How to Stop Doubting Yourself and Start Being Your Own Biggest Fan
Last year, Snoop Dogg thanked himself in his Hollywood Star acceptance speech. He credited himself for all the hard work, for believing in himself, and for achieving the level of success he had achieved.
Why can’t we all have that same level of respect and admiration of ourselves?
Most of us believe we are capable of greatness, but there’s those nagging insecurities that make us feel that maybe we aren’t quite good enough.
What would happen if you removed self doubt and instead started being your biggest cheerleader?
When we focus on our shortcomings and fears, we’ll inevitably start doubting our abilities. But don’t worry- it’s easy to switch gears.
Here are 7 simple ways to start being captain of your own fan club:
Focus on Your Strengths
You know what they are. And you know what they aren’t. So play up your strengths and play down your weaknesses. You might not be able to change the oil in your car, but if you’re the #1 person your family comes to for tech help, then that’s valuable. Everyone has gifts and talents, and until you start focusing on yours, you’ll always feel inferior to others. Know your greatness.
“Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid”
Stop Looking for Society’s Approval
No person in the world is going to validate you more than yourself. If Bill Gates told you that you were a genius, would you believe him? Probably not, unless you actually believed it yourself.
So don’t wait for your boss to acknowledge the fact that you are a valuable asset to the team- believe that you are. Don’t expect someone to sing your praises if you aren’t already singing them yourself. If you think that someone has to tell you that you are doing the right thing, then you will constantly doubt your progress.
Don’t look for exterior validation- it has to start with you.
“Whether you believe you can do a thing or not, you are right.”
— Henry Ford
Highlight your Key Assets
Get in alignment with your best skills and talents and make them a priority in your life. When we focus our attention on doing things that come easy to us, we increase our feelings of self-worth, and that gives us an empowering sense of accomplishment.
A simple yet powerful way to do this is a fun exercise I recently did. Start by making a list of what you believe your greatest strengths are. These can be anything- cooking, organizing, making people laugh, or anything you excel at. Write them all down.
Then, ask 3 of the closest people in your life to make a list of what they believe your greatest strengths are. Compare the lists and hone in on what stands out. Keep the list handy and read it every so often to remind yourself of your talents and abilities.
Extra credit: Write a list of strengths for any or all the people who did so for you and send it to them. Everybody loves to be reminded of what they are good at, so it will be inspiring and motivating for the receiver. It will also put a few chips in your karma bank.
Stop Shaming Yourself for Failures and Mistakes- Instead, Embrace Them
We all have a past, and most of them are peppered with regrets and mistakes that we aren’t proud of. But our future does not rely on what we’ve done in the past- it relies on what we do today. Instead of holding guilt or shame for past failures, embrace the fact that you had the experience.
Most importantly, be grateful for the lessons you’ve learned along your journey. Consider your mistakes the cement that built the foundation you stand on today- as a stronger, wiser, more experienced version of yourself.
Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
We are constantly bombarded with media and advertising that highlights spectacular people and their successful lives. Everywhere we look we see the newest self-made millionaire, the Instagram star’s perfect bikini body or another impressive rags to riches story.
Although some positive comes from these inspiring stories, what often happens is we start to put so much admiration into others’ value that we inadvertently start to diminish our own.
You are your own unique person with gifts and talents that can make an incredible impact on the world, and nobody can take that away from you. It is okay to envy others, but only if it pushes you forward in your progress.
“In a world where you can be anything, be yourself”
Ignore the Naysayers
Negative people will always be there. Whether it’s a co-worker who points out your small missteps or internet trolls with nothing but terrible things to say, you will hear them. But you don’t have to listen. Family and friends can also be critical and unfortunately, this will often keep us in a limited mindset.
The opinions of the people in your life are important, but you also have to consider the source.
Are you taking relationship advice from someone who is unhappy in their marriage? Or career advice from someone who has not achieved success in their respective field on the level that you aspire to in yours?
People will always be quick to pass judgment and point out the negative, but you can let it serve as motivation. Try to only take advice and constructive criticism from those one step ahead of you. You may have to walk alone for a while. Remember what they say- if you don’t have any haters, you aren’t doing enough.
Celebrate All Wins
Too often we tend to zero in on our shortcomings and what we didn’t achieve instead of applauding ourselves for what we did. Consciously recognize how often you are patting yourself on the back versus how often you are criticizing yourself.
It’s important to do self-evaluation and measure our results, but we need to balance that with rewards for all our accomplishments. No matter how small your victory, acknowledge it. If you set out to achieve a goal and only reach the halfway mark, that is still an achievement.
Be proud of yourself, even if you did 5 push-ups when you set out to do 15. Because you did something, and that’s better than nothing.
“You don’t have to be great to get started, but you have to get started to be great.” -Zig Ziglar
Why Not Make the Switch?
What would happen if you removed all of the negative self-talk from your internal dialog? What if you praised yourself for all of the obstacles you have overcome? How about being proud of the even the smallest win today?
I guarantee your mentality and confidence would skyrocket.
You have an opportunity every day to be a better version of yourself. Start by recognizing all you have to offer, and focusing on your strengths. You can achieve greatness, and when you do- remember to give a big thank you to yourself during your acceptance speech.