One lives in the heart and the other in the brain. The heart voice says, “Trust yourself and be bold,” while the brain voice says, “You can’t do it. You might as well just give up.”
I deal with self-doubt every single day of my life. It takes over my brain and body and before long; my thoughts began to wander to the ‘dark side.’ I start questioning my abilities, strengths, and aspirations.
“When you doubt your power, you give power to your doubt” – Honore de Balzac
I enter into a state of disarray, constantly questioning myself. I’m riddled with rationalizations, instead of solutions, for the problems in my life.
I’ve been running this blog for nearly two months now and I feel relieved. I have lasted this long. But, without fail, before I hit publish, terrible feelings surface from my brain.
What if people don’t like me? What if people don’t like what I have done? What will they think?
These terrible thoughts circle my head. It pushes me to the point where I can barely function. But then, I hit publish and the other voice surfaces. I get a short-lived feeling of happiness, before the endless doubt surfaces.
The voices wage endless wars amongst themselves. I feel like I have some control over them. I use these techniques to tame my brain voice.
A) Ground Yourself
Live in the present moment. Self-doubt arises from past experiences or future problems/hindrances. The past and the future simply do not matter now. Now is the only moment that matters.
The past is unchangeable and irreversible and the future never actually arrives. Instead, the future is comprised of a series of ‘nows.’ ‘Now’ is the only time that truly matters, as it inevitably and continually occurs.
At this present moment, I am not hungry or thirsty. I am relatively happy. My body is functioning optimally (or as optimally as I think). I am able to think clearly. These are the positives occurring right now. Staying present is key to being able to focus on the positives, right now.
B) Have a Kit-Kat
Or any chocolate bar. The choice of chocolate really does not matter. The only thing that matters is taking a break. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take some time away from the project.
Sometimes, writing one article takes several days because I just can’t handle the content. My brain voice tells me, “Your content sucks. Your examples suck. Why do you even bother writing?”
Shifting your focus away from what we are stuck on helps us take a new perspective when we come back to it.
C) Feign Confidence
The seeds of self-doubt are strongest in my life as it pertains to girls. Girls will eternally confuse me. The self-doubt is rooted in a lack of confidence.
I recently started talking to a girl (big news, I know). But the whole concept of texting, mixed signals and smileys furthers the self-doubt.
What impresses her? Does she like me? Will she like me?
Flying, X-ray vision, and super strength are all great powers. But I want what Mel Gibson got when he electrocuted himself in a hot tub. I feel like that would be the ultimate power.
Feigning confidence is my method to dealing with the endless doubt that women bestow on me. Screw listening to your brain voice and let the confidence arise from your heart voice.
Be wary when feigning confidence. Sometimes, it can be misconstrued as cocky. Be genuine, be bold, and be truthful. Everything will work out. That is what I tell myself everyday.
The brain voice is strong some days, but I feel like I can persevere. I feel like I can let my heart voice take control. The seeds of self-doubt are implanted in everyone equally. Some people just have better control over them.
Like flowers, a lack of attention will never allow them grow. Pay no attention to doubt, avoid negative thoughts, take a step back, and feign confidence. I promise those seeds will wither and die.
What helps you overcome doubt in your abilities?