Status Anxiety: What it is and how to let that shit go
"Hi, my name is Drew and I used to suffer from status anxiety." Can you relate?
My own status anxiety began from my fear of never filling the shoes of my father and grandmother. It stopped me from pursuing my passions and taking risks. I thought that making money and having a fancy title would justify my worth which would, in the end, give me everything I ever wanted in this world. Boy was I wrong. What it gave me was depression and confusion about why I wasn't happier. How could someone who seems to have it all still feel unfulfilled and unhappy?
Status anxiety is when you are constantly worried and anxious about your standing in the world, you are always looking for a way to climb the social ladder, and you believe that your worth is based on your title and achievements.
Therefore, in your mind, the higher you climb, the more worthy and respected you think you become. (Warning: LIES!)
When you rely on external improvements (ie. promotions, more pay, more responsibilities) to bring you happiness and worth, you stop looking for the joy within yourself, and please hear me when I say that that is no way to live your life!
When you come from a family that has a laundry list of accomplishments, it can add yet another layer of difficulty to status anxiety because it makes it especially tough to step out on your own and face the risk of failure. This extreme fear of failure inhibits your growth - big time.
You deserve to go through life without feeling like you have to prove anything to anyone. You deserve the peace that comes from knowing that who you are and where you are is enough.
Now I’ll be honest - living from that place isn’t easy when you’ve spent a whole lot of your life striving to be more, do more, earn more, offer more. But I’m not about to let you slip away without handing you some go-to ways that you can tackle those moments of status anxiety.
TIPS TO CONQUER YOUR FEAR OF FEELING ‘LESS THAN’:
Know that you are worthy regardless of your work title, income and social following. Your title, income and social following don't define who you are so they shouldn't determine your worth.
Recognize where your status anxiety stems from. When you were a child, how did you grow up? What experiences created the fear you experience now?
Write a new definition of success and prosperity. What do these words mean to you? Hint: not what society defines them as!
Redefine your life based on what's important to you. What is your purpose? What truly brings you joy? Get to understand and acknowledge your Core Values (I will be adding a free worksheet on this in my Resources tab soon).
Create More. Compare Less. Comparison is the thief of joy. FOR REAL tho. The more you compare the less you feel whole. Take less time to compare and more time to create!