While it’s true that everyone has times in their life when they feel inadequate and incompetent, it’s also true that some people feel that way more often than others. When you’re full of self-doubt it’s hard to build confidence in yourself.
When you suffer with low self-confidence, often you’re so busy putting yourself down that you fail to thrive in life. It’s easier to stop trying to learn and better yourself. You may even become discouraged and depressed.
Perhaps your self-doubt stems from some negative experiences early in your life. For example, if people made fun of you when you were a child, you might doubt your abilities even today. That’s because traumatic experiences can cause a cycle of self-doubt in your mind. And believe me, once it takes hold, it will take some work to let it go.
So, how do you turn things around and stop that nagging voice in your head that says you’ll never be good enough?
Here are a few action steps you can take to help you deal with self-doubt and build your confidence.
Let go of negative criticism
This applies to both past and present. Whether it was your third grade teacher, or someone at your current workplace. Let it go so that it doesn’t ruin your day or add to the loop of negative thoughts running through your head. Often when someone takes their anger out on you, it’s because they’re feeling inadequate themselves.
Break the habit of putting yourself down
Just because someone else puts you down you don’t have to agree with them. When you do agree with them, you give them power over you and your thoughts, and that’s not something you really want to do.
Go back to our tips on silencing negative self-talk if you need a refresher on how to silence your own negative “Nellie”.
Believe in yourself
One of the strongest ways to deal with self-doubt is to reinforce the belief that you can succeed. Instead of focusing on why you can’t do something, stop and figure out what stops you from believing in yourself. Once you have that figured out, you’ll be well on your path to increased self-confidence and success.
Be prepared to take action
It’s not enough just to think positively; you have to actively pursue success as well. Visualizing your end goal can help you make the right choices, but no one can do the work except you.
Make a list of at least 5 good things about you
One way to overcome self-doubt is to write down your positive qualities. Every day when you wake up read the list. Reading aloud will also help you to believe the items you’ve listed.
Positive thinking will help prepare your mind to succeed, but there are other ways you can help yourself achieve your goals as well:
Set reasonable goals
Decide what you want to do within a set amount of time. Keep your goals realistic so you can meet them. If you set unrealistic goals that you can’t meet, you’ll quickly become discouraged. Start out small and get bigger with your dreams.
Inactive people easily become depressed. To avoid this unpleasant situation, immerse yourself in achieving your goals. Hard work will always pay off in the end.
Revel in your success
Self-doubters tend to think they don’t deserve to succeed. But you do! You deserve a reward for conquering your self-doubt and becoming more confident. You deserve to be honored for your hard work and perseverance. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
Just remember you can’t reach the top of a mountain in one giant leap; it takes many steps along the way to reach the peak in due time. The same is true of success and achieving your goals.
Taking baby steps and attaining many small successes will bring you the confidence to reach your dreams. In the meantime, sit back and enjoy the journey to becoming the self-assured person you know you can be. It’s a wild ride, but it’s well worth it in the end.