Everyone has experienced feelings of uncertainty towards something and it’s very normal to experience feelings of doubt when we're faced with new or challenging situations. Self-doubt can have a significant negative effect on someone’s self-esteem. However, there're ways to combat these feelings and become more confident in yourself and your abilities.
As an entrepreneur, you've probably experienced various obstacles which have triggered some self-doubt within yourself. With that said, it's important to not let those negative perceptions and fears get the best of you.
Below are 5 ways of overcoming self-doubt.
1. Celebrate your small wins
Instead of focusing on negatives and failures, reflect on what went right and any achievements you have. Look at each accomplishment being another step along the path toward reaching bigger goals. Give yourself full credit for your triumphs. Enjoy your small and big wins.
Reflect on your progress so far and acknowledge that you aren't where you were one week ago, one month ago, or one year ago. Whenever you lose confidence in your abilities, look critically at what you’ve achieved so far, reflect on your progress and acknowledge all the people that have helped you throughout your journey.
"Always keep in mind that each positive accomplishment is another step towards your long-term objectives and should be celebrated."
So go ahead and lift your hands high up and dance to that celebratory tune.
2. Stay away from negative people
A man or woman is known by the company he or she keeps, and it’s even more true for entrepreneurs. Surround yourself with people who have positive outlooks toward life and will encourage you to continue your venture.
Sometimes who you're surrounded with can contribute to how you feel about yourself, and this can affect your confidence. Become more aware of who surrounds you and interacts with you.
Keep the people who encourage you close and seek out their feedback regularly, as you distance yourself from people who are always pessimistic towards you, your business, or your prospects. Be cautious when dealing with customers who have negative energy - let it not rub on you.
3. Associate yourself with like-minded entrepreneurs
Share your ups and downs with entrepreneurs who will advise and encourage you when you're down. If possible, get entrepreneurs who have been in the business longer than you. It's healthy to blow off steam with like-minded people once in a while.
By engaging with like-minded professionals, you may learn from them tips on how to overcome self-doubt at a much faster rate than you would learn on your own. One important aspect of connecting with other like-minded business professionals is the element of positivity which is a must for every business person.
4. Do not compare yourself
If you constantly compare your level of success to other big players, you'll get discouraged quickly. Everyone wears shoes that perfectly fit them, and you may not know the hell that the other players went through to be where they are.
When you spend all your time and energy trying to manage other peoples’ perceptions of you, you'll get stuck in an inadequacy loop. Theodore Roosevelt was right by saying comparison is the thief of joy - when you compare yourself to others, you are bound to feel inadequate. It’s the unfair comparisons to the unattainable that lower our self-esteem.
Having self-compassion simply means being warm and understanding towards yourself when you suffer, fail, or feel inadequate. Research has shown that those who practice self-forgiveness have better mental and emotional well-being and more positive attitudes. A related outcome ties self-compassion with higher levels of success, productivity, focus, and concentration.
As an entrepreneur, if you dwell on the negatives and beat yourself up for doubting, all you’ll do is waste time and feel bad, instead of concentrating on what's important, which is building your business. Given how many situations entrepreneurs face, and the decisions they make daily, they may feel self-doubt a little more.
In conclusion, recognize that every entrepreneur who succeeded had the same doubts, failed more than once, and kept going anyway.
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