Deep down, you know what you business to start.
But, as soon as the idea pops into your head, the doubts come crushing in, too.
“Who do you think you are, Marie Forleo?”
“What if you fail and end up homeless?”
“Why would people buy from you?”
Self-doubt is paralyzing.
It cripples you with the worst case scenario that could happen if you take the leap.
It makes you believe you don’t have what it takes to make your dreams come true.
It fools you into thinking it’s keeping you safe. In reality, it just robs you of your dreams, of the life you know deep down you’re meant to be living.
Why Do You Experience Self-Doubt?
Self-doubt is one of the tricks your mind uses to keep you stuck in your comfort zone.
When you’re thinking about making a change or doing something new, like starting a business, your mind gets scared.
And so, it starts telling you all the way things could go wrong, so you won’t end up hurt or disappointed if things don’t work out.
Self-criticism and abuse is its way of keeping you safe. Because, deep down, there’s a part of you who doesn’t believe you deserve to have the business and life you’re dreaming of.
If you don’t believe you deserve something, you won’t go for it.
How Do You Develop Self-Doubt?
Have you ever watched a baby as she learns to walk?
She’s not afraid she’ll hurt herself if she falls down. She’s not wondering if she has what it takes to learn to walk. She’s not running worst case scenarios in her head.
She just stands up, takes a first step and off she goes. When she falls down, she gets up and does it all again. Before you know it, she starts running around the house.
There was never any doubt in her little mind that she could learn to walk.
Those doubts will come later. As that little girl grows up, she’ll pick up messages here and there that make her doubt her abilities and her self-worth.
Maybe she failed a couple of math tests and her teacher told her she’s no good with numbers. And now that she’s dreaming of starting her own business, her math phobia and fear of dealing with revenue/expenses spreadsheets is holding her back.
Maybe she had a crush on the cutest guy in her class and her friends told her she’s not pretty enough for him to notice her. Now she’s thinking of a starting a blog, but she’s afraid she won’t attract a following because of her looks.
Maybe she was so nervous when she gave her first presentation at her new job, she stumbled her way through her speech and her colleagues made fun of her. Now she believes there’s no point in becoming a public speaker – she’s not cut out for it.
Her lack of math skills, physical beauty and public speaking ability aren’t facts. They’re stories she made up about herself in her mind.
The same is true for you. You made up stories about yourself based on what happened to you in the past, the mistakes you made, and other people’s opinions of you.
As you grow up, these stories fuel your self-doubt and hold you back from fulfilling your life purpose and creating your multi-passionate business.
How To Overcome Self-Doubt And Move Forward With Your Life
You’re the writer of your own story. You get to decide who you want to be and what to do with your life.
Here’s what’s helped me rewrite my own story and overcome self-help doubt:
1. Tell Your Mind To Shut Up
Whenever your mind say something negative, tell her clearly, “No! No! No! We’re not going down this path again. I know you’re scared, but I’ve got this.”
Don’t wait until its whisper turns into a deafening tirade of your failures and inabilities (which are only in your head). Do it straight away, before it has the chance to make your thoughts spiral out of control.
Saying “NO!” disrupts your thought pattern and brings you back into the present moment.
2. Look At Your Past Successes
If telling your mind to stop doesn’t work (it’s ok, it takes practice), remind yourself of all the things you’ve accomplished in your life.
The good grades you got at school. The foreign language you’ve learned. Your skills at cooking/sewing/whatever. The job interviews you passed with flying colours. The friendships you’ve made.
Your mind has the annoying tendency to focus only on your past mistakes – and then blows them out of all proportions to scare you back into your comfort zone.
By reminding yourself of all the things you’ve accomplished in your life, you realise you’re capable of more than you give yourself credit for.
Go for it, gorgeous!
3. Stop Comparing Your Behind-The-Scenes To Everyone Else’s Highlight Reels
In the era of social media, it’s so easy to compare yourself to others and believe you don’t have what it takes to achieve their level of success.
Everyone’s raving about how many clients have signed up for their coaching programme, the exotic holiday they went on, and the freebies they’ve receiving from brands.
You? You’re struggling to get that first client, haven’t gone anywhere exotic ever, and have so few followers, no one is sending you anything.
It’s ok. The people you’re admiring were once where you are now. No one wakes up in the morning with a fully-booked coaching business. They build that slowly over the years. It’s just that you never get to see the gritty bits.
Remember that next time you’re comparing yourself to others. Everyone is on their own journey.
Focus on yourself and your own goals. You’ll get there.
Related: How To Deal With Comparisonitis
4. Make A Decision And Move Forward
I know it’s scary to make a decision without having everything figured out.
You want everything to be perfect. You want to make sure you’re making the right choice. You want the certainty of success.
Truth bomb: nothing is perfect, certain or guaranteed.
The only thing you can do is make a decision and move forward. If it’s not the right one, you can change it or course correct it in the future. Nothing is set in stone.
If you’re overwhelmed, start with baby steps. Ask yourself, what is the smallest action you can take today to move towards your goal?
For example, if you want to start a coaching business, you can simply call 3 friends and let them know you’re in business and accepting clients. Do they know everyone that could be interested?
Now do it.
5. Trust In Yourself
Did you notice we tend to trust everyone but ourselves?
You believe your teacher when he tells you you’re not good at math. You believe your friends when they tell you you’re not pretty enough. You believe your colleagues when they tell you you don’t have what it takes to quit your job and start your business.
What if you believed in yourself instead?
Truth bomb: if you didn’t have what it takes to make it come true, you won’t have that desire or dream in the first place.
Dreams and desires are the voice of your intuition. They show you what you’re meant to do with your life and point you in the right direction.
You have to trust your intuition. You have to believe you’re on the right path and that you’ll end up where you need to be – even if you don’t have a clue what you’re doing or how to make it happen.
You’ve got this.