There are times in our lives when we feel inadequate and incompetent, but for some of us, this is the way we feel all of the time. We are so busy putting ourselves down, that we simply stop learning and trying to and improve our lives. We are discouraged and depressed.
Self-doubt often stems from negative experiences early in life. If you were made fun of when you were a child, or a teacher or parent said you will never amount to anything, you may still carry those doubts about your abilities.
(Please note: If you are struggling to deal with traumatic experiences, please don’t hesitate to seek help from a counselor or other mental health professional.)
Even as adults, the negative criticism we receive can make us doubt ourselves. Is it possible to turn things around and silence the nagging mental voice that says: “you’ll never be good enough?”
Absolutely! Here are some strategies and tools:
Ignore Negative Criticism
This applies to both past and present. Don’t allow negative people - whoever they are - to add their voices to the recording in your head. They’re likely taking out their anger on others, because of their own inadequacies. People’s negative attitudes speak more about them, than they do about you!
Stop negative self-talk
Stifle your tendency to criticize yourself. By agreeing with those who criticize you, you surrender your power.
Firmly ignore the voice in your head that says you’re going to fail. When you stop listening, it will grow quieter, and eventually disappear.
Prepare yourself and do your best
It is not enough to think positively; you must also actively pursue success. Visualizing your end goal will help you make the right choices, but you must show up, and do the work. Overcome self-doubt by writing down and focusing on your skills, resources, and existing qualities.
Draw up a list of at least 5 good things about yourself, and every day, read it out aloud, a number of times. This will build belief in yourself.
Positive thinking helps prepare your mind to succeed, but there are other things to do as well:
Set reasonable goals. Decide what you want to do, and by when. But keep your goals realistic, or you will quickly become discouraged. Start small, build on your successes, and grow bigger with your dreams.
Take action. Inactivity and apathy breeds depression and self-doubt. Immerse yourself in achieving your goals. A marathon is completed one step at a time, and if you keep on keeping on, you will succeed.
Remember, you cannot reach the top of a mountain in a single giant leap. It takes many steps and obstacles that must be overcome along the way, but when you finally reach the peak, the view will be incredible. The same is true of success and achieving your goals.
Take baby steps, keep achieving small successes, and you will have the confidence to reach your dreams, and have fun along the way.