Don't Let Prickly SELF DOUBT Be The Thing That Stops Your Shine: Tips For Overcoming Self Doubt

Updated: Mar 9, 2021


Dress: Showpo // Boots: Boohoo // Belt: Target // Hat: Urban Outfitters // Sunglasses: Amazon


Over the years, I have most certainly dealt with self doubt. A little bit of self doubt is good, in my opinion, because it keeps you grounded and pushes you to work harder. However, persistent lack of confidence and self doubt can be very crippling. I do not have all the answers, but I have experienced my fair share of self doubt and wanted to share a couple of things that have helped me overcome my lack of confidence in myself.


Focus on What is and Positive Self Talk-

When dealing with self doubt, it's more natural to hear the negative voice in your head telling you: "I'm not good enough", "I can't do it", "there's no use in trying", "I must be perfect", or "others are better than me"... etc. My favorite go to negative thought was "I'm not good enough", or "I will never reach my goal, so why try?" But once you become aware of your negative thoughts, shut them down. Focus on the present moment and train your brain to word things positively. THIS WILL BE HARD, AND WILL TAKE LOTS OF PRACTICE! I grew up hearing practice makes progress and just like learning anything new it takes practice and dedication.


The first step is developing a list of positive thoughts or actions you can use anytime you start to feel the negative self talk/self doubt creep in.

  • Create a list of positive comments you can replace your negative thoughts with: I can do this, It's just another chance for me to learn, Attempting to do this took courage and I am proud of myself for trying, I learned a lot about myself during this process, I choose to learn from my mistakes not be held back by them, I'm the only me and that's a good thing, I wasn't lazy, or mentally I needed a break and gave myself one... etc.

  • Create a file, folder, box or something tangible you can look through that makes you smile. As you probably know, I love pictures, so I have created a folder solely of pictures that brings me absolute joy every time I look through them. This will take you out of your negative space and bring you into a place of happiness.

  • Get moving- Have a list of quick energy-boosting activities you can do: Go on a walk, if you are working at your desk take a moment to do a couple arm workouts while sitting, stretch, play with your pup, or get up and dance.


Practice Gratitude and Breathing

My personal favorite thing to do is to take a couple of moments out of my day for breathing exercises. I even have it set to my phone to remind me to stop, take a breathe, and refocus. Also, I start each morning by acknowledging or writing down at least 3 things I'm grateful for. This is also a great tool to use when I start to go down that negative path. Some other great options for practicing gratitude are:

  • Share your love with the people that are important to you. Let them know how much you appreciate them.

  • Do an act of kindness daily

  • Follow inspiring accounts that make you feel good or watch inspiring videos

  • Call and talk to your friends and family more often

  • Volunteer

  • Take note of the beauty around you


Ask for help/guidance

Asking for help can feel scary, but sometimes it's necessary. Find someone you can trust whether that be a parent, partner, family member, friend, mentor, counselor, or therapist. Sometimes talking out your struggles, fears, and self doubt can really help you face them head on and then move forward with a plan.


MY BIGGEST ADVICE START A JOURNAL

Honestly, writing things down has made the biggest impact in how I perceive myself and how I handle life. Writing is also the thing that most helped with my self confidence and self doubt. The number 1 question I get when I tell someone they should start journaling is "What do I write about?" It's simple, I just write. I write about what I did that day, how I feel, something I noticed, my fears, a memory, my goals, things I'm grateful for, favorite quotes, things I want to share, ask myself questions, or things that made me smile or brought me joy. The more you start to write the easier it becomes. Writing has helped me discover who I am, what I want, how to improve particular areas of my life, I've gained appreciation for the things I have, and has helped me see myself in a positive light.


Here is a month guideline to help you get started with your writing:


Week 1- Start each day by writing 3 things you're grateful for. I typically like to write this entry in the morning, because it begins your day with a positive outlook. Take it one step further and write why you're grateful for it. At the end of the week look over your entries and hopefully you will begin to realize you have so many things that make you happy


Week 2- Write about times you have felt unsure about yourself and the reasons behind the uncertainty. This week will help you to identify your stressors and fears. At the end of the week look over your entries and start to think of ways you could resolve those feelings/problems. For example, I once wrote about feeling unsure about finding a new job, reason being I was scared of change, doubted my qualifications for the position, and wasn't sure what to expect from the company. Solutions, started out by making a list of all the major changes I had ever been through, then followed up with the outcome of those situations (found out I'm more than capable of dealing with change). Talked with previous supervisors, and mentors to reassure myself I was qualified. Lastly, made a list of questions I wanted to ask during my interviews to ensure I understood their expectations from me.


Week 3- Write down your common Negative self talk phrases, and then replace those with Positive self talk phrases.

For example:


I'm lazy -> I needed a mental break today. I can try again tomorrow.

I can't do it -> I'm fully capable of trying

I must be perfect -> It's enough to do my best

People wont like me -> I am enough

There's no use -> My challenges help me grow


Other great positive self talk statements are:

  • I choose to learn from my mistakes, not be held back by them.

  • I can do it

  • Practice makes progress

  • I'm the only me, and that is amazing!

  • I might have a ways to go, but I'm still proud of my accomplishments thus far.

  • I didn't quit reach my goal, but I learned a lot about myself during the process.


Week 4- Write down the steps you have taken to overcome your self doubt and celebrate them! Like I said at the beginning, overcoming your self doubt isn't going to be easy. It will take a lot of work, dedication, and practice. Just remember, PRACTICE MAKES PROGRESS! So never give up, take it day by day, and celebrate the steps you do take.


Thanks for reading. I would love to hear your thoughts. Was this at all beneficial, and please share any other ideas you have for overcoming self doubt.

Much Love, Reba Faye


 

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