Even the most confident people struggle with self doubt at times. But when you feel crippled by uncertainty it’s time to take action.
THAT SINKING FEELING
Maybe it’s because some childhood issue has been triggered, or maybe it’s just one of those things. Or perhaps self-doubt is something you struggle with on a regular basis. It’s a horrible feeling of not being good enough, not lovable, not having the ability to succeed. Mentally you feel indecisive, unfocused and decision-making is tough. Physically you may have a sick sensation in your stomach, or be tearful or lethargic. Spiritually light and meaning can seem to go out of your world, leaving you drained and dull.
Something may happen to trigger these feelings. For instance, someone you’re attracted to may appear to prefer someone else, or you may be passed over for promotion. Your friends may leave you out of their plans or you could fail a test or exam. Possibly the wider world makes you feel powerless, as you hear disturbing things on the news.
Self-doubt may have been with you all your life, as a script you run internally saying ‘I’m not good enough – I’m too stupid, fat, ugly, clumsy…’ or whatever. It’s horrible to feel you don’t deserve love and respect from others, and this can make you angry, afraid, depressed and solitary. Then begins a downward spiral leading to more uncertainty.
When you’re in this state it’s hard to believe you can come out of it. But just take the first step, and increase your positivity...
OTHER PEOPLE ARE IN THE SAME BOAT
Along with uncertainty tends to come the belief that you’re the only one that feels this way. But you aren’t! Even some of the most successful and apparently confident people have been tormented by self-doubt. It may help to read accounts of celebrities with depression and to realise the rich and beautiful aren’t by any means immune. This is a big clue to the fact that your uncertainty isn’t based on reality, either.
REALITY CHECK TIME
You may think that your reactions are based on what actually is or has happened. But that’s unlikely to be totally the case. Your self-doubts are coming from a place of fear within you, that doesn’t respect your true self and rules out all your achievements. Being in uncertainty comes from negative selection – counting what you can’t do or haven’t achieved, rather than what you have.
To combat this, create a self-value CV, starting with your name age etc. Then write some basic details of your childhood. Follow this by all the achievements you can remember, including simple things you did at school, friends who valued you then and now, tests you passed, challenging things you succeeded in. Some of the things you’ve achieved may seem basic now, but back then they were probably very scary.
Bring your CV up to the minute, with details of your present successes and reasons to feel fulfilled, along with a few compliments you have received recently. Look at your ‘CV’ whenever you feel especially wobbly.
CALM YOUR NERVES
In difficult situations, it’s tempting to charge on through, but resist this. Instead pull back for a minute, wait and be mindful. However you feel at the moment, you won’t always feel it. Breathe in a deep, relaxed way, connect with your surroundings and say to yourself this won’t last. There is something better waiting for you.
SHARE YOUR DOUBTS
One of the hardest things to do, when you’re feeling vulnerable, to share your emotions. But that’s just what you should be doing! Tell other people how you feel. Almost certainly they will have felt the same way you do at times. The fact you share will bind you closer to people and make them trust you. Sharing is one of the greatest boosts so don’t button up.
WRITE IT DOWN
A good way to objectify your uncertainties is to write them down. Don’t rush this – try to sort out exactly what it is you fear. Read each entry slowly and ask yourself if this is really true. Are there times and places when it has not been true? Is it the whole truth? If you’re still unsure, ask the opinion of someone you trust. Once you realise these uncertainties are not only inaccurate but useless as ideas to plan your life by, burn the paper.
Even if you regularly give in to negative self-talk, somewhere inside you there’s a spark of confidence. In fact deep within you have powers that you haven’t fully expressed. Try to think of a time in the past when you were confident, even if this was brief. Transfer this to your body language by standing straight, pulling your shoulders comfortably back, lifting your chin and smiling. You are on the way to being certain, and successful.
HOW WE CAN HELP
In the above we have looked at six ways to get rid of uncertainty – realizing you’re not alone, connecting with reality, sharing your feelings, writing a ‘self-value’ CV, writing down your doubts and getting confident. Practice these regularly and you should see an improvement. But if you want quicker results, or if you feel your doubts are too great to be got rid of in this way, just contact one of our encouraging Readers. There is always someone skilled and intuitive to point you in the right direction and cause your insecurities to melt.
PUBLISHED: 10 May 2017