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How to Get Over Self-Doubt and Harness Your Full Potential

by A Hospidales
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“It’s not who you are that holds you back, it’s who you think you’re not.”

Hanoch McCarty

Do you ever feel like you’re not good enough?

Like you can’t do something because you’re just not smart enough, or pretty enough, or talented enough?

If so, you are not alone.

Millions of people around the world struggle with this kind of negative thought process on a daily basis, especially when it comes to their careers or personal lives.

It is known as self-doubt.

Every once in a while, it may not be such a big deal.

However, self-doubt can consume you, and this can have serious consequences. This is why, as soon as you notice the symptoms in yourself, you should do everything you can to stop it.

“When you doubt your power, you give power to your doubt.”

Honore de Balzac

Self-doubt can manifest itself in different ways and prevent people from achieving their goals or even question their own abilities, thoughts and feelings.

We feel like we are not good enough.

Self-doubt can also lead to low confidence which can lead to procrastination and avoidance behavior which will only make things worse

This can be a very damaging experience, especially if it persists over a long period of time.

Although dealing with self-doubt can be challenging, you can eliminate it from your life with the right attitude.

In this article, we will explore self-doubt in more detail – what it is, its causes, effects and how to overcome it.

“Once you become self-conscious, there is no end to it; once you start to doubt, there is no room for anything else.”

Mignon McLaughlin

What is self-doubt?

Self-doubt can be described as a feeling of uncertainty or lack of self-confidence in one’s own judgement, ability, or worth.

It can be crippling, and can hold us back from achieving our goals and reaching our full potential.

The way that self-doubt manifests itself can vary from person to person.

Some people have a tendency to overthink everything they do, while others are unable to see their own successes.

It can also affect how someone approaches tasks or challenges, sometimes leading them to avoid taking on new opportunities altogether.

For example: Suppose you are considering starting a YouTube beauty and makeup channel.

Your makeup skills are excellent.

In fact, people frequently compliment your work.

This is something you’re clearly talented at.

You decide to check out the competition before establishing your channel.

Almost immediately after looking at some of the competitors, your mind is flooded with doubts and insecurities:

  • There are hundreds of top quality beauty channels on YouTube. How am I going to stand out…
  • There are so many of them with millions of views. It’s impossible for me to compete with them…
  • These are experts who have several years of experience. And I’m only 19 years old. I’ll just be making a fool of myself. I’m not even that good…

You decide not to bother with a YouTube channel, and immediately feel better about your decision.

Over the next few weeks and months however, what you’re most likely to feel is regret and shame for not having at least tried.

If self-doubt is left unchecked, it can be very damaging to an individual’s professional and personal life.

“Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.”

William Shakespeare

Why do we experience self-doubt?

Self-doubt is a complex and pervasive problem that many people have in common, but the way it affects each individual varies greatly depending on their personality type and past experiences.

The origins vary from person to person.

It can be triggered by a number of different things, including low self-esteem, perfectionism, and lack of confidence.

It can come from a variety of sources, such as our own thoughts or the words of others.

But the most important thing to remember is that it’s not about who you are or what you do; it’s about how you think about yourself in relation to others.

Some people may feel that they aren’t good enough for something because they’ve been told that they would never amount to anything by an authority figure such as a teacher who they look up to.

Other times it may be because we are comparing ourselves to someone else’s accomplishments and therefore feel less deserving than they are.

When we experience self-doubt, it can have a negative effect on our success and happiness in life.

“Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.”

Dale Carnegie

Healthy vs Unhealthy Self-Doubt: How to Doubt Yourself in a Healthy Way

You must realize that having some level of self-doubt can be beneficial, and is not necessarily a negative thing.

In fact, it is important to have a healthy amount of self-doubt in order to avoid becoming overconfident and making unwise choices.

However, it is when we are riddled with self-doubt that we can become paralyzed by fear and indecision.

The key to achieving our goals without sabotaging our progress is finding the proper balance of self-doubt.

Healthy self-doubt is the self-doubt that helps us to examine our own beliefs, habits and behaviors, learn from our mistakes and make better decisions in the future.

“Negative minds full of fear and doubt produce negative lives, which can ultimately destroy your life.”

Joyce Meyer

It’s important not only for our self-esteem, but also for our overall mood and productivity.

On the other hand, unhealthy self-doubt attacks our sense of self, making us question everything about ourselves from our intelligence or skills to whether or not we deserve happiness in life.

It can be damaging if it prevents you from reaching your full potential.

Below are some times when self-doubt can be unhealthy:

  • It undermines your confidence and makes you question your every move every time you have to make a personal decision.
  • You are afraid to take risks or try new things because you believe you’re not good enough and are afraid of failing.
  • You experience self-doubt in almost every area of your life.
  • When praise comes your way, you are uncomfortable accepting it and avoid situations where you might receive it.
  • As a result of your self-doubt, you often regret the decisions you have made.
  • It interferes with your relationships.
  • You doubt your own abilities, and constantly question your own thoughts and feelings
  • You feel like you cannot do anything right.
  • You’re always too hard on yourself and feel like you’re never good enough.

“A person who doubts himself is like a man who would enlist in the ranks of his enemies and bear arms against himself. He makes his failure certain by himself being the first person to be convinced of it.

Ambrose Bierce

What are the different types of self-doubt?

Self-doubt tends to take three primary forms.

1. Imposter Syndrome

“Now when I receive recognition for my acting, I feel incredibly uncomfortable. I tend to turn in on myself. I feel like an imposter. Any moment, someone’s going to find out I’m a total fraud, and that I don’t deserve any of what I’ve achieved.”

Emma Watson

Imposter Syndrome is a feeling of inadequacy that you have when you are faced with an opportunity for success.

It is a feeling that you are not good enough, that you don’t belong, and that you are just pretending to be something that you are not.

It is a constant fear of being exposed as a fraud. It usually comes from low self-esteem or unrealistic expectations.

Psychology Today reveals that this phenomenon is not uncommon in people who are high achievers.  who are just starting out in their careers.

It’s also common among people planning to start an online business such as a YouTube channel or blog.

The following are some common symptoms:

– Constant feeling of inadequacy

– Fear of being exposed as not good enough

– Fear of other people realizing your limitations

– Self-doubt

– Low self esteem

If you notice any of these symptoms in yourself, you may have imposter syndrome.

“Doubt must be no more than vigilance, otherwise it can become dangerous.”

Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

Impostor syndrome is an incredibly common mental health issue that many people face, but it’s important to remember that it’s not your fault.

You can’t simply “get over” this feeling because it’s not just in your head. Imposter syndrome stems from the idea of self-doubt and insecurity, which is something that we all experience at some point in our lives.

The causes of impostor syndrome are still unknown, but there are many theories about what causes this feeling of insecurity.

One theory is that people who experience imposter syndrome have low self-esteem and low confidence levels.

It’s important to know what this syndrome is so you can identify it in yourself and others.

It will allow you to understand why these feelings exist and how they affect your work-life balance.

2. Self-sabotage

“What is required for many of us, paradoxical though it may sound, is the courage to tolerate happiness without self-sabotage.”

Nathaniel Branden

Self-sabotage is the act of sabotaging one’s own efforts, opportunities, relationships, or achievements. It can be intentional or unintentional.

There are many ways in which we can sabotage ourselves.

It can be by not believing in ourselves, or by not taking care of our health. Sometimes, it is even as simple as not following through on our commitments or promises.

For example, you stick to your diet plan successfully for two months, but you then overindulge on junk food for three consecutive nights.

It’s easy to criticize and doubt yourself if you habitually commit self-sabotage.

Self-sabotage is a problem that everyone has to deal with at one point or another in their lives.

We often see people who are not happy with themselves and sabotage their own happiness. They feel like they don’t deserve to be successful, so they make sure that they don’t succeed either.

3. Indecisiveness

“Indecision is the greatest thief of opportunity.”

Jim Rohn

We are all guilty of being indecisive at some point in our lives.

It can be because of the lack of time, the large number of options or just pure laziness.

Whatever the reason may be, indecisiveness can lead to a lot of stress.

The problem with being indecisive is that it leads to inaction.

This means that you are not making any progress towards your goals and you are not living up to your potential.

The problem with inaction is that it leads to stagnation.

This means that you are not improving your skills or knowledge which results in a lack of growth and development for yourself as an individual.

People who are indecisive have a really frustrating experience when they have too many options to choose from.

They can’t decide which one is the best one and this can lead to a lot of mental stress.

Why do we experience self-doubt?

“Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.”

Suzy Kassem

Self-doubt often arises from negative experiences in our past which have made us question ourselves or feel inadequate at achieving something important to us.

It can also be triggered by external factors, such as bullying, unfair criticism from others, a major life event, such as a job loss or the end of a relationship.

Additionally, self-doubt can be caused by low self-esteem or an unrealistic view of ourselves. We may even experience self-doubt if we are constantly comparing ourselves with others and find that we come up short.

How can we overcome self-doubt?

“Don’t waste life in doubts and fears; spend yourself on the work before you, well assured that the right performance of this hour’s duties will be the best preparation for the hours and ages that will follow it.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Self-doubt can be crippling. It can keep us from taking risks, trying new things, and achieving our goals.

It’s important to remember that self-doubt is just a feeling, not a fact.

We don’t need to let it dictate our lives.

The following are 10 powerful methods for overcoming self-doubt.:

1) Identify your natural strengths to kill self-doubt and achieve total confidence.

Identifying your strengths is a crucial step in determining your sense of purpose.

“Research shows that the happiest people are those who use their natural talents to the utomost.”

T. Harv Eker

Achieving great things is difficult if you do not believe in yourself.

To become the best at whatever you do, you need to know what your strengths are and play to them.

Being aware of what you’re good at will allow you to get rid of self-doubt and achieve total self-confidence.

Understanding who you are and what your natural talents are is key to achieving anything you want in life.

People who don’t know what they’re good at work in the wrong industry and are unhappy at their job.

“I seek strength, not to be greater than other, but to fight my greatest enemy, the doubts within myself.”

P.C. Cast

Your inner confidence and self-belief will grow as a result.

Finding out what your strengths are can help you figure out which career path is right for you.

You will know that whatever you are doing is your forte. Because you’re naturally skilled at it, you’ll instinctively know that you’ll never fail at it. 

You’ll be more motivated than ever before.

You’ll focus on this even more, and see great results from your efforts. Your confidence will skyrocket as a result of seeing how successful you can be when you do what you’re good at.

So, how do you identify your strengths?

It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely worth it.

The first step is to think about what makes you happy.

What are the things that make you feel excited and alive?

When you do these things, you’re more motivated and it’s easier to stay focused.

These are the things that you should pursue and make a career out of, because they will bring you so much joy in life!

The next step is to think about what other people always tell you that you’re good at.

What do your friends ask for help with? What does your family always compliment you on?

You probably already know what these are, but it’s good to get them down in writing so that you can see them clearly.

“If doubt is challenging you and you do not act, doubts will grow. Challenge the doubts with action and you will grow. Doubt and action are incompatible.”

John Kanary

This will help make your strengths even more obvious, and kill any doubts that might be creeping into your mind about whether or not they’re really true!

Think about how you naturally approach things. When something comes up that needs to be done, what do you always do first? How do go about solving problems or making decisions?

This can give us insight into how we think and process information, which will help us identify our strengths even more clearly!

Once you know what your strong points are, you can start to build up your confidence bit by bit until it becomes a permanent part of your personality.

“Greatness is finding your natural talent, fueling it with passion, planting it in well-nourished soil, and toiling in the garden until it breaks through the earth and reaches for the stars.”

Janet Autherine

2. Believe in yourself.

“Always be yourself and have faith in yourself. Do not go out and look for a successful personality and try to duplicate it.”

Bruce Lee

Your belief system is what controls your success in life.

It will always be the foundation of your success in life.

It is my firm belief that if you identify your strengths and build your business or career around what you are naturally talented at, you will be unstoppable and achieve success with confidence.

The only thing stopping you is yourself.

You control your belief system with your thoughts and actions.

In other words, your success ultimately depends on your belief system.

It determines how much you achieve and how happy you are with what you have.

It’s hard to believe it, but your thoughts and actions dictate your success.

You can’t control what other people think or do, but you can control your own thoughts and actions.

Your belief system, the foundation for all of what you do in life, determines how much you achieve and how happy you are with what you achieve.

If your beliefs don’t support success or happiness, then I strongly recommend you examine them.

Your beliefs are the root of all your emotions, the things you think about on a daily basis.

They become deeply ingrained in your subconscious mind and can have a profound impact on your life.

“Don’t wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles, and less than perfect conditions. So what? Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident, and more and more successful.”

Mark Victor Hansen

3. Practice mindfulness.

“Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement.”

Golda Meir

Self-doubt is a natural part of life. It can be hard to push through the feelings of uncertainty and fear, but with practice it becomes easier.

Mindfulness is a powerful tool for overcoming self-doubt.

It allows us to see the bigger picture, take a step back from our thoughts, and realize that we are not our thoughts or emotions.

The practice of mindfulness has become an increasingly popular way for people to overcome the negative thoughts and feelings that arise in their day-to-day lives.

Mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present.

When you practice mindfulness, you observe your thoughts and feelings from a distance, without judging them good or bad.

You simply notice the present moment without trying to control it or change it.

“You simply notice the present moment without trying to control it or change it.”

Michael Jordan

4. Meditate for 15 minutes every day.

Meditation is an extremely powerful tool that can help you get rid of self-doubt and build inner confidence.

When it comes to meditation, there are a lot of misconceptions.

People think that meditation is only for people who want to achieve enlightenment or become one with the universe.

This is not true!

Meditation can be used for many different purposes, including building inner confidence and getting rid of self-doubt.

One of the main benefits of meditation is that it can help you connect with your inner self.

When you are able to connect with your inner self, you will be able to trust yourself more and have faith in your abilities.

This is extremely important when it comes to overcoming self-doubt.

If you don’t believe in yourself, how can you expect others to believe in you?

With meditation, you will be able to connect with your inner self and have faith in yourself.

“If you don’t have some self-doubts and fears when you pursue a dream, then you haven’t dreamed big enough.”

Joe Vitale

Next , meditation can help you cultivate inner confidence.

When you have inner confidence, you will be less likely to doubt yourself or your abilities.

This is because you will know that you have the ability to accomplish anything that you set your mind to.

With meditation, you will be able to build up your self-confidence until it becomes an inner belief.

Lastly, meditation can help you stay positive and optimistic.

This is especially important when it comes to overcoming self-doubt.

When you are positive and optimistic, you will be more likely to take risks and push yourself outside of your comfort zone.

“I have self-doubt. I have insecurity. I have fear of failure. I have nights when I show up at the arena and I’m like, ‘My back hurts, my feet hurt, my knees hurt. I don’t have it. I just want to chill.’ We all have self-doubt. You don’t deny it, but you also don’t capitulate to it. You embrace it.”

Kobe Bryant

This will help you develop new skills and abilities, which will make it easier for you to accomplish your goals.

As we can see meditation is a very powerful tool when it comes to overcoming self-doubt and building inner confidence.

If you are someone who struggles with self-doubt or lacks confidence in themselves, meditation may be able to help.

In order to get the most out of meditation, we recommend that you practice meditation for 15 minutes every day.

This will help you connect with your inner self, cultivate inner confidence, and stay positive and optimistic.

5. Be your own cheerleader.

I believe every day your life speaks to you – through every experience, through the people you meet, and even through pain, fear and self-doubt.

Oprah Winfrey

Be self-aware. Know your triggers for unhealthy self-doubt and be aware of when it’s starting to take over.

Challenge your negative thoughts.

When self-doubt starts to creep in, ask yourself whether or not your thoughts are rational and fair.

Remind yourself of your accomplishments, skills and abilities. Focus on your strengths and how you can be qualified to do whatever you want to do, as long as it relates to your strengths.

So if you’re doubting yourself when considering doing something, acknowledge your feelings, and then refocus your attention and energy on exactly why you are qualified to do it.

Talk to yourself in a positive way, and act as if you believe in your own abilities.

6. Stop comparing yourself to other people because that is a major cause of self-doubt.

“Negative minds full of fear and doubt produce negative lives, which can ultimately destroy your life.”

Joyce Meyer

Unhealthy self-doubt can come from comparing yourself to others, not trusting your gut instincts and being self-critical of everything you do or say. It’s important to learn how to recognize these types of self-doubt so that we can change them into healthy self doubt (which will help us succeed in life).

It’s normal to feel some self-doubt when comparing ourselves to others, but it’s important to remember that everyone is different. What works for one person might not work for you, and vice versa.

If you compare yourself to other people all too often, you begin to feel like you don’t know what you’re doing. You find yourself thinking that there must be something wrong with you. You’re not good enough because you’re not producing the results that others are.

Instead of comparing yourself to others, focus on yourself and the progress you are making.

Compare yourself to where you were 6 months ago, and what progress you’ve made since then.

When you do this, you’ll be able to be your own best advocate and build a life that’s meaningful and fulfilling for you.

7. Practice positive affirmations regularly.

“A person’s greatest limitations are not genetic, but imposed by self-doubt, insecurities, indecision, and timidity.”

Kilroy J. Oldster

Positive affirmations are a powerful tool for helping you overcome self-doubt.

Affirmations are positive statements that you repeat to yourself on a regular basis.

They can help you to overcome self-doubt, boost your confidence and remind you of your worth as a person.

They can also help to keep you motivated when things get tough in life.

Affirmations can be used for any area of your life, including your career, relationships, and health.

When it comes to overcoming self-doubt, affirmations can be especially helpful.

The Benefits of Positive Affirmations

“Fight your fears and you’ll be in battle forever. Face your fears and you’ll be free forever.”

Lucas Jonkman

There are many benefits to using positive affirmations on a regular basis. Here are just a few of them:

-They help you to visualize the life that you want for yourself, which makes it easier to reach your goals.

-They remind you of all that is good in your life and why it’s worth living each day with gratitude and enthusiasm.

-Affirmations can be used to help you overcome self-doubt by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.

-They boost your confidence and remind you of your worth as a person, which can help to improve your relationships too!

Using affirmations on a regular basis will also make it easier for you to stay motivated when things get tough in life or at work. If you’re feeling down or discouraged, affirmations can help to pick you up and give you the boost that you need to keep going.

How to Start Using Positive Affirmations

“If doubt is challenging you and you do not act, doubts will grow. Challenge the doubts with action and you will grow. Doubt and action are incompatible.”

John Kanary

To start using positive affirmations, choose an area of your life where you would like to see changes. For example, it could be your career, relationships, health or even finances.

-Write down five things about this area of life that make you happy and grateful (e.g., “I’m thankful for my coworkers because they are supportive and helpful.”). -Next, write down five goals that you would like to achieve in this area of life (e.g., “I want to be promoted at my job”).

-Finally, write down five positive affirmations that correspond with these goals and happy thoughts (e.g., “I am capable of achieving anything I set my mind to”).

Here are some examples of positive affirmations that can help you overcome self-doubt:

-I am confident and capable

-I have the ability to do anything I set my mind to

-I am worthy of love and respect -I am capable of great things

-I am in control of my own destiny

-I am a worthy person.

-I am capable of overcoming any challenge.

-I deserve the best in life.

It’s important to remember that affirmations should always be stated in the present tense. So, instead of saying “I will be promoted at work,” you should say “I am a hard worker who deserves to be promoted.”

8. Surround yourself with positive people who will support and encourage you.

“Belief in oneself is incredibly infectious. It generates momentum, the collective force of which far outweighs any kernel of self-doubt that may creep in.”

Aimee Mullins

One of the most effective ways to overcome self-doubt is to surround yourself with positive people who really love you and believe in you. People like these can help lift you up when you are feeling down and can show you what you are capable of. Do not hesitate to ask those around you for support if you are struggling with self-doubt.

9. Try therapy or counseling.

“Each of us must confront our own fears, must come face to face with them. How we handle our fears will determine where we go with the rest of our lives. To experience adventure or to be limited by the fear of it.”

Judy Blume

This can help you to gain a different perspective on your self-doubts and may make them seem less threatening.

Therapists and counselors are trained professionals who specialize in mental health issues.

Their primary goal is to help people who are struggling with mental health problems, such as depression, insecurity, anxiety, self-doubt, addiction, trauma, etc.

Therapists and counselors have different approaches to therapy but they all share the same goal-to help people heal from their struggles.

The advantages of having a therapist or counselor are that they can be an unbiased and objective third party to help you through your problems.

They can provide counseling and advice to help you get through your problems and challenges more quickly than you could on your own.

Top 5 Tips for Talking to Your Therapist or Counsellor

1. Be honest with your therapist or counsellor.

2. Listen to what they have to say and don’t interrupt them.

3. Be open about what you are feeling, even if it’s difficult to talk about it.

4. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about what your therapist or counsellor is saying or doing that doesn’t make sense to you.

5. Always remember that your therapist or counsellor is there for you and wants the best for you, so don’t be afraid to ask for help!

“Erase self-doubt by working to build your strengths instead of focusing on your weaknesses. 

Rodolfo Costa


Self-doubt is a feeling that we’ve all experienced at some point in our lives.

It can be crippling and prevent us from achieving our goals.

In this post, we’ve explored the different causes of self-doubt and offered ways for you to overcome it.

By identifying our natural strengths and working on building confidence in those areas, we can start to chip away at the negative voice inside our heads that tells us we’re not good enough.

Believe in yourself, practice mindfulness, and be your own cheerleader; these are all key ingredients for overcoming self-doubt.

And remember – stop comparing yourself to other people because that will only make you feel worse!

Finally, practice positive affirmations regularly to help keep your mindset focused on your positives rather than your negatives.

These are essential ingredients for living a life without self-doubt.

If you find that you are still struggling with doubt, don’t hesitate to reach out for help.

There are many resources available to you, including therapy, coaching or even online courses on how to build confidence.

With a little effort, you can kill self-doubt and achieve total confidence.

“When you doubt your power, you give power to your doubt.”

Honore de Balzac

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