How to Overcome Self-Doubt. 

How do I stop self-doubt and enhance my confidence and worry less?

It takes strength and courage to ask the question. Often the most caring and compassionate people struggle with self-doubt.

Top performers in all areas struggle with self-doubt, anxiety, and fear.  

Overcoming our mental and emotional barriers is 80% of the battle and is key to our success.  

1. Refine What Your Purpose and Vision Is.

How to overcome self-doubt

It is so important that you define, or refine, your purpose and vision for your life.  "Where there is no vision, the people perish."  Stephen R. Covey, the author of "7 Habits of Highly Effective People", emphasized that we: 

  • Be Proactive
  • Begin with the End in Mind

To "be proactive" is to take responsibility for our lives - despite whatever our challenges are.  The temptation is to blame our parents, genetics, circumstances, conditions, or conditioning for our circumstances.   

Instead, proactive people find their sweet spot and choose who they want to be and what results they will achieve.  They move ahead by focusing on what they can control and take full responsibility for their actions and decisions.    

To "begin with the end in mind" is to focus on what we want to be and do.  Stephen Covey wrote,  "People are working harder than ever, but because they lack clarity and vision, they aren't getting very far.  They, in essence, are pushing a rope with all of their might."  We need to avoid getting caught up in the "I'm too busy" trap.    

It is important to know that the more your purpose and vision extend beyond yourself, the happier you will be. 

2. Decide to Stop Worrying So Much About What Others Think

Stop worrying

When we have a clear vision for ourselves, we don't worry as much about what others think.  The vision we have for ourselves is personal and sacred.  

Most people make the decisions they do because they want others to approve of them. When we do that, we spend our whole life trying to be the perfect person in the eyes of others, so that we will be loved and regarded highly.  When we are too consumed by what others think, we hurt our emotional and mental health. We end up living a miserable and frustrating life.  

Thibaut Meurisse, in his book Master Your Emotions, writes: 

You care what other people think of you because you want them to approve of you. You assume the best way to do that is to avoid making waves. As a result, you may spend your whole life trying to be the perfect person, hoping to be loved. However, it usually doesn’t work. No matter how great you are, some people won’t like you. 
You may try to ‘fix’ the image people have of you, but that won’t work either. People will still see you the way they want to, because of their own values and beliefs. Thus, if you base your self-worth on what people think of you, you’ll always be at the mercy of the approval of others. What will happen if they suddenly disapprove of you? Unfortunately, no amount of external approval will compensate for a lack of self-approval.

It is important to remember that people are interested in themselves - and not that much in anyone else - including you.  Also, it is important to remember that many will quickly judge you - based on their faulty beliefs - regardless of how great you really are.

3. Sharpen the Saw Daily. 

choose your image

Stephen Covey emphasized that we sharpen the saw.  Each day we need to take time to stop and renew ourselves.  This includes taking care of ourselves physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

Some of the most important things you can do to renew yourself and strengthen your vision are to take time each day to:

  • Visualize,
  • Seek inspiration,
  • Focus on the habits you intend to master or overcome, 
  • Plan out how you will pursue your vision.  

Visualization is a powerful tool!  What you think and imagine changes the structure of your brain – down to the very connections between the brain cells and even down into the genes. Your thoughts or activities turn certain genes on and others off inside the nerve cells, making proteins and then changing the structure.  Your brain can get better at whatever you choose to do.

4. Go To Work On Your Vision.

choose your image

How to overcome self-doubt

The most important thing we can do to overcome self-doubt, enhance confidence, and worry less is to go to work on our vision.  If your purpose and vision extend beyond yourself, you will be deeply motivated.  You will be willing to make needed sacrifices.  

Work helps us to focus on others, and to make the most meaningful contributions we can.   We grow and learn quickest when our sleeves are rolled up - and we have a clear vision in mind.  

Creating You Planner

Define & Make Your Vision a Reality

How to overcome self-doubt