You are here
How To Overcome Self-Doubt: 5 methods to improve your Confidence
“Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself.” ~Cicero (Roman Philosopher)
We all question whether or not we are working hard enough, making enough money, following the right path or if we are going to be ‘successful’ enough.
Self-doubting thoughts and a negative mindset can become debilitating if not dealt with at an early stage.
During my time as an Executive Coach, I’ve discovered methods that have helped boost confidence and erase self-doubt. The most successful are:
1. Stop comparing yourself to others
When you compare your accomplishments to a colleague’s, you can start feeling inadequate.
One key thing to remember when you find yourself doubting, is that everyone is on their own journey.
Your journey is unique to you, and therefore it is important that you do things that work for you. This may be different to the people around you but that doesn’t matter. You have to have the conviction that you are at your best when you are doing things that make you feel good.
2. Forget about what everyone else is thinking of you
Worrying about what other people think of you will continue to hold you back from doing something that’s right for you. You’d rather do nothing and not get judged than do something and risk criticism.
Focus your energy on things you can control. Everyone will always have an opinion on something.
It’s time to face those fears and make that decision; after all, what is the worst that can happen!
3. Be kind to yourself
Guy Winch, a licensed psychologist, says in his ‘Ted Talk’, “we all need to practice emotional first aid”.
“Why is it we have medicine cabinets for common physical injuries like cuts and colds but no toolkits for common psychological injuries such as failure, rejection, guilt, and loss?”
If you were providing reassurance to a friend, you wouldn’t say, “well you are not particularly good at your job so why would anyone else want to employ you”. You would reassure them of all their positive attributes.
So why not be kinder to yourself. Why not write yourself a letter reminding yourself how wonderful and unique you are.
Sometimes a kind word or compliment from someone can make you feel better, but if there is no one around to pick you up, have a go at doing it yourself. Remind yourself of your achievements and successes.
If an experienced Psychologist like Guy Winch says writing a letter to yourself works, …..it must work, so try it.
4. Develop positive thoughts & Relationships
James Clear, author of ‘Transform your habits’ found it takes 66 days to change a habit. Whether it takes 50 days or 500 days, you have to put in the work either way.
You can do this by surrounding yourself with positives phrases and people.
Ensuring you have a mantra to reinforce positive thoughts, for example ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’, when you are getting impatient or ‘our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall – Confucius’ when you feel things are piling on top of you and you are not making progress.
To reinforce these positive thoughts, surround yourself with positive people who will reinforce just how great you are. Develop and nurture these relationships to help you stay positive and stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution.
When you’re feeling positive, you’re feeling good. And when you’re feeling good, good things happen. Believe in yourself – your friends and family do!
5. Go with your gut
Lastly, I am a great believer in going with your gut. After all, the person that knows you best is you! Trust your own judgement, as getting caught up in a decision is another surefire way to reinforce self-doubt.
Don’t procrastinate, make a decision and if it’s not right, make another one. Life is a journey so keep moving forward. We can’t know everything, so don’t be too hard on yourself. If you are, go back to number 3!