Still figuring myself out, failing most of the time

Most of the time, it feels like I’m in an endless cycle of self-improvement and self-doubt. Like a sine wave.

When I’m on an upswing, I feel great about the things I’m working on, and make actual progress.

Then doubt creeps in, or I get overwhelmed and burned out, and I just want to stare at a wall. Generally at the bottom of this cycle I start to introspect what caused the downswing and how I can reduce the impact of these triggers in the future. I start making lists and journaling, and recycle all the approaches and mindsets that have helped in the past.

So, here’s just another listicle that I posted on Quora in answer to the question What’s the simplest way to understand myself?

Because I think about this stuff way more than I probably should.


Write down your fears. Write down your anxieties. Identify your triggers. Confront them. Own them. Bend them to your will. Turn them into strengths.

Write down your strengths. Play them up. Use them to get motivated when your fears and anxieties try to keep you down.

Talk to yourself. In your head. On paper. Out loud. Figure out how your brain works. How you process ideas.

Talk to other people. Your co-workers. Your family. Your friends. Listen to what they say. Write it down. Read it out loud. Talk to yourself about what they said. See how it fits into your worldview.

Talk to strangers. Analyze how this makes you feel. Do you feel this way because of your fears and anxieties? People don’t think half the things about you that you think they do. They have their own problems.

Try things. Things that make you uncomfortable. Things that are difficult. Things that make you think.

Fail. Turn that failure into a lesson. Become better for it.

Ignore everything I said. The only one who can discover how to understand you is yourself.

https://www.quora.com/Whats-the-simplest-way-to-understand-myself/answer/Matthew-Odle