Striving For Success

Who are you meant to be?‚Äč

My Blog


Avoidant Leader

Posted on January 26, 2016 at 4:29 PM Comments comments (12)
Have you ever experienced the frustration of trying to get things done with a leader who avoids making decisions and getting involved? Or a leader who regularly tolerates poor performance?

Indecisive or, as we like to call them, Avoidant Leaders are focused on productivity and the needs of the business. They are self-directed, highly functional and independent. They know what they want to achieve and do extremely well when working on their own. They can be in a senior role in an organization or are a successful entrepreneur.

Yet with all their success, the Avoidant Leader tends to abdicate authority to others and avoids making decisions.

They don’t get involved with their employees unless they have to and will work behind a closed door. They may present an attitude that says “I am so busy, don’t bother me” or meet employee requests with annoyance in their voice. They don’t realize that their failure to address underperformance issues alienates high performers while their fear of making wrong decisions impedes those who are dependent on their leadership.

So how do you survive this dysfunctional leadership style? Here are 3 helpful tips:

Don’t react to their behaviour. Strong emotional reactions will cause Avoidant Leaders to withdraw further so respond, don’t react.
Make the Cost of Avoidance clear. Step into his shoes and try to understand what he or she really cares about. That way you can show that what he wants to accomplish is at risk.
Ask for what you need. Ask for what you need and avoid harshly detailing what's wrong with them in doing so.

This post was co-written by Anne Dranitsaris, Ph. D. & 

What are you afraid of?

Posted on September 23, 2014 at 8:14 PM Comments comments (26)

Our behavior changes when our innate fear is
being triggered, whether we are aware of it or
not. Fear pushes us into the emotional part of our
brain, leaving us at the mercy of our impulses and
unconscious habits of mind that have been hard‐
wired into our brain through our conditioning
and experiences.

The following are the eight distinct psychological
fears as well as the key impact on your behavior.
By understanding the motivation and need
attached to the fear, we can stop acting out of the

‐ Innate Need: To Be In Control
~ Associated Fear: Feeling Helpless or Powerless

‐ Innate Need: To Be Knowledgeable
~ Associated Fear: Being Inferior

‐ Innate Need: To Be Recognized
~ Associated Fear: Shame

‐ Innate Need: To Be Perceptive
~ Associated Fear: Disconnection

‐ Innate Need: To Be Connected
~ Associated Fear: Abandonment

‐ Innate Need: To Be Creative
~ Associated Fear: Assimilation

‐ Innate Need: To Be Spontaneous
~ Associated Fear: Loss of Freedom

‐ Innate Need: To Be Secure
~ Associated Fear: The Unknown

Learn more about your needs so you can overcome your fear. 


Posted on August 31, 2014 at 9:48 PM Comments comments (25)


The truth is that most of us just don’t understand
our own needs, fears, and habits of mind very
well, so we sabotage ourselves by living life at
less than full throttle. We let our fear define and
decide what experiences we will have and what
we will say, because we are afraid of stirring up
emotions in others or ourselves. Over time, we
may accept this compromise as living, when,
unknown to us, all we are really doing is living
life on autopilot and trying not to rock the boat.

Our innate fears are varied. They are based on
our strongest motivations (striving energies) and
their associated psychological needs. We are
conditioned to judge our fears rather than to
examine them and ask ourselves the purpose of
the feeling. Only through understanding the
motivation and need attached to the fear, can we
stop acting out of the fear.

Fear Part 2

Posted on August 23, 2014 at 1:30 AM Comments comments (12)
But I Should Not Be Afraid


Most of the advice that you will receive about our
fears is how to control, deny, rationalize or
overcome them. The reality is that fear occurs
naturally, out of our conscious control. It is the
body’s warning system that there is a threat.

Often our fears are associated with past
experiences as our negative emotional memories
are stored in the brain. We tend to fear those
things that we have experienced that have caused
us pain and suffering in the past. We can tell
ourselves that we don’t feel things but the reality
is that we have pushed it so far out of our
awareness that we blindly keep going forward
despite being warned to the contrary.

We mistakenly believe our fear is not going to
return because we tell ourselves we should not be
afraid. We call ourselves names, tell ourselves we
are stupid for feeling afraid, all to no avail. We
need to have the experience of fear and then
figure out why we feel afraid. For example, if I
most fear embarrassment, I may reflect on what
the consequences are for feeling this. 
Why I am unable to tolerate the emotion? 
How do I live in my experience instead of fearing what I might