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Five Ways to Conquer Self-Doubt

Five Ways to Conquer Self-Doubt

Alexandra Levit | Excelle

Self-doubt has been something I’ve struggled with all my life, from debating whether I could get into a top-tier university to believing I could succeed as a writer. It’s a very human emotion, and it’s made worse for some people because of life experiences or temperament.

Self-doubt also makes you feel alone. Sometimes you think you’re the only person in the universe who suffers from a crisis of confidence, and you wish that you could be more like your successful, self-assured neighbor. Well, I guarantee that your neighbor doubts himself every now and then, too.

You won’t ever be able to rid yourself of doubt entirely—believe me, I’ve tried. But I hope that these suggestions will lessen your pain when dark thoughts are all around you.

1. Go Back in Time
The first step in overcoming self-doubt is recognizing that it’s there in the first place. Think about the circumstances that are leading you to feel insecure, and see if you notice any patterns. Are there particular situations (for example, dealing with a new boss, speaking in public) that prompt you to feel this way? Make a note of times in the past when you doubted yourself but ended up coming through with flying colors. Knowledge and recognition of your past successes will bolster your courage regarding what you can achieve in the future.

2. Defeat the Doubtful Thoughts
In one column, write a doubtful thought, and in the opposite column, write facts that dispute that doubtful thought. For instance, suppose you are afraid to invite a new colleague to lunch because you’re afraid you won’t have anything to talk about and she won’t like you. Statements that refute that thought might be: “We can spend at least an hour talking about the office culture here and what she did before this” and “She will like me because I’ve made a sincere overture to get to know her better.”

3. Keep an Event Journal
If you’re a person who experiences a lot of self-doubt, then it’s time for a test. In the course of a single day, write down all of the things—simple and complex—that you accomplished without a hitch. These can be things like “ran productive staff meeting” or “had great talk with Brandon over coffee.” Then, write down the things that didn’t go so well. You will inevitably notice that the list of things that went well far outweighs the list of things that didn’t, and this will hopefully allow you to see your doubt in a different light.

4. Call on Your Cheerleaders
Often, our loved ones can see our lives much more objectively than we can. Being a natural introvert, I sometimes doubt my interpersonal skills, and when someone doesn’t respond to me in the way that I expect, I occasionally get paranoid. It always helps to call one of my best friends so that she can assure me that I do, in fact, have a lot of wonderful relationships in my life.

5. Celebrate Your Successes
When a situation in which you doubted yourself turns out better than you expected, don’t just nod and smile and move immediately on to the next thing. Take a moment and reward yourself for a positive outcome. Do something you enjoy like going to your favorite restaurant or eating a delectable dessert. Taking the time to cement positive emotions in your mind will hopefully make the doubt disappear more quickly next time.

  • Greceaaaa2_max50


    over 2 years ago


    Nice meeting you here, how are you today i will want us to be friends contact me here with my e-mail address ( ) because i have a special reason why have contacted you so that i can send you my photos and also tell you more about myself here is my e-mail address( ) you can also drop me your email mail address i am waiting to get a reply from you remember that co-lour, language or age and distance does not matter but understand matters
    Yours New Friend
    Miss Grace

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    about 4 years ago

    It's impossible to be your own self-esteem coach or to get self-esteem from others. You may try to do this, but your efforts will fail. Your worth and esteem come from God. Once you reallize this - that you have a Creator who PLANNED for you to be here on this earth and that all of your worth comes from HIM, then you will realize your TRUE worth and the fact that you cannot muster it up yourself. It inherently comes from Him who made you.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 4 years ago


    I do need this now.....I have only my current job up to November or even less. I will consider this a s hard nudge to go to the state that we would like to go ...Oregon. I am an RN and been working in the Insurance , Medicare , even fraud medical review. So I know I have a skill. I have been sway form a hospital in patient care, but I sure could case manage and do other clinical review and audit. A new place , and no job....think about anxiety. I am considering this as n adventure w/ my or never !

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Account Removed

    over 4 years ago

    This was very helpful, especially for someone like me. I have a bit of a self esteem issue going on right now, but reading this cheered me up a bit. Thanks ^^

  • Hpim1902_max50


    over 4 years ago


    Thank you Alexandra for your insights! Always a pleasure to read your articles with topics that truly matter, but no one talks about.

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