“Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” — Suzy Kassem
Sometimes, our worst enemy is living right in between our own two ears.
“I can’t. I won’t. I’m not good enough,” is a mantra repeated more often than we’d like to admit.
Doubt in many ways is healthy. It's ok to question your experience, to be curious, to wonder.
It's only when that doubt begins to build mountains in your heart and keep you from transforming your life does this mindset become a problem.
Do not run from your doubt, my darlings, let it remind you what you are truly made of.
Here are seven ways to conquer self-doubt:
1. Look up. One of my favorite visuals is that of the vast Milky Way, a million luminescent specks strewn across a black sky, with an arrow pointing to a very tiny dot somewhere right of center and this quote by Carl Sagan:
Go outside, look up and put this life into perspective. Take a deep breath and remember that all those things that are so massive to you are only specks in the fabric of our universe. They are still real, but they are, in fact, much smaller than the way they feel.
2. Call a friend. Pick up the phone and call on someone in your life for help. Choose someone supportive and positive, with whom you can be authentic about your feelings. The simple act of talking it through, or being listened to, is sometimes the pick-up we need in those down-and-out moments.
3. Write it out. Grab a pen and just word-vomit your emotions all over a piece of printer paper. Scribble out your current thoughts, the feelings in your body, and anything else that comes to mind. Let it be messy and smeared with tear drops. Read it over once, then throw it away and keep moving forward with your life.
4. Move your body. Literally shake off self-doubt with some vigorous body movement. Run a couple miles, dance and sing along to the “Stranger Things” Spotify playlist (you’re welcome), lift weights, do some yoga, head bang to heavy metal — just move! Move so hard you have to catch your own breath and send everything else that doesn’t matter back to the darkness from whence it came.
5. Change the conversation. “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right” — Henry Ford
Redesign negative thought spirals by changing the conversation with yourself.
Turn “I can’t” into “it is possible,” “I won’t” into “I will” and “I’m not good enough” into “ I am enough.”
Correct these statements every time doubtful thoughts drift through your mind. This is the slow medicine; stay patient with yourself and give it time.
6. Encourage someone else. Turn your attention from your own woes toward someone else who could use a boost today.
Give someone a genuine compliment, hold the door, pay for lunch, acknowledge their strengths. Actively choose to build another up and watch your own self-doubt melt away.
7. Just do it. “Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it.” — Bill Cosby
Don't think you can? Just do it!
Take that risk. Tell them you love them. Invest in that small business. Be yourself!
On the other side of your comfort zone, there is freedom, always. Stay focused on your goal and dive.