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7 Powerful Points to Remember When You Feel Self-Doubt

7 Powerful Points to Remember When You Feel Self-Doubt

Self-doubt is something we all experience in life. Here are some things to remember when you find yourself wallowing in doubt.

1. Your failures and mistakes do not define you.

It is your potential, your will, and your actions to reach your potential that define you. If you try to measure yourself, or worse, to identify yourself with what you think were mistakes and failures, you will inevitably end up doubting your worth and your abilities. Know that mistakes and failures are valuable lessons in life which do not define who you are in any way. It is how you deal with them and learn from them have something to say about who you are.

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2. When in a moment of doubt, look for a moment of clarity.

We all have moments in life when we seriously doubt ourselves. These moments can be short or long, but they are always moments in time that will pass if we open up to see beyond the moment. When in self-doubt, what we should be looking for is the exact opposite: a moment of clarity where we see all of our life issues, doubts, and fears from a wider angle and unchained from the particular time we are experiencing. In short, a “moment of clarity” should really be called “clarity beyond the moment.”

3. Self-doubt always comes from fear, insecurity, and inner disconnection.

Evaluating your strengths and weaknesses is a healthy part of inner self re-assessment. However, self-doubt is always an illusion. Why? Because it comes from fear and from being disconnected from your true inner self. Self-doubt is only a projection of your fears which can be dissolved by reconnecting to the intuitions of the heart rather than being trapped in thoughts and minds.

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4. The strongest remedy for self-doubt is self-love.

By far, the strongest, fastest vanquisher of self-doubt is self-love. Remembering to be gentle, kind, and loving towards yourself will dissolve and melt the harsh self-criticism which inevitably leads to self-doubt. Don’t be hard on yourself — there is never any good reason to be so. Loving oneself is not narcissistic — it is the basis for opening oneself up to life and others without falling into the limiting machinations of the mind.

5. You are not isolated.

One of the main effects of self-doubt is isolation. When we doubt our worth or value, it is because we first isolate ourself from the whole complete picture of our life. We isolate ourself from others and from ourself, from our beauty, successes, strengths, inner truths, and our real value and true authenticity. In fact, self-doubt is very selective — the ego mischievously focuses and highlights only the faults and fears in isolation without connecting them to all the positive truths about yourself. So when in doubt, remember you are never isolated but connected to a larger whole and a larger set of experiences that shape you.

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6. You don’t need confirmation or approval from others.

When we doubt ourself, we lose our points of reference. In that moment of weakness, we look even more for others’ approval and confirmation — which makes us even weaker and subject to more doubt.

Others have no say or authority over who you are and your true value. Only you do. The confirmation that you are a free, powerful, and beautiful being should come from your inner conviction — from your heart and not from anywhere else.

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7. Listen to your heart.

This is where real strength, power, and wisdom comes from. Doubt comes when we are tumbled into the battle between mind and heart and this mostly happens when we mute our heart or we lose touch with it. Reconnecting and listening to your heart is not an action you need to learn to do. It’s about silence, surrender, and trust. In short, sitting quietly and allowing. Meditation, reflection, contemplation, and spiritual retreats are all proven and tested paths for quietening the mind and deepening into the heart.

Featured photo credit: Kyle Broad via images.unsplash.com

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The Gentle Art of Saying No

The Gentle Art of Saying No

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

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But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

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What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

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But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here are the Top 10 tips for learning the Gentle Art of Saying No:

  1. Value your time. Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”
  2. Know your priorities. Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time? For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.
  3. Practice saying no. Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.
  4. Don’t apologize. A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.
  5. Stop being nice. Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets. Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.
  6. Say no to your boss. Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning. But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.
  7. Pre-empting. It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting, “Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”
  8. Get back to you. Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them: “After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.” At least you gave it some consideration.
  9. Maybe later. If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say, “This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].” Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.
  10. It’s not you, it’s me. This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time. Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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