Being Productive When Self Doubt Sneaks Up on You
It’s hard enough working against the clock when you’re trying to successfully build your business online. But throw in a hefty dose of self doubt and it’s almost crippling how much it can stall your productivity.
You probably mistakenly believe that not everyone suffers from self doubt – that the successful men and women have somehow conquered it and ooze sheer confidence on a daily basis.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
The actual truth is – they simply learned to plow through it. They work in spite of self doubt. This usually comes with practice, and isn’t something you enjoy overnight. The good news is – the self doubt dwindles from a loud, screaming roar in your mind to a faint whisper you can easily tune out.
Becoming Aware of Your Self Doubt
The first thing you have to do is become aware. Now, you might be saying, “I’m well aware of this,??? but is that only when you’re looking at the big picture of how you haven’t succeeded yet?
Are you aware at the exact moment that self doubt begins undermining your authority and telling you you’re not goof enough to accomplish your goals? Most people aren’t tuned in during those moments – they’re simply mesmerized by their mind’s false message.
Your self doubt mindset really doesn’t have bad intentions. You think you’re trying to sabotage yourself, but you’re not. The reality is – you’re trying to protect yourself. Only, it backfires unfortunately, leaving you hopeless and hesitant to go forward with your plans.
What makes it worse is, kind of how stress floods your body with the hormone cortisol, whenever self doubt creeps in, your mind is flooded with horrible emotions like panic and guilt.
It’s like pouring salt on a wound. Not only did you manage to talk yourself out of productivity, but now you’re ridiculing yourself for making that move in the first place! The only true way to solve this problem is to face it head on and get out from under the rule of a self sabotaging mindset.
This isn’t something a book can do for you – or a calming, scented candle. It has to come from within. But there are some tools you can use to help you conquer it, if you’re willing to try.
Look for Truth in the Message
The fact is, sometimes your self doubt is right. It’s not always just your mind toying with you. Sometimes, your gut instinct not to do something is a warning you should heed. But there’s a difference between your mind saying, “You shouldn’t try to create these graphics yourself because your designs stink,??? and it telling you, “You’d save time and frustration saving up to outsource this part of your product.???
You have to think like a business owner. If you analyze other designs in the marketplace and feel yours can compete, go for it. If your skills fall short (don’t be afraid to ask people for their honest opinion), then listen to your self doubt.
However, if you notice your mind is constantly telling you you’re not enough of an expert, your appearance isn’t good enough, you’re too stupid or too shy or too newbie to do something – it’s probably a sign that there’s no truth to it.
This can stem from other areas of your life where you felt inadequate – a bad childhood or marriage, for example. Maybe you had a previous boss who made your life insufferable by putting down your efforts.
That doesn’t mean it was true.
You decide what’s true for you now – you have to take back that power and make a decision on what ‘s going to happen from this point on. Sometimes, when you hear yourself mired in self doubt, it’s a result of sheer ignorance – you’re simply uninformed about the truth.
When you’re new to being an entrepreneur, there’s a lot to learn. You can sit there telling yourself you’re not enough of an expert to lead a niche yet, but it’s only because you’re uninformed about the fact that people love seeing a person’s journey from start to finish – and they will follow someone who isn’t yet an expert.
Because it’s comfortable to them. They’re on the same level and you’re leading the way. They don’t have to be intimidated by the person leading them and they’ll form an even stronger bond with you because you’re in their shoes and they appreciate you putting yourself out there.
But your mind wouldn’t tell you that. It simply says, “No, you can’t go into that niche because there are so many other, competent and successful niche leaders.??? It’s a lie built on ignorance.
Prove Yourself Wrong
Nobody can tell you that you’re good enough, smart enough or capable enough to accomplish everything you need to get done. Only you will be effective at influencing yourself.
So the best thing you can do from here on out is get sick of yourself. Get sick of your excuses. Get tired of the whining. Roll your eyes whenever you start complaining. Get angry!
It’s refreshing to get to a point where you no longer put up with your own excuses. You have to become a brat and refuse to listen to your mindset that says it’s in control and you’re not.
Every single time you wake up and take action, you prove yourself wrong. You prove to that mindset that what they said was a flat out lie. If your mind says you can’t think of a good enough domain, you sit your butt down in that chair and brainstorm until you do.
This is true regarding every element of your success. If you tell yourself you’re too tired to work, or you don’t feel well, do something anyway. It can be a little something – but something to show yourself that you are capable – even if your eyes want to close or you feel a bit under the weather.
Over time, whenever your mindset tries declaring that you’re incapable of being productive in that moment, you won’t even have to think about it. You’ll simply get to work – and little by little, that voice won’t even try to go there again.
It will become routine for you to be productive. Many successful entrepreneurs work 365 days a year. That sounds grueling, doesn’t it? But truthfully, some of them might pop in and check emails or something very minor – and then enjoy the rest of their day.
They’ve produced a habit of showing up and being productive every single day, and it shows in the statistics of their earnings reports. Effort put in equals monetary rewards. When you stall out, you get nowhere.
Take each lie you tell yourself – you don’t have time, you don’t have money, you don’t have enough knowledge to lead your niche – and prove them false one by one. You don’t have to achieve some major goal of reaching the pinnacle of your success in one week – or even one month.
Just make progress through productivity and when and if a sliver of self doubt shows up, just tell yourself, “I’ll show you!??? Every day you show up and put in the hours, you’ll feel stronger and stronger – more capable.
Implement Productivity Habits
There are steps you can take to prove that you have it in you to be productive, and it really boils down to changing your habits. For example, how much time do you spend flitting around online?
Do you surf the ‘net, binge watch Netflix shows, or even get lost scrolling through your busy Facebook news feed? Chances are, you might tell yourself the lie that you have no time to build a business.
Even if you don’t flit around and your day is truly packed with your regular offline job, family activities, and more – is there anything else you could do to sneak in some work time?
One habit you can implement is to get used to working at about the same time every day. Or, if your schedule varies, then commit to spending a certain amount of time per day, such as two hours a day – or even 30 minutes initially if you’re stretched too thin.
Take baby steps. If all you can start out with is 15 minutes, or writing half a page or learning something for 10 minutes – the seize that opportunity! There’s no need to go from stalled to suddenly the most productive person on the planet in mere seconds.
Make it a point to celebrate every single success that you experience. That means smiling and giving yourself a little pat on the back when you do work every day straight during the week.
Or an “atta boy??? (or girl) when you take time to learn something and then implement it – no matter how crude or newbie-ish it may be. Give yourself props for what you do accomplish.
You have to learn how to replace all of the negative self talk that stems from self doubt with positive kudos for each small step you take in being more productive with your business.
That’s the thing … no one else is going to cheer you on the same way. Just as nobody else would admonish you as you do to yourself. As an online entrepreneur, nobody will have your back or tell you what a good job you did.
Only you can do that. And if you fail to show up and at least try – you won’t be able to truthfully tell yourself you did a good job. The truth will be that you allowed fear and hesitation to ruin your productivity.
Spend More Time Working Than on Self Help
There might be a problem with you learning what’s being taught in this report. You might be the kind of person who appears to be all set on learning how to change – but you never actually follow through with the commitment.
Sometimes, people get addicted to finding out why they do the things they do. They feel something must be wrong, so they invest time and money to uncover it. And when the answers are revealed, they go search out more answers.
You might be addicted to studying time management tips, for example. This is all due to the fact that your mind continues to rule and feed you the lie that you don’t have time to work on your business.
So as you keep saying it, you keep reading time management tips. That makes you feel better – because you’re working on it. But reading about something and implementing change are two very different things.
Yes, your mindset has to change, but then you have to set aside the research and learning and actually start digging in to see if those tips you read about actually work. That means no more books.
Turn off the YouTube and the Ted Talks and quit asking people how to change and just do it. Just try. See if one of those tips you read about will help. If not, try something else. But limit your time spent absorbing self help if you catch yourself never doing anything with the information.
For work at home entrepreneurs, the very best antidote to a defeated mind is to work. It helps develop a sense of pride in you and your accomplishments. It generates no guilt – unlike procrastination.
You’ll also gain invaluable insight into what works best for you – and what doesn’t – because you gain experience in your business. You can confidently say what you feel comfortable with because at least you’ve given each method a try.
Self doubt is like a poison that keeps you from getting up out of bed each day. You have to become aware of what’s going on, separate the lies from the truths and then work around it like it’s the plague.
Start by checking in with yourself each day – or even several times a day if necessary. Get strong to combat your feeble mindset and in time, you’ll be soaring to new heights and laugh at how easily controlled you were by something that wasn’t even real.
Don’t feel like you’re alone in this journey. Most marketers suffer from self doubt, even once they’re successful. They might wonder if their big JV launch will go off without a hitch.
Every time they level up, there are fears and doubts to contend with – but they end up going forward anyway, and this is why they see such huge success. The future is whatever you want to make of it – not what your tricky mind says it has to be.
‘The Quiet Revolution’
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(Part 2 of a 6 x Part Series of Helpful ‘Self-Doubt’ Articles)