Self-doubt can be crippling. It’s not easy to enjoy your life or to achieve great things when you’re afraid or doubt your capabilities. Many people stay away from situations that trigger these mental states, but that’s a severely limited way to approach life.
The best things in life lie on the other side of fear and doubt!
Here are some strategies pulled together from around the web for dealing with Fear and Self Doubt:
- Tackle smaller fears first. The way to become good at handling big fears is to tackle small fears first. Look at the things that make you just a little bit uncomfortable and force yourself to do them. You’ll notice that they become a little easier to do the next time. Then move on to more moderate fears and force yourself to do those too. Prove to yourself that you can overcome your fears. You’ll start to believe that you can do almost anything.
- Examine the source of your self-doubt. Why do you have self-doubt? What is the source of your doubt? Is this source reliable? Perhaps you’ll realize that you don’t have a reason to doubt yourself at all.
- Stay present with your thoughts. When we allow ourselves to look into the future, we are burning with worry. When you look ahead, you’re likely to assume the worst. Keep your mind in the present, and you’ll find that your fear diminishes.
- Ask yourself, “What’s the worst that can happen?” Think about the worst possible reasonable outcome. How bad would that be? How would you respond to that?
- Creating a plan that you can put into place for dealing with that worst possible outcome will lessen your fear.
- Breathe. Sometimes the best thing you can do is just breathe. Slow, deep breaths help to calm down your physiology and reduce the fight or flight response. Deep breathing can be an effective way to reduce the fear and self-doubt you’re feeling.
- Skip being perfect. Perfection is unattainable. The pursuit of perfection creates anxiety. Certainly, you’ll feel self-doubt if perfection is your goal. Be realistic and your fear and self-doubt will be minimized.
- Take action. Taking action is one of the best ways to overcome fear. Even if you’re afraid at the beginning, your fear will shrink in the face of your activity. Sometimes, getting started is the hardest part.
Pervasive Self Doubt
While the tools above may be helpful in a general way, let’s dive a little deeper and a little broader and investigate pervasive self doubt — the kind that is not just about tackling a new project. This is the kind of anxiety and self doubt that consistently (and painfully) colors personal and professional relationships. The kind that may come with the word “disorder” or “syndrome” after it in clinical settings.
In Scientific American, psychologist Ellen Hendriksen(1) describes Imposter Syndrome in the following way:
“Impostor Syndrome is a pervasive feeling of self-doubt, insecurity, or fraudulence despite often overwhelming evidence to the contrary. It strikes smart, successful individuals. It often rears its head after an especially notable accomplishment, like admission to a prestigious university, public acclaim, winning an award, or earning a promotion.
Impostor Syndrome doesn’t discriminate: people of every demographic suffer from feeling like a fraud, though minorities and women are hardest-hit.”
Those suffering from Imposter Syndrome tend to think they are a fake, and it’s only a matter of time before someone discovers the “truth” about them. They may exhibit false modesty because they are unable to take a compliment, and think any success they have achieved is only due to luck(2).
The strategies suggested by professionals? Many of the items listed above, and more(3):
- Talk about it with a trusted friend
- Educate yourself about it
- Document your successes and then celebrate them
- Challenge negative thoughts and perfectionism
The thing is, whether you are struggling with minor insecurities, imposter syndrome or maybe a generalized anxiety disorder, they all exist along a spectrum of less and more severe. But wherever we are standing on that spectrum, self doubt is a hollow place of unknowingness where we don’t know quite where we stand in relation to the world, or even ourselves. We may not even know if it’s ok to stand.
This deep self doubt reflects profound emotional trauma. It is a displacement of the self, a hollow and unstable foundation upon which we are trying to build our lives. It is also a cardinal sign that we are greatly disconnected from our deepest inner knowing and our connection to our Source.
Consider an infant who is sleeping. His mother has just arrived at the home of friends for a small gathering, laid her sleeping child down on the sofa, and now goes into the kitchen to say hello and chat with the group gathered there.
While she is away, the child wakes up and looks around, seeing only the faces of adults he doesn’t know. His face scrunches up in fear and anxiety as he searches, in vain, for the face of his mother.
In the next moment, his mother peeks around the corner to check on him, and he catches sight of her. The tears dissipate and a wide and knowing smile emerges. He sits up straighter, calm now, and relaxes in the reaffirmation of his primary connection.
This externalized event happens inside of us when we struggle with low self confidence, low self esteem, fear, anxiety, and self doubt, only now it is not the earthly mother we are seeking, but a deeper connection to ourselves and our own soul, a deeper connection to our own inner guidance system.
The techniques above may help us to manage the surface level of our fears and doubts, and may be useful as a way to begin to address the hollow of self doubt. However, if we don’t address that deeper, unstable foundation, we will merely be exchanging one anxiety for another, one layer of doubt for another.
If we are dependent upon techniques and strategies, practices and tactics, some part of us will always be on the lookout for where that hollow place is poking through and needs to be shored up. Some part of us knows very well that while techniques may help in the short run, they don’t fundamentally transform. They don’t meet us where we are longing for healing. They merely cover over the anxiety and hide the self doubt. Worse, we become fake and inauthentic as we struggle to show a false confidence to the world.
Is it Possible to Transform Anxiety and Self Doubt?
In a word: yes! There is a far better way to heal emotional trauma, self doubt, and anxiety, and it’s called The Trivedi Effect®(4).
The Trivedi Effect® consists of receiving Life Force Energy Transmissions. This potentized energy, harnessed from nature and transmitted directly to you, has the capacity to not only reconnect you to your deepest inner self, but also to heal, transform, and raise your consciousness.
This may sound fantastical, however, for the first time in history, this profoundly transformative energy has been put under the microscope. It has been measured and documented in some of the world’s leading research labs, and has been published in over 400 peer-reviewed scientific journals. The results of over 4000 experiments currently grace the shelves of the world’s leading universities – including the ivy league, as well as The National Institutes of Health. To read more about the science, please visit the science page on this website, or go to www.trivediscience.com.
How much do fear and self-doubt control your decisions or the outcomes in your life? How much more could you accomplish if your very consciousness itself was transformed? If the ground upon which you stand was made strong and whole and connected once again to that original authority which bestows all true confidence?