Women Who Run With The Wolves
Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype
by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Ph.D.
"Fear of failure" is one of those catch-phrases that does not really describe what a woman truly fears. Usually a single fear has three parts; one part being a residue from the past (this often being a source of shame), one part being a lack of certainty in the present, and one part being a fear of poor outcome or negative consequences in the future.
Regarding the creative life, one of the most common fears is not precisely a fear of failure, but rather a fear to test the mettle. The thinking goes something like this . . . if you fail, you can pick yourself back up and begin anew; you have infinite chances ahead of you. But, what if you succeed, but in the mediocre range? What if no matter how hard you try, you achieve, yes, but not at the level you wanted to? That is the far more bedeviling issue for those who create. And there are many, many others. That is why the creative life is a deep and complicated path all its own. Yet, even all this complexity should not keep us from it, for the creative life lies right over the heart of the wild nature. Despite worst fears, there is profound nurturance from the instinctive nature.