We are talking self doubt strategies, how to think about self doubt differently so that it no longer holds you back from being the fullest expression of yourself, from doing those things that you want to do in your business, in your life, from really showing up in the world in an impactful way.
Full Episode Transcript
Hello my friends. We are on episode four and this week we are talking self doubt strategies, how to think about self doubt differently so that it no longer holds you back from being the fullest expression of yourself, from doing those things that you wanna do in your business, in your life, from really showing up in the world in an impactful way.
Kia ora I’m Meegan Care mindset coach and meditation teacher. This podcast is here to help you unwind self-doubt, people pleasing, imposter syndrome, and overwhelm so you can step into the confident leader you were born to. Women, it is time to bring your purpose into the world in an impactful way without sacrificing your wellbeing.
Are you ready? Let’s begin. Self doubt is about a lack of confidence in yourself or your abilities. It’s a sense of uncertainty of your capacity, your worth, or other aspects of yourself, and it’s often the biggest reason women cite for being stuck for not moving forward. Self doubt arises for almost everyone, almost everyone, and I’m gonna give you some tips. I think there’s five of them, to help you break free from self doubt, to stop it from holding you back, because it’s a really big issue for small business owners, for practitioners, for women with a purpose. So I’m gonna help you with that today.
I’ve experienced a lot of self-doubt in my life, and it’s only in recent years now I feel like I’ve got a handle on it and I feel like it no longer holds me back, and it’s now more in the background rather than being in the foreground and preventing me from showing up in the way that I wanna show.
So very much now for me, feels like it’s in the background. It shows up from time to time, but I can really check it and turn the volume down on it. So I wanna share some of the, some of the perspectives and the tools that I use have used to help me do that. And it’s an ongoing journey, right? So I think if you’re sensitive, you’re intuitive, you’re intelligent, you’re emotionally empathic, self doubt’s gonna show up because you can really read the room, and so it becomes about reading the room, understanding what’s happening around us, in our community, with people around us, without taking that on. As meaning something about ourselves. So that’s a really, really key thing when we are speaking in front of a group. So particularly for women, and the more sensitive you are, the more you’ll notice this is that when you, you look around the room, maybe you’re presenting right to a group, and this has happened to me numerous times.
And you look around the room and you see the faces. Looking back at you. And somebody might have an expression on their face , they might be looking away. You might catch a certain expression that you deem as an eye roll or a bored look, or an angry look. And when we are sensitive, when we are emotionally empathic, our default is to make that mean something about ourselves.
But 99% of the time. It doesn’t mean anything about ourselves, and I’ll go so far as to say a hundred percent of the time, it doesn’t mean anything about you. Because even if that person is thinking something about you, that’s their stuff, that’s their perspective. That’s maybe something you’ve said has triggered something inside of them.
It just doesn’t mean anything about you. But the more sensitive we are, the more emotionally empathic we are. The more we take that on as being, oh, that is about me. And so then what happens? Our self doubt arises in the moment. You know, this is is an example of how self doubt arises when we are stepping up and stepping out of our comfort zone.
So the way I’ve learned to work with self doubt has really helped me to put all of that experience, put that experience in its place that person’s expression. Stays with them. That’s their stuff. I don’t actually know what’s going on for them, and this is what I tell myself, and I don’t need to know what’s going on for them in the moment.
If I have a room of 20 people and someone’s had a bad day, they might be exhausted. They might have something going on really personal that they’re really angry and frustrated about, well, that’s gonna give them an angry and frustrated expression if I take that expression as meaning something about me or about my delivery.
What’s that gonna do? That’s gonna introduce a whole lot of self-doubt for me in the moment. And so then I have to work really hard to manage that, to overcome that. Because I’m not going to take on the expressions as meaning something about me, because I’m probably down that spectrum of being overly empathic and overly able to read people’s expressions.
That’s a really good brake for me, and so that might be something that’s really useful to you. Coming back to what I had originally planned to talk about, that was a riff that for me is where self doubt used to show up significantly when I was speaking to a group. But generally speaking, self doubt becomes more of a problem when we believe the thoughts that are showing up in our brain, the self doubt narration, which, you know, I’ve just spoken to a situation where in the past I would have had quite a lot of inner narration around that. I would’ve had the feelings that doubt triggers inside me would’ve been activated and I would’ve had to work quite hard to stay grounded, to stay present in what I was saying and to put that off to the side.
So self doubt is only a problem when we believe the thoughts that show up around it, and then when we let those thoughts stop us from taking action.
The problem arises when you let self doubt stop you from doing that thing, launching your next offer, opening that business that you want to open, taking that next step, reaching out to that person that you really wanna connect with. And just, now, I talked about an example of. It’s a bit of a hot seat situation where you’re in the moment, you’re speaking to a group, and self-doubt arises, but self-doubt also interrupts our planning stages, our moving forward stages, and can often mean that we get caught in spinning our wheels and stuck in planning. So when there’s unconscious self-doubt arising, if you are always planning, if you’re not actually taking that action in your business, for your business, for your project, and you keep coming back to needing to plan, needing to do a lot of work on paper, then you might wanna check in with yourself.
Is there some self doubt arising here? And for some people there’s a more or less subconscious pattern of self doubt. That means that they just don’t dream outside of their comfort zone, means that they settle for how things are. Life isn’t too terrible. I don’t know what I want to bring in the world. I don’t know what I want to bring into the world.
I don’t have a passion. It’s difficult to feel the joy and the drive that our purpose gives us when there’s a layer of self doubt there.
Or in your life, your business, you might have a sense of what you want to put out into the world , but you know really clearly that self doubt is holding you back, that it is the number one thing that is stopping you from moving forward. So if that’s the case for you, if self doubt is holding you back, I want you to get really clear on what the thoughts are behind it.
So what you name is self doubt. All of our experiences are gonna be unique. The thoughts and feelings that make up self doubt for all of us is gonna be uniquely ours. It’s gonna have our own nuance to it. So for you, check in with yourself. Ask yourself, what are the thoughts and feelings that make this up for me?
What are the actual words? That are arising in my brain when I’m sensing self doubt as present and see if you can catch them as they arise and write them down. It takes a little bit of slowing down and a little bit of awareness to do this, but we can all do it. We can all do it. We just need to bring a bit of gentle awareness to it because we’ve become so used to self doubt being there that we just expect, and so we don’t challenge the thoughts that make it up. Ask the question, is this thought I have about myself or how I’m going to be received? Is this actually really, really true? Has it been true a hundred percent of the time that I’ve shown up? And our brains are very sneaky because your brain might say, yes, it is.
It’s absolutely true. Every time you’ve shown up, you’ve been embarrassed. You haven’t done it right. You’ve fallen over your feet because our brain is like a heat seeking missile, right? It’s looking for the places where you’ve fallen over. And it will ignore the places where we’ve had success. Yeah. So that idea of our brain being Teflon for the positives, they just slide right off.
And being Velcro for the negatives, it grabs all of those events that were negative, that were embarrassing, that you know, you feel like you didn’t do a good job, your brain’s gonna hold onto those. Cause that’s just what our brain does. We don’t make that a problem. We just understand that that’s what our brain does and don’t make too much meaning out of it.
And so when you are tracking with self doubt, so we’re getting clear on the thoughts that make it up, and then when you notice the thoughts are there, feel the feelings that go along with it, what are you feeling inside your body? Identify them and allow yourself to feel them in the moment. And you can even place your hand on your body where they arise.
For me, it can often be if I’m triggered in the moment, so that example I was talking about speaking in front of a group. If I’m triggered in the moment, it can be like a sensation of a bit of a. Dropping away just underneath my, where my heart area is, but sort of a little bit lower and it sort of drops away a little bit inside my body.
And then my nervous system sort of just very slightly now speeds up. So you could, when you’re unwinding this, When you’re by yourself, you’re taking that time to be with it. You can place your hand on your body where they arise and really feel that sensation and breathe into that space. And just for now, don’t try to make them go away.
Don’t try to make the feelings go away. Just allow them to be here for the moment and bring some kindness to. Because we all experience self doubt at some points on our journey. It’s actually a beautiful signal that you’re expanding, that you are growing, that you’re stepping out of your comfort zone.
And self-doubt is not actually a problem if we don’t let it mean anything has gone wrong. And if we don’t make it mean that we should stop doing what we are doing or what we are thinking of doing or change direction. So don’t make self doubt a problem. Tip number 2.
Know that every new thing that you do, self-doubt may well be along for the ride.
And that actually that’s okay. So we’re no longer making self-doubt a problem, right? We know it’s part of the journey. We’re not gonna give it a massive amount of attention. Oh, self doubt’s here. Yep. I’m stepping outta my comfort zone. Hey mate, you are here. I don’t know. Is it just me? I’m sure it’s not just me.
I do this in a talk with inside myself and I find it really helpful. Self doubts here. Hey mate, you’re here. You’re along for the ride. Nice one. Not gonna pay too much attention to you. I’m still doing it. So that’s a form of self talk that like softens what’s happening in our nervous system and slows things down so we can be more present for the process.
And tip number three, really key in today’s social media world. So we live in a world obviously where social media is really prevalent. It’s everywhere. I enjoy many aspects of social media. It’s connected me with people that I wouldn’t ordinarily have connected with and I really appreciate those aspects of it. And I also am, as we all are, really aware of all the toxic elements of it as well.
And it, what it can do is create a lot of unhelpful comparison for us when we see someone’s perfect curated social media feed and we automatically compare ourselves to that, how we perceive ourselves, how we look, how we’re showing up in our lives. We don’t see people’s shit days very often on social media, hardly ever.
So it’s really helpful to reduce the opportunities that your brain has for unhelpful comparison. So that means how we spend our time on social media. So listen, if you are following accounts and they are causing you to unhelpfully, compare yourself in a, in an unfavorable way, in a way that does not make you feel good.
Then you need to unfollow those accounts. You don’t need them in your life. You don’t need them in your world, and it might be that you unfollow them or you mute them. If there’s somebody that you know and, and that’s causing that feeling inside of you because that happens too, then you can just mute the account.
We don’t have to be exposing ourselves to that unhelpful comparison time and time and time again that just gives rise to so much self doubt. You can even take an extended social media break for a couple of days and just notice what happens to the self doubt patterns within you.
Do they slow down? Does the volume go down on them? Notice those thoughts of perfectionism ’cause they’re gonna arise through that unhelpful comparison. And know within yourself that those unhelpful thoughts of perfectionism need to be gone. Get them gone, banish them. Don’t let yourself fall into them. That is just not helpful.
That is not going to help you to grow.
Another thing that you can do is think about yourself as that person that sticks to your plan. Be the person that follows through on your commitment to yourself. Even when self-doubt arises because it will arise. If you are doing something, that means that you are growing outside of your comfort zone.
You’re evolving. Say your business is growing or evolving, you’re making a new offer. Self-doubt is going to arise. But if you’ve done the work, the mindset work ahead of time, and you are aware that. yep, so I’m doing this new thing. Self doubt’s gonna arise most likely. And for women that I’m working with, with coaching, so we often have this idea, it’s inspiring, it’s exciting, it’s just filling us with purpose.
And so we start to launch that. We go through the steps to launch it. We bring it out into the world and hello, self doubt. Here you are. It always arises. Especially when this thing is a new thing, you might need to be showing up in a new way. Self doubt will arise. Know that that’s gonna happen. If you know that that’s gonna happen ahead of time, then you can already have made a commitment to yourself that, yeah, I know self doubt’s gonna arise.
I might go through a period when I am launching this offer or this business when I’m gonna really doubt. I’m gonna think that this offer is shit that no one’s gonna want it, that I’m making a fool of myself. All of those thoughts, and I’m just not gonna believe them.
That is gonna give you so much power through your process. Of bringing your business into the world of bringing your offer into the world of living a life that you want to live.
So this one’s really key for me, either up to number four or number five. Give yourself permission to reject unsolicited feedback.
You don’t need to receive unsolicited feedback. You don’t need to take it on board. You don’t need to think about it. You don’t need to do anything with it at all. Particularly the unsolicited kind. And also don’t take feedback from people that you don’t like, that you don’t respect, that don’t have any expertise in the area that they’re offering you feedback on.
Just amazes me how often this happens and they have a choice that they wanna share that with you. Okay, that’s fine. But your choice, and this is somewhat around unwinding, people pleasing as well. Your choice in that moment is to say no to that feedback when you set something new out into the world.
People like to offer their feedback. Good, bad, good with a little stab underneath. There’s a lot that goes on, right? You don’t have to take on any of it. You don’t have to think deeply about any of it, and you definitely don’t have to let it derail you. It’s just not useful. I’m not going to take feedback from so and so who is no expert in marketing and doesn’t know me, doesn’t know my business.
I’m not gonna take their feedback on what I put out into the world in terms of my marketing. That’s just not helpful. All that does is brings up self doubt, throws me off track because we know, I’m not for everyone. Whatever it is that you are offering in your business or your therapeutic practice is not for everyone.
You’re gonna be for a certain person, and you need to be able to be relaxed within yourself and speak to that person through your marketing, through your offers in a really clear, confident way. And so some random person’s feedback on your picture, your words, how you’re showing up, whatever, whatever. Just no thanks. No thank you.
Okay, so. Next point, totally lost track of numbers. Might be six. Now, understand that self-doubt, as I’ve said before, will come up every time you step outside of your comfort zone. Expect it. Welcome it. Dare I say, ask for more. Come on, bring me more. So that’s actually a really helpful way of riding that wave when it comes up. I’ve taken that from working with anxiety and feelings of panic. There’s a body of work around, so you welcome it. You ask for more. You ride the wave. I’m summarizing, of course, so we can apply this to self doubt. Self doubt arises. You have the feeling, you notice the feeling.
You welcome it. Here you are. Okay. Got ya. Ask for more is there more? Bring me more. Come on, let’s go. So you’re not resisting it because when you resist it, you create tension inside your system. And tension inside your system will increase the intensity of the self-doubt that is present. So if you ask for more, what you’re actually doing is relaxing into it.
You are letting it be just as it is. It’s part of a mindfulness practice around it. You ride that wave and because there are feelings accompanying these thoughts and this state of being, that wave will pass. And once that wave has passed, or even if it’s lowered in it’s intensity you carry on, you carry on with your actions.
So the creative process will always have these waves of self-doubt within them. This is your brain’s protective mechanism. and when this happens, cuz your brain is trying to keep you safe, right? Anything, anytime we step outside of our comfort zone, our brain is like, oh, no, no, no, not safe. That ancient part of our brain, back, back, back into the cave back where, you know, everything is, is familiar.
So we just start to recognize this is my brain trying to protect me, but it is not a signal to stop what I’m doing. It is not a signal to stop moving forward with my project, with my offer. So this is really what, to me anyway, dictates the difference between success and failure.
So to me, success is not letting self doubt stop me from moving forward, not letting self doubt limit your actions or limit how much you are stepping forward in your life and your business. And success is not believing Every single thing your brain tells you.
Be kind to yourself when self doubt arises, allow that wave to ride through because it will have a beginning, a middle, and an end for sure. And when we can let that wave ride through, we’ve already set in place what I talked about in the previous points around a commitment to yourself that you are not gonna let self doubt stop you.
It is not a red light for action taking. It’s just a sign that you have got your foot on the accelerator that you’re moving forward. And that you are brave, you are courageous, you are feeling the feelings that go along with this, and you are not letting it stop you. That, to me is success. And the thing is, in terms of our business or how we show up in our profession, we can have all the strategy in the world.
We can have the best strategy that is on offer, but if we don’t have the mindset, if we don’t have the commitment to ourself, if we are not working on our thoughts and feelings and creating an intentional mindset, then that strategy, the things that we do, are not gonna be effective. You’re not gonna reach the people that you wanna reach because mindset is like three quarters of the deal.
Your mindset is that magnetic, attractive quality, that piece that you can’t really put your finger on, but you just know that you have to work with that person or say yes to that project, it’s because it’s a match for you energetically. So when we work on our mindset, it means it does all the heavy lifting for the actions that we do take, and they partner together in a really powerful way.
So you are making a greater, more joyful. More life changing impact in your business and in your world.
So we are no longer beholden to self doubt. It can be there if it wants to be, but we are stepping forward anyway. Yep. You with me? Hey, thanks for joining me on the podcast. I hope you found this one useful. All around self doubt. Let’s put it in its place. Let’s no longer be beholden to self doubt. It’s not gonna hold you back anymore.
Use these tips and strategies and put self doubt where it needs to be right in the background. Have an amazing week, my friends. I’ll talk to you real soon.