Self doubt is something we all struggle with from time to time. So when it does creep into your mind, it's important to take notice and not become a victim to it. Today I want to talk about how to overcome self doubt.
This is usually how it goes, at least how it goes for me. You get an idea in your head, a dream, an aspiration, something big and exciting you want to accomplish. It could be something like a new career, a big move, trying out a new hobby, following one of your passions, a declaration to grow into a better version of yourself, eating healthier, working out more….you get the idea.
Then you get that rush of excitement. It lights a fire in you. All you can think is, this is so awesome, let’s do this! You are totally pumped by this new aspiration. You start to daydream about it. You may even immediately start taking action towards achieving it.
But then, just like a rainstorm rolling in on your perfect beach day, the self doubt starts to creep in. It’s like your mind quickly flips on you. And instead of all these positive ideas swirling around in your head, you are now focusing on everything that could go wrong. And all the reasons you can’t do it. You feel totally defeated.
It’s crazy how you can go from thinking an idea is the best thing ever, to something that falls completely flat. You may even be seriously doubting why you ever even considered it, and your ability to make true change in your life.
I’ve had this happen to me many times. I like to think of myself as a big idea person. I love thinking about all the things I can do in life. All the things I could aspire to be and accomplish. But often in the past, I found myself feeling paralyzed from taking action. Or if I did take action, it was short lived. I was left feeling like someone popped my bubble of possibility. And sometimes feeling like my mind, and life in general, is against me in reaching those awesome aspirations I have for myself.
After a lot of work on myself, digging into personal development, my eyes started to open. It wasn’t outside forces to blame, it was me. I let doubt creep into my mind, and it took over. I gave up on something that was important to me because of fear. Fear of the unknown. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of it being hard. Fear of putting myself out there and possibly being rejected. It all stems from fear.
So I changed my mindset. Instead of, I CAN’T possibly do this, I thought - why not me? What’s wrong with my idea, and why can’t I do it? Other people are accomplishing amazing things everyday, and there is no reason that it can’t be possible for me!
It became clear to me that there is a way to push past this, and all the answers were inside of me.
So that is why I want to share with you these 5 simple tips for pushing through your self doubt.
1. Take Action immediately.
I have found the one thing that has helped me the most to push through self doubt is taking action immediately. Don’t even give your brain a chance to talk you out of it. If it is something that immediately makes you feel fired up, it is on your heart for a reason! So you owe yourself to go for it.
Your brain doesn’t like when it’s out of the comfort zone, it takes more energy to operate. So it thinks it’s just keeping you safe, by staying in your normal routine or reality. But if you want something new, you need to do something different. And that is exactly why you need to do something about it before your brain starts to talk you out of it. Tell that lazy brain to zip it!
The brain will still cast its doubts over you, but as you start to take action and move forward with a plan, you will begin to see that reality that what you want to do is totally possible. So choose to believe and keep pushing forward!
2. Make a list with all the reasons you CAN do it.
Instead of focusing on the negative, dig into all the positives. Get back into that mindset that you had when you first got excited about the idea, and brain dump all of that on paper. Pure gold!
Write down everything. Even if it seems silly or you don’t totally believe it at the moment. And don’t forget to write down how it makes you FEEL. This is so important, because emotions drive most of our decision making.
Now anytime you start to doubt yourself, so back to this list. Really take it what it says, and tap back into those feelings that drove you to want to do this in the first place.
And when you hear that mean girl voice in your head trying to tell you that you can’t do it, stick up for yourself and talk back to her. Flip the script and remind her why you CAN.
3. Get yourself a support system.
Find like-minded individuals who understand you, and that have similar goals for growth. The truth is some people won’t understand why you are doing what you are doing. But that doesn’t matter! It’s not for them to understand. You do you.
But having a support system will make a big difference. Having just one person that supports you will incrementally increase your chances of success.
So you might be thinking, where can I find these like-minded people? Lots of places! There are groups on Facebook for pretty much anything you can imagine. So do a search and join a few of them to see which is the best fit. Reddit also has every topic under the sun, so that is another great resource to check out. Local meet ups are also great if you want to connect with people in your community that you could potentially meet up with in real life (well, once we get past this whole social distancing thing).
4. Make yourself a plan and stick with it.
“A goal without a plan is just a wish” --Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
Daydreaming is fun, but it's not going to get the work done, and get you closer to accomplishing your goals. You need to have a plan, and it needs to incorporate the necessary steps to move you forward. I will give you some actionable steps showing how I do this.
Every Sunday I set time aside for my weekly planning. I write down every day of the week, and the tasks I need to accomplish. Notice I said NEED. I write down what I know I can realistically accomplish that day. The non negotiables. If I have an extra productive day, then I do more.
This ensures I keep myself on track and I”m continuing to make progress. As a stay at home mom of two littles, I’ve discovered this is crucial for me. If I just try to go with the flow, and do what I can, it doesn’t work. And making small progress is better than making no progress at all.
5. Remember that you were put on this earth to do great things!
You are uniquely you and special, that is the truth. And I believe with my whole heart that each and every one of us were put on this earth to contribute in some way.
So if you have something on your heart, it is your duty to see it through! Whenever you feel doubt, and feel like giving up, please remember this. Your special gifts aren’t limited to you. Your actions could inspire and impact others, so don’t forget the ripple effect that can happen just by living true to yourself without doubt.
It’s the mindset I developed by following these practices that allowed me to level up my own life. I’ve gone from stressed out and anxious working in Corporate America, to a stay at home mom who is following her dream of being her own boss and CEO of Feel Good Mama, as well as an actress. You can learn more about my journey here.
A few short years ago this would have been inconceivable to me. But when I decided to push through the doubt and believe in myself, that is when all the magic happened! If you show the universe what you want, she will listen.
I would love to hear the dreams that you have on your heart. So why don’t you put it out there in the comments, and make it real. Here’s to living the life of your dreams!