Are All Your Great Ideas Just a Cover for Your Fear? - Christine Kane

Break free of the energy traps that are holding you back

Paula was a nurse practitioner.  She paid for the courses. She got her certifications. She worked for a year at this.

Then she decided it wasn’t for her.  She knew that being a healer was her calling. So she got her massage therapy certification.

Within the span of a year, that wasn’t quite right either.

What came next?

Chiropractor training!

Certification? Check!  Business started? Check!  Business abandoned? Of course.

Last I heard she was a struggling realtor in Florida.

That’s four businesses. Four certs. Zero  dollars profit. But the worst part is that she feels down on herself.

Sound familiar?

If you can relate with this on some level,  you’re not crazy. You’re not a loser. And no, you shouldn’t take the usual advice you’ve gotten all your life and just “Grow up and get serious!”

What’s happening here is that you’re caught in what I call an Energy Trap.

Energy traps are well-worn patterns that have infused into your system over the course of your life through all of its triggers and dramas.

The patterns become a default. You just “go there.”  They feel like who you are!

So when you start a business… you tend to make decisions from these unconscious places, rather than unraveling and de-fusing the pattern itself so you can find new ways of behaving. This unconscious behavior builds limiting walls around the success you can actually reach.

In my Defying Gravity” free video series, this particular pattern that we see in Paula is what’s known as the Flip-Flop Trap.  And it was the one pattern the participants most identified with.

Of course it is!  Part of being an entrepreneur is getting ideas!

But there’s a problem when you can’t follow through.

See if any of these symptoms sound like you:

  • You have more than one business and/or certification. You have several businesses and you move from one thing to the next.

  • You’re always acting on many different ideas. No sooner does one idea get to the point where you’re starting to make traction, you self-sabotage and move onto the next idea.

  • Secretly, you feel shame. This shame is terrifying and deeply saddening. And it’s so hard for you to share.

On the surface, the obvious advice is that you should “Focus already!” Or “Grow up!”

And you’ve probably tried just that. But it rarely works for long. It only makes for more shame, and then you’re caught in the trap once again.

So instead, let’s start by setting an intention to shift the pattern.

You have to dig deeper.  And yes, I know. When you’ve got that entrepreneurial spirit, it can be hard to sit the hell down and make some space. But that’s what’s called for here.

This is uncomfortable.  Which is precisely what you are avoiding when you’re caught in the Flip-Flop Trap…Discomfort.

Are All Your Great Ideas Just a Cover for Your Fear?

Think about it. Once a business gets rolling, there’s some tedious stuff to focus on. Each time you grab for a new idea or direction, you’re not actually going for some great new idea. You’re simply avoiding discomfort yet again.

This is why you’re never ultimately fulfilled.

Because discomfort is part of the process of expanding into a successful business.

And it’ll continue to be!

Here’s a radical, totally woo-woo way of looking at it. (And this way of thinking happens to be what’s made me successful…)

Your business is really just a vessel for your own expansion. (For your soul’s expansion.) 

That means – in this particular pattern –  most likely, your soul is trying desperately to get you to face the discomfort of sticking with one idea through to the end.  Through the tedious, through the mistakes, through the hiring of your first person, even through success.

When you look at it this way, you might be able to see beyond just the usual advice to “grow up.” Instead, you’ll understand that you are growing FROM this dream or idea you got.  It’s about expansion.

How do you work through this?  It takes time.  And more than that, it takes self-awareness.  (Most people don’t want self-awareness. They just want a quick fix and promises of instant money.)

So choose one of your ideas and be willing to stick it out.

Make your motivation be about BECOMING and OVERCOMING.  Not about succeeding in order to prove that, by God, you’re okay.  The motivation changes the entire game.

After that, it’s about having a framework for keeping yourself aligned and on track with your focus and personal power.  (This is exactly what I teach in my Becoming360 program that’s rolling along right now!)

Hey, if you made it this far in the article, this topic must mean something to you!  Share with me in the comments what you tend to do with new ideas. Do you jump all over them and then lose the momentum? Or have you learned to deal with this pattern and find a better way?  Share share share share share.


  • Andrea Pokorny

    I have just come to realize (or admit) this pattern in myself. I’m certainly moving through it. I’ve learned my BIGGEST strength is the Love of Learning. In the recent past, I’d sign up for every program I could – at one time I was involved in 8 different online programs + a Masters Degree! Now that I’ve been taking action vs. “learning” my question is how do I use my strength? Especially when I fear I will fall into the next best program trap and find my days full of learning once again… Is it as simple as reasonably limiting my learning, I presume? Or, is there another use for this strength of mine? 🙂 Thanks Christine!

  • Allison

    Thank you for your insightful article Christine.
    I’ve realised I can get bored easily and I can get lonely working on making relaxation CDs on my own and so need to balance my life with a happy social life and other things I enjoy.

    I think the real issue, is I would enjoy working on making my relaxation CDs more of the time if I focussed on opening up my project to people I would enjoy working with – maybe to start with volunteers so that I get the social stimulation in my work that I need.
    I do have a tendancy to overload myself with tasks as I always felt overloaded with work at school and this is a habit I still have, being in recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome as a result. I am realising that the biggest asset I give to my pre-start-up business is me – my presence and that spreading myself thin also spreads my attention, focus and presence thin which does not make me feel good and is not good for business either.

    I am in the process of changing this and pruning out things I no longer need in my life so that my rose can flourish. I do need to balance my indoor work with outdoor work and to be in touch with nature through gardening. I am thus taking a short 10 week garden design course next year (one day a week) so I can complement the music composing/meditation writing and time on the computer with time in nature – but again, although I need time working alone, I want to share the gardening work with someone else as a team, so I am happy and fulfilled in my work socially as well as physically and creatively etc.
    It’s good for me that you’ve helped me to feel OK about sticking with uncomfortable, sometimes mundane things in my project and to look at the bigger picture. It has helped me to realise it is easy to get into an addictive cycle of creating a feeling fix by looking outside of the project to fix it, rather than drawing what’s needed into my project so it can be more of the fulfilling place I need, and hence will fulfil others in a natural process.

  • Wendy Robinson

    Yep! This is me! Part of my problem is trying to build a business while working fulltime. There are times when I can faithfully spend 15-20 hours a week on my business and then there are times when I can’t do ANY work at all because of my day job commitments.

    I can plan for this most of the time however because I’ve spent 2 weeks on day job stuff, its hard to get back on track with the momentum I created in building my business. It distracts me….and I forget where I left off OR so much time has past that the promo/project/marketing plan I was working on is slightly obsolete.

    And then here comes the shame…because I can’t finish anything. But thanks to my accountibility partner and you’re insight above, I’m making strides to get better at this.

    Thanks for this article, Christine!

  • Mandi

    I am in the program and it’s already amazing what I’ve uncovered in two days! I do have a lot of ideas, and got distracted with MLMs. I have more clarity now than ever, and still lots of ideas for my business. I am going to try writing down my ideas and ask my business what it wants, and how I can best serve. Then, focus on that idea and ride it through completion.

  • Corinne

    I had one of my biggest A-HA!’s this week when I realized that it is really just about ME! That sounds so selfish which could lead to some negative self talk, but just think about it: one of the instructions that you get on an airplane flight is to put your own oxygen mask on first before aiding others. That also translates to taking care of yourself so you can take care of other people. I don’t tend to flip-flop, but I do want to be and do everything for everyone. So for me, part of the “becoming” needs to be “overcoming” that tendency.

  • Carrie

    This is me, too. When I watched the Defying Gravity video where you talked about this, I instantly knew this was me! It was a big aha. As a result, I have re-aligned and re-decided to stick with one idea first and follow it through, before moving on to the next thing. What I am focusing on first is my art – creating my paintings. Then later on further down the line I can introduce my creativity coaching services where I want to help others get back to what they love. I really see how I was trying to do it all at once and splattering myself all over the place, getting stressed, and feeling rubbish. And I love the ‘becoming’ piece – I keep asking myself whenever I get stuck or scared “what am I being called to do here? who am I being called to be?”. Thanks Christine for these teachings – you really guided me back on track! Big hug 🙂

  • Marina

    Wow Christine! Spot on – again! This is so me! And it happens over and over again. Just yesterday was such a day again… all came up again. My… “oh, I should do this other thing (business) now…? Should I or shouldn’t I? …” (procrastinating my accounting…)

    I was working on your exercise from yesterday (360) as well – about finding out who I am – and it was so amazing. I burst in tears at some point.

    I am so glad that I signed up for your “Becoming 360” – It is awesome (even only 3 days in)

    Also tried the exercise for today – it totally changed my day today! 🙂

    I am so ready to “become” – finally!

  • Karen Pierce

    Thank you for clarifying a source of my shame, Christine. Very illuminating! Knowing about this cycle that looks in me like–great idea, effective in it’s implementation, results roll in, upper limit problem kicks in, shame comes in like an old friend (who’s outworn his welcome), new idea…effective,….you get the idea. Now my new mantra will be BECOMING and OVERCOMING. Thank you!

  • Pamela

    Oh, this is so me! There are certainly ideas that lose momentum and die. And then there are cycles of other ideas that pop up, get worn out, and then come back again. There are about 5 that I rotate through. I have two ways of dealing with this: for the ones that lose momentum and die completely, I look at it as a learning experience. Been there, tried that. For the ones that cycle, I have learned to let them do just that – by setting my projects up so that I can pick back up right where I left off. The bonus here is that after some time away, I have fresh eyes and can view the project/idea in a totally new light.

    Simply knowing that flip/flopping is my default pattern is crucial. Most of the things I work on are not time critical, so I can afford to let the cycles take their course. But where something is time critical, I work on overcoming it by scheduling discrete tasks, setting up external reminders, and working on it a bit each day. Even if I feel myself getting into “the flow,” on a difficult time-sensitive project, when the timer goes off, the task stops – to start again the next day. This helps me build the habit of doing the work each day until it’s done, even if it’s uncomfortable, or boring, or I’ve lost interest in it. There’s always something to be done that feels like a chore – simply building it into the day as a habit helps make it easier to do.

    As a lifelong flip-flopper, I have learned that it’s essential to have these new ideas and go down a few rabbit holes – if only to satisfy my creative or intellectual curiosity. The trick is in learning how to work around it, by not letting the boredom of the “stale” idea take the driver’s seat. (And in my case, letting some time go by to recognize what I keep going back to – that’s the one thing to choose to pursue.)