High achievers are the model students. They are every teacher’s favourite and everyone looks up to them. In the midst of this, when they are highlighted as the perfect idol, they are overlooked for the struggles and challenges they face. Amid their high achievements and remarkable character, their issues and problems are overlooked. This article looks at the scene psychology of a high achiever. The challenges they face and how they can be overcome.
The Fear of Loss
The fear of loss and being deprived of everything a high achiever has gained due to their hard work and charisma is a companion that never leaves them. When high-achievers are smart, have a record of consequent success and are ambitious, then why do they fear losing?
It is these very qualities that lead them to fear losing all the success they have achieved. It’s because they are ambitious and set themselves up for high standards and high-end goals. They have an inherent fear of failure because they want to maintain the track record of success that they are known for. This fear can manifest itself in the form of anxiety and stress. They might overwork themselves because they feel the constant desire to prove themselves worthy of their successful title.
Also Read: The Basics of Child Psychology
This constant pressure can also hurt mental well-being. Their constant desire to meet their own set of high standards might lead them to develop a habit of perfectionism. Any failure, whether small or big might lead to stress and impact personal perception of self and personal failure. This is why, one should learn to manage this fear. Failure is a part and parcel of life and it is important to accept that no one can escape. There are several strategies that you can use to manage this fear —
- Setting realistic goals that can be achieved and are not impossible.
- Not being afraid of failure and accepting it as a part of a learning experience and a great opportunity to improve oneself.
- Being compassionate to oneself and practising self-compassion regularly. This will help to develop resilience and one won’t feel despondent over a minor failure.
- Seek support if the stress and anxiety are getting overwhelming. Create a support system for yourself and seek the companionship of your friends and family.
High achievers are celebrated for their high ambitions and success. But this journey can be a lonely one. They might feel isolated in social circles because they might not share the same ambitions as their peers. Their peers might not have the same commitment as them. Their ambition for success and their goals might also isolate them in social circles.
This absence of strong social support can lead to loneliness and the effect of loneliness is detrimental to the health of mental well-being. The professional success light means nothing when the effects of loneliness set in. Here’s how high-achievers can prioritise social connections and avoid social isolation –
- Maintaining a work-life social balance is important. Make sure that there are boundaries between work and personal time. These firm boundaries will help you maintain social connections and not let your work interfere with your private life. It also helps to have time for relaxation and fun social activities.
- Joining networking groups with like-minded people who understand them.
- Practising mindfulness helps to keep your anxiety at bay and lets you achieve clarity in your life and goals.
The Constant Need to Excel
For high achievers, the need to excel is self-imposed. At the same time, people also have great expectations for them. High achievers, driven by an innate desire for success, often set exceptionally high standards for themselves. The pressure to excel can originate from personal ambitions, familial expectations, societal norms, or the pursuit of validation and recognition. This self-imposed pressure can be both a driving force and a formidable burden. Even in academia, a simple failure such as lower than usual grades is seen as abnormal. They are expected to secure top grades maintain excellent positions and get scholarships. They face the fear of not only themselves but also others.
The fear of disappointment becomes a constant in their life and this negatively impacts their mental health.
To deal with this people can –
- Have a Growth Mindset.
- Seeking support from people who understand them. This also includes creating a network with like-minded people.
- Seeing failure as an opportunity to learn and improve.
- Prioritizing self-care
All that glitter is not gold. We’ve heard about this proverb since childhood. Just like that behind that smile from success, comes the pressure and anxiety that all high-achievers face. It is important for us to not stereotype and ignore the challenges and obstacles faced by these individuals.