A couple of weeks ago, I revealed that I had been dealing with a crippling sense of self-doubt. It slowly suffocated my creativity until all that remained were questions about the direction of this blog and the quality of my writing. It paralyzed me. For a minute. Then, in the midst of my creative crisis, I realized that self-doubt doesn’t have to be a negative force in my life. It can be the fuel that propels me forward toward greatness or at least self-improvement.
Self-doubt plagues all of us at some point in our lives: the moment before a big exam; the moment you realize you are now a parent responsible for raising a tiny human; the moment before you hit publish on your latest blog post; or the moment you realize you are so far out of your comfort zone. These are the moments when our fear of failure fills us with questions about our worth and ability. But this is also when fear and doubt can become our greatest tool for success.
So today I created a list of ways that we can turn our self-doubt into success:
5 Steps to Turn Self-Doubt Into Success
1. Take a Break
When doubt and insecurity seem to be overpowering your self-confidence it’s time to take a break. Put down your laptop. Set your project or work aside. Take a deep breath and slowly walk away. Go enjoy some quality napping. Binge watch that series on Netflix that you’ve been hearing about. Or indulge in some deep belly laughs with your favorite people. Sometimes a break is all you need to get out of your own head and out of your own way.
2. Make a List of Your Strengths
Once you’ve found your way back to a better center of emotion through all that side-splitting laughter, you can begin to work towards self-confidence. Create a list of all your strengths and accomplishments. By recalling everything you have achieved so far, you will also be reminding yourself that you are capable of brilliant things. You are worthy of success. And you already possess the ability to achieve your goals.
Now that you have been reminded of your brilliance, it’s time to re-evaluate your current goals or project. For me, it was my writing and this blog. For you, it may be that job promotion or entrepreneurship. Either way, your self-doubt has given you the opportunity to re-evaluate your position and goals. You have considered your strengths. Now it’s time to consider your desires, as well as your weaknesses. What do you want out of this project or goal? How can you get it? And what can you do improve the quality of your work or craft?
By harnessing your self-doubt during this step, you have the ability to continue to push yourself to the next level. Whereas those with complete confidence often fail to realize that there is always room for improvement.
4. Practice Your Craft
This one may seem like common sense, but there are many people out there who fail to realize that true improvement comes with practice. Take some classes to hone your craft or expand your know how. Read a book to learn how to improve your craft. Research how others became successful. And take time to practice. If you’re a writer, write daily. If you’re a public speaker, rehearse your speeches in front of a camera. If you’re a businessman/woman, become an expert in your field. The important thing is to practice and continue learning.
5. Dive In
Last, but not least, it’s time to dive in! You know you’re amazing. You’re willing to work hard. You are worth it. And your dreams are worth it, so now it’s time to go out and get it!
Good luck to all the dreamers out there!
Have you experienced self-doubt? How did you overcome it?