Overcome your Self-Doubt: 5 Easy Tips

All of us grapple with self-doubt once in a while in our lives. This happens to even successful men and women both. To me, a little self-doubt is not only normal, it’s healthy. It prevents a leader from crossing the fine line between self-confidence and over confidence. But highly successful people don’t let self-doubt derail them from what they set out to accomplish. On the contrary, they highly believe in and don’t compromise when it comes to Self-Esteem.

Self-doubt may stem from previous negative experiences including failures and fears. Those with insecure events may have experience being led down or criticized, that can contribute to self-doubt later in life. We all have a deep societal pressure to achieve, which can lead us to doubting ourselves.

In this article, we shall discuss How to overcome Self-Doubt:

1. Stop Making Excuses

Self-doubt often makes us rationalize a situation to fit our emotional state. We may be afraid to fail, afraid to look bad, afraid to take on more than we think we can handle. So, we become adept at making a lot of excuses for why an opportunity that presents itself isn’t a good fit.

As Steven Pressfield says in Do The Work! Overcome Resistance And Get Out Of Your Own Way, “The enemy is our chattering brain, which, if we give it so much as a nanosecond, will start producing excuses, alibis, transparent self-justifications, and a million reasons why we can’t/shouldn’t/won’t do what we know we need to do.” Think back on opportunities you turned down. What reasons did you give yourself? Where these legitimate reasons or just excuses? Remember that excuses are mental barriers we erect that hold us back.

2. Stop Comparing Yourself

As Theodore Roosevelt once said: “Comparison is the thief of joy”. This saying sounds true in many ways. If you’re experiencing self-doubt because you’re afraid you won’t accomplish something at the same level as someone else, then it can be a real paralyzing feeling for anyone and everyone.

Everyone’s journey and ideas of success are different. What we can control and focus on is our own path and where we want to take it, regardless of where other people are at or what they have done.

3. Spend Time with Like-Minded People

In situations when you feel crippled with immense sense of self-doubt, stay away from the people you don’t get along with or you don’t like. They will worsen your day(s) and your plans. Staying away from such (negative) forces will always be in your best interest.

On the contrary, get closer to your friends and family members who believe in you and they know that everything that you are capable of doing will always be to your advantage. When you’re feeling self-doubt, surround yourself with people you are comfortable with. They can remind you of how talented and resilient you are during times when you’re not feeling that way about yourself.

4. Stop Asking Others’ Validation

While it is great to feel reassured from others on our looks, attire, capacity, capabilities and so on and so forth, it’s equally important to have our own faith in ourselves in the first place. Constant reassurance from others doesn’t mean much if we still don’t believe in ourselves.

By constant validation from others, you might be weakening your faith in yourself, e.g. if you’re undertaking a new project, and you continue to change your direction on what you have created based on feedback you receive, you might end up losing your voice and the end product becomes a diluted version of you. Take some advice, but at some point, make a decision on what feels right to you.

5. Start trust Your Gut & Values

In Disrupt! Think Epic! Be Epic!, author Bill Jensen outlines 25 successful habits of 100 contemporary heroes — people who found ways to cut through the complexity of today’s fast-paced, ever-changing environments to do extraordinary things. The trait driving the majority of the best practices for these 100 entrepreneurs is “Trusting Your Gut and Values”.

More and more, we are called upon to make quick decisions with very little information. When you know what you stand for and what is important to you, it becomes easier to make decisions that are aligned with your values, with what matters to you. Self-doubt cripples our ability to make important decisions — knowing yourself and living your values is one of the best antidotes to self-doubt.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, self-doubt is a habit — nothing more, nothing less. And regardless of where it came from, you can work to free yourself from chronic self-doubt by building better habits.

If you’ve read through the above article and if it makes sense to you, choose one or two of the tips listed above to begin wih and try them out for a week or two. I think you’ll find that while difficult, reducing self-doubt and building self-confidence are actually far more doable than you might have imagined.

Learn how sometimes smaller things in our lives make huge impact and you can take some learnings on a personal and professional level by following me on LinkedIn and on our official website. Also follow us on social media: Facebook, LinkedIn, Medium, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Muhammad Sajwani is the Founder, Managing Director and Principal Consultant at Evolve HR which aims at transforming, enriching and evolving Human Capital of Pakistan. At Evolve HR, him and his team thrives in challenging assumptions that hinder organisational aspirations, by creating innovative solutions that yield maximum impact, scalability & benefit to a wider base of stakeholders. As a Business Coach and Organisational Consultant, Sajwani knows how to combine business insights with people insights to transform organisations and put them on the path to growth.

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C-Level HR, Transformation Leader, Board Advisor, Writer, Business Coach & Organisational Consultant

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Muhammad Sajwani

Muhammad Sajwani

C-Level HR, Transformation Leader, Board Advisor, Writer, Business Coach & Organisational Consultant

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