What do you think about this piece?
Written By: Jessica Millis
April 9, 2015
Let’s be clear and realistic. You are not going to overcome self-doubt through reading things online. This article gives you a few thinking points, and that is all you can hope for when it comes to self-help within a psychological area. No online article is a cure or bandage for your self-doubt.
The sad part is that many books will not help you either. If you want proof of this, then look for books on motivation, confidence and addiction, and 90% of the time, you will read something that is completely useless to you. If you want to get the most out of this article, then use it as a thinking point and not an action plan. Introspection will help you more than any online article will.
Your worst vice is advice
Self-doubters are often sponges when it comes to advice. They consider the thoughts and feelings of other people to be their own. This is how abusive spouses are able to control their partner so easily. Are other people imposing their will onto you? Have you ever done something without seeking advice or another person’s opinion? Try starting a project, or doing something (anything) without telling other people. Do not seek the approval of others, and do not allow them to notice what you are up to.
Self doubt is a common problem among writers (believe me, I know!). It can cause such phenomenon as writer's block. You don't know what is it? Lucky you, really. 'Writer’s block - This is the name given to a period during writing when further ideas around what to write are absent. It is a frame of mind that makes a piece of writing very difficult to continue.' (source: essay writing glossary). Scary?! Writers, fight your self doubt!
These “secret” projects may be difficult because you are conditioned to tell other people. It is almost an act of seeking validation, but you need to resist the urge to tell other people. Especially resist the urge to leave clues for them to find because the urge to do so may be overwhelming. Learn how to act without telling others, and you will notice a lot of self-doubt goes out the window.
Now for the important part! Let’s say that you successfully do what you wanted. Let’s say you complete a project such as losing 10 pounds. Do not tell anybody about it. This is probably the hardest part because there is no better validation than the type you get once you have successfully completed a project. But, you cannot tell anybody. It has to be your own personal success because the problem you are dealing with is “self” doubt, which means you must keep your success to yourself. This may not work so well at your workplace, especially if your boss has no idea who achieves what, but other than at the workplace, you should keep your success to yourself.
Books that may help you
Self-doubt often arises because of a lack of real purpose in your life, and finding purpose is not easy. Most people do not achieve any success until they are in their fifties because it has taken them this long to find a life purpose. Most will give up and have children in order to use them as a substitute life purpose. This is one of the reasons many people suffer with “empty nest syndrome.”
There are many Napoleon Hill books that will help you. Just make sure they are official books and not a piece someone has written in order to interpret the work. Napoleon Hill’s book “Think and grow rich” is the second biggest selling book of all time, second only to the Christian bible. Look up the Napoleon Hill Foundation (naphill.org) for a list of his works and the works of people after him. They will help you pursue your life purpose once you have found it.
If you are unsure of how your surroundings and your past are affecting your current state of mind, then try one of the Lance Dodes’ books on addiction. He offers a ground breaking new idea on treating addiction by looking at the psychological causes. A lot of it will translate into why you have so much self-doubt. Through reading his books (start with “The heart of addition”) you will see how your past and your surroundings are having an impact on how you think and why you do what you do. By reading how other people become addicts, you may see how you have become a self-doubter. You may be surprised to learn that you have grown your self-doubt to the point where it is almost a skill in its own right.
A symbol of your success
One of the Napoleon Hill books tells a story about a woman that spent several thousand on a diamond ring (and this was back in the days when a thousand dollars could buy you a house). Even during the times when she hit rock bottom and was hungry, she never sold the ring. Instead, when she was at her lowest point (psychologically), she would look at her ring and remind herself that she bought it, that she earned it, that her skill and talent bought that ring. At that point, she had trouble doubting herself because on her finger was proof of how great and successful she can be.
You may read elsewhere that you should keep a journal of your successes in life, and the truth is that doing this works the same way that the diamond ring does for the lady. As a classic self-doubter, your first instinct will be that you have no successes on which to reminisce. This is untrue. There are times in your life when you stood fast when others would have fallen. Getting through a tough time is a success in the same way that brokering a deal between corporations is a success. Your job is to now think up a new “success” and work towards it ceaselessly. As Napoleon Hill would say, if you do something towards it every day (even a small thing), then you make getting there inevitable.