremely grateful for the opportunities in my life right now, yet unworthy at the same time. His comments back to me were quite sharp and abrupt, but they managed to find a lodging place in my mind and heart. 

Harsh Truth

He said, “Do you believe in yourself?! Have you been taking actions to accomplish your goals, your passions? Are you working your (insert word of choice here) off to achieve these things that are important to you?”

I answered, Yes, YES and YES!

He went on to say, “Then, stop saying you’re not worthy. People don’t want to hear that nor do they believe you. That’s NOT humility! That’s deceiving you and attempting to deceive others. It doesn’t work! Tara, they see right through it!”

The more I thought about his statement, the more I realized it to be true. 


Might this be fear? Of what am I afraid? 

Failure to achieve my mission? 

Might I worry others won’t think I’m trying hard enough? 

Am I comparing my worth to those around? 

Do I not recognize T. Roosevelt’s words as true?

“Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Is this approach actually fear disguised as humility?

Am I  attempting to convince others that I’m undeserving or, at best, using an unsuccessful approach to show them my vulnerability?

Do I really think overtly pointing out the “obvious” of not being good enough will cause others to say, “Aww…but you are deserving.” Or, on the flip side, might they say, “Duh, you aren’t; who said you were? What the heck are you doing?”

Fear of proving true the comments that haunt me from my childhood?

Is it simply fear of failure?

Or, fear of critics?

Lead Astray?

Do I model this disillusion for those I lead? Did I think this was a part of servant-leadership?

Are students taking this approach, as well?

Is this why others fall into this paralyzed mindset believing they can’t attain their dreams? 

Gah…punch to the gut.


Humility is NOT downplaying your efforts.

Humility is NOT pretending you are something you’re not.

Humility is NOT denying your God-given talents.

Humility is being REAL.

Humility is sharing the obstacles you’ve managed to overcome and being grateful for the blessings in your life.

Humility is NOT FEAR!


If you work hard to achieve your aspirations, you earn them. Period. 

Even if surprise opportunities present themselves to you, you ARE deserving. OWN it!

It’s a special gift JUST for YOU! Someone believed YOU could do it; that’s why they chose you. Don’t let them down. ROCK the heck out of it!

(Side Note: Sometimes we need others to believe in us so we can see what we are capable of accomplishing.)

Being grateful is humble. Allowing fear to deceive you and those around you is NOT.

Now GO…

Know your purpose and CRUSH your goals!

Do it with humility? Yes. 


Be fearless and confident! 

YOU are the ONE.

OWN your talents and use them to fulfill your purpose!

Now, foster this in those you lead.

*Special thanks to my “tough-love” mentor; I value your feedback. It’s always in my best interest.

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  • Reply Nicole Corn September 28, 2017 at 2:44 pm

    You go girl!

    • Reply Tara M Martin September 28, 2017 at 3:28 pm

      Thanks, Nicole. 🙂

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