If your default state of mind is one of self-doubt, you’re not alone. Self-doubt is ubiquitous among women, regardless of qualifications, experience, and skills. The women that I coach are high-achieving professionals who have all the credentials they need to prove their abilities. They have received high praise from supervisors and colleagues. And yet, they still doubt themselves.
The problem is, credentials and external praise cannot create a belief in yourself. Only you can do that.
Why Don’t We Trust Ourselves?
Women are conditioned to seek external validation from a very young age. That is one reason why girls generally do so well in school. Our goal becomes pleasing our teachers instead of trusting in ourselves. We follow the path prescribed by others instead of taking our own leaps, following our instincts, and thinking creatively. And that is when we begin to doubt ourselves.
If, when we’re children, we started to internalize thoughts such as “the teacher knows best” or “I need to do what I’m told,” those beliefs become automatic and part of our subconscious. Unless and until you examine your subconscious beliefs, they will still be driving your actions (or inactions) as an adult.
What Do You Think When You Think About Yourself?
Changing your belief about yourself starts with changing your thinking about yourself. To get to the root of the problem, we always begin by looking at the underlying thoughts. What are you thinking when you’re thinking about yourself (and doubting yourself)? In other words, what thoughts are creating the feeling of self-doubt for you?
For many of my clients, self-doubt is created by thoughts like these:
- I just don’t know if I can do this.
- I don’t know what I really want.
- I don’t trust myself to know what to do.
- I don’t have what it takes.
- Someone else said I won’t succeed. They’re right.
What are the thoughts that are creating self-doubt for you?
When we have these thoughts swirling around in our heads unexamined, they seem 100% factual. And mandatory. The good news is that they are neither factual nor mandatory. They are subjective thoughts and they are 100% optional.
You can let go of these thoughts. Right now.
How To Create Belief In Yourself
The first step is to write down the reasons why you don’t believe in yourself. These are your thoughts.
Then ask yourself why you’re choosing to think those thoughts. Challenge yourself to think of reasons why those thoughts aren’t actually true. What are reasons why you are capable? Why you do know what you want? Why you can figure it out?
Write down those reasons. Those are the new thoughts that you need to practice thinking. Practice them daily.
When you’re rewiring your brain, you will notice that you will have moments where you are simultaneously believing both thoughts: the old thought (that you can’t) and the new thought (that you can). This is normal. Give more air time to the new thought. Ask yourself how you can create more evidence to support the new thought by the actions that you take. The more evidence you create, the easier it will be to believe.
When you realize that you can create belief in yourself by changing your thinking, it’s the most empowering feeling ever because you discover that it’s within your control and no one can ever take it away from you. You no longer need to rely on external validation for your belief. You just get to rely on yourself.
If you need help with this, contact me to schedule a free call. Once you learn how to believe in yourself, there is nothing you can’t do.
Go forth, grow, and bloom.