What is your opinion of yourself? No doubt (no pun intended) you, like so many others, doubt yourself. This issue affects both personal and professional lives. Self-doubt and low self-esteem can keep you from reaching your goals and dreams.
These personality traits appear to be more common among women. If self-doubt plagues you, check out these tips to boost your confidence and trust yourself more:
1. Accept Yourself
I grew up with self-doubt. And even now, I vacillate between total confidence and demeaning self-doubt. As a result, I was always an over-achiever. When I came home with straight A’s on my report card, my father would take a cursory look and reply, “Is that the best you can do?” And while I knew he said it as a joke, it cut deeply. I know he was proud of me, but he just didn’t know how to express it.
Self-doubt is part of being human. How can you turn it into a strength? When used correctly, this personality trait can help you make better decisions, instead of rushing things. Think of it as a tool that guides your actions and keeps you from making costly mistakes.
Also, affirmations repeated to yourself can make a positive difference in your life. Find a few affirmations that resonate with you. Write them down. Then repeat them to yourself in front of a mirror. Or print them on cards to display around your home as reminders of your special strengths. I start off my day with reading the card I created and placed on my beside table: “It's gonna be a great day!”
2. Know You're Not Alone
Even the most successful people have doubts. They often question their actions and wonder what the right thing to do is.
Focus on building your confidence by taking these actionable steps. You might never get rid of doubts, but you can stop them from taking over your life.
3. Accentuate Your Strengths
Your doubts don't necessarily reflect the truth. They often mirror your fears and emotional struggles. Think about your achievements and how hard you worked to get where you are today.
Make a list of things you do well. Write down your skills and accomplishments. Accept praise from others gracefully and acknowledge your talent.
Celebrate your strengths every single day. Make positive affirmations and remind yourself how much you've done so far. Stop thinking of what you could have done better. You might be amazed at everything you’ve done!
4. Choose Your Friends Wisely
Negative people can drag you down and ruin your self-esteem. Nothing will ever be good enough for them. That's why it's so important to surround yourself with positive people who support you and listen to you instead of judging.
“You're the average of the five people spend the most time with,” is a quote attributed most often to motivational speaker Jim Rohn. Take a look around at your friends. What kind of average are you exemplifying? Do they build you up or drag you down?
5. Define Your Line in the Sand
Lastly, define your values and the values you live by daily. One of the assignments in a college course for my doctorate was to define our line in the sand. What were the values that defined my life and how far would I go to protect them? That one exercise was something I came back to year after year. I found it to be just as strong in every successive year.
Focus on the things that drive your actions and are at the core of your beliefs.
Overcoming self-doubt is a lifelong process. Stop questioning your own decisions. Don’t waste time overanalyzing – trust your actions and put your plans in motion.