3 Steps to Overcoming Self-Doubt for a Longer, Happier Life
Overcoming self doubt can be one of the hardest obstacles we face as human beings. Doubt is insidious…creeping into every aspect of our lives and affecting the bridge between who we are now and who we want to be in the future.
For many of us, our lives are cyclical. Things are going along, if not happily then somewhat smoothly, when a single event or a series of events make us question, “Why am I settling?” or even, “Why am I trying so hard?”
Is Self-Doubt Strangling Your…
• Personal growth and health?
• Career and ambition?
Do you wonder how successful people become successful? How do they go from a concept to a plan? From a plan to a real-world application?
Overcoming Self-Doubt: Step One
Believe in yourself, in your ability and determination to make your dreams and goals a reality.
This sounds too easy, doesn’t it? The truth is, this is the most crucial step. Figure out why you feel doubtful of your success and work to change how you’re looking at it. It’s a fact that you might not know everything – but you can learn.
It might take working harder than anything you’ve ever had to do in your life – but you can do it. It might mean tightening your belt, embracing a new ideology, or actually changing your entire lifestyle – but you can accomplish great things.
Stephen King, Oprah Winfrey, J.K. Rowling and Tyler Perry had to believe in what they had to offer enough to not only overcome self doubt within themselves…but to also overcome the doubt of others, obstacles they met along the way, rejection and more often than not failure.
Nothing stopped them from trying again and again to reach the goals they set for themselves because they knew it was only a matter of time before they were successful. After every perceived rejection, they picked themselves back up and knocked on another door.
If you do not believe in your skills, in what you bring to the table…why should anyone else?
Overcoming Self-Doubt: Step Two
Surround yourself with positive people that believe in and/or contribute to your goals.
The most important reason for this is simply that other people’s behaviors, attitudes and moods are infectious. “Misery loves company.”
Negative people enjoy venting about their unhappiness and dissatisfaction with life. They leave you feeling tired, emotionally drained and unable to focus on your goals and dreams.
By surrounding yourself with positive people who are happy, energized and motivated, you’re more likely to emulate those aspects of their personality.
Positive thinking is also proven to work wonders for your health. By just thinking positive thoughts on a daily basis you can lower your risk of death from chronic diseases by an astounding 55%!
Choose positivity and allow your mind to consider possibilities, open yourself to opportunities and fulfill the objectives you have for your life. You are in control in overcoming your self doubt
Overcoming Self-Doubt: Step Three
Cut yourself some slack – remember you’re human!
Once you are on the path to your goals – whether they are personal, professional or health-related – you may often hold yourself to an impossible standard. You aren’t perfect. You are going to make mistakes.
Every setback to your goal should revitalize your determination to succeed. Forgive yourself and move on – don’t beat yourself up, don’t dwell on the negative. Learn from what went wrong and try again…and again…and again.
Every achievement should be celebrated. Keeping a journal of how far you’ve come will help you focus on what is going right rather than what is going wrong.
Don’t Fall Prey to the Imposter Syndrome
Imposter syndrome is self-doubt taken to the next level. That is what psychologists call it when – no matter your successes – you still feel as though you aren’t good enough.
This condition affects far more women than men and doctors believe it is due to the fact that women are taught more about humility and modesty from birth – that confidence isn’t ladylike behavior.
If you tend to attribute your successes to luck – right place/right time – more than your own hard work and ability, you aren’t giving yourself the credit you deserve.
Dr. Linda Carli, PhD and Wellesley College social psychology professor, says “Both men and women don’t like boastful women. You can be really competent and that’s fine, as long as you don’t brag about it.” For a woman this could have originally been a side effect of work inequality.
Recognize the signs of self-doubt or imposter syndrome. Facing these fears with a “what is the worst that could happen” attitude will put the situation in perspective and often leave you pleasantly surprised at the outcome.
Overcoming self doubt will allow you the freedom to pursue your dreams without that sick anxious feeling in the pit of your stomach – leaving you healthier both mentally and physically. Know that you are the one in control for overcoming self doubt and that every bump in the road doesn’t mean the trip is over.