Over the last year I’ve found myself stuck in a cycle of self-doubt where I have continuously questioned my ability. second-guessed myself and even felt like an imposter at times. Raise your hand if you have felt this way recently too. Sometimes the thought alone can be heavy and constricting, it can leave me feeling unfocused and act as a distraction hindering my progress to reach certain goals. Self-doubt and imposter syndrome is something that many of us have felt and will feel multiple times in our lives unfortunately…overcoming is easier said than done but it is possible.
Back when I first started my fitness journey in 2013, I was full of doubt. I didn’t think that I belonged in the gym or even in that atmosphere because I had no idea what I was doing, but I kept on going. After a few weeks of seeing progress, I grew a little more confident in myself, I saw progress and got comfortable being in that atmosphere. As I got ready to move to the next level, self-doubt started to creep in and I felt like I was back at step one. The same thing happens over and over again in other areas of my life and I have to affirm to myself not to doubt myself or my capabilities. Over the years, I realised that when I second guess myself or feel like an imposter at times, I am too focused on this psychological fear that I am not good enough…when in fact, I am more than good enough and a work in progress. It can be easy to let the fear of not knowing what you are doing take over your ability of pushing yourself to see what you are capable of. Here are four ways that to help you overcome self-doubt & imposter syndrome.
Silence Your Inner Critic
Learning to silence that voice in my head has been one of the greatest tools as well as shutting the voices of others that can plant the seed of doubt. We all have doubts and rather than wasting that energy, learn to recognise that it exists. Take that time to be present in the moment and ask yourself what is stopping you from taking the leap. Something that I like to do is give myself a pep talk or physically shake off the negative energy that comes with the feeling of self-doubt. Remember that the will to succeed comes from within you. When you can see an opportunity with confidence, you are most likely going to spend more time getting excited about this new chapter than spend time convincing yourself not to. Don’t allow those seeds to take root and grow. Show yourself that you are more than capable of doing what you intended to do. Give it your all, the time and the talent. The worst thing that can happen is that you end up spending more time practicing until you feel more comfortable with it. We are all a work in progress. The more we practice, the easier it gets. The easier it gets, the better we become.
Set Goals & Release Your Expectations
It’s important to set the bar high but not too high that we create disappointments through our own expectations. Releasing our expectations does not mean that we are letting go of the vision, it means that we are letting go of being too hard on ourselves. Everyone starts out as a beginner on the first day. No one comes in as an expert when they first start either, so give yourself grace as you work towards your goals. You will encounter defeat at times but make sure that you don’t let it defeat you.
The key to any personal success is to set both big and small goals, long-term and short-term goals while we celebrate the tiny victories in between. It is so much easier for self-doubt to creep in when our bigger goals are not reached immediately. By setting small and big goals, we are teaching yourselves that our work and our lives have meaning. At each stage, spend a gratitude moment to celebrate all the little steps you took to reach that goal as those small steps will add up to your bigger goals. Never downplay your achievements but glow in them as they will keep your self-confidence up and reassure you that you are making progress.
Face Your Fears
Face your fears sis. I am saying this to myself too. The more that we push ourseleves, the more we realise that we are more capable that we imagined. It all comes from believing in our own power. Everyone has fears. There are people out there who have succeed in their craft because they didn’t let self-doubt and imposter syndrome stop them from executing their dreams. You may not be able to do something today but that doesn’t mean that you will not be able to do it tomorrow or next week. With hard work, dedication and time, you will get there. If they can do it, we can do it. If we can do it, you most certainly can do it. I have this fear of taking solo pictures in public and showing up the way I want because I worry, at times, what other people think. I have to constantly remind myself that only my opinion matters and what I do should not be influenced by the thoughts of others. Everyone is on his or her journey and this is where my journey has taken me. Remember that some people never try to execute their ideas because they are scared of failing and not doing it perfectly. Perfect don’t exist and that’s not the way to live life. Progression exists.
Commit & Remember What You Have Overcome
Be committed. For me, it’s either 100% in and 100% out. There is no halfway point and there shouldn’t be one for you either, physically and mentally. When you know that you are committed to a goal and to yourself, you will do whatever it takes to improve that skill despite the fear and the self-doubt. I did it when I started my fitness journey and I’m pushing myself to that same level of commitment for my other goals. Don’t focus on the fear and doubts, but fall in love with the process and the potential of making that goal your priority. Stop accepting and making excuses for your inability to reach your desired outcome but make it happen. Silence your inner critic, give yourself grace, release any expectations and face your fears. Be committed to being better than you were yesterday with better actions, decisions and be resilient. Be relentless and challenge yourself to overcome those doubts. You have the power to create your future and not let your past determine the outcome. Your future is still unwritten and you are holding the pen. Stay loyal and committed to your journey, don’t rush it but keep taking one step forward each day.
Everyone has self-doubts and moments of imposter syndrome but it is dependent on how we refram our thoughts and doubts. Today is the day that you stop second-guessing your abilities and get over yourself. What will hold you back is not what you are but what you think you aren’t. I can already tell you sis that you are everything even if you think you can’t see it yet. Believe in yourself, ink up that pen and watch your story unfold.
Until next time,